US Open: Sharapova Cheats; Sevastova Beats

In what must be a sweet result for those who care about the game of tennis, Anastasija Sevastova beat Maria Sharapova Sunday in a showdown between a proven cheater and a truly original comeback player from Latvia.

It took 3 sets: 5-7, 6-4, 6-2. And Sharapova pulled out all her disreputable tricks in order to get past Sevastova. But this time, it didn’t work.

When the momentum was definitely turning against Sharapova – losing the second set – she pulled out her old “bathroom break” trick – the same trick she pulled against Halep in the first round when Halep had taken the second set.

Funny. How many top players pull that “bathroom break” shtick at such pivotal moments? And how many pull them when they just WON a set? Never.

Then, throughout the match as Sevastova attempted to serve Sharapova pulled the “wait, I’m turning my back to you while I gather myself” move. How many other players pull this stink move? Only the diva’s, like Sharapova. How many refs call them on this stink delay-of-game move as they are supposed to? None.

Then, in the decisive third set, Sharapova called a trainer to tape her finger causing another long delay.

The fact that all players on the tour know Sharapova pulls these tricks all the time and despise her for it goes unmentioned by announcers who forever fawn over the Maria Machine.

The Maria Meldonium Machine. Taking the same performance enhancement prescription drug that was favored by the cheating Russian Athletic Olympic Machine. For 10 years she took it Meldonium even though its manufacturer says it is not supposed to be taken longer than 6 months. An Rx that is not available anywhere in the world except Latvia. Why? Because no other reputable drug company wants to produce it. Which means Maria, for over 10 years, had a quack write prescriptions for this drug against its manufacturer’s own directives. And then had these drugs shipped across the ocean into the US where she’s lived for most of her adult life.


Isn’t it sweet that the feisty Sevastova, a Latvian, whooped Maria?

Sometimes, justice is served. By a feisty Latvian with a real attitude.

Congrats, Anastasija Sevastova!


Yes, US Olympic Athletes Got Waivers For Banned Drugs – It’s A Double Standard

That Russian hacker leak from WADA revealed medical documents from lots of athletes.

And it seems such esteemed news outlets like The New York Times are refusing to repeat any of that leaked information.

If this was Watergate do you think the NYT’s would be so shy and timid?

Apparently, the editors at the NYT’s are coloring the whole event as a spat of naughty hackers rather than a legitimate issue of whether WADA has created a double standard where Russian athletes are crushed for violations yet American stars are shielded with supposed “doctors notes” that allow them to use amphetamines (Simon Biles) and steroids (the Williams’ sisters).


Multiple Gold medalist Biles was given a waiver and allowed to use Ritalin for years for a supposed ADHD condition. Sure, people have ADHD. But Ritalin is speed, and it is one of the widest abused drugs in professional sports. The bottom line is: Ritalin improves athletic performance. That’s why it is banned.


Both Williams’ sisters had multi-year waivers for, among other drugs, prednisone, a steroid. No, it is not an anabolic steroid. It is a corticosteroid. But it is performance-enhancing and it is still banned.


So, maybe the Russians do have a point. Sure they cheated the bejeezus on a monstrous level. But does that mean other countries like the USA get to “game” the system allowing their athletes to ingest all sorts of banned drugs under the cover of flimsy doctor’s notes?

Really, whose doctors are you going to start trusting when it looks like everyone is cheating?

US Open: We Love Gael Monfils! The Zen Poet Of Tennis!

The tennis world is in a self-righteous outrage over France’s Gael Monfils. It seems the gatekeepers like John McEnroe and others didn’t care for Monfils performance in his semi-final loss against Novak Djokovich in which at times Monfils stood flat-footed for Novak’s serves. The New York US Open crowd – notoriously the worst tennis-worthy crowds in the Grand Slams – heartily booed disapprovingly.

Tsk, tsk.

For anyone who has followed Monfils in his long, colorful career we can only say, What did you expect? He’s the genius of the unexpected. He was getting trounced by the powerful Djokovich and so Gael went Zen. He decided to get inside Djok’s head. It worked. It worked enough to get Novak frustrated enough to rip his shirt on court as if he was the Incredible Hulk. It worked enough that Gael won the 3rd set. It just wasn’t enough to win the match.


We find it laughable that those who pretend to speak for the game of tennis condemn someone like Gael Monfils who has toiled in the middle ranks for well over a decade entertaining and thrilling crowds all over the world.

We find it equally laughable that a USTA player as personally reprehensible as Nick Kyrgios of Australia is promoted in tennis so wildly that he is featured on the cover of the New York Times Magazine, yet his own country of Australia finds him so demeaning that their Olympic Committee refused to allow Kyrgios to represent them in this past Summer Olympics.

That is the world of tennis. Where the Powers That Be try to crush Free Spirits like Gael Monfils.

