Friday, July 31, 2009
Him going back to LA gives the Lakers so many more options and so much more versatility and has to make them one of the favorites to win the NBA Championship and have a chance to repeat. With a core that has Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum, Ron Artest and Odom they are set up well. It will be interesting to see if the loss of Trevor Ariza and the addition of Ron Artest makes a difference one way or another. Ariza may be better offensively but played good D, Artest is a lock down defensive player who can score if called upon. The bonus of having Ron Ron instead is that he can play the role of stopper which frees up Kobe to focus on scoring and distributing while helping keep him fresher (he has a lot of miles on those legs already).
It will be interesting to see how things progress involving the other teams in the league. The Cav’s added Shaq, always interesting when there is a chance that Kobe and Shaq will meet up, The Celtics look interesting if KG can return, Orlando is still strong but what will Vince do? Toronto made major moves but it is doubtful that they will get to that class, even with Hedo Turkoglu. San Antonio got sneaky good bringing in Richard Jefferson (100+ pounds lighter after dropping his fiance late in the 4th quarter) There is an array of teams in the West that could be good just because they are in the West.
LA is poised for a good run at least but they do need to get as far a possible away from Adam Morrison. It is just not right that he have any championship rings when Barkley, Reggie and Malone not have one. At the very least someone buy him a bic or a Mach 3 Turbo to get rid of that terrible joke of a 'stache.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
In the short term it looks like former world champion and Ferrari driver Michael Schumacher will temporarily end his retirement and fill in in that seat.
"The Formula One chapter has been completely closed for me for a long time," Schumacher said in a statement Wednesday. "But for reasons of loyalty to the team, I cannot ignore this unfortunate situation. As the competitor, I am very much looking forward to facing this."
The only reason that I ever watched F1 was to see Schumacher dominate the F1 ranks and cruise to championships (Schumacher is a seven-time F1 champion, winning five consecutive titles for Ferrari from 2000 through 2004 - 91 victories and 154 podium finishes) . As I have mentioned before I admire greatness in sports and when someone is that good and that dominant it is great to see. A lot of people don’t like that and would prefer parody but I choose greatness over mediocrity. Now I will be the first to admit that maybe the reported $80 million a year in the last five seasons at Ferrari was pretty excessive and made him probably the highest paid athlete in the world but no one can argue with results. There is a lot of money in F1 and I suppose by comparison his salary makes some sense. Sure there are people out there that say that it is more the car then Shumi but they have not dominated the sport since he gave up his seat. Just like Jimmie Johnson, people say that it is the car that is the athlete not the driver, in some cases that may be true but putting Casey Mears into the 48 Lowes probably doesn’t win 3 consecutive Championships.
It will be interesting to see how Schumacher responds after such a long layoff. Is this going to be like Michael Jordan coming back to the Bulls the first time to still be the greatest or will he be Michael Jordan coming back as a Washington Bullet errr, Wizard. We will see during a Grand Prix coming to a major European City near you.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
It is interesting how much different the emphasis is between the major sports as it relates to trades and trade deadline day.
MLB - In baseball there is a bit of movement usually. Deals are done primarily with 1 prominent player in the last year of a contract being moved to help a team either win a division or solidify a team that is assured a post season appearance. The asking is almost always top prospects (or package of prospects) not too often are Major League ready players exchanged for each other.
NBA- In basketball is either feast or famine at trade deadline day. With the salary cap the way it is only minor deals are made but there is the occasional huge deal that will go down. Of those big deals they are so complicated that you need a calculus degree to figure it out -" I’ll trade you my guy with no Bird rights, for your player without Bird rights a second round pick and my small forward who is retired, but I will also give you $8 million so you can buy him out and that will give us enough cap space for a mid level exception player this year and max out my star next year and you get Keith Van Horn". Not a lot of draft picks are involved in deadline deals in the NBA.
NFL - In football there is nearly no deals that are made, there is almost no reason to have a trade deadline. The only one I recall in the recent past was the deal that sent WR Roy Williams to Dallas from Detroit. The way the cap is set up and the non guaranteed contracts make it far less important and far more difficult to pull off a deal for any player as most funds are allocated by July and there just isn’t room to deal.
