Tour de Drama

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard | 7.4.2017

During the final sprint in stage 4 of the Tour de France, world champion Peter Sagan and Mark Cavendish were driving to the finish line when Cavendish went into the barrier and was run over by cyclists behind him after it appeared that Sagan nudged Cavendish causing him to fall. At least that is the way the Tour sees it and now both riders are out of the race but for different reasons.

First Cavendish. He took a hard line with no room for error and it didn’t work out. He has a fractured shoulder blade and a nasty cut on his hand. He is out of the race due to injury.

Sagan, the five time Green jersey winner, was initially relegated to 115th place among other penalties but then the Tour changed it’s mind and disqualified him from the race entirely. Sagan denied the claim that he elbowed/nudged/winged Cavendish into the barrier but the race organizers see it differently and have made their decision in the name or ‘rider safety’.

Social media is a buzz about this. While some see a clear elbow by Sagan others point out that Sagan does not need to give a rider behind him a clear path and that Cavendish took a very dangerous if not reckless line.

The bottom line is this, Sagan and Cavendish are out. Two popular cyclists out of cycling’s biggest event of the year. It also means that the race for the Green jersey is wide open. This will either make the 2017 edition of the Tour de France incredible interesting or it will forever have yet another asterisk next to the results.

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The Sunday: Crashes, Tirades and Rapping

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard


Winner

Chris Froome won his 3rd Tour de France today despite crashing multiple times during the tour and he even had to punch a fan to prevent another crash. It was a hard fought race and a well deserved victory.

Kreis Is Back

Jason Kreis NYCFCJason Kreis is back on the sidelines in MLS. This time with Orlando City. Kreis was a prolific scorer during his playing days. As a manager he took Real Salt Lake to two MLS Cup Finals, winning one and of course was unceremoniously sacked by NYCFC after one season. He is arguably one of the best coaches in all of MLS and this is a major coup for Orlando City.

We Knew Who He Was

Former Minnesota Vikings and Arizona Cardinals head coach Dennis (Denny Green) passed away this week at the age of 67. He was the second African-American head coach in the modern era with an overall record of 113-94. A lot of people might remember his rant after losing to the Chicago Bears while in charge of the Cardinals.

Fashion

Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale was scratched from his scheduled start on Saturday for apparently cutting up the throwback jerseys the team was supposed to wear. In other news, the Fresno Grizzles rocked the Three Amigos gear. Can you imagine what Sale would have done to those?

Harbaugh

Yeah….

What to Watch: Fri. 7/22 – Sun. 7/24

All times are Pacific.

Friday July 22nd

Cycling Tour de FranceTour de France – 4am NBCSN: A mean ass mountain stage and one of the last real races of the tour.

San Francisco Giants at New York Yankees – 4pm MLBN: The Giants have lost five in a row and now head to the Bronx to take on the Yankees. Can the Giants ace Madison Bumgarner stop the skid?

Saturday July 23rd

Portland Timbers vs Los Angeles Galaxy – 12:30pm ESPN: The Timbers are starting to come together but the Galaxy are still a few points ahead of them in the standings.

Colorado Rapids vs FC Dallas – 4pm MLS LIVE: The two best teams in all of MLS as far as points go square off in the Mile High city.

New York Mets at Miami Marlins – 4pm MLB.TV: Big game in NL East and a heck of a pitching matchup as Jacob deGrom faces off against Jose Fernandez.

Sunday July 24th

Tour de France – 7am NBCSN: The victory lap around the Champs – Elysees.

New York Red Bulls vs NYCFC – 10am FOX: The Derby actually matters. NYCFC leads the east but the Red Bulls are only a few points back.

The Brickyard 400 – Noon NBC: It’s one of the biggest races NASCAR has all year. Added bonus, Jeff Gordon comes out of retirement to fill in for Dale Jr.

The Sunday: Selling, Retiring And Owning

SOLD!

The UFC was sold for $4 billion this week. The weekend after UFC 200 which did lord knows how many pay-per-view buys. Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta bought the UFC for some $2 million many moons ago. They will make a pretty good return on their investment. Dana White will remain as President of the organization and he will add to that this week by speaking at the Republican National Convention.

The Legend Retires

Tim Duncan called it a career this week in the only Tim Duncan can, very low key. All he did was write a letter and posted it on the San Antonio Spurs web site.

Duncan

Saban vs Finebaum

Alabama head coach Nick Saban may go down as the greatest college football coach in history. In order to do that you have not only have to be a great coach but you also have to be able to own the media. Saban can does that and did it again at the SEC Media Days. A mic was hot later and you can hear the the ESPN panel pointing this out.

 

Tour de Run?

It’s becoming a very odd Tour de France. While the stages have been exciting, sometimes they have been exciting for other reasons. Fans are on top of the riders at points during the race and when that happens that means that the motorcycles carrying cameras and photographers. Well a bottle neck occurred this week and caused a crash. This meant that leader Chris Froome was without a bike and just started running until his team car could get to him.

 

This..

France may have lost to Portugal but man is this a cool shot.

