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Archive for the ‘NBA’ Category

Out of the chute let me say I’m not a big professional sports fan. Sure, I follow (at arm’s length) the home town teams of the Vikings, the T-Wolves, the Twins and the Wild (although I just don’t get hockey). Pro sports are, in my view, getting closer and closer to resembling the World Wrestling Entertainment franchise and less like a place where great athletes can show off their prowess on a team or a field. Therefore, I’m much more a watcher and fan of the Olympics – where amateurs (and yes, some professionals), can legitimately compete.

A recent trade completed by the Minnesota Timberwolves however, prompted me to think back on the tradees career – at least that that has been visible to me through the media.  Power forward Kevin Garnett has moved to the Boston Celtics after 12 years as a T-Wolve. He came right out of high school – one of the only talents in the NBA to do so and become a superstar. Fans here watched as he matured and became an MVP player – one of the best – many people say.

Like many NBA greats, he is deserving of an NBA championship, but it has eluded him because of many reasons, none smaller than inept ownership and management of a team that has shown windows of greatness – only to be defeated by poor decision making by the administration.

The Celtics, on the other hand, have a history of great teams. NBA championship teams. So as Garnett moves to Boston and joins several other mature players hungry for a winning season, the Timberwolves enter a rebuilding phase.  Boston gets the better deal.

Not only is KG an athlete and a winner, he is a quiet contributor to the community he lives in.  While in Minnesota, Garnett gave millions to various causes – many involving kids who live in poverty. These kids only need a boost, a glimmer of hope, to stay on a good path – to stay in school.  Garnett provides millions of glimmers of hope to kids each year.  So the City of Boston will benefit through Garnett’s transition to Massachusetts. And the Celtics, they benefit as well with a new leader, an MVP-type player and someone who wants to win it all before his days on the court are done.

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If you’re a major league sports fan, it’s four stikes and you’re out.

Black Tuesday fell upon the sports world today.

From the Tour de France, where (surprise!) yet another stage winner pulled out of the Doper Alexrace following doping allegations. This time Alex Vinokourov, who was very likely competing in the last TdF he’d ever participate in, decided to up his odds by pumping himself with someone else’s red blood cells. It’s called homologous blood transfusion. It’s against the rules. So, another rider falls by the wayside of the Alps because, clearly, the only way to win the Tour is to cheat. Heck all the pro riders do it, so it’s not really cheating, it’s just breaking the official rules in order to level the playing field.

The TdF fiasco may completely take down the sport of pro bike racing, which when you stack spectators side by side, it’s really small potatoes when compared to what’s happening in the NBA. Today, NBA commish, David Stern, blamed what he described as a “rogue, isolated criminal” for a betting scandal that is giving the league headlines during its off season and questioning the credibility of every referee. Stern says he’s betrayed by former referee Tim Donaghy, who is now the target of an FBI investigation for allegedly betting on games, including some he officiated. The ref will likely take a plea to make this all go away.  Kobe who?

And in the NFL, the news only gets more interesting. Michael Vick, quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons, obviously has too much money and time on his hands since he’s been charged on numerous counts involving a dog fighting ring that he was leading.  Falcon’s team owner Arthur Blank, who initially planned to suspend Vick for four games (until the feds suggested the NFL take no action until the investigation is finished), said he planned to ask Vick to put his career on hold while the case is pending.

Lastly, Barry Bonds, working for the San Francisco Giants, continues his try to beat Hank Aaron’s home run record which, when accomplished, will be tarnished due to the obvious steroids abused by Bonds to increase upper body strength. Apparently, the increase in upper body strength resulted in a decrease in overall brain power once held by Bonds.

So sports fans, how about cracking open a book, renting a DVD, doing some summer yard work or hey, here’s an idea – go participate in a sport instead of watching these embarrassing members of society who take drugs and have clear mental issues, pretend they’re professionals.

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