NHL- In hockey it is one of the must see events- it should almost be a national holiday in Canada anyway. It is all hands on deck, tv stations dedicate a day to programming and breaking anything that might even be possible or probable. These are almost all for rental players to help a team make a run not just for the Cup but in some cases just to make the playoffs because they need to try and keep their team afloat in the "non traditional" hockey markets. Nothing is off limits- players for players, prospects, draft picks and sometimes for that much needed bag of pucks.
Each league has different ideals and how valuable is a player? How valuable is a top prospect? How valuable is a draft pick? Do I try to win now by mortgaging the future or do I hold onto the unproven guy who may become a superstar or may never crack my lineup.
By this Friday we will know what some baseball GM’s have decided what is more important.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Johnson, even without the beard that he has been sporting for the better part of the year, grabbed an improbable victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway when a speeding penalty to Juan Pablo Montoya ruined the day for the most dominant car in the field. Juan Pablo was so upset during the next caution that he told his crew chief...and anyone else who was monitoring his radio "I swear on my children and my wife that I was not speeding!" he shouted over his radio. "There is no way! Thank you NASCAR for screwing my day." Sounds to me like someone who was pretty sure that he thought he was in the right but I guess he misread his tachometer . Not only did that miscue cost him near certain victory but it also dinged him in the pocket book which probably hurts nearly as much. At $223,953. It was the most expensive speeding ticket in NASCAR history: Jimmie earned $448,001 for the victory, while Montoya, who fell to 11th-place had to settle for a mere $224,048. Yeah I know it is all relative, 200k is nothing to shake a stick, but even in NASCAR world that is still a big loss.
You almost get the sense that Jimmie won’t get the true recognition that he deserves until after he is done driving. It seems like he doesn’t get the respect that he deserves as a driver nor does Chad Knaus get as his crew chief. With the records and resume that both these guys are putting together you would think that they would get more national publicity. Maybe it is because it is a NASCAR thing. Tennis has Federer, Golf has Tiger still just isn’t the same recognition for Jimmie.
Friday, July 24, 2009
The White Sox starter Mark Buehrle was in the midst of going for history when he took a Perfect game into the 9th. The first batter, Gabe Kapler hit a shot to deep center, Wise went back to the track...to the wall...lept...grabbed the ball and brought it back from over the wall..jarring the ball loose from his glove, and grabbed it with his throwing hand as he fell to the ground. To come in cold and under that pressure and knowing what was on the line to make that play makes it just that much more impressive - one of the all time great grabs. I guess that is what a defensive replacement is supposed to do.
TO SEE THIS CATCH CLICK HERE - Dewayne Wise Catch
Mark Buehrle threw the second no-hitter of his career, this time perfection.
More people have walked on the moon in the last 40 years then thrown a perfect game. Only 18 perfect games have been thrown and 2 of them were in that late 1800’s. It is true that when a pitcher throws a perfect game, it is the team that plays a perfect game. The catcher has to call a perfect game and I guess Ramón Castro did just that. It takes no walks, no errors, and usually involves one or more great defensive plays. Sometimes that happens late when you know it is a big deal, sometimes it is in the first inning and you don’t know how important it is until after. A great example of this is the grab that Paul O’Neil made in the first to preserve David Cone’s perfect game.
Since Buehrle had been there before he seemed to be more at ease with the situation as he was seen talking to teammate Jim Thome in the dugout. Often in no-hit situations teammates won’t go near a guy with a no-no on the line... baseball players are some of the most superstitious in all sports.
To top it all off President Barack Obama, a very open White Sox Fan, called and gave some advice for Chicago White Sox White Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle - Buy your center fielder a "big steak dinner." Obama called Buehrle from Air Force One.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
I don’t agree and in some cases understand a bunch of the rules, some of the scoring, tactics and the way they operate the clock. It makes it very difficult to actually enjoy the game as being football. I know that the caliber of play won’t be as high but sometimes it looks like a CIS game would be played at a higher level. Just saying that sometime the execution of plays is severely lacking. I find the sport to be more interesting for 1 week a year and that is Grey Cup time in November. 1 game That’s about it.
