Keith and I are playing a show tonight, so there’s no time to post anything today. We’ll be back Monday with some new shit, including NFL free agency, spring training, EPL football and NBA action. Until then, in the spirit of the best sports comedy website around – Kissing Suzy Kolber – enjoy the following photo, which IS sports related.
Monthly Archives: February 2009
That’s new Rangers head coach John Tortorella, back when he coached the Tampa Bay Lightning, displaying his legendary rapport with the media. Watch the whole 2 minutes for the full context of just how prickish he can be when pissed off. Or, if you’re someone who can’t wait until Christmas morning to open your presents, just watch from the 1:06 mark to witness his trademark candor.
One the one hand this is funny because it’s a coach telling an ink-stained wretch to fuck off on live television. On the other hand, the guy he’s telling off, Rangers beat writer Larry Brooks, actually likes Tortorella. Maybe not personally (although he might), but at least professionally. He’s been lobbying for Torts to take over behind the Rangers bench for weeks. That says something about my new favorite Italian coach at MSG. (Sorry D’Antoni, you had a good run there.)
It’s the old cliche: you replace a players coach with a hard ass, or vice versa. The Rangers have followed the script to the letter. On Monday they canned Tom Renney, who if he were an ice cream flavor wouldn’t just be vanilla, he’d be non-fat, sugar-free, gluten-free, soy-based, government issued vanilla. They replaced him with a guy who would be Ben and Jerry’s Fiery Hot Pokers Up Your Dickhole. You could say he’s a little intense.
This needed to happen. The Rangers are currently hanging on to a playoff spot, but Renney had lost the team. They were going through the motions and spiraling out of control on a 2-7-3 run over the last 12 games. Renney was just too nice, and his Canadian farmboy “gosh darn gee whiz” act had grown stale. I’ll always have a soft spot in my heart for the coach who brought respectability back to a franchise that had become the laughingstock of the entire NHL, but he wasn’t the guy to push them over the top. But Tom, seriously, thanks for the three straight playoff appearances and two straight trips to the second round. After seven straight years out of the postseason, you did a bang up job.
So now we get Tortorella for the second time. Huh? Yep, Torts actually was the Rangers interim head coach for the last four games of the 1999-2000 season, after the team dumped relic John Muckler. And even though they were horrible and playing out the string, and Torts was in charge for the first time in his career – on an interim basis, mind you – he swung his big dick around by benching star forward Theo Fleury for a game for insubordination. Bellissimo!
This lovable ginzo Masshole never stopped swinging that dick. He went to Tampa and immediately stripped the captaincy from Vincent LeCavalier, then benched him for not playing defense. Did it work? Vinny went on to become a superstar, and the Lightning won the 2004 Stanley Cup with Tortorella raging at his players and officials the whole way. Eventually that style wears thin too, and he was fired after Tampa had a disappointing season last year. Still, he was the best coach available, and I’m glad the Rangers finally saw the light and made the move.
So welcome back to Broadway, John Tortorella. I hope you kick some ass in the dressing room. Between him and the imminent return of NHL Public Enemy No. 1 Sean Avery, the Rangers will actually be fun to watch again.
Whether or not the Knicks make the upcoming NBA playoffs, this season is already an unquestioned success because the team has finally rid itself of point guard Stephon Marbury. Hallefuckinglujah! Donnie Walsh and Mike D’Antoni especially knew the first step on the road back to respectability started with banishing this cancer, which they did shortly after the season began. And now comes word that they’ve finally cut the chord for good and settled on a buyout so Marbury can start poisoning another team with his special brand of crazy, most likely Boston. Hey Steph, you need a ride to the airport?
(Seriously – do you need a ride? I finally have a car, and I live in south Brooklyn. I can swing by your baby mama’s crib in Coney Island. It’s only like 15 minutes to JFK from there. Call me bro.)
I may have posted this on an earlier incarnation of IKH, but I hate Stephon Marbury more than any other player that’s ever been on one of my teams. That’s really saying something, because I have a LOT of hate for a lot of guys over the years. Someday I’ll post about them, but today is reserved for Marbury, because I don’t want to water it down with cheap Dave Brown, Mike Keane, Larry Hughes (too soon?) or Roberto Alomar Jr. bashing.
“Let me tell about the most exciting 0-0 game I (you) ever saw. The visceral amidst the existential; the existants channeling etherea. Humanity pits against itself like so many peaches against the fruit jars of tomorrow’s pies.
There was no evidence of a struggle. There were neither spears nor pepper in the post-game mint. No pink hearts, no green clovers. Just blue diamond after blue diamond.
Child after child drank from the hooligan hose, attached delicately via duct tape and barrette to the douchenozzle that is Manchester United. We older kids convinced them it was sport drink and they’d grow up to be strong and popula like George Best.
