Saturday, February 27, 2010

Team USA Has a Slight Edge: Ryan Miller's Heroics are Inexplicable

What we are witnessing is the most renaissance hockey team in U.S. history. The unforeseen heroics and vibrant star power of Team USA continues to engrave a lifetime miracle, greater than a Miracle on Ice. It was 30 years ago, when the U.S. had a talented and artistic core enduring the competitiveness.

All of the sudden the attention and spotlight shines on the Americans, after advancing to the gold-medal game with a 6-1 rout over Finland. Suddenly, the finest win drags our nation into turning its full attention on the Americans amid a quest for gold.

It’s a scene no one imagined, until the U.S. excelled all temptations and accepted the coolest and wildest acknowledgment with a shot of reaching a climax as well as marking a historical trademark in the U.S. Winter Games.

Quite fittingly, none of the wonderful highlights are possible without an inspirational voice or a firm goalie, a profound source that has elevated a sense of pride and faith. Hardly have we given enough praise to Ryan Miller, the critical piece in what forever could go down as the rebirth of America’s generation in a sport American athletes have pursued in when the game became popularized on our soil.

He’s admired dearly in Buffalo where he’s verified as an inspirational superstar, strengthening an unpopular sport here in the States.

It’s fortune, ultimately, to consist of one of the best goalies in the game, within a sporting bout that needs much adrenaline, physicality and aplomb. Over the highly-favored rivals, he has succeeded a flattering agenda by poise and consistency.

If he had a journal and wrote daily on a successive journey in Vancouver, he’d have a massive summary summing up a phenomenal saves total. He has salvaged 103 of 108 shots, crisped to reach another 25 at least. It appears no signs of exhaustion slow down the effortless performance at the net, a position he protects so well making it difficult to score.

The heroics and presence of Miller inspires more than a miracle, but reinforces superb hockey in a nation the athletes dismantled the popularity of a sport originated in Canada. But as it appears, futility is long gone and has uplifted a sense of humanity, rather than pestering thoughts of stigma.

Instead of witnessing a premature ouster, we as American citizens are glancing at the unimaginable and miraculous play of Team USA. As it seems, Miller continues to be the most adorable and outstanding goaltender, a large part to what has resonated in the most emotional and gratifying Winter Games.

He hasn’t underachieved, but dominated at a high on Canadian soil, proving to the world he’s a defensive star, not only in the Winter Games, but also the NHL. He deserves credit for rising into a big-name star with the Buffalo Sabres, and getting the nod to represent his country has the No. 1 goaltender for the United States.

His natural talent has engineered and provided sheer inspiration to teammates, including the doubters still counting out Team USA. He’s the best goalie our country has seen in quite some time, confirming the truth during the NHL 2005-06 season.

It all started with extra hours in the training room, taken on a rigid task by committing to endless preparation upgrading his stamina and flexibility accepting an honorable invite to Vancouver to compete in the world-class games. As the team has depth and balance, having an inexplicable goalie reduces the chances of suffering woes and enhances happiness in all likelihood.

What makes the U.S. relentless threatens all opponents, to whereas he’s prone in shutting out teams with his mastery at defending the nets. Make no mistake he’s the prototype of a passionate athlete willing to accept a steep challenge.

Indeed, he committed and took on a challenging role. There were heavy burdens on his shoulders, but none of it seemed to bother Miller. If there’s a notion that he has been awaiting a cheerful moment, it wasn’t noticed until he excelled greater than any other goaltender, stealing all the spotlight in Canada.

This is about a man in which much is anticipated, despite being less muscular than most goalies. This is about an inspirational maestro, knowing what is at stake and willing to ignite our entire nation. This is about a captain ranking among the top in shutouts, goal-against average and save percentage.

At 29, he could win a gold medal with a win against the Canadians in the gold-medal game Sunday afternoon. Not only is it an advantage for answering to a grueling NHL season, but to advise the league he’s not a fluke and an elite goaltender.

Meanwhile, he had sought this moment, and relishes a golden opportunity in which he may earn golden memorabilia.

He wants to leave Vancouver with Olympic gold. As long as he’s the starting goalie, anything is possible.

So apparently, it’s Miller Time.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Oh Yeah, Canada Finds Its Mojo: It's Far From Over

What a difference one game makes. It seemed the Canadians were burnt as French toast and almost disappointed a homeland in which tears engulfed the psyche of a sensitive nation, its expectations submerged. All the possible dreams of conquering a gold medal unraveled, and it was difficult to trust in Team Canada.

Bad vibes were felt immensely, when a disastrous breakdown scourged the Canadians and prevented fulfillment last Sunday. From a global standpoint, hockey is taught, introduced, and played on several continents, becoming a sporting origin within most cultural backgrounds. The U.S. men’s hockey team confirmed it’s a universal game, after beating the Canadians in a 5-3 win at the Winter Games. That prompted vulgar language in the stands, angering bitter fans waving the maple leaf flags to serenade “(Beep) USA! (Beep) USA!"

The ominous settings have disappeared, and suddenly Team Canada finds an adrenaline rush and menacingly returns to contention, following a must-needed win against Russia. It turned into a one-sided contest, embarrassing and thrashing the Russians in a game that anticipated an epic clash between two tough-driven, hard-fighting rivals.

Two nemesis were unsympathetic and expected to push and shove. There, however, were bullies on each side exploiting hard and physical contact. More impressively, Canada awakened on the brink of elimination and dismissed a pitiful defeat to Team USA, whose dramatic and profound conquests continues to appease a patriotic nation awaiting a miracle, perhaps, the biggest since 1980.

What we’re witnessing is an amazing sequel of Disney movies, such as the Mighty Ducks capitalizing amid a brilliant run or a Miracle on Ice engraving a lifetime memory. But as of now, the Canadians are still alive, advancing to the medal-round mired in uncertainty, realizing Canada still has a chance at redemption in a possible rematch against the U.S. It was visualized after trampling the Russians in a surprising 7-3 win, stunning its fans, the U.S., and Russia.

Their mojo resulted in an 8-2 pounding on Tuesday to the undermined Germany, before encountering a dynamic test against Russia. No one envisioned a sudden revival after losing to the United States. No one predicted that the Canadians would even be in the picture of reaping Olympic gold. Well, they’re back in the picture with a victory over its toughest opponent and archenemies. It’s much too early discounting the Canadians, strengthening into a sumptuous force.

Huh? Wait, Canada beat Russia?

Yes, sir. Yes, madam.

The Canadians are back. They’re in good position to claim a gold medal, to instill happiness and humanity, ending all failures of coming up short in the medal count. Routing the Russians in a convincing romp is enough to catch our attention so that we reconsider them before throwing them on the backburner. This amends critical ideas and reforms a logical purpose in which Canadians were considered as the primary contenders, even though it may sound like a cliché.

The resurgent of the Canadians proves tremendous star power and superior depth. In large part, Russia’s goalie Evgeni Nabokov was absent and failed defending the net, yielding a total of four scored-shots in the first period. By the second, he had surrendered six shots, which turned into an ugly rout.

The biggest star was Canada’s Ryan Getzlaf, who finished with two assists and had a goal. Even Corey Perry contributed and eased a shot into Russia’s net. Almost surprisingly, Sidney Crosby finished the night scoreless, but there really wasn’t a need for his contributions when the Canadians played with much balance and aplomb.

Let’s say it was a total team effort.

If there’s a shutdown defense, keep in mind, not much is needed offensively. To simplify things, Roberto Luongo, who took over for Martin Brodeur after the U.S. loss, shut down the Russians, making 25 saves and remaining focus in a position that seemed to be their weakest link. On greater imports, Alexander Ovechkin was quiet and unsuccessful in posing as a villain. In a dull onslaught, the Canadians were more aggressive and prepared for a mental and physical attack, demolishing the Russians early.

The competition featured two of the NHL stars, in which a one-sided contest wasn’t anticipated between Sid the Kid vs. Alexander the Great. But indeed, the Canadians responded when desperate times called on the biggest stage. Most of all, they prevailed in a pivotal game.

Favored to own the podium in hockey was Canada, understanding the ramifications of securing tradition and cultural beliefs within a country where hockey is admired and appreciated. Given its brilliant win, the Canadians repossess top regards in a sport originated in Canada.

Suddenly, this Canadian sport seems rational.

It’s not over yet.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Meaning Of These Games: U.S. Makes Us Proud With Unforeseen Glory

I must confess gushing over excitement the U.S. Olympic stars engendered is captivating and honorable. The well-deserving praise is seen globally, bracing the particular U.S. stars that represented our nation with dignity, zealous of competing on such a prestigious platform. Wasn’t Canada supposed to own the podium, vowing to win the most gold?

What a surprise seeing the Americans conquer the unforeseen in a monumental sequence of conquests, becoming a replica on a day the U.S. amassed a total of six medals. In the homeland of Canada, the United States were on a mission and imprinted a wonderful journey tormenting the Canadians.

It’s frustrating and disappointing after spending $117 million the last five years to upgrade the medal count, having pride in trusting that owning the world-class games was logic. Therefore, the neighbors residing on the south of the border aren’t a mirage, but an incredible theme of the 2010 Winter Games.

In the last two weeks, the United States have defied logic, pulverizing the Canadians and rising on the podium to accept medals amid a ceremony when the well-deserving flag and country’s national anthem is heard. From gold, to silver, to bronze, the Americans have inherited superb applause pleasing a sporting nation with true passion of embracing the charming images of sports.

