A talking head here in Sacramento says this constantly, and as I was reminded recently, you play for the name ON THE FRONT of the jersey, not on the back. So with that in mind, I wanted to talk about a few things on that subject:
Golden State’s chase for the NBA record. One night recently I was driving home from bowling and I heard the debate over Golden State’s chances for catching Chicago Bulls record 72 wins in a regular season. Some numerologists were running around saying how great a shot GSW had, as they only had four losses. So guess what happened? Yep, that’s right, coming off the all-star break, Portland blew their asses out. So now they sit at 49-5 with 28 games left.
Personally, I’d love to see Golden State take the record and get to 73 wins. I think far too many people take the MJ worship way too far, and I’d love to see a TEAM take that record. Then maybe the NBA will start to figure out that sometimes TEAM is the better way to go.
Miracle on Ice. We overuse the term “greatest” or “miracle” or whatever when it comes to sporting events, but in my opinion NOTHING will overshadow the USA/USSR Hockey game played 36 years ago yesterday. I was only 16, but it seemed to me that the country was really struggling on all fronts: economic, happiness, and so many other ways. It seemed like a dark time as explained like this:
“It might have been the overall low point for American self-esteem.” That was a comment made by (I think) Jim Lampley about life in America back in 1979.
Has it really been 36 years ago yesterday that the scrappy little American team went up against the big bad Soviets and beat them 4-3? I can’t think of many times that sports and patriotism really mixed as much as what I saw on February 22, 1980, and I can’t think of very many times I’ve been so emotionally involved in a sporting match/game.
Al Michaels call at the end made us all believe, at least for a minute: “DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES? YEEEEEESSSS!!!” Michaels said just after the game “no words necessary just pictures” and he was right.
The cold war melted, if only for a brief second that day, but it sure seemed to me that on that cold February day in Lake Placid, our nation began its own comeback. People seemed to feel better, happier.
I’ll leave “the greatest” rankings to historians and scholars and philosophers, but you can’t tell me that wasn’t one of the greatest moments of sports EVER.
NHL Winter Classic – Minnesota. Yeah, yeah, I get it, I’m a pimp for all things Minnesota. Deal with it. It seems to me that the two capitals of hockey in America are Boston and Minnesota. Correct me if I’m wrong.
I’m hardly in a position to speak to this with any breadth of knowledge, but I found it interesting all the complaining about fans in Minnesota not coming out to an outdoor Winter Classic match against Chicago. News flash people, 50,000 Minnesota crazies showed up at a Football Stadium to watch an outdoor game in February!!! Yes, it was less than capacity, but who the hell are you to mock Minnesota fan? There was a report that the reason they didn’t sell to capacity was because of cost. That would seem to make sense if the reports are accurate.
Oh, and on what appeared to be a very nice Saturday in the Twin Cities, nearly 38,000 showed up for an alumni game between players from the past – North Stars vs. Black Hawks. Sounds to me like the folks in Minny supported the outdoor game pretty damned well, don’t you think? And by the way, how cool was it for the alumni to be rocking North Star gear?
Memo to the NHL, a good way to make more money, have more outdoor games in Minny. It would seem to me, and I’ve lobbied for it for awhile, that Minnesota should be hosting a home and home New Years Day hockey series, perhaps against Winnipeg? Make it USA vs. Canada? I’ll say what I’ve said for years, make it a best of five or seven series, USA vs. Canada on New Year’s Day.
But getting back to hockey itself, can one of my hockey experts explain to me what the hell is going on with the Minnesota Wild? Though it sounds like at least for now they are starting to play better.
Drama. I’ve bored lots of you with my frustration with this drama, reality-style element in sports and in all of life. I find it sickening and when it comes to sports, I find it interesting that it appears to be a necessary part of it. What it tells me is that sports on its own can’t survive unless it has drama, and by drama I mean the unnecessary bullshit reality style shit we see on a weekly if not daily basis.
But to those who wish to continue cramming that shit down your throats, if you look at this story, you should be embarrassed. Thank you to Foxsports.com for sharing it right here. Simply put, a seven year old runs ultra-marathons, was diagnosed with a tumor in his brain, continues to battle it, and still runs.
If you’re focusing on silly drama to create attention to yourselves, eff off. Props to Lota Ward and I hope we continue to hear about this brave little man for a long time to come.