Will Lacrosse become America's Game?
Can Major League Lacrosse ever take Market share from Major league Baseball or is the fan base different? I have been a die hard lacrosse fan for more years than I would like to admit. Until recently, I would get my lacrosse fix by going to local High School and College games. Now I am able to watch on TV – WOW this sport is really growing. Many of my friends never really knew what lacrosse was or how it was played and I would drag them to a game, after that they were hooked. The sport is just addictive, once you taste it you can’t get enough. But can this sport out play America’s pastime? Ten years ago, I would drive around my home town and see all the little league baseball fields bustling and kids playing catch with glove and ball in their yards. Now I still see kids playing catch in the yard only now with lacrosse sticks - the baseball fields are not as busy and in the outfield I see that all familiar orange framed net. Could it be? Is Lacrosse taking over? Will this becomes America’s pastime? After all, what better sport to call America’s pastime than the one Native Americans played hundreds of years ago way before someone threw out the first pitch! Not to steal a bit from the great George Carlin – “In baseball the object is to go home! And to be safe! - I hope I'll be safe at home!” Lacrosse came about when Native North Americans played the game as a way to train for war. No that’s a sport! I can hear George Carlin now – In baseball you bunt the ball – In lacrosse your rip a shot!
Let’s get back to the original question – Can the MLL take market share from the MLB? Lacrosse now has TV time, that’s big and it’s a start. How many viewers tuned in to see Rochester and Boston go into overtime in the pouring rain? My guess is not as many that tuned in to see the Red Sox beat the Blue Jays, but that’s OK – LACROSSE IS ON TV. At this stage the more visibility the better. The more publicity the better! I now hear commercials where lacrosse is referenced in the mainstream instead of baseball. The fact that Jim Brown is now the owner of the Long Island Lizards needs to get out to the masses. In an interview with “Lacrosse Magazine” the 76-year-old Lacrosse Hall of Famer said;
"It's like bringing me back alive. It's something I know, something I did, something I understand and something I love, and here I am involved with it again. That's pretty good."
MLL needs to promote this to the maximum, one of the greatest football players of all time didn’t by a football team he bought a lacrosse team! We should be yelling this from the rooftops.
I don’t know if lacrosse will ever surpass baseball in the ratings, I don’t know if lacrosse will take over as America’s pastime – what I do know is the sport has doubled in the last ten years and has a growing popularity amongst the youth, that’s where it needs to begin. Who knows, maybe someday I will be in the car with my grand kids and one will say “hey gramps can you put the game on the radio” but he or she will mean lacrosse not that other sport.