Badly needed were American icons, to strengthen the notion of the Winter Games. And because of the sterling performance of Lindsey Vonn, Shaun White, Bode Miller, Apolo Ohno, Shani Davis, Evan Lysacek, and the men’s hockey team’s latest version of the Miracle on Ice, the U.S. has popularized and uplifted an ailing every-four-year event.

For the longest, no one cared of the Winter Games, but was more interested in counting down to the Summer Games, where in recent memory the Americans are more solid. The masses were careless and clueless of our cultures talent, unsure whether we could entice a massive audience. Since our athletes consist of a strong-range of star power, we are fascinated with their performance earning the nod over all countries competing.

Our nation has excelled all temptations, taking control with its impressive adrenaline as the world persists in watching the world’s greatest athletes compete. There hasn’t been much to celebrate since the 1932 Games at Lake Placid, when the U.S. garnered the most medals at the Winter Games. But as sports continue to expand globally, the U.S. retains the leverage. The games are coming to a closure gradually, in which a close race with Germany is probably the only country putting fear in the hearts of average Americans.

The U.S. had us fooled. Believe in America after proving to an entire continent of its invaluable sporting icons, winning seven gold medals, nine silver, 10 bronze, and 26 totaled. With five days remaining the U.S. is on pace to surmount pass a total of 34 medals, a record the U.S. endured at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. Of late, the Olympics stirred up a minor controversy, regarding the medal count. For a long time, the games have expressed political discussions, a conspiracy tattering the meaning of the Olympics.

To all the prejudice and skeptics out to destroy the games, the U.S. constituted an inspirational tale uplifting from the darken crisis of letdowns and hideous stains that left faulty memories. The entire nation is proud of our athletes, capping supremacy and regenerating a magnificent brand name in foreign territory. The average citizen will remember the games as the most triumphant moment in American history.

Of all the star power, the U.S. made us proud erasing all the poor images. We never cared or spent ample time watching the Winter Games, simply for the failures athletes had illustrated in the prior games, especially in the Turin Games where the stars were limited and reduced. There were a multitude of fallen stars and icons we tried believing in, groomed to compete at such a high level, but their lackluster performance and disastrous meltdowns inhibited gratification.

Television ratings are at an all-time high, intrigued to watch the never-before-seen tricks of White, who defied gravity by performing ridiculous flips on a snowboard. Around the nation, children are accustomed to witnessing him polish in the Winter X Games, an action-packed scene catching children’s curiosity and influencing them to attempt a daring challenge on snowboards. Praise the U.S. Olympic Committee, too. All eyes were set on these games, in which investing $58 million over four years was worth it.

By producing large profit, it turns out, the committee earns more bang for its buck whenever athletes inherits a medal. Even the channel, NBC is earning huge bang for its buck, turning on more viewers by virtue of the Americans’ triumph. The millions of athletes were underestimated, based on the prior history. Sure enough, everyone had forgotten that Vonn is the greatest U.S. women’s Alpine skier, everyone had ignored Seth Wescott in the snowboard cross event, and everyone had doubt in the U.S. hockey team.

Maybe the cohesive team was ignored because of its unpopularity within the sport. Given that the sport originated in Canada, most athletes are groomed to dominate in a cultural sport that symbolizes the brand of the country. The Canadians had the nod, but the U.S. exemplified that the sport is played and viewed from a global standpoint and stunned the Canadians in a 5-3 win. But there was no one more impressive than Lysacek, the U.S. men’s figuring skater. He performed with much artistry, balance and elegance, to unexpectedly obtain the unforeseen purging afterthoughts that has undermined men’s figuring skating. He won gold, slicing over Russia’s former gold-medalist Evgeni Plushenko.

While the Canadians point fingers, the Russian’s stare in despair, the American’s are celebrating and proud of capturing medals. Getting beat at home, where the British Columbia residences were coveted of Team Canada protecting its homeland, the Canadians still have a shot at redemption after surviving in a play-in game Tuesday night against Germany. However, they may find themselves eliminated with a loss against Russia tonight. Whether we are interested or not, most will probably watch to await the newborn rivalry of Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin. Otherwise there’s nothing to see.

Oh, I almost forgot. There’s much to see.

We’re still watching the U.S. make our nation proud. Believing in red, white, and blue seems surreal, but it’s happening before our very eyes.

Monday, February 22, 2010

U.S. Exemplifies a Global Miracle: Conquering Gold Appears Logic

As a nation, we witnessed a potential miracle in the making of a phenomenal championship for a country that isn’t groomed or cultivated in a strong upbringing of accomplishing triumph in an enigmatic sport. Thirty years ago, Team USA pulled off the unforeseen by conquering the spotlight and reverence in a foreign sport, which originated and formed its true identity in Canada.

However, times are different in terms of how sports are introduced, mastered and studied across the world. In contrast, stunning the Winter Games to be called a “Miracle on Ice,” the U.S. is more than a miracle after fabricating a notion that sports are played globally and taught all over the world in an age when sports touches our hearts and uplifts character. Realizing no team is intimidated or afraid of smothering a country’s heritage or cultural backgrounds, a true Canadian rationalized that Team USA isn’t underdogs, miracle makers, or even challenging the odds.

Finally, breaking through as a cohesive team, the Americans believe the improbable is possible if they continue to excel and perform on the ice. Pride is moving throughout the nation, proud of the long-awaited sequel following a breathtaking surprise and shocked the somber crowd in the stands at the Canadian Hockey Place. Welcome to the Vancouver Games, a winter activity that won’t be remembered for too many gratifying moments.

Instead, unless mentioning, Canada was anxious to share their cultural concepts with a captivating Canadian team, led by Sidney Crosby, the magnificent NHL star, who rose to the occasion at the Winter Games. By virtue, he was a talented superstar and emerged as the symbol of the Canadians reaching a pinnacle unlike any other. Our athletes are obligated to expose good humor, by discarding stigma and transcending beyond the neighbors north of the border.

That being said, Team USA is lethal and could potentially win a gold medal. And it’s nice to know a brilliant hockey story is suddenly being written, upsetting a bitter crowd, which inspired their likings within the homeland. For the angry Canadians who were bitter of an upsetting defeat, serenaded “(Beep) USA!” (Beep) USA!” That came immediately following a sensational victory, stunning the convincing population in Vancouver.

And that came immediately after a Sunday night 5-3 win, demoralizing a country’s creation, a sport in which they brilliantly maintained leverage. But in reality, hockey is viewed as a global sport. Several nations are starting to match Canada’s intensity and physicality, including countries like Sweden or Russia. All children from varieties of ethic backgrounds are pursuing an unpopular sport in the States.

The beginning of a conquest is within conversations, another deed to summarize the tremendous success the U.S. has had obtaining medals. This isn’t a fluke, but instead we’re in for what could be a nifty finish amid a real quest to gold. With the quarterfinals Wednesday, the hockey fanatics are glaring at Ryan Miller, the high-profile NHL superstar.

Having a consistent and flexible goalie is pivotal, in which he’s a stud with robot essentials stopping almost every puck flying to the net. He has been sterling, performing as if he’s accustomed to representing his native country in his first Olympic games. Forty-five seconds remained when cheers erupted in the stands, excited over return to precedence and rendered their craziness in a satisfying celebration since Miracle on Ice.

They exemplified the state of the sport. They rendered the most star power, and tenacity as a team. They beat, arguably, the outstanding and favorable team competing for the noble prize. It’s uncommon to see the Americans overtake the Canadians among a game most are savvy and poised. It’s not everyday the U.S. stuns the nation with a miracle. Trust me, it seems like it’s more than a miracle. There’s a team more proficient and solid for its depth of self-confident and talented Olympians. Team USA was belittled for its lackluster performances, doubted for its failures and unfavorable for its insufficient aptitude.

On this particular night, Team Canada’s Martin Brodeur, who is the greatest goalie in the game, was outrivaled by Miller of the United States. For much of the tournament, Miller has made credible saves stopping 45 shots. He’s an inspiration to Team USA, an authentic athlete forcing teammates to stay calm and his presence is an essential feature as goalie. Hardly, were the Americans a simple task, but in fact, the toughest rival for Canada. Most think the U.S. would face off against either Russia or Sweden evidence telling us Team USA isn’t as inferior. This time, there’s a feverish feel as America citizens are delirious and believe our hockey team can pull it off.

Hockey is one sport where it’s tricky to pick a winner. But this is the time we can admit the Americans appear the best. Around the world competition is fierce and has expanded, and other teams besides Canada is dominating hockey. During Wayne Gretzky’s reign, of course, he was the Great One and the most popular hockey star as the Canadians glanced at glory, even if their team were fallen stars rather than uplifting stars.

The U.S. briefly unhinged the souls of Canada with a crisis that crippled prominence, while the States found global form by upsetting the Canadians in the World Cup, in 1996. For revenge, you might say, they were granted redemption when Canada won its first gold medal in 50 years at the Olympic finals in Salt Lake City.

Seems this time for the U.S. to seize control of the rivalry.

Seems the U.S. is more than a miracle tale.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

U.S. Olympic Stars Popularizes Games, but Chad Hedrick Hits Downside

It’s unfortunate a long-awaited dream was shattered, hindering him from a potential shot at fame and glory.

When an Olympian trains years for the unforeseen, a heartbreaker is unimagined for a real icon expected to leave Vancouver with a medal and exhilarated of the exertion needed to reach a pinnacle in the world-class games.

