Grab Your Vuvuzelas And Your Shakira CD It’s 30 Days Until The World Cup

It will be four years this July since Germany’s Mario Gotze put the world in a state of pandemonium as he puts in the winning goal against Argentina in the 113th minute of the 2014 World Cup Final. Many memories came out of the World cup in Brazil such as Robin Van Persie’s diving header against Spain and James Rodriguez volley. Both goals would get nominated for the Puskas award which is the best goal of the year. Eventually the Rodriguez goal would take home the award, but both stick to memory. People thought that it was going to be Brazils year and since they were playing at home that it would’ve been that much more special until they ran into Germany in the semi-finals. They ended up getting embarrassed 7-1 and sent numerous fans into tears as their World Cup dreams were crushed. The tournament had a siting from the vampire Luis Suarez himself. Against Italy Suarez and Italian centre back Giorgio Chiellini have a coming together when the Uruguayan forward bites the shoulder of the defender. You can definitely say the 2014 World Cup was one to remember filled with memories.

Here we are, one month away from the largest sports competition in the universe. Literally the world will be watching to see who will raise the 18K gold trophy and claim glory for the next 4 years. This summer the tournament will be held in Russia where many of the natives will be trying to snipe one top cheese in the rink because, well Russia is not known for is football (that’s what ill be calling soccer), but for its hockey. While I sat and scratched my ass as to why Russia is holding the World Cup I tried to be optimistic and just get amped up to watch football all day for a month straight. Seeing all of the worlds greatest footballers come together and play in one large tournament is a sight to behold while they battle for the honor of their countries. Speaking of playing for honor the USMNT will not be at the WC this year since they failed to qualify. This past October they had to beat Trinidad and Tobago who is ranked 94 in the world standings as the US is 24, but since #ThingsTimHowardCouldSave against Belgium in the knockout round in 2014 the USMNT is just been terrible. How the hell do you make it out of the group of death with Germany, Portugal, and Ghana to just be an absolute laughing stock years down the road. Me personally I am glad we lost because there has been some serious changes needed and the president of U.S football has been changed and so has the manager (coach). All right enough of my small rant lets get back to the tournament.

Group A: Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay.

-Who will win the group: Uruguay. As much as of a pain as he is Luis Suarez is arguably the best striker in the world and can create his own goals with skill. Pairing him alongside another incredible striker in Edinson Cavani I think keeping those two off the score sheet will be an absolute chore for the backlines of these other countries.

-Who will advance: Egypt. One name is the reason why I think they will advance and that is Mohamed Salah who is hotter than a grease fire right now and I cannot imagine he cools off anytime soon. It will be a grind and his teammates will have to step up if they think about going anywhere, but home.

 

Group B: Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Iran.

-Who will win the group: Spain. Winning the world cup in 2010 and having up and coming players performing at their top level I think they will go very far since they have a stacked midfield and the worlds best goalkeeper in David De Gea paired with Sergio Ramos in defense it will be a tough job to score.

-Who will advance: Portugal. The Portuguese know how to wear teams down and outside of Brazil are one of the most skilled teams. Oh yeah I almost forgot they have CRISTIANO FUCKING RONALDO THE WORLDS BEST PLAYER. Go ahead @ me I stand behind my statement fully. All the guy does is win, but I’ll make my case another time.

 

Group C: France, Australia, Peru, Denmark.

-Who will win the group: France. The talent and depth that encompasses this French squad is absolutely mind boggling. Truly from top to bottom they have some of the best players at every single position and sure say someone gets hurt they have another player who can do that same job. They’re one of my heavy favorites to win it all.

-Who will advance: Denmark. A good midfield with a great player such as Christian Eriksen will see Denmark through to the knockout round. Other role players will help them through such as goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and young defender Andreas Christensen. I don’t see Australia or Peru moving on.

 

Group D: Argentina, Croatia, Iceland, Nigeria.

-Who will win the group: Argentina. This Argentina squad is very top heavy with players like Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain, Angel Di Maria, Paulo Dybala, and Mauro Icardi just to name a few. In a group like this I know it will be tough to stop this attack, but their fault is in defense. I don’t think the defense is weak enough to stop them from going through.

-Who will advance: Croatia. One of the toughest calls so far on my list because if we learned anything from the Euro’s two years ago the viking clap took Iceland on their old ship to the quarter finals. Barring the viking spirits, Croatia just has more talent.

 

Group E: Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Serbia.

