Sports have come back with a bang in 2022 as people indulge once more in their passion both for playing sports themselves but also for watching live sporting competition.
Producers of television shows have noted this uptick in the appetite for all things sports related, and there have been an ensuing flurry of TV shows covering a whole variety of sports and sporting topics.
Here we detail some of the best shows that exist today, and survey which of them are readily available on streaming platforms such as Apple TV, Netflix, and HBO Max.
Everything in One Tree Hill comes back to basketball, with the town’s local team being the focal point of the community
One Tree Hill
There are some communities around the United States of America for whom sport is their lifeblood, with practically everyone in a town or district having some sort of connection to a local football, hockey, or basketball team.
In the case of One Tree Hill, basketball is the sport of choice, with the town’s ballers being the protagonists of this show which has been brought back to life by both HBO Max and Hulu.
The show shot to fame back in the day because of heartthrob characters played by the likes of Sophia Bush and Chad Michael Murray, but kept the attention of viewers with outlandish plot twists, such as a heart transplant tragically falling through because a dog ate the freshly harvested organ.
There are also a good number of completely unhinged bad guys and gals, all of which must be overcome by the show’s heroes – all the while they are writing their respective names into the annals of local and national basketball history.
Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty
Another HBO Max show about basketball, Winning Time does away with the outlandish fiction of One Tree Hill and focuses on the facts that have been overseen by NBA bettors and observers for decades – as they watched the inexorable rise of the LA Lakers. This is undoubtedly the show to watch for all serious NBA fans and bettors, many of whom will watch in dismay, realizing the franchise that once delivered season after season for free bet wagers and parlays, is now a shadow of its former self. With Lebron James no longer the force he once was, Lakers fans can watch this enthralling show and dream of the days when LA had a team that were a sure fire bet to reach the playoffs and then go all the way to the Championship game.
Eastbound & Down
Trying to remain relevant in any sporting field can be tough, especially when you are coming towards the end of your career and do not have the sort of positive public image that some of your peers possess. Such is the situation that Kenny Powers finds himself in, battling against the grain to thrust himself back into the MLB spotlight.
The result is some of the most hilarious scenes ever recorded for television, with even Will Ferrell making an appearance in one particularly deranged episode, that will have baseball fans – and anyone else for that matter – rolling around at home.
It takes a few episodes for viewers to realize that Powers is not a character to be taken at face value, but once you are on the same page as writers and creators Ben Best, Jody Hill and Danny McBride there is no turning back from inhaling all four seasons as quickly as humanly possible. All 29 glorious episodes are available to watch on HBO Max.
College football and the NFL continue to throw up incredible amounts of stories, all of which are ripe for the picking by producers and screen writers alike
Friday Night Lights
When it comes to epic sports stories that pull on the heart strings of viewers, American football is the undoubted king of sports movies and TV shows. However, there has been criticism in some quarters that such shows tend to be cliché and continuously follow the same old plot and character tropes. While this might be exactly what some viewers are looking for, there are others who want a new take or slant on this sub-genre of sports show.
That is exactly where Friday Night Lights comes in, showing the softer side of Gridiron; portraying the players, coaches, and fans as people rather than the cardboard cut outs that the media and big companies so often portray to the general public.
Stellar performances from the likes of Michael B. Jordan put the icing on the cake of what is one of the best American football shows ever made. It is available to watch on Netflix, Hulu, and Peacock.
Soccer shows are few and far between and those that have been made always tend to be very much tailored towards a UK audience.
Ted Lasso realizes the impressive feat of bringing together UK and US audiences, as the loveable protagonist of this show is tasked with taking over an English soccer club, without him really having a clue about the vagaries of the ancient and hallowed game.
Hilarity ensues, but the show’s humor is tempered by some heart-warming story lines and character arcs, which genuinely catch viewers by surprise. It is a show that will not be for everyone, but is original none-the-less, and that is half the battle in the modern entertainment mainstream.
The English Game
Sticking with what the English call the “beautiful game”, The English Game is all about the beginnings of soccer. There is something problematic in the way the show tries to imply that the English gentry had a hand in creating the sport, when most historians agree it was first devised on the cobbled streets of working-class English and French towns and cities.
That said, the show is still an intriguing one for anybody interested in the history of one of the most followed and played sports in the world. There is also the feel of a period drama about the whole thing, which is an innovative way to present a sports show. It is available to watch on Netflix.