Jan Ullrich gets three of those Tour de France titles. Yes, Jan Ullrich who was booted out of cycling for doping. Ivan Basso gets the 2005 Tour victory. Basso was suspended in 2006 for doping. Guess who gets Armstrong’s 2002 Criterium du Dauphine victory? Floyd Landis, who was stripped of the 2006 Tour victory for doping and has since famously admitted to doping for much of the early 2000s.
Simply the greatest. Bow down to the king. Even if he lost the US Open
He floated by Robin Soderling fairly easily in three sets (6-1 7-6 6-4) to win his first ever French Open title, and to add one more to up his career total to fourteen. At this point, it’s hard to argue against Roger being the best ever. He’s now tied with Pete Sampras for the most career titles ever, he’s won everywhere, and he had a ridiculous stretch as the #1 player in the world. His grace on the court, his shot-making, and his class off it has forever made me a fan. I hope everyone out there loves his play too. He’s cemented his legacy as a consummate professional, but his genuine tears of joy today also showed many of his haters (however many remain) he is NOT a robot out there. He’s simply so determined, he won’t let his emotions get the best of him inbetween the lines.
According to Will Carroll, Manny Ramirez has been suspended 50 games, to start immediately, for testing positive for a performance enhancer called HGC, which is used for infertility and causes men to synthesize testosterone. Oh Manny.
Brett Favre is, once again, toying with coming out of retirement. This time he’s in legitimate serious talks with Minnoseta Vikings’ head coach Brad Childress, who was forced to throw Tarvaris Jackson out there for the entirety of last season. That folly showed itself in the Vikings’ playoff game against the Philadelphia Eagles, so one could see why Childress would jump at the chance in fielding a hall of famer. However, this hall of famer? Not if they want to win. It didn’t work for the Jets last year, as he wilted down the stretch. His age showed, as did his poor decisions.
Brett Favre is done. It’s over Brett. No offense, and there’s no reason you shouldn’t be allowed to play, but this back-and-forth in regards to retirement has to stop. You’re worse than an old boxer.
Manny Pacquiao was undersized last night, but that was no problem for the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world as he knocked Ricky Hatton out COLD for three minutes in the second round. He did this in front of a decidedly pro-Hatton crowd Hatton’s gameplan was utter shit, coming out overly-aggressive to try and overwhelm the smaller Pacquiao.
While there were moments early in the first round where it looked like Hatton. was smothering Pac, it was actually Pac just looking for a spot to work his magic. His speed was way too much for Hatton, who refused to move his head. He opened himself up way too much and Pacquiao took advantage halfway through the first round with a punch to the jaw. Hatton fell to the ground, shocking many in attendance. Hatton got up but Pacquiao knocked him down 30 seconds later. They played out the rest of the first round and went back to their corners, but something was in the air now. Pacquiao was almost literally landing all of his punches, and Hatton was missing or barely hitting Pac-Man. One could feel the match coming to an end soon, with Hatton reeling and Pacquiao having all the confidence and momentum in the world.
The second round came, and he threw the best punch of his career, landing a left square on Hatton’s unprotected jaw, sending him down to the mat for several minutes. Hatton remained unconcious for quite a while as about a third of the arena erupted while the rest of the arena remained dead silent. It was an eery sight to see Hatton motionless, completely vulnerable. His second attempt to be called the best pound-for-pound fighter ended in a similar way to his previous bout with Floyd Mayweather. That fight saw Hatton emloy a similar reckless style, and Mayweather picked him apart and knocked him down in the tenth round. The Hitman’s career may not be able to be resuscitated afte this one. Maybe it’s time to call Manny the career-killer.
What next for Manny? Politics? Let’s hope he holds off until a showdown between him and Floyd Mayweather Jr. happens. Yes, the formerly retired Mayweather has come out of retirement and is going to face Juan Manuel Marquez in two months. Then, who knows? A Mayweather-Pacquiao matchup could happen, and would be a dream. Two guys at the top of their game, who’ve defeated the same competition, facing off in the ring to see who’s the best.
Meet your new champ, who defeated the old champ. Mike Scroggins defeated 2008 champion Norm Duke 191-173 in the finals of the 66th annual U.S. Open in North Brunswick, New Jersey. Scroggins got there in amazing fashion, upsetting Chris Barnes 200-199 when Barnes left a disgusting stone-8 pin in the 10th frame, and then left a ringing 10-pin to lose by one. Scroggins then sat down in the 10th frame of his match with Duke and saw Duke struggle his way to second place.
This is Scroggins’ sixth PBA victory, and his second major. The $100,000 he won yesterday was well-earned after really becoming a solid pro bowlers of the past few seasons. He proved himself on the brutal U.S. Open conditions, and has shown himself to be one of the top ten bowlers in the nation.
As for the best bowler in the nation? That would be Wes Malott, who held off challenges from both Chris Barnes and Norm Duke to become the overall points leader for the 2009 season. That makes him the PBA’s 2009 Player of the Year. Barnes, 2008′s POTY, would’ve clinched the title with a win yesterday. So would’ve Duke, and so it was a stone-8 pin that saved the title for Malott. Malott’s had quite a season, winning four titles, including the Etonic Marathon Open. He certainly deserved the recognition that this will bring him. Oh, and he also got into it with Mike Wilbon.
Hailing from Australia, international bowling star Jason Belmonte came over the Pacific to not just compete in the Professional Bowler’s Association but to do well. He’s done just that after Sunday’s victory at the Bowling Foundation Long Island Classic (what a great name). Belmonte, the first two-hander to win a PBA tournament, defeated Bill O’Neil and Michael Fagan to take home the title. The tournament was unique in that there were two different oil patterns on the two lanes, and Belmonte showed his prowess on both. While he’s previously been around the world bowling in major tournaments, winning a PBA title in his first year on the tour is quite an accomplishment. Congrats, Jason.
Next week’s tourney stops in North Brunswick, NJ for the US Open, probably the most difficult and most prestigious tournament on the PBA Tour. Should you have $500 for the non-PBA member fee, you can even bowl.
I was really rooting for Octotime. Oh well. Free throws were the difference.
And he’s only requesting a 57 pin handicap. Wilbon, the bald(er) one on ESPN’s Pardon the Interruption, is a casual bowler. He even has his own shoes! Well, he and pro bowler Wes ‘Big Nasty’ Malott, current points leader on the Pro Bowler’s Association, got into a spat when Wilbon called Malott out for not bowling in last week’s Plastic Ball Challenge tournament. Instead of bowling, Malott took the week off, came back and won the incedibly difficult Etonic Marathan Open. This tournament involved bowling on a different pattern every single day, requiring multiple lines to the pocket. Malott won with ease, raised the trophy and then asked ‘What now Wilbon?!’ live on ESPN.
Wilbon recently responded on PTI:
Bring it on Malott! Michael Wilbon and his shiny head of justice are going to go for it! He’s going to get you for your trash talk! Malott v Wilbon (+57)! Who will win?!