Friday, April 29, 2011

Already over the 1st round of the NBA Playoffs - Let's keep it moving please

I'm not going to lie.  For me, fatigue is setting in with the 1st round of the NBA Playoffs.  I'm ready to start the Conference Semifinals.  I'm glad that teams such as the Dallas Mavericks, the Atlanta Hawks, and the Los Angeles Lakers decided to finish up tonight so that we can keep it moving in the NBA on the road to the Finals...

Is it just me or was that Atlanta Hawks v Orlando Magic match-up incredibly painful to watch?   I couldn't get into that series AT ALL.  Thank goodness they kept that game off of TNT tonight.  There is no question that Orlando is worse after the big trade.  As a result, any plan to visit the "new" Amway Arena will be postponed yet another year (i.e. at least).  As for the Hawks, I like Jamal Crawford and have enjoyed the way he's matured as a player, but without Coach Woodson, I just can't actively support this team.  I don't feel like they play inspired basketball.  I remember the Joe Johson Craigs list ad.  Needless to say, I'm taking the Chicago Bulls in the next series.

In contrast to the Hawks v Magic series, I never wanted the Dallas Mavericks v Portland Trail Blazers match-up to end, but all good things...  I enjoy watching the Blazers.  I like the play of LaMarcus Aldridge.  I believe in Brandon Roy and want him to succeed.  The games he played AFTER he complained about his playing time showed me that he wanted to EARN his minutes.  I think he apologized for going to the media to vent his emotions.  I'm glad that he learned that his play speaks for itself.

The Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Lakers series should be HOT, but I think the Boston Celtics v Miami Heat will be more exciting.  I remember the Nike Party during NBA All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles this year.  I saw Dirk Nowitzki joking around with Kobe Bryant and flashing him the "L" (i.e. loser symbol).  Sure they shared laughs, but you know the saying ~ "There's truth in humor."  I'm sure that Dirk and the Mavs would like to eliminate the Lakers.  I'm also confident that Phil Jackson would like to leave the Lakers as a WINNER.  I don't question Kobe's heart.  After seeing the way he looked at Pau Gasol, after Gasol had a few "oopsies" in Game 5, I don't want to get on Kobe's bad side.  ****  Seriously.  If looks could kill, the Lakers would be a man down.

As for the eagerly anticipated Celtics v Heat match-up, I really hope that the Celtics manage to "Beat the Heat".  Earlier today I read Jay-Z's Life+Times blog post about Chris Bosh.  I was irritated on various levels after reading the post.  For the sake of completeness, I'll post my comments here.  Here are my comments (forgive the capitalization): "people don't like bosh for a variety of reasons. he actually believes he's at a level that puts him in the same category of wade and james. THIS IS SIMPLY NOT TRUE. bosh's perceived bravado, ineffectivenes, crying, and whining are a few of the reasons why he's the subject of criticism. nobody likes a pompous whiner that's unreliable when it comes to productivity. the heat are wade's team. d wade should get the final shot. bosh should realize that it's an honor JUST for him to be "nominated".

Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to read Jay-Z's post about Bosh yourself, here: http://bit.ly/lkVV8p

That's all I have for now.  Like I said, I'm already starting to feel the fatigue of the 1st round.  In my head, I'm already "on to the next one".

****  Oh, and if you're one of those people that watched the NFL Draft today, I really don't know how you do it...  After I heard Cam Newton went #1 to the Carolina Panthers, I lost interest.


THE WIRK

Thursday, April 28, 2011

For LOVE of the game, not "love" for the player(s) ~ Don't assume anything

Being that I travel, blog, and tweet about people, places, and things related to sports I think I need to make something clear again.  I'm not a groupie.  I don't mess around with athletes or people affiliated with sports.  I have one ex-fiancee who's STILL in the league.  I've been offered the oportunity to increase my numbers, I've politely declined.  Why?  The NBA and professional sports world is a small fraternity.  Yes, it's still more or less still a fraternity.  Once you're in the circle of trust and respected, you see just how small it is.  People talk.  People talk A LOT.  Everyone loves a good story, and there are usually plenty of crazy stories to be told.  I never wanted any of those kinds of stories to be told about me.  I actually have love for the game (i.e. and by game, I mean the actual sport and the entire sports-related experience - fans, food, venue, city, etc.).

I see a lot of athetes.  I know a lot of athletes, coaches, front office, and media people.  When my ex-fiancee asked me out the night he met me, he had to ask for my number a few times before I caved.  I ended up making him a deal.  I'd give him mine, if he gave me his.  We traded.  The next day, he called me twice.  ****  I actually thought he'd never call, since I lived an hour away from him.  And, yes, I'll admit that I was a complete cheeseball and played his voicemails for my friend, Chubs, since he was a huge fan. 

