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Other Sports Archives

December 10, 2004
OTHER SPORTS: Season on Ice

I havenít been following the NHL lockout very closely at all, so I was kind of struck by what kind of financial problems the league must be having when the Playersí Association is making proposals to cut their own salaries by 24% (up from their 5% September proposal). Apparently, the main dispute is over whether to have a luxury tax or a salary cap. Scott Burnside has some more-informed analysis.

Iím glad I donít have Gary Bettmanís job.

Posted by The Mad Hibernian at 12:41 PM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
October 10, 2004
OTHER SPORTS: A Word From Joe Louis

Until John Hinderaker at Powerline pointed it out, I hadn't realized that the "he can run but he can't hide" line that President Bush has been using on the campaign trail and in Friday night's debate was actually coined by boxer Joe Louis. Another example of how sports shapes our language and view of the world. Go read Hindrocket's whole writeup on Louis and the phrase's origin.

(Of course, for historical accuracy it's not quite right to call Louis just "the Bomber" - he was known as the Brown Bomber (it was the 1930s-40s, after all; no need to sugarcoat the world Louis lived in and had to contend with)).

Posted by Baseball Crank at 10:07 AM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
September 14, 2004
POLITICS/OTHER SPORTS: Band of Ruggers

Eric McErlain takes apart one of the stupidest political arguments I have ever seen, this Bob Harris post at Tom Tomorrow's place showing a still photo of George W. Bush playing rugby at Yale and trying to make out Bush as some sort of dirty rugby player. I'm no expert on rugby, but it always seemed like one of those sports where the technical term for someone who never played dirty was "loser."

Anyway, I emailed Harris some time back - he never responded - to point to this David Pinto post:

[Peter] Gammons and Kerry played hockey against each other in prep school, and Peter told me once that Kerry was the dirtiest hockey player he ever saw.

Lesson: maybe you don't want to make this an issue. Although McErlain links back to a post where he quotes Denis Leary making Kerry out to be a weak-minded, vascillating showboat as a hockey player, at least in his later years. So who knows?

Anyway, the best line about the whole Bush rugby thing comes from a commenter at Michele's place back in mid-August:

It seems like absurdly too much effort to spend on a stupid 35-year old rugby picture, but I saw a post somewhere yesterday saying that, like a lot of sports action photos, it might not even be what it looks like at first glance. The implied physics of the picture (assuming Bush to be throwing a punch) would have Bush and his fist moving in opposite directions, not a great way to hit someone (but, hey, Bush is dumb, so that would fit, I suppose!)

And, of course, it's a devastating picture, ruining Bush's rugbycentric strategy, which he planned to kick off at the end of the convention when he'd be joined by a dozen former Yale rugby players, his "Band of Ruggers."

Heh.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 09:53 PM | Other Sports • | Politics 2004 | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
June 13, 2004
OTHER SPORTS: The Long Road Back

NY Newsday reports that Olympic figure skating champ Sarah Hughes, who's something of a folk hero in these parts (she lives two towns over from my house), is considering returning to competition. Judging from recent photos, though, Hughes will probably be fighting the uphill battle against competing after puberty that has done in so many female athletes in sports like figure skating, gymnastics, etc.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 10:59 AM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
May 22, 2004
BASEBALL/OTHER SPORTS etc.: Great Sports Moments

Michele asks for greatest sports moments. I'll repost my thoughts here. I'll agree with some of the moments cited by her commenters - Jose Canseco getting hit in the head with a ball and turning it into a home run is still the funniest thing that's ever happened. Bill Mazeroski's homer - ten years to the day before I was born - is tough to top for sheer instant drama and finality, especially when you consider the aura of invincability of those Yankees and the back-and-forth nature of that game and that series. And yes, I once had a poster on my wall of the famous Starks dunk over Jordan.

My personal favorite, of course, is still the bottom of the tenth inning of Game Six, 1986 World Series, specifically Bob Stanley's game-tying wild pitch. Close behind are Robin Ventura's "grand slam single" in the rain in 1999 and virtually every minute of the 1991 Super Bowl.

Probably the most electric moment from a sport I don't follow or, ordinarily, even like that much was Sarah Hughes' gold medal winning figure skating performance, because she single-handedly did what I thought couldn't be done in figure skating: overcome the expectations and grab victory through the sheer brilliance of a single performance. In other words, for one night, she actually made figure skating a real sport.

The most memorable ones I've seen in person: (1) Game Six of the Knicks-Heat series in 1997, when half the team (including Patrick) was suspended and the MSG crowd just tried to will the skeleton roster to victory; (2) Brad Clontz' wild pitch in the last scheduled game of the regular season in 1999 to send the Mets to a 1-game playoff with the Reds.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 01:22 AM | Baseball 2004 • | Basketball • | Football • | Other Sports | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
April 20, 2004
OTHER SPORTS: The Wrong Way Out

Two years ago, I wrote:

Whatever you think about the merits of a gay man in baseball coming out publicly, I can't possibly imagine a worse situation than 'outing' the star of a contending team in midseason against his will.

Obviously, this was a failure of imagination on my part, given the murder-for-hire story swirling around Mike Danton of the NHL's St. Louis Blues . . . if the stories around Danton are true - and they may well not be - there can't be anybody to be happy at this being the first public 'outing' of an active gay athlete in major team sports. See here for an example of a press release trying feverishly to spin this story as one about "homophobia" to get a sense of how unpleasant this whole thing is, or look at how hard some of the news stories are straining to avoid explaining the "relationship" Danton is purported to have had with his 'roommate.'

