The Drive with Jody Oehler

The Drive with Jody Oehler

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Will We Finally Get Answers This Week?

The pandemic portion of our lives has evolved into a deja vu experience for most people.

When the pandemic rocked the US starting in March, we bunkered down and feared if we picked our nose that we might die. Sports? Who cared at that point? We just wanted to make it out with our family in tact and get some protection for medical workers. Many expected that sports were done for the year.

A few weeks later, we settled in to our new quarantined lives and argued about Tiger King. For sports fans, the conversation shifted to how and when sports would return.

A few weeks after that, we started to hope the worst was behind us. Instead of "IF" there would be sports, it turned into which sport could come back first and benefit the most. What a time it was to be alive when baseball was the leading vote getter for the sport that would gain the most and many people excitedly looked ahead to days where the pandemic took a backseat.

A few weeks later and here we are. The pandemic is raging, though with some much needed statistical perspective. Fear has given way to confusion as the biggest emotion many people are feeling. And the sports world? We're back to wondering how and when sports can come back.

This week should provide some answers.

For the NBA, testing will being in Orlando and players have until Wednesday to notify teams if they will be participating.

If early testing reveals rampant infection in NBA staffers on site, we'll see a shift.

If a flood of players opt out of the bubble and the NBA is staring at a heavily compromised competitive field, we'll see a shift.

If testing is good news and players overwhelming move forward with plans to play, we can start counting down the days until NBA basketball is back in our lives.

As for MLB, its roller coaster rider should mercifully come to an end.

If players officially vote down the 60 game option that owners proposed, its time to cancel the season.

If players meet the owners halfway and agree to the deal, its time to start getting ready to fall asleep to baseball games weeknights again.

And the NHL will wait and see how the other leagues fare before taking any action.

If one of these sports succeeds in coming back, it stands to reason we'll probably get all of them back.

We've been craving answers for months. We've been speculating on the future for months.

Finally, this week we should finally have some answers but there's no guarantee we're going to like it.

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