2) the US is still not any good at soccer! after losing to the czechs, they just gave me another reason to not care about the world's most popular sport. what's funny is a couple of weeks ago, landon donavan and a bunch of the US players were on the cover of sports illustrated. as usual, the story was how this was the squad that was going to be successful in world cup play and would command the respect of the world. landon donavan had this to say
There's still this reluctance around the world to admit that we're any good at soccerummmm....after all, i guess we did come in fifth last time out. i just think it's silly that soccer players expect americans to back them even though they have yet to even come remotely close to doing anything in the tournament. it seems to me that all soccer apologists want to blame soccer's wild unpopularity in the states on americans. that americans are too stupid or violent to appreciate the beauty of soccer. i hated that argument cuz i knew it wasn't true. i used to blame the game being inherently less exciting than other sports (which i still probably believe), but now i realize more than ever that it's not that the sport is not fun to watch, it's that watching crappy americans who can't play is not fun. i'd watch soccer if it meant being able to watch ronaldihno do his thing, but i'm not going to watch if it means watching landon donavan not score for ninety minutes. anyways, i find it funny that an american soccer player should whine about not getting any respect when the he's done absolutely nothing to deserve it. i wonder if it's any coincidence that the douchebags that play soccer in high school tend to be from this upper class whitey group? one word: entitlement.
3) more on soccer as trinidad and tobago battled sweden to a 0-0 tie. as if a 0-0 game wasn't bad enough, the reaction from everyone was that for trinidad and tobago this was a huge step and it was good as win. i'm sorry but i didn't know that not scoring and not winning was cause for celebration. last i checked, the goal of the world cup was to win matches, not tie them. this is an example of what i like to call "the celebration of mediocrity". i mean i guess it nice that t and t didn't lose, but the way everyone talked about it, you'd think they cured cancer or something. i just can't support a sport that would celebrate a team not losing. jesus i hate soccer.
4) speaking of not losing, let's segue into dallas mavericks talk. jinx schminx, the heat are done. actually, the dallas mavericks are the perfect antidote to soccer (which is why more amerians are watching basketball than the world cup). what i find very interesting about the mavs is that they have yet to play the respect card, and from what i can tell, they won't need to. for the past three years, we've had to deal with the teams in the finals claiming that no one is giving them any respect and how they are motivated to prove their critics wrong. it's such a tired argument and one that has absolutely no merit since basically everyone claims that nobody gives them respect. but the mavs don't really play this card at all. with the exception of maybe mark cuban on his blog, i haven't heard a single, "nobody thought we could do this" or "we want to prove to people that we're the best team". hell, pat riley said something to the effect that people were counting his team out when they were 3-1 up over the pitsons this year (which is completely ridiculous). my larger point is, the concept and the problem of not getting respect as employed by athletes and coaches is something that is completely fabricated by self-centered jerks who always think that when things don't go their way that it must be someone else's fault (i.e. some pistons fans that i know). so it's kinda weird and refreshing to see the mavs still saying all the right think but not making up crap about respect to motivate themselves. unlike the US soccer team, they seem to understand that if they win, that they will get respect. MFFL!