Thursday, April 10, 2014

Midweek #HotSportsTakes: The Ultimate Goodbye

Thanks to the death of the Ultimate Warrior, we again include wrestling in our #HotSportsTakes.
By Joe Parello (@HerewegoJoe)

Midweek #HotSportsTakes is a new weekly segment here on SuiteSports, where we will offer shallow and somewhat incendiary analysis on random hot-button sports topics of the day.

Let's get right to it.

On UMass' Derrick Gordon Becoming the First Openly Gay D1 Basketball Player:

Gordon said he was inspired by the Brooklyn Nets' signing of openly gay NBA player Jason Collins this year. So, for those that don't think Collins coming out, or Michael Sam coming out as the first openly gay NFL Draft prospect, is important, think again.

I long for the day when something like this isn't news, but we aren't going to get there until many players at each level of every major sport come out and are accepted.

This was another step.

On Brandon Spikes Tweeting "4 years a slave" About His Time With the Patriots:

I haven't seen "12 Years a Slave," but I have seen "Django Unchained." I am now picturing Bill Belichick dressed as Leonardo DiCaprio's character, talking about mandingo fighting.

Thanks a lot Brandon Spikes!

On Arizona Hosting Next Year's Pro Bowl:

This is sure to revive the game!

On Kris Letang's Return to the Ice, 10 Weeks After a Stroke:

He's a hockey player. Seriosly, that's all you have to say. These guys are tough, almost to the point of insanity. Hopefully he stays healthy and is able to have a full career and life afterward.

Letang is only 26, and I'm sure he feels invincible, but a stroke is nothing to play with. Well, unless you play hockey.

On the Heat and Pacers Limping to the Finish in the East:

Who cares, it's still a two-team race in the East. Unless somebody steps up like...

On Joakim Noah Recording a Fourth Triple-Double This Season:

When did Joakim Noah get this good? I mean, everyone thinks the Bulls are playing without their best player, but are we really sure that Derrick Rose is that guy anymore? I think Chicago's best player has been on the floor all year, and he's the reason you don't want to see the Bulls in the playoffs.

Oh, and his hair is awesome.

On the Death of the Ultimate Warrior:

Wrestlers die young, or they get old and do insane things (ie Jesse "The Body" Ventura and Hulk Hogan). The Warrior definitely seemed like the "die young" type, especially when you consider the fact that many people my age thought he died in the early 90s.

I don't really remember much of the Warrior's prime. I was too young to watch him beat Hogan at Wrestlemania VI in 1990, so most of my Warrior memories are from his less than awe-inspiring comebacks. The one I mostly remember was his brief stint in WCW, where Hogan defeated him in a rematch at Halloween Havoc, though a Pay-Per-View error caused most to miss the end of the fight.

It was for the best, as their match was pretty terrible, and I believe it ended with Hogan lighting the Warrior on fire in hokey fashion.

Regardless, what I do remember about the Warrior is intensity. And, for a guy that came up in a time of intense characters like Hogan, Sgt. Slaughter and "Macho Man" Randy Savage, that's saying something.

Like Savage, I'll remember Warrior as a guy that could say incomprehensible jibba-jabba, but make it sound intimidating and oddly thoughtful at the same time.

He wasn't the best worker, and calling his promos bizarre would be an understatement, but it was great to see him inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame before he died. He is certainly one of the most memorable characters in wrestling history.

If you need more proof of that, check out the video below. If you don't have time to watch the whole thing, fast forward to 2:42 for his pre-Hogan match promo for Wrestlemania. In the promo, he urges the Hulkster to hijack the plane he's on while traveling to the show and send it into a nose dive.

Yeah, nothing he said ever made any sense.

On the Death of Michigan State's Most Adorable Fan, Lacey Holsworth:

Michigan State senior forward Adreien Payne befriended "Princess" Lacey when he found out the eight-year old cancer patient was a huge fan of his. Payne visited Lacey in the hospital multiple times the last two years, then brought her out with him on MSU's senior night. She even cut down the nets with him when the Spartans won the Big Ten tournament.
 It was enough to make even the most cynical of sports fans feel warm and fuzzy inside. Unfortunately, Lacey passed away from neuroblastoma, a fetal-nerve cell cancer, Wednesday, but her story led to ESPN college basketball personality Dick Vitale pledging to raise $250,000 for cancer research this month, and inspired millions.

Maybe I'm just getting old, but I loved this story, and rooted for the Spartans in March Madness because of it. If that makes me a sucker, so be it, but my thoughts are with Lacey's family and with Payne, who clearly had a unique bond with this special little girl.

No comments :