Friday, July 30, 2010

On the Miami Heat

I don't blog a lot about basketball. I don't know a great deal about the sport or its players and I really only glance at the headlines as they go past. But I couldn't help sit up and take interest in the recent free agent affair that resulted in both LeBron James and Chris Bosh joining Dwayne Wade in Miami.

My first instinct after hearing about deal is to express loudly and repeatedly how much I now hate the Miami Heat. I just can't stand that whole "let's buy a trophy" mentality. It makes me want them to lose and lose badly and lose a lot. It makes me want the three mega-stars to fall all over each other, to argue, to do more harm than good.

But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the real story is how potentially bad this news is for the NBA overall. Great stories in the NBA have come from great team rivalries based around great players. Think about Michael Jordan and Isaiah Thomas. Larry Bird and Magic Johnson or Kareem Abdul Jabbar. And the current and growing rivalry between Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett. These rivalries are the stuff of legends, the stuff of mega-drama, the stuff that draws in people like me, who wouldn't otherwise spend a lot of time caring about basketball. Great rivalries are what make sports themselves great.

By stuffing these three stars into the Heat lineup, the NBA has lost the potential for at least one great rivalry. Wade and James could have been a rivalry of the same ilk as those above. But instead, we'll see them on the same team, helping rather than challenging each other and probably, winning without a whole lot of challenge from most teams. How boring.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A bit late...

... but here's my review of our Blue Jays experience in Toronto!!

We saw the Jays play Boston on July 9 at the Rogers Center. It was an absolutely beautiful evening in Toronto and the roof was open. Our seats were about 16 rows up on the third base line. We had purchased souvenirs. We had had a fantastic meal at the Irish Embassy Pub earlier in the day and we had visited the Hockey Hall of Fame and we had a beautiful room at the Fairmont Royal York and life was good and nothing could possibly spoil it.

Well... maybe not nothing. It's possible that a 14-3 Red Sox pounding could spoil the nice evening. It was a laugher. Jays pitcher Ricky Romero was off his game and the Jays bats didn't come alive until it was much too late in the game to have an impact. It was so sad that we had traveled all that way for one Jays game and that was the result.

We woke up the next morning and started thinking about heading back to Ottawa. And then, my husband looked at the newspaper. "You know," he said. "The Jays are playing again this afternoon. First pitch is at 1pm. We could see the game and still be back in Ottawa by 10pm." There was a long silence. Twenty minutes later, we were heading back to Rogers Center.

The Jays did much better on Saturday. Brandon Morrow didn't pitch a great game, but the Jays more than made up for it with consistent offensive output. The final score was 9-5 for the home team.

The whole experience, good and bad, just reminded me how much live baseball is an experience in and of itself. You can't replicate the smell or the sounds of the experience at home, even in HD. I can't wait for the next game I get to see!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Blue Jays Update

So next week, John and I will be attending the Blue Jays game against Boston at the Rogers Centre. I ... am... EXCITED!

So, let's have a look at how the Jays are doing leading up to that series...

...
...
Doh.

The Jays are struggling. They've fallen to .500, they are 3-7 in their last ten games, and they are now 9 games back in the AL East. And to top it all off, they gave up ELEVEN runs in the third inning today against the Yankees, only a day after taking the first game of the series in an exciting 11 inning win.

So, I'm the first to admit that the Jays hot start to the season was unlikely to be maintained. The team is just too young, especially in the pitching rotation, to reasonably be expected to content consistently through the long MLB season. But still, I'm disappointed. Every year when the Jays get off to a good start it ignites a tiny glimmer of hope in the back of my mind that this is the year that the Jays will contend.

Allll that being said, I'm still excited for the game next week. There should be a good crowd at the Rogers Centre for this AL East battle, I'm hopeful to see a good pitching performance from one of the Jays' young guns and doubly hopeful to see some big offense, which we all know these Jays are capable of.

Come on JAYS!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Golf Lesson

This coming Monday, I am having my first-ever golf lesson.

I expect to be an incredible flawless golfer by the time the hour-long lesson is over.

That seems reasonable.