Welcome to another edition of Wake Up With Whitty. Thank you for choosing to kick off your 3-day weekend with me. I know it’s early, and you don’t want to have to process your own thoughts at this hour, so I’ll go ahead and do the thinking for you. Then after you’ve downed a few Monsters or Red Bulls and you’ve had a chance to wake up a bit, you can come back and tell me why I don’t know what I’m talking about.
We have the finals matchups set in both the NHL and NBA, and I could not be less excited for either. In the NHL the Nashville Predators will be facing off against the Pittsburgh Penguins. For me, this comes down to which team I dislike the least. As a Blue Jackets fan, I’ve never been a big fan of the Predators since they were a division rival up until the recent realignment. And while I wouldn’t go as far as saying I dislike Ryan Johansen (unlike another former Jackets star who currently plays for the Rangers…), the way things ended with him in Columbus kind of left a bad taste in my mouth, so I’m not exactly eager to see him hoist The Cup. That being said, the Predators are not the Penguins, and that is worth a lot in my book. Growing up in Cincinnati I’ve learned to despise all things Pittsburgh, so I’m pulling for Nashville all the way here. Preds in 6.
On the hard court, we have a rematch of last year’s finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Rooting for either team kind of feels like rooting for the house at a casino. Admittedly, I’m not a big NBA fan in general, so I don’t have a lot of motivation to follow this one very closely. Once again it comes down to which team I dislike the least. For that reason, I’m going with Golden State. I just can’t in good conscience root for a Cleveland team. Or Lebron. Dubs in 7.
Hall of Fame Homer
Later today Homer Simpson will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Hall is recognizing the “Homer at the Bat” episode, one of the more iconic episodes in Simpsons history, which was released 25 years ago. I have mixed emotions about this. I like the fact that the Hall of Fame is demonstrating some levity and showing that it doesn’t take itself too seriously. It makes it fun for the fans of baseball and of The Simpsons alike. But at the same time, I feel it’s a little bit hypocritical of them. In the episode Mr. Burns places a very large bet on his company softball team to win, and proceeds to stack the deck by hiring actual Major League players to play on the squad. The Baseball Hall of Fame decides to honor this team, but Pete Rose still can’t get in? SMH. Kind of a double standard, no?
By the way, if you’re into The Simpsons, be sure to check out DB’s episode reviews. He’ll be watching and reviewing a different episode every week, so be sure to follow along. You can check out his first one here.
A Little Bit of Fun League
The NFL appears to be trying shed its “No Fun League” nickname. Earlier this week the league announced that it would start allowing a little bit of fun. Certain touchdown celebrations that had previously been outlawed will now be legal. I don’t like this move one bit. I agree 100% with Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, this sets a bad example for the kids. This isn’t just some game. You can’t take the NFL lightly. And you sure as hell can’t enjoy yourself while playing football, that’s absolute nonsense. Do you want to know what my favorite celebration of all time was? It’s called the “Act Like You’ve Been There Before” and you hand the ball over to the ref and jog, not walk (because winners wiggle!), off the field to join your team on the sidelines.
I also have to question The League’s judgment on this one. They’re cutting out a pretty significant source of revenue here. With less money coming in, that means less money they can spend on player safety. Pretty soon we’ll be seeing outdated equipment and less-than-state-of-the-art medical facilities. Injuries are going to skyrocket because of this. So not only does excessive celebration set a bad example for kids, it’s actually dangerous for the players too. Way to go Mr. Goodell, you’ve really done it this time.
Thanks again for joining me this morning. If you liked what you saw, be sure to leave a comment and let me know. Check out the rest of the site as well, and follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on all of the latest posts. I hope your Memorial Day weekend is full of friends, family and food.