Here in the DC area, there is a tennis tournament every summer. The weather is almost always beastly and only a couple of the major players find the
time to come here to play - and to take the appearance money.
It is absolutely amazing how many times these top players get upset in the first or second round of that tournament and leave town quickly. I'm sure
they have checked to be sure the appearance fee check did not bounce; but as soon as they know that, they seem to be catching a cab to the airport.
Now look at the popularity of tennis as a TV sport and check what revenues its TV rights command. That is where golf could be headed if players can
earn a quick $100K to play in the sponsor golf outing on Tuesday so that it has already been a profitable week even before they take their first
tournament tee shot on Thursday.
The USGA has also been in the news recently. It will follow the lead of other golf governing bodies with regard to the eligibility of transgender
golfers. Frankly, I could care less where transgender golfers play and under what conditions they are going to play golf, but I do have to wonder
about the new USGA ruling/policy. They say "...transgender athletes will be eligible to compete two years after having gender reassignment surgery,
subject to certain proof of gender guidelines." I do not know what "proof of gender guidelines" might be, but I know for absolute certain that I do
not want to be the person who has to determine with certainty that the gender reassignment surgery has been completed. I'm shuddering just thinking
about that task.
After the Cleveland Cavaliers fired Paul Silas last week, that left the NBA with only 4 coaches who have been with the same team for more than 21
months. And one of those long-tenured coaches is Rick Adelman in Sacramento and I wouldn't say that he was a shoo-in to stay there a whole lot longer.
A couple of weeks ago, I wondered aloud here if the Lakers would finish ahead of the Clippers this year. They were 4.5 games ahead of the Clips at the
time; according to my newspaper this morning, they are now ahead by only 1.5 games. The Lakers appear to be in a free-fall and seem to have no chance
of making the playoffs. Amazingly, the Lakers have been in the playoffs every year since 1976 with the exception of one season - in 1994. That will
likely put the Lakers and the Knicks in the NBA draft lottery at the same time this year. Now if you want to hear some conspiracy theories, just let
the ping-pong balls give the overall first pick to either of those teams...
The Mets acquired pitcher, Kazuhisa Ishii, from the Dodgers and so it was not too surprising for the New York Post to talk to the Dodgers' pitching
coach about Ishii. This is pretty standard fare and leads to the usual story about how hard a worker the guy is and how a change of venue will
certainly do him good and all that pabulum. Interestingly, the Dodgers' pitching coach said something that might lead you to believe that he is not
shedding any crocodile tears over this trade. When asked what pitch Ishii had the most trouble with, his answer was "Strikes." A quick check of
Ishii's MLB stats shows that he averages 5.8 walks for every 9 innings pitched. So I guess he does have a problem with "strikes".
Finally, here's a spring training observation from Jim Armstrong in the Denver Post:
"Great news out of the Cardinals' camp. Pitcher-turned-outfielder Rick Ankiel is hitting .333 on his throws to the cutoff man..."
But don't get me wrong, I love sports...
Copyright The Sports Curmudgeon