EURO FINAL 2016

Or this….

Catches

It’s never too early for ‘Catch of the Year’ nominees.

 

Put Out The Fire

Someone tried to put out the Olympic torch with a fire extinguisher. This pretty much sums up the Rio Olympics before it even gets started.

 

What to Watch: Fri. 7/15 – Sun. 7/17

All times are Pacific.

Friday July 15th 

The British Open – 1am Golf Channel: Lefty got off to a hot start shooting a 63 to put him -8. Martin Kaymer and Patrick Reed are tied for second but only three strokes back. Don’t worry, coverage goes until 1pm.

Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees – 4pm MLBN: Baseball is back from the break and there is no better to start it off but by having the Red Sox vs the Yankees from Yankee Stadium.

Hamilton Tiger Cats at Montreal Alouettes – 4:30pm ESPN3: Remember how the Al’s had a bunch of quarterbacks in camp? We’ll they are already starting their backup, Rakeem Cato.

Saturday July 16th 

The British Open – 4am NBC: Third round from Royal Toon in Scotland.

Tour de France – 5am NBCSN: It’s a 208km run with a couple of climbs. Lets’ see if Chris Froome ditches the bike and just runs it.

Texas Rangers at Chicago Cubs – 11:20am MLBN: This could legitimately be a World Series Preview. Yu Darvish takes the mound for the Rangers against Jason Hammel for the Cubs.

Kansas City Royals at Detroit Tigers – 4pm FS1: The defending World Series champion Royals are seven games back of the division leading Cleveland Indians. They are only a half game back of the Tigers which makes this series hugely important.

Sunday 17th

The British Open – 4am NBC: Final round of the 145th Open.

Portland Timbers vs Seattle Sounders – Noon FOX: While both are not where they’d thought they’d be at this point in the season, it is still the best rivalry in MLS. The Sounders will be without Clint Dempsey in a game where they have to get at least a point.

Montreal Impact vs NYCFC – 2pm ESPN: Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard square off for the first time in MLS. The once Chelsea teammates are now battling for position in the eastern conference. NYCFC is in the lead due in small part because of Lampard’s recent form. They sit four points in front of the Impact.

Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees – 5pm ESPN: The rubber match and it’s David Price vs Masahiro Tanaka.

The Sunday: Hate And The Changes It Brings

Compiled by Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard


The Hate

To say that there was a lot of hate on the internet with Kevin Durant signing with the Golden State Warriors this week would be putting it mildly. None the less, KD is a Warrior and will share the floor with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala. Not a bad way to go.

Catches

Plenty of unintended impressive catches this past week….

The Roughriders Ricky Collins kept his eye on the ball.

…and three points for Buster Posey!

…and some that were intended and were just massive failures. Like this San Francisco Giants fan who tried to catch a foul ball with a tray full of food and booze.

 

Out of the Way

Crowding the road and running along with the cyclists is as much a part of the Tour de France as the cycling. However sometimes people can put themselves and the riders in jeopardy. So the riders have to fight back like Chris Froome did.

At It Again

It may only be the MLS regular season but don’t tell that to Tim Howard who came up big last night for the Colorado Rapids against Vancouver.

 

Brown Out

Legendary basketball coach Larry Brown has left yet another job. What’s not at all shocking about this is that he made a team relevant (SMU) only to have sanctions and suspensions come down on the program. Cause that has never happened before with Brown.

 

The Ins & Outs of UFC 200

Being a former UFC employee, I know first hand how exhausting an event can much less three in three days capped by one of the biggest shows in the organizations history.

Add to that the headlining fight on the card falling apart mid week only to be saved by the greatest fighter off all time (Anderson Silva) stepping in on two days notice.

Yes, the employees of the UFC deserve a few much needed days off. Oh wait, there is another fight on Wednesday night in Sioux Falls, SD. Sorry guys, back to work.

What To Watch: Fri. 7/1 -Sun. 7/3

All times are Pacific.

Friday July 1st

Cleveland Indians at Toronto Blue Jays – 10am MLB.tv: The Tribe have been on fire. So much so that they are the hottest team in baseball. Jays are tough at home and it is Canada Day.

Wales vs Belgium – Noon ESPN2: Wales is still trucking in the Euro 2016 but this might be too big of a hill to climb.

Chicago Cubs at NY Mets -4pm MLBN: Two playoff teams from a year ago and by looks of it this year they’ll be back in the playoffs again. Hammel goes for the Cubs while deGrom goes for the Mets.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers at Calgary Stampeders – 7pm ESPN2: Both teams are coming off of embarrassing losses in week one but for completely different reasons. Both should make big strides this week.

Real Salt Lake vs DC United – 7:30pm UniMas: This is a solid match on paper. The X factor will be how DC United adjust to playing in ‘the fortress’, also known as Rio Tinto Stadium.

Saturday July 2nd

BikingTour de France – 3:30am NBCSN: Stage 1 of the 103rd Tour de France gets underway from Mont-Saint-Michel and ends at Utah Beach.