-Who will win the group: Brazil. For the most part this should be a pretty easy group for Brazil with the exception of the swiss cheese factor who could give them a hassle. Neymar will soon be the best player in the world and with pieces for every position I think they bounce back after an abysmal ending last WC.

-Who will advance: Switzerland. Two decent goalkeepers and a few solid players will see the swiss advance into the knockout stage. The x-factor for this team is Xherdan Shaqiri who at times can look incredible as a winger. They lost to Argentina in the group of 16 last time so I can see them making it that far again.

 

Group F: Germany, Sweden, Mexico, South Korea.

-Who will win the group: Germany. They are the defending champs that have added young talent. Should they stay healthy they’ll walk away in this group.

-Who will advance: Mexico. They are one of the most resilient teams in the tournament and after getting knocked out last WC on what most were saying was a bad pen given by the ref I see them going for blood and if goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa plays unconscious they move onto the next round.

 

Group G: Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England.

-Who will win the group: Belgium. Another team that you could compare to the French, but not quite on they’re level. Young talent is in abundance with talent levels through the roof and a few vets to take this team very very deep. Eden Hazard is already a top world player and his talent has so much room to grow coming off of the wing. Kevin De Bruyne in the midfield can pass, cross, and release just absolute crackers from outside of the box. One team the is fun to watch.

-Who will advance: England. With a not confident Euros performance in 2016 I don’t see them going too far into the knockout stage. The other two countries just don’t have the fire to get past these two teams. The only hope is that they get Harry Kane all of the ibuprofen they can find because he will be carrying the team on his back. A few young talents sprinkled in will get them into the group of 16.

 

Group H: Poland, Senegal, Columbia, Japan.

-Who will win they group: Columbia. After making it to the quarter finals last WC, they have a good balance between age of players. Young players, experienced players, and vets that will get them going. The wingers have smoke coming out of their boots with them burning the outside defenders. James Rodriguez with tidy play in the midfield and Radamel Falcao still knows how to score goals so I would keep an eye on him.

-Who will advance: Poland. A tough choice as either this or my other team that I would’ve selected will have to rely heavily on one player. I had to choose striker Robert Lewandowski and Poland because he can make his own goals.

 

This World Cup will be one to watch with players having evolved since the previous tournament and also one to remember as the US, Italy, and the back to back Copa America champs Chile. Not to forget the Netherlands will also be a big miss this year in Russia. I love telling people who are not into soccer to watch because the hype is unreal and the passion is there. So I encourage you to pick a country whether it’s on a whim or you have some connection to it and follow them I promise it’ll be exciting. The tournament kicks off Thursday June 14  10AM central time.

 

 

Please God, Not Another Cavs vs. Warriors Championship

Imagining a life without sports is damn near close to a life without…. I’m honestly not sure what life would be like without sports. Probably not very good, and I’m willing to bet on that one {Cheers to legal sports betting}.

As much as I enjoy the sweet nothings of watching athletic events, I am what one could call a “Playoff Bandwagon Fan” for certain sports. Football and golf are easy to keep track of; football is a couple nights a week / all day Sunday thing for a couple of months, and yeah I might miss the Thursday and Friday rounds of golf tournaments, but the weekends are where it starts to get wild. Hockey, baseball, and basketball; no offense, but you’re going to have to let me know when playoffs start. There are too many games going on at all different times and it’s hard to keep up, mainly because I’m rocking the no cable life and my mom changed the locks so I can’t get in to watch them at her place. I do get updates on Twitter, so I’m not entirely out of the loop.. I’m just not dedicated enough to the cause I guess.

NHL playoffs are going on and they’re pretty exciting to watch. The Blackhawks aren’t involved in any way shape or form. They’re also very far away from being a Stanley Cup contender again, but playoff hockey is too entertaining not to watch.

I can’t be the only person who is going to be more than slightly upset if it’s a Cavaliers vs Warriors finals for the FOURTH. YEAR. IN. A. ROW!

The 2015 season was cool when the Warriors were the young guns on the block, taking home championships, and snatching the most wins in a season record from the Bulls.

We all remember 2016 when the Warriors blew a 3-1 series lead which led to some of the most comical pictures you will every come across.

Lebron also brought home his first ring for Cleveland, which made it an exciting and emotional year for him.

Alright, 2017, the year the tie is broken, who’s taking 2 out of 3? Golden State won, alright move on, let some of the other teams have a turn to play. No one wants to watch the same two teams play again, and again, and again, and one more time.

