Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Tuesday A.M. Wrap: More Lance Trouble?

Lance's teammates 'fess up to EPO: Two of Lance's teammates in '99 confess to using EPO – more incredibly damning (albeit still circumstantial) evidence that the chance Lance wasn't using SOMETHING was low. It's just that Lance wasn't LANCE in '99 – he was just a dude trying to break through. And the sport was SO thoroughly corrupted with illegal drugs, it's hard to believe that he steered clear. Maybe, coming off the cancer, he avoided them. Maybe he's SUCH a once-in-a-lifetime athlete that he avoided them. But it's VERY hard to shake the perception questioning how he could have possibly NOT done it?

AL Central: Tigers freaking yet? The Twins won last night, putting them just 1.5 GB the Tigers in the AL Central. But Detroit fans shouldn't freak until the Tigers lose the Wild Card, too. As recent playoff history has shown, the important thing isn't winning the division anymore; it's making the playoffs, any way you can.

The Marlins absolutely crushed the Mets 16-5, and it's games like that where you truly realize how special this Florida team is this year. I really hope they make the playoffs, but I'm not holding my breath.

Papi vs. Jeter: After Ortiz ripped Jeter over the AL MVP vote, DJ – obviously – took the high ground, refusing to engage. Papi's going to lose the MVP; Jeter is very likely going to win (unless there's a late-breaking "Anyone But Jeter (Except for Papi)" campaign. I'd be all for that, actually.

Packers pick up Koren Robinson: It's gotten this bad this quickly that they gotta sign the guy likely to be suspended the rest of the season?

(Meanwhile, how does Robinson fit into Mike McCarthy's "driving-blunder-the-influence" play-calling that emphasizes the run?)

Pats trade Branch to Seahawks: Presumably, things can only get better for Seattle after that sorry 9-point opening game.

Pats file tampering charge against Jets over Branch: This seems kind of petty, given that they just traded him.

Trent Green out indefinitely: As if Herman Edwards' "short-bus" school of offensive philosophy needed more obstacles.

The Commish wants to meet with Jansen over Jansen's HGH claims. Jansen already backtracked, claiming he didn't know that "15 to 20 percent" was such a big number. Uh, yeah, right.

QBs Bledsoe and Collins still starting, even though their teams lost. The Cowboys are a Week 2 loss away from hitting the Panic button; the Titans have already all but admitted this year is a throwaway anyway.

I was thrilled to hear that the 19-year-old Clemson football player who is taking care of his 11-year-old brother was given a special dispensation by the NCAA to earn more money than the max allowed by rules. A rare example of good sense and compassion by the NCAA.

JJ Redick pleads guilty to DUI: And I'll bet that if he was less of a, um, "Duke"-type player, they would have thrown the book at him.

Toni Kukoc to retire? Best known for (a) being Euro before being Euro was cool; (b) the awesome nickname "The Waiter"; and (c) having more rings than Barkley.

Suns eyeing Kandi Man: Given PHX's record with taking other team's trash and turning it into treasure, how much do you want to bet Olowokandi turns into a productive big man within that roster?

"Dancing with the Stars 3: Emmittric Bugaloo." Full preview coming later today, but needless to say, my money's on A.C. Slater.

(Here's a fun fact: More people will watch this first episode of "DWTS3" than the entire lifespan of "ESPN Hollywood," which Mario Lopez hosted.)

-- D.S.

24 comments:

Francois said...

For all those who are amazed at the Florida Marlins and their great young no-names:
there's a reason they have so many good young players : they stole the scouting documents and computers from the expos when Jeffrey Loria sold them to MLB in 2002:
http://espn.go.com/mlb/columns/stark_jayson/1347770.html

Effectively, it's as though they instantly doubled their scouting recruiting budget.

Anonymous said...

why wasn't the DQ picked up by any other major sports site and its stuck here on blogspot, oh how the "mighty" have fallen.

Anonymous said...

1. Marlins are scary. Great young players allowed to play through their mistakes. Led by an old-timer all of 24 years old. And a 41-year-old manager as old school as they get- with the blessing of Joe Torre and Don Zimmer. As a Phillies fan, I hope the owner messes it all up and practically hands Joe Girardi to the Cubs. For the Phils' sake.

2. How charming that the Clemson player caring for his 11-year-old brother can actually get stipends. Mom's a druggie, Dad's a gambler, the older brother doesn't want him back to them. At least the NCAA didn't go through with the adage, 'no good deed goes unpunished.'

3. We Eagles fans look forward to a long, hard year from both the Skins and the Boys. Dan Snyder is Jeff Lurie's evil twin- the exact opposite of who Lurie is and what he stands for. Caveat- a high school classmate is their principal p.r. person. Among the few women in any sport holding a job of that responsibility. Dan- have fun watching Tom Cruise and his school of Hollywood sharks chew you up and spit you out.

Mike said...

Hey, I remember ESPN Hollywood... I only liked it so I could watch the cute Canadian who used to be on Cold Pizza... and I totally can't remember her name.

Mike (Xenia, OH)

gerard e. said...

Amendment- my high school classmate works for Jeff Lurie. Class follows class.

Mark (Austin, TX) said...

Ok not to be a nitpicker, but don't the Twins and Tigers play in the AL Central not the AL East?

So onto substansive stuff, the Tigers are completly choking this away and if they don't make the playoffs (coolstandings still has them at 96%), it may go down as one of the all time collapses.

