We really need the NFL and college football to start their real seasons. It has been another pretty drab week in the sports world, but there is always a few things that keep us interested. This week, while I usually like to keep this light hearted and a bit tongue and cheek, we need to start with tragedy.
This Tony Stewart story is nuts. Saturday night in an Empire Super Sprints series dirt track race, Stewart, NASCAR’s legendary hot head, hit and killed fellow 20-year old driver Kevin Ward, Jr. If you missed the story, it is absolutely tragic and currently under investigation as an accidental homicide despite many eye witnesses crying foul. Stewart and Ward had bumped each other a few times which eventually led to Stewart putting Ward into the wall. While the drivers were under caution, Ward got out of his car and started walking down the track at Stewart’s car. Other drivers were able to avoid him, but Stewart hit him head on in one of the scariest scenes in recent racing memory. Ward was rushed to the hospital but pronounced dead on arrival. Several fans at the scene said they heard an engine rev, which under caution makes no sense. Others saw skid marks, somewhat implying that Stewart swerved from revving the engine, however, NASCAR officials saw it as accidental. Stewart will not miss a beat and is racing at Watkins Glen Sunday. As much as Stewart is notorious for his temper and confrontational antics, I can only hope that he would never take it so far to intentionally run over someone not even old enough to legally drink yet. I’m sure more will unfold in the coming days.
The King got some big Love in Cleveland this week. The Cleveland Cavaliers traded 2013 first overall pick Anthony Bennett, 2014 first overall pick Andrew Wiggins and the Cavs’ 2015 first round pick to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Love. A lot of people think both teams walked away better after the trade, after all, all the money in the world wasn’t going to get Love back to Minnesota. Hey Kev, here’s $30 mill a year to stay in the city of completely irrelevant sports teams. When Adam Dunn strikes out more in a single season than the amount of wins all four major sports teams tally, you have a tough sell on your hands. All I see in this trade is LeBron James building another Miami Heat squad. Sure, they will bully the East, but after Cleveland and Chicago, my boy Pooch and four of his friends can compete in the Eastern Conference. They have James, Love, Kyrie Irving and Anderson Varejao but after that, the bench dwindles. Sure, you have Tristan Thompson and Syracuse alum Dion Waiters to round things out, but it still doesn’t seem like they will have the depth to hang with teams San Antonio Spurs, OKC Thunder or even the new look Dallas Mavericks. That being said, James, Irving and Love will be fun to watch and in the NBA that’s all that matters.
Preseason football started in the NFL and it only has us all itching of real action. My Texans went out and got ransacked by the Arizona Cardinals, but first overall pick Jadeveon Clowney buried Stepfan Taylor in the backfield which made watching the first quarter all worth it. If you missed it live, you can watch it over and over and over again here. Elsewhere, Johnny Manziel made his long awaited NFL debut and, much to the chagrin of yours truly, looked pretty darn good. Mr. Football’s first series was a three and out and he looked a bit shaky on a pivotal third and short play. He learned quickly from his mistake and finished strong, finishing with 63 yards passing and 27 yards on the ground. Immediately following the game, the Browns brass changed their tune and felt Johnny Vegas would surpass Brian Hoyer and be starting Week One. As if that is an accomplishment. Speaking of rookies, the Jacksonville Jaguars stood firm that 2014 draft pick Blake Bortles won’t play this season because they want to avoid another Blaine Gabbert situation. The only problem was that Gabbert was a talentless hack from the get go and couldn’t hit the ocean from a boat with a football never mind a wide receiver. It is really unfair to be a Jacksonville Jaguars fan.
The unwritten rules of the MLB have stirred up some controversy yet again. The Arizona Diamondbacks and Pittsburgh Pirates got into a bean ball war, but the end result was detrimental to all of baseball. It started when Pirates reliever Ernesto Frieri hit all world first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, breaking his hand and ending his season. The Diamondbacks responded by hitting reigning NL MVP Andrew McCutchen in the back breaking his ribs. There are two major problems with this. The D-backs are D-bags, managed by a major D-Bag in Kirk Gibson and run by Tony LaRussa, who despite all his greatness, was an outspoken firm believer in retaliation throughout his illustrious career. If these stupid unwritten rules were finally written down, punishment could be served. But because baseball is run by a complete moron in Bud Selig, a man who needs to ask the federal government to police the sport he runs because he is utterly incapable, it simply won’t happen under his watch. Could you imagine if it was the NFL? Goodell would have the Diamondbacks first round draft pick taken away, Kirk Gibson banned for life and Ernesto Frieri would be suspended for 62 weeks. The second problem and the real reason that the D-Bags need to be punished is because it was in fact Ernesto Frieri who hit Goldschmidt. If you have ever seen Frieri pitch, you know that this wasn’t intentional. This guy is so bad, he fist pumps like Joba Chamberlain anytime he actually throws a strike.
Elsewhere, Tony Bosch turned himself in to the feds this week. Bosch was the infamous leader of Biogenesis and the scandal that followed. Due to the fact that Selig couldn’t handle his athletes or players association, the federal government got involved and it will be a miracle if we the fans (you know the people that pay for every last player and higher-ups’ salaries) figure out who the cheaters were. And you know what? Who cares? Have we not all come to the realization that baseball needs a little juice again? Come on, people!
There it is, folks, another wacky week in the world of sports. Tune in next Sunday to see what the next magical six days have in store. And don’t forget to join the ever growing Wayniac Nation on Twitter and Facebook!!!