I have a problem with how repetitive it’s getting, I do not have a problem with the players. I have nothing but respect for any professional athlete. I’m sore for 3 days after a pick up game with my buddies and these guys are playing nearly every night of the week. I mean there are a few players that I don’t like, but they did it to themselves.

On the Warriors, I dislike Draymond Green and Zaza Pachulia. Why? Click on their name and find out, it won’t take you very long to see that they’re both big ol’ bags of dicks. They’re dirty players, and not in a Ron Artest way. They take cheap shots to try and take players out of the game, they’re clowns. For the rest of the team who I’m familiar with, I don’t have a problem with them. Curry and Durant seem like good guys who are both incredibly talented at basketball, and you can’t blame Durant for wanting to be a championship contender, because he wasn’t getting anywhere with OKC. And I’ve always liked Nick Young and that his nickname is Swaggy P.

The Jordan/Lebron conversation is one I don’t care to have because people are going to believe what they want and no one is going to convince them otherwise. They are both incredibly talented NBA legends and just being involved in the conversation of who is the GOAT speaks volume. Just let me know when Lebron gets to golf with Larry Bird and Bill Murray, drops a hole in one, plays basketball with the Looney Tunes, dabbles in minor league baseball, ALL AS THE STAR OF ONE OF THE GREATEST MOVIES OF EVERY 90’S BOYS LIFE! That’s all I’m going to say on the topic.

Slight detour, but now we’re back. Lebron is the only player on the Cavalier’s that I don’t care for. As a person, I bet he’s fine. His kids seem to like him, I heard he’s a charitable man, and he’s rich as fuuuuuuck. But as a basketball player, he’s the biggest flopping piece of shit to walk the face of this earth. Talented athlete, but still a lil’ bitch.

I wasn’t going to be mad if we saw the Bucks, or Timberpuppies, Raptors, or maybe the Jazz advance a little farther, it’s cool seeing the underdogs make a run. All aboard the Celtics and Rockets bandwagons, let’s make things interesting. I know Golden State is an overall powerhouse, but I still don’t understand how Cleveland makes it this far every year.

The Vegas Golden Knights Are Incredible

In maybe the greatest sports story since James Naismith spread the word on his ol’ Peach Basket Ball game, the Vegas Golden Knights are even at 1-1 in the Western Conference Finals. Like, how the hell aren’t people more excited about this? When they win the Cup and Disney makes the movie years down the line, kids are going to watch it and say it seems too unrealistic to be believable. A team full of players that were told by their former team that they didn’t want to protect them. A goalie who helped his team win three Stanley Cups during his time there was told that he wasn’t wanted. A head coach that was screwed by his old team down in Florida after a historic season with the Panthers was shipped off. All of these rejects came together to form an absolute wagon.

Every step along the way people, myself included, kept saying, “Oh they can’t keep this up. Good for them. Thats cute.” But these boys just keep proving all of us wrong. They are now three wins away from bring in the Stanley Cup Final. Can you imagine being a fan of teams like the Maple Leafs (50 seasons since their last Final appearance), Blues (47 seasons), Islanders (33 seasons) and the Canadians (24 seasons) and watching the new kid on the block come on and play for the greatest trophy in sports in their first season? And in a city like Las Vegas, that must really piss off old hockey guys.

You bet your ass I’m rooting for a Golden Knights Stanley Cup. To be watching that movie with my kids and say, “Yeah I remember I was at this bar when that happened” is some stuff straight out of my dad’s mouth. I always thought my dad was so cool for that, so if I can gain some cool points with my kids in the future I will take it.

Feliz Día de La Madre, Moms

We live in a country where we like to party, that’s why we have a holiday for everything. We have Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, 4th of July, MLK Jr Day, Memorial Day, Cinco de Mayo (which is just an excuse for Americans to get drunk and drink Tequila… wait that’s every Friday and Saturday for some people 😳) and the list goes on and on.

None of these holiday’s would even be a bleep on a technically non-existent radar if it weren’t for one thing, or species I should say…. Women. That is why Mother’s Day is single handedly the most important day of the year and should be treated as more than just another Sunday.

As much as my mother can rustle my jimmies, I am eternally grateful for her, and all women, for doing what they’re genetically designed to do by bringing people into existence. All of our holiday’s wouldn’t be shit if it weren’t for moms; whether you believe in religion or not, Mary was Jesus’ mother, all of our President’s have mothers (Trump might’ve been hatched, not 100% convinced otherwise), and all of the soldiers fighting for our freedom were once little tikes being told to eat their vegetables by, you guessed it, their mothers.