On a day that tested strength and courage, U.S. speedskater exits empty handed and distraught of faltering during a felicitous moment.

He is, Chad Hedrick, who reacted emotionally after a substandard finish in the men’s long-track speedskating 1,500 meter.

Before he began his chase for gold, he cried in the locker room, and while lacing up his skates he shed tears, too.

In what was his final Winter Games appearance, Hedrick, 32, knew it was the last crack at capturing happiness. But his age revealed when he started off sluggish, finding it laborious to accelerate as quickly as the younger legs.

There wasn’t a point during the race that he obtained agility or a groove to venture in a challenging race, which has became steeper over the last four years.

As we’ve trusted in Team USA, now known as virtuous icons of the Winter Games, once again most of our athletes have popularized the games.

Our country has witnessed the most intense and competitive games in a long time, pleased to see the U.S. claim the most medals overall, including a leading total in gold medals.

It’s sad a triumphant storybook wasn’t a pleasant ending for Hedrick in a week much exaltation uplifted new heights and established persistent memories.

In an unhappy ending, he couldn’t position himself in the company of star skier Lindsey Vonn, famous snowboarder Shaun White, figure skater Evan Lysacek, and teammates Shani Davis and Apolo Ohno.

All of whom emerged as American heroes, invoking effulgence and remembered as the renewal of the Winter Games, making the world believe they’re the most outstanding competitors globally.

The heartbreaking meltdown on the frozen surface, certainly, saddened Hedrick of finishing short to mount worthiness and earn recognition among U.S. icons.

His preparation and obligation to a sport, defined an athlete with tremendous promise and dedication to a sport that he truly unveiled enthusiasm. That wasn’t the scenario for Vonn, when she told reporters about her bruised shin and was uncertain if she’d compete, while viewed as a Cover Girl model.

Her photos appeared in the latest Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue, grasping our attention when she was expected to win all five of her Alpine events, but raced brilliantly in the super-combined claiming a gold medal.

Yesterday, she managed to win bronze in the Super G, losing almost a half-second to lose out on gold. Then, the unforeseen win of men’s figure skating came about when the unexpected Evan Lysacek claimed Olympic gold to upset Russia.

White defied gravity with his innovation of never-before-seen tricks, developing a style the snowboarders across the country couldn’t challenge.

Davis crossed the finish line, to conquer gold in the 1000-meter forcing the stands to erupt, and become the second most decorated U.S. man in Olympic speed skating. His teammate Ohno, a lucky speed skater who skated by two Korean skaters, Lee Ho-Suk and Sung Si-Bak after a collision caused a crash on the final turn allowing Ohno to take silver in the men’s 1500-meter race becoming the first most decorated U.S. athlete as well.

On this day, Ohno finished as the most decorated U.S. Winter Olympian in history and Davis added a silver medal Saturday evening, but Hedrick was a high-profile athlete expected to dazzle.

It was supposed to be an uphill battle between him and Davis. More surprisingly, Mark Tuitert shocked our nation by claiming the gold medal, the Dutch star no one had in mind until it actually happened.

The surreal sequence is ending considerable on the downside. He saw aspiration languish, but most U.S. athletes saw gladness. He expressed an anguish psyche, but most U.S. athletes expressed laugher and good humor, proud of winning a medal.

The scoreboard read mishap, and the scoreboard wasn’t clear as to whether Hedrick was ranked third in the world in an event demanding much speed, stamina and equilibrium.

Nearly, he wasn’t the skater we once knew, a four-time Olympic medalist. This time, it was Hedrick competing as if it merely was his first Winter Games appearance, more indolent and lethargic than in prior games.

And this time, he wasn’t unbeatable, but vulnerable of faltering at a moment when he controlled his own destiny, aiming to leave the games on gratifying terms.

From his poor performance to what could be his final good bye, Hedrick under duress was shocking, even stunning the U.S. citizens accustomed to the sterling leverage he had whenever skating in front of a convincing audience.

For years, he has been a most-watched skater in his sport, a traditional star in speed skating. Rather awkwardly of late, he inveigled a large population in America to watch his compelling finishes without collapsing.

But considering that he’ll retire, Hedrick doesn’t have what it take to slice and dash through ice, conquering a medal for his ambitious and zest to rapidly race on skates.

As it turned out, fellow American and rival Davis finished second to claim silver, while Hedrick admitted to his failures who may decide to father his 11-month old daughter, Hadley.

Well, it seems now he could depart the game with a gold, silver and bronze medal, all won in the Turin Games. From this point on, he bares his soul and appreciates what he has accomplished as an Olympian.

That’s not bad at all.

Friday, February 19, 2010

If All Else Fails

The Cavaliers now have gotten everything LeBron wants…pretty much. LeBron wanted Amare Stoudemire in the trade deadline. The Cavs were close to getting him, but they got someone who is better and would not want to call for the ball and just play basketball. He’ll be assigned of what he’s asked. That’s Antwan Jamison.

Now let’s go back further. LeBron needed a sidekick. Neither Delonte West or Mo Williams were working out well to his suiting. Ben Wallace was playing like his age. It was just horrible. Wally Sczerbiak was struggling. In the offseason, the Cavs made many changes and acquired Shaquille O’Neal. They also brought in former Harlem Globetrotter, JaMario Moon.

Now LeBron has everything he wants. He has a good lineup and along with that, he has guys stepping up this year. J.J. Hickson has been a powerful contributor at forward and has been in many dunk highlights. Daniel Gibson is looking good, too, along with his streaky shooting from behind the three-point line.

With all this, the Cavs are destined for the NBA Finals. They are destined to be champions. For so many years, the city of Cleveland has suffered pain, annoyance, and frustration. Browns can’t win, Indians can but they suck in the playoffs. And they’re the Cavs. They’ve been playing some good ball since LeBron came and have been to the Finals, but got their butts kicked by San Antonio there. Cleveland has a curse. LeBron is the sports hero of this place. In fact, the messiah. Everyone counts on him for him to win. This may be the year.

But hey, we all don’t know that. In my opinion, I think the Cavs will make it to the Finals. They have to. This is their year. LeBron deserves his first ring. He’s been playing too hard to have this deserved to him. Heck, now you got people hating on him, making all this stupid stuff up about him being Satanic and all that. None of it’s true. People want him to win the Finals.

LeBron has everything. He has a big guy that can easily rebound and everyone afraid to try to fight against him (enter Shaq). They have a guy who’s not selfish, can shoot from three, and can take advantage of his big size (enter Antwan Jamison), and LeBron is the biggest piece to the puzzle.

But, what if nothing is destined for Cleveland. What if they turn out to be a first-round exit? What if they fail in the semifinals? Conference finals? Heck, if they make it to the Finals, what if they lose there? LeBron can’t go through another loss in the NBA Finals. 0-2 with Cleveland there? No, no, it can’t be. But hey, it can happen easily.The Cavs were the number one team last year and they lost to the Magic in the Conference Finals. Look what has happened to other teams like the Mavericks who were a number one team. How about those Pacers in like 2003?

It is possible. All of you have heard those rumors about LeBron going to teams like the Knicks, Nets, Clippers, Heat, etc. in 2010 Free Agency. If all else fails this year, these rumors will be heating up and could eventually turn out to be true. Why? LeBron has been here since 2003. He has brought everything. With all the weapons this season, he has to win the Finals. And if not, it’s over with him in Cleveland in my opinion. The Cavs could give LeBron all the cash, but then some weapons on the Cleveland squad may go away. That can be the problem.

Yes, yes, the Knicks have gone through some problems. But what makes us know that he will even go to the Knicks. He can. The Knicks can pay LeBron all sorts of money and LeBron may accept. Al Harrington might stay, and so can Tracy McGrady. David Lee can stay also, I can see. The Knicks did better than expected this year. They can go beyond that next season if they acquired a player such as LeBron.

I can see the Nets. LeBron has been linked with Jay-Z and with the star rapper owning a part of the Nets franchise, I won’t be surprised seeing a jersey being stitched out “James” on the back with a front side that says “New Jersey.” Represent. With Chris Douglas-Roberts, Brook Lopez, and Devin Harris, it’ll all be good. And they can get LeBron in a trade, too. They can use their first-round draft-pick and maybe a player or two for LeBron. I wouldn’t be surprised if this came out true.

The Clippers can also be an idea. Eric Gordon is a good weapon along with Chris Kaman and others. Steve Blake and Travis Outlaw were recently added to the team. LeBron can be the centerpiece. The Heat was another thing I’ve seen, too. But the Heat was will be more of less chance of landing. Two megastars sharing the ball on the same court? They have to be able to share the ball a lot, share minutes. It’ll all be hectic.

The Knicks, Clippers, and Nets are all good options. But hey, that’s if the Cavs won’t make it to the championship. Who knows what will happen?

But if all else fails, don’t be too surprised of a Knicks, Nets, Clippers, or any other team uniform having a LeBron James jersey ready for him coming the 2010 season.

Tiger Conveys Sorrow, but I'm Not Buying Elusive Message

The truth is, the annoying speculations of Tiger Woods committing horrible transgressions haven’t vanished. It has been the most dreadful months for Woods, the faultless and admirable icon.

But ever since the accident on Thanksgiving night, you know, when he slammed into a fire hydrant and a neighbor's tree and was seen barefooted with lacerations to his lips after emerging from the damaged SUV, Tiger’s privacy and life has never been the same.

