Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fireworks like it's 1936

So we all just got off out 4th of July weekend… None of us are ready to go back to work yet… the sports world is moving slow… and football was on the screen Sunday morning teasing me that it is 16 days until the first training camp is scheduled in all of the NFL. Since you are not working at this moment (and either hung over, on lunch break, unemployed, or just extending your already extended July 4th holiday weekend), enjoy this blog that actually has some juicy topics and idea’s that Sports Illustrated decided to take a week off on. Sit back, relax, and give your eyes a reading extension they so desperately need after a weekend of drinking, fireworks, and awkward family interactions. Let’s get it started.

Back on Monday, after I had previously said she was going to break the match streak, she got dumped the day after her praise on this blog site. Serena’s 34 match streak was snapped by Sabine Lisicki in the middle portions of Wimbledon which ended the chances of an American finishing in the Wimbledon Finals. Let’s face it America, we are just not with it in the rest of world when it comes to tennis. The talk of our society getting softer because Americans don’t dominate tennis anymore is similar to that of how the world has finally caught up to us when it comes to sports such as basketball, baseball, and golf. We aren’t getting softer, the rest of the world is just getting better. As much of a bummer it is to not see an American dominating tennis courts across the world, I also understand how much better some of the top tennis athletes are these days. For an American to jump to that top stage it would take a serious Tiger Woods effort and the last time that happened, since Tiger Woods jumped onto the scenes back in the mid-90’s. Until I see a young superstar phenomenon on the David Lettermen show hitting 70 mph serves at the age of 6, I won’t have faith yet.

Speaking of the rest of the world, Andy Murray was the first British tennis player to win the Wimbledon Championship since 1936 (77 years). I will admit, I am not an expert at tennis, but if you weren’t riveted by that performance against the best tennis player in the world (Novak Djokovic) with the crowd at the back of Andy Murray the way it was, you clearly don’t have a pulse and need to be sent back to Mars because hairs were standing on every winning point Murray scored. Also with the quality of tennis and the intensity that was being played with on every volley, I was absolutely enthralled with the effort and was asking for more by the end of the match. Granted, this is the Super Bowl of tennis, and this quality of tennis probably isn’t an everyday thing, but the intensity of that match and the way both players was dishing it out between one another could be put in a dictionary next to definition of sports. That was some absolutely amazing stuff from Andy Murray on Sunday.

There needs to be a wink and a nod to Marion Bartoli as well. I didn’t watch the Women’s Championship match at Wimbledon, but I did watch the Venus VS documentary on ESPN celebrating the success of Title IX over the past 40 years since the inception of allowing women to play in collegiate sports. Considering the amount of work Venus put into trying to get Women equal pay in the Wimbledon Championship payout and eventually succeeding, I have grown to appreciate Venus Williams a lot more after that documentary, and understanding the importance of what she did, it should help you recognize that the difference between men and women competition in the realm of tennis is no different from one another. Maybe next year I’ll check out a bit of the women final next year, whether there is a Williams sister in it or not.

The 4th of July is a holiday known for its flare, heat, and (the most American thing ever) gluttony. Joey Chestnut only enhanced the ideal of how fat our country is getting especially with breaking his own record of 68 hotdogs in 12 minutes now having the record of 69 hotdogs in 12 minutes and winning his 7th straight hotdog eating contest. Let me make this very clear everybody, Joey Chestnut is not an athlete. He’s a human being that puts hotdogs in water, helping them slide down his gullet, to give America a spectacle of pure gluttony that we have a serious problem with. We shower these pigs with glory and give them respect for shoving processed food into their ever churning stomach when our country doesn’t have the heart to accept the problems of obesity in our youth. The reason why I hit this topic so hard and spit the truth people often avoid is because it is problem. It’s summer time! Go outside! If you are reading this blog and feel out of shape, go on a walk, go on a run, and get active. It is summertime, and I could care less if it is 170 degrees out because if you sit outside for 10 minutes in that type of weather, you’ll lose 10 pounds. Get fit America! I’ll now step down from my soap box.

