Last night’s call in the Atlanta vs. St. Louis game was horrendous. While it likely wasn’t the reason the Braves lost the game, it’s no less of a disaster for MLB as they unveiled their new Wild Card format to the masses.
In true interweb form, Memes and photos mocking the blown call immediately started popping up.
Here are a few of the better ones that I’ve seen:
A photo courtesy of The Blaze is circulating around today which appears to show a small child performing a “Keg Stand” with the assistance of some adults.
It cannot be determined from the photo whether the child is actually drinking beer, but this is a horrible thing regardless.
Honestly, who would consider this “funny” or “amusing”? This is just embarrassing.
Tragic news has been reported this morning by WEWS Cleveland involving a western Michigan high school basketball player. Wes Leonard, a 16 year old student of Fennville High School collapsed on the court shortly after hitting a game winning shot to complete a perfect season for his team.
A hospital representative confirmed that Leonard died later last night and a cause of death has not yet been determined. Leonard reportedly fell to the ground after teammates and fans rushed the court and he was pronounced dead after being rushed to the hospital.
Thoughts and prayers go out to the young man and his family and friends as they are dealing with such a tragic situation.
The state of Iowa has produced many a champion wrestler at both the high school and collegiate level. The state tournament in Des Moines this week offered an interesting twist to one of the matches. CBS Sports reports that Joel Northrup, a home-schooled sophomore, with a rather impressive record defaulted on his match with Cassy Herkelman (a female) because he doesn’t believe males and females should compete in the same sports.
In a statement released through his school he said this:
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Cassy and Megan (another female who made it to the tournament) and their accomplishments. However, wrestling is a combat sport and it can get violent at times. As a matter of conscience and my faith I do not believe that it is appropriate for a boy to engage a girl in this manner. It is unfortunate that I have been placed in a situation not seen in most other high school sports in Iowa.”
Cassy Herkelman’s father issued this statement to the AP:
“It’s nice to get the first win and have her be on the way to the medal round. I sincerely respect the decision of the Northrup family especially since it was made on the biggest stage in wrestling. I have heard nothing but good things about the Northrup family and hope Joel does very well the remainder of the tourney.”
According to CBS Sports, he Northrup is allowed to participate in the consolation rounds because he “defaulted” as opposed to “forfeited” the match.
So far, I had no questions with the circumstances. But here is when I raised an eyebrow.
Apparently the young man’s father is a minister in the “Believers in Grace Fellowship” which is an independent Pentecostal church and he believes that “young men and women shouldn’t touch in a ‘familiar way’.
I don’t totally understand what is meant by a “familiar way” but I can certainly tell you that it is highly unlikely that this was the young man’s decision. Based on these quotes, it is not a stretch to believe that his father is the one making this decision for him and I just hope the young man doesn’t end up regretting it down the road. Who’s to say that he’ll ever have a chance to compete for a State title again in his career.
I personally don’t know what I would do in that situation, but it’s definitely a decision that I would want to be driving as opposed to having the decision made for me. Who knows. Perhaps it was entirely the young man’s decision, but it just doesn’t smell right in my opinion.
Ted Williams, the man with the Golden Voice, the internet sensation who captured America’s hearts as we witnessed his story of redemption and second chances has been detained by LAPD according to the Los Angeles Times. Williams has been on a whirlwind media tour since his video went viral just about a week ago today and his latest trip was to the city of angels.
Williams was in town for several TV appearances, including Entertainment Tonight and earlier yesterday afternoon, he visited the Los Angeles Lakers. But according to law enforcement sources, Williams and a family member believed to be his daughter were detained after police were called to the Renaissance Hotel for a disturbance.
The sources described the event as an altercation with his daughter and Williams was eventually released. The investigation is classified as “ongoing” and it appears to be unclear as to whether any arrests would be forthcoming.
There is no mention about drugs or alcohol being involved and the cause of the altercation is unknown at this time.
For Williams it had been just about the perfect week, but it ended on a sad note. We can only hope that this was an innocent event and that he’s staying on the right track with his life and newfound fame.
I’m sure you’re familiar with various wrist band products that claim to offer miraculous benefits to users of the products such as improved energy, balance, strength, flexibility, etc. There are several different types and they all offer varying degrees of BS in their sales pitch (the worst of which I’ve seen via infomercial).
But PowerBalance, who is endorsed by athletes such as Shaquille O’Neal, Lamar Odom, Drew Brees, Derrick Rose, and many others has recently admitted that they are completely full of SH*T.