I don't give out my number.  I don't take numbers.  In the world of facebook and twitter, no one talks to anyone anymore anyway.  I see people, when I run into them.  Ijust happen to be everywhere.  When I see people, I snap a picture, say what I want, and keep it moving. 

A couple of nights ago, I was out with a couple of friends and Jared mentioned a blog called "Chasing the Jersey".  I checked it out yesterday.  From what I can tell, Stefanie Williams is younger than me and has a penchant for hockey and baseball players and other activities with those athletes.  (Sorry if that sounds vague, but I need to be lame like that for various reasons.)  I contacted Stefanie before I published this post and feel the need to add this quote from her email, "I'm not completely blind to the many, many downfalls of dating athletes. I simply just document what I've been through, what I've enjoyed and what I've hated."  Fair enough.  She's REAL. 

We all have our thing, so to each their own.  I'm not judging her, but it's not my thing.  I don't know how she feels about the term "groupie", but I know she does not want to be confused with the girls on BallerAlert.com.  I can't say that I blame her.  I read a few of her blog posts, and I did find it entertaining.  ****  Yeah, yeah, yeah.  I didn't really read, but I did skim.  The girl definitely has a flair for comedic writing. 

At any rate, I used to find it funny when people assume that a girl, as into sports as I am, must be a groupie.  People who know me, know that my sports knowledge is top notch and respect me and my passion for the game.   No, I won't be able to convince everyone that I'm not one of "those girls".  Frankly some people will just never understand...

My reputation is important, since it precedes me.  I learned early in life that you lose peoples' respect, it's next to impossible to get it back.  You may not agree with my point of view or opinions, but you will respect them.  If you find me at a game, I'm really there for the game.  I'm just not interested in pursuing any other activities. 

ONE.  That's the number.  If your number is higher, that's fine with me.  That's your business.  I'll listen to and read my friends' stories.  There are a number of women, I can think of, that jumped from player to player (i.e. and even team to team) as a WAG.  That's their thing.  It's just not mine.

A couple of nights ago, my friends were trying to figure out who I should go out with if I was going to date someone in the league again.  The pool of 7', European ball players is shallow.  As we were laughing amongst ourselves playing FMK, they continued to make suggestions.  Terrified, I added another criterion: No D league.  See what I mean?!?  I'm picky... 

I've been looking for a quote for a LONG time now, and wouldn't you know I just found it.  Every now and again, I'm home during the day.  When I'm home, I usually have Oprah on in the background.  One day, Tyler Perry's character, Madea, was on.  Here's a quote that has stuck with me ever since.  I think it's a quote from one of his movies.  Madea says it to Vianne:  "***will get you dinner and a movie, holding out will get you cars and jewels and houses." 

Think about it.

THE WIRK

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

2 thoughts on the Royal Wedding and gingers: The path from William to Delonte West

St. Margaret's Church, Westminster Abbey
Random thoughts about the Royal Wedding and gingers.

1) As I was watching a re-run of The Hills last night (i.e. yes, I'm that bored), I noticed that Lauren Conrad, LC, resembles Kate Middleton.

2) I realize that Prince William is going to be King and that we should all be excited aout the impending nuptials.  However, I'm more interested in when Harry marries.  Now, THAT will be a party!  Harry may not be the future King of England, but he is much better looking than his older brother.  Harry and Boris Becker are really the only two "gingers" who have ever caught my eye.  Blake Griffin?  No, thank you.  It's a slipper slope and next thing you know, you're looking at Delonte West twice...  Scary, right?

To reinforce this lesson and emphasize the way my brain works, I'll repeat the path:  William -->Harry -->Blake Griffin -->Delonte West.

Blake Griffin


THE WIRK

Monday, April 25, 2011

Thunder take a 3-0 lead over the Nuggets ~ My 1st visit to the Pepsi Center

I finally made it to the Pepsi Center for Game 3 of the Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Knicks game (i.e. just kidding!!!).  Actually, it's the Denver Nuggets.  I couldn't resist making the joke. 

I arrived at the Pepsi Center early and decided just to park close to the arena for $15. As I waited with other NBA fans til about 6:45PM to get into the building for an 8PM start, the smell of buttered popcorn wafted outside.  Yes, I was sold.  I bought popcorn the minute I walked in.  A girl has to eat, right?

Sporting my new Nuggets hat (i.e. less than $20 from the team store) I went to my seat.  Everyone in the arena had a light blue Nuggets rally towel waiting for them on his/her seat.  Nice.  I save those towels and use them as kitchen towels.

As I watched the pre-game shoot around and warm-ups, I watched J.R. Smith and his teammates shoot trick shots.  Smith's final shot was a full court heave towards the basket and it went IN.  Ending on a high note, Smith ran into the tunnel to get ready for the game.  ****  Who knew this would foreshadow the outcome of the evening's game?