And, also, where everyone forgets it was just in 2009 at the US Open when “the greatest tennis player in the world(sic)” threatened a small lineswoman with “I’ll F**cking take the ball and shove it down your f**cking throat!”

“The greatest?”

In the karmic terms we measure greatness, that’s laughable.


US Open: Give Us Announcer Mute Option During Broadcasts

Innovations drive corporate profits. It’s a given. During last year’s NCCA basketball broadcasts viewers were given the option to watch gamecasts with announcers from their home teams and it was wildly popular.

Just as in this miserable 2016 election year when we’ve had to listen to woefully inadequate media moderators, why should sports fans have to listen to the ignorant and ill-informed opinions of poorly chosen sports announcers?

Give sports fans the choice of simply watching the broadcast with only the athletes and ambient fan sound.

We’ve had enough already of this year’s US Open coverage and the dribbling childish rants of Brad Gilbert and others on ESPN that only detract from the enjoyment of a good tennis match. If you don’t want to hear one of the ever-present McEnroe brothers how about the option of just doing without?

And using the mute button is not an option if you want to hear the players, the fans’ reactions, the “smack!” of the racket making hard contact with the ball.

No, it’s time to give TV viewers a different, better option, and one that acknowledges choice. Because as viewers we are paying for this service and we deserve the choice of how we view these events – not to have the broadcasters shove them down our throats as they want us to consume them.

Some overseas Olympic broadcasters gave their viewers the option of watching events without obnoxious NBC commentators. Many stated how the beauty of competition was augmented without the obtrusive interjections of paid sports promoters.

It’s time for a change.

And it’s time for consumers to be in charge.


Wimbledon: Anna Wintour Picks Nose For ESPN

It should be no surprise to see the mummified high priestess of fashion Anna Wintour in Serena Williams’ spectator box on Monday.

But ESPN’s national viewing audience got creeped out when Wintour was caught in a full, deep nose pick, then a wipe on her own shoulder while the cameras were ostensibly focused on Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglu. This was during the first set between Williams and Kuznetsova.

Wintour is notorious for protecting her image and for crushing those in her employ who fail to do so. As editor of Vogue and head honcho of Conde’ Nast Publishing she is essentially The Masthead of All That Is High Fashion.

We were delighted to see the long-mummified Wintour exposed on national television picking the dust particles out of her prickly little breathing portholes.

We weren’t sure…but we thought we saw bits of papyrus fall out…


Knowing the power and reach of Wintour, she will no doubt next be seen on the tarmac of an airport somewhere amidst private jets having a meeting with ESPN heads to delete said footage.

Or having her good friend Bill Clinton do something like that.

Wimbledon Champ Bartoli Is Sick Anorexic, But HuffPost Thinks It’s Beautiful Self-Expression

We’ve always loved tennis great Marion Bartoli. We loved her intelligence. We loved her intense focus on the court. And we loved it even more when she won the Wimbledon title in 2013.

When she suddenly retired after that win everyone was surprised.

Now we’re shocked and surprised to see the recent pictures of her that show a clearly sick, anorexic and unhealthy Bartoli who very much needs some help.


What could be worse?

Many in the British press – including supposed feminists – are calling any concern over Bartoli’s condition “sexist” and throwing down the full weight of their damning gauntlets of condemnation toward any who see danger in Bartoli’s anorexic state.

The Huffington Post’s UK supposed “lifestyle” opinion-maker has the gall to give Bartoli a “You Go Girl!” thumbs up.

In fact, that HuffPost writer somehow brings her twisted intellect around to calling it “body-shaming” when fans show concern over Bartoli’s physical condition. She says:

“Let’s get one thing straight, if you write a tweet about someone’s physique, no matter what their shape or size, it’s not a sign of you showing your concern about their health or wellbeing.

It’s body-shaming, it’s dangerous and it needs to stop.”

– Rachel Moss (UK’s HuffPost)

Under such logic streams, this shrink-brained HuffPost writer Moss would see a junkie in the gutter  injecting smack in their veins, smile wistfully, and congratulate said addict on their alternate “lifestyle choice.”


Americans should know that British women have taken the strangely impolitic issue of  “body-shaming” and elevated it to the same level as murder and genocide.

It should be pointed out that the newly elected mayor of London just banned posters of women in bikinis in public transport areas of the city because images of women in bikinis were deemed body-shaming by their very nature.

(Many men thought posters of David Beckham should be banned because they felt body-shamed in the face of Beckham’s physique. Yes, they had a valid point.)

Yes. This body-shaming thing is a contrived issue created out of the newly-minted perceived slights of those who can see no farther than their own navels, those who forever are looking for the slings and arrows tossed their way that hurt their feelings and keep them from developing into whole human beings.

That is, spoiled coddled brats.


Marion Bartoli, we hope you regain your center and your health. During your career there were those who doubted your talents – and those cruel ones who critisized your looks. But there were millions more who always loved and supported you, and still do.