In this league it seems like there is more turnover then any other league making it very hard to be a casual fan. So many players change teams or leave the league or come back to the league that it is hard to associate them with a team. Outside a few top line players there just aren’t any household names making it hard to root for them. That was made even more difficult this past week when they went retro. All the teams broke out the old style jerseys that was really more confusing then anything else. The Toronto Argo’s were the only team that had players names on the back. When you hardly know the players to begin with that is a big disservice to the viewers. When you do it so early in the season as well, even an avid fan won’t know a lot of the numbers and would be hard pressed to know who is who. Another sticking point to this is the fact that a lot of the uniforms were such a far cry from what they are now you would have no idea what 2 teams were playing. There were some logo’s that most people have never seen before. You wouldn’t know if it was Montreal or Calgary playing.
Sure they may go Retro to sell some more jerseys and merchandise but really, when was the last time you were walking down the street and saw someone wearing a CFL jersey? Unless you are in Edmonton or Saskatchewan chances are you won’t. A retro jersey is not going to motivate too many people to go "Cool, I gotta have me that sharp Alouettes throwback!!"
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Erin is one of the most popular and recognizable people at ESPN and has been referred to as "Erin Pageviews" for the amount of attention she gets from photo’s and video clips. She was a A former dance team member at the University of Florida and has been named by Playboy as the "sexiest sportscaster" in both 2008 and 2009.
To be honest I am both a fan of her and her work, and why not? She is a beautiful woman but also she is very good at what she does for ESPN as a sideline reporter. I feel bad that she was put into this situation. Sure she may use her sex appeal to help et ratings in her work covering sports but that is no reason for her to be subjected to all this. Just because she is popular and sexy that she doesn’t have some right to privacy.
Monday, July 20, 2009
In a tournament that was in need of a great story for the weekend got just that. Tiger Woods missed the cut for only the 2nd time in 49 Majors (the only other one was after the passing of his father). Without the #1 player in the world there was some worry that ratings would be low without his star power and also no Mickleson in the field, Watson more then made up for it.
I find it kind of funny that the 2 biggest stories of the tourney were 2 let downs - Watson and Tiger, not the winner who played some good golf, I mean he must have he won.
It is a weird situation right now, and I feel almost as bad for Cink as I do for Watson. Cink, who has never one a major before yesterday is now a Champion (which no one can take away from him, but how he and it will be remembered will be interesting. Will he be the guy that took the Open from Watson. It will be the tournament that Watson almost won not the tournament that Cink did win. They always say that you never remember who comes second...this might be the one very rare exception that that is not true.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Pierre McGuire has said many times that this would be close to a 5 year re-build but in this cap system I am thinking that it may take far less time then that and they look to be off to a running start, especially when you have a little extra money to play with. Despite the fact that they currently have little or no one that can put the puck in the net they also won’t be allowing too many in their own. It may come down to a lot of 2-1 losses and/or shootout games. So far in just 1 off season they have done a great job at building from the goal out. They have 2 solid options in goal with Vessa Toskala and Jonas Gustavsson that can split time and add a good level of competition between the two tenders for the number 1 job.
They currently have 9 + guys on defence and will have to whiddle that down to probably 7 so some of those guys may be available in deals that can acquire something up front that can step in and help out the offence. The pickups of: Francois Beauchemin, Michael Komisarek and Garnet Exelby add size and solid play. When you add in Jeff Finger, Tomas Kaberle, Luke Schenn, Ian White, Mike Van Ryn, Jay Harrison and Anton Stralman you have formidable back end.
Right now there is little or nothing in the cupboard up front in either the minors or on the roster. the Colton Orr pick up clearly does not fill that need but there are pieces in play that could be added through trade or a mid level free agent move. Don’t look for Jason Blake Alexei Ponikarovsky or Matt Stajan to become dynamic scorers anytime soon. They have already signed their first round pick from this year in Nazem Kadri.
I still hate those dirty Leafs, but again, coming from a neutral position you have to give ol’ Burkey at least a head nod for a good step forward. It makes you wonder how just about every other regime since ‘67 could have been so inept.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
As it was first reported, former New Jersey Nets and San Antonio Spurs forward Richard Jefferson decided that ~maybe I don’t want to get married~ so then he let his fiancé Kesha Ni’Cole Nichols know about his decision just hours before they were to exchange wedding vows. She immediately called her family and friends Jefferson choose a different approach and kept quiet for a while. Some of his friends had already shown up last Saturday for the $2 million spread. As a make up he reportedly gave his best friend his Black Amex (credit card) for the night and his guests made good use of the credit card to party at his expense.