As the pregame festivities went on, I was reminded that the cartoon, South Park, is set in Colorado by Cartman on the jumbotron.  Too funny!


Nuggets fans are passionate about their team.  They cheered as the Nuggets battled the Thunder, but there were a good number of Thunder fans present at the game.  It was good to see all the Nuggets old school jerseys and T-shirts with "English" on the back.  ****  I met NBA Legend, Alex English, a couple of years ago during the All-Star break, and he was a nice guy.

Whenever I looked at the scoreboard it always seemed as though Kevin Durant and the Thunder were up about 6-8 points.  Whenever I looked towards the court, it seemed like either Russell Westbrook or Kevin Durant was talking to a ref and complaining.  I like Durant and Westbrook, but nobody likes a whiner.  Sorry.  I call it like I see it.  Maybe that's why BOTH Durant and Westbrook were called for technical fouls. 

Regardless, the game was a little chippy and there was a good degree of physicality during the game.  However, physical basketball and a good degree of banging on the court is to be expected ~ especially during the NBA playoffs.

Nuggets fans (i.e. sitting near me in the lower bowl) were convinced the Denver was going to nab Game 3.  Unfortunately, for them, this wasn't the case.  I disagree with the 4 guys in their 20s who were sitting in front of me.  I don't believe that you can blame the Nuggets' defeat on the George Karl's rotation.  I believe that you can attribute the loss to the lack of effectiveness from Al Harrington, Raymond Felton, and anyone else who didn't grab an offensive rebound.

As the Nuggets fought back to close the Thunder lead, the fans at the Pepsi Center were on their feet.  With about 40 seconds left in the game, and the Thunder up about 6-8 points, some Nuggets "unfaithful" started to exit the building.  I find it ironic that the girl behind me (i.e. who looked like she was in her mid-20s) was the one who said, "I don't know why everyone is leaving.  40 seconds is a lot time in the NBA."  THAT is a girl who knows her stuff.

Final thought: The Nuggets fought back and cut the lead to 3 in the final seconds of the game.  The refs should've called the foul against the Thunder, as J.R. Smith took his final 3-point shot in the closing seconds of the game.  A foul is a foul, REGARDLESS of when it occurs during a game.  Nuggets' fans seemed to agree with me, since the "Boos" were very loud and lasted for a few seconds when the game ended.

Smith deserved to shoot 3 free throws.  He was fouled.
The Nuggets had balanced scoring with numerous high scorers with 15 points.  Scott Brooks' Thunder squad is definitely gelling and Serge Ibaka was the player that really stepped up his game for the night.  Durant led the Thunder with 26.  Westbrook contributed 23, and Ibaka added 22. 

Final score 97-94.  The Thunder won.

Great all-around game for the Thunder!  It goes without saying that the Nuggets have their work cut out for them for Game 4, which is tonight at 10:30PM ET.


THE WIRK

My visit to the Downtown Aquarium - Denver, CO ~ It has tigers

I went to Denver for Game 3 of the Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Nuggets game on Saturday.  I had never been to the Pepsi Center before and wanted to check the venue off my list.  As I went to get my rental car ($23 dollars for about 12 hours), the Hertz driver told me about the Downtown Aquarium - Denver, CO.  It was still early, and I had about 3 hours to kill until game time.  The driver mentioned that aquarium had tigers (i.e. yes, you read that correctly ~ TIGERS), so I decided to check it out.

It cost $7 to park in the aquarium parking lot and my ticket was $16 or $17.  ****  I'm too lazy to look for my receipt.

I'm a huge fan of aquariums.  Last December, I checked out the Dallas World Aquarium.  Here's a link to the post:  http://www.thewirk.com/2010/11/dallas-world-aquarium-easy-like-sunday.html

As I walked into the Downtown Aquarium - Denver, I was immediately surprised that the place didn't smell.  Some aquariums have that animal, musty smell and eventually visitors acclimate.  However, the Downtown Aquarium didn't smell like an aquarium.

I'll admit right now that I love fish.  It's one reason why I learned to scuba dive.  Incidentally, my dad hates the fact that I scuba dive and has asked me to stop.  Oh well, we all can't do everything our parents' ask of us.  This aquarium offers you the ability to snorkel/scuba with the fish.  The information is in the image below.


When I visit aquariums I tend to skip the area where there are birds.  I like birds, but I never understood the emphasis on them at aquariums.

Although not the largest aquarium it is very kid friendly.  There is an area where you can pan for "gold" and pet the stingrays, and feed the animals, etc.

My favorite part of the visit had to be the tiger, even though it was sleeping and not too active while I was there.  ****  I believe the aquarium has more than one tiger, but I only saw one during my visit.  Being that I have a cat, I wasn't too surprised that the tiger was taking it easy.  I did catch the tiger yawn and stretch.

