Monday, June 27, 2011

Ain’t No Sunshine When He’s Gone…

Ain’t no sunshine when he’s gone, it’s not warm when he’s away, ain’t no sunshine when he’s gone, and he’s always gone too long anytime he goes away….Bill Withers sang this classic about a woman that left him or somebody…I’m citing it because Tiger Woods has left us, again! Tiger, who has never missed a US Open had missed this year’s tournament. Tiger, is also about to miss his own tournament, The AT&T National due to knee and Achilles injuries and has folks questioning whether or not he’ll even be ready for The British Open which is around the corner, is still struggling emotionally and physically. But Tiger hasn’t been Tiger since November 2009 when his personal issues hit the media. So everyone wants to talk about this young kid, Rory Mcllroy that won The US Open. Golf is not an easy sport. It’s more of the chess compared to the checkers of sports but give me a break folks; let this kid make his own mark- his own name. I really don’t care for the comparisons- there’s only one Michael Jordan, one Muhammad Ali (I never saw Sugar Ray Robinson), one Joe Montana, one Babe Ruth (old footage), one Roger Federer, and only ONE Tiger Woods!!

I did try and watch the 2011 US Open but for me, a Tiger fan, it was bland and seemed more like a US Closed. People look to see what Tiger is doing on the links, they look forward to those amazing swings, good or bad, and it’s just no fun to watch without him. So if I felt that way, how many others out there felt the same? It’s a trickling effect because without Tiger the ratings drop and the advertisers can’t reach their max consumer potential. Tiger can make or break a tournament, even now. So Tiger is very much needed in the game for fan viewership and revenue potential.

Say what you want, but Tiger Woods is a brand and even with all his baggage, bad games and injuries, he is still the highest grossing athlete in sports worldwide, grossing an estimated $75 million between May 2010 and May 2011 and I know why…everyone wants to be Tiger Woods! Grown men imitate him, kids try to be him and women have been introduced to the game because of him. It’s because of Tiger that I started watching and “attempting” to play golf. I have always been a fan of the Nike brand but I probably wouldn’t own a TW hat; a Frank, his driver cover (I call mine Frankie) and a Nike golf rain suit that I will probably never wear in my life because I just can’t see myself golfing in the rain if it weren’t for Tiger Woods, and not to mention my Tiger Wii game that I do play regularly. Tiger SELLS! Tiger has marketability and Tiger is taking it to the bank. Even if Tiger is retired, his name is so well branded, that he will continue to go to the bank with no problems.

But what about my “Tigger”?? The man I enjoy watching make those complicated swings look too easy until I attempt them, lol? Where has he gone? Is he ever coming back in full force??? Or have his sexcapades drained his game? Personally I want Tiger to get his old game back. Go get a bunch of broads and get his swing back, literally! Am I wrong? No! I can care less about his personal life, that’s HIS business. I just want to see him play again at his full potential and I will continue to keep my hopes up that that Tiger Woods eventually returns to quiet all this mad chatter at least so I can catch him once up close and in person to witness the game of the man that has made me a fan of the game of Golf.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A King After His Own Ego

There’s nothing that will turn someone like me and some people off quick than a person with an inflated ego. No, not confidence but straight up ego. There’s a big difference between one exuding confidence and one ego tripping and it’s just not sexy! As I watched LeBron and heard his comments post the Dallas Championship, I thought he was overtly arrogant and rude in his responses. As I listened to him over and over state that people can now go back to their seemingly menial lives and that he’s going to basically do what he’s been doing, living his larger than large life, a huge part of me was disappointed and disgruntled at the arrogance oozing out of him through my TV. It wasn’t what he said, it was HOW he said it that bothered me. It took me to another player, whose arrogance and demeanor literally makes me nauseous now, Kobe Bryant. Don’t get me wrong, both are incredibly talented on the court and great athletes but is the inflated ego necessary? Some have argued that Michael Jordan had an ego that was out of this world but the kicker is I never felt his ego. Maybe I was too young to pay that much attention but MJ never made me stop and question his demeanor.