In a statement released to the Australian press, the company stated the following:
“We admit that there is no credible scientific evidence that supports our claims and therefore we engaged in misleading conduct in breach of s52 of the Trade Practices Act of 1974. If you feel you have been misled by our promotions, we wish to unreservedly apologize and offer a full refund.”
Here are some of the claims on their website that they now admit is complete BS.
Floyd Mayweather has had his share of run ins lately and he was actually just released from jail following allegations of assault. Money May is having a rough time as he recently tried to drive into his gated community and was stopped by the security guard. The guard required ID to allow him to enter and Floyd apparently didn’t have any on him. I can understand his frustrations as if I were him and some guard was trying to keep me from getting to my house I would probably flip out myself.
Mayweather went so far as to accuse the guard’s actions as being racially motivated. Apparently he lives in the same development as the Maloufs who own the Sacramento Kings and various casinos in Las Vegas. Mayweather insinuated that the guard wouldn’t stop the Maloufs if it were them without ID.
I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of hearing anything about Floyd Mayweather that doesn’t involve setting a date for a blockbuster fight with Manny Pacquiao.
Here is the video…..
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We’re all familiar with the SportsCenter commercials that started years ago that featured various athletes in mostly funny skits. At the time, it just appeared to be a great way to get exposure for the athletes and to provide a little humor with the sports programming. But little did we know that it would foretell the beginning of the end of ESPN’s credibility.
ESPN is certainly the worldwide leader in sports entertainment. They are massive and have an inordinate amount of leverage and power in the sporting world. They can actually make or break an athlete with their programming. And that’s the problem. They literally have the ability to sway public perception about an athlete with their “down your throat” “24-7″ programming and Capitol Hill-like spin.
It has gotten progressively worse since ESPN was acquired by the entertainment giant, Disney. For anyone even a little familiar with Disney’s programming and marketing power, just reference Miley Cyrus, the Jonas Brothers, and Justin Bieber. I sincerely apologize for having to mention these people. Please, please forgive me. But this type of marketing that Disney has employed to force these “talents” upon the world and create their stardom, not based on talent, but based on the enormous resources allocated to them and the constant and almost brainwashing programming.
For ESPN, the downward spiral began well before the acquisition by Disney as the foundation was laid when they started to get into bed with athletes. Once they stopped reporting sporting news and started creating news, spin and more of an entertainment focus than a journalistic focus, it was all downhill. Once they entered into more of a business partnership relationship with athletes as opposed to a professional and journalistic relationship with athletes, the Axis of Evil was born.
Anyone with even a little objectivity can cite dozens, if not hundreds, of examples of incredible bias, spin, and inappropriately allocated programming towards ESPN favorites like Tiger Woods, Brett Favre, LeBron James, etc. There is no denying that each are incredible athletes. No argument, whatsoever. But there is also no denying the tremendous spin and bias that ESPN employs in regards to these players in order to maintain their “investment”. ESPN builds up these athletes’ popularity and stature so as to build a long-term audience. They then tailor their programming to be heavily dedicated to these people so it’s in their best interest to spin and alter perception to uphold these athletes’ stature, and keep public perception positive.
Just a handful of weeks ago, ESPN began an effort to control the damage to LeBron’s image after the fiasco that was “The Decision”. Not only did LeBron James’ image take an incredible hit due to his actions over the summer, but ESPN was called into question for their role in the debacle. ESPN not only dedicated its programming (as usual) and began heavy spin control to re-establish their “investment” as a positive figure in the NBA and in the sporting world in general, but they sent reporters and camera crews to Cleveland in an attempt to alter public perception.
They literally sent reporters to Cleveland prior to the beginning of the NBA season and asked a series of questions that were clearly in an attempt to re-allocate blame for “The Decision” and other LeBron mistakes on the City of Cleveland and Cavaliers fans (http://bit.ly/dks0cT). The questions also were a direct attempt to blame Cavaliers fans for the way LeBron James behaved. They also tried their best to portray Cavs fans as a bitter, ignorant, and uneducated fan base. It was consistent with LeBron’s recent marketing strategy to paint himself as a victim as they were also portraying him as a victim and they were making excuses for his behavior. As always, LeBron is never at fault, and he is never responsible for anything.
All of this is fine, and it’s actually a savvy and proven business strategy. The issue arises, however, when ESPN portrays itself as a news entity and as a credible journalistic source. It is clear that they’ve moved well past the arena of sporting news and journalistic credibility and have become almost solely an entertainment entity.