I'll include some of my favorite pictures from my visit in this post. 



Potbelly seahorses
This shrimp gets to be 10-12 inches long

I enjoyed my visit to the Downtown Aquarium but didn't have a chance to eat at the restaurant. 

The aquarium is located near the Pepsi Center and Invesco Field, so if you're looking for something to do before a game, definitely check it out!


THE WIRK

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Giants lost to the Braves, but I won with my Panda hat

Friday night I ventured out to AT&T Park for my second visit.  I drove to the Hayward Park Caltrain station and decided to head to the ballpark using public transportation (i.e. rather than fight traffic and pay more to park).  Yes, it's true.  I'm not a fan of public transportation, but when I travel I like to try to figure out the best way to do these adventures and most of the time, public transportation makes more sense.  ****  It cost $3 to park at the Caltrain station and the fare was $4.50 each way.  I can almost guarantee that it'd cost more than $12 to park by the park, so already I was a winner. 

Did you know that you could bring your own alcohol and consume it on the train on the way to the baseball game?  I didn't.  Oh, and if you're underage don't try to get away with it.  The train I was on had police on it to make sure people were of age.  Further, you're not allowed to consume alcohol or have an open container on the return voyage from the ballpark.

It was a short walk to the ballpark from the Caltrain station, and the scalpers I expected were plentiful.  For a rookie buyer this can be intimidating, but if you stick to your guns and know what you want, the scalpers respect it.  I wanted a premium field club ticket and the scalpers didn't have it.  I ended up going to the box office and luckily they had a premium field club ticket for me.

As I entered the park, I went to the concession stand and bought food.  I then went through the tunnel to my seat.  My seat was 3 rows behind home plate (i.e. if you don't count the 3 rows in the Lexus area).  FANTASTIC. 

In between innings, I scooped the $20 Panda hat, that I'd been coveting since my previous visit.  I couldn't have been happier, except that the World Champion San Francisco Giants lost to the Atlanta Braves.  ****  I really don't have a preference between either team, but when I visit a venue I usually root for the "home" team.

By the way, did you know that Lou Seal has his own 2010 World Series bling also?  Check out the picture!


Giants' pitcher, Madison Bumgarner, was relieved of his pitching duties in the 3rd.  Tommy Hanson ended up leading the Braves to victory.  The final score was 4-1.



Jason Heyward cross the plate to add a Braves' run
The lone Giants' run was scored by my favorite Giant, Pablo Sandoval.  So even though, the Giants lost, my evening wasn't a bad experience.  In fact, I can't imagine ever a bad time at the most beautiful ballpark I've ever seen!



THE WIRK

Weekend: Braves v Giants, Thunder v Nuggets, and Denver Aquarium ~ Posts to come

It's been a busy couple of days and now it's Sunday and there are more games on.  As I watch the Celtics work the Knicks on TV, I'm editing my pictures from the Atlanta Braves v San Francisco Giants game.  I'm also going through my trip to the Denver Aquarium yesterday and Game 3 of the Oklahoma City Thunder v Denver Nuggets series.  Yes, I finally made it to the Pepsi Center.

I plan to get these posts out tonight or by tomorrow night, so please check back.  In the mean time, I'm tweeting at TheWirk.

Enjoy!


THE WIRK

Friday, April 22, 2011

There is only one Jet, and it's Kenny Smith ~ Rename Jason Terry

I like the Dallas Mavericks, and I like Jason Terry, but let's make something clear.  There is ONLY one Jet and it's Kenny "the Jet" Smith. 

Met Kenny "the Jet" Smith after Western Conf Finals, 2010
If you ask me, Jason Terry needs a new nickname immediately.  It's disrespectful.  Seriously, what's next?  Are we going to have another "Dr.", "Worm", "Spider", "Microwave", and "Magic", etc.?  I sure hope not!

People (i.e. who think this is no big deal) will argue that it's only a nickname.  However, I'd argue that what we call a person is very important.  Someone's name and nickname help define a person's identity. 

Honestly, if I was Kenny Smith, I'd be upset about the identity theft.


THE WIRK

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The NBA playoffs are underway, and there are still arenas left to hit

NBA fans everywhere are enjoying the 1st round of the playoffs, and I'm more or less grounded this week.  Even though I'm not available to fly, I'm still following the action. Taking a look at the 1st round match-ups (i.e. with an eye out for venues I haven't been to), here are the teams that I will focus on this post-season.
  1. Memphis Grizzlies
  2. Denver Nuggets
  3. New Orleans Hornets
  4. Oklahoma City Thunder
  5. Orlando Magic
**** I'm actually locked and loaded for a Denver Nuggets game, so there really should only be 4 teams on this list.

