Thursday, September 17

Sportsmanship in a Pandemic


Fires are still burning out west, though rain in Washington has dampened things somewhat. Mostly, it's muggier than usual, however and we'll need more rain to put the flames out entirely and clear the air.

In OTHER news, Coronavirus continues. Looking through the archives, I'm reminded that the Coronavirus is, in many ways, simply a rerun of the Spanish Flu pandemic. In a past post, here, I recounted how the Seattle Metropolitans were the first American team to win the Stanley Cup away from the Canadians. In that post, I mentioned that Seattle was going to play Montreal again in 1919, but the Spanish Flu caused the contest to be cancelled. Today, my loyal reader will hear more about that later story. It seems particularly relevant in these days of Coronavirus and the attempts that professional sports teams are making to cope with it. I encourage reading of the newspaper clipping at left, from the April 2, 1919 edition of the Vancouver BC newspaper, "The Province."

As you can see, the series was tied and Montreal gamely wanted to continue against the favored Seattle Metropolitans, but the Montreal team was simply too crippled by the pandemic to continue. Rather than accept the Stanley Cup by default or by beating a Montreal team with players added at the last moment, Seattle supported the result that the series was declared a tie. Somehow, that level of sportsmanship by both teams seems to be in short supply nowadays.

Lest we get too focused on current events, we should remember that the previous epidemic lasted for two years and claimed over 500,000 lives in America alone. History suggests we may be dealing with the Coronavirus for quite some time to come.

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