College basketball fans at Trinity have good reason to be excited. This season, students will be able to watch a young, exciting and potentially top-tier team up close and personal at their home away from home, the XL Center in downtown Hartford. And no, I am not talking about the Uconn women, although they too are well worth the price of admission.
Last night’s Champions League Group Game between Real Madrid and Ajax ended in farce, as two Madrid players were sent off in the game’s dying embers for time-wasting, despite leading 4-0. Xabi Alonso took seemingly forever to take a free kick, pointlessly stepping up and then back from the ball. Minutes later, the Ajax crowd found out that Sergio Ramos is apparently unable to play without his socks being very specifically adjusted. Both players received their marching orders and as a result, will miss Real Madrid’s next Group Game against French side Auxerre. However, this match is essentially meaningless, as Real Madrid have already qualified for the tournament’s Knockout Stages.
It has now reached the point of utter absurdity. For the first time in 10 years, Derek Jeter is a free agent. Jeter, whose historic career has produced 5 championships, the most hits in Yankees history, and a .314 batting average, has become an iconic player and the face of the most successful franchise in sports.
However, after the worst offensive season of his career and whispers that his age is affecting his range in the field, contract negotiations between Jeter and the Yankees have become complicated and have turned into a war of words through the media. The Yankees, who have reportedly offered Jeter a 3-year deal worth $45 million, believe they are being more than fair for a 36-year-old on the decline, coming off his worst statistical season in which he batted .270 and had an on-base-percentage of .340.
This was the message Wayne Rooney received from balaclava-wearing ‘fans’ (if you can call them that) gathered outside his Cheshire mansion last week after it became clear that the England striker was unwilling to sign a new contract with Manchester United. Rooney cited the club’s lack of ambition as his primary reason for wanting to leave, presumably a reference to the obscene amount of debt the Glazers (the club’s American owners) have loaded onto the club. This opened up the door to negotiations with Manchester United’s mega-rich neighbors and hated rivals, Manchester City. However, in a sensational U-turn, Rooney recently agreed to a 5-year extension, which could earn him up to £200,000 a week if his play meets certain standards. Too bad for all the City fans who got tattoos of Rooney’s face and replica no. 10 shirts.
The English FA’s disciplinary panels are to take new elements into account when deciding the severity of punishment for a red card offense. These new elements include the severity of injury, intent shown by the ‘offender’ and force of the challenge. These changes have come after the horrific and high-profile injuries of Arsenal’s Eduardo Da Silva and Hull’s Craig Fagan – both of whom were on the receiving end of red card challenges and in both instances, the tacklers (Martin Taylor and Danny Guthrie) were given the standard three-match ban. This new law will allow clubs to challenge the rulings and hopefully act as a further deterrent to those Joey Barton types who like to go around kicking people.
Now, it is obvious that the FA’s heart is in the right place, but I think these new rules are flawed. Here’s why.
As i wrote before in my pre-series article, this was more than just a June series. Last night’s 4-3 Red Sox victory over the pathetic Yankees gave the Sox the series sweep and makes them 8-0 against the Yankees this year.
The Lakers thrilling 99-91 overtime victory over Orlando in game 4 of the NBA finals tonight puts a dagger in the hearts of the Magic. The Magic controlled the game throughout and held a 10 point lead into the 3rd quarter on a night where it appeared they would easily win to even the series, but the resiliency of the Lakers pushed the game into overtime and eventually enables them to come out on top.