Looking back on it now, after we’ve seen the unprofessional, unethical, and inappropriate way ESPN has dealt with the likes of Tiger Woods, Ben Roethlisberger, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Lance Armstrong, and Brett Favre, this old commercial is strangely prophetic. ESPN has gone out of its way to try to protect these and other athletes. Examples include Brett Favre’s “Sext Scandal” with Jenn Sterger where information was literally available for months that it had occurred and they waited until the last possible minute in an attempt to not have to address it. Their editors pulled a story about LeBron in Vegas over the summer after they saw that it had some information that painted LeBron in a negative light (even though it was completely accurate and was completely consistent with the purpose of the story).
This type of behavior has been going on for years, seems to be getting worse, and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. The funny part about this commercial as well, is ESPN has a HUGE list of former commercials on their website, but I was unable to find this one on there. It appears that they pulled it, perhaps because it’s not as far fetched (or humorous) as it maybe once was.
In this commercial, Dwyane Wade is given “Final Cut” authority over his highlights. Funny at the time as it was clearly done in a joking and unrealistic manner, it is now sadly and strangely prophetic. Given LeBron James’ pull over how ESPN reports on him, this type of thing isn’t all that impossible anymore. And that’s sad. There is no question that LeBron James’ people got the Vegas story pulled much in the same way he had Nike confiscate the Jordan Crawford footage. You can’t tell me that Tiger, Favre, etc. don’t have a forum by which to provide “feedback” that steers the programming and discussion at least to some extent.
Favre, for instance, has multiple ESPN reporters on speed-dial that he uses to leak whatever information suits him at the time. He knows they will run with whatever information he wants at any time and dedicate an incredible amount of programming. Whether it be retirement, un-retirement, injury, etc. The last time he “retired” and sent a text to a teammate saying he was done, ESPN literally dedicated a full day of programming to discuss the move and in tribute to Favre’s career. Does this seem appropriate or ethical?
This particular commercial had to have come out at least 4 or 5 years ago in a time where this did seem far fetched and in good fun. Unfortunately now, given the dark road ESPN has traveled down, it’s not so far fetched any longer. Take a look. You’ve probably seen it before, but when I saw it again with a different perspective, it kind of made my skin crawl.
Star player, Joel Monaghan of the Canberra Raiders, which is a part of Australia’s National Rugby League, has recently quit the team and forfeited his contract due to a sex scandal. The National Rugby League is the highest level of professional Rugby in the world and is the equivalent of the NFL. Now, a star athlete getting into trouble over a sex scandal isn’t all that uncommon or shocking… Just look at Tiger Woods or Brett Favre or Kobe Bryant or Ben Roethlisberger. But for an athlete to quit the team and walk away from his contract is a bit uncommon.
So what in the world did this guy do? What sex scandal could be THAT bad to cause this kind of fallout?
Well, Mr. Monaghan got all Frat Boy Wasted with his buddies and at a party decided it would be a good idea to have sex with a dog. That’s right… with a DOG! Apparently he and his teammates were enjoying a few beverages at an end of the season party and he thought it would be a good idea to violate his teammate’s Labrador. There are pictures circulating the internet which I haven’t seen and I won’t post that one of his teammates took with a camera phone. Maybe they thought there would be a market for doggy porn?
Obviously this is a sick and twisted act and it’s completely disgusting and reprehensible for someone to abuse a helpless animal. Not only that, but what kind of sick freak wants to bang a dog!? I guess these rugby guys are a different breed…
Former NFL Player and Wife Beater, Warren Sapp
Ok from the halls of disgruntled former athlete who is depressed with his weight, ultimate legacy, recent arrest, and upset by being left off the NFL’s Top 100 list comes former NFL player and current fat piece of sh*t, Warren Sapp. As much as I would like to discredit him completely, I do have to admit that he was a very good NFL player. But his contributions to society end there (unless you count the stimulus to his local economy in the food service industry).
The ex-NFL player who is now an “analyst” on the NFL Network apparently has some pent up anger and frustrations with his own shortcomings as a man. We haven’t heard much from Warren since a failed attempt at Dancing With the Stars other than his contributions on the NFL network and, of course, his February 2010 arrest for domestic battery in Miami. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that Warren is so angry towards a City and State that he knows NOTHING about… after all, he is a WIFE BEATER, the most cowardly of men!
When reading my recent blog on Cleveland’s response to LeBron James’ “What Should I Do”? commercial, I received the following direct message from the one and only, WIFE BEATING, Warren Sapp: