The Year in Sports • 2021

A Stream-of-Consciousness Recap of Athletic Highlights

Posted In: Sports, Local Sports, National Sports,   From Issue 923   By: Richard Curry

16th December, 2021     0

The gift that keeps on giving: Matt Stafford & the Detroit Lions. This time on Thanksgiving, the Texans won 41-25. Deshaun Watson: 17/25, 318 yards, & 4 TD’S. Nolan Ryan & Bob Feller each had 9 career one hit ball games. 11/28/2020: The Lions fired their GM & Coach (13-29-1), they should also have fired its players.  Forever Red Wings: Gordie Howe 25 Years, Steve Yzerman 23 years, Alex Delvecchio 24 years, & Nick Lidstrom 20 years.

The Tampa Lightning signed Mikhail Sergachev for 3 years at $14.4 Million (A steal).  College Football’s top 4 in November: Alabama, Notre Dame, Clemson, & Ohio State.  Hockey’s past: Dit Clapper (Boston Bruins) is the first NHL player to play 20 seasons. One of only 2 to be an All-Star at forward & defense. First Hall of Famer to be living at the time of his induction.  He won 3 Stanley Cups, died of a stroke at age 70. His family saved his Boston Tigers (Minor League) jersey logo & framed It, it’s now in my collection.

Sarah Fuller (Kicker) became the 1ST girl to play Division One Football. She played for the 0-7 Vanderbilt team. In her first game Vany lost to Missouri 41-0.  No Defense football: UCF 58 USF 46. USF finished the season at 1-8. The Liberty Flames beat U Mass 45-0. They are 9-1 & rated for the 1st time ever.  

The U of M lost to a 0-5 Penn State team: 27-17 to go 2-4.  Chris Nikic, became the 1st Down Syndrome person to finish a Iron Man Triathlon: 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride, & 26.2 marathon. It took him 16 plus hours.

“IRON MIKE” Tyson (54) fought Roy Jones Jr (51), it ended mercifully in a draw. Lou Holtz got the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Donald Trump. Lou said Trump was the best President in his life time.  Lou was 100-30-2 at Notre Dame & won a National Championship with a 12-0 team in 1988. Holtz was 249-132-7 in 33 College football seasons. His assistant coaches (25 in all) went on to be head coaches in the pros & college. His wife passed from cancer on July 1st, 2020.

The Pittsburgh Steelers started the season at 11-0 (WOW), then lost the next one to Washington.  Jim Ryun got the Medal of Freedom. Jim” I will tell you it is one of the greatest honors & privileges of my life to represent this amazing country & represent the stars & stripes on my chest while racing. Jim ran the mile in 3:51.3 & the Two Mile: 8;25.2.

Dan Gable was awarded the Medal of Freedom. A great wrestler, 117-1 @ Iowa State (In High School he won 64 straight times), won the ’72 Olympics, as a coach at Iowa he won 15 NCAA titles, 12 of his athletes became Olympians & Dan coached in 5 Olympics. Dick Allen passed at 78. Should have been in the H.O.F. 7X All-Star, ’72 MVP, ’64 Rookie of the Year, 2X HR. Champ, .292 BA, 351 HRS, 1119 RBI’S,1845 Hits, 1099 Runs, & played on 6 different teams.

Ekaterina Alexandrovskaya, Russian figure skater killed her herself at age 20. Today’s best female figure skater is Alina Zagitova from Russia. She is the 2018 Russian National Champion, 2018 Olympic Champion, 2018 European National Champion, & the 2017-18 Grand Prix Champion. She is 18 & 5’ 3” of beautiful.

SPORTS DEATHS: Herb Adderley, Green Bay great passed at 81. Rafer Johnson,1960 Decathlon Gold Medal winner passed at 86. His brother Jimmy is in the Football H.O.F. The Michigan- Ohio State football game canceled because of COVID-19, Great news for Jim Harbaugh. Tom Yewcic, two sport star All-American at MSU, who is the only man to win a Rose Bowl & MVP of a College World Series. Passed at age 88.

