A Sad Memorial for Philadelphia Sports

It’s been a rough week. I chose not to write during the NLDS, and now, I really regret my decision. I thought I would jinx the Phillies on their path to victory, and although I’m a terribly superstitious person, I probably did the exact opposite. Instead, I blame an infamous squirrel. A damn squirrel??

Games 1 through 4 were exciting, nail-biting, thrilling displays of baseball. We lost Game 5, however, in a dull, boring, anxious, disappointing, uncomfortable defeat. Our bats were silent. Our players looked like they were attending a funeral.

It might have been the most anti-climatic ending in Phillies post-season history. Game 5 was excruciating to sit through. Our pitching staff lived up to every expectation. Our bullpen was solid. Our hitting, again, was dismal. Ryan Howard effigies are being burned as we speak.

The way we ended Game 5 was fitting of a greek tragedy; a long power struggle ending with our star player grounding out and injuring himself in the process. The photograph of Ryan Howard laying on the ground grasping his ankle as St. Louis celebrates will forever be burned into my brain. It was depressing to say the least.

Say what you want about Ryan Howard’s 2-19 NLDS, but as I said before, I shall sayeth again…. he led our team in almost every offensive category, by a lot, and you don’t get 102 wins without those numbers. He’s a great player, offensively and defensively.

Little side story about Game 5 : I was anxiously watching the game at my friend’s house, and during the 7th inning, he gets a knock on his door. It’s a young fellow who was man enough to face the music and admit that he had backed into my car with his Ford F-150. I had just finished exchanging insurance information when I returned to watching the game, Ryan Howard grounds out and goes down, game over. Fun day!

So who do I turn to when baseball has let me down? Football. Good ol’ Amurrrican football.

Oh wait, the Eagles are garbage right now. Maybe putting the O-line coordinator in charge of the defense wasn’t such a great idea after all?

We have one of the most talented cornerbacks looking like a fool in coverage. Asante and Nnamdi tackle like friggin’ girls. Clay Matthews might as well be the offensive coordinator for the opposing team, because the whole offense runs through him!

The Panthers are 1-4 and the Eagles are 1-4, and I gotta tell you, I feel a whooooole lot better about the Panthers right now. The only thing I see the Eagles have going for them is their division.

The Cowboys are 2-2, the Giants are 3-2, and at the top, the Redskins are 3-1. Tim Hightower, a man who recently lost his running back job (and a man I predicted to have a break-out season, lol) just predicted the Redskins would make the playoffs. If it were today, that would be true, but do I think ‘Sexy Rexy’ and the ‘Skins are going to be at the top in Week 16? No. The division is still up for grabs in my eyes.

I just want to touch on the Tebow matter for a moment. Sometimes, I really don’t understand sports. Cam Newton was bashed constantly for his mechanics and ability prior to the NFL Draft. Sure, it’s miraculous he has put up the numbers he has, but this is a man who was completely unproven and was immediately given a starting job in his rookie season.

Tim Tebow, however, has had more than 3 years to hear the same criticism and he’s already played some games. Look at his 2010 stats :

9 games, some starting, most not. 50% completion rate. 654 yards, 5 TDs, 3 Interceptions. He also had 227 rushing yards and 6 rushing TDs. Nothing to really sneeze at. Not great, but I’ve seen praised quarterbacks put up much worse.

I just don’t understand how you can criticize a man who’s already had experience. They talk about him as if he hadn’t played yet. He’s already put up decent numbers, had a healthy amount of game time, and the fans scream for him. The team sucks, you used your first draft pick on him. Just play the kid. John Fox should have started him Game 1. He knew his team sucked.

If baseball is over, and Philly football is garbage, at least I have the PHILADELPHIA SEVENTEEE SI- what?

What’s this?? David Stern cancelled the first 2 weeks of the season because of the NBA-Labor lock-out??

I’m obviously not the most informed gentlemen on the subject, but from what I’ve read, the biggest dispute the players and owners are having is the percentage of revenue that is distributed. Basically, the players want around 53-55% of the total revenue distributed to them, the NBA and owners want that number to be around 50%. Now, that’s millions and millions of dollars, but I’m distraught that 10 meetings and countless lawyers can’t come to an agreement about that.

Truth be told, the players probably deserve much more than that, but when players are making an absurd amount of guaranteed money as some franchise’s are in the red, you’ve got a problem. It’s a bad business structure from the get-go.

All I’m saying is Roger Goodell should have taken a page out of David Stern’s book. Stern is clearly fighting for the owners, isn’t budging in any of the negotiations, and there’s almost no bad PR for him! The fans and employees of the NBA are losing games and no one is giving David Stern any crap for prolonging these negotiations? Do you remember the NFL Draft? Remember how many boos Goodell got? How is David Stern above all of this?

Times are tough, guys. We have a long, sad football season ahead of us, we have a 6-month long wound left by the Phillies that won’t even begin to heal until Spring, and who knows if the 76ers will even take the court this season. Stay strong, Philadelphia.

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