Sadly, I’m afraid it won’t ever be the same. Among some people, his credibility is ruined as some of his corporate sponsors bailed out, and lastly, some refused to accept an apology two months later.

Waiting months later to apologize and speak to the public of his heinous transgressions is very baffling and overwhelming. If someone is caught of wrongdoing and deceit, of course, the option is hiding from peers and irritable fans who believed he was a considerable role model, a caring father to his two children, a supportive husband, and a mentor running an educational center for children.

It’s absurd he had to wait so long before speaking to the public and showing remorse. It’s a shame he had affairs, when we wanted to believe Tiger was the cleanest athlete on the planet as well as the greatest.

As it turns out, the media and spectators were wrong, humbled to witness a wondrous athlete inherit green jackets at the Masters, and outlast good-friend and rival Rocco Mediate at the U.S. Open two years ago while suffering with an ailing knee to somehow pull off the improbable.

At least for now, those remarkable memories are in the back of our minds, erased and overshadowed by his impaired image. Woods is allowed to apologize for disappointing us and his fanbase. After all, he forced us to have critical remarks, regarding a troubled legacy and a mental sickness none of us once knew about.

So when he stared into a TV camera and revealed to millions, watching on television of his foolish mistakes that may have jeopardized an astounding career, yet again his explanation meant nothing.

Once again, he never provided enough specifics, leaving critics suspicious of a speech that was an absolute waste. He wasted his time, he wasted our time, and was better off just staying away, seeking mental help for his sexual addiction and secret love affairs.

For those purchasing his products, you should be laughing, ridiculing, and scolding Tiger of a nonsensical conference. Though, he was contrite repeatedly blaming himself in a message he delivered.

“I am deeply sorry for the irresponsible and selfish behavior I engaged in,” he said. “I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated. What I did was unacceptable, and I am the only person to blame."

“I know I have bitterly disappointed all of you. You have made me question who I am and how I could have done the things that I did. I am embarrassed that I have put you in this position. For all I have done, I am so sorry. I have a lot to atone for.”

I couldn’t quite keep count as to how many times he said sorry.

Personally, no one should feel sorry for an athlete who continued to commit the same transgression, not once or twice, but repeatedly. Tired of all the weary debates, on whether he’ll return to the golf course some time this year, if he does, it will create an unnecessary media circus.

The PGA can’t afford such obnoxious nonsense, when it involves the greatest athlete in the sport responsible for the resurgence of an inferior game that most aren’t excited about if Tiger is absent.

His presence alone lures in more viewers and popularizes golf as if the game is the most-watched ever. But without him, the attendance dropped, viewers snatched their remotes and flipped the channel unconcerned about the ailing sport.

Today, however, all the attention turned immediately to Tiger, finally uncovering that his alleged affairs were truthful accusations. I dare say, it’s hard to believe whether he’s sincere or honest, when he stood at the podium and delivered a 13 ½ -minute statement to the public.

The problem is, the damn statement is late, even though he had good sense to convey the truth. But it’s funny that he needed two months, and it’s still not enough specifics on what really triggered the horrific crash near his gated community home. I wonder if he’s still holding secrets, on what really transpired on the night of the accident. I wonder if there was domestic violence involved, which may have provoked the wreck. Oh well, maybe it’s none of my business, right?

Even though he provided a statement, he still needs 18 holes to repossess popularity and lessen the pain still piercing the hearts of a loyal fan base that had tremendous respect before learning of his poor judgment. Observing his pain, remorse and sadness, he seems to have changed instantly. Unlike before, he appears unselfish by becoming a better individual as he tries fixing his marriage, finally vowing to maintain fidelity, and greater plans for educating children.

He repeatedly apologized to the world, repeatedly apologized to his wife, Elin, who didn’t attend the conference. He also emphasized the importance of being a better human being, as well as a family man that we all believed in. Feeling guilty of letting down his family, he said constantly that he was sorry for putting his family in a troubling crisis.

Hurt of the media adding fabrications to the friction, he made it clear that he never used HGH or that his accident never contributed to domestic disputes. Seems one of his corporate sponsors are willing to give him another chance, after dropping him of malicious and irresponsible behavior. Accenture, a sponsor of the PGA’s Match Play Championship this weekend, is en route of endorsing him once again.

What most wanted to hear was a specific return date, but he has no timetable and could return any time. If so, a more suitable date is this weekend. If he returns for the Masters, where he has won six of his 14 major titles, Augusta National will formulate an immense media circus and drill Tiger with questions on his personal life outside the golf course.

“I do plan to return to golf someday. I just don’t know when that will be,” he said. “I don’t rule out that it will be this year. When I do return, I need to make my behavior more respectful of the game.”

He’s aiming to revisit his childhood religion, Buddhism, then maybe he could pursue a stronger and positive life, before he surpasses Jack Nicklaus of 18 majors on record.

“People probably don’t realize it, but I was raised a Buddhist, and I actively practiced my faith from childhood until I drifted away from it in recent years,” Tiger said. “Buddhism teaches that a craving for things outside ourselves causes an unhappy and pointless search for security. It teaches me to stop following every impulse and to learn restraint. Obviously I lost track of what I was taught.”

Hopefully, Tiger's scandal vanishes, though he never unleashed enough specifics.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Truth Is, Lindsey Vonn Is a Golden Olympic Tale

If there was one noticeable thing about the British Columbia, it was Lindsey Vonn aptly renaming the site of the competition Vonncouver.

We’ve been welcomed to witness the Golden Girl, relight romance at the Winter Games after battling adversity and hapless memories during the course of her Olympic career.

But now, she embraces the delight of becoming the greatest U.S. women skier of all-time.

From a bad back, bloody mouth to bruised shin, Vonn has nursed injuries throughout the world’s greatest games. After of all the negatives and misfortune, she rebounded at the 2010 Winter Games, posing a bigger threat in the downhill competition than her appealing photos in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.

Any sporting tale is bittersweet, but whenever it contains a female skier who is compared to Michael Phelps, everyone stops to listen. More than just sexuality or beauty features, Vonn is a gold medalist.

With the exception of weather delays, to her advantage, she was given a few days to heal a troubled shin that almost forced her to miss the games.

Though she was doubted and perceived as a drama queen, Vonn silenced critics who believed she was overhyped.

On Wednesday, she prevailed and won a gold medal for the States, appeasing our patriotic nation with an appealing victory in the Olympic women’s downhill.

After an exhilarating run downhill, she shared the overjoyed moment with relatives and friends, proud to erase all the horrific scares, bumps, and bruises in the Turin Games.

When she competed four years ago, her maiden name was Lindsey Kildow.

Back then she had a scary fall resulting in what appeared to be a serious injury. She had to be airlifted out of the snow.

Amazingly, she suffered no serious setbacks.

Two days later, she was back skiing and finished eighth in the Olympic downhill.

So it should really be no surprise that she overcame a shaky shin injury to win a Gold two nights ago. Her ability to withstand pain and overcome such hurdles should be far more impressive than her Gold Medal. It is now a strong possibility that she could win two more medals in over the next few days.

She’s on pace to conquer an astounding ride, proving she might simply be the best, an unreal athlete prevailing in the world’s most prestigious games. She finished merely in 1 minute, 44.19 seconds, defeating teammate Julia Mancuso.

So does that mean she’s the Golden Girl?

Absolutely! Minus the upcoming events, she was the most-watched American star, the blossoming star everyone anticipates to take the most gold medals. Quite interestingly, she’s the Phelps of Winter.

In these games, the shin she injured while preparing in Austria last month, hasn’t affected her performance. She spent ample time getting therapy, and lucked out due to the postponement of awful weather.

Four training runs were cancelled, and the downhill run was pushed back to a later date, giving her plenty of time to heal and recover in time.

However, Vonn balanced herself and rose without any trouble to win huge for the U.S., captivating spectators in the games with her incredible influence all over our country. She is the figure admired around the world anchoring all American skiers, along with her positive attitude to inspire kids of the next generation.

Either way, she’s the Golden Girl.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Sidney Crosby Might Be the Finest Symbol of Canada

Of all the sporting events taking place in the Winter Games, none are greater and more exhilarating than Team Canada.

In an atmosphere where hockey hails and is predominately recognized within a culture that created an interesting sport on ice, there’s nothing more content than witnessing Team Canada potentially win a gold medal on its home soil. The true Canadians originated a game that has extended to higher level, played globally and admired from all parts of the world.

Such as Team USA, a cohesive team believing they could stun Canada on its home surface, on a platform truly pulling for the Canadians to sustain incremental triumph. In a nation where fans appear as hungry as the athletes, a savior and a true Canadian generates regards akin to a probable mission of Team USA. Their world-class athlete happens to be Sidney Crosby, the famous NHL star. Those following the National Hockey League are familiar with his inexplicable athleticism, contributing to the Pittsburgh Penguins' Stanley Cup title last year.

But on this occasion, he has a chance to guide his home country to an Olympic gold medal, standing as the premier Olympian in the country where Wayne Gretzky created a stellar legacy, where the Maple-leaf flags are waved proudly, and where the national anthem is famous around the world. What is considered the most enthralling Olympic event in decades, the masses turned it into the most-watched sporting activity, thrilled to witness proud reverence.

If Canada advances to the gold-medal rounds, millions living in the British Columbia or any parts of the country will hope they could attain the superior prize at home.

