Saturday, November 19, 2005

2005, The Year In Review - Sports

2005 was the year fan-player violence reached a new level when a fan threw a bottle at Indiana Pacers Ron Artest and Artest immediately reacted finding himself heavily fined and missing quite a few games. The NBA initiated a new dress code shortly after the brawl to give the NBA a better image. In baseball New York Yankees Outfielder Gary Sheffield was also hit by a fan, but Sheffield showed restraint and didn't retaliate, which may have been the smarter move. Baseball's image was also hampered by the increase in the number of superstars accused of taking steriods. The asterix will forever be beside the names of such "greats" as Mark McGwire, Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro because of alleged steroid use. A tell all book written by former big league star Jose Canseco in which he admits using steroids and gives the names of others in the game who also use steroids has brought the issue to public scrutiny. Stars of the past have expressed their displeasure for those who may have tarnished the integrity of the game. This group includes hall of famers Henry Aaron and Frank Robinson.
The New England Patriots won their third consecutive super bowl in a razor-thin victory over the Philadelphia Eagles. At this date (November 24, 2005) it doesn't look as if they will win a fourth consecutive super bowl, but they haven't been eliminated yet.
Ozzie Guillen was a chessmaster with the Chicago White Sox in 2005. The 14 year shortstop turned manager knew the strengths and weaknesses(apparently very few) of a team that made winning such a habit in the beginning of the year that they were able to hold off the challenging Cleveland Indians in their division and then go on to be American League and World Champions. Choosing Ozzie Guillen as American League Manager Of The Year was a no brainer.
The American League won another All-Star game and for the second year in a row the American League winner(Chicago White Sox and Boston Red Sox) sweep the National league Champions (St. Louis Cardinals and Houston Astros). When I was a teenager the National League always won. Although I am a fan of the New York Mets (3rd place tie, NL East) and the Cleveland Indians(2nd place, AL Central) I am enjoying the turnaround :-). Sportswise, it wasn't a bad year.

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