According to reports the would-be bride was stunned, but "not entirely caught off-guard," said a friend of the family.
"She just wants to keep this as quiet as possible and move on. She’s doing just fine," a Nichols family insider said....at this point I don’t think that that is going to happen. You gotta feel for this lady, at least a little bit.
Jefferson now has come out to clarify that he had called things off the Monday prior and emails were sent out to his people on the Monday and her people Tuesday. He made it clear that the wedding was not actually going to cost the reported amount but he did give her money to start over. He said that it was not a settlement but a gift because he felt like it was something that he wanted to do not something he had to do. I am sure there is some truth to one side and some truth to the other. It is easier to indict a player before he has time to get the truth out because it is easy to believe that a rich person is more capable of thinking that he is bigger then he is or can just do as he pleases.
I guess in the grand scheme of things even if it wasn't $2 million up front it was probably an expensive affair that was planned...whatever the figure was, for a wedding that didn’t happen is still cheaper and less painful then a divorce later down the line. All the press now is bad but would be even more intense with people saying that it is just another athlete who can't have a successful marriage or was spoiled and even more rumors would probably be spread. One can argue that he could have handled the situation a little better but he had no way of thinking that there would be such a firestorm.
Cox currently ranks 4th on the Baseball All-time Managerial Wins list behind only Connie Mack 3,731, John McGraw 2,763 and Tony La Russa 2,500 and just above Joe Torre. Bobby has been named Manager of the Year four times (1985, 1991, 2004, and 2005) and is one of only four managers to have won the award in both the American and National League.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Truly the highlight of the show wasn’t even the Home Runs, it was Erin Andrews, sideline reporter for ESPN doing interviews with competitors and other Major Leaguers. I must say she is very talented in what she does. I would classify myself as a fan. Yet another reason why we should be able to have the opportunity to get ESPN and other American stations like Fox Sports and the like.
All the major North American sports have bits and pieces that are great about their All Star Breaks but none have the whole package.
Baseball has the best game and the most true to an actual game. The game just lends itself well to being able to play at a high level where there is much less chance of someone getting injured. There "skills event", the HR Derby is where they fall short.
Basketball would rank at the second closest to actual game play but it is more a show time atmosphere where there is little or no defence and a lot of over passing and show time- ally-oop style play. Occasionally you might get a moderate 4th quarter if it is still close but it is still a far cry from 100%. There Skills competition is by far the best because basketball lends itself well to their fundamentals being shown in a showcase form and the Slam Dunk Competition is still enjoyable to watch. There guys are so athletic that it makes for an entertaining show.
Hockey may look like hockey light there is a lot of free skating but there is no edge because of the risk of injury. With the fact that there is a goalie and guys with sticks it is still difficult to do anything spectacular. There same criticism goes for their skills night. Even the breakaway challenge is boring and that is the most exciting part of actual games during the regular season...if there is nothing on the line the interest just isn’t there.
Football is just brutal. Always has been always will be. It is strictly a vacation to the players and nothing more. It is a violent game that played at less then 100% is more dangerous then at full speed.
Tonight is the game and hopefully it will be some what entertaining. The president will be there to throw out the first pitch which is always interesting to see if he will throw a strike or not. Fortunately it is on Fox and we get to hear Joe Buck call the play-by-play and interview the President Barack Obama. Unfortunately it is on Fox and we have to hear Tim McCarver provide colour and there will be no Erin Andrews, just Ken Rosenthal.
Monday, July 13, 2009
When all is said and done there is a good chance that we will be able to look back and say that Albert Pujols was the greatest slugger of his era. It is too bad that it will probably be grouped into the steroid era but maybe that makes it even more impressive as long as he stays out of the steroid cloud. You don’t want to come out and say that this is the one guy who is doing it clean because we have been saying that for years then are shocked when "anonymous" tests are leaked to the media but of all the people in the game we want to believe that Pujols is doing it the right way. If in fact he is clean, as most believe that he is, he has a chance of going down as one of the true greats. Over the course of his first 9 seasons he has continued to throw up gaudy numbers and not just in one category. He is an all around hitter, he hits for Average, Power and RBI Production. Nothing proves this more then his numbers from this year. At the All Star break his has a legitimate chance of taking a run at the triple crown (leading his league in average, RBI and home runs). The last time that has happened was 1967 when Carl Yastrzemski managed the feat.