Over the years, Canada managed merely a lone gold medal in 58 years and are now seeking to improve and toss a hapless drought behind them. The country is pulling for the admirable Crosby, the 22-year-old hockey sensation, and depends on him to produce at the highest level. There’s an understanding that his grace and poise in representing his native country is an advantage. He’s a wonderful specimen, a difficult breed to find in a complex sport that requires mastery.

At such a young age, he has met an agenda by winning a title and received awards. It seems he’s more than Sid the Kid, a keen superstar with optimism and finesse. He’s the exalted icon the populace has waited to witness and hopefully invoke a glorious moment.

Mens Hockey - Vancouver 2010
The magnitude of Canada hockey signifies much about a culture that treasures all angles of the sport, in which inheriting a medal only symbolizes humor and personality. Crosby is ranked in the column of Gretzky and Mario Lemieux by replicating similar styles. Where he has ensured a career in the states, his presence is acute for rejuvenating a defaced sport.

As we know in the States, hockey is uninteresting and unpopular to those inclined to football and basketball or even an impaired game called baseball. It’s entirely a beloved game in Canada, and starting off with a 8-0 shutout win over Norway on Tuesday is a sign of hope, inching closer to the gold-medal rounds.

Unlike most young stars, he’s willing to accept a challenge, a task testing wills and the state of mind. He’s definitely a team leader and an inspirational leader, looking to bring back long-awaited delight. In front of a delirious Canadian crowd, Crosby generated cheers as one of the noble icons. From all parts of the world, he’s idolized for the spectacular performances forcing spectators to drop their jaws and shut their eyes in disbelief.

Ice Hockey - Day 5 - Canada v Norway
It seems he’s one gifted star, appreciated by many after returning home pursuing prestige and to win Olympic gold. It seems fans and coaching staff vowed without even hesitating that he’s the “face of Canadian hockey.” During his prime and years served in the NHL, Steve Yzerman, the executive director, knows a great and prosperous star when he stares at one, referring to him as the face of Team Canada.

I couldn’t agree with Yzerman more. No one is awry describing Crosby as the greatest hockey player to compete on the Canadian team, or even wrong when acknowledging him as the face of the Vancouver Games. Ever since he was drafted at No. 1 by the Penguins, he ignited a large fan base at the Igloo in downtown Pittsburgh and drove the team to a championship win. There’s a potential dynasty abounding in the NHL, but in the Winter Games, a possible moment is looming for Team Canada.

After watching an unflappable and tough-driven Crosby dominate in his Olympic debut, he routinely stuck with his regular style, setting up goals to pulverize Norway. With his vision to locate his surroundings and teammates, Crosby saw Jarmone Iginla in the slot and fired it directly to him as he slapped it into the net for a goal. Following his assist, he amassed another one when he and Rick Nash designed a perfect shot as Iginla scored. No wonder why he excelled in his early years, mastering a Stanley Cup, an MVP trophy, and an NHL scoring title.

It’s good to know the Canadians are favorites to conquer greatness at the Winter Games. Thrilled to have top-notch goalies with much respect is every team’s wish. But as it seems, Team Canada commands top regards in the goalie department, having Martin Brodeur and Roberto Luongo, two NHL stars who are really popular in their native country.

The fans waved Canada flags, embracing what is a wondrous moment in sports. Among competition, Canada, Sweden, and Russia are the deepest teams built to cause destruction, but the Canadians are fortunate to have Crosby. After all, he’s the best hockey star on the planet. And there are no second thoughts, realizing he might be a savior if Canada pulls off the unthinkable.

It’s the biggest tournament in years and decades, along with a Canadian team in which some calls the finest in a long time, coached by the master of coaching Mike Babcock, who’s deeply honored. For now, the Miracle on Ice theme is irrelevant. Thirty years ago, Team USA shocked the Winter Games and people across the world, but even if America is boundless, they are overshadowed by Crosby and Canada.

Think of it as a Canadian sport.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Needed Big Man

When big men Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla were out for the season with injuries, the Portland Trailblazers were needed with a big man in the paint besides power forward LaMarcus Aldridge. Now just recently, the Blazers just made a deal to ship off point guard Steve Blake and forward Travis Outlaw to the Los Angeles Clippers for center Marcus Camby.

I really think this is a great trade for Portland. For the Clippers, it’s okay for them. The Clippers, I believe, were trying free up some cap space. Now they can use their two guards in Baron Davis and Steve Blake now. And with Travis Outlaw, he may be the starting small forward but I think he’ll be the backup for Rasual Butler most probably.

As for Portland, they can be powerful in the paint now. Marcus Camby has been an asset in the boards with the Clippers all season. He has been averaging twelve rebunds per game and can also score a bit, too, with about eight points per game. Camby will move from power forward with the Clippers to a center with Blazers, going in front of Juwan Howard. He and Aldridge will be the big men on the floor and the Blazers were in much need of one.

Now they finally have one. And with Brandon Roy coming back soon, the Blazers can be dominant in these 30 games remaining. It was a pretty beneficial trade for both side, mostly favoring Portland, though. We’ll see how it works out for both teams now.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Avoid Beer and Bartenders: However, It's Miller (and Redemption) Time

Frankly, this wasn’t a moment of immortality or elation, but a redemption story for an embattled U.S. skier Bode Miller. He arrives later, perhaps, than when he was supposed to breakthrough as the world's greatest skier, enduring much of the attention with his pure supremacy as advertised.

Instead, in what quickly became misery, Miller failed to secure a medal at the Turin Games, strung out on alcohol beverages.

Considering that he was fond of partying at nearly all the local bars in Turin, he never had a focal point of recovering to reach incremental aspiration in the crucial games.

It was, however, a huge disappointment refusing to take pride of the exalted honors as an Olympian.

It was, however, a disgrace becoming an official embarrassment to the talented U.S. ski team, with enough mastery to travel home elated of winning the ultimate prize.

To me, the ultimate prize isn’t silver or bronze, but gold, a noble prize all Olympians dream about.

It seems, finally, Miller has mellowed into a responsible and perceptive U.S. star. Reaching an understanding on what an appearance in the Winter Games is about, he isn’t enabling an infamous intoxication to affect his performance level, but implements insight of what it takes to be considered an elite athlete at the Winter Games.

Had he not realized the significance of avoiding bartenders and beer to disencumber disadvantages, Miller wouldn’t be facing good fortune, but probably would have self-destructed in mire seconds. Guess it’s fine to admit he’s back striving for redemption and answering to critics whom believed he was a bigger fool and partier mocked of frivolity.

Where he earned his biggest reward and exaltation, Miller is a different athlete with a much serious attitude. Suddenly, he’s more than an apathetic athlete out there to have a good time, while partying and suffering headaches the next morning caused severe hangovers. There was no resemblance of the famous failures that burned his reputation four years ago, erecting disastrous shame and was an insult to America pride.

The optimist once again believes in retaliation, excited of his positive repercussions when he ended a horrid drought finishing empty of a medal. So when he broke a personal streak that has hunted him the last four years, Miller took bronze in the Olympic downhill Monday, while Didier Defago of Switzerland won gold and stopped the bleeding of a two-decade drought.

That’s tremendous felicity for the Swiss, but the greater tale is Miller rebounding of all the lapses taunting a colorful career in downhill skiing.

From the overacting of spending long nights in the bars to additional preparation, he relinquished all weaknesses and devoted more ample time in reaching a quest. Sometimes it takes disappointing outings, returning to regular form, and skiing at a premium, in which a wake up call at Turin confirmed the values of competing in the world’s greatest games.

And that’s what it took for Miller to realize he was washing away a dream, as years are numbered.

As he continues aging, winning a gold medal (or any for that matter) is a priceless opportunity. The vibes of him competing at a high level, presumably, for the first time in an every-four-year event is uplifting and precious, after battling with adversity for foolish judgment while spending leisure time away from the snowy mountains.

But at Whistler Mountain, among the beautiful and refreshing sites of the British Columbia where the rain has fallen immensely, Miller was impressive and put a smile on faces.

Among those disgruntled supporters, he disappointed them, saddened them as most disbelieved and disapproved of his tawdry drinking habits. Four years ago, no one shook off obnoxious remarks when he said during an interview it’s not easy “to ski when you’re wasted.” That led to a sincere apology, after he spoke to United States Ski and Snowboard Association President and CEO Bill Marolt.

At that point, it provoked further controversy when team donors and corporate sponsors phoned the USSA with fuming calls regarding the everlasting chaos. Ridiculed for such an absurd explanation following his failures at Turin, he was blamed for the awful meltdown and lost all credibility.

As if the sarcastic comment wasn’t inane, he had mistaken it for a joke while most were filled with anger. Later on, the populace treated the insensitive responses with strong bitterness.

Of course, his derelict morals weren’t only a hassle to skiing in general, but the representation he brought when he arrived to Turin. Often, his outspokenness created trouble, or when calling drug rules too strict of “a joke”, a wicked attitude that never settled too well with citizens.

Under much tension to redeem himself of arrogance and rudeness, Miller skiing under the influence diminished long ago. All of which we live in a forgiven country, perhaps, unlike some countries in the world. In what might be the final quest of Miller’s skiing career, he could depart the Winter Games on top and erase all the nonsense.

Although much of Miller’s childish mind games are unimportant during the wonderful scenes of the Olympics, he represents America and might conquer hope for a country long awaiting greatness. The results are that he’s older and well-experienced, attentive of capturing gold, and unselfish of citizens eager to glance at pride.

