A Sports Fan’s Guide to March

We’re officially through February and into March of 2020. The sun is staying out longer, it’s warming up outside, and both the NHL and NBA seasons are getting closer and closer to playoffs with eating passing day. Sports fan or not, there’s a ton of reasons to love this month, but if you are into sports, it’s a really good time. Besides the NBA and NHL playoff races going on, the MLB holds its opening day, the PGA makes a stop at TPC Sawgrass for the Players Championship, and the NCAA division one basketball tournament goes on for two weeks. Even if sports aren’t your forte, as I said earlier, the weather is getting better, the end of the school year is drawing closer and closer, and of course, St. Patrick’s Day happens on the 17th. As a fan of both sports and the warmer weather, it’s these reasons that make March one of the best months of the year. Additionally, Vancouver’s rugby sevens tournament happens in the first week of the month, which is always a great event that brings in a ton of fans. Traditionally, there’s lots of crazy outfits being worn and beers being worked on, leading to an electric atmosphere. Check out some of the best from last year right here: 

On the national sports scale, both the NBA and NHL seasons are wrapping up, and if you’re a fan of a team in a playoff spot of either sport, you know how the games continuously get more and more intense and entertaining to watch. With the Canucks sitting in a wild card spot right now, it’s a guarantee that the month of March will hold some very important games for the team, and it will be their play in this month that ultimately decides their fate for the year. But it’s not just the Canucks and their fans who’ll be biting their nails all of March, as both the Western and Eastern conference races are extremely close right now in the NHL. In the NBA, the Toronto Raptors are defending their title from last year very well, and sit in second place in the Eastern Conference. Although they’ll definitely be back in the postseason this year, their seeding within the conference is still very important, and the team can’t afford to take their foot off the gas in this last month of games. 

If you’re more of an MLB fan, March has that as well. Not only is Spring Training going on right now along with the anticipation of the regular season, the league’s opening day falls on March 26th. The new year brings a clean slate for teams who didn’t have the year they wanted to last season, and also brings another chance for the better teams to prove themselves and make a run at a World Series. With the beginning of the season, we’ll also see how other teams’ blatant disliking of the Houston Astros plays out on the field. So far in Spring ball, no team has been hit by more pitches than the Astros. Canadian fans will be keeping an eye on the Blue Jays’ young stars like Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and will hope to be a little more relevant in the standings this year. 

For the golf fans, March is a great time of the year for both watching and playing the sport. In Vancouver, it’s usually the time that many players think about getting back on the course again after the cold and rainy winters that we always see here. Even if it’s a little chiller than an ideal day would be, golf courses definitely begin to get busier and busier as March goes on. Daylight savings also helps with this, as people get the extra hour of daylight to finish their afternoon rounds. On the professional level, this year’s PGA schedule is holding great tournaments in March, which includes the Players Championship, a tournament that was previously played in May. Often called ‘the fifth major’, the Players brings in one of the best fields of the season each and every year and is always one of the most exciting stops on tour. Below are the feature groups for this year’s tournament. Big names only. 

Last but certainly not least is the NCAA division one ‘March Madness’ basketball tournament. The excitement, uniqueness, and entertainment value of this tournament is unlike anything in sports, with the first two rounds holding games literally all day. It starts with the top 64 teams in the nation, and ends with just one. In pro basketball, 16 teams make playoffs and play each other in a best 4 of 7 game series.  In the NCAA tournament however, it’s simply one game, and if you lose, your season is over. Because of this, heartbreaking defeats and stunning upsets are just par for the course in the tournament, and the result is maybe the best 2 weeks of a single sport in the whole year. 2 years ago, the Virginia Cavaliers were the first one-seed to lose in the first round to a 16-seed team in the history of the tournament. That defeat is one of many highlights in this video below of the best and most stunning moments in the last 5 years of the tournament. Although it’s a long video, the highlights are worth a watch: 

So there you have it. Indisputable evidence that March is one of the best months of the year for any sports fan. I hope that everyone can enjoy something this month and that all the events that we have coming up don’t disappoint. It’ll be another great month for sports, and hopefully for our hometown Canucks as well. It’s time to sit back and enjoy the games, sports fans. 

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