Deadline [ded–ˌlīn] noun – a date or time before which something must be done – Merriam-Webster
In the media world, we’re taught to take deadlines pretty seriously.
As sports writers, we’ve learned that the folks we cover have a very different definition for the word.
In sports these days, a deadline is a time when two sides would kind of, sort of, like to get something done, or at least make sure people think that’s the case. In reality, sports deadlines are as flimsy as single ply toilet paper.
Yesterday, the deadline for Albert Pujols and the Cardinals to reach a contract agreement came and went. Pujols said he wouldn’t comment on the talks after the deadline, and then he promptly did less than 24 hours later. The two sides might not have re-opened negotiations yet, but they will behind the scenes, in all likelihood, long before next winter arrives.
We’ve got the NHL and NBA trade deadlines coming up in the next couple weeks. Those are supposed to be the set times after which no moves can be made. Of course, trade paperwork takes a while to file, so many trades aren’t made official until a couple hours after those “deadlines.”
So don’t get too worked up when the March 3rd “deadline” inevitably passes and the NFL locks out its players. A deal won’t get done by then, but the two sides won’t exactly be calling their phone companies to disconnect their lines when it passes.
Keep this in mind: the world of sports operates differently than the rest of the world, and there’s no such thing as a deadline anymore.
Speaking of which, this was supposed to be done five minutes ago.
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