As astonishing of an accomplishment that it is, this would not be the year to have a child be talented enough to represent their country in the Olympic Games. Because nobody will be able to see them in person, unless they are a camera operator for NBC Sports.
Olympic Organizers for the Summer Games set to start on July 23rd officially banned spectators. All spectators. Nobody gets to watch in person in Tokyo, not parents, not siblings, not spouses.
Why? Because Japan spectacularly failed to prepare for the ramifications of COVID-19.
Rising cases meant Japan had to declare a state of emergency, which led to the announcement Thursday that the Games would be fan-less.
There will be 11,000 athletes coming in to Japan to compete, along with thousands of officials and support staff.
Japan has had an incredibly slow rollout of COVID vaccines. Roughly 25% of the population has hat at least one shot, which has led to numbers spiking recently.
Ticket revenue will be non-existent for the IOC, which is used to tapping into as many revenue streams as humanly possible. Back in 2016, 6 million tickets were sold for the Rio Games, which resulted in $1.2 billion.
All the pressure is now on NBC to create a compelling picture with empty venues. They plan on overwhelming viewers with over 7,000 hours of content from the Olympics on all their networks and streaming services.