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A Sports Medley…..

by Trevor Freeman

Ever since March Madness ended, we as a sports nation have been in a funk. It was a long couple of weeks, but we are snapping out of it in a big way with the NFL Draft on the horizon and the NBA playoffs heating up. Baseball is in full swing. I know I am pretty pumped that my Athletics have gotten out of the gate at 10-9 (generally my A’s like to start 2-17 and 11 games out of first). With all this going on, I sat down and tried to compose an article on a number of topics. However, I once again ran into a brick wall at every turn. Yes, writer’s block was affecting me and there was only one way to snap out of. Without further ado, here is our fourth “Sports Medley”.
14. Ever since my little sister moved to London for work and has gotten herself immersed into the Premiership I have been mildly intrigued. Hearing tales of drunkenness, hooliganism and an undying love of “her” Arsenal’s battles with the other top squads had me feeling like I was missing the boat. That has led to me watching the Premiership every Sunday at 11:00 for their live telecasts. After two months………I can tell you that I am hooked. The games are actually more entertaining than a regular season baseball game not involving the Oakland A’s and the fans have an NCAA feel to them. I have chosen a team to root for. I would do an article as to how I chose it like Bill Simmons did, but quite frankly I do not have the time to do the research or the energy to explain why a team like Watford is out.

I want some feedback from all you soccer fans out there. Let me know what you think of my choice and my rationale behind it. Without further ado, I am adopting……….

the Blackburn Rovers

Here is the rationale behind my pick:

-The Rovers won the Premiership in 1995 so they are not a team that has been down on its luck for a long time. They have also won 6 FA Cups so there is some solid tradition on their side.

-Manchester United is a major rival. Since Manchester United is considered the New York Yankees of the Premiership, it is nice to root for a team considered to be one of their biggest adversaries.

-Blackburn is a little city that is known for their blue-collar fans and dirty team. Kind of like the Oakland A’s.

-The Rovers are not a big money team yet they find a way to compete, just like the A’s (although the A’s are far more successful as they have won 9 World Series and are generally assumed to make the playoffs each season). Blackburn made the FA Cup semis and had Chelsea on the ropes. Some bad officiating cost them that game. I watched and my love of Blackburn was born on that day.

-Their nickname is the “Rovers”. I like rooting for a team nicknamed the “Rovers”.

-Their goalie is Brad Friedel and he is an American. Any team that has an American in their most important spot is a team worth pulling for.

13. I’d like to induct “Dancing With The Stars” Edyta Sliwinska into the “Girls who start arguments between me and my fiancé” Hall of Fame. My goodness. I’m not sure how John Ratzenberger explains practicing dancing with her to his wife. If you haven’t watched her dance around in a skimpy outfit then quite frankly you are missing the boat on what has been riveting television. They should start filming “Showgirls 2” and cast her in the lead role.

12. My favorite part of the NBA Draft process is reading that guys like Wilson Chandler, Roy Bright, Daequan Cook, Shaun Pruitt and Charles Rhodes have made themselves eligible for the NBA Draft. That is like me announcing that I have made myself available to cohost “Pardon The Interruption”. Or Wilmer Valderrama announcing that he has made himself available to star in “Spiderman 4” should Tobey Maguire give the fourth installment a no-go. Seriously guys…..thanks for the announcement. No…..I wouldn’t go hiring an agent just yet…..you may want to think about that college education.

11. Is it really necessary to spend thirty minutes each episode of Sportscenter on a Yankee-Red Sox rivalry that 90% of the country not only couldn’t give a flying f*ck about but actively dislikes? Seriously…..the NBA playoffs are on…….the NHL playoffs are on…..nobody cares if A-Rod parked it off Schilling in April.

10. Is there anybody else watching the NBA Playoffs and wondering why more people aren’t picking Detroit to win? The Pistons are quietly taking care of business right now. This series with Orlando looks like a team of high school players playing a team of fifth graders.

9. I’m not sure who is more disappointed. Cubs fans with Alfonso Soriano or fans of “The Sopranos”.

(Just as a note, I’ll never understand why they didn’t have “Johnny Sack” and “Tony Soprano” engage in a full-scale war. “Johnny Sack” was the second best character on the show to “Tony” and they just wasted him. It was like having Huston Street available in the bullpen but making the move for Jay Witasick instead. Not only did the writers of this show lose their fastball a couple seasons ago, but it seems to have went quickly.

8. Words cannot describe how I feel about Rich Harden and Milton Bradley going back on the DL. There’s a real sense of disappointment right now. Both of these guys should not only be All-Stars, but considered in the top 3-5 at their respective positions. Especially Harden. He may well have the best stuff in all of baseball.

7. The University of Alabama had 92,000 attend their Spring Scrimmage. “We talking about practice, not a game, practice.”

6. If I were going to push my chips all-in on any team in the Western Conference, I think the Houston Rockets would be my team. I love the way Tracy McGrady is playing right now and Yao Ming is the best center left on the Western side. Most of all, the Rockets are an example of a team carefully constructed with solid role players surrounding two stars. Chuck Hayes, Shane Battier, Luther Head, Juwan Howard and Rafer Alston all seem to have a sense of their roles and how to help the team. Most of all, I think the city of Houston probably deserves this as they have to go through another season of watching Mario Williams while cursing/daydreaming about Reggie Bush and Vince Young.