Anyway, I won't be following this bizarre saga, but Eric McErlain's all over it.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 06:48 AM | Other Sports | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
October 24, 2003
SPORTS: Drivel

If you're looking for a Fark.com-like site for sports, you might check out the newly-launched SportsDrivel.com.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 08:30 PM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
July 14, 2003
OTHER SPORTS: Tour de France Headline of the Year

I just can't improve on this one, from Laurence Simon at Amish Tech Support.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 11:44 PM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
July 05, 2003
OTHER SPORTS: Lewis-Klitscko

My wife and I finally broke down and decided to try HBO about two months ago, and one of the few dividends has been that we got to watch the Lennox Lewis-Vladimir Klitschko fight, which my brother-in-law had asked us to tape. Since that meant we couldn't change the channel (our cable box, displaying the soul of a monopolist, sabotages all efforts to record one show while watching another), and it was the night before we left on vacation, we wound up watching most of the fight.

I have to say, I was very pleasantly surprised. I'm not much of a boxing fan, and due to the migration of major prizefights to premium cable and pay-per-view, I hadn't actually seen a title fight live in maybe 20 years. But this was really a good fight, between two very tall heavyweights. What you ask for in any sporting event is suspense: a sense that the outcome is not entirely predetermined. This fight had it, and it also had action: these guys were actually landing a lot of punches, most of them to the side of the head (there were remarkably few body blows, perhaps due to the height of the two fighters), unlike my memories of heavyweight fights as orgies of gripping interrupted only sporadically by some fighting. Klitschko came out swinging early, and led in points throughout the fight. Lewis really looked out of it early, totally unprepared for the barrage, but around the third round he started to rally, and wound up opening a nasty gash over Klitschko's left eye that eventually led to the fight being stopped after the sixth round.

This fight was arranged on fairly short notice, and maybe that accounted for its unpredictability, but I'd definitely want to see the expected rematch.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 09:42 PM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
May 21, 2003
OTHER SPORTS: Sorenstam's Gamble

I just don't see the point in the PGA trying to ban women in response to Annika Sorenstam entering a PGA event, or in Vijay Singh refusing to play against her. This isn't Billie Jean King playing a washed-up has-been and declaring "victory" in "the Battle of the Sexes," and it isn't about a woman demanding a right to special treatment. As long as she hits off the same tees as the men, she has every right to play. Phil Mickelson said it best: "I look at the PGA Tour as being the tour for the best players in the world," not just the best men. Men will always dominate the PGA anyway; where's the harm in letting the best woman see how far she can go?

Posted by Baseball Crank at 08:30 AM | Other Sports | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
April 16, 2003
POLITICS/OTHER SPORTS: The Masters

I guess the whole Masters protest story turned out to be a big dud:

What appeared to happen here was more evidence that dissent on the left is a dying lifestyle. It is firmly the era of Nobody Wants to Hear It. While tens of thousands more antiwar activists were not turning out to protest the Iraq war (or to call for an end to all war-occupation-aggression-racism-injustice) on the same day in Washington, hundreds were not disembarking from buses to join the attack against Augusta National's old-boys club.

Protest organizers grumbled that too much media showed up, and they were miffed that 100 police cars were parked nearby -- enough extra fuzz to film a Burt Reynolds car chase extravaganza. Eleanor Smeal, of the Feminist Majority Foundation, took to the microphone and let out an emotional war whoop straight out of some other era, circa 1974; Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) fumbled through her speech in a nasal Manhattan accent, and people laughed, as if a Yankee caricature had been special-ordered to entertain the crowd.

Some sorority sisters from Georgia Tech, who drove over to see "the crazies, the weirdos," hopped out of their car, hugged each other and made perfect smiles for a group picture atop a knoll with the anti-Augusta circus playing out behind them. Around the same time, a man with dark, short hair and a self-satisfied grin started waving a bright orange sign while Burk spoke. The sign said "Make Me Dinner" on one side and "Iron My Shirt" on the other. A desperate media pounced on him -- not to stop him but to get any kind of sound bite from him.

He gave his first name as Haywood and a last name that would have made it obscene, an old trick you think nobody would fall for anymore, and yet, many
reporters carefully wrote H-a-y-w-o-o-d in their notes and then asked him to
spell his last name.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 06:40 AM | Other Sports • | Politics 2002-03 | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
November 26, 2002
OTHER SPORTS: QUOTE OF THE WEEK

"I'm tired of being stupid." - Mike Tyson

Posted by Baseball Crank at 10:37 PM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
November 21, 2002
OTHER SPORTS: Crickety

I guess I don't really understand cricket, but you would think that one man scoring 177 runs in a single day would be a mite tiring.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 10:30 PM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
November 13, 2002
OTHER SPORTS: Manute on Ice

Hockey. Yes, hockey. It's Manute Bol on ice! No punchline is necessary.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 11:32 AM | Other Sports | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
September 19, 2002
BASEBALL/OTHER SPORTS: Sportsjournalists.com

Sportsjournalists.com, the gossipy website for anonymous chitchat by sportswriters about their trade that had its big moment in the sun during the whole Piazza-Travis-Matthews controversy, has gone on to the Big Server In The Sky. There's probably a good inside story here, but I'm not the guy to get it. I'll say this: in any business, anonymous backbiting on a public website will be unpopular with management. Are such sites a good thing? Is it hazardous to your career, or legally dangerous, to post there? I'll leave that to the reader.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 09:22 PM | Baseball 2002-03 • | Other Sports | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
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