Thursday, August 25, 2016

Hope Solo suspended from USWNT for 'cowards' remark towards Swedish team

Hope Solo will have plenty of time to think about choosing her words more carefully after U.S. Soccer announced it has suspended the rabble-rousing goaltender from the U.S. Women’s National Team for six months citing conduct that is contrary to the organization’s principles.

The suspension comes after Solo called Sweden cowards following the Americans’ elimination from the Olympics in the quarterfinal round. The Aug. 12 loss to Sweden on penalty kicks ended the U.S.’s run of three consecutive gold medal wins.

“The comments by Hope Solo after the match against Sweden during the 2016 Olympics were unacceptable and do not meet the standard of conduct we require from our National Team players,” U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati said. “Beyond the athletic arena, and beyond the results, the Olympics celebrate and represent the ideals of fair play and respect. We expect all of our representatives to honor those principles, with no exceptions.”

Hope Solo responded to the suspension:
Sweden, coached by former U.S. coach Pia Sundhage, eliminated the U.S. on penalty kicks after the teams remained tied 1-1 after 120 minutes. Solo took exception to Sweden playing conservatively, which forced the U.S. to be in the rare position of chasing, not controlling, the pace of play.

“I think we played a bunch of cowards,” Solo said. “Sweden dropped off. They didn’t want to open play. They didn’t want to pass the ball. They didn’t want to play great soccer. It was a combative game, a physical game. Exactly what they wanted and exactly what their game plan was.”

Solo sort of apologized for using that particular c-word but her post game comments were not supported by teammates, who roundly criticized the outspoken goalie.

And this isn’t the first time Solo has stirred up controversy.

Solo was arrested and charged with two counts of domestic violence in 2014 when an alleged drunken incident which involved her half-sister and nephew went public. The charges were dismissed in 2015 but subsequently reinstated.

The trouble-making goal keep was also suspended for 30 days last summer after taking a joy ride in the team van with her husband, former NFL tight end Jeramy Stevens — who pleaded no contest to driving the van while intoxicated.

Conveniently, that benching was over before the USNWT started play in the  World Cup. 

As a result of her most recent suspension, Solo will not be eligible for national team selection until February.

Just guessing there aren’t any important tournaments for Solo to miss during that six-month time-out.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Utah golfer stabs man on golf course because of slow play

A Utah golfer frustrated by the slow play of a party in front decided to take matters into his own hands by using a knife to cut through the offending duffers.

After Lee Johnson and his wife asked if they could play through the slow putters in front and were refused, 61-year-old Johnson pulled out his trusty No. 3 penknife and reportedly sliced his way through — and not in a golfing sense.

A fight then broke out on the fairway before security from the clubhouse had to come and calm things down.

Payson Police Lieutenant Bill Wright told KUTV that Johnson, from Payson near Salt Lake City, was then wrestled to the ground by one of the men in the group. 

Johnson was charged with aggravated assault. His wife was not involved in the fracas and wasn’t charged or arrested. 

The victim was treated at a local hospital for non life-threatening injuries. 

Monday, August 22, 2016

U.S. Army reservist hears national anthem during pole vault, stops mid-attempt and stands at attention (VIDEO)

In an amazing moment of patriotism last week, a USA pole vaulter who was in the middle of a qualifying jump at the Olympics stopped short on the runway with pole in hand to stand at attention when he heard the Star-Spangled Banner coming from a distant loudspeaker.

US Army reservist Sam Kendricks from Mississippi, was running pole in hand when he heard the first notes of the national anthem and his love of country took precedence. 

A video released by NBC Olympics shows the second lieutenant in the midst one of his attempts to qualify that day but, instead, the 23-year-old stopped dead in his tracks and let go of the pole to respectfully stand still. 

Kendricks, a former track star at Ole Miss, looked a bit confused as he remained standing for the entire duration of the song.

When it was over, the soldier clapped and promptly picked up the pole and went on to jump.

It is unclear whether Kendricks received any penalty for stopping in the middle of a run, but he qualified and went on to win the bronze medal last week — clearing 5.85 meters — over 19 feet.

Kendricks' decision has earned him the respect of many on social media, who commended him for his respectful act.

But my question is why NBC took so long to publicize it?

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Mongolian wrestling coaches strip down to underwear in protest of bronze medal loss (VIDEO)

For any of you out there who ever wondered what a Gobi Desert Chippendale's might be like (you know who you are), look no further than the 65 kg bronze medal wrestling match Sunday afternoon when a pair of Mongolian coaches stripped off their clothing on the mat in a protest of a call by officials that gave the medal to Uzbekistan's Ikhtiyor Navruzov.

The bizarre scene unfolded after an afternoon filled with disputed calls — and a lot of multi-syllable names — when  Navruzov appeared to have lost to Mongolia's Mandakhnaran Ganzorig 7-6.

Uzbekistan challenged the scoring, believing that the Mongolian was fleeing instead of fighting because he was running around in celebration with less than 10 seconds left.

Navruzov — whose quarterfinal match resulted in the dismissal of all three officials involved after a questionable late call — won his challenge and, ultimately, the match on criteria.

With about seven seconds left in the match, Mongolia's Mandakhnaran Ganzorig began running around the mat, waving his arms in front of Navruzov in celebration of his impending victory. When the final buzzer sounded, Ganzorig fell to the mat in celebration. His coaches covered him in the Mongolian flag.

