Home > Uncategorized > Running Off at the Electronic Mouth II

Running Off at the Electronic Mouth II

Rule #76: No excuses. Play like a champion.

So, I don’t have much of an excuse for not blogging much in the past two weeks. In that time, I’ve missed talking about a number of sports stories, which I would like to cover in very abbreviated versions right … about …

NOW!

  • I missed nearly all of the classic match between Roger Federer and Andy Roddick at Wimbledon on July 5 as I
    Enjoy it while you can.

    Enjoy it while you can.

    was flying from Orlando to my new-old home in Southern California. When I got in, it was already 9-9 in the fifth set.

The match equaled two qualities from last year’s final between Federer and Rafael Nadal: Tremendous overall play and my feeling about Federer at the end. Granted the result was different, but I couldn’t help but think about the slow decline of Federer, even as he raised that trophy.

Before this latest Wimbledon final, Roddick and Federer had faced each other 20 times professionally. Federer won 18 of those matches, and in their eight previous grand slam meetings, Federer had won all of them in fewer than five sets.

And now, not only does Roddick push Roger to a fifth set, but they play an unprecedented 30 games in that set? Yes, Federer still won, became the most accomplished tennis player in grand slam history and reclaimed the ranking of No. 1 in the world, but this was just another sign that we have seen the best from the sport’s greatest player.

Man, I am pessimistic!

  • The Cleveland Cavaliers gave how much money to Anderson Varejao??? Really??? $50 million for a player whose biggest on-court quality is hustle.

You know another player’s whose best on-court quality was hustle? Mark Madsen.

First Shaq, now this for the Cavaliers. Cleveland is setting itself up very well for a deep run into the second round of the NBA playoffs in 2010. If this is all the Cavs are going to do in an effort to “improve” the team, why don’t they just release LeBron now and save everyone in the city the trouble of waiting another through disappointing season to find out from which squad King James will be tearing their hearts out in 2011.

How did he not get $50 million?

How did he not get $50 million?

  • UFC got exactly what it did and did not need during its pay-per-view bash on Saturday night. UFC 100 drew nearly 11,000 fans in Vegas and more than one million buys at home. It showcased it’s biggest stars to many people who were giving the sport a shot for the first time.

    The problem is that the sport’s biggest star — Brock Lesnar — completely lost his mind at the end of his title match, putting on a show that was more representative of WWE than UFC. He head-butted the cage, flipped off fans and drank Coors beer on a show sponsored by Bud Light. Hmmm, eerily reminiscent of a Stone Cold Steve Austin performance.

    Lesnar later apologized.

    But this is a sport that has eyes on being among the most popular in the U.S., up there with basketball, baseball and football. For that to happen, it has to become more, yes, fan-friendly with people other than just the 16-39 demographic. I’m sure hardened UFC fans loved Lesnar’s display. It was aggression at it’s testosterone-packed, no-holds-barred best.

    But outside of that niche, the sport still has a lot of growing to do. Somehow in the future, the sport will need to sell out in order to get where it wants to be in the mind of sports-hungry America. Lesnar better get on board.

    • Roy Halladay said he would consider a trade to the National League because he “rather hit than face (Derek) Jeter, A-Rod, (Hideki) Matsui and Teixeira.”

    Halladay is 16-5 in his career against the Yankees with a 2.90 ERA. I think what he meant to say is that he would rather be anywhere in two weeks than Toronto. The Yankees aren’t his problem.

    • San Fransisco Giants pitcher Jonathan Sanchez threw a no-hitter on Friday. He’s always had good stuff and the ability to strike batters out at a good clip, but you don’t see a lot of no-hitters from pitchers who were about to lose their job.

    And really, no-hitters are a great event when they occur, but it can be a little misleading. Can you tell me who were the three pitchers that threw no-hitters in 2007?

    If you can, good for you. You watch too much baseball. That’s an oxymoron.

    It not, see for yourself.

    That performance earned Sanchez about six to eight more starts in the Giants’ rotation and a spot in the MLB record books. Not bad for the present.

    • Allen Iverson doesn’t fit into anything the Clippers like to run. He’s not the player he used to be on offense or defense. He isn’t a good influence on a young team that is rebuilding (again) with Blake Griffin.

    And the Clippers will definitely sign him.

    Who cares how he plays? It's all about the Benjamins to Donald.

    Who cares how he plays? It's all about the Benjamins to Donald.

    Yes, for everything on the floor, it makes no sense. But don’t forget that this is a team owned by Donald Sterling, a man who is more concerned with money than the IRS. And I’m sure that some people in L.A. will be interested to see what Allen Iverson can do in a Clippers uniform and with Griffin.

    And to Sterling, that could mean money. Higher attendance, more concessions, more promotions, dolla dolla bill, y’all!

    It would only cost the Clippers the mid-level exception of $5.8 million to sign Iverson. A far cry from what he could bring the team financially in one season. In the end, it’s a big name and a profit. To Sterling, that will always be more important than winning a championship.

    Much like Al Davis with the Oakland Raiders, the Clippers will not even come close to sniffing a possible NBA title until Sterling gives up majority ownership or dies.

    • The MLB can’t have a home run derby that last for three hours. Maybe 10 years ago, that could work, but not anymore. This country has been too spoiled by the home run. The inflated rates at which the ball leaves the yard has fans seeing the home run as an expected part of the game, not a treat.

    And when you combine that attitude with less-than-marquee participants such as Nelson Cruz, Joe Mauer, Carlos Pena and Brandon Inge, you are going to get a lot of people tuning out what used to be a fantastic spectacle during the All-Star break.

    Unless a performance such as Bobby Abreu in 2005 or Josh Hamilton in 2008 comes along, there just isn’t anything special about the home run derby any longer.

    The only thing saving the derby right now is that there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING else to watch in the world of sports on the Monday before the All-Star Game.

    At least Cruz and winner Prince Fielder hit some pretty majestic shots.

    Oh, and Brandon Inge, thanks for playing.

    • I haven’t been on a bike since nearly puncturing my left temple on some sharp rocks as I fell off my red tricycle as a 4-year-old, but I’ll still say this: Lance Armstrong better win this Tour de France.

    I’ve heard people debate about whether or not it would be OK if he wasn’t wearing the maillot jaune at the end of the Tour. What would that accomplish? Let’s say he finishes where he is right now in the Tour: third. Some people will call it quite a comeback for a man who had taken four years off before coming back to the sport’s most prestigious race.

    But you know what a I call a third-place finish for Lance Armstrong? A third-place finish. He has to win. That’s what Lance Armstrong does at the Tour de France. If he takes second or anything less, he certainly won’t be satisfied and neither should we.

    • And lastly, no matter how unappealing the end of his life was, …
    ... rest in peace.

    ... rest in peace.

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