Welcome back to Today’s Sports Update; I’m Sebastian Maldonado bringing you all the latest news in sports. We have a lot to cover including our Winter Olympics, NFL free agency, and the post-season future of the NBA. We also have spring fever, sorry spring training, and a possible boxing rematch that could mean fair or foul.
The Winter Olympics was a success for the countries who participated and NBC, whose ratings increased during this period. History was made on all accounts. The US won the 4-man bobsled event, the first time they have won since 1948. Apollo Anton Ohno won 8 medals and shattered the record previously held by speed skater Bonnie Blair. Bode Miller overcame his disappointing 2006 and returned to win 5 medals: 1 gold, 3 silver, 1 bronze. Skier Lindsay Vonn and snowboarder Shaun White also won gold in some of their events. Perhaps the best story is Canada; they hosted the events in Vancouver and boasted they would dominate in every event. They did not, and the US led every nation in the medal count. Yet, Canada does have something to boast about. They rule hockey! Both the men’s and women’s hockey team beat both US teams for the gold. While the US fell short, both were great games that should be remembered for a long time. Let’s hear it for all athletes around the world that participated in this year’s Winter Olympics.
Spring Training (or spring fever) is under way. All players are back with their teams; minor leaguers join the major leaguers hoping to make the 25-man roster for opening day. Many interesting storylines will take place this year. For starters, the Yankees have to fill up their outfield and their fifth starter (Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Chan Ho Park, etc.). The Mets have bigger issues, as this latest development has shocked everyone within the Mets organization. Mets shortstop Jose Reyes might have a thyroid condition. Doctors will have to wait 48 hours for the tests results to come back.
Are you ready to feel the Thunder? The NBA playoffs might have to, as they are well within their reach of clinching a playoff spot. Yet, many other teams are feeling the pressure. One is the Los Angeles Lakers. They haven’t been looking like the championship team of old. Pau Gasol is struggling in the paint. Kobe Bryant is carrying the team as best he could, but he’s still playing hurt. Plus, the Cavs are looking dominant despite the absence of Shaquille O’Neal. The Magic are starting to gel in the East, while the Celtics are also struggling. It’s going to be an intriguing march to the post-season.
The UFC’s status is good, bad, and worthy of note. What’s good is the heavyweight division. Their roster is stacked with contenders, including Cain Velasquez. He beat Antonio Noguerra at UFC 110 via TKO. Heavyweights Frank Mir and Shane Carwin will duke it out for a shot against heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar at UFC 111. Gabriel Gonzaga will take on Junior Dos Santos on free TV on the Versus Network March 21st (check local listings). What could be bad is the signing of former heavyweight boxing champion James Toney. Toney always wanted to fight in the UFC, if you’ve been keeping track on Dana White’s UFC blog (here’s the link for their exchange after UFC 108: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bht6OVptIig). Toney is 41 years old and overweight, but then again, Herschel Walker performed well in his fight. And he’s 48. What’s intriguing is the development for UFC 111: St. Pierre vs. Hardy. It will be broadcast in select theaters on March 27th. No one is sure how much tickets will be, but it will be interesting what makes more money: the Prudential Center venue which is hosting the event, the theaters, or the pay-per-view companies. Either way, the UFC will be raking in the dough.
Time for the issues to be heard in: The Athlete’s Court!
- Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is facing another charge of sexual assault from a different student in a different state. His night of partying in a central Georgia college town ended with a new allegation against him. An unnamed 20-year-old college student told police he sexually assaulted her in a nightclub. The two-time Super Bowl winner already faces a lawsuit from a woman who claims he raped her in 2008 at a Lake Tahoe hotel and casino, an allegation he strongly denies. Roethlisberger has not been charged in either case.
Time for the magic man to take over!
Tyson vs. Holyfield III! It’s exactly what you’ve been waiting for, right? Rumors are circulating that Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield will fight again. If people thought boxing was dead before this, it would die on the spot if this actually happened. Both fighters are way past their prime and are still talking about fighting. Some people still don’t know when to retire. It’s sad when someone talks about these three fighting when we should be talking about Mayweather/Mosley or Pacquiao/Clottey. We really should be talking about Mayweather/Pacquiao. That fight would have the casual fan talking about boxing again in a positive light. Tyson/Holyfield III would have people talking like it’s a reality show. It would e depressing if anyone bought this fight on pay-per-view. It’s also one thing to see a man past their prime fight in a movie. The reason is you know it’s a MOVIE! Seeing these two men fight once more would just be wrong.
Congratulations To (NFL Free Agency Special):
The Bears and Lions are making an effort to catch up to the Vikings and Packers. The Bears signed three free agents to get their physicality back. They signed DE Julius Peppers for six years, RB Chester Taylor for four, and TE Brandon Manumaleuna for five. The Lions signed WR Nate Burleson for five years and DE Kyle Vanden Bosch for four. Both teams believe these players will be key factors for the upcoming 2010 season.
- Miami signed LB Karlos Dansby for five years and $43 million. Dansby was one of the top free agents this year, and the Dolphins must be excited for their new linebacker.
- The Ravens got a receiver for Joe Flacco to throw to. They traded a third and fourth round pick in this year’s draft for WR Anquan Boldin. Boldin then signed a four year, $28 million deal. The Ravens are very excited for their new wide-out.
- The New York football Giants have struck in free agency, which is surprising since they usually draft a safety. They signed safety Antrel Rolle for five years worth $37 million, making him the highest paid safety today. He will be fighting for a spot with fellow safeties Kenny Phillips and Aaron Ross.
Brewers 1B Prince Fielder had an elaborate celebration for his walk-off homer against the Giants (here’s the link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ha2tTC-kGEU&feature=related). On Friday, he was hit by Giants pitcher Barry Zito with the first pitch. It was retaliation for that celebration; this isn’t going to end well. Fielder shook off the pitch and took his base. Does this matter? Is it really that big of a deal to retaliate in spring training? It’s a game that means nothing, so this retaliation means…nothing. What else is there to say? It’s silly and juvenile to retaliate in spring training. Send a message when the game means something. Maybe then your revenge will be taken a little more seriously.
Well, that’s all the time I have for today. If you disagree with anything I say, leave a comment below (either on WordPress or Facebook) or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact me via LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com/pub/seb-maldoando/18/159/a2b). Thanks for reading and take care you KNUCKLEHEADS!
*NOTE: for the YouTube link of the Toney & Dana White interview, wait for the end. If you want to see the entire video, I recommend it. The blogs expose the lives of fighters and White himself. It also shows what happens on fight nights. I recommend it for MMA fans and also for those who want to learn more about the MMA business. Check it out.
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