The past week have seen some statements by some great teams/athletes and I'd like to examine some implications we might need to reflect back on.
First off, the biggest, widely covered and most impacting game or games of the year--World Cup Soccer. Hosted by Germany, a country with a storied and controversial athletic past, Mexico today came out and made a statement to the world...we're here and we're for real. Beating Iran 3-1, it was not necessarily who the opponent won, but the magnitude of the voice collectively coming from Mexico and the team that has been assembled. The pride we can see is evident in the fans of Mexico who have not had a lot to cheer for the last 7 years.
It's my opinion that as Mexico advances through the coming rounds, we will continue to hear that voice as they seek their first World Cup Trophy.
Speaking of voices, did you hear Asafa Powell? That's my record.
Powell tied the 9.77 mark he set along with Justin Gatlin recently at the British Grand Prix. Talk about marketing, Track & Field could not be scripting this type of PR any better. Now everyone is looking even more towards July 28th when Powell and Gatlin will finally meet and compete against each other. Make sure you don't blink, you might miss it, hopefully it's a sign of things to come.
Some are coming, others are going...supposedly last night was the final fight of Bernard Hopkins' career; if it was Hopkins looked and fought magnificently against Antonio Tarver who saw much of the legendary status he has spent the past 2 years building take two steps back. Hopkins technically won every round except one, however, it was a unanimous decision and Hopkins' finally was given the due he deserved. We thought maybe Larry Merchant would ride off last night too-no such luck.
This fight set up an excellent situation and shows that maybe boxing has some intelligent federations after all. Winky Wright will take on Jermain Taylor, Taylor has defeated Hopkins twice in his career and if he were to also beat Wright handedly and talks the right game, he could be the motivation to bring Hopkins out for one last one...Granted the payday is also there. Hopkins indicated that if he were offered $20 million, he'd even think of coming out of his grave to fight, the way he looked last night, smart man.
I must admit, I'd be intrigued myself, Hopkins did not look like a 41 year old man last night, and if someone besides me also saw all these things, you better believe, the machine is already in motion.
Around this time last year I had a few friends who were so distraught that hockey season was not happening last year; this year if I'm correct, I think that they are distraught this year with the season going on. If I'm correct NHL season has come and while it's not gone...it's not really here either. I can remember excitement and thrilling games to look forward to, but after the initial marketing done to re-establish the League with fans this year, the efforts to sustain have not been there. A post lockout year needs to be HUGE. Yet, the core fan is ho-hum, what gives? Slap some fireworks on that thing, get some pride out here, maybe we need to contract Under Armour out to promote, if I can get more excited about putting on a pair of their cleats than catching an NHL Finals game-something is clearly wrong. Someone didn't protect that house...