Playoffs? Don’t Talk About Playoffs.

Some of you out there will probably recognize the title of this post from a quote by the Indianapolis Colts’ Coach, Jim Mora, back in 2001. (If you’re not familiar with it, check it out.) I should tell you, however, that in contrast to his request, this post will be doing the exact opposite; talking about the playoffs.  (Just so we’re clear, when I say playoffs, I’m referring to the post-season/championship tournament for the national sports leagues.)

I was reminded of the ‘power’ of the playoffs, this past week when I was on vacation in the Dominican Republic. While I did, after much deliberation, decide to bring my iPhone along for the trip, I did not use it to check my email, make a phone call or browse the internet. It did, however, serve another vital purpose: keep me updated on the playoff progress of the Bruins (hockey) and the Celtics (basketball) – both teams of my native city, Boston. For me, this was significant because I don’t follow either team closely during the regular season. Sure, I might catch a game here or there if it’s on at a bar I happen to be at or I’m bored at home, but the regular season is just that, regular. Call me a fair weather fan or a bandwagoner, but I can’t get enough come playoff time.

What’s cool, I think, is that I’m not the only one. With the playoffs, you don’t have to be a fan of a team involved, you just have to be a fan of sports. The athletic skill and bravado on show during playoff games is something all of us can appreciate.  And, clearly, we do. It’s no secret that TV ratings are the highest during postseasons. Of course this should come as no surprise; it is exhilarating to watch teams, players, and coaches push their bodies and psyches to the absolute limit to do whatever it takes to win. Playoffs are sports at their finest.

I just wish playoffs happened year round. Though, I suppose that would take away from the magic.