TOTAL FARCE OF THE YEAR: BEN & JERRY’S new item “Colin Kaepernick flavor ice cream, it must come with nuts…Too stupid. Army beat Navy 15-0, Trump was there. The Cleveland Indians are dropping their name: STUPID. Tampa’s Tom Brady said: “No way in hell I’m ever playing football in the North East.”

The NFL putts BLM names on the back of their football helmets. It’s time to honor the police, fireman, & military.

Golf Hottie for 2021: Golfer Lucy Robson. Florida was upset by L.S.U. 37-34. The L.S.U. QB was Max Johnson, a Sophomore, he is 18 years-old, 6’5’ 218 pounds, & son of the Tampa Buc’s Super Bowl Champion QB Brad Johnson. The kid was 21/36, 239 yards, & 3 TD’S.  Alabama football again had the top recruiting class, getting 4 of the top 10. Nick Saban strikes again. His record at Bama is 162-23, and he makes $8.6 million a year. Basketball player Giannis Antetokourmpo signed for 5 years. He got $228.2 MillionOMG STUPID MONEY.

Tom Brady & his Tampa Buc’s were down 17-0 at the half in Atlanta. They came back to win 31-27, Brady was 31/45, 390 yards, & 2 T.D.’S. The Ladies U.S. Open was won by A.L. Kim from South Korea with a -3, & she won 1 Million. Amy Olson of the U.S.A. finished 2nd with Jin Young Ko (South Korea) ,  & $487,286.00 each.

A Wayne Gretzky rookie card sold for $1.29 Million. 26.2 Records: Woman: 2:14:04. Men’s: 2:01L:39. I once ran 12 miles in 2 hours when I was 35, I practiced for 3 days. Kevin Greene, HOF’ER passed at 58. He was number 3 in All-Time in sacks. Phil Niekro, HOF, famous knuckle ball pitcher passed at age 81. He won 318 games & had 3342 K’S. He managed the Colorado Silver Bullets (ALL GIRL BASEBALL TEAM) for 4 years from 1994 to 1997. Ranger Goalie Henrik Lundqvist had open heart surgery. The Rose Bowl was played in Texas for the 1st time. Ohio State beat Clemson 49-28. Alabama beat Notre Dame 31-14.

In College football you win with a Offense Line: Alabama: Alex Leatherwood: 6’6” 312 LBS, Deonte Brown: 6’4” 350 LBS, Landon Dickerson: 6’6” 325 LBS, Emil Ekiyor: 6’3” 324 LBS, & Evan Neal: 6’7” 360 LBS. Over & Out: The Lions ended up at 5-11. They have sucked since 1957 (63 Years of awful). The Heisman Trophy winner was DeVonta Smith of Alabama.

The United States hockey team shut out Canada 2-0 to win the World Junior Hockey Championship. Spencer Knight (Florida Panther draft pick). Jim Harbaugh signed for 5 more years at the U of M. He is 49-22, but 0-5 vs Ohio State. Tommy Lasorda passed at age 93, he saw many a Loon games in Midland. He managed the Dodgers for 21 years & two World Series titles. Tom Brady became the oldest QB to throw a Playoff T.D, in beating Washington. The  Cleveland Browns beat the Steelers for the 1st time in forever & in a  playoff game: 48 to 37 (85 PIONTS).

Bill Belichick turned down Donald Trump’s Medal of Freedom. This same fool works for an owner who spends his spare time in Porn Message Parlors & Bill could not win for nothing without Tom Brady - Screw Him. Alabama won another National Title (6Th under Saban), beating Ohio State 52-24. QB Mack Jones was 36/45, 464 Yards, & 5 T.D.’s. Devonta Smith in just one half of football caught 12 passes, 215 yards & 3 TD’s.  The Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Lightning opened the season with a 5-1 win over Chicago, with no fans in the seats. James Harden was traded for 4 first Round draft picks-Yeks. Final 4 for the Super Bowl: Packers, Bucs, Bills, & Chiefs. The Colts QB Phillip Rivers retired after 17 years.

The great Hank Aaron passed at age 86. As a 15 year-old he had a tryout with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949.  His 1st team was the Indianapolis Clowns in the Negro League at age 17. Hank signed with the Boston Braves at age 21 in 1952 for $50.00 a month. In his 1st minor league season at Eau Claire he hit 9 homers. The next year at Jacksonville he hit 22. He went to the Majors and smacked 755 Home runs. Still the record in my mind.