Germany vs Italy – Noon ESPN2: I am sure that there is some sort World War II joke here but we’ll just leave it at this…..

Apparently when you win a World Cup and embarrass Brazil in the process you can smell yourself during a match in France.

Montreal Impact vs New England Revolution – 2:30pm MLS.TV: The Revs can tie the Impact in point with a win but that is easier said than done when you have to travel to the great white north.

Nascar Coca-Cola 400 – 4:15pm NBC: Primetime racing from Daytona.

Sunday July 3rd

Tour de France – 5am NBCSN: Stage 2. No biggie, just one of the toughest races in all of sports.

NYCFC vs NY Red Bulls – 9am ESPN: A New York Derby match for your holiday weekend. These teams are only separated by a point but the last time they got together at Yankee Stadium the Red Bulls piled on the goals in route to a 7-0 win. Expect things to be different this time.

France vs Iceland – Noon ESPN: Oh c’mon, you know you want to see the miracle run by a nation of less than 400k continue. Go Iceland!

What to Watch Sat. 7/25-Sun. 7/26

All times are Pacific.

REMOTE-contrast

Saturday July 25th

USMNT vs Panama – 1pm FS2: The disappointing third place game for two teams who expected to be playing in the final.

Washington Nationals at Pittsburgh Pirates – 4pm MLB.TV: Two possible playoff teams and two good pitchers (Gonzalez vs Burnett).

FC Dallas vs Portland Timbers – 6pm MLS LIVE: FC Dallas leads the West but Portland has turned it around and are only three points back in the standings.

UFC on FOX – 5pm FOX: TJ Dillashaw vs Renan Barao square off for the second time. Meisha Tate vs Jennifer Eye and the always exciting Joe Lauzon vs Takanori Gomi.

Sunday July 26th

Tour de France – 7am NBCSN: Final leg of this years Tour. It’s really just a celebration leg but it’s fun all the same.

NASCAR Brickyard 400 – 12:30pm NBCSN: One of the better NASCAR races to watch this season. Jeff Gordon has owned this place. He is looking for his 6th career win at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Gold Cup Final: Jamaica vs Mexico -4:30pm FS1: We usually expect Mexico to be in this situation but not Jamaica. Can they keep up their winning ways and go home with a trophy?

What To Watch Fri. 7/17- Sun. 7/19

All times are Pacific.

Friday July 17th

The Open – 1am ESPN: The second round of the Open from St Andrews.

Tour de France – 6am NBCSN: Stage 13 could be a good day for some riders to make their move.

BC Lions at Saskatchewan Roughriders – 7:00pm ESPN3: The Riders need a win bad. Being at home on a Friday night should help.

Saturday July 18th

The Open – 4am ESPN: Third round action from St Andrews.

UFC Fight Night – 10am FS1: The UFC in Scotland for the first time. Michael Bisping headlines but the fight of the night should be Ross Pearson vs Evan Dunham.

LA Dodgers at Washington Nationals – 1pm FS1: These two teams could be meeting later in the playoffs.

USMNT vs Cuba – 2pm FOX: Quarterfinals are under way in the Gold Cup and the US made some roster moves. Let’s see if they help against a team they should beat.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers at Calgary Stampeders – 4pm ESPN3: Well the defending Grey Cup champion Stampeders sure haven’t been boring this year.

 

Sunday July 19th

The Open – 4am ESPN: The final round.

Tour de France -5am NBCSN: Stage 15 in southern France.

Mexico vs Costa Rica – 4:30pm FS1: Arguably the best matchup of the Quarterfinals of the Gold Cup.

Boston Red Sox at LA Angels – 5pm ESPN: Get away game and an opportunity to see some of the better ball players in the game like Mike Trout and Dustin Pedroia.

The Sunday: Leaps, Bounds, Explosions & Crashes

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard

Whatever It Takes

Well the fact of the matter is that it was stupid move but no one ever became a legend by playing it safe. On Friday night a SF Giants fan (we presume) leaped over the railing and into McCovey Cove for a Joe Panik home run ball. While not the smartest move, it was still awesome.

 

Rumblin’

Ottawa defensive lineman Zack Evans intercepted a pass and went 65 yards for a touchdown (or as they say in the CFL, a ‘major score’). Best part, he held the ball high and tight with three points of pressure. Dr. Lou would be proud.

 

No More Fireworks For NFL Players

During the next round of contract negotiations you can bet that there will be a ‘no handling fireworks’ provision. This is because two NFL players lost finger(s) this past 4th of July setting off fireworks. Tampa Bay cornerback CJ Wilson lost two fingers while NY Giants star Jason Pierre-Paul had one amputated. Pierre-Paul may suffer a little more because after the incident, the Giants pulled a contract offer worth $60 million.

 

Crash

Last week saw two spectacular crashes. The first happened late Sunday night at the finish of the Coke Zero 400. Fans were hurt but amazingly driver Austin Dillion walked away from the crash.

The next day in Stage 3 of the Tour de France, a massive pile up occurred which ended the race for six riders including contender Fabian Cancellara