How convenient when he used to be uncaring of winning and bringing joy to the states. That goes to show you, things change within four years.

It certainly has for Bode.

Let’s witness the similarities of the 2002 Winter Games at Salt Lake City, where he won two silver medals before turning allegedly into an alcoholic, succumbing an athletic sequence and had a zest relaxing in bars sipping on liquor to suffocate his performance level.

The news headlines centered around the disobedient Miller, a ruckus stealing front page news. Consider that he faltered to win a medal at the ’07 and ’09 World Championships, shambles that almost forced him to deliberate as to whether he’d retire or compete in what could be his final run in the Olympics.

And suddenly, he’s redeeming a shabby reputation, and perished all the criticism after having the best performance during his Olympian regime.

If he was under the influence, he isn’t now.

All Eyes on Apolo Ohno for Decorating the Winter Games

We’ve seen the finest and most laidback speed skater become one of the most popular world-class athletes. For Apolo Anton Ohno, he’s the magnet of the Winter Games, catching our attention as a short-track skater.

However, this nonchalant, stylish bandanna-wearing athlete is a humble-minded sporting icon. The patriotic masses of America are cheering on Ohno, enduring and believing he’ll excel and secure Olympic medals.

He’s proclaimed as the gracious and gnarly 27-year old veteran, a predominant hero of the U.S.Olympics.

When he won a silver medal in the 1,500 meters after taking advantage of two South Koreans late gaffes to cost them a potential sweep on Saturday night, he justified incremental stature.

After literally suffocating years ago at the Winter Games, winning the sixth medal of his career in the last winter Olympics solidified Ohno as one of the most decorated athletes of U.S. winter athletes.

To be considered a world-class athlete and not just an entertainer, Ohno had to renew optimism in a cultural standpoint that mandated perseverance and resiliency.

Ohno is on pace to capture potentially three medals in Vancouver, with two individual races and a relay event remaining.

Thank goodness the sensational perfectionist on skates and ice found his swagger. Among all things, he has engaged us by putting a smile on the faces of Olympics fans, still living with the tragic death of a 21-year old luger from the Republic of Georgia.

His presence alone reminds us of having a peace-maker within a chaotic workplace, where no one is willful in parting ways.

Four years ago, he battled hamstring and ankle injuries all while winning two medals at the Turin Games. But at the Vancouver Games, he’s pursuing at least a couple gold medals.

Maybe he will be renamed the Golden One...

As an amateur athlete, Ohno arouse supporters and merit applause, heavily adored for the talented style he performs while speed skating.

If someone is lucky to come close in replicating his style, he sticks to the basic techniques. His endurance and athleticism erect an uncommon pattern that most short-track speed skaters are luckless in adopting.

Ohno begins a race slowly and tags along in the rear before finally breaking through to restore a convincing lead. The welfare of starring on Dance With The Stars may have polished his nifty mechanics, benefiting any time he appears on ice.

Or it may have been his devotion during the teenage years, raised by a single father who’s still supportive of his son.

Girls are attracted to sporting figures, but even more so to Ohno. It seems the kid is hip and sexy enough to make them scream and cheer. Ohno has a certain sex appeal to fans that often overshadow his achievements.

Although he’s aging and competes against younger competitors, he’s in the prime of his career, well-experienced and balanced. Had he not eaten healthier or committed to diets, it would be difficult leveling out against youth.

Eight years ago, in Salt Lake City, he blossomed as an Olympian, but now he is one of the greatest American icons.

As long as he enriches for the betterment and continues to challenge the mind and body both mentally and physically, Ohno will always be known as America’s icon, America’s hero.

Right now, though, he’s the prominent Olympian representing red, white and blue.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


A lot of stuff have been going on in All-Star weekend. Rookies beat the Sophomores, Krypto-Nate wins his third Slam Dunk contest, Steve Nash performs well to win the Skills challenge, Durant holds his title in H.O.R.S.E., and Paul Pierce stole it away in the three-point shootout. Now the Eastern Conference All-Star will be facing the Western All-Stars. It looks to be good. But another thing happened too.

A trade was rumored and it was finally made. Caron Butler wasn't fitting well with the Wizards' play, or in other words: Flip Saunders' style. And Josh Howard wasn't fitting well with the Mavericks' play, or in other words: Rick Carlisle's style. Both were going to get shipped off, and they both knew. It's business. Just flat-out business, nothing else.

And the trade happened. The Mavericks shipped off Josh Howard and Drew Gooden along with reserves, Quinton Ross and James Singleton, to Washington for Caron Butler, Brendan Haywood, and DeShawn Stevenson.

The Mavericks decided not to trade Erick Dampier, who is the only shot-blocking center left who can still contribute. That's where Brendan Haywood came into the mix. Josh Howard wasn't doing well lately with Dallas anyways, and he kept struggling. The Wizards were in large talks in other players like Andre Iguodala, Amare Stoudemire, and most notably: Tracy McGrady.

But this looks good for the Mavs. I believe they got the better end of the deal. With these guys, they can contend better in the West now, but not fully.

"It [the trade] makes us significantly better," Mark Cuban said.

Butler will most probably fall at shooting guard with Jason Terry backing him up. Shawn Marion will be at small forward. DeShawn Stevenson will be used as a pretty good backup player . Haywood will most probably start in front of Dampier at Center with Nowitzki at power forward.

"Caron is an established professional and an All-Star with the ability to score from anywhere on the floor," said Donnie Nelson, the Mavericks' president of basketball operations. "Brendan will solidify our center position with athleticism, shot-blocking and defense. DeShawn has also shown that he can be a talented asset to this team."

Washington also could've brought in Rodrigue Beaubois, but Cuban told the media that he is "untouchable."

"We're all disappointed in how our season has gone. We need some freshness and we're getting proven players who will help us, and it gives us some flexibility down the road," Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld said. "We want to remain competitive and maybe this group can provide a spark. The group had gotten stale, and we needed a change."

With this trade, Antwan Jamison will no longer be in trade talks, in my opinion. They have been heating down as the days have gone by, and now after this, it should be dead. With Gilbert Arenas gone, the Wizards need Jamison. With their additions, Josh Howard will start at SF with Ross backing him up. Singleton will be a backup power forward to Jamison while Gooden will be the starting center. Randy Foye and Mike Miller will stay at the starting guards.

Butler will be heavily missed by Washington. He says he will play with the same desire like he did with the Wizards.

"Different teams go through different situations. The Mavs went through it in the '90s, the Wizards are going through some issues right now," Cuban said. "Sometimes giving guys a fresh home I think re-energizes them, and will work the other way, too. I think Josh will find himself re-energized with the Wizards."

With All-Star break coming to an end, the Mavericks look to play real tough in the closing games of the 2009-10 NBA Season.

"We haven't been playing well, that's for sure. Sometimes people might think that moving someone or making a trade can help," Jason Kidd said before the trade was announced. "We have a big week coming out of the All-Star break ... 30 games left, it's a sprint now, not a marathon. I think we're going to be ready for that."

Kidd tells ESPN that he is excited about the trade.

"It gives us a chance to win," Kidd said. "When you're talking about Caron, Haywood and Deshawn Stevenson, you have three quality players. The West is strong. This hopefully gives us a chance to compete against [the Lakers] and Denver."

It's a good trade for both teams. I look forward to see what happens when All-Star break closes and it's back to NBA action.

Apolo Ohno Is No Fluke, No Joke: His Turnaround Reveals Feel-Good Story

In any other context, Apolo Anton Ohno is a rare talent.

He’s the perfectionist in a sport that comes with much durability and technique, a matchless attribute separating him from a typical speed skater.

As if he’s an ordinary specimen sustaining joy once again at the Winter Games, Ohno adds to a remarkable legacy and has met the agenda in an every four-year event.

Two days removed from the horrific death of luger Nodar Kumaritashvili, a reckless tragedy that pierced our hearts and slaughtered the principle of the 2010 Winter Games, Ohno endures a rapturous scene as the most decorated speed skater in ages.

Incredibly, he’s the most enthralling winner, capturing a medal in the uttermost compelling event. It’s a soothing turn-of-events in the games thus far, refreshing memories of what the Winter Games truly represents akin to the stylish and talented skating managed efficiently by the six-time medalist.

Yet, he gazes at Olympic gold with history repeating itself, meaning he’s America’s true hero.

This is especially true if Lindsey Vonn’s shin isn’t healed in time for her Alpine events, or if America’s hockey team is unable to pull off the 2010 version of Miracle on Ice, or if Lindsey Jacobellus clumsily falls before advancing past the finish line in her snowboarding events.

In British Columbia, the forecast calls for light rain, but instead snow is badly needed in order to contribute in the skiing events. Quite simply, it’s outlandish this time of year to witness rain in the forecast, particularly with Vancouver hosting the Games.

Lack of cold weather is an issue, but fortunately the warmer climate isn’t a problem regarding short-track speed skating.

Short Track Speed Skating
Among patriotic citizens, most of them were hopefully cheering on Ohno. He’s a world-class athlete and engenders humankind. Consider it all a way for us to become obsessed with cultural standpoints of speed skating and the creative techniques of a sport that mandates endurance and perseverance, a primary agenda for strength in the lower body and cardio-system.

For the average American, we should remember that most U.S. athletes were introduced and groomed at an early age, which works in favor of Ohno, who caught our attention by holding up all five of the gold-tipped fingers on his left hand.

