Tag Archives: Tour de France

Weekly Nickel 7-18-2011

Photo courtesy of myhero.com. How many people pay attention to cycling in the post Lance Armstrong (pictured above) era.

By Josh Kramer

We watched Japan shock the USA in the Women’s World Cup final yesterday.  In addition, we got to witness a first time Major champion in Darren Clarke at Royal St. George’s.  Lastly, baseball came back in a big way following a dismal All Star Break.  It was a fantastic past week.

Here is what to watch for this week.

5.  The NBA shenanigans will continue.  Do not expect anything substantial to occur in terms of negotiations, but do expect to possible watch some stars entertain the prospects of playing in Europe.  Sadly, this is what the NBA has come to.  With an outstanding playoffs in the rearview mirror, the future prospects of the world’s greatest basketball league do not look great.  We now have to watch for players to sign contracts.  But these contracts will not be with NBA teams, they will be with international squads. Continue reading

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“A Slow Day in Sports”

Kovalchuk inks a 17 year deal..

Jennie Finch is calling it quits..

Contador apologizes to fellow rider Schleck..

These are your main headlines for this lovely Tuesday morning.  Do you even know what sport Kovalchuk plays?  Did you know that Jennie Finch played a sport or is she just a bombshell model?  Do you have any idea who Contador and Schleck are and do you have any idea what the apology is for?

Now sure there is a bit of exaggeration there.  But in a summer jam packed with a thrilling NBA Finals, the French Open/Wimbledon, the World Cup, “The Decision,” and much more, these are some weak headlines.  And headlines that most would not look at twice.  Now me being a sports enthusiast realizes what these headlines are all pertaining to.  But for a normal fan, I would completely understand why you would immediately flip to page 2 and pray there are other things going on that are off interest.

So the first headline.  Yes you read that right.  An athlete signed a 17 year, 102 million dollar contract.  Ilya Kovalchuk is one of the best right wings in the NHL, and the New Jersey Devils just locked him up for the better part of 2 decades.  And no this guy is not a 15-year-old kid. He is 27.  The man will be taking the ice in New Jersey for the next 17 years!  Amare Stoudemire recently signed a 5 year deal with the Knicks for a little less than 100 million.  Kovalchuk is as good, if not a bigger star in his sport, yet he is only making 2 million more than Stoudemire in a contract that stems 12 years longer.  This is why I would much rather play in the NBA.  Plus the NBA is not nearly as violent.

The second main headline deals with probably the most famous softball player in the world, Jennie Finch.  Finch emerged onto the scene with Arizona  around 8 or 9 years ago with her great looks and amazing pitching abilities.  This girl put together a streak of 60 consecutive wins.  What if a pitcher in baseball accomplished that feat?  And then her stardom continued onto Team USA where she has been a mainstay ace on the staff for some time.  Her, Kat Osterman, and Lisa Fernandez have made up the best trifecta of pitchers softball has ever seen.  Team USA enjoyed a lot of success with these ladies leading the way.  Finch will be missed.

Then the last headline pertains to the Tour de France.  The former leader heading into Stage 15 was Andy Schleck.  Schleck had some bike difficulties yesterday and Contador sprinted ahead to take the lead while his opponent was down.  Many saw this as a sign of bad sportsmanship.  Contador tried to save face today by apologizing.  Contador is more well-known for his public conflict with cycling legend Lance Armstrong as a pose to his cycling prowess. Well maybe he is in the midst of forming another major conflict with famous cyclist Andy Schleck.  Contador may be better suited to star on the show “Gossip Girl” rather than being a professional cyclist.  He would probably be more well known.

The absolutely gorgeous Jennie Finch, who also modeled, is making headlines today for her expected retirement from competitive softball next month.

Should be interesting to see what happens down the stretch as the 2 compete for racing’s biggest prize.

So there you have it.  The main headlines pertain to an insane hockey contract that lasts longer than most athletes’ careers, a softball pitcher, and a cycling conflict.

Please let an NBA star or MLB star do something big today.  These headlines just aren’t cutting it from an entertainment standpoint.

Stay tuned for the next edition of Sportskraze.

-Kraze