Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Boozy Memoir #UN: Delightful Umpires and Larry Merchant is Piiissed

Watching sports when you’re drunk can produce two things. The first is nothing, you retain nothing, remember nothing, contribute nothing and wake up feeling sad and shaky needing Pizza Hut to live. The second is you come to some conclusions about what you are watching. Sometimes these conclusions are dumb as shit, sometimes you think they are cool only to be told later that they are dumb as shit. Either way, here are some things I took away from watching sports intoxicated recently.

Sometimes Umpires wear delightful suit jackets.
While watching the Jays game on Friday I noticed the umpire’s jacket. He was rocking an official MLB suit jacket over his chest protector. Holy shit that is a good look for an umpire. I need to go on record right now and say that Major League Baseball has the best dressed officials of any sport. The best part was when a ball got away from either catcher, instead of handing a new ball to the catcher to throw back to the mound, he launched a toss of his own- suave jacket and all. It was like watching Rich Eisen run the 40 yard dash in a suit, only it happened once an inning. It also makes me wonder what it would be like if other officials classed it up a bit as well. NFL refs wearing fedoras and scarves. It would stop us from looking at Ed Hochuli’s hulking mass of man-meat every Sunday. Or what if NBA refs wore those velour track suits that rappers used to wear ion the 2000s? Now were talking.

Floyd Mayweather wins, Larry Merchant cannot contain his rage.
Ortiz did headbutt Mayweather, it was not accidental. His immediate apology and kiss on the check only condemned him further. I think it might have pissed the Pretty Boy off quite a bit as well- judging by the way he knocked him the fuck out a minute later. Floyd did come back to Ortiz and put his hands up while Ortiz began to apologize for the second time. The referee was facing the other way. I think this was a terrible mistake by the referee for one, as Floyd is not new to cheap shots when he gets upset in the ring. For instance during his 2005 bout with the late Arturo Gatti, Floyd scores a standing eight-count blow while Gatti is talking to referee about punches to the back of his head. Fairly similarly this weekend, while the referee talks to someone outside of the ring, Floyd absolutely crushes Ortiz, ending the fight. This was all to the disgust of Larry Merchant who I usually enjoy listening to. He is a grumpy man, and maybe he doesn’t give Floyd credit where credit is deserved occasionally but he clearly hates the way Floyd caries himself and to me it seems that Mayweather has been wanting to give Merchant a piece of his mind for some time. I do think Merchant’s comment, “If I was 50 years younger i’d kick your ass”, was unprofessional. While, on the other hand his comment was fucking amazing. The fearlessness and pure anger before Larry turns and merely laughs with a look like “holy shit, I almost got my face caved in just now- BUT THEN I DIDNT!” The man is a legend. So I guess what I’m trying to say here was that Mayweather vs. Pac-Man is two years too late, but everyone is still going to watch it, and Larry Merchant is a motherfucking boss.
The UFC’s next PPV: Georges St.Pierre vs. The one-armed drummer from Def Lepperd
The UFC is getting complacent.
I know GSP has beaten everyone is his division. I know Anderson Silva has go-go-gadget arms that kill people. I know Brock Lesnar’s insides exploded or something. But, whatever happened to developing matches over time? The exception, of course, is the upcoming Velasquez-Dos Santos fight. But what is the point in having the likes of a Dan Hardy, Jake Ellenburger, and even to an extent Jake Shields fight GSP when the majority of people have only seen them fight once. Whatever happened to building a foundation of contenders. Even if a fighter is of a lesser caliber than the champion let him fight some old guys with big names to get some notoriety around the name before he walks in and gets his face mashed. Build a subsequent division under the champion with contenders- a line of contenders. Rematches are not a bad thing either, especially in the case of a guy like Jake Shields or Jon Fitch (who has deserved a rematch for years). I want to see the Shields fight again, as does everyone else in the world because it is the most human GSP has looked in a long fucking time. Ellenburger beat Shields you say? THAT’S THE PROBLEM. I don’t know who that is. All I know is I’m going to end up watching some new guy get beat up when I really should be watching Jake Shields take on GSP again. Let Ellenburger get another fight or two in so that people know who he is and actually fear that he is a contender. A perfect example of this is what the UFC did with Thiago Alves. He beat the living shit out of an older, yet very recognizable Matt Hughes and then got his shot. 
Anderson Silva’s division is almost worse. I know that Chael Sonnen is suspended but my god man, Yuskin Okami? This was advertised as Anderson defending his last loss. IT WAS A DQ FOR AN ILLEGAL KICK IN 2006. For fucks sake that man did not belong in that octagon for that fight. 
The worst part is, I’m still going to watch. As is everyone else. The UFC is an absolute beast gobbling up any potential competitors. For a long time there were great fights and better match-ups, but I smell complacency. Maybe Dana White is doing his best to put out the best product he can, or maybe he is just laughing at us all on top of a big pile of money- with strippers and a diamond encrusted fountain that shoots out spiced rum. I like to think the ladder. 
Will Beer Pong ever make it?
Having participated in a beer pong tournament this past weekend I have come to the following conclusion. My only remaining shot at being classified a professional athlete is in the quasi-sport of beer pong. There was a recent documentary on Spike TV that showed the trials and tribulations of these athletes during the annual World Series of Beer Pong. I have been ponging it since the 10th grade casually in party situations and more seriously in recent years where I have been playing in such scenarios as a Sunday night when Nic and myself are the only people home and I won pro-line so we bought a two-four and drank them all while playing beer pong. I consider myself good, with potential to be great if I ditched all the school nonsense once and for all and focused on the game. I have often wondered because of the ease at which a game can be played (its practically a drunk person’s soccer) if it would be able to capture an audience outside of the college student demographic and reach mainstream status. I have a dream that one day pong will be a “prime-time get your fucking TiVo ready its coming on” sport. It will probably forever remain a niche game for college students and this guy:

But goddammit can’t a man dream?  


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