Even in a post-Lance world, word today that the International Olympic Committee had decided today to cut wrestling from the 2020 games came across as a craven stunner. And I won’t be surprised when they back down.
It’s not that I’m a huge wrestling fan. I’m not. But nor am I a regular fan of bobsledding, field hockey, rowing, hammer throw, or, for that matter, gymnastics or Alpine skiing or the 100 meter dash or swimming. At least not normally. And neither are you.
But come the Olympics, I’m totally absorbed in all of these. That’s the point. The more obscure the better. During London, I caught the Dream Team pounding some poor, hapless hopeful before they lined up for autographs. But that’s hardly sport.
I spent a lot more time — thanks to NBC’s excellent iPad app–watching things I absolutely don’t care about at any other time. I spent nearly an entire afternoon watching fencing. And another watching archery. I introduced my tiny daughter to field hockey–and air rifle (that was a bit of a stretch for a 2 year old. You can’t even tell the guns are firing. Lots of quizzical looks at dad.) And yeah, I saw a lot of online advertising during all of that, and didn’t mind (much).