Seconds later, he tucked the American flag in his arm, proud and ecstatic of adding to his historic collection a sixth medal (silver) in the 1,500-meter final Saturday night.

The top-notch star of short-track embraced the moment, smiling happily, and bear-hugged and lifted his U.S. teammate J.R. Celski, the 19-year old skater who finished third, winning the bronze.

“I just feel so blessed to be here, healthy, competing,” Ohno said. “It feels like home soil to me. We just have so much support in the crowd.”

What it means to win is indescribable, and Ohno will be remembered as one of the greatest short-track skaters of all-time.

The latest win is historic and ties Bonnie Blair for most medals won by a U.S. Winter Olympian.

Had he won a gold medal, Ohno would’ve been overjoyed, but he’s humbled finishing as runner-up.

Normally, Olympians are distraught and unsatisfied whenever they finish as runner-up, but he’s a gracious athlete entertaining partial applause.

Not as hyped as prolific U.S. snowboarder Shaun White or embattled skier Bode Miller, Ohno is a matchless talent on the ice, scorching on the slippery and frozen surface by following his usual routine.

First he paces himself and very seldom starts off with the lead, but takes over near the final lap to cap an inexplicable win.

Frankly, he’s the spotlight and the front-page headline, while the rest wait until their events are underway. There’s much uncertainty as to whether they’ll perform near their potential.

As of now, we are witnessing a one-of-a-kind sequence started by a dominant short-track speed skater from the suburbs of Seattle, where he adapted to life and was raised by a single father, growing up motherless. Ever since stepping into four-wheel skates, unlike the rollerblades kids tend to strap on nowadays, Ohno has been fond of skating and drew deep interest as a child.

As years progressed, he advanced greatly and now possesses a medal in every color, passing Eric Heiden as the most decorated American male at the Winter Games.

Setting a mark for most track medals since the wild-and-wooly sport joined the Olympic Games in 1992 is huge, representing the U.S. where some of the deepest athletes are pinpointed.

With three more events left at the Vancouver Games (two individual races and the relay), Ohno could be on pace to prevail with an abundance of wins and pass Blair.

Favored to cap all events, he ruined wishes of Canadian sensation Charles Hamelin in the semifinals of his first race with an undaunted move inside. Because he’s fearless, Ohno had no regrets or sensitivity as bitter, red-clad fans crowded the Pacific Coliseum, angry about the results.

“I’ve come prepared, more than I’ve ever prepared for anything in my life,” Ohno said. “I’m in a very, very good place. Obviously, I know I have six medals now and I have no regrets about this entire Olympic Games experience. This is going to stay with me for the rest of my life.”

If you didn't know, he made his Olympic debut 18 years ago. Some are convinced he was quicker and more vibrant then, but there’s not much of a difference.

In fact, he’s more experienced and well-balanced, including an attentive mentally.

Oh yes, he’s in his prime. Those are additives that could be favorable in the upcoming events.

He won his first medal in Salt Lake City where he embodied a newfound sport and eminence. In the 1,000m race at those Games, he crashed on the final turn as did several other skaters. Australia’s Steven Bradbury lasted and won the gold medal to finalize the biggest upset. If there was something positive about the run, Ohno finished second to win silver.

“Pretty intense,” Ohno said. “This is what this sport is all about.”

After all, his is a wonderful story, perhaps the most wonderful story in these Winter Games. Happily, the story is about Ohno, a premier short-track speed skater taking the much-needed limelight.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Oh No, Canada: Luge Tragedy Casts Gloom on Winter Games

Because the Olympics are most famous, at a time the greatest athletes unite and compete globally in the beautiful scenery of British Columbia, experiencing a freak accident that suddenly turned into a devastating tragedy wasn’t anticipated.

There have been too many crashes in one week during practice runs, but organizers ignored the possibility of a fatality, unprepared for a crestfallen disaster to shift people's moods and consciousness.

Before the lighting of the cauldron in the opening ceremonies on Friday night, the entire world mourned the sudden death of Nodar Kumaritashvili, a 21-year old luger from the former Soviet republic of Georgia.

There’s nothing better than attempting to capture a quest that athletes wish for at a young age. But, unfortunately, suffering from a fast-track accident cut his life short. Around the world, tears dropped and candles were ignited, sadden by the shocking news.

Welcome to the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, where it's still hard to imagine a death on opening day. The assumptions of what took place in the last 24 hours brings on alarming perceptions in the aftermath of an outlandish calamity, a wicked crash that presumably could have been prevented?

Ready to face the world’s greatest Olympians, a young athlete immediately died after traveling at a ridiculous speed in Curve 15, losing control on a 270-degree turn and crashing in the final curve, all while traveling at nearly 90 mph and flying over the wall, slamming into an unprotected steel pole.

By the time the rescue staff intended to Kumaritashvili, trying to revive him trackside by pumping his chest and performing mouth-to-mouth, he was pronounced dead.

Were there enough signs that the track wasn’t safe for the sport suddenly known as a deathbed? Could this have been addressed, before it became a disheartening episode?

Yes. For much of the week leading up to Friday night’s spectacle, plenty of evidence uncovered that the track was too dangerous and vulnerable to a fatal crash.

Well, it’s a bit too late, when a life has been taken away. But it’s a valuable lesson and the International luge officials are moving on promptly, regretful of the agonizing current events.

Earlier this week, ignoring the ugly crash on the same track was a mistake, and irresponsible on the organizers and officials. There was a Romanian athlete unconscious for a short moment after a bitter crash.

Being unsure of the track has caused problematic crashes that remains unclear, but whatever is triggering a large amount of collisions is a damn shame.

When a sport is comprised of tracks and steel poles, speed standard regulations must be taken into accountability to hinder crashes as much as possible.

So what are the plans to rectify the issue?

Officials have made progress by building a 12-foot-high wooden wall to cover the steel beams. Sad thing is, a death had to happen for them to realize how the track wasn’t properly secured for the sport.

Before practice resumed, workers shaped the edges of the ice at the last curve. For months, though, organizers have raised concern about the course, what is verified as the Course of Horror.

Shame on the organizers and officials for not detecting the problem sooner. Instead, all those overseeing the events lagged and failed in deliberating on whether it was harmless and protected from any danger.

Seventy-three crashes resulted during practice runs. Oh, well, no one cared.

They were apathetic when a racer conveyed that the possibility of crashing was immense. Oh, well, no one offered concern in reducing the riskiness.

No one had the intentions of figuring out or fixing the track, when Australian luger Hannah Campbell-Pegg was seen terrified and cried for help. Isn’t that enough to tell lugers to BEWARE OF DANGER, KEEP OUT OF REACH OF LUGERS?

That’s a sensible sign the organizers may have considered before an Olympic star died on a defective course. It doesn’t take long to realize the sport is threatening lives.

Of late, plenty of luge athletes are leery to test out the track, petrified and stunned in the aftermath.

Sadly, Canada is uttering OH NO CANADA. The refinement of the Winter Games is suddenly gloomy, and just as very little snow continues to fall, the rainy skies are indications of agony.

Whether Canada is proud of hosting the 2010 Winter Games, revealing their cultural aspects with touching spectacles, athletes and spectators are not going to dismiss the excruciating memories of a luger suffering more than a brutal injury, but a senseless death that was avoidable if organizers and officials never mishandled the troubles.

On their home soil, Canadians try to dispel the awful tragedy, ready to compete and stockpile gold medals for the first time at home.

In fairness, we cannot help but to keep the death of Kumaritashvili in our minds, compassionate and alarmed of the overwhelming anticlimax.

During the opening ceremony inside the B.C. Place, Kumaritashvili was paid a tribute in a moment of silence and the P.A announcer announced that the ceremony was being dedicated to Kumaritashvili.

Out of respect, the Olympics owed it to a fallen athlete, who traveled to Canada chasing Olympic gold.

It’s a shame the committees and organizers paid no mind to a death track. In what is an awful prelude to the greatest sporting event in the world, athletes from across the world will compete with heavy hearts, after tears dripped from their hurtful faces sitting at the ceremony.

For a bit of advice, maybe they should have read Campbell-Pegg's lips loud and clear.

“I think they are pushing it a little too much. To what extent are we just little lemmings that they just throw down a track and we’re crash-test dummies?” She said. “I mean, this is our lives.”

She’s right. This is their lives.

Yet, it has cost someone their life.

There were enough safety warnings but Jacques Rogge, president of the IOC, wasn’t concerned and issued a statement on the tragedy at a news conference numbed with the stunning development.

“This is a very sad day. The IOC is in deep mourning,” he said. “Kumaritashvili lost his life pursuing his passion. I have no words to say what we feel. It clearly casts a shadow over these games.”

Certainly, anytime someone leaves earth.

And still he’s in denial and embarrassed of the recent turmoil, yet to acknowledge the issue.

“I’m sorry, this is a time of sorrow,” he said.

Really, I felt it was a suitable time to address an ongoing issue.

“It’s not the time to ask for reasons,” he said. “That time will come.”

How about telling us now, Jacques? Guess the course passed inspection after thoroughly investigating the cause of the crashes. Expected earlier today was men’s training, as well as four runs of the men’s competition that gets under way later.

It’s also expected to take place at the women’s starting ramp, where the speed is slower and should be easier to navigate after Luge officials postponed training to tweak the Whistler Sliding Center track.

The International Luge Federation and Vancouver Olympic officials said Friday night the investigation revealed that the crashes were triggered by human error and that there weren’t evidence of track defects.