I know that some women don’t care for Kobe because of the Colorado incident. I’m not that chick. I can’t for the life of me understand why a woman would go to a man’s hotel room that she has no rapport or relationship with--what exactly are you looking for to happen? I was on Mike Tyson’s side and I was on Kobe’s side there as well. I honestly get offended when women scream rape due to bs. Yes, no means no, but maybe the woman should have said no, “NO, I don’t know you to be coming to your room”, how about that? And before you ladies get your Vickie’s in a bunch let me say that I take the rape issue quite seriously, so don’t go screaming it if it didn’t really happen in the form of a rape and diminish and make a mockery of the seriousness of an issue happening to girls and women everywhere. But the thing that just irks me about Kobe is the arrogance that he exudes through the TV in such a high, sickening dose. When I say I get nauseous, I literally get nauseous at the sight of him. It’s such a turn-off. Though I’ve never liked Kobe due to his arrogance and the fact I don’t particularly care for West Coast teams anyway only added to my dislike, I started feeling the nausea thing after a 2008 playoff game where he said to a reporter and I quote, “I can turn it on anytime I want” with such cockiness that made me want to puke. Kobe actually couldn’t “turn it on” for the remainder of the series and Boston won the 2008 Finals. Ego gets you nowhere.

I reiterate, hands down I think Kobe and LeBron are great athletes and I won’t take that from them but can we tone down the ego guys? Though I haven’t been a Kobe fan, I have been a fan of LeBron’s since the first time I saw him play. However, when a friend tagged me on a YouTube video of LeBron disrespecting a Chicago Bulls ball boy (, I was pissed but eventually I let it go due to his immaturity. When he made a spectacle of “The Decision”, again, I let it go to immaturity and this time, I gave him a pass and said he’s building the hype, but when his latest comments translated so cold and superior on TV, they just broke this camelette’s back.

Maybe that’s what these guys want? Maybe they’ve been so coddled and told they were the best thing since slice bread for so long that they really think they ARE kings and ARE superior.
As long as I live, I will never forget the t-shirt that Dwayne Wade wore after LeBron made The Decision to go to Miami; I will NEVER, EVER forget that shirt! It was a bold statement that read “D-WADE County”- referring to Miami’s Dade County. Clearly Dwayne was sending a message to everyone coming into his territory, like a dog marking his area. That image will forever be embedded in my and many heads probably forever. What was he subliminally saying, "Yo, this is my world and you're just a squirrel trying to get a ring? He was ego tripping on himself and then to go and say that he, LeBron and Bosh are the 3 best players to have EVER played the game… come on son, seriously? How do you fix your top lip to meet with your bottom lip to even utter crap like that?? Do you live on Earth or are you and your buddies that far detached? These guys are so beyond themselves that they can’t even begin to comprehend the stuff they say or do on and off the court…filter anyone?

So at what point do we stop making excuses for such deficiencies in character? Clearly, Miami as a whole, LeBron, nor the coach were ready for a win at this time. Dallas was the better team that outplayed and outsmarted them. Is it fair to take your frustrations out on the fans that support you or have supported you because you may be emotional or upset at the outcome or maybe upset with the attacks of those who were hurt by you? Again, it’s not what you do but how you go about doing it that sets the tone. This is what you signed up for you know, it all comes with the territory LJ and DW. Maybe like one of my friends pointed out, LeBron not going to college to develop his game is catching up to him and he was a dear in headlights, frustrated, angry that he came so close and couldn’t close the deal. Maybe these guys feel so scrutinized for every little thing by the media and by the fans that stuff just flies out of their mouth without proper thought? Whatever it may be, I feel that the ego is running the show.

To my Dallas peeps, I’m an East Coast fan but I do congratulate you for a well played series and a well deserved win. As for my Miami peeps, it just wasn’t in the cards this year…maybe next year…

Side note: When I think of ego or someone “ego-tripping”, I think you must be greater than great, larger than life, a higher being, to be damn near untouchable, flat out supernatural; which brings me to think of a poem by one of my favorite authors: “Ego-Tripping” by Nikki Giovanni…if you can’t move mountains or part a sea, you shouldn’t be a man or king after your own ego…enjoy peeps!

Ego Tripping (there may be a reason why)

I was born in the congo
I walked to the fertile crescent and built
the sphinx
I designed a pyramid so tough that a star
that only glows every one hundred years falls
into the center giving divine perfect light
I am bad

I sat on the throne
drinking nectar with allah
I got hot and sent an ice age to europe
to cool my thirst
My oldest daughter is nefertiti
the tears from my birth pains
created the nile
I am a beautiful woman

I gazed on the forest and burned
out the sahara desert
with a packet of goat's meat
and a change of clothes
I crossed it in two hours
I am a gazelle so swift
so swift you can't catch me

For a birthday present when he was three
I gave my son hannibal an elephant
He gave me rome for mother's day
My strength flows ever on

My son noah built new/ark and
I stood proudly at the helm
as we sailed on a soft summer day
I turned myself into myself and was
men intone my loving name
All praises All praises
I am the one who would save

I sowed diamonds in my back yard
My bowels deliver uranium
the filings from my fingernails are
semi-precious jewels
On a trip north
I caught a cold and blew
My nose giving oil to the arab world
I am so hip even my errors are correct
I sailed west to reach east and had to round off
the earth as I went
The hair from my head thinned and gold was laid
across three continents

I am so perfect so divine so ethereal so surreal
I cannot be comprehended except by my permission

I mean...I...can fly
like a bird in the sky...

