Two of the most over rated jobs in the world must be sports commentator and accountant. I’ll get to the accountants next time but, with the winter Olympics having recently ended, it seems prudent to take a look at the hallowed sports commentator who, presumably, is flown to the relevant sporting venue, put up in a hotel and paid a sum of money for us to hear their learned and informed opinions and, more importantly, predictions about the future. Unfortunately, despite the countless hours spent watching games (disguised as work), researching statistics and interviewing players, coaches and other hangers on they have no better idea about what’s happening than I do.
This was brought home to me in the bronze medal ice hockey game between USA and Finland. Almost no one gave Finland a chance to win this game. The USA would bounce back from their hard fought semi-final defeat against the Canadians and stroll away with the bronze. Easy. In fact, Finland won the game 5-0. I also thought the USA would win. Why aren’t I getting paid to fly to Russia to voice my opinion when it’s certainly no worse than those who are?
I can appreciate the valuable information about trades, injuries and other sporting news commentators impart but, when it comes to making predictions about future winners, be it ice hockey, AFL, soccer (I wonder how many picked Olympiacos to beat Manchester United in their latest Champion’s League game) or any other sport, they don’t seem to be any better at getting it right than anyone else. I suspect if I got my veterinary diagnoses wrong as often as their sporting predictions I would very quickly find myself out of a job.
Dr. F. Bunny