Blog Post

Weekend Vid-Picks: Wide World of Sports

If your Super Bowl hangover has worn off but you’re finding yourself jonesing for more men in colorful outfits pushing an inflated leather ball up and down a field, NewTeeVee has you covered. I do love sports that to Americans seem exotic and obscure while in other parts of the world lead to economic downturns as they prompt millions to play hooky, wager vast sums and over-imbibe.

For instance, for those of you with access to the BBC’s iPlayer (and if you’re outside the UK, maybe proxies can help), you can catch the Six Nations Rugby Tournament (RBS 6) from the comfort of your own home (which, considering my experiences with rugby players and fans, is by far the safest way to watch). The event kicked off last week, and you can catch every scrum and try through the finals on March 15th live or on-demand within seven days after the match.

I know, it’s not exactly English Premiere League football, but MediaZone Brasil is webcasting coverage of the Campeonata Paulista — the championship tournament for the Brazilian professional league. Cook up a batch of feijoada, work on your samba and hear tear-jerking stories about a player’s rise from the Sao Paulo favelas to international fame and fortune in English or Portuguese. The site is giving away free passes for the weekend’s action, and match highlights can also be found on YouTube.

And YouTube has played a role in yet another controversy over sportsmanship. Seems the New York Mets’ Pedro Martinez and Hall of Famer Juan Marichal spent some time in their home country of the Dominican Republic participating in a cockfight — which is illegal in much of the United States. Video made it onto YouTube, was found by the New York Post (all vegetarians, I’m sure) and promises to make spring training press conferences uncomfortable for Martinez.

Which just goes to show that online video is making the international sports scene much more interesting — not to mention available, even to those without six-foot-high satellite dishes.