41°
UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

2-26-24 PDF
February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

Winter X Games Gaining Attention

White drops peoples jaws with tricks like the McTwist
Si.com
White drops peoples jaws with tricks like the ‘McTwist”

January is an exciting month in the sports world. There are the BCS bowls, NFL playoffs, nightly NBA action, and the NHL annual winter classic. There is one event, however, that largely goes unnoticed but is one of the most thrilling and dynamic on the sports calendar. The 15th Winter X Games starts on ESPN January 27th, and as usual, the event receives absolutely no attention from the mainstream sports media. This is the first of the two four-day stretches each year, along with the Summer X Games, that or action sports are highlighted. While everyone knows about Tom Brady, Lebron James, Sidney Crosby, Albert Pulols and other athletes at the top of their sports, stars in action sports are largely unnoticed. How many fans have Tucker Hibbert posters in their room? How many fans have heard of Simon Dumont? Or Hannah Teter? The sad truth is that these athletes only get one event a year to shine, excluding the Olympics once every four years. It is the British Open for sports such as snowboarding, freestyle skiing, and snowmobile racing. The X Games provides the fan with 24 hours of combined programming for four days across three networks; the sports featured are guaranteed to provide exciting action for the duration of the event.

            While the Winter X Games are not a superstar driven event, one transcendental athlete has made it so. Shaun White, also known as “The Flying Tomato”, has gained national fame mostly due to his pair of Winter Olympic gold medals in the signature event, the halfpipe. He is charismatic and media friendly, with an infectious personality. White has skills to back up his popularity, busting out tricks that two years ago would’ve been laughed at as completely impossible. Foreign sounding maneuvers such as a “double mctwist 1260”, dazzled viewers who caught a glimpse into the mysterious world of snowboarding. While complicated tricks will never peak a sports fan’s interest like a great dunk or a monster home run, these alternative sports are starting to make an impact into the American sports culture. X Games highlights are starting to make it onto SportsCenter and ratings on ESPN have steadily improved since the events inception in 1996. It seems as though America is finally catching on to action sports. This is a huge victory for an underground world that is slowly starting to break into the mainstream. Below is the schedule for the X Games:

 

Thursday, Jan. 27:

12-3 ESPN 2

9-11 ESPN

Friday, Jan 28:

12-3 ESPN 2

7-10:30 ESPN

Saturday, Jan 29:

4-6 ESPN2

9-11 ESPN

Sunday, Jan 30:

12:30-6 ESPN

7-10 ESPN (Men’s Snowboard Superpipe Final)