“Well, children couldn’t be created without sperm, so men are actually responsible for bringing everyone into existence.”

Alright chief, slow your role. We’ll give you Father’s Day to acknowledge your 45 seconds of humping like a rabbit in order to fulfill the reproductive process, but don’t get ahead of yourself.

Try this on for size:

Big daddy Warbucks stumbles across an empty plot of land and says, “And on this here property, I shall build a house.” He goes out and hires a construction company to build his house. Fast forward to however long it takes to build a house and boom, the house is on that once empty piece of land. Can he honestly say that he was responsible for the creation of that house? Absolutely not! He can say that without him it could not have been built but he did nothing more than provide the financial measures for it to be accomplished.

“My daddy built this house with his bare hands six years ago.”
“Your daddy is a liar.”

Just like building a baby, all a man does is provide his mandatory seed. Along with whatever financial/emotional support, massage giving responsibilities, and chocolate craving contributions he did for his baby mama, to avoid her ripping his head off like a Praying Mantis during the nine month pregnancy, is the extent to which he is responsible for creating a child.

Women literally grow a baby inside of them. Your temporary home was in your mothers stomach and once you were out in the world, her body produced food for you. That’s wild.

It’s safe to say that I’m a, quote unquote, mama’s boy but I will happily own up to that. I think the world of my mother and there’s not a chance I would be the grown boy that I am today without her.

From a young age, I knew I had a closer bond with my mom in comparison to my dad. Yeah, I remember my dad would let me beat him in putting contests, watch most of my sporting events, and taught me the ways to snag a mean tan by the pool; but nothing can trump my mom staying up all hours of the night when I was sick and helping me through a handful of rough breakups.

And if I hear a sentence like, “I’m a mother to 6 beautiful cats,” come outcha mouth I’m going to smack you and say,

I don’t plan on doing it anytime soon, or at all, but I don’t think there’s a bond or love strong enough that’s comparable to that of a mother and her child.

Unfortunately, life happens and my heart and prayers go out to everyone who has lost their mother every single day… One of my good friends and roommate in college lost his mom a few years before I met him. We had a couple heart-to-hearts and it was easy for me to see how much she meant to him. Obviously, my mom wanted to know about the guys I was living with and that topic got brought up. Though it was never directly talked about, he was habitually calling her “mom” when he saw her and she continues to ask how he’s doing to this day. Moms are effing awesome.

If you don’t have a good relationship with your mom, I get it. I haven’t talked to my dad in nearly three years so I understand how family relationships can go south. Whether you have communication with her or not, give her a quick thanks and let her know that you’re grateful to be alive because you wouldn’t be without her.

What’s that phrase about women? “Can’t live with em’, can’t live without em.” Yeah, it’s safe to say that’s about as true of a statement as you can hear. Next to the Warriors blowing a 3-1 lead.

Happy Mother’s Day to all mamas out there, and keep doing what you’re doing ✊🏼

Sox Cubs. Rivalry?

White Sox Vs. Cubs. A Rivalry?

Baseball is a long 162 game season where technically each game is equal to the next in value. But for some Chicago baseball fans there are six (sometimes obnoxiously four) games that have just a little bit more meaning than the others. Those being when the Sox and Cubs get together for what is now being called, The Crosstown Classic.

Personally, these are my favorite six games of the year. Although they count the same in the record book as any other game, they really do have something more to them. And if you have ever been to one of them in person, you can feel the difference in the atmosphere. Games are always sold out, (Yes, I know most Cub games already are) fans are always energetic and ready to go, and sometimes things even get a little feisty. But is it really a rivalry? Baseball already has some good rivalries with Red Sox/Yankees, Cubs/Cardinals, and Dodgers/Giants. But does the Sox/Cubs rivalry really matchup to those?

The answer is an easy no. What those previously mentioned rivalries have in common that the Chicago one doesn’t is of course that they play in the same league, same division, and play each other much more often. The teams see each other more, they can develop negative relationships more easily, and just naturally when you’re competing for the same division crown as the other guys, things get more competitive. That being said, I still think Sox/Cubs is a rivalry, just more of a fan service rivalry.