5. There’s unpleasant…..and then there’s going to be the way Alex and Mookie treat “Dreamz” on this week’s Survivor. I can’t wait. We may see our first ever reality television “Code Red”.

4. The MLB Extra Innings package has afforded me the great luxury of being able to listen to every single home team’s announce crew. If I had to rank teams I would want to hear announcing a baseball game, it would go:

1. Dave Niehaus and whoever they stick in the booth with him (Seattle Mariners….the only time I don’t mind not getting the A’s announcers. Last year Niehaus was great with Dave Henderson. This year has some new guys in the booth, but it’s still high quality. If there was ever a guy who should be calling big games, it is him.)

2. Glen Kuiper and Ray Fosse (Oakland A’s….Fosse in particular may be the best color guy in the game.)

3. Ken Harrelson and Darrin Jackson (Chicago White Sox…..Harrelson is extremely underrated)

4. Gary Cohen, Ron Darling and Keith Hernandez (New York Mets)

55. Joe Buck and Tim McCarver

133. Jon Miller and Joe Morgan

3. I’m very close to becoming the first sportswriter this week to not include the words “Alex” and “Rodriguez” in an article. Can I get a round of applause from the 49 other states?

2. I’m sorry…….I just can’t buy into Oscar De La Hoya having any chance of beating Floyd Mayweather Jr. De La Hoya doesn’t have the power to drop Mayweather Jr. It’s going to be a classic boxing match and Mayweather Jr. has more hand speed and is the better boxer. The guy who beats Mayweather Jr. is the guy who can take four punches and land one, but the one he lands is a stinger.

If they made me the Commissioner of Boxing………which they should, I would have somebody working full-time to try and get Jermain Taylor and Floyd Mayweather Jr. into a ring at 160. They could each have a tune-up beforehand, but that’s a fight that could happen. At the same time you have somebody working full-time to make sure the winner of Winky Wright-Bernard Hopkins fights the winner of Joe Calzaghe-Mikkel Kessler (when it happens…..which HBO will make sure of).

1. If the Golden State Warriors beat the Dallas Mavericks……….well I would rank that as the greatest moment the franchise has had since I have been following them. On the unlikely scale, it would rank with “Boston” Brian Worth getting to first base with Larissa Meek on “Average Joe 2” and finishing as the runner-up in the whole competition.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me at [email protected]

4 replies on “A Sports Medley…..”

comment I don’t care who is playing, European soccer…er…football…kicks ASS. Sometimes I think they are magicians…honestly.

Harden, Bradley and I have love-hate relationships. I love that they both are unbelievable players (Harden’s stuff is downright Santanaish and Bradley hits BOMBS…that one to straightaway center in Oakland whenever it was earlier this season was ridiculous…and i LOVE how he sprints after hitting 2nd base on his trots)…but i HATE how they are ALWAYS hurt!!!

92,000 people at a college football game is unbelievable…I think that’s more than the city it was played in has people in the population.

Even though A-Rod is getting too much coverage you can’t deny his amazing, unhuman athletic ability. It’s fun to talk about.

I know you’re gonna hate me for this but I don’t like the A’s announcers very much…BUT if its any comfort I used to like “Kruk and Kuipe” for the Giants until i realized that 95% of their broadcasts are about the fans and the features of AT&T Park…

As a new boxing fan, I CAN’T FRICKIN WAIT FOR THE NEXT SEASON OF THE CONTENDER! best reality show ever made…

And don’t you mean ‘when’ the Warriors beat the Mavs??!?Q?!?!?!?!?!!?!??!?!

Nice medley.

Thank you I have the same relationship when it comes to Bradley and Harden.  They are just so good, but they can’t stay on the field and it is killing me.  I’m in the camp that next offseason we have to at least consider switching Harden to closer and then dealing Street to plug holes.  BTW…….how awesome was Dallas Braden yesterday.  If he can be what he is hyped up being the rotation with Haren, Blanton, Braden, Loiaza and Gaudin wouldn’t be a bad thing.  It sets you up down the road as well as there is good youth.

Tonights game is huge for the Warriors, if they can steal one more in Dallas, there is no way they lose this series.  Hopefully Avery Johnson keeps trying to engage us in a smallball game, because that totally works to our advantage.    

I will give it to A-Rod he has been great.  Problem for him is as of today the Yanks are in last place by themselves.  You have to wonder about the bad karma that follows him around.  He finally steps it up in New York and the pitching staff completely falls apart.

Edyta very very nice. When the hell did Cliffy get so cool?

I can’t believe you just made me go on Youtube and watched 3 clips of Dancing with the Stars.

Edyta She is absolutely ridiculous.  I’m surprised she is even allowed to dance around in those skimpy outfits on broadcast televison.  Teenage guys everywhere have agreed to watch this show with their moms specifically because of her.  I’m really surprised Mrs. Clavan lets Cliff get away with this.  She is scorching.  Did you see the “reality show” part where she was teaching Cliff how to dance in the plaid shirt and short-shorts?  That segment right there sealed her Woman We Love nomination.  My goodness.  The producers of that show are heroes for airing that.

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