While Brooks and the rest of the SbB crew worked hard to get you the very latest on the Steve McNair murder, Sunday turned out to be a pretty big day for three of the world’s biggest athletes — who just happened to have co-starred in the “Citizen Kane” of awkward athlete endorsement campaigns.
That’s right, now that Thierry Henry has been booted from the Gillette posse (at least in America), all three razor-wielding superstars had pretty huge days.
First, Roger Federer made history by winning his 15th Grand Slam title in a crazy five-set win at Wimbledon over Andy Roddick. Pete Sampras was in the audience, taking in the match as only Sampras could — puking his guts out on the sideline looking bored out of his gourd. The 30-game fifth set was the longest in Slam history by a full 10 games. The final game was the only time Federer broke Roddick’s serve the entire match. Only Roddick’s inability to put away four set points in a second-set tiebreak kept him from pulling off the huge upset.
As Federer was accepting his trophy, Tiger Woods was getting ready to tee off in the final round at the AT&T National, which he hosts. I’m not sure I understand the “host” thing, is that like when Heidi and Spencer “host” a party at PURE? He started the day in a tie with defending champion Anthony Kim, but soon found himself needing to keep up with Hunter Mahan, who started well back but fired a 62 to zoom all the way to the top of the leaderboard. Tiger drained a 20-footer on the 16th hole to take the lead, and he got to the clubhouse with two easy pars to wrap up his 68th PGA Tour win. And he interviewed himself afterward. I have to give him credit, though, as it was the first time the questions in a Tiger interview were as boring as the answers.
Jeter got more votes than anyone else in the AL, but is joined in the starting lineup by just one other Yankee — first baseman Mark Teixeira. A-Rod is nowhere to be seen, with Evan Longoria getting the starting nod instead. Josh Hamilton was voted into the starting lineup despite missing all of June with an injury, and this year’s recipient of the Lance Carter Memorial “Who?” Award is Oakland reliever Andrew Bailey, who is a fine pitcher but a guy even baseball fans would be hard pressed to tell you anything about. And while it looks like manager Joe Maddon pulled some homerism by adding Jason Bartlett, Carl Crawford, and Ben Zobrist to the team, all three of those guys are having huge years. And yes, if you’re scoring at home, Zobrist is the last All-Star ever, alphabetically speaking. The other big story is that of 42-year-old Tim Wakefield, who surprisingly has never been an All-Star until now. And congrats to the Royals for producing an actual All-Star this year, rather than their usual token “we gotta put someone on the team” guy.
The NL team is headlined by Albert Pujols, who received the second-most votes ever (only Ken Griffey Jr. got more, in 1994). At age 37, Raul Ibanez is an All-Star for the first time, and has been voted in as a starter. Unfortunately, it looks like he’s probably not going to be able to play. Nor is fellow outfielder Carlos Beltran. That means that reserves Hunter Pence and Brad Hawpe are likely to be out there when the game starts. No true no-name on the roster, as even Pittsburgh’s representative — Freddy Sanchez — is fairly deserving of his spot.
• If you click on only one link today, read this story in the L.A. TIMES about Zac Sunderland, a 17-year-old kid who is nearing the end of a solo circumnavigation of the world on a sailboat. Pirates, broken sails on the open seas, armed police escorts in New Guinea. It’s safe to say he had a more eventful year than the rest of us.
• OK, there was something called the “Junior World Football Championships” going on for the last week, and you’re not going to believe this — but the USA won. Shocking, considering our boys had to take down the likes of France, Mexico, and Canada (which they did by a cumulative score of 174-3). Next time, in an effort to even the playing field and give other countries a fighting chance, the U.S. is just going to send Washington State’s football team instead (they might be able to beat Sweden).
Does the name Hope Dworaczyk ring a bell? (Or give you a headache from trying to spell or pronounce her last name?) She’s the aspiring model Jason Kidd turned to after his nasty divorce from wife Joumana. But after supposedly knocking her up, Jason gave up Hope and started messing around with Danish model May Anderson - until Kidd heard she was lounging around with Lindsay Lohan.
Now Jason is apparently back with Ms. Dworaczyk. And by looking at her latest spread in Playboy, I would never want to give up Hope again, either. She’s featured in this month’s issue decked out in a skimpy Mavericks-eque outfit. How skimpy is it? There’s no clothing at all - just body paint.
Much like Bill Murray’s character in “Lost in Translation,” many celebrities think that the embarrassing commercials they do in foreign countries won’t see the light of day, only to see it pop up on the Internet. The same theory seems to apply to foreign athletes, who have a tendency to give extremely candid interviews to the media in their home country without thinking that it will see the light of day in the U.S.
Devin Harris and Jason Kidd will never be able to do anything without being compared to the other. That’s on the court, as well as off it. Remember when Kidd traded in killjoy ex-wife Joumana Kidd for bikini model Hope Dworaczyk? Harris has one-upped him, dating a girl who would be overdressed in a bikini.
Here’s a refresher, originally from the ARIZONA REPUBLIC:
“Last summer, we stayed at the Wynn (resort) for a lifetime, close to three weeks,” Kidd said. “We met at a banquet, we got to talking, and she really understands the game. I told her I’d make a deal with her, that if we won the gold medal, I’d give it to her. She thought I was kidding. But I told her I had one already, and the way they treated us at the Wynn, it was the least I could do.”
So now that he’s got the goods, is Jason all set to hand it over to Elaine? Read more…
We all knew the U.S. Men’s Basketball Team enjoyed its stay in China. Their enthusiastic post-medal celebration gave that much away. But who knew Jason Kidd enjoyed his time this much?
The aging U.S. point guard — now fully entering the twilight of his career — has waved goodbye to American shoe companies. Instead, he’ll endorse Chinese shoe company Peak, which is presumably paying him an incredibly large sum to land a name of his stature. Read more…
Dan Bickley has some very weird news today out of Beijing. The ARIZONA REPUBLIC columnist (via AZ SPORTS HUB) reports that Jason Kidd told him he will give his (sure) Gold Medal away to the wife of a Vegas casino owner.
(Joumana Be Kiddin’ Me!)
More specifically, Elaine Wynn. She’s the wife of billionaire Vegas casino developer Steve Wynn.
Now, if this were Charles Barkley, I think we’d all know the reason why. With Kidd, it’s going to hard to pin down.
So does Kidd own the Wynns money? Is Mrs. Wynn the sufferer of a terminal disease? Is Kidd paying off a debt incurred by some NBA Wives Charity event? No, no and no (apparently). Read more…