Bryan and I were trying to come up with something for one of us to write tonight. Later this week I will be putting up a new mock draft and will be taking another look at the NFL playoff situation while Bryan will be putting up another one of his draft position posts, but tonight neither of us could come up with anything to write. With nothing else coming to mind I decided to lay out where my loyalties lie in each sport. I will briefly explain why each team is my favorite for that specific league and list a runner-up as well. This idea came to me because over the weekend I had stopped in Columbia, MO on my way from Knoxville back to my parents house for Christmas. On Saturday morning we watched a soccer game from the EPL (English Premiere League). After the game Bryan suggested that I pick an EPL team to be a fan of. I ended up settling on one and which team it is will be revealed later in this post. Let’s get started. Continue reading
In his new book, “Open”, Andre Agassi reveals quite a few personal things. At different points in the book he states that he hated tennis, that his famous long hair was actually fake, and that he used the drug crystal meth throughout much of 1997. He even failed a drug test, but lied to ATP officials saying he ingested the drug on accident and wasn’t suspended. Once this news broke, there was a little backlash from some current players who faced Agassi during his career. One player, former #1 player Marat Safin, went as far as to say that Agassi should forfeit his tournament titles and return his winnings to the ATP.
I’m not a huge tennis fan; I enjoy watching the Majors and I generally just pull for the Americans. Hearing about Agassi’s struggles hasn’t changed my opinion of him at all.
Bryan and I were both out of town for Fourth of July weekend and weren’t on the internet at all. There were some pretty big things that happened in the world of sports that we feel should be mentioned but didn’t have the opportunity to write full posts on. I’ll just give a quick one or two sentences about each one.
– Steve McNair was shot to death in his downtown Nashville apartment. It currently looks as though it was a murder suicide by the girl whose body was found next to his.
– Roger Federer beat Andy Roddick for his 15th Grand Slam at Wimbledon, passing Pete Sampras previous record of 14 career Grand Slam victories.
– Tiger Woods won the AT&T National this weekend. This gives Tiger 68 career PGA Tour wins, five short of Jack Nicklaus and 14 short of Sam Snead’s record 82 career wins.
– Manny Ramirez returned from suspension and hit a home run in his second game back.
– USA beat Grenada in soccer to win their first round match of the 2009 Gold Cup and will face Honduras in their second game.
– Serena Williams beat sister Venus Williams to win Wimbledon on the women’s side and then the two teamed up to win doubles.
– Three stages into the Tour de France, Lance Armstrong is currently in third. He is seven seconds behind Tony Martin and 40 seconds behind Fabian Cancellara.
– Some big name NBA free agents have agreed to terms with different teams from the ones they played with this past year. The most notable are: Ben Gordon to the Pistons, Hedo Turkaglu to the Raptors, Trevor Ariza to the Rockets, Charlie Villanueva to the Pistons, Rasheed Wallace to the Celtics, Marcin Gortat to the Mavericks, and Ron Artest to the Lakers.
– And most importantly Bryan and I got the oportunity to play two games of Schleuderball over the weekend and we won both games.
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The last two days have been huge in women’s sports. Yesterday, Annika Sorenstam announced her retirement from golf effective at the end of the year. Sorenstam is arguably the greatest female golfer in history winning 72 LPGA events including 10 majors in her 14 year career. She cited her wish to settle down and start a family as one reason for the decision. I can understand that, as she really doesn’t have anything else to prove on LPGA tour and while she has played in a men’s tournament, she never really expressed any interest in playing against the men on a regular basis.
The problem for the LPGA is that they are losing their biggest star and really their only marketing tool. The LPGA tour will turn to players like Lorena Ochoa, who is currently ranked #1 in the world rankings; 21-year-old Paula Creamer, #4; and 19-year-old Morgan Pressel, #15, to become the torch bearers for their organization. It will be interesting to follow the situation next season once “Life After Annika” begins.
One day after Sorenstam’s departure another female star announced that she would also being leaving her sport. Justine Henin, the #1 ranked female tennis player, announced that she would be retiring effective immediately. The 25-year-old cited “burn out” as her reason for stepping aside.
Henin won 7 Grand Slam titles and spent more than 100 weeks at #1, but I feel like she will be easily replaced. While she was a big star in the world of tennis, she was far behind players like the Williams Sisters and Maria Sharapova. Unlike Sorenstam, Henin did not single-handedly carry her sport into mainstream coverage. There will be another Justine Henin, just like there was another Steffi Graf, Monica Seles, Jennifer Capriati, etc.
Hopefully for the LPGA, they can turn to one of their young, rising stars to take over and dominate the sport, but I’m not sure they have one just yet. The LPGA may suffer for the next few years while their stars battle to decide who is the brightest. This is a big time for them, but if they play their cards right, they can make their sport much better than it was before.