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Should Have Been in the 2010 NBA Dunk Contest

15 Feb

The NBA All Star Slam Dunk Contest Sucked this year. Maybe it’s time to consider some good dunkers not good enough to play in the NBA. Case and point: Taurian Fontenette

Weekend Sports Update

9 Jun

Seth: This weekend was packed with big sports moments, allowing many people to take their minds off Hillary and Barack (although she clearly wants all the attention). Here is a quick rundown:

Saturday was the day many horse racing fans and non-fans alike were waiting for with excitement: The Belmont Stakes. As the last race of the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing, it was here that many people were expecting history to be made. The Triple Crown is a series of three races for three year old horses. Winning the entire series is commonly considered the greatest accomplishment in horse racing.

After winning the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes (the first two races of the Triple Crown), Big Brown was by far the favorite to win the Belmont Stakes, and therefore make history by completing the Triple Crown for the first time in some thirty years. Instead he went the way of Smarty Jones in 2004 who won the first two races but was unable to finish the feat. In some ways, Big Brown’s failure reminded me of the New England Patriots who won every game last season except for the one that counted the most. Incidentally, they had their first mini-camp this weekend, coming together for the first time since their tremendous disappointment. But let’s not forget Da’ Tara, the winner of the race who also had the longest odds.

In slightly more popular news, the Boston Celtics went up on Ray’s boys 2-0. Both these teams have tremendous talent, and obviously the Lakers have a bona fide playmaker/game-winner in Kobe. But the Celtics have offensive threats everywhere, not to mention the best defense in the league. This post season both the Celts and Lakers have had more success at home, and expect a lot of fight from the Lakers when the series continues Tuesday in LA. I give it to the Celtics in 5.

Finally I want to recognize Jimmy Rollins, a player for my hometown Phillies. He’s become somewhat of a star here, winning the National League’s MVP award last year. We love him because he’s got both the heart and bravado of Allen Iverson, a longtime favorite in this championship-starved town. And not unlike AI, at times he likes to do things his way, on his time. So on Thursday he was benched after the fourth inning for failing to hustle to first after hitting a popup to the Reds’ shortstop with two outs in the third. In an era when too many sports stars use their status and their talent as excuses for failing to play 100% every time, it was refreshing for Rollins to own up and take responsibility, saying:

[There] are two rules: be on time and hustle. I broke one of them today… Three strikes and I’m out.

Whoever thought that we’d be congratulating an adult for acting like and adult? Well, that’s all folks. Do something spectacular for your future this week.

Congressional Hearings On Professional Sports – Tax Payers Strike Out

29 Feb

Barry Bonds

Seth: Recently, Congress has made a lot of headlines investigating the use of steroids in professional sports, especially baseball. After giving
sworn testimony to a House committee that conflicted with two other
witnesses, Roger Clemens faces a possible investigation by the FBI.
Many people including sports writer and ESPN personality Tony
Kornheiser think the committee has gone too far. On Wednesday night’s PTI
he argued that the imprisonment of athletes for lying under oath about
steroids use is not in the public interest. He referenced sprinter
Marion Jones’ six month sentence as a sentence that was inappropriate
following her public humiliation.

Where do he, and others get off suggesting lying under oath shouldn’t be a crime punishable by prison time? Or, are they right to say Congress has no business investigating steroids use in pro sports?

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Ray: I’m glad that we’ve decided to address this topic because I think it’s insane that Congress is wasting tax payers dollars investigating professional sports. These are not important hearings and they serve as no benefit to the American public.

The 8,000 pound whale in the room is that American’s obviously feel like there are better things that Congress can be doing with their time. I mean, Katrina victims are still suffering, the economy is stalling, crime is rising in inner cities, and the list goes on and on. I don’t see how our elected officials can justify chasing Roger Clemens around and even going as far as committing the FBI to this case. It’s ridiculous.

If the members of Congress are so concerned with performance enhancing drugs and the athletes that use them, then they should retire from their elected posts and pursue careers as commissioners of the various leagues. And somebody has to ask why they aren’t going after pro-wrestling, ice skating, or surfing. I think we all know that the answer is that the Congressmen involved in the matters of major professional sports are simply looking for attention.

When all of this madness settles, I just hope that voters remember what their representatives spent their time doing. That’s all I really care to say about about this.

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Seth: I agree. I don’t know why Congress is investigating steroid use and I also agree that it bears no positive impact on society. There is something to be said for the way professional sports are ingrained in our society, and generally we ought to desire to keep them pure. I also have to acknowledge that the tremendous amount of public dollars that finance stadiums across the nation do complicate matters but at the end of the day should not compel the federal government to act. Roger Clemens is baseball’s problem. If they don’t care to deal with him, fans and the media will pass judgment as consumers.