But really, a mixture of love, disco moves, marmite and Grandma Sanchez’s lemonade doesn’t taste like success. It takes like chess, beaten across the brow and nipples like a cat ‘o’nine tails. And that why they call it the Beautiful Game.” -Nick Hornby, Fever Pitch
I haven’t quite come upon the preceding passages in the book ‘Fever Pitch’ by Nick Hornby, which is about his love for the Arsenal football franchise (but *really* about his own life growing up, lest you thought I missed the point Mr. New York Times Book Review or douchebag hipster.) But 50 pages in, I recognize that this book would register more if I knew who or what the fuck he was talking about.
I respect that I’m a colicky newborn when it comes to European football, but I’ve recently shown an earnest enjoyment and dedication to the sport. So I thought I’d compare and contrast the Champions League into a language Westerners can understand. Continue reading
Last night was a wooly one at the Garden, As lil’ Nate put in 41 points, the highest Knick total at MSG so far this year. Hernandez actually could’ve got tickets to this one, but couldn’t take them — I told him it was probably for the best, as the Pacers were missing their top scorers and the Knicks would be tired from playing yesterday in Canada, which is thousands of miles away and close to the Arctic outpost, I’m told.
I watched the first half and I was right — both teams stunk. Announcer Mike Breen called the game ‘ugly’, ‘hard on the eyes’, ‘brutal’. The only highlight for me was that Larry Hughes, in his Knicks home debut turned polite applause upon his first entry into unmitigated boos halfway through the second quarter. Welcome to New York, fuckface! I turned it off at halftime.
As usually happens in situations like these, I missed a high-scoring energetic second half, where Nate scored 32 points, hit big free throws down the stretch and led the Knicks to a win that was, admittedly, a lot closer than it should have been, but hey, you take them.
In case you didn’t immediately recognize the honky ‘fro, the jersey recipient in the photograph is none other than Will Ferrell. I like that celebrities come out to sporting events, but it’s a little creepy when the players are this enamored with the celebrities. Look at the passion and man-love in Nate’s eyes:
And, cue the strings. I wonder what Will’s whispering to Lil’ Nate here? ‘Room 1307 at the W, big boy. I’ll show you how to shake ‘n’ bake.’
Also, that big guy seems to be inching closer and closer to the pair (or dare I say couple?) as these shots progress. Looks like he might be looking for some sloppy seconds, or even better some 3rd-man-in action.
“I have to look at the bigger picture. The big picture is that Shahar Peer didn’t get a chance to play, but making an immediate decision we also have to look at sponsors, fans and everyone who has invested a lot in the tournament. Sponsors are important to us. We wouldn’t be here without sponsors and we can’t let them down.” – Venus Williams, speaking about why she didn’t boycott the Dubai Tennis Championship after it barred Peer, who is from Israel, from playing in the tournament because it would “antagonize” fans.
Ummm, Venus? I don’t know if you noticed, but you’re black. And a woman. Do you see a “bigger picture” there, or did your sponsors not tip you off to it? How could you play in this tournament after it blatantly discriminated against a fellow athlete? If they said you and your sister couldn’t play because you’re black we’d never hear the end of it. It would literally be an international incident, and rightfully so. You got a problem with Jews or something? This is outrageous.
It’s sad to see Venus take the Michael Jordan/Tiger Woods path of least resistance. One of the main reasons I hate both of those dicks with a passion is because they have no principles, apart from getting what’s theirs. They’re so beholden to their sponsors, to their image, to their disgusting fucking greed that they refuse to state an opinion on anything, afraid they might lose an endorsement opportunity. In their world, money rules all – principles, politics and responsibility be damned. I have no respect for them, and now I have no respect for Venus Williams either.
Way to honor Black History Month, you greedy bitch.
According to the Sports Guy’s league sources, the NBA is in deep doo-doo financially, and there’s a strong possibility a few franchises will soon have to move to remain viable. There’s even talk of the dreaded C word – contraction, not cunt, although it IS fun to type cunt. NBA Commissioner David Stern is deeply against the idea, which is understandable, because no one wants to be the guy in charge of a league that’s shrinking. A commissioner’s whole mandate is to expand as much as possible. But that mandate has gone too far over the years (I’m looking at your weasly ass Gary Bettman), and leagues have become bloated with suckass teams in unworkable, unrealistic markets. Sorry folks, but apart from Andy Reid’s waistline and Oprah Winfrey’s ego, nothing can expand forever. Commissioners have always fought contraction crooked teeth and dirty nails, but now they’ve got a perfect cover story; the shitty economy. If these leagues can’t drop a few deadweight franchises now, it’s never going to happen.
In the long run contraction would ultimately be better for the owners’ bottom line AND for fans. Competition would increase because you’d have more good players on fewer teams, and we wouldn’t have to pretend to care about places like Oklahoma City and Columbus that aren’t worth two shits. That’s a win-win, baby. It’s with this charitable spirit in mind that I’m going to make some suggestions on which teams should be dropped from the NBA, NHL and MLB. I’m leaving the NFL out of this because I like it just the way it is.