He is so good that almost every time you hear his name on the radio or on TV during the highlights the announcers always say "Why do they keep pitching to this guy??" The guy is a machine (as seen in this SportsCentre commercial ). That is a good question, I hate seeing players intentionally walked all the time like Barry Bonds did when he was hitting everything in sight but the comes a point when you just can’t justify having this guy beat you every night. It should be that if you can’t get the guy out, get someone who can, but it isn’t that simple apparently. I suppose that the main problem with that plan is that there doesn’t seem to anyone out there who is up to that daunting task. You can’t really stop him you can merely hope to contain him. As Dan Patrick says that only way he can be stopped is with a shot gun and league rules frown upon that.
Fans are in for a treat every time he comes to the plate. If he makes a run for the triple crown then you will start seeing cut ins on other sports every time Albert Pujols steps to the plate.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
It has been reported that Gatti may have been strangled by a purse strap and had a noticeable trauma to the head. A family friend has stated that he knew there were issues between the two and the couple may have been close to separating. Details are still coming but it is looking like there is a lot foul play in sports deaths lately.
Friday, July 10, 2009
Cubs pitcher and Canadian Ryan Dempster broke is toe on the field a few days ago. No it wasn’t kicking out the leg to stop the ball from going into centre field like he was Roberto Luongo...nope he broke it jumping over the railing of the dugout in celebration of a Cubs win. Sometimes it is the stupidest things that can take you out of the lineup.
Washington Nationals broadcaster Rob Dibble unloaded on the team saying This isn’t a Major League baseball team I’m watching out here....It’s pathetic. I’ve never seen a team that is ok with losing....Some guys are mailing it in, and it’s hard to watch.". Not taking the "Homer" approach to telecasts. If anyone in DC cared about the team he could have be in trouble....good thing he isn’t a Cubs broadcaster.
Blue Jays cut ties with BJ Ryan, on the hook for some $15mil. It would appear that no one had any interest in his services especially Cito Gaston. After having to swallow that much money maybe it opens the Jays minds to rid themselves of Roy Halladay and Vernon Wells’ contracts in a deal like what the Marlins and Red Sox did in the Josh Beckett-Mike Lowell deal...Want one? gotta take both.
Xavier guard Jordan Crawford apparently dunked over "The King" LeBron James at his camp. Nike reportedly confiscated videos of the dunk. Is this worse PR then him not shaking hands? Could have been a good commercial, they choose to take it another direction.
OAKVILLE, ON. - John Daly is coming to the Canadian Open. The Beer Store has been put on alert and Casino Rama has been notified.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
One of the best pitchers in baseball is also one of the most unknown. The fact that he plays in San Francisco does not help his overall exposure on TV or in the media. Not unlike Halladay who is hurt by being in Toronto and not getting the coverage he deserves, Lincecum, playing on the West Coast doesn't get the same viewers or publicity that he probably deserves from those in the East. That actually is only 1 thing that connects him with Halladay...they were almost teammates at one time. There was a very good chance a season or 2 ago that the Jays may be willing to move a then very good young prospect in Alex Rios to San Fran in exchange for Lincecum. If I am not mistaken it was the Jays who were the ones who balked at the proposed deal (my how hindsight is 20/20). For San Francisco the best deal was the one never made.
With the Blue Jays slipping, the Toronto Raptors are taking this time to get back into the headlines and remind people that there is a major team I may have been a little pre-mature with yesterdays blog about the Raptors.
Props to G-to-the-E for pointing out to me that there would need to be more dominos to fall for the Raps to get into a position to pull everything off and get all that they need to do done. I bow to his capology in regards to the NBA and the Raps
Apparently Bryan Colangelo had some other cards up his sleeve and the deal proposed with the Mavs was only part of the story. It now looks like there is a complicated 4 team deal that will free up even more money for the Raps and the Magic and move around even more players.
As it stands now Shawn Marion and Kris Humphries will be sent to Dallas in return for Devean George and shooting guard Antoine Wright from the Mavericks as well as small forward Hedo Turkoglu from the Magic. Dallas would then move Jerry Stackhouse to the Memphis Grizzlies with at least $2mil to allow for a buyout of his contract, who will also receive Raptors combo guard Quincy Douby, and the Grizzlies would send shooting guard Greg Buckner to the Mavericks.