And only now can you Ego-Trip…

Saturday, June 11, 2011

M.I.A. in Dallas

I had already heard the talk about the larger than life kid athlete who was still in high school but I didn’t become intrigued until I spotted a few folks with these green and gold, seemingly pewter jerseys while I was at a Pistons game one night; on the front- IRISH 23, on the back- JAMES 23. What in the world? Who wears high-school jerseys? This kid was making noise, LOUD noise, in my neighboring state of Ohio and the noise carried over…nationwide. As my curiosity grew, I researched his stats, I asked my sport fiend friends and everyone about him, everyone knew this kid was something special. I wanted to see for myself and my boyfriend at the time worked with athletes, so he got us two tickets to witness history- The 2003 McDonald’s All-American Game held at Gund arena in Cleveland, OH.

The first time I saw LeBron James I was in awe. This wasn’t a kid, he was huge, very muscular and had the body and face of a grown man, he seemed like an old soul, yet reality was he was a kid and only 18 years old. He walked towards where I was sitting and dapped the man sitting directly in front of me, they shared a few words and he went back to his shoot around. I was in the second row; the man in front of me was Jay Z! I looked at my boyfriend and said, “How does he know Jay Z already?” Clearly, I was floored and the game hadn’t even started yet.

As I watched the game progress, I was impressed by his strength, dominance, athleticism, demeanor and control. There was a certain power about him, you literally felt it while watching, it was nothing short of amazing. I cheered and although there was so much talent on that court that day and there were many young guys playing their hearts out at that game like Michigan State’s Shannon Brown (Lakers), and Wake Forest’s Chris Paul (Hornets), I was focused on LeBron James, though I did make some shouts about Andrew Lavender who I thought was a hustler of a point guard but he never saw the lights of the NBA. LeBron ended the game with 27 points, 7 assists and 7 rebounds and was chosen as the MVP of the game. Out of the 24 young men that played in that 2003 McDonald’s All-American game, 13 are currently in the NBA.

LeBron James elected to skip college and take his talents to the NBA, and I witnessed why. As he entered the draft the speculations were wild, will he be able to handle the pressure of the NBA? Will he fizzle out and be an ok player? Or will he be a force to be reckoned with and became the talent that a lot of folks felt he could be? He entered the 2003 NBA Draft, which personally for me, was one of the most exciting drafts ever. He was selected as the number 1 draft pick by the Cleveland Cavaliers over Carmelo Anthony, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, yes, they were all in that draft together, how about that! LeBron didn’t just go and become a dominant force in the NBA, he became an enforcer of the game. He gave Cleveland 7 years of his hard work and dedication averaging 28 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists, but after a heart wrenching 7th season and failing to achieve his goal of a championship in the 2010 playoffs, he decided to recolate his talents to South Beach. I watched LeBron check out of the 2010 Playoffs last year and heard a rumor stating that he had some personal issues that he was dealing with at that time. Regardless of what it was, I understood his stance, I may not agree in the process he chose or the way he handled it but I understood he wanted a championship and that he felt he gave Cleveland all he could and wanted a change.

LeBron went to Miami with one intention, to seek and facilitate a championship not a change in scenery. Miami struggled in the beginning of the 2010-2011 season and had people questioning whether this coming together was a good idea but eventually Miami meshed together and started playing serious ball. Miami finished the regular season 2nd (58-24) in the East behind number 1 Chicago (62-20) and above number 3 Boston (56-26). They dominated and ran over everyone in the 2011 Playoffs including Chicago and my favorite, Boston. They got their wish and made it to the 2011 NBA Finals and……….well, since he dazzled us with 24 points and 5 assists in game 1 against the Dallas Mavericks, LeBron has been Missing In Action. King James feeds off of the energy of “The Game” and The Finals has been a great series. The games have been engaging and energetic and yet, King James is M.I.A. and of all places in Dallas!
So where is LeBron? What’s really going on with him? Will he return in Miami tomorrow or just make an appearance? Has he completely checked out again? I had a conspiracy theory that the Godfather of the NBA, David Stern, wants a 7 games series. So I thought that maybe he asked LeBron to fall back, there are politics in sports folks, big time and there’s big money involved but the Mavs are now 1 game away from the championship and I just don’t think that King James will get this far just to watch it slip or throw it all away but how do we explain his scoring slump?? He scored 20 points in game 2, 17 points in game 3, 8 WHOLE POINTS in game 4 and 17 again in game 5, giving the Mavs a 3-2 lead in The Finals. What’s going on here?

