F1 takes US and Canada takes Qatar: our bold sports prediction for 2022 | american sport

Here are our bold predictions for 2022 in sports. Please note the bold (or should it be bold?) in bold predictions: these should be taken with a grain of salt.

Detroit Lions to win NFC North

Daring to the nth degree? May be. Good evening ? Absolutely not. Dan Campbell’s side have plenty of positives to build on for next season beyond the stunning win over Arizona. Detroit’s stellar offensive line returns all five starters next year. Jared Goff has settled in and should be a workable stopgap, allowing the Lions to spend their (likely) No. 2 draft pick on a rusher or wideout. And Campbell, for all of his game management flaws, has a roster that has fully incorporated his culture shift. When Aaron Rodgers moves to Denver or retires and the Bears miss their coaching hires and the Vikings underperform, the rapidly improving Lions will be ready to pounce. MJ

Canada to reach World Cup quarter-finals

Canada hasn’t even come close to qualifying for the World Cup since its first and only appearance in 1986. That will change this year – they currently lead the Concacaf Octagon after going undefeated for eight games – in due to a glut of young stars who have become major contributors to European clubs, including Champions League medalist Alphonso Davies (Bayern Munich), Jonathan David (Lille), Cyle Larin (Besiktas) and Tajon Buchanan (Club Brugge). As always, it all depends on the draw. But if John Herdman’s side can dodge a veritable pool of deaths, look for Canada to come out of the pool game and match Costa Rica’s exit from Concacaf eight years ago. BAG

Formula 1 will overtake the American public of Nascar and IndyCar

It took a few decades, but F1 finally figured out that the most direct path to an American viewer’s heart was soapy drama. The messier it is, the better. Netflix’s Drive to Survive docuseries got us hooked on these alien characters, their basic desires, and the frustrating obstacles between them – so much so that the thought of missing a race (not to mention qualifying or a practice session) would be. like watching a Real season. Housewives without also tapping into the reunion shows. The Abu Dhabi final drew a million spectators and its controversial ending (I repeat: Lewis Hamilton was robbed) will remain as the sport’s Who Shot JR moment. That is, everyone and their mom will be tuning in mid-March to see how this cliffhanger resolves.

While a million viewers may not seem like a lot compared to the NFL, that’s about half of the audience for Nascar, America’s most-watched motorsport, and their ratings have been plummeting for years. This year’s United States Grand Prix drew over 400,000 people to Austin for the race weekend. Next spring, a second USGP race will take place in the streets of Miami, possibly F1’s most American city. (It has the glamor, the international flavor, the speed culture, and a coastline that will be lavish from the air.) To put it in terms a new F1 might understand: Nascar might be in the lead, but the F1 follows closely and roughly to enter the DRS zone. To put it even more clearly: I live in Nascar country, but more and more I find myself slipping into cafe conversations on Hamilton Roscoe’s Bulldog or Lando Norris’ Twitch channel. Let’s face it, Formula 1 is on the move. The only question is how long before he definitely walks away from Nascar. AL

Max Verstappen celebrates on the podium with NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal after winning the United States Grand Prix in August. Photograph: Chris Graythen / Getty Images

Dominic Thiem to return to US Open final

Instead of solidifying his place at the top of the sport after his first US Open title in 2020, this season has been the nadir of Dominic Thiem’s ​​career. After mental exhaustion earlier this year, he suffered a serious wrist injury in June, suffered a major setback in August, and then his return schedule was recently ruined by a cold. It will take a long time for Thiem to regain his trademark form and intensity, but he will end 2022 among the best. CT

The NFL prepares for an 18th game … to play abroad

The NFL adding a 17th regular season game has always been a stopping point on the way to the much-desired 18th game. Pair that with the fact that the league recently announced international marketing areas for 18 teams in 26 different markets across eight countries – an announcement that was light on detail but important on ease of marketing – and it’s not hard to see the final plan: an international round (or a weekly individual match) played in each of these respective markets. Ask teams to travel and giving up a home game has always been a sticking point for the league’s international series, making it difficult to consistently send some of the league’s most popular franchises to games hosted in London, Mexico City or in Canada. The new marketing agreement adds Australia, Brazil, China, Germany and Spain to the league’s formal international agreements. As Commissioner Roger Goodell nears retirement, it’s easy to foresee a proposal similar to the infamous 39th Premier League game serving as a legacy plan. CO

American footballers will overplay their hand

Unbeknownst to many sports experts, football federations are charged with building the game in all its forms, from the grassroots up, and not just paying the able-bodied men’s and women’s teams at the World Cup. The women’s team should have settled their ‘equal pay’ dispute years ago, but persist in moving forward to the courts, where their case is flawed. The men’s team pretended to be ‘equal pay’ but the federation called their bluff by insisting on finding a way to distribute the World Cup prize money which is far more important to them. men than women – to the dishonor of Fifa. (Other countries have ‘equal pay’ by offering teams percentages World Cup prize money, a solution that would make the American women’s team laugh.) These teams will reach a point where they will no longer be able to settle for the sympathy of the uninformed, and they will end up negotiating in a position of weakness. Comic

The much-talked-about in-season NBA tournament goes up in smoke

Compared to his peers, Adam Silver has had a relatively uncontroversial reign as commissioner of the NBA. uninterrupted. While recently leaked information suggests that opposition to the play-in tournament is waning, it would not be at all surprising if there is a quick reaction, whether from the players’ union, the owners, or the players. of them. 2022 could very well bring us the biggest defeat of Silver’s tenure. HF

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