I suspect it does, although I don’t have any firsthand knowledge.
In NHL hockey, I think you see a lot of this. I suspect it has a lot to do with the fact that salary caps have made it nearly impossible to spend an entire career with the same team. Also, it is a relatively smaller league. So, players are moving around a lot and really get to know each other off the ice as well as on it. While they’re very competitive on the ice, I think there are very few players who really have hard feelings towards others. Look at how P.K. Subban got a warm pre-game welcome back to Montreal after being traded to Nashville this season, but then earned some friendly boos by the fans during the game (Subban brought to tears amid Habs’ salute). I suspect interactions between players are similar.
In contrast, I think in the NFL there is a lot more of a tendency for the “ribbing” to be malicious. Bigger league, less movement between teams = less camaraderie. When players pile on in a big tackle, there’s lots of pinching and punching that goes on out of sight of the refs, just to try to add to the psychological warfare. I don’t think it plays off as friendly competition.
I would guess it is probably the worst in individual sports. The athlete is surrounded by his coaches and entourage who are constantly telling him/her that he/she is the greatest ever. If the paparazzi caught you socializing with a rival, fans would feel betrayed and the press would question your dedication to the sport.
- Are athletes more politically active in any point in history?
- Why is cardio good for athletes?
- Were Black slaves bred for athletic performance?
- Qui sont les athlètes les moins sous-payés?
- Is it better to be a voice actor or an athlete?
Again, just making suppositions here. I might be way off. Thanks for the A2A.