LeBron James IS NOT an oh-be-why Kobe Bryant type of player. LeBron James is a consistent player and doesn’t have off or bad days. LeBron James is a force…until maybe he gets to the playoffs…hmmm??? Is he going through another “personal” issue or is the pressure so high that the King is choking? How can this be? Maybe he feels the weight is now on his shoulders. Maybe the promises he made about winning multiple championships in Miami (back to back) is getting to him. Maybe he feels this was too easy, there has to be a catch. Maybe he’s just simply afraid…afraid of not repeating what has seemed to come to quick and easy, with great young teams lurking in the shadows such as Chicago, New York and Oklahoma City. Maybe there are just too many thoughts going through his head and this has him discombobulated. Whatever it is and wherever you are LeBron, it’s now or……….

To check out some of the action from LeBron James 2003 McDonald's All-American game go to:


Thursday, June 9, 2011

Tackling the Tressel and Terrelle issue…What’s really going DOWN in Buckeye Nation and the NCAA??

Jim Tressel resigned from Ohio State after ten plus years as head coach, and a week and a half later, Terrelle Pryor tells the NCAA to kiss it or “foregoes” his senior year. Is this really shocking to anyone here? I wouldn’t want to answer to the NCAA either. Yes, Tressel knew, I’m sure there are a lot of coaches out there that know of such acts but don’t disclose the information because it could disturb or alter the dynamic of their athletic program due to the sanctions the NCAA has in place. Is that hypocritical? Maybe, but why not ask the NCAA why this continues to happen? Who’s really the culprit? Is it that these kids are signing their lives away to their school and while making the school millions of dollars, they can’t get not one percent of their merchandise earnings ever and end up getting lured in by boosters, businessmen and whoever has the cash flow to facilitate their current needs?

Many people feel that it’s a fair trade- you, a kid, sign your entire college earnings FOR LIFE in exchange for an education, room and board maybe even a few dollars in your pockets depending on your scholarship amounts. Really?? So, if I lived on a plantation, and I did what my master told me and worked hard, I’d have a meal and a roof over my head but can’t get any money off the cotton that I picked that’s now headed to town to be threaded into fabric?? I believe there’s a term for that…right? Same analogy, different circumstances- yes, I said it! The NCAA is nothing more than a modern day plantation owner. Pay these kids a percentage of their earnings. They are making you money. Wake up folks! The National Collegiate Athletic Association is a for-profit business. The University/ College is not paying these kids way through school, the athletic program, that’s worth and making millions of dollars is!!

So where does this leave OSU? Well, I’m from the D aka Detroit…home of The Big House (if you don’t know, Google it), and for me, there’s nothing like watching a Big Ten game but frankly I don’t mind watching OSU sweat and scramble, I just hate for the kids who chose to attend and be a part of the legacy that is Ohio State to get lost in this madness. Ohio State went 11-1 last year losing only to Wisconsin, including winning against my two home teams Michigan and Michigan State. Tressel is the coach that got them there and to the Sugarbowl, which they won over Arkansas 31-26. Pryor ran for 2772 yards, followed by Herron 1155 yards, Sanzenbacher 948 and Posey 848. So it’s safe to say that Coach Tressel had a fire of a squad and that he did his job. Am I mad at him, nope! Am I crossing my eyes at the NCAA, yes! I hope that the Buckeyes get through this madness and smooth things out. Tressel and Pryor are gone but is that going to stop any of the infractions committed by the athletes??? You answer that.

I will say this, on Saturday, November 26, 2011, OSU plays in the Big House…maybe I will fly home and attend the game. My swami is saying it doesn’t look good for The Buckeyes, yeah, I know it’s early but I’m going to call it anyway…smile OSU fans, all in fun in the love of sports :)

PS Terrelle Pryor’s so called former friend is a PUNK!!!