Monday, October 09, 2006

Sports in the D

In light of the spanking my Detroit Tigers gave the the New York Yankees this past weekend, I thought I'd give a shout out to my Detroit sports teams and sing their praises. Let me begin with baseball.


For as long as I can remember, the Tigers have been pretty bad. The only consistency they've ever had was being consistent in losing game after game. I remember going to my first Tigers game in 1993 with my dad and younger brother. Back then, they were playing in the old Detroit Tigers stadium, which was located in a rather 'ghetto' part of town. Although the stadium has seen better days, it's still a landmark in Detroit and I wonder what the city's gonna do with it. I still remember watching the news when the final game was played in that stadium. Whether it was in print, over the radio, or on TV, people were being told to not try to take 'souvenirs' with them, like a chunk of concrete, a bathroom sign or a stadium seat. (believe you me, if there wasn't an increased amount of police there that day, half of the seats would've been taken home.) If losing was all I could remember of the Tigers, imagine my surprise when the ballclub turns a complete 180 and becomes one of the best teams in the entire major league. Win after win, they kept stomping on everyone. Many analysts say that it is because of the new manager, Jim Leyland, but I think the new pitching lineup had a integral role in this turnaround. From the bottom of the barrel to the top of the hill, I think this turnaround is representative of what other Detroit sports teams have done.


As the 'little sister' of big brother we know and love as the NBA, the athletes who play in the WNBA never seem to get their props, even though they totally deserve it. In a league of only teams, the Detroit Shock managed to win the WNBA championship again this year. As an avid believe in honesty, I must say that I didn't know that the Shock were even in the playoffs, let alone playing in the WNBA finals. When I was in Detroit a few weeks ago, I turned on the TV and saw that Detroit was playing in the series deciding game 5 of the WNBA finals against the Sacramento Monarchs. Normally, the Shock play in the same arena that the Detroit Pistons play in, the Palace of Auburn Hills. But for this game, they were required to change venues because of a 'conflict in schedule'. Who bumped the Detroit Shock? None other than Mariah Carey and her monstrous badonkadonk. Goes to show you what little respect these women get in the world of sports. Anyways, the Shock go on to win, and in good 'ol Detroit fashion, they start celebrating with bottles of champagne. But whether it was a joke or what, one of the players opens up a bottle of malt liquor, or 'a Fawty' as we say in the D, and pours it on the head of another player. I'm so proud of my Detroit Shock. One of these days, I will go to a WNBA game and cheer on my ladies.


Like the Tigers, the 'Bad Boys' were terrible. Since moving to Detroit in '93, they've had sub 500 seasons for nearly 10 years. After a series of junky head coaches and poor managerial moves, in comes Joe Dumars and Rick Carlisle, who together, turn things around and start tearing the league a new one. In the first year as head coach, Carlisle takes a team who couldn't buy a winning season to a 50-32 record and a spot in the post season. Under Carlisle and Joe D, the rebirth of the Pistons was taking place in the '02-'03 season. The highly touted 'Best Starting 5' in the league was beginning to form with Rip Hamilton coming from Washington, Chauncey Billups coming from Minnesota, Tayshaun Prince being drafted from Kentucky, and Ben Wallace coming from Orlando a couple seasons before. It wasn't until the '03-'04 season that everything came together with the acquisition of Rasheed Wallace from Portland and a new coach in Larry Brown which resulted in winning the NBA Championship over a dysfunctional LA Lakers team. Ever since that year, the Pistons have been on the top of the league and I can't wait to see how this season unfolds.

Well, I guess I'm not THAT huge of a Detroit sports fan because I don't care much for the Wings, even though Detroit is knicknamed 'Hockeytown', and I don't think very highly of the Lions. This is mostly because I don't follow/enjoy hockey, and I think the management behind the Lions is taking away everything that's supportable about a team that has yet to win its first game this season. If people REALLY want it, I'll give my thoughts on these 2 teams, but until then, I'm gonna keep those thought to myself and lock them away in the mental vault that holds the solution to world peace and identity of who shot JFK. Until then, peace, grace, and much love to all.


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