The Super Bowl in Tampa will seat only 22,000 because of COVID-19. Cost was $6,000 to $21,000.00 a seat. It was Tom Brady’s 10th Super Bowl, the only QB to do it.

Leon Spinks passed at age 67.  Leon won an Olympic Gold & beat Muhammad Ali. Super Bowl # 55: Tampa Bucs 31 K.C. 9 (Zero TD’S). Tom Brady: 21/29, 201 YRDS, 3 T.D.’S (Gronk got 2 T.D.’s), and Brady got his 5th MVP. Patrick “Beat like a Pinata” Mahomes: 26/49, 270 YRDS, 2 I.T’S, & No TD’S. Tampa’s defense was outstanding (Devin White #45 was a Rock Star). The Buc’s coach Bruce Arians 68 had his mom Kay in the seats, she is 95. The city of Tampa put away their masks & partied their butts off. Tampa is the city of Champions: Super Bowl Bucs, Tampa Lightning Stanley Cup Champs, American League Baseball Champs, & Tampa Rowdies-Soccer Champs.

2021 NFL HOF CLASS: Alan Faneca, Coach Tom Flores, Lions Calvin Johnson, Bucs John Lynch, Peyton Manning, Bill Nunn, Drew Pearson, & Michigan’s Charles Woodson.

Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada: Two teams played the longest game ever, 24 hours a day for 7 straight days. The score: 2649 to 2528. Temps: -40 to -67 below.

Daniel Berger dropped a 31 foot Eagle putt (His 4th Eagle putt of the week) on the last hole to win the 2021 A T & T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. The Tampa Lightning have as new line, THE BLACK RUSSIAN LINE: two blacks: Mathieu Joseph & Gemel Smith along with Russian Alexander Volkov.

Collin Morikawa won the WGC Tournament & $1,820,000.00. This kid is only 24, looks like a young Tiger Woods. Fred Sasakamoose passed at age 86. He was the 1st Treaty Indigenous Indian to play in the N.H.L (1953-54 w/the Chicago BlackHawks).  A movie was made about his life “Indian Horse.” It was sad but great.

Pete Rose made it to age 80. Pete was selected to All-Star games at 5 different positions (Un Real). He should be in the H.O.F., he would never bet on his own team to lose. Bryson De’Chambeau won the Arnold Palmer Tournament with a 5- foot putt on the last hole to win by a shot. He took home $ 1.35 Million - NOT BAD.  

Red Wings beat Tampa 6-4 (3-11-2021). Tampa’s record against Detroit for the last 21 games, stands at 19-1-1. CMU Girls basketball team beat Bowling Green 77-72 to win the MAC Championship. In the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Semi Final Championship Game, Michigan trailed Ohio State by 13 with 4 minutes to go. They came back & only trailed by one with 15 seconds on the cloak & put up a 3-point shot but missed.

In the Big Ten Title game Ohio State lost to Illinois in O.T. 91-88.  Justin Thomas (Who lost his Grandpa 2 Weeks before), won the Players Championship by one shot (& Won $2,700.000) over Lee Westwood (His girl- friend was his caddy - he won $ 1,635,000 for 2nd), Lee who is 47 also finished 2nd the week before.  Drew Brees retired after  20 years in the NFL.

Michigan & MSU made it into March Madness. M.S.U. lost to U.C.L.A. in the 1st game 86-80. 1st  Big Upset: # 15 Oral Roberts 75 over #2 Ohio State 72. The N.Y. Rangers beat the Flyers 9-0. 1/23/1944: the Detroit Red Wings Killed N.Y. 15-0. The Ranger Goalie Ken McAuley faced 58 shots. Syd Howe had a hat trick. Tampa Lightning rookie Ross Colton (age 24) has 2 game winners & a shoot out goal in his first ever 5 games.

