In one of my earliest posts here at Ladies…, I confessed my deep and abiding love for track and field. (Also, holy crap — that was a year ago?) Well, I have once again proven my track nerd bonafides by not only watching last weekend’s coverage of the World Championships in Berlin (such as it was, since I don’t get Versus and had to make do with the two hours a day NBC could tear away from the “Dew Tour”) but getting into a giddy text message exchange with my brother immediately after watching Usain Bolt’s smashing of his own 100m world record. (My brother, by the way, believes Usain can break 9.4 before he retires.)
There is an understanding in my home state of Maryland, you either root for the Redskins, or you root for everyone else but the Skins. I’m a glutton for punishment, so I became a sad sap of a human, full equipped with Skins Starter jacket and a love of Joe Gibbs. Follow me this week as we travel through the capital city of this great land, and the teams that almost seem like afterthoughts to professional sports.
Undoubtedly you’ve noticed that us current Ladies are not the biggest NBA fans in the world, given the number of Stanley Cup related posts vs. NBA finals posts over the last week. Of course in some ways the Stanley Cup was considerably more exciting than “The” Finals (and why can’t they come up with a catchy name? “The Finals” is so …bland). And the Lakers won again. Doesn’t it seem like the Lakers always win? I knew, in the back of my head, that they hadn’t won in some time, but it took me by surprise to realize there were seven years between Kobe’s third and fourth title.
I got the idea for this post when I was talking to my friend about the last time the Yankees won the World Series. It’s almost going to be nine years, but nine years isn’t that long. If I ever complained about a nine-year World Series drought to a Cubs fan, I would more than likely get a smack in the face…and it would be completely warranted.
However, when I think back to where I was the 2000, it seems like ages ago. The last time the Yankees won it all I was a freshman in High School. It feels like I graduated from H.S. ages ago; forget about actually being a freshman. The bottom line is we all follow our team with one goal: to see them win it all at the end. Don’t get me wrong, you can still enjoy the season, but you are never fully satisfied unless your team is the last one standing. Unless you root for the Phillies, Red Sox or Cardinals, the last time your team won it all can seem like a lifetime ago.
So let’s take a little trip down memory lane and see what life was like the last time your team were World Champions. Sorry to all Washington, Milwaukee, Houston, San Diego, Colorado, Tampa Bay, Texas, and Seattle fans. You need to have won at least one to qualify.
I suppose if you’re a Red Wings, Magic, Lakers, or Serena Williams fan, then it really wasn’t a disappointment of a weekend at all. But over all, this weekend seemed to be filled with disappointment from all over the world of sports – from a 25 inning game 1 showdown to missing the mark in the NBA finals.
Things got a little scary for Cleveland this week. Their series against the Magic took an ugly turn when they fell 3 games to 1. The Nuggets gave the Lakers a run for their money but with a 3-2 lead, it looks like LA will find themselves in the finals once again. It is déjà-vu all over again for the Stanley Cup Finals as the Penguins and Red Wings face off for the second time in as many years. And amidst all the playoff fun this week, there was some baseball thrown in there as well.
Several years ago when my ballet career was over I decided to leave New York City and focus on one thing, College Football! I applied to every college with a major football program on the east side of the Mississippi and, being the superstitious lady that I am, decided to go to whomever I heard from first. It was a glorious day ordained from heaven when I became a Buckeye, but more importantly I became a part of a larger family, the NCAA College Football family. Every Saturday we commune in bars, parking lots, homes, you name it, and from sun up till sundown, we cheer and scream, drink and eat, and live and die with every play, because, we are … college football fans!
I made a trip last weekend to my alma mater, The Ohio State University, and was immediately struck by how badly I longed for that most glorious time of year, football season! The first time I ever set foot in the Horseshoe on gameday was one I will never forget; a sea of scarlet and grey, palpable excitement, beer flowing like wine, making new friends every stumble along the way, The Best Damn Band In The Land playing “Hang on Sloopy,” and thousands of people there for one purpose: to cheer our team to victory. There is nothing in the world like it, and there is nothing like college football season! So here they are ladies and gents, my top ten reasons I am so desperately wishing it was football season, in no particular order…
Last weekend wasn’t just for NCAA basketball in my family; my parents, brother and sister-in-law all went to St. Louis for the Division I Wrestling championships. I’m sure Chitown Chick would want me to mention that Iowa won, though they did it without having any individual champions (this ESPN article headline sums up the anticlimactic nature of the Hawkeye win).
