All-Star Games, Ranked
Now none of them "count".
In avoiding potential labor problems, Major League Baseball announced tweaks to their Collective Bargaining Agreement, the most breaking of which was that the All-Star Game will no longer decide home-field advantage for the World Series.
So where does this put the MLB in terms of other All-Star Games? We've created this handy list....
In addition to a skills competition that, while very entertaining, isn't up to par with the NBA's, the NHL tried several gimmicks to make their All-Star Game work. Gimmicks like GlowPuck and North America vs The World didn't land, but their new style of play sure did.
Using the fast paced, high scoring potential of 3-on-3 hockey, currently used to break ties in regular season games, the NHL doesn't limit their All-Star festivities to one game...but three, having stars from each division showdown in a tournament style contest. It's fun to watch, and and does almost the impossible....makes an All-Star Game must-see TV.
Add in the fun story like John Scott last year, and you have the recipe for the most watchable exhibition.
If they ever could find a way to make it there, the NBA All-Star Game seems tailor-made for goofs like JR Smith and JaVale McGee. Defense is a mere afterthought, with scores routinely flirting with 200, and the night usually just delves into an impromptu dunk contest and deep triples. Is it good basketball? No, of course not. But when it's hoops' finest lacing up and doing this in an exhibition, it's more than forgivable.
In addition, the NBA's accompanying events are the best any of the other leagues have to offer. The events go all weekend, featuring youngsters and potential future All-Star in the "Rising Stars" challenge on Friday night, before moving on to the action-packed Saturday night, featuring the Skills Competition, 3-Point Shootout, and Slam Dunk Competition. The game itself is merely an afterthought, but that's perfectly fine.
Now that it no longer "counts", the MLB has to drop a spot. All-Star Games are supposed to be fun exhibitions, and a game that features, say, someone from the Tampa Bay Rays pitching to someone from the Cincinnati Reds should not have any business deciding homefield advantage in the World Series.
Interleague play is fun and has been very good for the game of baseball, but one thing it did ruin was the All-Star Game. 30 years ago, the idea of a superstar like Mike Trout, of Anaheim, playing in an National League city like Atlanta or St. Louis was unheard of. Nowadays, it's a nightly occurrence, with 15 teams in each league ensuring that at least one weekly series will be interleague.
MLB's All-Star Game will, however, always have a few things going for it. For one thing, the Home Run Derby more often than not is entertaining (especially with the rebooted format of having timed rounds), and the fact that the game is held on a day where there are no other sports in session plays heavily in its favor.
A tradition unlike any other....star players across the NFL landscape suddenly developing mysterious injuries, forcing them to tragically abandon their Pro Bowl slot.
The NFL is in a tricky spot when it comes to hosting an All-Star game, because, as we all know, football is a violent sport, and the last thing you need is players getting hurt in a game that means nothing. AFC-NFC never really held the juice that, say AL-NL had. I mean, look at this moment from a few years back...
That's literally a player on the NFC playing a down for the AFC. Granted it was a nice situation, a final opportunity for Peyton Manning and Jeff Saturday to share a snap, but that just goes to show you how much of a joke the Pro Bowl is.
Also, try to remember the last time you remember a moment from the Pro Bowl, other than Sean Taylor's hit on Brian Moorman. You remember the 2002 MLB All-Star Game because of the tie, Magic Johnson's unofficial return to basketball in the 1992 NBA All-Star Game and John Scott's All-Star Weekend from Heaven last year. But you can't name any other memorable Pro Bowl happenings...at all.
Also hurting the Pro Bowl is that you have the game....and that's it. Whereas the other leagues' stars partake in various skills competitions, the Pro Bowl offers no such accompanying entertainment. Who among us wouldn't want to see, say Ezekiel Elliot and David Johnson partake in an obstacle course type event?
Here's hoping the game soon one day goes the way of the leather helmet.
What's your favorite All-Star Game? Tweet @GeoffMags5490 and keep the conversation going.
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