Ryan Blaney won the Atlanta NASCAR Race. The Georgetown basketball team all took a knee during the anthem before their game with Butler - then Butler kicked their ass. Michigan made it into the Sweet 16 by beating L.S.U. 86-78 with Brooks & Brown getting 21 points each.  Gronk re-signed with Tampa for 2021. Katherine Diaz (San Salvador), Olympic surfer was killed by lightning surfing (WTH?).

Bob Plager, St Louis’s Bad Ass Defenseman in the NHL passed at age 78. When I was a rabid Red Wing fan in the late 60’s I once dumped a full beer on his head, leaning over the plexiglass at the old Olympia Stadium on Grand River. His two brothers also played in the NHL: Barclay (passed at age 46) & Bill (passed at age 70). The 3 played 5 years together on the Blues hockey team.

The Final 4: UCLA (22-9), Baylor (26-2), Gonzaga (30-0), & Houston (28-3). North Carolina Basketball Coach Roy Williams retired after 33 years. He won 903 games & 3 National Titles. Cancel Culture: Major League Baseball moved the All-Star Game out of Atlanta (& this was the year the Braves Hank Aaron died - SAD), because the state enforces voter I.D. It was moved to Denver (Take politics out of sports!)

The Detroit Tigers won their first game in 2021 in a snow- storm, with Miggy getting his 250th home run as a Tiger (3-2 over Cleveland). Tiger rookie Akil Baddoo in his very first  Major League at bat and first ever pitch  hit a 372- foot homerun. 

Phillip Adams (Former NFL player) murdered 5 people, then killed himself. In the Tiger Wood’s accident, he was going 87 in a 45 MPH zone. Not good. The NCAA will enforce Trans-Gender athletes (BOYS IN GIRLS SPORTS). This is dumb ass stupid & totally unfair. Boys have 50% more bone & muscle mass.

Stewart Cink shot a -19 to win the RBC Heritage - not bad for a 37 year old.  Scottie Pippen’s son Anton passed at age 33. USC football player Chris Brown died at 24.

Lebron James should shut up on politics. He blamed a Columbus policeman for shooting a black teenage girl (James - Did you know that very same girl was going to stab another black girl?  That policeman saved that girls life. Months earlier LeBron was asked about China’s million political prisoners. He said I can’t comment on that, I don’t know enough about it. OMG? We do know you make your shoe money in China!.  By the way, the White House condemned the same Columbus policeman without knowing the facts (SHOCKER). LeBron here is a fact:  111 Policemen have lost their lives in the first 4 months of 2021.

Patrick Marleau (Sharks) played his 1768th NHL game, passing Gordie Howe. But Gordie went & played 419 more in the WHA, where he scored 174 goals & 508 points. A Bobby Orr rookie card sold for $204,000.00. Mike Trout rookie card sold for $7877.00 & Bobby Hull for $22,000.00.

NFL Draft: Alabama had 6 players go in the first round, Michigan one, & MSU-Zero. Notre Dame has the most players in NFL history: 495. The Derby winner was Medina Spirit at 12-1. This horse was bought for $1000.00, he won $2 plus-million  at the Derby. The trainer is Bob Baffert, it was his 7th Derby win. The horse failed a drug test a week later. SAD.

Albert Pujols was released by the Angles. Stats: 667 HRS-.298 BA-3253. H.O.F. calling. Rory Mc’llroy won the Wells Fargo (for the 3rd time) with a -10 & $1,458,000.00. The Red Wings have now missed the Playoffs for 5 straight years. Preakness Winner:Rombauer.” K.H.Lee -25 to win the Byron Nelson. Red Wings re-hired Jeff Blashill (Record: 172-221-62). WHY?  

Tiger Spencer Turnbull threw a 5-0 No-Hitter over Seattle. Phil Mickelson (Age 50) was 6 to win the PGA & $1,800,000.00. He was the oldest two ever win a Major. Bobby Unser, Indy Racer passed at 87. Jason Kokrak won the Schwab Challenge & $1,350,000.00. The Toronto Maple Leafs have not won a Cup since 1967 (54 YRS).

Patrick Cantlay won the Memorial by beating Morikawa in a playoff. Jon Rahm was leading by six when COVID-19 took him out. Jon said I was “I was practicing social distancing by being 6 shots ahead.”  19 year old Yuka Saso won the U.S. Women’s Golf Open. Sexy Lexi Thompson fell apart on her last few holes. Michigan golfer Gene Bone died at age 89.  

