To quote the great Peter Griffin, “You know what really grinds my gears?” What’s grinding my gears at the moment is the fact that I have been bombarded with ads over the past few weeks on my TV regarding Toronto FC signing Jermain Defoe. Seriously, one cannot watch any sort of Rogers-owned sports network without having to see this commercial, so if you’re watching the Leafs on Sportsnet, you’re bound to see this ad about 5,986 times over the course of the game…okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but the commercial will pop-up many, many times.
For those of you who have been lucky enough to avoid it, here’s the gist of what happens. There are many people around Britain who in one way or another, whether it be hearing it over radio or reading it in the newspaper, find out that Jermain Defoe is leaving for Toronto. Upon hearing the news, they all proceed to spit out their beverage they were drinking, and the commercial ends with: “Jermain Defoe coming to Toronto, it’s a bloody big deal.” There was even a banner on TSN.ca last week reading the same thing.
First of all, by no means is this ad funny, and when see it over and over again, it gets even worse. Second, is this really a bloody big deal? This is my biggest problem with this ad. I understand that Defoe is a major name in the soccer world, but aside from the real die-hard Toronto FC fans, does anybody really care? Over the past month, when I talk sports with people, the conversation is usually around three Toronto topics: the Leafs general performance, the current winning ways of the Raptors, and the Blue Jays pitching rotation. Not once have I been asked, “hey Nick, how about that Defoe signing?” I get that is a select group of my friends/acquaintances/those I talk to in the social media world, but what is happening in my sporting world surrounding any Defoe talk seems to be reflecting the views of the majority of other Toronto sports fans.
Even with MLSE trying to cram the Defoe signing down our throats, it doesn’t seem to be drumming up any major interest anywhere. I don’t see it being discussed on TV, I don’t hear about it on sports radio talk shows, and I don’t recall seeing much about it in the newspapers since the day of the announced signing.
So I’m sorry MLSE, as much as you are trying to make the Toronto FC a legitimate team in the MLS and in the Toronto sporting world, the city is not a soccer city. I get that TFC have a die-hard fanbase, but it’s one that even with the Defoe signing, I doubt will greatly expand the amount of TFC followers, nor will it garner the media attention and exposure that the Leafs, Raptors, and Blue Jays have. Give it a rest, it’s not a bloody big deal.
On a related side note about people not caring, the Phoenix Coyotes announced earlier this week that next year they will be changing their name to the Arizona Coyotes. It’s funny how my Twitter feed exploded with the thoughts on the name change from people in the GTA, yet I wonder if anyone in Phoenix, or Arizona for that matter cared? Upon finding out, I bet most Arizonans (is that what they would be called?) had these thoughts in mind:
What the hell are the Phoenix Coyotes?
What the hell is ice hockey?
We live in Arizona, it’s hot, how does the ice not melt?
Of course this is a brilliant move to re-name the team. Now that they are named after and appeal to the entire state instead of just Phoenix, I’m willing to bet the people of Yuma and Tucson will be so thrilled, they will line up for days to get seats at the worst-named arena in hockey (Jobing.com Arena), just for a glimpse at them Arizona ‘Yotes! You can probably guess whether or not I am being sarcastic…
(Defoe image credited to www.blog.peacemagazine.com, Coyotes image to ellstrau.mynmi.net)