I won't be able to travel as freely until the 2nd round of the playoffs. Further, as much as I like to root for the underdogs, Memphis Grizzlies and New Orleans Hornets will probably be eliminated in the 1st round.  I guess this means that I'm rooting for the Thunder and the Magic (i.e. which is just fine because I like Kevin Durant and hear great things about the Magic's new arena). It doesn't hurt that I love Disney and Mickey Mouse as well.

Thunder Up! Go Magic!


THE WIRK

10 more MLB stadiums left to see and then my baseball tour is over

Last night I went to my first baseball game of the season.  It was an A's game and my first time at the venue.  With a new season upon us and now that the worst is over, I did a quick look and these are the stadiums I have left to check off.

MLB teams I need to see play at home:
  1. Tampa Bay Rays - Wish they'd get a new venue
  2. Chicago White Sox - Need to find a cheap flight and go 
  3. Kansas City Royals - Plan to hit this one once my friend, Becky, move there
  4. Seattle Mariners - Plan to hit this park in August
  5. Florida Marlins - Might wait until they get a new ballpark
  6. Cincinnati Reds - Haven't seen the Reds play at home, since they played at Riverfront Coliseum
  7. Houston Astros - Plan to hit this one once my friend, Kanak, moves there
  8. Milwaukee Brewers - Might have to make this a combo trip with a weekend in Chicago
  9. Pittsburgh Pirates - Possible road trip
  10. Colorado Rockies - Headed to Denver, but wouldn't you know the team is out of town
With a little planning and some luck scheduling, I'll probably manage five or 6 parks this season.

****  By the way, baseball stadium tours don't count.  I've had this argument with a number of people, and firmly believe, that you have to watch a game at the venue in order for it to "count".


THE WIRK

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Red Sox v A's at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum ~ It's as bad as people say it is

Last night I ventured to Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum (i.e. which opened in 1966) to watch the Boston Red Sox play the Oakland A's.   I went to the venue, specifically to check out a new venue and see what people are talking about when they complain about the venue.  I've never seen the Oakland Raiders play a home game.  With the NFL Lockout, ,proximity of the venue to where I reside, and my desire not to return to the Coliseum any time soon I probably won't be back for a game for quite a few years.  ****With any luck, Oakland will have a new stadium/ballpark by then.  I have my fingers crossed for Cisco Field in San Jose!

I was told I could take BART to the game, but I decided to drive.  $17 later I was in the parking lot.  People were throwing footballs and grilling.  The tailgating looked fun, but I had to get a ticket so I went straight to the box office.   As I walked towards the ticketing windows, I couldn't help but notice that Oracle Arena (i.e. the home of the Golden State Warriors) looked so much newer.  Little did I know that was just the beginning of my surprise... 

Ticket in hand for a seat 10 rows off the field, by the A's dugout, I was ready to walk the concourse and see what the Coliseum had to offer.  As I walked the lap around the concourse I was underwhelmed.  The path is narrow, and I wonder whether 6 adults holding hands could stand the width of the concourse.  This isn't conducive to fans who are trying to navigate the crowds to find their seats, consume concessions, and/or shop.

For baseball there are numerous concession areas that are vacant.  Further the upper deck sections are covered by a tarp.  My guess is that these seats don't sell.  Aesthetically, I think it's a good solution.  I just think it's sad to see Rickey Henderson and Dennis Eckersley's names up top, representing an "old and busted" venue.  Yes, I said it.

I caught the opening pitch after visiting the concession stand to grab my customary order of a hotdog and nachos.  The concessions lady was a happy lady and that was nice, since I was already a bit disappointed that I had made the trip to the game.  ****  Further, I was reminded that I was on the West coast when I saw Red Vines amongst the candy selections

I stopped in the ladies room.  That was a necessity, but a mistake.  I've seen restrooms at rest stop and train stations that are cleaner and more modern.

As the night grew chillier and the lights came on, I began to feel some "charm" for the venue.  Unlike Red Sox manager, Terry Francona, my night at the park didn't end early.  Francona was tossed after arguing with the home plate umpire in the top of the 4th.  Actually, around the time Francona left, I felt like leaving the park, but I stuck it out until the top of the 8th.  ****  I'm not one for leaving games early, but I'd seen enough and wanted to get out of there.

I left with the A's in the lead and a score of 1-0.  I am not familiar with the A's, but I was impressed with the pitching of Brett Anderson.  He ended up pitching a shutout for 8 innings.  I also didn't know that Hideki Matsui is an A, until last night.  In the bottom of the 1st inning, I saw Coco Crisp score.  As I mentioned, I left at the top of the 8th.  As a result of that poor decision, I missed the 4 runs that the A's scored in the bottom of the 8th.  C'est la vie.

I still need to download the pictures I took of the venue and at the game, but my computer can't pull them off my camera right now.  The irony... 

