With the NFL season coming to a close, I usually lull around before posting anything here again. When I do, it’s usually regarding the NFL Draft, because I get carried away on that subject. This year, however, I want to see if I can create more discussion with those of you who are reading this. I want to talk about more than just the NFL game previews. So this week, I’ll be giving you my take on some of the biggest sports stories of the week. Feel free to comment on here, Facebook, or on Twitter @TorresSports.
In case you have been living under a rock all week, the NFL is set to have it’s first openly gay NFL player, as Michael Sam of Missouri announced he is gay. He will be drafted this year, and there has been much talk as to how people should take this. There’s only one way people should deal with this: tolerance and acceptance. This is 2014, and it shouldn’t be shocking that people are born differently every single day. Being a gay player means nothing more or less. People can make arguments about what it will be like in the shower with an openly gay player. Well guess, what? Your favorite players have been showering with gay players their entire collegiate and professional careers, they just didn’t know about it. Well what do you say to your kids about a gay player on your favorite team? Well if your kid doesn’t know about differences in sexuality, you should be teaching her/him a lot more than you are already. Take it as a teaching experience. What about the bible? Well if it is your belief that being gay is somehow a choice, and against the bible, I can’t change your mind on that. I will say, however, that I’m of the belief that the bible teaches you not to be judgmental, to love one another and not carry hatred. If people who disagree with your beliefs can tolerate them, you can do the same for theirs. What about Sam’s draft stock? I said I wouldn’t get into the NFL Draft, but there’s no reason this announcement should hurt his draft stock. I won’t get into the details about how good he is or what his weaknesses are. I will say though, that I’ll take a player who has been through a rough background like Sam (multiple family deaths, siblings in jail) and overcame obstacles to be a captain on a team that knew he was gay, over the entitled early draft entree who expects everything to be handed to him. So let’s be progressive, and accept that this should not be an issue for the fans, league, or players.
The longtime Yankees shortstop announced he is retiring at the end of the season. Why is this a story? Because Jeter is arguably the greatest shortstop of all time. GASP! How could I say such a thing? He’s not even the greatest Yankee of all time! What about all the others in baseball history? Don’t forget them! Well I will, if they weren’t even alive when my dad was being born in the 50s. I’d like to see any of them get a hit off of Justin Verlander today, or beat a throw to second from Mike Trout. Cal Ripkin Jr., another you could make the argument for, doesn’t even come close to Jeter’s career batting average. Ozzie Smith, another candidate for the SS GOAT, only hit for over .300 once in his career, and he had 0 homeruns that year. Meanwhile, Jeter’s 3,000th hit? A homerun. I may be putting a lot into Jeter’s offensive numbers, but in his prime he had amazing range and is known for some of the best hustle plays in baseball history. Just go YouTube some of his historic highlights, and have fun watching one of the best. You won’t get to after this year.
I cannot stand basketball arguments about who is better than whom? Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan? James or Magic Johnson? It doesn’t matter. So when James came out and said he’s going to be in the Mount Rushmore of NBA greats, I stayed away from all the polls and questions ESPN and other outlets had about whether this was true. Fans, especially James-haters, were in an uproar calling him cocky, arrogant, reminding people that he’s not clutch. So what did James do? He delivered one of the season’s best highlights by besting one of the league’s best shooters, Stephen Curry, with a last second three pointer and a dominating performance. If you ask me, James WILL be one of the best in NBA History, if not THE best, when he finally retires. All the Jordan disciplines can rag on me all they want, but the fact is James is unlike anyone else the Association has ever seen. Think of Wilt Chamberlain’s physical dominance over everyone else, and you have that with James today. No one else can lock down Derrick Rose in the playoffs of his MVP season like James did, AND play the five spot like he has done as well. Is he cocky? Maybe. But when you’re as good as James is, it’s simply confidence and truth. So let’s stop all the James hating and appreciate that every time we watch him play, we get to witness an all-time great.
Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognitio:
Ted Wells finally came to the conclusion of his investigation of the bullying situation in the Dolphins organization and concluded that Martin did not fabricate anything, and Incognito (with help from two other linemen) was harassing and bullying him along with others. This comes as no surprise, as I find Incognito to be one of the worst things about the NFL. He was kicked off of two college teams for his conduct, run out of St. Louis for the same reason, voted dirtiest player in the league, started a fight with a Houston Texans player this past pre-season, and accused of sexually harassing a woman at a team event. Why the Dolphins decided this guy should have a leadership role, I’ll never know. I suppose that speaks of why they can’t be a more successful franchise. Regardless, people need to stop blaming the victim in Martin just because they think he’s a pansy for running out on his team. Martin may have handled it wrong in terms of not bringing this to everyone’s attention sooner, or confronting Incognito, but the fact remains that Incognito is and was wrong on a much larger scale.
Thanks for reading, everyone. I’d love to discuss any of these topics or others with you, so don’t hesitate to reach out.