My brother was kind enough to give me a summary of the more interesting stories of the weekend — he drew the line at helping me pick out the cute wrestlers, but I can do that on my own.
The arms above belong to NC State wrestler Darrion Caldwell. Darrion pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the tournament, defeating Iowa’s Brent Metcalf (who had lost only twice in his college career). Unfortunately, Darrion got a little carried away with his victory celebration and then this happened …
We are now a little over 48 hours away from the culmination of the entire 2008-09 NFL season. Just like the World Series, this championship features a team making its unlikely first appearance in the big game and … a team from Pennsylvania. Plus they are playing it in Tampa. It’s certainly not the first time a city has hosted both a World Series and a Super Bowl, but it may be the first time a city outside of California has done it. So there’s your (unverified) Super Bowl fact of the day.
As this is a sports blog, written by sports fans, most of us Ladies have plans to watch the game. Some of us are neutral, some of us have a particular team, some of us are just obsessed with Kurt Warner, but we’ll all be parked in front of a television somewhere at game time. Further details after the jump, but first:
POP (AND ALCOHOL) QUIZ
Can you match the beverages below with the Lady who will be drinking it during the game? (Options: Lady Andrea, SA, Minda, Games Mistress, and Cinnamon Girl)
In my short tenure here at Ladies …, I have picked an Angels-Cubs World Series, and managed to finish last in our Bowl Pick ‘Em Pool (technically second to last, but that’s only because Cinn forgot to actually pick the games). So it’s pretty clear I have no business whatsoever picking winners of this Sunday’s NFC and AFC championship games. Like any good sports blogger, this is not going to stop me.
Since picking based on my sports “knowledge” doesn’t seem to be working, I decided to use a random and arbitrary method, completely unrelated to how much big-game experience the quarterbacks have and whether a star player is not 100% healthy. However, I wasn’t exactly sure how to come up with said randomness. And then, while conducting a Google Image hunt for a picture of the Arizona Cardinals’ mascot, I found my muse :
Last Sunday, I was in the Tulsa airport preparing to fly back East, when I noticed the airport bookstore (which is locally owned), already had a sign out next to their OU merchandise reading “Congratulations Sooners! 2009 National Championship.” And that’s pretty much when I knew OU was doomed. (OK, I’m exaggerating. Kind of.)
Anyway, congratulations Florida, and also to OU for a thrilling season (with two notable exceptions, obviously). Now I will proceed to mope for the next 24 hours or so. I originally thought perhaps I’d get some solace from posting some hot athlete pictures, but the problem with that plan is that hot athletes remind me of sports which reminds me of the game. So I hope you all don’t mind if I invite my Imaginary TV Boyfriend, Lee Pace, to mope (hotly) along with me.
I am a terrible procrastinator, especially when the holidays come around. I have unopened boxes of Christmas cards that have been sitting around my apartment for two years because I put off doing them until it’s late enough in December that I “save” them for “next year.”
So of course, since we’re only going into the second official holiday shopping weekend, I am not planning on doing any shopping (or card addressing). I am planning on watching college football. Lots and lots of college football.
After two really stinking long off days, MLB playoff action (there’s only one, remember…) resumes tonight.
More about them, their teams, the rest of the series, and the American League too…after the jump.
My friend Susan is a big Texas Rangers fan. We were in college during that late 90s period when the Rangers won the AL West every year (usually to be swept in the first round by the Yankees). In 1998, the Rangers clinched their division, thanks to an Anaheim loss, while being crushed by the Mariners. We managed to commandeer a dorm TV for the occasion. After the game, the Rangers had the obligatory champagne spraying celebration anyway, to the great confusion of the international student who had been asking us questions about the game most of the evening.
“But they lost, right?” he kept asking. Susan and I attempted to explain about the division title and playoffs, but he couldn’t quite wrap his head around it. “But they lost by a LOT, right?” Eventually, Susan and I left him to figure it out and went down the hall for some celebratory Baskin Robbins. (God, I miss that dorm.)