Once this happens it will allow the Raps to go out and get a mid-level free agent or resign either Carlos Delfino or Anthony Parker. This makes for an even better deal then just getting Hedo Turkoglu and possibly Stackhouse. It is one of the first times that people not only in the NBA but the media that covers it that Toronto is being acknowledged as having a successful off season... now all they need to do is actually have a successful season and long playoff run.
MLSE must be pretty pleased on how their sports interests are actually making an effort to making the teams on the court and the ice worth watching again. Maybe some late spring games will be in their future soon. Imagine what can happen when you have a competent front office and don’t meddle in the Basketball and Hockey operations. You had to figure that they would see the light eventually.
Wednesday, July 08, 2009
A little more close to home the Toronto Raptors seem to be doing their best to make their team a little better right now to show pending free agent Chris Bosh that they are serious about building a playoff team that is looking to contend. They apparently just locked up former 1st overall pic Andrea Bargnani for their big man, they have apparently have a deal ready to go for former Orlando Magic star Hedo Turkoglu to complement Chrs Bosh. They currently have Shawn Marion but are in talks with the Mavericks on a potential sign-and-trade deal that would see a Jerry Stackhouse to TO. Now if Jose Calderon can play at his near All Star level that he was 2 years ago and Anthony Parker and Joey Graham can contribute they may actually be able to field a very competitive team in an increasingly more difficult Eastern Conference.
The Raps may be a little weak on the bench, especially in the back-up point guard position so we will see if that gets addressed or if they see who on the current roster wants to step up and perform in that roll. For the first time in a few years it looks like they are actually ready to take a run and go a little deeper into the playoffs.
Like I said earlier, this could go a long way to convincing Bosh that he should stay past next year and not get mesmerized by big lights, by a big stage and a truckload of money.
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
The Toronto Blue Jays are reportedly shopping the service of ace Roy Halladay, guess that is the white towel we have been waiting for. Halladay is almost the only pitcher on the team without a broken wing and can actually throw strikes so I guess it is time for him to move on. It is too bad that they can’t rid themselves of the albatross that is Vernon Wells and his massive contract.
The Reds managed to loose last night 22-1 to the Phillies. That is the worst loss in team history. This is not an expansion team either that means it was the worst loss in some 119 years, not good. The Phillies plated 10 in the first inning, not a great way to set the table for the rest of the game.
Remarks by Maple Leafs’ head coach Ron Wilson on a Toronto radio station could prove to be very costly. The Leafs are being investigated for tampering as it relates to the Vancouver Canucks Sedin twins. Wilson stated "You’re hearing right now, and this sounds very contradictory but, there’s a real possibility, I would think, that we would be going after the Sedins. Let’s just speculate there."
This they investigate but they look the other way when Brian Burke was rumored to go to the Leafs as GM. Seems like the NHL only investigates things that they feel like sometimes. Guess that is how 1 owner can lend money to the prospective buyers of a team or another can buy a team with no money. Guess It is very selective and subjective.
Monday, July 06, 2009
Outside of the actual hockey issue is the fact that this signing puts Ottawa well over the salary cap for next season and they are going to have to drop a significant amount of money to make this work. Does this meant that a Heatley deal is close? Are there more deals in the works involving say a Jason Smith, Chris Kelly maybe even a Mike Fisher? Makes it look like there are going to be a lot of young players playing next season just for the fact that they have a low cap hit. This is going to make the team look a lot different entering camp and depending on what deals can be made a very young 3rd and 4th line and back end to the defence.
More on this when more details become available for sure
Sunday, July 05, 2009
Last year at this time I wrote about probably the greatest Wimbledon Final ever and possibly the greatest tennis match ever played. Today may be the 1A to that match. Different game, different opponents but an epic battle none the less. The only thing that remains the same is the Tournament and Roger Federer, maybe there is a pattern here? Roger Federer and Andy Roddick played in a match that one can only relate to a heavyweight boxing match that should end in12 rounds but is now in its 20th and still going strong with little or no sign of fatigue from either competitor. This was truly a battle of the titans. What makes it even that much more compelling is the fact that Roger Federer is looking to surpass Pete Sampras with 15 Grand Slams. Pete and his wife were also there on hand arriving just after the first ball was struck.
