So often in recent years, we've heard NASCAR's stated desire to be considered mainstream; on a par with other professional sports.  Right now, there's a chance to, not only, be considered on par, but to present a storyline that would be referred to throughout all professional sports for generations to come.

Jeff Gordon wins the title and walks away.

The sports landscape is littered with the elite who didn't know when to leave.  That includes NASCAR.  I'm not sure I  would need all my fingers to come up with a list of those who walked away as champion; especially if you don't count Michael Jordan who did it twice, and still came back again…in Washington.

Should Gordon pull this off, forget the Hollywood or storybook tags to the story, it could very well turn him into a verb, "are you going to Jeff Gordon-it if you win the title?"

His exit would be the one that all future retirements, in all sports, will be compared to.  It may not be the way NASCAR dreamed it, but they'll take it.