WHILE WE WERE OUT…

Quite a weekend in the world of sports. A few thoughts on the weekend that was…

WIMBLEDON: You couldn’t ask for better matchups from a television prospective, and having not seen a minute of live action of either finals, I’m not going to pretend like I have original and insightful commentary on two matches that I didn’t watch.

That said, if I ever sat down to watch a tennis match on ESPN Classic, the Federer-Roddick final would be the one I’d watch. A 30 game final set? That’s absolutely preposterous. The fact that both of those guys had any energy whatsoever to even play a 30-game final set is a large testament to the fitness level of both guys.

As for the Williams sisters, I think it’s time that we start talking again about how ridiculously incredible the story of their upbringing actually is. For as much of a nutjob their father was when the girls got started, they’ve become two all-time greats in the sport. That they came out of the junior tennis circuit in Compton, California is utterly amazing.

TIGER WOODS: When a guy as cool as Tiger Woods also decides that he’s going to host his golf tournament over the 4th of July weekend in Washington, D.C, and use it as an opportunity to honor the men and women serving in the military, he inches closer to the world’s coolest athlete. For all the crap that Jim Brown was mumbling about last week, Woods, his tournament, and his foundation do more to help people than Brown probably cares to admit. That Tiger hasn’t soley embraced his black heritage and instead acknowledges his biracial background is a credit to Woods.

As for his golfing… Even though Hunter Mahan went out on Sunday and lit it up, Tiger’s performance on Sunday’s back nine was clinical. More importantly, he went out and closed the deal. Fairways and greens. Well-paced putts. Not a leaky swing to be seen on the last few holes, and an incredibly clutch 20-foot putt for birdie when he absolutely needed it. I think the fact that Tiger hasn’t actually played Turnberry will be a good thing when he arrives in England for the Open Championship next weekend. And if he’s able to control his driver the way he did yesterday, that’s a very good thing.

AIR MCNAIR: One of the more surprising and depressing stories of the weekend. Whenever something like this happens, you always struggle to find a reason why it happened. With Steve McNair, we were pretty sure we had a quarterback that was one of the good guys and the circumstances surrounding his death make us question those thoughts. This is one of thoseĀ  stories that have to find the delicate balance between reporting and trampling on a man, and I feel incredibly sorry for McNair’s widow and his four sons. I think it’s only a matter of time before the rumors of a murder-suicide are confirmed, which could turn McNair’s legacy into a cautionary tale, and take the focus off of his heroics and nobility on the football field.

MICHAEL JACKSON: The aftermath of Jackson’s death has been one of the more bizarre things in quite some time, which is utterly unsurprising when you think of the tormented and strange life that the King of Pop lived. Seeing Joe Jackson’s true colors during the days after Jackson’s death might shed a little light on why Michael was such a peculiar creature.

That said, I just hope the fade of playing his music nonsstop will be coming to an end soon. Not to burst anyone’s bubble, but the world didn’t lose a saint. It lost a man that produced some iconic music, but also paid millions of dollars to settle sexual abuse cases. They might consider making Jackson a case study textbook: How Not to Deal with Success.

JESSICA SIMPSON: Presented with very little comment…

JsimpsonFour years later…

Advantage: GQ Cover.

DICE-K: After being placed on the DL for a shoulder injury, this little tidbit did more than enough to solidfy my issues with Daisuke Matsuzaka.

The most surprising thing was his lack of conditioning, and that he didn’t feel he had to do any of the shoulder strengthening program all Sox pitchers are on. According to a major league source, Matsuzaka appeared convinced that a Japanese shoulder is different from an American shoulder.

I’ve given up my hopes of the gyroball taking over baseball, and decided I’d settle for a Japanese pitcher coming to the big leagues and keeping himself in shape. For $100 million, that shouldn’t be too much to ask.

dicekAlvin, Simon, Theodore, Dice-K

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