The Lo Down: 20 Facts (Week 49)
1. Kevin Durant received the MVP award last Tuesday.
Kevin Durant probably just gave one of the best MVP acceptance speeches I have ever seen. This is why people root for this guy; as if the NBA playoffs needed another good story to root for; this is an amazing post season rich with subplots: The Clippers story of unity, The Heat's pursuit of a 3-peat, The Nets inaugural season in Brooklyn (just to mention a few.)
2. “Last Week Tonight” airs on HBO every Sunday at 11 pm.
I was really skeptical that television could absorb another news satire program, I was wrong. It’s great and essentially helped give me the inspiration for the format of this article. I highly encourage you to catch it (the best part is that it’s non-linear and you can watch at your convenience.)
3. Josh Gordon tested positive for marijuana
I believe the NFL has the most conservative climate politically and culturally of the major sports. But this is a progressive time in America and its starting to insert itself (progressive thought) in the NFL as well. As marijuana becomes decriminalized and medicinal marijuana legal it seems extreme to penalize a player a full season for testing positive for the substance; it certainly is not performance enhancing. And in the litany of NFL character issues in the NFL this is relatively harmless….paging last call for the Minnesota Vikings Boat Party, last boarding call for the Minnesota Vikings Boat Party.
4. The Nets shot 10 for 24 from three-point range in game 3
It’s not sustainable; the Nets in my opinion are still going to lose this series, unfortunately.
5. A fan tried to hug Derek Jeter
Let’s hope this is the last of this stupidity in his final season. All it takes is one detail gone awry and this could have been much worse. But leave it to Jeter to play it cool and handle it the way he did.
6. Jeff Weaver asked to be taken out of the baseball game
As a fantasy baseball manager I applaud this! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve lost a win, quality start, or took an unnecessary ERA hit because a player had too much bravado to come out of a game (or a manager let his pitcher stay in too long, see fact #17.)
7. Kyle Seager committed an error
Sunday afternoon, in the top of the 2nd inning, Kyle Seager committed an error, losing a potential double play. One strike out later (that would have ended the inning) Alcides Escobar hit a grand slam. Let this be a lesson that fielding DOES matter, and wins and loses aren’t always tallied by “strike outs and home runs.”
8. Yu Darvish took a no-hitter into the final out of the 9th inning against the Red Sox
The second story line would be the Ortiz error and/or hit that he is currently petitioning for, a quote from the official scorer reads “In my judgment, when the ball goes up in the air, I felt like the 2B or RF under normal effort could’ve caught the ball”; but stranger scoring things have happened in Texas before…
9. Michael Sam was drafted by the St. Louis Rams
Welcome to the NFL, this is a great story, and it will be an even bigger deal when it’s a no-story.
10. Oculus was purchased by Facebook for $2 Billion dollars
I saw their CEO speak on CNBC last week, and at first I wasn’t that impressed, nor could I imagine a situation where I would want to use this technology. Then, being the sports fan I am; I got to thinking watching a sporting event in virtual reality would be pretty cool (still nothing beats Fenway Park.)
11. The players championship drew a 2.6 television rating
This rating was down 54% from last year. Last year Tiger Woods closed with a 2-stroke victory; with Tiger out and aging, golf ratings are in trouble.
12. The KAHBANG Arts gallery opened this past weekend
Probably the coolest thing to happen to the Bangor art scene in a while, KAHBANG ARTS opened their non-profit gallery for artists to be showcased, they’ll be a free party every first Saturday of the month to welcome another installation; plus if you went this last weekend you would have been treated to free beer!
13. Donald Sterling spoke in an interview with Anderson Cooper
In Game of Thrones, Tyrion Lannister is sane and his jurors are crazy. In the National Basketball Association, Donald Sterling is crazy and his jurors (the public and the entire NBA) are sane. This is painful to watch, and just when you think he might have a sincere thing to say he self-sabotages it and goes completely in the opposite direction you were thinking.
14. Shelly Sterling spoke in an interview with Barbara Walters
I’m normally late to things, but Shelly Sterling has me beat. According to the interview she’s been trying to divorce Donald Sterling for 20 years; she is still not yet divorced. I don’t even have a response for that level of procrastination. It’s so ridiculous it’s impressive?
15. Tim Duncan has played in 220 NBA Playoff games, and counting
Meanwhile the Portland Trailblazers as an entire franchise have the same number; really makes you think about what the right draft pick can do, see fact #20.
16. Jose Fernandez was placed on the DL
Speculation is that he’s headed for Tommy-John surgery. Red Sox fans, it’s time to set your “Giancarlo Stanton count-down clocks.”
17. The Baltimore Orioles are 1st in the American League East
This says less about the Baltimore Orioles and more about the level of parody in the AL East right now; it’s a tight race. Thanks to Bud Norris and his 7th inning implosion, the Orioles lost Monday letting the rest of the AL East catch up another game.
18. Max Scherzer pitches against the Red Sox this Friday
The 2013 Cy Young award winner is visiting Fenway, and as a fan of baseball and a fan of pitching it’s always a treat when you can watch amazing pitchers; hopefully something will rub-off on Clay Bucholz but I’m not holding my breath.
19. The 139th running of the Preakness happens this weekend
California Chrome is a magical story, and I’m rooting for the horse to win the second leg of the Triple Crown. For me, it is less about the Triple Crown and more packing the greatest sports month of the year with more drama. This June is further enhanced by the World Cup, with all things considered you’ll have The Stanley Cup Finals, The NBA Finals, Major League Baseball, The World Cup, and potentially a triple crown; June the greatest sports month.
20. The NBA draft lottery is less than a week away
I’ve invested an entire Celtics season for this day to come.
“23” More Facts…
21. LeBron James scored 49 points in game 4
While the game was impressive, what’s more impressive is how I was watching it live on my cellphone in a Starbucks. Sports at your fingertips, we’ve come a long way with mobile technology and it’s an amazing time to be a sports fan; not an amazing time to be a Nets fan.
22. The Boston Bruins will play a game 7 this Wednesday
Playoff Hockey is the best type of hockey. Two original six teams going head to head in a Game 7. You can catch it live here on the ticket at 7 p.m.
23. Michael Jordan wore the number “23”
When I can, I’ll give three extra facts as homage to the greatest major sport athlete I have witnessed in my lifetime. In my opinion in an age of free-agent athletes there’s only one that can have no price that is too high; “you pay for Michael Jordan.”
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