Archive for June, 2012

This is for the Ladies

Posted: June 29, 2012 in Sports

I was sitting here trying to figure out what I wanted to write my next blog about. I don’t like writing about the normal sports stories that you can read basically in any sports blog on the internet. In my opinion, there’s already enough people writing about the NBA draft or giving a breakdown of the players their favorite team selected. So while I’m sitting here giving myself a headache, I am scrolling through my twitter timeline and it hits me, there are a lot of diehard female sports fans out there. Now let me make this clear, these are not women who are just tweeting about a cute player or just saying things like, “let’s go team”, no, these are women that really know their stuff. They are cussing like sailors at how the Phillies found a way to lose another game or talking about being excited to go to Eagles training camp to catch the competition going on at certain positions and they are arguing back and forth with other fans on who they think should be the starting mlb for the Eagles this season. I can talk about sports 24/7 and over the years the only people I could talk sports to were guys. None of my female friends wanted to receive a phone call from me screaming like a fool because the Phillies just signed Cliff Lee for the second time or how we stole Nnamdi Asomugha from the Cowboys during free agency last year but do you know what, I knew that I had a lot of female friends that were just as excited about these two events as I would and I knew where to find them. A few months ago, my friend Kei and I were on Septa heading to WFC to see a Sixers game and we were having a conversation about the Eagles. The bus driver asked us what we were talking about and we told him. He was really shocked. He said, “If I didn’t know better, I would have thought you were two men sitting there having that conversation”. I took that as a compliment. I do know though, there are still many, many men out there that feel women still don’t know anything about sports or we just try to talk about them to be cute and get attention from guys. While this may be true in some cases, it is false most of the time. Another story which I still laugh at every time I think about it. One of my twitter friends (God bless her) is a diehard Eagles fan but a few months ago, she asked who Cliff Lee was and the other day, she said she had to google Chase Utley to see what he looked like because she was going to a Phillies game. I asked her if she was serious and she said, “yes”. I guess sometimes I forget that not every female fan likes every sport like I do and I guess I can get a little annoyed when they ask things like that.

I did some searching on the web and found that 46% of MLB fans are now women and we also make up 44% of the NFL fanbase. Wow! That is almost half of the fanbase of the 2 biggest sports in this country! Ten years ago these numbers would have shocked me but not anymore. I think that female fans are probably the most passionate sports fans nowadays and also the most vicious. I’ve seen a few of them thrown out of Lincoln Financial Field, not because they were drunk and acting up but because they got into a fight with an opposing fan who were talking mess about the Eagles. I’ve seen female fans, threaten to tase and beat players with bats on the Phillies (I swear it’s not me), when certain players pop up to an infielder or strikeout every time they come up to bat.

With all that said, I want to give a shoutout to all my passionate, diehard female fans out there. We love our teams unconditionally like they are our children. I have to also give a shoutout to all you narrow minded men out there that hate the fact that a lot of us know more about sports than you do! HA!!! Keep up the good work ladies!

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What Has Happened to the NBA

Posted: June 19, 2012 in Sports

In 1992, the greatest sports team ever to be assembled represented the United States in the Barcelona Olympics.  The Dream Team which just happened to be made up of arguably the best NBA players  of our times included the likes of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, David Robinson, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, Scottie Pippen, John Stockton, Karl Malone, Clyde the Glide Drexler and Chris Mullin.  Oh yea, I forgot the one college player who was selected to play on the team, Christian Laettner.  Eleven of the twelve members of this team (I’ll let you guess which one is left out) have been inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame. 

Watching the documentary of the Dream Team the other night made me realize how different the players were back then from the players now.  You knew when the Bulls and Pistons were going at it in those hard fought games, that they really and truly hated each other on and off the court.  Everyone thought it was going to be a problem for Jordan to play for Chuck Daly because of this hatred and if I recall Isaiah Thomas was left off the team because he was hated by the players and no one wanted him on it.  The reports were that it was a stipulation for Jordan to play.  You could see the hate and competiveness these players had towards each other when the team first came together and they were practicing.  Did this hate last, no.  They became a team in every sense of the word and formed lasting friendships.  It took them competing as one for their country for this to be accomplished. 