If this venue was an amusement park it'd be called "NO FLAGS".  On a 5 star-rating system, it gets 0 stars.

Today I've been telling people that knew I went to the game last night about my adventure.  They're laughing and telling me, "Told you."  Literally.  That's what they're saying.  Honestly, most of the fond memories these locals have of that venue have to do with the tailgating in the parking lot or some story they remember from the 1980s.  Needless to say, unless you have a time machine and/or you're a baseball fanatic, pay the $17 and hang out in the parking lot.


THE WIRK

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Movie Review: Just Wright ~ The only way the Nets make the NBA playoffs this season

In preparation for the 1st round of the NBA Playoffs, I watched the movie, "Just Wright".  It's a romantic comedy, with a sports theme starring Queen Latifah and Common.  Queen Latifah plays a character, Lesley Wright, who works as a trainer/rehab specialist.  Common is Scott McKnight, the star guard for the New Jersey Nets.

****  Did you know I submitted a photo and was selected to be a paid extra for this movie, but couldn't shoot because I had to prepare for a work project?  I was being sent out of the country for a customer and need to prepare otherwise, I would've been a part of shooting for 3 days.  Talk about a missed opportunity!

As I watched the movie, I was amused at how real it is.  I've seen how women search and ogle the family/WAGs section of the stands.  I've seen the envy in their eyes.  I've seen the gold-digging, unscrupulous types try to con players and I've seen players fall for the con.  I've sat in the family section for years.  It's a quiet sister-hood, for obvious reasons.

I also know what it's like to deal with and work with an athlete who's rehabbing an injury.  It's not sunshine and roses.  I can't describe the emotion I felt when I saw Queen Latifah's character throw ice onto an injured Scott McKnight.  Many years ago frustration overtook me, and I threw water.  It's tough trying to get someone to get up and move, when they're depressed and broken.  "Tough" isn't even the word.  Those times can be downright awful.  When you throw water on a 7 footer, who doesn't want to get up, you better be ready for a fight...

I found the movie to be funny, since it's the closest the New Jersey Nets are going to get to the NBA Playoffs this year.  I enjoyed watching cameos from Dwyane Wade, Dwight Howard, Rajon Rondo, etc.  The movie may not have won any awards, but for a girl who loves romantic comedies and sports ~ "Just Wright" was "just right"!


THE WIRK

Vitaly Potapenko is an Assistant Coach for the Indiana Pacers ~ Who knew?

Are my eyes deceiving me or is Vitaly Potapenko really an assistant coach for the Indiana Pacers?  Wow.  I just saw him sitting behind the Pacers bench.  I knew Vitaly back when he was with the Cleveland Cavaliers.  The Ukraine Train was very good friends with my first fiancee, and went to college at Wright State University (i.e. where I grew up).  When my ex and I started dating, Vitaly was around.  I like him.  I remember that he got engaged first, then I did, and then Bobby.  ****  Incidentally the 3 couples who all got engaged never got married and there was one "switcheroo".

The stories I could tell, but won't...  I should dig up the pictures of the crew back then.  It all seems like a lifetime ago!  I haven't kept up with the Pacers much this season (i.e. obviously), but I'm very impressed with how well they've been playing against the Chicago Bulls.

Over the weekend, I went to Atlantic City and saw the score during the 4th quarter for Game 1 of the Pacers v Bulls series and couldn't believe my eyes.  The Pacers were in the lead.  Chicago came back to win, thanks to Kyle Korver and Derrick Rose.

Game 2 looks like it's following the same script!  23.4 seconds left and the Bulls only lead by 2, 88-90. 

Game ON!


THE WIRK

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Ortiz defeated Berto ~ Ortiz is the new WBC welterweight champion

I had completely forgotten that Victor Ortiz was fighting Andre Berto tonight.  I wanted to watch this fight for a couple of reasons.  1) I can't wait for Manny Pacquiao v Shane Mosley and this fight was going to serve as an appetizer, and 2) I have a friend, John, who loves boxing and thinks highly of Berto.

I saw a tweet from Dan Rafael and immediately switched from the Portland Trail Blazers v Dallas Mavericks game to HBO for the fight.

