Welcome to The Blog About Nothing. It’s the 21st of October and it’s a grey day here in the Northeast. It’s raining cats and dogs, and the brief respite of summer weather we have received the past few days will finally give way to fall. In the words of House Stark from Game of Thrones: Winter is Coming. I’m not ready, no one is, but it is coming. Prepare y’all. Prepare.
Before I get into the meat and potatoes of this week’s blog, I have to say congratulations to the Cleveland Indians for making it to the World Series. They beat my Toronto Blue Jays in five games and they shut down a potent Jays lineup with their stellar pitching. Manager Terry Francona, did an excellent job and he’s now only four wins away from being a man that brought a title to long suffering Boston, and long suffering Cleveland. He might be a Hall of Fame manager based off of that alone.
In the National League we have the Chicago Cubs holding a three games to two lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Crucial Game 6 is Saturday night and the Dodgers are throwing Clayton Kershaw on the mound. Kershaw has been a beast this off season, and he will have to be one on Saturday night in order to keep his team’s season alive. Honestly? I’m rooting for the Cubs. I think baseball deserves to see the Indians versus the Cubs in the World Series.
Why would you not want to see two long suffering franchises play each other? Two great Midwestern cities facing each other in the World Series just seems like the kind of matchup those neutrals, such as myself, would want to watch. No disrespect to the Dodgers, but I’ve got my fingers crossed for Indians-Cubs and I hope we get it.
Now that I got that out of the way, I would like to say I have a lot of respect this morning for Los Angeles Sparks superstar Candace Parker. On Thursday night, I chose to watch the Alfred E. Smith dinner on CNN. The Smith dinner is supposed to be a light hearted roast for elected officials, and the bigwigs of New York City, and typically in an election year both candidates for President are invited to speak. As you can imagine it was a bit of a shit show, and once it was over I quickly changed the channel to ESPN.
It was there I saw Candace Parker do her best LeBron James impression. I have to keep it real: as much as I love basketball, I rarely watch women’s basketball. I know the big names like Parker, but I’m not a big viewer of the WNBA. I respect the women’s game, but I’d rather watch the high flying athleticism of the men’s game. With that said, what I saw in Game 5 of the WNBA finals between the Minnesota Lynx and the Los Angeles Sparks was electrifying.
Playing in front of a rowdy crowd in Minneapolis, the two teams went back and forth trading basket after basket, and both teams came up with clutch defense down the stretch. Parker was beasting, but she got a lot of help from Nneka Ogwumike with her solid play in the post. Ogwumike came up with some clutch shots late, and the Sparks held the Lynx off for the 77-76 win.
Why I say I have respect for Parker is not for the 28 points she put up in Game 5, or for the fact that in winning Game 5 she won her first WNBA title. No. My respect for her comes after the game and what she said when she was interviewed on court. Clearly overcome with emotion, and with her young daughter on the way down to the court to celebrate with her, the first thing she said when asked how she felt about the win was “This one was for Pat.”
Pat, as in Pat Summitt, who recently passed away due to early onset Alzheimer’s, was her college coach at the University of Tennessee. Pat left a long shadow over college basketball, and Candace was one of the many transformative players that came through her program. Instead of thinking of all she did in the series, or of her teammates, Candace’s first thoughts of were Pat. I couldn’t help but applaud and salute her in that moment. She’s a champion, and she’s unbelievably gracious. I could have nothing but respect for her.
I’m keeping it brief this week, so I’ll leave it here. Sometimes I don’t have it in me to come up with over 1,000 words. I think close to 800 will do this week. Thanks for reading.
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