Cue the music.

Right after the penalty point call, a disgusted Byambarenchin Bayaraa took his shoes and shirt off and threw them to the mat as Tsenrenbataar Tsostbayar stripped all the way down to his blue undies in front of the officials as the Brazilian crowd started chanting “Mongolia! Mongolia!”

"This was a protest. There was a problem with the refereeing," said Bayarra. "The Mongolian wrestler won 7-6 and he lost because of this [judges' decision]. This is the only time in history of wrestling with point penalty."

When in Rio...

Brett Gardner makes unbelievable catch to rob C.J.Cron of home run (VIDEO)

All the talk surrounding the Yankees lately is about the team's new young guns but, it was a Bombers veteran who showed the young 'uns that some of the oldsters weren't ready to be set out to pasture just yet.

Brett Gardner made one of the the top catches of the season — maybe the best —  after leaping over the wall to steal a home run from C.J. Cron in the Yankees' 5-1 victory against the Angels Saturday night at Angel Stadium.

Somehow, Gardner kept his balance and — with his stiff body straddling the fence — might have become the first Yankee to do some planking on the stadium's left field wall.

Cron — just like everyone else — couldn't believe Gardner's grab and put his hands on his head in disbelief.

Even pitcher Tyler Clippard, who threw the  pitch, applauded Gardy's feat.
What youth movement?

Friday, August 19, 2016

French race walker poops pants, collapses and still finishes 50K Olympics race (VIDEO)

It’s easy to joke that every competitor in a race walk event looks like they are making a nervous beeline to the nearest restroom but, during Friday's Olympics, one French racer's funny gait actually signaled a bathroom emergency during a race.

Yohann Diniz built up a lead in the 50-kilometer walk but, around mid-point through the race, his No. 1 status was about to become more about No. 2 — and I don't mean positioning.

The world record holder appeared to lose control of his bowels on the course and ended up stuffing wet sponges down his shorts to help stem the tide of the gastro-intestinal inconvenience.

With 20K to go, Diniz had a healthy lead — 1 minute, 28 seconds — on the rest of the field when he pulled up complaining of stomach pain. At the 35K mark, Diniz keeled over and collapsed onto the pavement.

Officials helped the gritty high-school sports coach from France back to his feet before he doused his head with a bottle of water, rubbed himself down with ice cubes and was off again.

"His legs were wobbling like cooked spaghetti at times" reported The AP.

While food was probably the last thing on his mind at that time, Diniz didn't let Rio turn into Diarrhio and managed to finish the race in 8th place.

Suffice it to say, they might want to give a brown medal to that 9th place finisher.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Ryan Lochte 'robbery' becomes international incident after three U.S. swimmers are detained in Rio

Two of the USA Olympic swimmers who were with Ryan Lochte when he was reportedly ‘robbed’ in Rio Sunday night were escorted off a plane and prevented from leaving the country by Brazilian authorities.

Jack Conger and Gunnar Bentz were in their seats aboard United Airlines flight 128 to Houston at Rio's Galeao International Airport when police came for them — turning a dubious incident into a full blown international one.

The dramatic turn of events came amid mounting questions over whether the gold medal-winning swimmer really was held up at gunpoint by men with police badges as Lochte claims — and why he changed his original version of the story over the weekend for a second time.

Describing the experience as "frightening" the 21-year-old Conger and 20-year-old Bentz had their passports seized and cannot leave Brazil until they provide official sworn testimony about their alleged mugging at gunpoint along with Lochte and fourth teammate, Jimmy Feigen — who has been ordered to remain in Brazil.

Lochte won't have the same problems since he has been spotted in in Charlotte, North Carolina with his Playmate girlfriend Kayla Reid.

Brazilian authorities have turned up the heat on the swimmers after questions about the athletes' timetables and circumstances surrounding their stories didn't add up.

The diplomatic gloves really came off when surveillance video of the athletes returning to the Olympic Village the night in question showed little details like the men still wearing their watches and Lochte holding what looks like his wallet:

Upon leaving police custody early on Thursday morning, Conger and Bentz refused to answer questions about what happened.

On Sunday, Lochte told Billy Bush on NBC's Today Show that "We got pulled over, in the taxi, and these guys came out with a badge, a police badge, no lights, no nothing just a police badge; and they pulled us over. They pulled out their guns, they told the other swimmers to get down on the ground—they got down on the ground.

"I refused. I was like we didn't do anything wrong so I'm not getting down on the ground. And then the guy pulled out his gun, he cocked it, put it to my forehead and he said, 'Get down.' And I put my hands up. I was like 'Whatever.' He took our money, he took my wallet; he left my cellphone, he left my credentials."

Things escalated after Lochte called his mom and told her he had been robbed. Then she, of course, went to the press. The 32-year-old swimmer claims he didn't go to the USOC with his story at first because "We were afraid we'd get in trouble."

And mommy knows best.
Attorney Sergio Viegas says Conger and Bentz did not testify and left police custody Thursday morning for an unspecified location in Brazil. Both men refused to answer questions about what could possibly be the most convoluted night out since the "The Hangover."

But, according to the USOC, Feigen "intends to make further statements regarding the incident on Thursday."

"There was a confusion, they are very scared by this," said Viegas. "They didn't understand what was happening or why they couldn't embark."

So while Conger and Bentz try and dog-paddle their way out of Rio, Lochte is freestyling it back home with his girl.