I'm not going to do a post for the fight, but for those of you that want a summary, here are my (Twitter user: TheWirk) round by round Tweets.  The most recent ones are towards the top.  Enjoy and catch the replay, if you can.  It was a good fight!
  • i was right ~ congrats to ortiz! now back to basketball... #berto v #ortiz
  • i have #ortiz winning and beating #berto. announce the winner so i can go back to basketball #blazers v #mavs!
  • fight over - i give it to ortiz #berto v #ortiz
  • ortiz looks like he's one round away from victory. this is a great appetizer for the #mosley v #pacquiao fight on 5/7! #berto v #ortiz
  • berto kept backing up until he found the ropes to hold himself up. ortiz bringing the offense. #waitingforbertotofall #berto v #ortiz
  • i know nothing about scoring boxing, but i have ortiz as the winner so far... #berto v #ortiz
  • 11th to come #berto v #ortiz
  • berto just hit the mat, but it wasn't a knockdown. we have a slugfest now! #berto v #ortiz
  • it's the 10th and ortiz just lost one point for the punch to the back of the head... announcers don't seem to agree. #berto v #ortiz
  • 9th round... ortiz keeps hitting berto behind his head ~ the next time he loses a point. #berto v #ortiz
  • @danrafaelespn you weren't kidding! you can hear the crowd's boos when they show mayweather on tv #berto v #ortiz
  • berto in corner being told to go for the body. the 8th starts NOW #berto v #ortiz
  • both guys are def fighting and in it to win it now... berto just did a weeble wobble impression, and did not fall down. #berto v #ortiz
  • getting ready for the 7th... #berto v #ortiz
  • berto is bringing the offense now! ooooooooooooh ~ ortiz just knocks down berto! #berto v #ortiz
  • in the 6th and down goes ortiz! #berto v #ortiz
  • #mayweather sitting by the ring for #berto v #ortiz... closest he'll be to a ring tonight than he'll be on 5/7 for #pacquiao...
  • it's the 5th & #ortiz has #berto on the ropes again. announcer says, "berto is fighting this fight like he needs one fight to change it all"
  • berto told "stop bouncing and start boxing" #berto v #ortiz
  • berto is using the ropes to stand up #berto v #ortiz
  • ortiz is going to have this 4th round FOR SURE #berto v #ortiz
  • ortiz looks to like he's in it to win it. throwing and landing more punches than berto... berto looks tired. #berto v #ortiz
  • ortiz seems to be smiling in the ring.. def more offense coming from him. #berto v #ortiz
  • start of the 3rd round... #berto v #ortiz
  • i think berto better wake up... #ortiz looks like he has more fight in him now... pun intended. oooh ~ #berto just knocked down ortiz!
  • #ortiz knocked down #berto already... 1st round.
  • @danrafaelespn omg, thanks for this tweet. i just flipped to the fight! #berto v #ortiz

THE WIRK

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Caps defeat the Rangers, 2-1 in OT ~ Caps lead the series 1-0

Mike Green was back in action, as the Washington Capitals took a 1-0 lead in the 1st round playoff series v the New York Rangers.  The Caps goals were scored by Alex Ovechkin and Alexander Semin.  ****  Matt Gilroy had the goal for the Rangers.  It took overtime, but the Caps were victorious at the Verizon Center.

Incidentally, I watched the game on TV and saw Wheel of Fortune's own, Pat Sajak, at the game.  A Tweep told me that Sajak is from Maryland and might even be a season ticket holder.  That's semi-correct.  I checked his bio, and he was born and raised in Chicago, IL.  He splits time between Maryland and California.  Who knew?

Game 2 of the series is in Washington, DC on Friday at 7:30.


THE WIRK

Jay-Z's Life+Style blog and his $50,000 visit to the Kentucky locker room

Last night I was catching up with a friend and was pointed towards Jay-Z's new blog, Life+Style.  The link to the blog is: http://www.lifeandstyle.com/ and it's hot.  Then again, I pretty much like everything Jay-Z does.  I'm a huge fan.

As I was clicking away on his blog, I was impressed by the design and content on the site.  I was also reminded of Jay-Z's $50,000 fine from the NBA for being in the University of Kentucky locker room during this year's Final Four.
 
Jay-Z, Home and Home Tour 2010

Beyonce and Jay-Z, Game 3: Cavs v Celtics 2010
Jay-Z has been to numerous basketball games and events.  Although I've never seen him at any collegiate events, I'd be willing to bet that the Final Four wasn't his first rodeo.  Of course Jay-Z knew he shouldn't be in the Kentucky Wildcats' locker room, but we all know that $50,000 is NOTHING for the New Jersey Nets' Russian billionaire owner, Mikhail Prokhorov. 

I guess the NBA had to do something, but this fine just made me smile.  I'm a betting woman.  What do you think?  Do you think Brandon Knight ends up in New Jersey?  If I was Prokhorov, I'd ask Jay-Z do all my recruiting.  It's GENIUS.

In reality, I guess only the ping pong balls know where the Nets will pick in the NBA draft but it never hurts to have Jay-Z affiliated (i.e. minority owner) with an organization when it comes to recognizing and signing talent.

On to the next one...


THE WIRK

Mosley v Pacquiao ~ I've got my tickets and Philippines watches

Today, I received notification that one of the tickets I have for the Shane Moseley v Manny Pacquiao sold on StubHub.  About a week ago, I saw a commercial for the upcoming shows on Showtime about the fight (i.e. that is less than a month away on Saturday, May 7 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena).  Yes, folks...  The boxing match is quickly approaching.