Novak Djokovic won the French Open. He has won $150 Million on tour & 19 Grand Slams.  On the Ladies side: Czech Barbora Krejcikova (Age 25). Jon Rahm (Spain), won the U.S. Open with a -6 & $2 ¼ Million. Laurel Hubbard (Transgender) from New Zealand is going to the Olympics as a Weightlifter.

1st NFL player to come out as gay: Carl Nassib (L.A.Raiders). Who cares?  New NBA H.O.F. Members: Piston’s Ben Wallace & Michigan’s Chris Webber. Montreal made it to the Stanley Cup finals. They last won it in 1993. Jacques Demers was their coach.

Harris English went 8 Playoff Holes to win the Travelers Championship & $1,332,000.00. 2nd wasn’t two bad at $806,600.00 for Kramer Hickok.

Former N.H.L. bad-ass Stu Grimson had nearly 400 Hockey fights in his life-going at it with Bob Probert 14 times. SAD ASS TIMES: Gwen (3rd place in the shot put) Berry put a bag over her head during the National Anthem. Lady:  Just leave the bag on full time. 

Angel Cabrera (2007 U.S.Open) (2009 Masters) was sent to jail for domestic violence. The Tampa Lightning won the Stanley Cup again: beating Florida 4-2, Carolina 4-1,Islanders 4-3, & Montreal 4-1. Vasilevskiy had a shutout in every closing game. He is the best Goalie I have ever seen. Kuch led all scorers.  British Open Champ: Collin Morikawa - He has now won two Majors in only eight tries. This time he won $ 2 Million.

The Milwaukee Buc’s won the NBA Title beating Portland 4 games to 2. Giannis Antetokounmpo was the MVP.  

OLYMPICS: U.S.A. Girls Soccer won the Bronze. U.S.A. won the most Gold (39 to China’s 38) & the most medals (113). Nelly Korda (who just played in Midland) won the Gold in golf. U.S.A. Girls won the Beach & Floor Volleyball. U.S.A. Men & Women won Gold in Basketball. The men lost to Japan in baseball. U.S.A. Katie Naqeotte won Gold in the vault. R.O.C. Mariya Lashskene  won Gold in the high Jump (6.74 Feet).

Saginaw Old Golds won their 7th World Title: Beating Drovertown 11-5, Columbus 34-7, Oregon 10-2, & Flat Rock 11-3. They played great D & Jerry Endert was the M.V.P. as the pitcher. The Tigers Bill Freehan passed at 79. Michigan beat Ohio 5-2 to win the Little League World Series. Cantlay beat DeCambeau in a playoff to win the BMW Championship. The shortest shorty shorts in the U.S.Open belonged to Marie Bouzkova, she lost in Round One 6-4 & 6-1.

Looking Badk:  Tim Tebow: First College QB to Rush for 20 TD’S & Pass for 20 TD’S. Two National Titles. First Sophomore to ever win the Heisman (3286 YRDS passing/895 rushing/& 55 TD’S in 2007). 2 Time All-American, set 5 FBS records, 14 SEC records, & 28 Florida records. Yes Tim was great. M.S.U 37 Michigan 33. The best game ever. Michigan’s QB was 28/44, 383 yards, & 2 TD’S. M.S.U.’S Walker ran 197 yards & 5 T.D’S. ONE GREAT GAME.

Scottie Pippen wrote a book about what a pain in the butt Michael Jordan was - not nice. Enes Kanter (Swiss born) called out Nike’s & the NBA’s ‘silence’ on China imprisoning a million people for speaking out against the government.

Steve Yzerman already has his Red Wings playing on the up side. N.F.L.’s Henry Ruggs killed a girl & her dog (they burned to death in the car), while driving drunk at 150 MPH.  Michigan (Days of Denard Robinson) has not beat Ohio State since 2011. The Detroit Lions & Pistons continue to suck.

Georgia is College Football’s best by far this year. America won this year’s Ryder cup. Kevin Cash was the American League Manager of the Year.

 

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