19 year-old Sloan Stephens beat Serena Williams yesterday in the Australian Open and is on her way to the semifinals. Now, Is she the next Serena? She doesn’t have to win the Australian Open this year to prove it. But time will tell. (Next up: #1 Victoria Azarenka tonight @12am ET)
As we celebrate and honor the birth of a man and his legacy today, I am reminded of just how Dr. Martin Luther King struggled to bring equality to all men. And as our 45th President, Barack Obama, a black man, is inaugurated today for the 2nd time, I see that that equality has been reached. The NBA has blessed us sports fans with a slew of games and good match ups today. It is my hope, that the players, which are overwhelmingly predominantly Black, continue to show pride, respect and a thankfulness for people like Dr. Martin Luther King and Pres. Barack Obama. Now on to the match ups:
Pacers – Grizzles (ESPN)
Kings – Hornets
Rockets – Bobcats
Timberwolves – Hawks
Nets – Knicks (NBATV)
Clippers – Warriors
Spurs – 76ers (TNT)
Lakers – Bulls (TNT)
Wizards – Trail Blazers
Now the games start early 12ET, so grab a seat and enjoy. I am most interested in, of course, my Bulls and the Lakers, and the Clippers-Warriors game. But like I said, all of the games are going to be good. So enjoy the day off, and do something to honor Dr. Martin Luther King in someway today!
Like me last night, I think that everyone in the sports world was wondering, Why was Joakim Noah not in the game for the majority of the 2nd half and overtime against the Memphis Grizzles? I didn’t pay full attention for the beginning of the second half, I believe I was still eating my dinner. But after our rally and when we got that three point lead with 1:32 to go, I just assumed that you were going to put Noah in. It stayed on my mind, as I watched Memphis come back and tie the score following THREE, I repeat, three offensive rebounds. Then when I saw Naz come in after Taj fouled out in overtime, I thought that something must be the matter with Joe. Because although my eyes weren’t glued to the screen, blowouts tend to make this happen, I knew he couldn’t have fouled out that soon. Anyway, after the game, I checked the box score, he only had two fouls. Then I worried, did I miss something, did he get injured. I had seen him on the bench near the close of the game, he didn’t seem like anything was wrong with him. Now, I was forced to watch the local news, plus I had a Twitter buddy waiting for an update. Anyway, the first thing that the sportscaster said, was that Joakim was in the Doghouse for throwing a bad pass. They even showed it. It was on a break. Now I’m ok with you sending the message, but if you had taken that same approach with Jimmy Butler, then he wouldn’t have thrown it away at least a second or third time. Anyway, that isn’t the point. The point is, Joe may very well be the best thing the Bulls have going right now, even on the fastbreak. (And oh yeah, did you use that bounce pass that Jimmy tried to make to Boozer on the fastbreak as a teachable moment? It should’ve been in the air.) Anyway, I’m sure you liked it when Joe feed Rip on the break for a layup early in the game. How soon we forget. We, the fans will forget, just don’t do that again!!!
Sure he’s 20 years old, and was at a casino in Oklahoma where you only have to be 18+ to enter. But if you want to win another Heisman Johnny, then I suggest that you tone it down, not just a bit, but a lot! Otherwise, you are seriously putting in danger your chance of becoming only the second player in history, to be a two-time Heisman winner. (RB Archie Griffith is the other one.) Now, you have at least 2-3 years to live this down. I’m sure that you believe and others may say, what I do in my personal life has nothing to do with what goes on on the field. But this is college, and it’s all about perception. Sure there was a rumor that Cam Newton may have gotten money in college, but there was no proof. But here you are Johnny, with proof in hand flashing it for all the world to see. The NCAA is probably gonna be watching you a little more closely. Because like me, they probably aren’t buying that you got this lucky from spending some allowance or per diem money. Just like the NFL, the NCAA has an image that it wants to project, and a student-athlete gambling isn’t it.
[2012 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel posted this picture on Instagram. But after criticism took it down, and sent out a tweet indicating where he was, and telling people to “KEEP HATING!”] But this is the internet, once it’s out there, it’s out there!
Ray Lewis announced today, that he was retiring. Sure he was one of the greatest linebacker’s that ever played the game. But when I saw the ESPN poll question that asked, who was better: Ray Lewis or Lawrence Taylor? I honestly couldn’t answer. But if I had to, I would say LT. LT was dominating. Ray was consistently good. Someone on Twitter said, that he was better than Brian Urlacher. Now I have seen a lot of Brian Urlacher, and I’m going to say this, strictly when both were in there prime, I would call it even. But what I’m going to miss most about Ray, and I think every NFL fan will, was his pre-game dance and inspiring speech. He had me fired up after hearing them. So goodbye Ray, the league won’t be the same without you.