Good morning and welcome to another edition of Wake Up With Whitty. It’s Bengals/Steelers weekend so keep your head on a swivel out there. Burfict’s going to be out there taking heads off, and I’m sure Mike Mitchell will be doing Mike Mitchell things:
It’s going to be an ugly AFC North slugfest on Sunday. Any time these two teams get together, there’s going to be fireworks, and you can guarantee that both teams’ fans will be bitching about how dirty the other team played. In my experience, one of the two teams’ fans have been 100% justified in their complaints and the other team should quit whining because the one time that they actually did fall victim to a dirty play it helped them Steel a playoff victory. I won’t say which team is which though because Wake Up With Whitty is a place of love and acceptance so we should all just put aside the hate for a moment. Ok, moment’s over: I hate Pittsburgh. Here’s Wake Up With Whitty:
Marshawn Being Marshawn
Thursday night’s Color Rush matchup between Oakland and Kansas City was short lived for Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch. After a late hit to David Carr’s brother, the Raiders QB, Marshawn Lynch ran onto the field to join the ensuing skirmish. Lynch was clearly seeing red after the play (Color Rush joke? Nailed it!) and was willing to fight anyone that got in his way in order to stick up for David Carr’s brother. Unfortunately for him, one of the people that got in his way was a referee. Marshawn grabbed the official’s jersey and gave him a shove, which was enough to earn Lynch an early trip to the showers.
In addition to being tossed from the game, Lynch also received a 1-game suspension for running onto the field and making contact with a referee. I’m thinking this was all part of the plan though. I’m sure no NFL player likes playing Thursday night games since there’s such a short recovery time from the week before, so Lynch concocted a way to get himself out of the game. Throw on a 1-week vacation after that and you’re looking at a pretty sweet deal. I’d go around pushing people all the time if it meant I could get a week off of work.
The best part of the story is that he didn’t even leave the stadium after he was tossed. Instead, he opted to sneak into the stands and watch the game with the fans. Then, just to add to the absurdity, he took the subway home with the fans as well. Marshawn is a goofy guy, and for the most part I find him to be pretty humorous. I found his little mini-feud with the media to be a bit obnoxious, but I put that on the media members and their inflated sense of importance just as much as I put it on him. Right now he just looks like he’s enjoying himself, which is how the game really should be (you know, minus the whole shoving refs things). Marshawn Lynch, much like Vance Joseph, is having the time of his life.
Some Guy Owned Lonzo Ball Thursday Night
Lonzo Ball did not have a stellar debut on Thursday night. He was held to just 3 points, 4 assists and 9 rebounds in his first ever NBA game. Ball was pretty much bullied the entire game by Clippers guard Patrick Beverley. Beverley’s physical play definitely got to Ball, which he seemed to take great satisfaction in. He took every chance he could to taunt to rookie and let him know his place. And probably worst of all for Ball, the Lakers lost to the Clippers 108-92. After the game Beverley said Lonzo was going to have a target on him everywhere he goes, thanks in large part to the off-the-court antics (Lavar) that come with him. He did give Ball credit and admitted that he is a hell of a talent, but he wanted Lonzo to know his place right now. Welcome to the NBA, rook.
Lavar Ball certainly had some things to say about the performance after the game. In a conversation with ESPN Lavar said that Beverley may have shut down his son, but that wasn’t going to make his paycheck any higher. Essentially, Lavar was calling the Clippers guard a nobody who used Lonzo and Lavar to get people talking about him. He even went as far as asking “Who is Patrick Beverley?”, a question I myself was asking as well. I admit I’m not the most avid NBA follower, but I had not heard of Beverley before his performance against Ball. Or maybe I had, and subsequently forgot about him until just now. You can bet Lonzo’s not going to forget who he is though. And Lavar, if you want to know who Patrick Beverley is, just go ask your son.
Dusty Baker out as Nationals Manager
Dusty Baker will not be returning as manager of the Washington Nationals in 2018, the team announced earlier this week. The move no doubt has toothpick manufacturers across the country scrambling as the lifeblood of their industry now hangs in the balance. Apparently the Nationals decided that 1-and-done playoff performances were not enough (cc: Mike Brown), which has been a Dusty specialty over the past decade. During his time with the Reds and Nationals, Baker never made it past the NLDS, which contributed to his departure from both teams. The Nationals have had a lot of hype around them with the talent they’ve had on their roster, so it’s no surprise that a team who many consider to be an annual World Series contender would not be satisfied with first round exits.
I always liked Dusty, and I was sad when he was dismissed in Cincinnati. While it was frustrating that the team never found any postseason success under Baker, the first round exits (a signature for the Bengals on the other side of town) were much better than the Reds performances the past couple years. Granted the team’s struggles aren’t necessarily on current manager Bryan Price, as the team is in the middle of a complete rebuild and is actually showing signs of heading in the right direction. I didn’t think the team’s postseason struggles were completely on Dusty either though, and I would certainly go back to that right now. I believe Cinderella (the band) put it best: you don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone.
Thank you for joining me for another edition of Wake Up With Whitty. There’s certainly a lot to look forward to in the sports world this weekend. As I mentioned earlier, I’m most excited for the latest installment in the Bengals/Steelers rivalry. We’ll see if I’m still singing that same tune Sunday night. For all of you WWE fans out there, you have even more to look forward to:
WWE Hall of Famer and American wrestling legend Kurt Angle is making a return to action in Sunday’s WWE Tables, Ladders and Chairs pay-per-view event. Angle, currently the general manager of WWE Raw, will be making his first WWE wrestling appearance since 2006. He’ll be replacing Roman Reigns, one of several wrestlers currently battling a viral infection. The WWE 2K cover curse strikes again.
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