The players of the new NBA don’t understand rivalries.  They don’t understand that you are supposed to hate your opponent on and off the court.  I mean, these guys nowadays stand around before games talking and laughing with each other and hang out with each other when they’re not playing.  I’m sorry, I don’t like this.  I don’t want the players on my team schmoozing it up with players on the Celtics or Knicks.  I don’t want to see my players helping a player up after he knocks him down from a hard foul.  Let his ass lay there. Let his teammates pick him up.  How are you going to foul someone then give them a pat on the butt afterwards?  You wouldn’t see Bill Laimbeer doing something like that.   I miss the days of the knock down drag out fights between the Knicks and the Pacers.  I miss the days of players like Reggie Miller talking smack to all opposing players. 

Back in those days, you had the nasty, dirty, bad boys of the NBA, players like Laimbeer, Thomas, Rodman and Mahorn.  Damn, looking at my list of names, the most hated players all played for the Detroit Pistons.  These players were out for blood and always looking for a fight on the court.  You don’t see this type of player in the new NBA.  I think the closest thing we have to a villain in the NBA now would be Lebron James and it’s not even for the same reasons that I mentioned all of the above players.  There are no players that are just plain nasty and are ready to go out on the court and draw blood every game.  (Ron Artest doesn’t count, he’s mentally challenged).  These players nowadays would not make it in the NBA of the 80’s early 90’s.  None of them.  These players are too soft.  They cry over touch fouls and they cry when they’re called for a foul but then they are hee hee’ing and ha ha’ing it up after the game with opposing players.  Give me a break!

NBA players today are a bunch of prima donnas who think they are owed everything.  It’s a damn shame when a player has the nerve to say that he feels players who play in the Olympics should be compensated for their time.  To me, these players don’t play for the love of the game anymore.  They play for the money and fame. 

I miss the old NBA.  I miss players like the ones we had on the Dream Team. I know this is a new day and age and even though I’ve watched every Sixers game this year and am watching the NBA Finals, I’d be happy just sitting back and watching NBA Classics to see how the game should be played.

The Season from Hell

Posted: June 7, 2012 in Sports

I know a few weeks ago, I wrote a blog post stating I was taking a break from the Phillies.  Well that lasted about 4 innings.  I really wish I had the willpower to stick to my word because this team is killing me right now.  

I’ve been saying since the beginning of the season that I didn’t think the Phils were a good team, didn’t think they would find a way to turn it around and didn’t think they would make the playoffs.  People kept telling me everything was going to be ok, it’s early and when Ryan and Chase come back we will be fine.  I told them, they are expecting way too much from two guys who have not had a spring training plus we really have no clue when they will be back.  This team could be 10-15 games out by the time Chase and Ryan get back if they get back at all.  I’ve been told I’m overreacting.  Ok maybe I am overreacting a little bit. The team had a six game win streak going and they are actually starting to look like they might be finally getting their act together.  Yea, I think we have ourselves a good team here.   Let’s fast forward a few days now.

I really didn’t think things could get any worse for the Phillies, boy was I wrong.  The one thing this team did not need to happen, happened.  Our ace and arguably the best pitcher in baseball, Roy Halladay went on the DL for 6-8 weeks with a shoulder injury.  You are kidding me right?  Our best pitcher now has a shoulder injury!  This cannot be happening!  After the initial anxiety attack, I calmed down and realized this might not be a bad thing, we still have Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels and Vance Worley would be coming back soon.  Oh yea there’s also Joe Blanton and Kyle Kendrick who even though I do not understand how he’s still on this team, has pitched pretty good in spot starts this season.  Ok, ok, we can get through this.  They will hold the fort down until Roy comes back.  Guess what, I was wrong again.  Here we are on June 7, 2012 and the Phillies are now 6 games out of 1st place, have a 6 game losing streak and just finished getting swept in a 4 game series by the LA Dodgers.  Lost in all this insanity is the fact that Cliff Lee, who pitched a brilliant game on Tuesday Night, striking out 12 in 7 2/3 innings, still is without a win.  This team gave Lee a total of 1 run in that game and for the season in his nine starts, they have scored a whopping 16 runs for Lee.  I have sat here in disbelief over the last week watching this team leave runners stranded on base, have no patience at the plate against pitchers who are known to be wild, hit pop ups to the infielders and make stupid base running mistakes. Oh and I guess I forgot to mention, the one exciting player that I have enjoyed watching this season, the young player who was called up from the minors early to fill in for the injured Utley, is now on the 15 day disabled list with a lower back injury.  Yep, another one bites the dust.  

