Tuesday, November 22, 2005

I'm Thinking

by SonDog

Today's veritable pu-pu platter of sports news:

I) The Seattle Mariners signed Japanese catcher Fukoka SoftBank Hawks, who recently played for Kenji Johjima in the... no, wait... maybe it's Kenji Johjima who recently played for the Fukoka SoftBank Hawks. Regardless, it's supposed to be a pretty big signing for Seattle. There are a couple things about this move that are curious, however. 1) Isn't the catcher's relationship with the pitching staff pretty critical to the success of the team? Now, if the catcher can't speak English, how in the hell is he supposed to communicate with the pitching staff? Seriously, who is going to translate this? 2) How good will Seattle's announcers have to be this year? With Ichiro Suzuki, Kenji Johjima, Cha Seung Baek (who's actually South Korean), Shin-Soo Choo (who's also South Korean), there is an inordinate amount of hilarity that is promising to come from the Fox Sports Northwest broadcast team in 2006. Could you imagine Yogi Berra or Harry Carey trying to pronounce these guys? On the unintentional comedy scale, this has to be about a 9.5. I cannot tell you how much I'm hoping Seattle hires two 70-year-old white men with southern drawls.

II) Sacramento Kings' color commentator, Jerry Reynolds, recently released a book titled, Reynolds Remembers: 20 Years with the Sacramento Kings. First off, I've been a Kings fan since the team moved to Sacramento in 1985. I can honestly remember sitting by an AM radio as a kid and keeping an official tally on rebounds, points, and assists by players like Lionel Simmons, Duane Causwell, Anthony Bonner, Waymon Tisdale, Spud Webb, Mitch Richmond and many others. Reynolds was either the coach or GM for most of those years. Let me tell you, those teams could suck a golf ball out of a garden hose. Unless Reynolds' book is a self-deprecating narrative about how bad he was at player evaluations, I don't think it's going to be much of a read. Couple that with a foreword by Kings' announcer Grant Napear, and you have a book that will undoubtedly fly off of bookshelves faster than a herd of turtles stampeding through peanut butter.

III) It was reported on ESPNews tonight that the Philadelphia Eagles are forfeiting the remainder of their season now that Terrell Owens and Donovan McNabb will both be out for the year. I mean, how can you continue having a soap opera if the leading actor and actress are off the show? Isn't this like The OC continuing with production with Benjamin McKenzie in rehab and Mischa Barton suffering from a bulimia-induced ulcer in her trachea?

Take away T.O. and Donovan, and all you are left with is Seth and Sandy... er, I mean, Brian Westbrook and L.J. Smith.

IV) I now have something in common with McNabb. We've both had a hernia operation. Nevermind the fact that mine came when I was 9-years-old. I like to think it had something to do with the playground football rather than a birth defect. Donovan, I feel your pain. And, seriously, even though I was only 9... it was painful. My dad actually purchased four boxes of Topps baseball cards for me when I had my operation. I hope you have the same gifts on the way.

V) I will write close to 2,000 words on this topic later, but I am changing my original analysis on the San Antonio Spurs. Yes, they are still the best team in basketball, without question. To remind you, this is what I posted a couple of weeks ago:

San Antonio is going to win the whole thing. It's over. Don't even bother watching anymore. That being said, can there be a MORE boring team in the NBA? No, wait. Can there be a MORE boring superstar than Tim Duncan? Good Lord. These guys make an AA support meeting seem like a fraternity party. Duncan makes a James Lipton interview look like an interview with Richard Simmons. And, with that, I'm officially out of analogies.
Well, after watching San Antonio dismantle Sacramento last night (for 41 out of 48 minutes), I'm changing my mind. Duncan still has the personality of a tennis shoe insert, but man is he fun to watch simply because he is the most fundamentally sound player in the NBA. Add Manu Ginobili plowing through the lane like a tailback and Tony Parker sprinting around the court like his jock strap is on fire, and this team is impressive to watch. They are an absolute machine right now. When Big Shot Bob Horry can sit the bench for 47 minutes, only to come in the game for the last minute to secure a huge rebound, you know your bench is deep. This could be the best basketball team since the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls.
Mike Bibby got his head stuck in Duncan's rear during this shot. It was the kind of view the Kings' had all night long.
VI) Peja Stojakovic missed last night's matchup with the Spurs due to a "slight strain of his pinky." Another injury report on Stojakovic, however, read: "Stojakovic will miss tonight's game as he misplaced his heart on the flight between Seattle and Sacramento. He is now day-to-day." Really, how soft do you have to be to miss a game with a pinky injury? Remember, Ronnie Lott once told doctors to cut his dislocated pinky off so he could play that week's game.
VII) If you have a chance, pick up this week's Newsweek and read the article on John McCain. Trust me, just read it.

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