Will 2022 be a better year for sports?
COVID-19 lockdowns, cancelled games, new policies, and several new developments still trail sports events worldwide, will things get better or worse in 2022?
2021 proved to be another challenging year in the world of sports, both at the college and professional levels. It was COVID-19 that once again affected a ton of things, including NFL odds provided by sites like BetUS and the entire sports betting industry.
Players continued to miss games due to positive COVID-19 tests or close contact with someone who had the virus. Every sport had teams shut down at some point, and games were canceled throughout the year, especially in December.
There was some optimism that health authorities would contain the COVID-19 pandemic at some point, but it just didn’t happen in 2021. It’s pretty clear that it’s not going away at the beginning of 2022, and leagues and teams will have to find a way to deal with it.
Sporting events are also facing some other issues heading into 2022, and it could be another long year. Champions will still be crowned in every sport, but there will be plenty of other questions that need to be answered.
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Will baseball be played in 2022?
Major League Baseball might not even take the field this season, or at least not on time. The owners currently lock the players out as they try to sign a new collective bargaining agreement.
Both sides haven’t been willing to budge on several vital issues, and it doesn’t seem like a new deal is close. Even if there is a deal, it’s glaring that there is a bad relationship between players and owners.
Other sports have had lockouts before, but a work stoppage has been detrimental to baseball in the past. The league has struggled to keep up with other sports in terms of popularity, and not having baseball to begin the year would be a huge blow.
What happens with booster shots?
Since the COVID-19 pandemic is still not going away, the question now will be what leagues decide to do with booster shots. More than 90 percent of all professional players are vaccinated, but it was a battle for some players to get to that point.
Now that booster shots are available, it will be up to each league to determine policies for players. The first round of vaccinations didn’t really help teams get through the pandemic, and there might be more hesitation for players to get the next round of shots.
In an effort to keep more players on the field, the NFL has also made some changes to its COVID-19 policies. It will be interesting to see if other teams follow that lead.
College sports have a major issue in 2022
The NCAA has lost a number of recent court cases that have now changed the way college athletes participate. For example, athletes can now use their names, images, and likeness (NIL) to market themselves, and some players have gotten paid big time since this was allowed.
The NCAA has also made recent changes to how a player can transfer to a different school, making it similar to free agency at professional sports. College basketball and college football have seen the most transfers, but it has hurt all college sports.
Additionally, coaches can now recruit players based on how much money they can make at a particular school, and that has become a complete gamechanger. There is no loyalty to a college anymore, and it’s hard to keep up with where players are transferring to.
Plenty of high-profile coaches supported the NIL deal, but it has become an absolute mess. The NCAA isn’t known for making good decisions, but it needs to create a system to end this chaos.
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