And Roger Federer just did it - he just broke Andy Roddick’s serve for the first time in the Championship Federer is the Wimbledon Champion for the 6th time and is now at he top of the All Time Tennis Mountain and arguably the greatest of all time. 5-7, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5), 3-6, 16-14.The 30 games in the fifth set established a record for the most games played in any set in a Wimbledon singles final. The previous overall record for games in a set was 24, and 16 games for a decisive fifth set...unbelievable! The longest finals in Wimbledon history.
This match was just a fight with two great competitors both whom relied on huge serves t bail themselves out of trouble. The conditioning of both the finalists was truly amazing there was no let up no giving in. Roddick was still serving at speeds of 136 and 133mph. At times it looked like the net was going to fall with the power behind some of the first serves. I am not a big fan of Andy Roddick. I found his attitude in the past to be that of a jerk, spoiled, a bad winner and an even worse loser. His emotions would get the better of him and when he pouted he did nothing to help his image. Also, perhaps I am little jealous of him as his wife is SI Swimsuit model Brooklyn Decker. But today I feel for the guy, he played the match of his life and really only made 1 mistake...literally 1 mistake and that was all Federer needed to seal the deal. He played composed, kept his cool and unfortunately someone had to loose - deserving or not.
This was like the song from the Lamb Chop song except instead of the Song the never ends it was game that never ends...it just goes on an on my friends.
Any way you look at it the last 2 Wimbledon finals have been instant classics! Bank on this though not everything comes in three’s. There will have to be something ridiculous to happen next year to even come close to what we have seen.
We were just lucky to have gotten the chance to see these matches and this player.
Congratulations Roger Federer.
Thursday, July 02, 2009
Two team owners won’t put Jeremy Mayfield in their cars this weekend at Daytona International Speedway, one because of sponsor concerns and the other because Mayfield is "marked" following his legal battle with NASCAR.
By many accounts Mayfield isn’t the most liked guy in the garage and also has a rep for being a little bit of a party guy. That alone is not a bad thing but having a few drinks and getting drunk is a far cry from doing Meth.
Big name drives such as Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson have filed affidavit expressing their feelings about having their lives endangered by having someone racing on a track agents them who may be driving at a less then sober state. He will be tested as soon as he shows up at the next race whether he drives or enters a car. The problem is it takes close to 4 days to properly run A and B samples to avoid any false results. A test on Saturday doesn’t get results until Wednesday and that doesn’t do any good.
Even though the sport has alcohol companies sponsoring cars like Bud, Coors and Miller. They are more socially responsible and accepted. You do not nor do you want cars sponsored by Ricky’s Meth Lab Owners and Dealers, although the colour scheme on them would probably be cool and make for a nice die cast.
As far as the Heatley situation goes I am not in the majority of calling him out as much as everyone else. Sure I am a little disappointed that nothing came from all the talk and speculation about going to Edmonton but only a little. After looking further into the deal it began to look less and less great from an Ottawa perspective. I was never a Penner fan, and questioned the offer sheet that he was signed to by Kevin Lowe, Smid is a decent young player and a nice piece coming back and Andrew Cogliano is a decent player but I have been looking at him with Maze and Gold coloured glasses from his Michigan days and thinking that he is a better player then what he is.
The $4 million bonus that has had to be paid to Heatley sucks from an Ottawa perspective but maybe it allows the Sens to get a bit better of a deal and be able to either get a better player or pick or maybe move out a little more money by throwing in a Jason Smith, Chris Kelly or Christoph Schubert contract into the mix and freeing up and recouping some of the $4 mil. If that doesn’t happen then either another team needs to step up or there will have to be some major Reconstruction to the bridge that was burned to have him back in Ottawa at the start of camp.
In an update on the 2 team showdown of my Western Conference favorite between the St. Louis Blues and the LA Kings there is little to report just yet. Both teams were very quiet yesterday with the Blues only adding Ty Conklin in net. LA still has a lot of space left which is important going forward but showed good restraint in not spending money recklessly and overpaying on either risky guys or over hyped players. Having a plan and sticking to it is impressive. Sometimes the move not made is the best move. I will give it a little longer as there are still lots of mid level free agents left out there that may sign but also may come at more of a reasonable price.