Who would have thought that after the NBA All-star weekend ESPN would have hockey and even soccer in its weekend’s top ten plays? Hell, they even had a Bass fisherman’s victory, some mad-man bowler going nuts upon winning the PBA and a gnarly bicycle kick in an Asian foot volleyball match. For diversity, the last weekend of February was filled with great plays from all sports spanning the globe.
Coming in at 8 on the ESPN Weekend’s Top 10 was the Carling Cup victory for Liverpool. This dramatic ending on penalty kicks was well needed for the Liverpool Reds as they haven’t won a League trophy in nearly 6 years. Close to facing relegation last year, Steven Gerrard and his fellow Reds were determined to improve their record and reputation and this victory over Cardiff City was the product of their discipline and hard work. Now, Liverpool sits only 4 points out of the 4th ranked standing. Much is to come within the next several matches for English football.
Further down the line in the Top 10 was 2 Spanish League Plays. The different plays where from 2 different matches but were deemed worthy of the weekend’s # 6 seed. First, it was the Portuguese Prince Cristiano Ronaldo who scored an unbelievable goal with a back heel kick against Rayo Vallecano. How this goal found the net through the apparent blind defense and goaltender was unexplainable, especially when you consider that it was from about 20+ feet out. But this was a Cristiano Ronaldo goal and all sports fans would agree that the greatest sometimes are the luckiest. After the match, the sometimes humbling Ronaldo even told the media that it was not one of the best goals of his career. I certainly agree. Regardless, this play is competing for ESPN’s Best of the Best.
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With all respect to Cristiano’s no look goal, another Spanish League player named Lionel Messi scored his team’s game winning goal on a free kick. Messi, the 24 year old Argentine with 3 consecutive FIFA Player of the Year awards, kicked a tear drop of a shot into the back far corner of the net. The stunning goal was about 25 meters out and came in the 81st minute with the score tied at 1-1. Fortunately, Messi happens to be the best player in the world and proved it again with that kick; saving Josep Guardiola from another loss. A big victory over Atletico Madrid as Barcelona desperately tries to make up the 10 point deficit to Cristiano’s Real Madrid in La Liga standings.
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How about this? Ronaldo’s goal this past weekend but him at a 29 goals scored on the year while Messi’s goal brought him to 28. The funny thing about this close race is that the 3rd highest goal scorer in La Liga is Falcoa with an acceptable 15.
While at work yesterday a couple of co workers and I were discussing sports talk radio, how we hate WGR, and who we enjoy listening to. We all found a common ground when we realized that we all enjoyed listening to Jim Rome. Rome has been in the radio business for a while, starting during his college days and continues today. Rome recently took his talents to CBS where he will host his own show leaving ESPN.
The thing I love about Jim Rome is that he is real. He is not afraid to tell you how it is and will not back down. He has been doing this for years and has many die hard fans but he also has those that hate him, or are more likely jealous of him because he basically made them his bitch. I totally forgot about the interview Rome did with former NFL quarterback Jim Everett. Who? Ya that’s what I said. This interview took place on Rome’s show “Talk2″ in 1994. Rome had previously referred to Everett as “Chris”, after Chris Evert, the female tennis player, suggesting that Everett shied away from getting hit. Enjoy the following.
Since I have never even heard of a Jim Everett in the NFL I obviously had to look up his stats. I was shocked when I read that he was the third overall pick in the 1986 draft. Everett was in the league for twelve years, and that was twelve years to long. He finished his career with a 64-89 career record, and while he did throw for more touchdowns, 203, than interceptions, 175, Everett seemed to be a no namer considering I have no idea that he played in the NFL.
I can only hope that I am half the man on the radio that Jim Rome is, so with that in mind, make sure you check out http://buffalowatercooler.com/live.html for daily shows with Trent of Kenmore and occasional appearances from yours truly. I am going on sometime this week to introduce our site and will be back periodically to talk sports with Trent. Make sure you check it out because we are about to take over the 716.
I was pretty excited to see this matchup. East Aurora versus Tonawanda, or should I say Stan Wier versus Jesse Lalka. I got to the game mid way through the second quarter and the score was like 18-16 EA. The score would be close for the rest of the game. I was really interested in seeing Wier play. Never seen the kid play before, just know that he has been to three different high schools in four years (EA, Nichols, prep school in Indiana, and back to EA). He also committed early to UB and ESPN has him rated pretty high.
I will be honest with you, I was not all that impressed. Wier finished the game with 22 points. No offense to Tonawanda basketball, but it is a B school. It was Lalka and everyone else out there. I expected Wier to score at least 30. Wier does have hops and was able to create his own shot, but like I mentioned earlier it was against Tonawanda. He is a good sized basketball player for western New York but I am anxious to see what he can do at UB. I hope he proves me wrong.
But now to the MVP of the tournament, and it isn’t even over yet, Jesse Lalka. He is not afraid to put it up from everywhere. He is very patient, and lets the game come to him. I think he should have the ball every time in the last two minutes but Tonawanda ran their offense and the ball eventually came to him. Would like to see him box out more as Wier was all over the boards for East Aurora. Lalka went on a run where he hit three or four 3 pointers in a row pulling Tonawanda back in the game, and when it mattered most he made big shots and hit his free throws.
It was a pretty chippy game and I enjoyed every second of it. The fans were getting into it (a mom from Tonawanda got tossed) and some girl yelled at my friends because they were cheering to loud. Hunny, this isn’t CYO basketball. Tonawanda came out on top 49-48. I have been fortunate to see some great high school games so far this season, and I am looking forward to seeing more from Wier and Lalka.
Former Buffalo Sabres tough guy Matthew Barnaby used to be a legend in Buffalo, but now he is a disgrace. Barnaby was accused of causing an estimated $300 in damage after kicking a garage door in an attempt to enter his home where his wife and two children live in May. Reports then came out this morning that Barnaby was driving on 3 wheels, and his form of transportation was not a tricycle.
Matthew Barnaby not looking so hot after being arrested Monday morning
Barnaby was driving his Porsche Cayenne, and was arrested by the Erie County Sheriff’s department after he failed several field sobriety tests and refused a breath test. Barnaby has been a hockey analyst with ESPN since 2008, and I hope now that ESPN fires him, especially after they fired former baseball analyst Harold Reynolds after he hugged a woman and was charged with sexual harassment. Barnaby was dating SportsNation co host Michelle Beadle, but that only lasted 6 months. Michelle would never put up with this childish behavior.
I don’t care if you are a fan of Barnaby but I hope now you will change your mind. This is not how a role model should act, and I hope ESPN fires his ass. Hey Matt, get out of Buffalo because you are a disgrace to the city of Buffalo.