(Long Island, NY) The Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers now have ‘one for the thumb’. The Seattle Seahawk fans would like to give the officials one of those digits on their hands in appreciation for the hard work that they put in calling a fair game. And believe me it isn’t a thumbs up…..Games aren’t completely won or lost due to calls by the officiating crew. But they sure can change in a big way…..Big Ben was surely bailed out big time. He had a pretty lame game for a Super Bowl winning quarterback. But a W is a W. Congrats.
The Jets are asking Chad Pennington to take a pay cut the size of New Jersey. They want him to rework his contract which would make the majority of this year’s salary payable in incentives. Look, I understand that the guy has been out while collecting a nice chunk of change. But he did get hurt while playing for the team, not a pick-up 3 on 3 basketball tournament in the off season. I can see him doing something to help out the salary cap situation. But don’t act like the guy called in sick and went sneaking off to the beach.
Every time I hear anything about the hockey in the Winter Olympics I have to laugh. Or should I cry? It’s such a joke that all of these NHL professionals are out there playing against one another skating for their home countries and then they’ll be back on the same lines wearing their team sweaters once this charade finishes. I feel bad for the fans that never experienced the real Olympic hockey, mostly the 1980 Lake Placid games. That was a real tournament with amateurs playing their hearts out for their countries. And they actually lived in those places they represented. There was also that feeling of rivalries and bad blood. The Cold War was alive and kicking and the drama of facing teams from Communist nations had a different karma. Obviously peace in the world is more important than hockey. The only way to recapture some of that would be to have the Taliban lace up the blades against the good ‘ol US of A.
People have been getting on Chris “Mad Dog” Russo for his opinion on the Bryant Gumbel issue. But if you’re so defensive about allowing Gumbel to say what he felt about the Winter Olympics, politics, and racial issues then why are you chiding the Dog for stating his opinion? Life is a 2 way street and there are 2 sides to be said in every story. Gumbel had his and Russo should be given that same soapbox to let the listeners know what he feels about it…..Trust me I would rather hear talk about actual sports and not broadcasters interjecting themselves into other territories. But it was a topic that had to be addressed and it just snowballed…..Athletes and the people that cover them should just stick to the games. It is an escape from the real world and we fans are getting cheated when we lose time from the entertainment of sports to issues that we wanted to get away from in the first place.
LAST CALL: A big ‘Thumbs Up’ to Mike Utley. Seeing him at the Super Bowl is a reminder that even though sports are fun and games, it’s not always that. The former Detroit Lion offensive lineman had his life drastically altered with his paralyzing injury. But he did not let that ruin his positive attitude and his will to walk once again.
LONG ISLAND SPORTS UPDATE: The New York Dragons improved to 2-1 with an 83-81 win at Utah. Quarterback Aaron Garcia threw an incredible 10 touchdown passes to key the victory.
The Strong Island Sound picked up where they left off with 2 straight wins following the ABA all-star break. Home victories over the Maryland Nighthawks and the Harlem Strongdogs left them 1 game under .500 with a 13-14 record. Coming into the weekend the Sound were ranked 16th in the ABA Power Rankings. Victories over two top 10 teams will most likely propel the Sound higher when the league’s weekly rating system is updated.