As for MVP, I am starting to believe in Johan Santana more and more. Yes I know it usually goes to position players, but Santana has carried that team in the second half and into the playoffs probably. And that sick winning percentage after the All-Star break proves he is as clutch as any day to day player.

I am officially on the Marlins bandwagon. I think it would be the funniest thing for them to make the playoffs, and it gives me hope for my hometown Royals and Rockies...maybe...

The NCAA does have a heart! I am shocked, shocked!

As for DWTS, I am not going to watch, but I am just going to root for Jerry Springer since he makes the most dramatic difference between celebrity status (sleaze king) and dancing stud (class personified?).

jason said...

I think it's funny when people get surprised whenever these "Lance was doping" stories comes up. His rivals, Ivan Basso and Jan Ulrich, were banned from the event because of doping. Floyd Landis, the winner of this year's event, was stripped of the title because of doping. Unless Lance Armstrong is superman, or the greatest athlete ever, then he had to have been on something sometime over his 7 year run.

And you know what, I don't think it's cheating, because everyone in that sport is doing it.

Christian (High Point, NC) said...

Whoa whoa whoa, Dan! So if Tennessee is admitting that this season is a wash anyway, why aren't you screaming for them to play Vince Young? Isn't that your thing with the Packers, they should play Rodgers? Why aren't the Titans subjected to the same relentless mantra?

Todd Ching said...

As a Red Sox fan, I'm all for the ABJ: Anyone But Jeter campaign. It's all we have left.

Ummm... go Twins?

rob (warwick) said...

I'm saying it now. I'm rooting for the Twins the rest of the way. Sure my team (Red Sox) is done, but this is not a change of allegiance... call it resuscitation of a dormant fanship. (Besides, I can claim I'm grandfathered into the Twins fan base because I used to go to Fort Myers to watch the Twins in Spring Training before the Sox were even out of Winter Haven- I have a Chuck Knoblauch broken bat from Spring Training in their 1991 championship season to prove it.)

CorrND said...

Lost in the news that the Tigers are choking so badly compared to their AL Central competition is the fact that they lost home field advantage throughout the playoffs to the Yankees yesterday.

wonki said...

good pick on A.C. Slater. If you were a SBTB fan like I was, you're very familiar with his dancing skills. He tore it up at The Max.

shelly said...

Oh man, toni kukoc... the mere fact that i remember watching him and the bulls when i was home sick from 4th grade with the chicken pox probably signals that its time for him to go.

BSB said...

Are you crazy? You think Redick got special treatment for his DUI? Newsflash from someone that has had a friend get a DUI and another friend killed by a guy driving drunk...first offenders get off very lightly!

mark the ill said...

I second the Santana for MVP comment.

Matt (Fairfax) said...

AC Slater is the heavy favorite... Vegas is giving him 5-2 odds. Vivica A Fox is getting 9-2 odds and Monique Coleman (who's Monique Coleman?) is getting 11-2 odds. But I'll take the darkhorse, Joey Lawrence, at 6-1. Woaaaah!

virgil said...

I know it was a disappointing year for the Indians, but can my boy "PRONK"[Travis Hafner] get some love...just a little bit.

Paul said...

Khandi man showing something in Pheonix? Um, no. That guy is softer than a marshmellow between two pillows.

WuzUpG said...

I love this (Quickie) style of writing. Like old Tyson, quick hit and done.

Anonymous said...

Jeter vs. Papi... close, but Jeter's better:

- Papi's HR and RBI numbers should be higher considering he hits out of the 4, and Jeter hits from the leadoff or 2-spot. Jeter has scored only 4 fewer times than Papi. Point is, they both do a great job at the plate for the role that they play.
- Jeter's play in the field should be considered, where he is rock-solid... and has been for his entire career. Papi's only job is to hit... he should be batting well over .300 if he's going to be a "hitting specialist". I hate to go there for the DH, because I like it in the game... but it is MVPlayer, and not MVBatter.
- Don't talk clutch... Papi has Manny hitting behind him, and I guarantee that fact alone accounts for at least a few of his homers.
- Jeter has played at an incredibly high level in an unforgiving environment (just ask A-Rod)... and has done so for his entire career. This is intangible, but it shows just how special he is as a player. I contend that Jeter is actually UNDER-rated.

Go Jeter! You deserve it...

Kevin said...

ABJ (Anyone but Jeter) people - do the right thing and jump on the Johan Santana bandwagon! I'm going to post this every day until something changes. Call me a delusional optimist!

chris (ct) said...

my favorite kukoc moment is when mj and scottie embarrassed him in the '92 olympics. as for dwts3...gotta be emmitt b/c cheryl burke is fine.

Troy (Gainesville, FL) said...

Dan, maybe you've been missing it, or maybe you don't browse their site anymore, but ESPN.com has been all over the Anything-But-Jeter thing, championing a Dye-Morneau showdown.

Troy (Gainesville, FL) said...

Here's my thing about Lance: If all his teammates were doping, and if all his biggest rivals were doping--HOW WAS HE DOMINATING THEM WITHOUT DOPING?!?

I mean, it turns out one of two ways: 1) He's telling the truth, which makes him the greatest athlete ever, and 2) He's lying, which means he doped, not to get an advantage, but to even the score.

And I don't mean that as a justification or rationalization in preparation for the inevitable "Down Goes Lance!" story, but as something to think about: How much BETTER an athlete is he than he gets credit for if he really beat all those dopers by staying clean?