Tag Archives: winning

Flying At Your Own Level

Last weekend I was able to watch the Academy Award winning documentary Icarus.¬†Bryan Fogel’s filmic journey into the world of international athletic doping, from experimenting amateur cyclist all the way through to playing midwife to the expos√© that led to Russian athletes being (conditionally) banned from the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, is either shocking or business as usual, depending upon your level of sports cynicism going into the viewing.

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Jasmin Bambur of United States during the Alpine Skiing – Men’s Super-G, Sitting at PyeongChang: an antidote to Icarus?

It so happened that, after finishing the movie and turning back over from Netflix to regular broadcast programming, I stumbled upon NBCSN’s coverage of the Winter Paralympics, also coming to you from PyeongChang, South Korea. I caught a showing of the men’s Super-G competitions, both standing and seated, and if it wasn’t quite as spectacular a show as the regular Olympics alpine events, it was at least athletes in competition and striving towards being the best.

The juxtaposition of those two programs I watched, the scandals of Icarus and the Paralympic competition, coming one right after the other, suggested a bigger picture, and perhaps the possibility that the one event provided the correct answer to the other.

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Delayed-Action Predation

Preds fans had to wait until overtime to see their team take Game 1 on Friday night. No problem, really–they should be used to the waiting by now.

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Good times keep coming for the Nashville Predators; maybe another team can learn something from them?

Not only did Nashville wait until OT against the Ducks, and the playoffs in general, to turn it on and start taking it out on other teams, but they’ve been running a slow burn towards success for years now. Though they may be a surprise team this postseason, you can’t say you didn’t see them coming, because The DFR made note of their development a couple of years ago–back when the idea of the Predators in the Conference Final seemed a tad premature.

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The Head And The Heart, Olympics Edition

The Rio Olympics have now been in the rear-view mirror for over a week. That’s enough time to make an assessment–or, perhaps, a reassessment–of the Games from a dispassionate distance in time: still recent enough to have a clear remembrance of the event, but with enough days passed to gaze at the thing with a less biased eye.

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Neymar and the Brazilian fans: a gold medal made of joy.

Certainly, going into the Games, I would have had to cop to a heavy bias against the Olympics–a position I made perfectly clear in my pre-event assessment in this space.

However, I did at a certain point overcome my skepticism enough to start watching some of the events. And in doing so, I found myself confronted again and again by the most powerful refutation of every damnation one can muster against the modern Olympic movement: joy.

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A Tale Of Two Teams

It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Not there, nor there.

“There” in the first case being Houston, where the Astros are not exactly living up to their previous billing. And the other “there” being Philadelphia, where the Phillies had no billing at all, much like the last few years, but are most definitely outstripping whatever measly expectations were laid upon them before the beginning of this season.

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The Astros: so far, falling on their faces.


In fact, both teams–the expected good and the expected awful–are sitting quite close to each other in the overall standings, proving once again that in all things, but particularly sports, this prediction thing is quite difficult indeed.

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Groundhog! Da?

The calendar is showing March 11, so we have definitely left February and its rodent-based holidays in the dust. Still, there’s a story playing out in the NHL right now that has certain echoes of everyone’s favorite February-based movie, Groundhog Day.

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It’s the story of the Washington Capitals, of course. The Caps’ perpetual struggle to achieve something in the postseason, after a relative lack of struggle in the regular season, has reached near epic proportions. This year’s runaway winners seem like locks to challenge one of the West’s dynasty teams in the Final, and Alex Ovechkin, in the Bill Murray role, looks sure to finally embrace his Andie McDowell–in the form of a large, engraved silver chalice–after all the misadventures of the past.

Then again, it’s the NHL. And it’s the Capitals. There are no sure things here.

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