With no NBA or NHL games until Tuesday, and spring training camps only starting to open, we are left with a lot of Olympic developments through the weekend, correct?
Of course, starting with the fact that UnderArmour, the athletic training outfit company, is being blamed in part for the sorry showing of the U.S. speedskaters. Apparently a vent in the back that was supposed to act as a cooling mechanism turned out to suck in air and create drag that reduced the Americans to reasonably priced cars in a world of Lamborghinis. At least that’s part of the explanation provided by Sports Illustrated, though there are others. And while we are not experts in such things, we did think tailoring pleats into the skaters’ outfits would come back to bite them.
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Miami’s LeBron James, still holding the murder weapon in Wednesday’s 111-110 Warrior loss, has been unduly fixated on his legacy lately, between the Mount Rushmore answer and now this, via Bleacher Report’s Ethan Skolnick:
[RELATED: Name your 'NBA Mount Rushmore']
“When does he think the pressure will truly shift to Durant to take the Larry O'Brien trophy? ‘When I retire,’ James replied. ‘When I retire. They're still talking about, am I going to win a third? You know . . .’”
Hmm, maybe the knees are starting to bark a little more between games, or the travel is becoming more of a grind, or maybe he’s just sick of listening to the people nagging him about the stupid dunk contest. But we’ll still bet with some confidence that he won’t be doing any legacy interviews come April.
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Major League Baseball, a business that doesn’t blink at giving A.J. Burnett $16 million for one year’s worth of pitching (maybe), is getting theirs back on the other end by voting itself the right to slash retirement pensions of its non-uniformed employees, including secretaries, scouts, front-office executives, and minor league staff (courtesy Adam Rubin of ESPN). Rob Manfred, MLB’s chief operating officer and occasionally mentioned as a potential successor to Bud Selig, has said no team has yet acted to reduce employee pension benefits, but the fact that they voted themselves the power to do so means they will, at some point when they think nobody is looking.
And why? Because they can, and because they do that in their other businesses. That’s the one thing they all know about baseball – squeezing people who can’t squeeze back.
If this seems an unduly strident stance in the face of no teams actually having whacked any pensions yet, put it this way – you never vote yourself rights or powers you have no intention of using. In the meantime, let’s keep an eye on Scroogeco Industries – particularly when Mike Trout gets his 10-year $350M contract.
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The H&R Block commercial that claims everyone who does his or her own taxes loses an average of $500 was filmed at Candlestick Park, with a forlorn-looking usher pretending to drop a 5-C bundle on every seat. Knowing our city and its legendary efficiency, it will delay the demolition of the building for months in case the film crew left actual money.
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And finally, Cal football coach Sonny Dykes tweeted this as part of the ongoing bitchfest about the proposed clock rule aimed at stifling hurry-up offenses:
“New rule slowing down college football at its height of popularity isn't about player safety, it's about a who runs college football.”
Well, in a very difficult year for him and the program, he got that one right.