I can't believe the fight is less than a month away.  Today, I saw on Twitter that Bob Arum said the fight is a sell-out.  I'm not sure how that's true though, since I went on Ticketmaster to check if I could pull another ticket (i.e. and I could).

At any rate, I'm ready to go.  I have my tickets.  Further, in anticipation of the event, I even bought some Unisilver watches that feature the Philippines on the face.  I'm not familiar with the brand, but when I saw the rubber watches posted on Emma Camacho (i.e a family member's page), I had to have a couple for the fight.  ****  She's on Facebook, if you want to check out what she's selling.  She ships internationally.

I like my new watches, but I like money too.  I may even re-sell the fun timepieces in Las Vegas.  You never know! 

If you want to show your Philippine pride and you're interested in any of the watches, please let me know.  Maybe we can do some business!

Aren't the watches fun?  I can't wait to sport one at the fight.  If you've never been to a Pacquiao fight it definitely is a cultural event.

Go, Manny Pacquiao!


THE WIRK

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Tiesto's Club Life Tour hit Washington DC ~ Great show and an attendance record

Yesterday most of my friends were excited for one thing only.  Club Glow brought Tiesto's Club Life Tour to the DC Armory last night.  It was an 18+up show, and that normally makes my friends hesitate.  However, the chance to dance and be a part of the crowd of 10,000+ for Tiesto's largest US show (i.e. minus festivals), were opportunities that couldn't be passed up.  ****  It's my understanding that this was an attendance record for a US show (i.e. minus festivals).

I used to date a guy that loved all things Tiesto.  Some people followed sports and Michael Jordan.  He was all about Ministry of Sound and Tiesto.  ****  I think it's because he spent a lot of time vacationing internationally.  Some people vacation in Las Vegas and Florida.  He went to the Full Moon Party in Thailand and partied in Ibiza.  I once listened to "Beautiful Things" by Andain and Tiesto over 50 times in one day because it was he and his roommate's favorite.  If you haven't heard the tune, where have you been?!?!  Here it is for you to check out, since I mentioned it.



I haven't been as familiar with the club scene, since Jason and I broke up many years ago.  Let's face it ~ I'm not the girl you'll find running around Winter Music Conference, but every now and again you will catch me at a place where Tiesto is spinning.  The last time I saw Tiesto was in 2008, and I can STILL FEEL the heat from all the bodies dancing.  Surprisingly, I think since the doors were open for the loading docks etc, the Armory was kept cool enough for last night's show.

The DJ's for last night's show were:
Matt Goldman
Roberto Gonzalez
Cedric Gervais - http://cedricgervais.com/
Tiƫsto

Matt Goldman
To be expected, the crowd grew as the night went on, with Goldman doing the hardest work revving up people who arrived early. 

Roberto Gonzalez followed up the heavy-lifting.  ****  I actually left during part of his set to run over to RFK Stadium to see David Beckham. 

Changing of the guard: Matt Goldman out, Roberto Gonzalez in

Cedric Gervais
By the time I returned to the Armory, Cedric Gervais was playing to about 75-80% of a full house.  Gervais was killing it, and he definitely had the crowd riled up for Tiesto to come out.  Around 10:30 the Tiesto chants started.



The last time I was at a venue like this (i.e. with this many people, standing in a building with a long "hall" was when I was in the UK and saw Jay-Z at Alexandra Palace!

Tiesto came out and did his thing.  My friend, Giselle, posted the Tiesto remix of "Girls with Bangs" by Lune, on her facebook profile.  When it came on I know she was thrilled!  Here's the tune, if you want to check it out.


The crowd of 10,000 plus people at the Armory was treated to a spectacular show.  I was excited to be part of the event, especially since it was my first time at this particular venue.


Tiesto
Later in the evening I found myself next to Goldman with Gervais and Gonzalez behind me, while Tiesto was on stage.  Yep, that's how it should be!




THE WIRK

LA Galaxy v DC United ~ I finally saw David Beckham in person

Last night David Beckham was in town with the LA Galaxy to take on DC United at RFK Stadium.  I'll admit right now, that I don't pay attention to soccer except during the World Cup and the Olympics.  I'm not even a huge David Beckham fan compared to my other friends.  Sure, he's attractive... 

However, unlike some of my girlfriends, I don't want to chase him.


At any rate, if seeing Beckham was on my bucket list, I guess I can check it off now.

As for the game itself, it ended tied with a score of 1-1.  Landon Donovan did not play for the Galaxy.  If you want the specifics on the game, you'll need to "google" it.  Like I said, I don't really watch soccer!


THE WIRK