#1. Manny Pacquiao Is The Greatest Boxer of our Generation - Honestly, its not even close. I sat at my buddy Doc's house party this Saturday amped up to watch my favorite fighter Miguel Cotto take his swings against Pac-man. I had talked myself into truly believing that Cotto had a serious shot against Manny. You know, he had more size, fought other speed fighters, done well against lefties, reasonable thoughts that could make me believe what I felt in my heart. My prediction was that my mind says Pacquiao, and my heart says Cotto. I can't go against my heart. Well...that's why your brain is up there, use it. Pacquiao walked through all of Cotto's punches, with ease and made Cotto's face look like ground beef. Pacquiao now has SEVEN titles in SEVEN different weight classes. That my friends, is unprecedented. I had a debate with friends immediately after the fight and I declared that Manny is the greatest fighter of our generation and I would lay $100 with anyone on a bet taking Manny over Floyd. I know a lot of you want to believe that Roy Jones outclasses Manny but honestly its not even a debate.
While Roy Jones was dominant, he wasn't even as dominant as Bernard Hopkins. And yes, Roy Jones did move up in weight to get more titles, he didn't beat the LEGENDS that Pacquiao beat. Pacquiao has now beaten Erik Morales, Marco Antonio Barrera, Juan Manuel Marquez, Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton and Miguel Cotto. He has one more fight that he must fight, and that is Floyd Mayweather. Who is the only other fighter of the last 25 years that can lay claim to the greatest ever, and I'm telling you now...that might be the greatest fight of our lifetime. What Ali-Frazier was, what Ali-Foreman was, what Leonard-Hearns was, what Joe Louis-Rocky Marciano was...I'm so serious right now. Mark your calendars.
2. Today's Obituraries - R.I.P To Sideshow Bob - Anderson "Sideshow Bob" Varejao, 27, passed away on November 12th, 2009. He was born on September 28th, 1982 in Santa Teresa, Espírito Santo, Brazil. Varejão was selected by the Orlando Magic in the second round of the 2004 NBA Draft (30th overall) and traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers on July 23, 2004. He became a regular contributor for the Cavs, exciting fans and earning the nickname "Wild Thing" because of his wild hair and energetic and relentless style of play.
However, in a "Flash" his light became dark as he was caught in a crossfire as what some witnesses could only describe as "DWade" came down the middle of the lane in an attempt to score on a dunk. Varejao's untimely decision to attempt to block DWade's dunk attempt ended up being a massacre of multiplied proportions. Varejao miscalculated his heart and guile with Wade's superior athleticism and killer instinct, as he then emasculated him by rising up into the rafters and delivering a ferocious thunderclap of a dunk on top of Sideshow Bob's head. Making things worse, Varejao careened into the stanchion, hitting his head on the post and had his feet kick up in the air "real real high" witnesses said. Mr. Wade fled the scene as he was heard yelling "That's how you do it!" repeatedly. Remember remember the 12th of November, as we put on our Sideshow Bob wigs and remember the massacre of Varejao.
#3. Brandon Jennings Is Shocking The World - I want all the kids, parents, and pundits of sport to all hear me when I say this. You go to "school" to gain general knowledge and prepare yourself for the real world. Now, how much "school" a person needs is on a person-to-person basis. Bill Gates didn't finish college, Steve Jobs, Rachael Ray, Richard Branson, Henry Ford, Walt Disney, Michael Dell, Mary Kay Ash, and...LeBron James all never either finished college or even went to college. As a matter of fact, every great athlete who leads their sport outside of 2 (Golf - Tiger Woods, Football - Peyton Manning) didn't go to college. See LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Alex Rodriguez, Alex Ovechkin, Cristiano Ronaldo, Jimmie Johnson, Phil Ivey, etc. etc. etc.
So seeing that Brandon Jennings did it his own way, and seeing that he went off for 55 points against Golden State, should make all of of us believe that you've got to find your own way. Sometimes being conventional means you are afraid to be great, to be savvy, of criticism, or to fail. You can't be afraid to fail. So stop preventing our young and talented kids from pursuing their dreams. Let them be great.
#4. To The Media, Please Stop Talking About Notre Dame - Aside from Golden Tate (who might be the 2010's version of Steve Smith, Panthers edition) please stop talking about them. Jimmy Claussen is not a Heisman Trophy candidate, Charlie Weis is not a great coach, and Notre Dame as a program is not relevant. No one cares about them except for Notre Dame fans, and you continually get their hopes up by talking about them all the time. Notre Dame would be better served laying under the radar and waiting in the weeds until they built themselves up again.
#5. Bill Belichick Has Nuts, and Its About Time - As someone who believes in being unconventional, I've been waiting for someone to do what Belichick and the Patriots did against the Colts last night. You are up 6 points with 2 minutes to go and its 4th and 2. You have version 1A of the greatest QB of our generation in your huddle in Tom Brady and a tremendous offense against a Colts defense whom you know you can make plays against. What's the alternative? Giving the ball to version 1b of the greatest QB of our generation with 2 minutes to drive the ball and beat you. I'd take my chances with my team and the ball any day before giving the ball to Peyton. Yeah, some of the pundits (did you hear Trent Dilfer going hard on the Patriots? Jeezus, how much hate juice did you drink last night?) would call his decision a play out of Madden, but let me tell you something... every great Madden player WOULD DO JUST THAT and win the game. If you are that good, just like the Patriots are, you already know that you can get the 2 yards (which New England looked like they truly did) and win the game without giving the other team the ball. The difference is that if you fail in Madden you have no one to answer to. Belichick has the entire nation talking bad about him. Not I, not Ed The Sports Fan. Tremendous job sir, and a tremendous game by both teams...I have a suspicion that we'll see them play again in about 2 months.
Unsportsmanlike Conduct: The Rapid Turnaround of the Hard to Knock Cincinnati Bengals and Cincinnati Bearcats - Living in Cincinnati has been truly amazing in the capacity of being a football fan. From hearing about the utter disrespect that the state of Ohio has given to the Bearcats of not being a legitimate football program and to the ineptitude that the Bengals have been for numerous years...it is truly amazing to see what these two teams are doing this year. Let me be clear about a couple of things, Brian Kelly will be wooed like never before to leave Cincinnati after this year REGARDLESS of how the year finishes and I will totally respect the decision if he leaves and gets more money. However, understand that he has the opportunity to not only possess the best college football team in the state of Ohio (yeah I said it) he has an opportunity to create a dynasty in the Big East like Miami did in previous generations. Take that statement with a grain of salt.
As for the Bengals...well, you all witnessed it yesterday afternoon. They are about as real as it gets in NFL standards. An unrelenting run game (now looking like a 2-headed monster with Benson and Bernard Scott), an explosive pass game with the ever mercurial Carson Palmer and ever loquacious Esteban Chad OchoCinco Johnson...and more importantly a defense that is as stout and dynamic as I've seen in a long time. They get after it, period. Here's another profound statement that you all will love to argue with me about, Leon Hall and Jonathan Joseph make the best cornerback tandem in the NFL. They don't get beat often, they are physical, and they make play after play after play.
It could be a magical couple of months in the Queen City, and I'm lucky to be a part of it. Can I get a Who Dey?
THOUGHTS ON THE WEEKEND? AM I NUTS OR WHAT?