Well deserved honour and the most boring way to lose dramatically
As usual, a handful of tiny items to finish off the week, am sure something will catch your fancy.
You’ve got to like it when good things happen to good people, right?
That’s why it was pretty cool yesterday when NBA Tall Foreheads named Masai Ujiiri as the executive of the year.
Yes, he’s the same guy who was the director of global scouting here in Toronto and an assistant general manager during his three years with the Raptors before he moved on to be the executive vice-president of basketball operations out in Denver.
His work over the last year – and that doesn’t include his excellent handling of the Carmelo Anthony fiasco – got him the well-deserved honour; it’s all laid out here in the press release from the league.
Now, I’ve known Masai since 2007 (I remember sitting in his office working on this story a very long while ago) and you could sort of tell that he was on a path to something significant back then.
Here’s a guy who paid he dues all over the world, built a career from the ground through sheer hard work and diligence; it’s nice to see someone like that rewarded.
Now, I also do think it says something that he earned his stripes under the tutelage of Bryan and The Henchmen and every time I speak to Masai, he makes sure I know that he wouldn’t have gotten anywhere had it not been for the opportunity he got here so many years ago.
And I know he called Bryan a great role model and Wayne Embry a mentor when he was talking about the award yesterday and I know that to be the entire truth.
Masai learned an awful lot about the inner workings of a front office when he was here; nice to see it pay off.
This is good Friday music, isn’t it?
Because I know smart people, I am now a bit familiar with Coachella and the Of Monsters and Men set will be blaring in a second.
Was listening to TOD on a drive home when last night’s defeat was accomplished.
A walk-off walk?
Now, I’m trying to think if there’s a worse way to lose a game in any sport than that?
It’s like death by a thousand paper cuts – well, four to be exact – and that fact it takes so long to play out has to be a killer to teammates, coaches and fans.
Wouldn’t you prefer a homer, or a double and single on back-to-back pitches? Or anything other than a walk-off walk?
Other sports when they get to those situations – and it’d generally be overtime, I guess – conclude with at least a bit more drama.
Sure, a 10-point basketball lead with a minute to go in OT is boring but you could just as easily get a buzzer beater.
Not much beats an empty-net pucks goal to tie and hockey overtime – I’m told – can be quite tense and concludes rapidly.
Football? I guess a long, boring run-dominated drive could be a bit of a snorefest but it’s sure not a boring as a walk-off walk.
Not even sure you should celebrate that.
What are you supposed to do, mob the hitter at first base as he saunters down there? Nah.
You should probably just look sheepish and walk back to the clubhouse.
I see some sweet friends over there but there’s not an awful lot of questions in the queue and we’re at that time of the week.
It’s email@example.com, help a guy out.
Speaking of baseball …
Pitchers and catchers – and infielders and outfielders and hitters – reported for The Mighty Navy Tigers and, I tell you, we might not suck.
It’s a short spring training – Opening Day is Tuesday – but at first glance, they can all hit, throw and run; a solid combination in a house league baseball team.
But I have to tell you, after a solid round of giving infield, one of the coaches needs to ease into the season.
Okay, Sir Alex Ferguson hands ‘em up at Man United and he’s a giant in the coaching business, Not Grace makes the point that he could be the greatest coach in all of sports history and I can certainly get on board with that.
Ferguson’s record is incredible, his longevity is laudable, his impact on growing Man U into a global entity cannot be understated.
We haven’t had anyone like that on this side of the pond ever – no one whose team has become a worldwide phenomenon along with other stuff, that’s for sure – and as Ferguson walks off into that good night, it should be one of the most emotional, significant nights in years and years and years, right?
Well, my friend Mighty is on the tweeter and finds a little note that says tickets for Ferguson’s last game, and I quote …
“Going for up to 500 (pounds)”
Up to 500 pounds?
Shouldn’t they be a lot more?
I’m guessing they don’t have the “secondary ticket market” over there that they have here; I’m also guessing scalpers aren’t as prevalent and I’m totally glad that the ownership, unlike some that shall go nameless, didn’t go with the gigantic prize hike we might see over here.
Well, that’s not a totally uncommon occurrence for some of us but it’s Wing Fest and since I’ve got to scarf down all or parts of 20 wings, I better take it easy on the snacking during the day.
There will be no huge salads (like there ever are!) and the in-take of deep fried brown things will be a minimum.
And if I don’t totally screw it up and anyone’s organizing a Pizza Fest, I know where you can get a judge cheap.