I was a draft geek before it was popular to be one. I was a draftnik before the word was invented. The first draft I truly paid attention to was the one that brought us Mike Munchak. I believe it was 1982, and I was a big Oilers fan. I had just graduated HS, and was out of a job at the time. I had my portable radio and listened intently all day long for all the picks. This was in a time when it wasn't televised. My Dad was pissed that I wasn't out "pounding the pavement". I was more concerned about our 3rd rd pick.
The next year, 1983, was the time I bought my first "ourlads guide". I think by the following year, I was also subscribed to PFW, and some new guy by the name of Joel Buschbaum came out with an excellent draft guide and by then I was hooked. I was a fire breathing draftnik of the first order. If there was a Draftnik club at the time, I would have been the George Washington of my time.
The first time I watched on TV was 1987. That might have been the 2nd year it was televised. This is how geeky I was. My parents didn't have cable (yes I was still living at home..hold the comments!) so I drove over 100 miles to go to my Uncle's house in Madisonville because they had cable. I called in sick that day to work, and went to my Uncle's house and sat there alone most of the day with my handy dandy Joel Buschbaum draft guide at the ready and ESPN blaring with a young Mel Kiper leading the way. My parents thought I was crazy. I was. This was the day the Oilers drafted Alonzo Highsmith. Later that day my cousin got home from school. I guess she was a sophmore and she was livid because her favorite soap opera was on and I was an invader watching something extremely stupid and she missed her soap. Still remember that. We were close at that time, and I don't think she talked to me for months lol.
Age has softened me a bit. I'm still a big fan of the draft but it's not the end all be all event that it was for me back in the day. Nevertheless, my butt will be planted in my chair tomorrow and Friday night. I've already warned my girlfriend we aren't going out either night. It's the season within the off-season to me. This is where championships are built and there is just something about watching the process live as opposed to reading about it the next day. I learn so much more watching it all unfold and I like the chess match using the incoming talent and draft picks as the live pawns moving about.
I should add that in 1988 I moved out of the house for the first time and into an Apartment with cable. I've watched every single draft since without fail from the first pick to nearly the last since 1987. Even my wedding was planned to not miss it in 1990. I haven't missed a single first rd pick in that entire time. 25 years of drafts not missing a single high pick. There has to be an award for that doesn't there?
There is bound to be a 12 step program...