I don’t know if you all knew this, but the Celtics won the NBA Championship! As the resident NBA posting Lady, I feel remiss that I didn’t post about this last week! But oh well. Congrats Celtics! Now I must also apologize to the Celtics franchise and their fans. I had them pegged to lose to the Lakers. Not that I wanted them to lose (as I hate the Lakers), but they had just played so inconsistently! Heck, Atlanta took them to seven games! So I’m sorry KG, Paul, Ray. I’m sorry Boston. I should have kept the faith. You deserved to win. Now please, if you don’t mind, could you keep the douchey fandom to a minimum? Nothing is worse than an asshat, cocky, Boston fan. (Except maybe an asshat, cocky Yankees fan…)
No, the Ladies… have not turned into a Rafael Nadal fangirl site. Nonetheless, I will be the first to celebrate his awesomeness and overall hotness at each and every occasion. So here’s to you Rafa. Congrats on doing what only Bjorn Borg had managed to do before you: win 4 consecutive French Open titles. Here’s to continuing that streak (you are only 22 after all) and repeatedly dominating that most wretched of all players, Roger Federer, on the beautiful red clay. We here at Ladies… salute your triumph.
The NBA’s most storied franchises, the Celtics and the Lakers, have met nine times in its Finals. Between the two, they hold twenty-nine of the league’s sixty championships, and one or both have been there 39 of its sixty years. As I learned at Basketbawful, home of great basketball analysis, eighteen of the league’s official Top 50 players of all time are from these two teams. Where do this year’s teams place in the pantheon of great Celtics and Lakers teams of the fifties, sixties and eighties? By extension, how does this year’s Finals match up with those of the past, and how do today’s player’s?
I think the most important question to ask, though, is this: who cares? We’re all about the here and now, people, and tonight there are talented hotties playing basketball.
For the fourth time in 11 seasons the Detroit Red Wings are in possession of Lord Stanley’s Cup. Congratulations to the Wings and all their fans out there. Enjoy your championship. Especially since some of us who root for other Michigan teams are looking at the possibility of a long while without the chance at seeing a championship (*grumble*stupid Detroit Tigers*grumble*). And Pittsburgh Penguins fans don’t hang your heads. The way I see it y’all have a young team that looks like it has quite a few years to win the Cup for themselves. This is only the beginning.
One thing y’all know about me is that I love championship pictures. And I’m pretty sure you all know that’s what’s coming up. Congratulations once again to the Red Wings and their fans.
Dan McGrath is a 2L at the University of Notre Dame Law School. What is he doing this week? Studying for finals, preparing to leave for his summer job…and WINNING THE LONG ISLAND MARATHON. He’s from Long Island and he flew home this past weekend just long enough to finish the marathon in 2:25:38. He then hopped a 5 pm flight back to South Bend and took his Jurisprudence final at 9 am Monday morning.
Tennis is about the only sporting comfort I have to get me through the long dark offseason. Ain’t many gents take a finer picture than Novak Djokovic. And he beat Fedy darling in the Australian Open, but went on to win the damn thing, so I suppose that’s all right.
The 4 Heisman candidates were announced last night, so I thought we’d take a gander at the nominees. These four fine strapping young lads will travel to New York City on Saturday for the ceremony, though most people seem to think it is a foregone conclusion that the winner will be a certain Gator (booooo). I am grudgingly inclined to agree, now that Dennis Dixon is not a contender. (He coulda been a contender!) Anyway, I now present the Heisman Finalists for 2007. They can be our
Heis Men. Rise Men. Size Men. Lies [down next to us] Men. (I know, it’s a stretch.)
This one’s for you, Metsy.
Also, has LaRussa been teaching him tricks?
Colt has taken the Rainbow Warriors to the only perfect season in Bowl Subdivision football. Hawaii is on their way to their first-ever BCS bowl, as they meet up with Georgia in the Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day. This season Colt passed for 4,174 yards and 38 touchdowns. He also set the all-time touchdown passes record of 131. Continue reading
All the trials and tribulations and journeys through the wilds of Ohio? Down 3-1 in enemy territory, and facing elimination with just one loss standing between us and the end of our season? The rally towels snapping against our ears and the constant pounding of the drum in the Jake outfield and the rest of the horrors of the three-game stand in Cleveland? It was all worth it. Because this happened.
And then this happened.
I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a better utilization of Bud Light, because hot damn, that’s beautiful.
BOSTON RED SOX
AMERICAN LEAGUE CHAMPIONS 2007
Speaking of hot damn- HOT DAMN, that’s awfully sweet sounding.
And as for the hotties? Just kick back, put on the appropriate soundtrack (which I have helpfully provided for you), and peruse through some lovely photos of our boys celebrating amid the champagne and Bud Light and cigars and all the love Fenway could provide.
“Dirty Water” by the Standells:
“Tessie” by the Dropkick Murphys: