Friday, August 20, 2010

08/20 Quickie: Tillman, Spiller, Lilly

Names to Know: Pat Tillman, Roger Clemens, Ted Lilly, CJ Spiller, Wes Welker, Percy Harvin, Kyle Orton, Brian Cushing, Rudy Fernandez, Ryan Lochte, BlogPoll and More.

"The Tillman Story" releases today: I have said this before -- the Pat Tillman story is one of the most defining of this era. Everything about this movie screams "must-see." But don't expect it to be anything but painful, frustrating, maddening.

The cover-up -- at so many levels, it is excruciating -- and disinformation campaign is staggering. Everyone involved in abusing and distorting and shaming Tillman's intentions, actions and legacy should live their lives with an ongoing sense of shame.

A few years ago, I called Pat Tillman's story -- and, really, the story of his parents' search for the truth -- one of the Top 5 most powerful and important sports stories of the last century. I stand by that.

Roger Clemens indicted: Far more interesting was the debut of his Twitter feed, which was greeted with general mockery. Why don't the handlers of these rich athletes hire a decent ghostwriter?

Ted Lilly, post-trade to Dodgers, is quickly becoming one of my favorite stories in baseball. Last night was arguably Lilly's best start ever: A 2-hit complete-game shut-out, with 11Ks.

NFL Preseason: CJ Spiller... CJ Spiller... CJ Spiller. (I was shut out of getting Spiller in my morning draft yesterday -- yoinked 3 picks ahead of where I was going to snag him -- but I got him in my evening draft. (BTW: What happened to enthusiasm in Toronto for the NFL? Crowd was 15,000 less than capacity.)

Wes "Welkah" makes 2 catches: Speaking of fantasy drafts, I went long on Tom Brady, taking him in the 2nd round of both of yesterday's drafts. Typically, I wait on drafting QBs until later; then again, typically I stink in fantasy leagues. Trying a new tactic this year.

Percy Harvin hospitalized: Let's hope he's OK. When healthy, one of the most dynamic talents in the league. But rarely healthy. To be competitive, the Vikings need him.

Full weekend of NFL preseason games: As always, the focus is on watching if any key starters get injured, how bad the injury is and what the impact on the fantasy season might be. Plus: Will Big Ben play? Oh, and seeing if Sam Bradford can take a hit. (Yes, I recognize the irony that Tim Tebow was injured on his first big hit in the pros. He will miss this weekend's game; I take solace knowing that Sam Bradford can't even attempt that kind of play, because he would crumple.)

Obligatory Tebow item: The Broncos extended Kyle Orton's deal into 2011. Does that mean that they expect Orton to continue to be the starter next season (implicitly, that Tebow will NOT be the starter next season?) Interesting -- I think most Broncos fans did not see that coming.

(I did NOT draft Tebow in my P&G fantasy league -- certainly not with the No. 1 overall pick, although I joked about it. I was planning to take him in the final, 15th round but KSK's Josh Zerkle took him in the 12th round, apparently to spite me. In my other draft yesterday, I did take Tebow with my final pick, in the 16th round.)

Brian Cushing 4-game suspension upheld by NFL: Didn't expect otherwise.

NBA fines Rudy Fernandez for dissing the NBA: That isn't likely to inspire Rudy to want to stay in the NBA. (Why can't the Blazers trade him to a team that will give him more of a role? I'd love to have him on the Wiz, pairing in the backcourt with Wall. Fernandez is like a less-idiotic version of Nick Young.)

Michael Phelps Watch: Has Ryan Lochte passed him?

BlogPoll Top 25: Last chance for comments and input. I will try to have my first pass at a ballot by the end of the day (tomorrow at the latest -- know it's the weekend, sorry.)

In addition to a BlogPoll post, later today is the final day of my Summer Reading Series, including a confession. Should be posted around noon/1.

Enjoy your weekend, everyone. I'll be posting the usual "Very" Quickies on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

-- D.S.


Unknown said...

It's amazing how an athlete can absolutely demolish the competition one year, then just be terrible the next (Phelps, NFL running backs). Kinda puts Armstrong's success up there in either amazement or suspicion.

Al Neri said...

You're wrong as usual Shanoff. There was no cover-up in the Tillman case. Slow delivery of the facts, yes; but no cover up. The Army did a thorough investigation and the media played up the story long before the facts came out. Delve a little deeper next time; your shallow comments should be reserved for sports arguments.