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Discusses Trhe Role Of Sports And Violence Surrounding It.

2192 words - 9 pages

In today's society, mediated violence is on the rise through such programs as America's Most Wanted and Cops. The same holds true in the world of sports and how different media outlets portray violence. On the court, violence is expressed by almost everyone involved from the athletes themselves to the coaches and spectators. Off the court, instances of violence still have the potential to make it on the "Sports Center Top 10", such as an ugly soccer riot. The "Big 4" sports, which are baseball, basketball, football, and hockey tend to have just as many violent athletes and acts that occur in less mediated sports such as soccer and rugby. Violence sells and the media is taking full advantage of the popularity of violence to increase ratings, enhance buy rates for Pay Per View events, and to increase magazine subscriptions, among other things.To begin the content analysis of sport, one must start with the most barbaric of the "Big 4" sports, hockey. Players are basically taught to hurt the opposition and win at all costs. This motto is how the game is exposed to the public. If one were to put on any sports highlight show that is covering hockey, one will find one of two things; either a great save or a fight. For example, during a recent episode of Sports Center, the first highlight that was shown was a fight that broke out seven seconds into the game. Fights do not win hockey games, so why is the media glorifying fights?First of all, hockey is currently in the middle of the playoffs. One does not have to be a die-hard hockey fan to understand that when a player gets into a fight on the ice, they are usually looking at a five-minute penalty. One could argue that winning a fight will bolster a team's momentum, but it does not make sense to get into a fight, especially in a playoff atmosphere, where a team either wins or goes home. Fights are considered a part of the game and fights have the potential for serious injury. For instance, Nick Kypreos who played for the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1998 missed the entire season due to an injury he suffered after getting into a fight on the ice.In 1999, during a playoff game between the Detroit Red Wings and the Dallas Stars, Ed Belfour put his stick between Martin Lapointe's legs and yanked it upward into Lapointe's groin. The audience was lucky enough to see the replay over and over again. The funny thing is, Ed Belfour was not even suspended. Research conducted by Steven T. McCaw and John D. Walker discovered that the winning team is less likely to use acts of violence during the course of the game. Once again, this begs the question, why is the media glorifying acts of violence in sports? If one opens the cover of Sports Illustrated during hockey season, one is more likely to find a picture of a hockey player dripping blood then any other photo that is related to the sport of hockey. In the text Media Sport, Bryant, Zillmann, and Raney state, "The bottom line seems to be, violence in sports sells." People...

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