Saturday, February 8, 2014

Sports this 'n' that

Alex Rodriguez finally manned up and took his medicine on Friday, giving up his ludicrous twin lawsuits against Major League Baseball and the Players' Association and opting to serve out his year-long suspension. Now, all that's left for Rodriguez is to issue a major mea culpa and finally, once and for all, admit that he actually did continue to use performance enhancing drugs (PED's) while with the Yankees. The defense's primary argument all along has been that Rodriguez never failed a drug test, but after wasting a ton of money and time on ambulance chasers and needless litigation, Rodriguez needs only to see how Mark McGwire was able to redeem himself in the eyes of the Lords of Baseball after admitting his own usage. An act of contrition on the part of Rodriguez would not only appease the media, but baseball's hierarchy as well.

Of course, in New York, the tabloid media will deign to believe that whomever is the starting third baseman for the Yankees this year, be it Kelly Johnson or Eduardo Nunez or someone else, will merely be keeping the seat warm for Rodriguez should he in fact return to the Yankees next year. By then, he'll be 40, his prime long since past. One must wonder if Rodriguez's current steady, ex-pro wrestler Torrie Wilson, might've gotten him into a very long, painful hammerlock to get him to finally tap out to the suspension.............

NFL Network & CBS have reached a deal that will have CBS giving up 8 weeks of Thursday night programming in the fall and subbing it out for the NFL Network's Thursday Night Football package. Of course, the pundits are wondering where CBS' hit sitcoms, such as The Big Bang Theory and The Crazy Ones, will land over those two months. Early indications were that those series would have their season premieres held to the November sweeps to maximize viewer interest. Fox uses similar strategy due to their commitment to the baseball playoffs and World Series. Temporary relocation of the Thursday block to Saturdays would solve everyone's problems, methinks.

If this works, I would think ESPN might be willing to share Monday Night Football with step-sister network ABC, from whence they acquired the franchise a number of years back. Given that MNF will be entering its 45th anniversary season in September, it would be appropriate to let part of the celebration be on its original network, wouldn't you think?

With the Winter Olympics having gotten underway in Sochi, those of us who crave watching live coverage will need more than one DVR, trust me. All the live stuff will be on early in the morning, while NBC, which defined "plausibly live" several years ago, will risk ratings with same-day taped coverage in prime time. They simply don't want to give Today a vacation at the risk of those same ratings points. Their loss.

Step-sister network USA will have live coverage in the morning, clearing the decks for their usual prime time fare (WWE, reruns of Modern Family, etc.). One wonders, however, how they'll handle the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, taking place this week in New York, or did ESPN take that away this year?

All I know is that the emphasis on team competition in figure skating, which is supposed to be the Winter Olympic equivalent of gymnastics in the Summer Games, won't really help the sport at all. Just sayin'.

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