Always wanted to know what's going on in someone else's corner of the world? Kristina Knight gives us a peek into what's on her mind in a sporty kind of way...
Hello, sports (romance) fans! We’ve come to that point in the winter when all I can think about is a warm beach and a cold drink, and all I see out my window is snow, snow, and more snow. Which means hot drinks are top of my mind. The thing that keeps me sane? Sports! Seriously, winter is a great time for sports fans because there is so much to choose from—basketball, NASCAR, and this year the Winter Olympics!
But, for me, nothing beats the action on the football field. From last second hail Mary’s to a defensive goal-line stand. I’ve loved football for as long as I can remember, which is great because being married to a sportscaster, you get a lot of sports in your life.
This football season, though, I was quite happy to make it all about my fictional football player—primarily because my Cowboys and Radio-Man’s Bengals—don’t laugh, he’s serious about his love of the Orange and Black…just ask any of the stress animals he’s destroyed over the years—had seriously disappointing seasons. Which is why I’m already turning my focus to the Olympics!
I can’t believe the Winter Olympics are here. I’ll be glued to my TV—and writing during commercial breaks, natch—for the ice and speed skating. Those athletes take my breath away, they’re always moving so fast. Slaloms and snowboarding two more favorites, but the athlete profiles are what really catch my attention.
There is something so special about an athlete who trains a lifetime for a single week of top-flight competition. I know they get endorsements, but to train not for a multi-year multi-million dollar contract, and instead to choose a little medal—okay, a large medal? That is a kind of love of and dedication to a sport that you can’t help but root for..
I don’t know about you, but now that football is in the books, I’m in a serious Olympic zone. But the Olympics aren’t the only thing going on in sports!.
I asked my continuity partners, Elley Arden and Katie Kenyhercz, to chime in on their favorite February sports pastimes..
Elley, of course, is all over baseball!
“People ask me what I do in the winter when there's no baseball. I'll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” —Rogers Hornsby.
Whether you experience all of them where you live or not, there are four seasons: winter, spring, summer, and fall. But if you’re a sports fan, the four seasons probably look something like this: hockey, basketball, baseball, and football. There’s overlap, but when the snow flies and the temperature plummets, there’s nothing to comfort the diehard baseball fan except looking forward to February and spring training. Every year in February, MLB (Major League Baseball) teams report to spring training facilities in either Florida or Arizona, where they will hone their skills with the help of an intense daily practice schedule, and exhibition games, until the regular season starts in April. If you’re a baseball fan, spring training is your pilgrimage. But even if you’re not a baseball fan, it’s a great time to head south—or west.
Why go? For the baseball, of course. The venues are smaller, and it’s easier to get up close and personal with your favorite players. Most sign autographs daily. Plus, let’s face it. Unless you live in a warm climate already, there is something magical about watching a baseball game with palm trees in view and 80-degree temperatures—while everyone back home is freezing. And if you head south, baseball isn’t the only thing to look forward to. If you’re hitting up one of the teams who call the Tampa-Sarasota corridor their home, then you’ll have access to gorgeous beaches on the Gulf of Mexico. (Teams with facilities on the Atlantic side of the state have beaches, too.) And if you’re inland, you’ll have Disney World and Universal to fill the gaps between games. The way I look at it, it’s the best spring vacation around. A little baseball, a lot of sunshine, and endless fun.
And Katie is all about hockey this time of year—especially now that Las Vegas has their own team!
About eleven years ago I decided to set my hockey romance series in Las Vegas. I did this because at that point, there had been talk for years about putting a team there, but it’d never come to fruition. Plus, the setting of Las Vegas was a character in itself, vibrant, always moving and changing and providing the perfect backdrop for my characters to have fun and get in trouble. I named my team the Las Vegas Sinners.
Fast-forward to 2016, and the story breaks: the NHL is getting a new team, and it’ll be in VEGAS! I was so psyched. I secretly hoped they’d name the team the Sinners so I could get a ton of free press for my series—even if that’d mean I’d most likely need to change my team name. Well, that didn’t happen. Despite much pushback, the owner decided to call them the Vegas Golden Knights. It doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, and I’m still not a huge fan of the colors—slate gray, “Vegas” gold, and black—or the logo, but I’m over the moon that my beloved city finally has a real team.
Not only that, they are loved by everyone. Because they’re new, they don’t have any rivalries —although that’ll change by the season’s end, I’m sure. Not only that, they’re having a Cinderella run of a first season and taking the hockey world by storm. The cherry on top? They acquired my sweet, sweet Flower, Marc-Andre Fleury, as their starting goaltender. It hurt so badly to lose him in Pittsburgh, but if he had to go anywhere, Vegas was perfect. I’ve never rooted against the Penguins before, but now I have two teams. My Pens won back-to-back championships. I’d love to see Vegas claim the Cup this season!
Kristina Knight’s newest release is Lost on Anna Maria Island, part of the Sullivan’s Sons continuity with Elley Arden and Katie Kenyhercz. The Sullivan family leads a charmed life: mansions on Florida’s Anna Maria Island, stand-out sports careers, and devotion to one another. The Sullivan family also has a secret, one that changes everything for them…
You can find out more about Kristina on her website, and feel free to stalk/follow her on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
There you have it sports (romance) fans: February is chock full of action, in just about every sport imaginable. Do you have a favorite team or sport or athlete? How do you feel about sportsmen and women in romance novels? Tell us in the comments or join the discussion on this subject on our Social Media.