I have a lot of friends and even some family who are Cub fans. In all honestly its an obnoxious amount, especially since the Cub renaissance of the last four years or so. But of course, the Cubs are one of the most popular franchises in baseball all around the country anyways. It is for this exact reason that I love the Crosstown Classic so much! It is incredibly fun and competitive to watch a Cubs Sox game with someone who is a Cub fan. I love baseball in general but when you can be competitive with the guy next to you, it is an even more enjoyable experience for me.

The Sox are bad, like really bad. They are actually even worse than I thought they’d be and watching them can at times be incredibly frustrating. This is actually probably the worst Sox team I have seen in my lifetime. It just isn’t the Sox time and that is perfectly ok, hopefully the future will bring better things. But for the next three games I can watch a game and be excited when (more like if/doubtful) they do well. The Cubs are clearly a much better baseball team, but because baseball is crazy it is possible that the Sox take two of three in this series and that would be wonderful! I’d text all my friends who are Cub fans and ridicule them to my heart’s desire. They would say back “The sox suck,” and I would say “I don’t care, eat shit, Cubs suck, Go Sox!”

Looking back at their head to head competition is interesting. The Cubs were of course around first, but the Sox followed not to far afterwards. When Charles Comiskey decided to move his team to Chicago a law suit was actually filed against him by the then Cubs owner. Things obviously went the Sox way and they were allowed to stay. Comiskey even decided to name the team “The White Stockings” which was the original name of the Cubs, just to spite Cubs ownership. Many fans actually don’t know (or Cub fans try and forget) that the dearly beloved Harry Caray broadcasted for the White Sox before he ever did for the Cubs.

But onto their actual competitive play on the field. Prior to interleague play beginning in 1997 the Cubs and Sox had only played in exhibition games. Those don’t really matter so I won’t go into those. Oh actually, there was this one time where the heavily favored Cubs who won 115 games that year lost to the “Hitless Wonder” White Sox in the World Series. But I mean whatever right? It’s a World Series that was over 100 years ago. No Sox fan would ever bring up something that happened 100 years ago in a discussion like this. (or something that didn’t happen for over 100 years if you catch my drift)

Ok so actually on to the regular season history. As of May 9th, 2018, the Sox and Cubs have played each other 112 times in the regular season, with the Sox holding the edge 58-54. Which for little to no reason, makes me happy inside. There have been some very memorable meetings in the past 21 years between the two clubs. There is of course the time when actual biggest catching douchebag Michael Barret punched super loveable, don’t have a bad word to say about him, World Series champion catcher A.J. Pierzynski in the face. One might think this was because Pierzynski did something like super douchey, but in all reality the Sox were the champs at the time, the Cubs were awful, and Barret is a huge douche. Barret was a douche, have I said that yet? Moving on, there was that one-time Carlos Zambrano had to be separated from Derrek Lee in the dugout after being lit up by the Sox. In 2008 both the Sox and Cubs were in 1st place in their respective divisions when they met up for each series. This was really cool, and I believe is the only time this has happened. People were talking Chicago all World Series all summer long. This added even extra electricity to already very electric set of baseball games. Both teams of course went on to lose in the division series however. Sox losing in four, Cubs getting swept I might add. Besides that the really hasn’t been much to separate their games from any other on the schedule. There have been some great finishes though. I don’t exactly remember specifics, but I know Aramis Ramirez walked it off for the Cubs once, that same Pierzynksi dude hit a go-ahead homerun in the top of the 9th at Wrigley which followed with Cub fans throwing trash onto “beautiful” Wrigley field, as well as Carlos Lee hitting a walk off grand slam which I see tweeted out every single year.

Overall the Sox Cubs rivalry really isn’t a rivalry. The games don’t matter anymore than the others, they aren’t competing for anything that matters, and they may never even see each other again in the World Series. It is a fun experience for fans to compete for bragging rights, and great opportunity to talk shit to your friends when the Cubs lose the series even though the Sox are terrible. If you have never been to a Sox Cubs game, I strongly suggest it. It really is a unique baseball experience, and I would argue it’s the closest thing you can get to a playoff experience during the regular season. I am so glad its here, it’s one of my favorite times of the baseball season, and I’m glad it gives me something to look forward to in September when they meet again. And hey, hopefully by that time Kopech will be striking out Rizzo and Eloy will be hitting bombs off Quintana. Who knows though, maybe they Sox rebuild actually works and in 2020 we could be talking about that all Chicago World Series. Either way, enjoy the Crosstown Classic, I hope it never goes away. Go Sox!

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