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Ranking The Best Months in Sports

BOSTON - MARCH 28:  Shane Clark #20 of the Villanova Wildcats cuts down the net after defeating the Pittsburgh Panthers during the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament East Regionals at TD Banknorth Garden on March 28, 2009 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Michael MatthewsCorrespondent IMay 31, 2016

What’s the best month is all of sports? 


To answer this question, a few criteria have to be taken into consideration.


A.)    Even though sport is a global phenomenon, this list will focus primarily on the sports and leagues that garner most attention and generate the most interest in America.

B.)     Football is King in America.  Don’t believe me?  Look at ratings and revenue over the last decade.

C.)    The beginning and end of a season generate more buzz and interest than the middle legs.  This is especially true for those regular seasons that offer  more than 80 games (I’m looking at you NBA, NHL, and MLB).

D.)    Playoffs and championships generate more interest than the beginning and end of a regular season.

E.)     Cyclical events are not considered (sorry WBC, Olympics, and World Cup).

F.)     Major college sports matter (especially in certain regions).

G.)    Variety matters.  The more you have to choose from, the better.


So, based on the above criteria, this is how the rankings play out.


12.)  August


What’s Going On:

·        NFL pre-season

·        MLB regular season

·        NASCAR regular season

·        PGA Championship (Golf)


August has little to offer the sports fanatic’s palate – unless you’re a die-hard MLB or NASCAR fan.  The NFL pre-season creates a lot of buzz and anticipation, but how much do fans really care about meaningless games?  Golf closes out its series of Major championships with the PGA Championship, but the anticipation of that event is partially contingent on what Tiger has done in the three majors leading up to it.


11.)    July


What’s Going On:

·        MLB regular season

·        MLB All-Star Game

·        Regular season NASCAR

·        British Open (Golf)

·        Wimbledon Finals (Tennis)


July offers a few more major events than August, but the meat of month still relies heavily on the MLB and NASCAR seasons.  Things get kicking in the U.K. with the All English Lawn Championships at Wimbledon and the British Open Championship, but the interest levels of those events lie in the fates of the sports’ high profile players – Nadal and Federer, Tiger and Phil.


10.)    February


What’s Going On:

·        Super Bowl

·        NBA regular season

·        NHL regular season

·        College Football Signing Day

·        College Basketball regular season

·        Daytona 500 and beginning of the NASCAR season


Yes, February is home to what is arguably considered the most high-profile annual sporting event, but that’s not enough to get it higher than the ten spot.  NASCAR kicks off its regular season with the other “Super Bowl.”  Football purists get a small fix thanks to National Letter of Intent day.  Basketball (college and professional) and hockey get into the heart of their regular seasons.


9.)    May

What’s Going On:

·        Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes

·        NBA Playoffs

·        NHL Playoffs

·        French Open (Tennis)

·        The PLAYERS Championship (Golf)


May gifts us with the NBA and NHL conference finals – which usually makes for high-stakes drama.  Even those who don’t know what a furlong is tune in the first Saturday in May for the Run for the Roses.  Two weeks later, all eyes are on the Preakness as America watches to see if we will enter June with a chance at witnessing a Triple Crown. 


If that doesn’t quench your thirst, there’s the drama of the red clay at Roland Garros.  And for those who enjoy watching the weak crumble under pressure, there’s the infamous 17th at Sawgrass.


8.)    March


What’s Going On:

·        March Madness (Conference Tourneys and the NCAA Tourney)

·        NBA regular season

·        NHL regular season


There isn’t a whole lot going on in March, but this is a case of quality over quantity.  When men (and women) across America are taking four-day weekends during the third week of March to watch what is arguably the two most exciting days in all of sports, you know there’s something special going on.  After all, there’s a reason we call it March Madness.


7.)    December


What’s Going On:

·        NFL regular season

·        College Football Conference Championships and Bowl Games

·        NBA regular season

·        NHL regular season

·        MLB Winter Meetings


Ah, December.  With the NFL regular season winding down, teams fight it out for division titles and wildcard spots.  In the college ranks, there are conference championship games at the beginning of the month while the latter days are littered with bowl games.  There are always stories and trades that grab headlines during baseball’s winter meetings, and the NBA never fails to give us a titillating X-Mas match-up.




6.)     January


What’s Going On:

·        NFL Playoffs

·        BCS Bowl Games and College Football National Championship

·        College Basketball regular season

·        NBA regular season

·        NHL regular season

·        Australian Open (Tennis)


College Football crowns its (mythical) National Champion this month.  The NFL enters playoff mode.  Tennis has its first Grand Slam championship of the year.  College basketball begins conference play, while the NBA and NHL chug along in their regular seasons.  There’s a little something for everyone (unless you only live for baseball).


5.)     October


What’s Going On:

·        MLB Playoffs and World Series

·        NFL regular season

·        College Football regular season

·        NBA pre-season and regular season

·        NHL pre-season and regular season


In October, MLB crowns its champion during the Fall Classic while players and coaches in the NBA and NHL begin their quest for the crown.  All the while, Saturdays and Sundays (and Thursdays and Tuesdays) leave plenty for the football fanatic during the brisk days of fall.


4.)  June


What’s Going On:

·        NBA Finals

·        Stanley Cup Finals

·        US Open (Golf)

·        MLB regular season

·        Wimbledon

·        College World Series

·        Belmont Stakes

·        NBA Draft


The NBA and NHL crown their champions in the month of June.  Omaha, Nebraska plays host to college baseball’s championship.  Horse racing has its third leg of the triple crown, and depending on how things went in May, America could be crossing its fingers to witness something it hasn’t seen since 1978.  Then there’s golf’s US Open and the opening rounds at Wimbledon.  And if that’s not enough, you can still get a daily dose of baseball.


3.)  September


What’s Going On:

·        NFL regular season

·        College Football regular season

·        MLB regular season

·        US Open (Tennis)

·        NASCAR Chase begins


Another month of less is more.  The NFL season kicks off during September, and in a league built on parity, the beginning of the season means the road to the Super Bowl officially begins (just ask the Arizona Cardinals).  Not to mention, the college kids strap on the pads this month too. 


If the beginning of football season isn’t enough to whet your whistle, the MLB season is winding down, and the push for those precious playoff spots gets hot.  Oh yeah, and in New York they have this little thing called the US Open at Arthur Ashe Stadium.


2.)     November

What’s Going On:

·        NFL regular season

·        College Football regular season

·        College Football Rivalry Week

·        NBA regular season

·        NHL regular season

·        NASCAR crowns series champions


Although the NBA and NHL officially begin in October, November is when the ball really gets rolling.  In the NFL, the contenders begin to emerge as the pretenders begin to show their true colors.  College Football enters the twilight of its regular season, which culminates in the ever-intense rivalry week.  Good thing the grass begins to die in November, because you’d be hard pressed to find a fan willing to leave the confines of his man cave.


1.)    April


What’s Going On:

·        NBA regular season and playoffs

·        NHL regular season and playoffs

·        College Basketball Final Four

·        College Hockey Frozen Four

·        MLB Opening Day

·        The Masters

·        NFL Draft


The list says it all.  April is the only month of the year where an all-around sports fan can have a little bit of everything.  The playoffs begin in the NBA and NHL.  Opening Day is one of those unofficial holidays that are celebrated every year.  Then there’s the widely watched Final Four, and the lesser-watched (but highly entertaining) Frozen Four. 


For NFL enthusiasts there’s the draft – an excuse to sport that team jersey during the spring.  And who can deny the drama that is Amen Corner at Augusta.  Yes, April offers a robust buffet; and that’s why it’s the best month in all of sports.

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