That’s hard to believe, when a number of accidents have taken place on the same course.

My question ... is it really safe?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Danica-Mania is Full-Tilt Underway Before Race Even Begins

This Saturday’s Nationwide race at Daytona can expect high ratings with lots of interested parties because that is where Indy Racing star Danica Patrick will make her official racing debut. Last week she finished sixth in the ARCA race at Daytona, the first time I have ever watched an entire ARCA race on television from start to finish.

Patrick did well in that race and finished sixth. This week will be much more of challenge especially considering she’ll be racing against Kyle Busch, Tony Stewart, and her boss, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

She doesn’t have any lofty expectations of winning the race, but will utilize the chance to race against Stewart and Earnhardt Jr, who have both taken her under their wing with advice.

Her Nationwide practice times jumped from the first session where she ran at 26th to the final session where she clocked in fifth fastest. Many of the teams were using the final session in qualifying trim making limited simulations, but fast is still fast.

She has a great team behind her and the equipment to do well if she picks things up as fast as she appears to have done.

Still, the difficulties of doing well in her first race are the opinions of many including the Las Vegas sports books. Station Casinos opened her odds to win Saturday’s race as the longest shot at 50 to 1.

Just about every NASCAR driver has a Twitter account and they tweet regularly like their in a contest of some sorts. It is apparent by some tweets that some in the NASCAR circles feel some animosity because of all the hoopla surrounding Patrick and her debut.

Regan Smith tweeted Wednesday during Nationwide practice that ESPN’s coverage of Patrick was a bit much saying, The other 50 plus drivers should have coverage for them ESPN classic.

The hype surrounding Patrick has been huge, but why not? She is a unique individual that crosses all lines by selling sex and Motorsports at the same time. Who else can look as good as she does in her bikini and commercial shoots while driving a car at the level she does?

The detractors who say she hasn’t won anything for all the attention garnered are missing the bigger picture. Sex sells in America and businesses are buying it knowing that her crossover appeal will attract attention to their product just because of the splash she makes.

Television ratings won’t match Sunday’s Daytona 500 which is expected to grab close to 17 million viewers, or a 10.0 rating, but it should be one of the most watched Nationwide races just because of ESPN promoting the race non-stop as Patrick’s NASCAR debut.

I’m hoping she does well and validates all the attention given to her while gaining respect from those on the fence. However fans feel about her, it’s safe to say many will watch just to see what happens next to create their next opinion.

For those on twitter, she is currently asking her 84,000 followers to create a nickname for her. We may have to wait a few races to get a read on her stock car personality. If it turns out to be anything like her time in the IRL with some of her outbursts and confrontations, the suggested names will be interesting.

One thing is for sure that we can all agree on is that we’ll be watching.

If Vonn Misses Out and Nurses Shin, Then No Olympic Panorama

Having seen her on the website, she poses as America’s Top Model instead of America’s star skier. Taking a glance at the Sports Illustrated ’s new swimsuit issue, Lindsey Vonn, the U.S. Olympic skier, isn’t skiing. She’s standing on the side of a mountain, wearing a white bikini and red snow boots.

Of course, our country is more interested in her photos. Wait, whatever happened to her, presumably, attaining Olympic gold medals in a quest at the winter games? She is the famous American icon in which most are anxious to watch her attempt bringing home medals.

But three days ago, Vonn spoke to swarming reporters as if she’s quitting before the Opening Ceremonies brighten the beautiful, clear, and crisped skies of British Columbia. The Winter Games are less than hours away, but after revealing uncertainty whether she is healthy even to ski in the games, it seems her priorities are wrong.

Could it be a felicitous dream, ending tragically for Vonn? If she’s delayed after suffering a deep shin bruise, a 20-year dream is ruined. That is, only if she’s not in good enough health to compete in all five of her events. The gorgeous sweetheart is glanced at as a marketing promoter, not a ski expertise attempting to accumulate gold medals or accolades at the Winter Games.

The precious girl is posing appealingly for the photographers and marketers of Sports Illustrated, losing focus of what’s at stake and any glorious deeds she may sustain. The sexy darling is, perhaps, appearing in photos in a white fur wrapped tight around her chest and trendy pants tight on her bottom. Anticipated across the U.S. to excel in the rainy confines on such a perennial platform as the world’s finest Alpine skier, in all likelihood she’s proficient of winning five gold medals.

As it stands though, fans are perturbed and push the panic button as curiosity of her health woes numb our consciousness, while we are still harping on the photos appearing in a recent magazine issue.

It’s obvious the injury could affect Vonn’s ability, when she informed the media of her incident during a training run last week in Austria. But she remained secretive, refusing to inform the world of a potential heartbreaker.

Here’s her excuse:

“I didn’t want to alarm anybody,” she said on Wednesday, a day supporters, the committee, and even her corporate sponsors stared and heard the shocking revelations.

That’s what no one wanted to hear, regarding a four-year event that isn’t as popular as in recent years. In the yesteryears, the Winter Games captivated our interest. But now, the Summer Games are praised for its competitive nature, but also for the more popular events displayed in which we truly have a zest embracing track and field, basketball, and swimming, thanks in large part to the great 14-time gold medalist Michael Phelps.

So, greatly, the Winter Games need Vonn.

Unlike most women in sports, her athleticism and relentlessness have earned her a U.S. women’s record 31 World Cup victories while dealing with nagging pain. From a sliced tongue to an ailing back, she has experienced the pain and nursed injuries over the years.

What we’re witnessing now is a hellish Winter Games in Vancouver, a beautiful winter site where no one is really sure if there’s enough snow in the forecast, but enough rain to turn the Winter Games into the Soggy Games. Gloomed with a possible letdown, much attention is given to the big names, particularly if an athlete is nagged by severe injuries.

Unfortunately, Vonn is victimized by bad results. Had she not became a premier image of Sports Illustrated photos, Vonn probably wouldn’t had sustained brutal damage. Please understand, most athletes who appear inside—or worse, on the front cover—of Sports Illustrated is vulnerable of becoming jinxed.

Reminder: It still doesn’t mean she’s cursed, folks. Seen as the photo attraction, while everyone waited to see her as a skiing attraction. She is a victim of freak accidents, something uncontrollable and usually occurs when least expected. She’s suddenly experiencing a crestfallen episode, suffering the worse situation at the worse possible time.

It’s bad timing, since she’s chasing Olympic gold. She is chasing five gold medals and wishing to stand on the most prestigious stage. She wanted to be characterized and remembered as one of the finest Olympic stars to prosper in the Alpine events. If she somehow recovers in time, and attains all five gold medals, she’ll be known as one of the greatest skiing stars in U.S. Olympic history, if not the Winter Games.

It’s hard to envision Vonn winning any, when she has been unable to walk as well as unable to practice on skis. Earlier in the week, she had trouble and felt severe pain when she tried putting on a boot at the hotel.

”It’s hard to stay positive, you know,” Vonn said on Wednesday staring at reporters. “A week ago, I was feeling great, I was feeling healthy, I had no problems. And now, I’m sitting here today questioning whether I’ll be even able to ski. So, it’s not where I want to be, by any means. It’s probably the worst place that you can have an injury, because you’re constantly pushing against your boot, and there’s no way around it.”

The state of women’s athletics in America is becoming the epicenter of fashion, failing to acknowledge the competitiveness within the sport. Sometimes, women athletes forget the sport and become heavily concerned with popularity, while endorsed by fashion corporations.

Sadly, Vonn is more noticed if cameras are flashing, but captured fame based on her athleticism in prior years. She endorses the fancy and expensive watch called Rolex. More so, she’s the never Cover Girl. Seems that way, after talking about flaunting her body for an annual magazine swimsuit issue and the website. At least she’s not all over MySpace, I hope.

Another sponsor is Red Bull, the energy drink producing millions in profit. Sadly, we haven’t realized she’s an athlete, a prolific skier expected to participate in her first event called the Super-Combined on Sunday, aiming to win her first gold medal. It’s America, where all the tension and disappointment has deflated the pleasing scene. They traveled from the states to witness an Olympic panorama at Whistler Mountain.

Considering no U.S. Alpine skier has won more than two gold medals, Vonn was capable of reaching improbable glory in a country where premium skiers are groomed efficiently. But now, winning five gold medals seems impossible, when endorsing 10 sponsors and posing for photos seems realistic, simply because it’s stands for good business.

She’s a famous woman athlete, even though she’ll never earn as much perception as men athletes. Nowadays, women are getting equal opportunities at sports, but are still behold from the sexuality viewpoint, not the sports viewpoint.

It’s a redemptive tale, if she’s able to compete. The Turin Olympics wasn’t her best performance. Most of you probably remember when she crashed during the training and rested in the hospital. Oh, I remember.

At this time, it’s worth forgetting. Didn’t she recover? Yes. However, she raced in the downhill event, finishing eighth. Now is a moment for her to vanquish and erase the miserable flashbacks of the heartbreaking struggles.

Bad luck has slapped her hard in the face. Recently, Vonn rebounded quickly after sustaining a bruised wrist and somehow pressed on, when she managed a three-race win streak. That’s not all. She had a bloody accident when her knee bounced directly into her chin, in which her mouth bled after the sudden freak accident.

But somehow, she won the race.

She could be a world-class skier. Vonn has been devoted since she was two, and skied while growing up in Minnesota and Colorado.

We know she takes pride in the sport, but the question is now, can she compete?