Dominating the sports landscape this weekend will be the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, where they finally have been able to receive some prominent, winter weather to utilize for good use! In this first week, the most prominent issue as been about the lack of snow, forcing the postponement of certain events for skiing and snowboarding.
As we have seen, most of the events being held in Vancouver feature individuals primarily. Rarely do you find there being many team contests.< However, that’s not the case when it comes to the Mens Hockey tournament, which is easily considered one of the more marquee sports within these Games. This involves a select number of countries vying for the Gold medal, including the USA and Canada.During this competition, the NHL shuts down for a period of time while the players from various teams go play for their home country. Both the Canadian and American rosters feature 23 members each from the NHL. You will also find NHL-ers on the rosters of Sweden (19), Finland (16), and the Czech Republic (16). While all hockey fans watching these games are pulling for their own country, the atmosphere for these players is far more intriguing. There are various situations in which guys who play together on the same NHL squad are now going against each other to pay for their homeland. And that means you’ve got a situation in which guys who are friends now have to look at their teammates as an opponent, which simply can’t be done in the immediate sense. Players certainly know each other well. They easily know their strengths and weaknesses. They are used to pulling for one another. Now, they have to beat their comrades. The other issue to consider is that NHL players played games right up to the start of the Olympic contests. That means there was virtually no time at all for team practices or strategy sessions. Guys were simply coming together and working on the fly, as if it were a pick-up basketball game. It makes for odd settings, especially for the team head coaches. Canada certainly can be considered a favorite to win this tournament. The country embraces the game passionately. Playing in their home country, the support is rabid. It will be interesting to see if the Canadians can pull out a Gold. In the meantime, there are plenty of other Games going on. Hopefully, the conditions will be favorable to get all the action in for viewers to see. NBA
At 43-11 coming out of the All-Star break, you would’ve thought the team chemistry with the Cleveland Cavaliers would have to be top-shelf! They have the best record in the league, including a 13-game winning streak. rently the Cavs and their management thought otherwise, making a trade to bring in F Antawn Jamison from the Wizards, in exchange for C Zydrunas Ilgauskas and F Al Thornton. There is no question Jamison is a pretty good player, having done good things in his time with the Wizards. He can score, and do some rebounding. But you simply have to wonder how he will now fit in to this team, as it had really hit its own stride.
Meanwhile, other teams are doing some deals to alter their own roster, all for different reasons. Obviously, Washington thought they had no chance and wanted to scrap their two best players…and their salaries. Hence, the trading of Jamison to Cleveland, and Caron Butler and Brendan Heywood to Dallas lets everyone know the season his over for the Wizards.
Other teams are not doing a thing with their own rosters, figuring they are set and ready to go. The Lakers are quite happy with their own guys, even going on a four-game win streak without Kobe Bryant! The Boston Celtics did not do any deals, hoping their veterans can stay healthy enough to make a strong playoff run into the Spring.
So we’ll see how the rest of the season plays out, as many eyes will stay focused on LeBron James and the Cavs.
DAYTONA 500 REDUX
The Daytona 500 on Sunday was a complete joke of a race. It was so lame…so awful…so ridiculous…it was a waste to anyone who either went to attend or watched on TV.
The first half of the race was actually alright, with lots of lead changes with a number of drivers. Crashes were minimal, as were yellow flags.
Then, it was found that there was a potholes on the track, requiring officials to stop the race while filling the hole. It took over TWO HOURS to do that! What a complete and utter joke! You would think those who run the racetrack would know in advance if there were potential problems like that. The track itself hadn’t been paved since 1978!
Of course, that was just the beginning of problems. More damage required a stoppage of the race. After a re-start, the drivers finally got out and got close to finishing the race. Then, with about ten laps to go, the crashes began, one after another, forcing numerous cautions. The race actually ran extra laps, simply to get in a clean finish. The whole scene became a disaster. What once used to be the highlight of the season has turned into a catastrophe.
And so, after all the calamity that made the race nothing but a bad excuse that started at 1 p.m., finished up at 7:30 p.m. with the unheralded Jamie McMurray, who wasn’t close to the leaders the entire race, as the winner.