Someone asked me on twitter earlier, who I think is to blame for all this.  I gave him a quick answer which was, I blame the players.  It would be too easy to blame Charlie Manuel but really, I’m not sure what Charlie can do with this make shift team.  I don’t know what any manager could do with this team.  I blame the players because most of them have dealt with losing players to injuries before.  They know that they have to step up and do the job while their teammates are down.  I expect this from, Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino, Hunter Pence and Placido Polanco.  I would say Chooch but if it wasn’t for him, we would probably be 10 games out by now.  I will also blame the pitchers because with Halladay going down, they have not stepped up.  At a time when we need the starters to pitch deep into games, they are getting knocked out in the 6th/7th innings which leads to the awesome bullpen coming in to finish the game.  In  defense of the starting pitching though, I will say this.  You cannot expect them to go out there every night and shut a team out because the offense can only muster up one run.  

Now lastly and this is probably where I put most of the blame, I blame Ruben Amaro Jr.  When Ryan Howard went down with a torn achilles in game 5 of the NLDS last year, he did not do enough to get a player in here who would make up for 40hr and 140 rbi’s.  Did he really believe that Howard would be ready to play by opening day?  I’m not sure but he filled the roster with role players like Nix, Wiggington, Luna and Jim Thome. There was no backup plan for Ryan being out half of the season or longer.  When you have a player of his caliber, you almost have to find someone to replace him.  You need a good backup plan.  In my opinion, RAJ has totally screwed up this season with his offseason signings and non signings.  

As much as I love this team, I probably hate them equally right now.  I have no expectations of them and that is sad because this team was built to win championships and it looks like that window has closed and we will have to settle for just the one.  

Are Philly fans getting soft?

Posted: June 4, 2012 in Sports

I never in a million years thought I would be calling Philly fans soft but guess what, I am now.  Over the last week or so, I’ve seen too many fans do things that you would never see years ago.  I have seen fans cheering for a Mets pitcher to get a no hitter and then congratulate that pitcher when he got it.  I have also seen Philly fans cheer for a hockey team in the Stanley Cup Finals like they’ve been a fan for years just because ex Flyers are on the team.  What the hell is going on?  Philly fans do not do things like this!

I was told on Friday night to have class and be happy for Johan Santana for pitching the first no hitter in Mets history.  Excuse me but he is a Met.  I will never cheer for a Met for anything!  Now don’t get me wrong, I have cheered for perfect game this season and I cheered for Justin Verlander to record another no hitter this year against the Pirates but a Met?  That’s not going to happen.  Yes I sat here and prayed and yelled at the tv for the Cardinals to get a hit and break it up.  Yes I yelled and cursed when he got the no hitter.  All this while reading fellow Philly fans  tweets on twitter cheering for him.  I cannot tell you how outraged I was reading this crap.

Now let’s talk about all the Flyers fans cheering for the LA Kings like the Flyers are in the Stanley Cup.  Thank God the Flyers aren’t in the finals because I kind of think some of them would actually cheer for the Kings because of Richards, Gagne and Carter.  THEY ARE NO LONGER FLYERS.  THE KINGS ARE NOT THE FLYERS WEST!

I understand that some people have love for these players, hey, I have love for Allen Iverson and Brian Dawkins but I am not going to go out of my way to cheer for them to win a championship like Flyers fans are doing with these 3.  I’m really wondering if some of you are sitting in your living rooms right now with your face painted black and silver, wearing a Kings jersey with the Kings flag hanging out your window.

My point is, I am a Philadelphia sports fan and once you leave one of my teams, I’ll wish you luck but don’t expect me to sit here and cheer for you to win a championship with another team.  Brad Lidge, I will always love you for what you did in 2008 but you’re a Washington National now and I hope you never earn another save.