The NBA this week was overshadowed by the Dwight Howard saga so most of the other news was a side of fries. Tyreke Evans was traded to the Pelicans in a three team deal, Josh Smith signed with the Detroit Pistons, and Andre Iguodala was dealt to the Golden State Warriors making them look like a pretty attractive team coming into the 2013-2014 season. There were more moves, but we all know the biggest fish in the pond was Dwight. The Houston Rockets signed the biggest baby superstar in all of sports and only his actions can save him now. America, name the last big time superstar to flee from the money, spotlight, legacy, and the best franchise in his respective sport? I can’t think of one. Dwight is going to a better team at the moment, and I don’t think anybody would dispute that, the real problem here is this guy is being given a free pass to leave an opportunity of greatness after he told the media he was SO EXCITED TO BE IN L.A. This guy is a complete head case and will become a no name a year from today. Quote me on that. Who leaves the best opportunity in sports to play on a team that has less pressure to give themselves a better chance to succeed? Do true warriors decide to fight on less powerful grounds? Here’s a better analogy, do great division one athletes want to play football at Alabama A&M over the University of Alabama? Dwight Howard chose to play at a less powerful franchise because he didn’t get what he wanted and because his head started overhearing the hate, he flied like the little girl he is! The guy is a 16 year old girl locked in a 7’0 man’s body! I guarantee he will find a way to dig the Rockets into a hole of despair through the burying of his coach, his teammates, and whenever he gets injured he’ll play through it and blame his lack of energy on his “ailing” shoulders. I don’t know if you’ve seen this man Dwight Howard, but this guy looks like he’s sculpted by the sculptures of god. With the amount of pampering these athletes get, and how much treatment they receive and the money they make, with how Dwight Howard looks, all I see is a big excuse. From now on, I’ll be calling Dwight Howard “The Big Excuse.” That’s all this guy is. There is nothing that shows me he has the maturity beyond a teenager. To be quite frank, it makes sense considering he never went to college. So you really can’t blame him for that, but at the end of the day, come on man… seriously? YOU LEFT THE LAKERS. Let’s anoint someone else as the best center in the league and get this pre-teen girl off his pedestal. All you need to do is read his constant comments towards the media about his “image” and how they portrayed him as “flip-flopping.” Seriously Dwight? You are the most talented powerful big man in the league and you are worried about 5’5 media heads writing about how you were flip flopping when you really weren’t? Who freaking cares what other people think! There’s no wonder Kobe freaking hated you. You are the most pansy athlete I’ve ever seen with the amount of stardom you have, and I’m going to rip you on every single chance I can because guess what Dwight, superstars don’t shy away from the bright lights. You did.

Let’s get to some awesome news that I absolutely loved this week when it came to the NBA. Brad freaking Stevens! If you don’t love this move, you have got to be on some serious drugs. This guy is the definition of class and critical thinking. The former Butler head coach is only 36 years old and received a 6 year 22 million dollar deal this week to coach the Boston Celtics. Doesn’t that just sound smooth and almost like it came out of a movie box office? I would not be shocked if this guy became the next Gregg Popovich with his players. The amount of interaction he had with his players at Butler will be insurmountable at the NBA level, especially with the rebuilding they will be going through over at least the next couple seasons. This guy will be studying other teams, he’ll be studying systems that will work in the NBA through a “team” mentality instead of this garbage “pass the ball to the superstar and watch” B.S. that the NBA has gone through since the retirement of Jordan. I personally am hoping that Brad Stevens becomes the savior of this league and ultimately makes the NBA a more watchable product then it has been the past 15 years. If he can bring a hint of the college game to the NBA, we’ll see the NBA start marketing the way we all wish they would; the team.

Let’s get to baseball before we head out of here. Homer Bailey threw another no-hitter on Tuesday and he’s the first player to throw the last no-hitter as well as the next no-hitter in baseball in consecutive seasons since Nolan Ryan in the 70’s. With the amount of no-hitters occurring these days, they are almost a dime a dozen, but non-the-less, it was the first one of the season and it was well deserved. Congrats to Homer Bailey! To the All-Star selections, the American League pretty much got it right. Those fans got the starting lineup correct and the reserves were selected properly. The National League, not so much. The starting lineup is nowhere near who should be starting and the popularity contest was quite evident in the voting for this team. 

Get off this blog and go back to work, outside, and get in shape America. See y’all next week.

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