Silly boxing "legend", sillier basketball fans

It was a moment that seemed to get stuck in quicksand.

A tall, deep, fierce and young Lansing volleyball team had perennial power St. James Academy on the ropes on the Thunder’s home court Saturday night in the season opener for both teams.

Lansing senior setter Courtney Rexroat went up for a set she would never be able to make as a SJA blocker reached so far over the net she could have scratched Lansing’s Kennedy Farris behind the ears – and Farris was playing in the back row. The SJA player interfered with the play. We used to call that a “hinder” when I played.

The referee called the SJA infraction. The score was 20-18 Lansing. The crowd went wild and I began to dictate the moment into my recorder. Momentum was all on Lansing’s side.

But wait.

The St. James’ coaching staff decided to let the referees know that it was Rexroat, not their invader of net space, who was the true villain.

After hearing the ravings of the SJA coaches, the referees decided to overturn their call based on the blustering of the coaches rather than the use of their own eyes.

Rexroat was more guilty of ordering a mushroom and spinach pizza than she was of any back-row attack or double hit on the play.

How can you tell that the refs changed a call without using any of their own visual stimuli?

When a coach confers with officials, usually they will gesticulate in a way where they describe what they saw when discussing the moment. The only people doing any animated illustration – or actually just more talk – were SJA coaches and players.

The original call was overturned.

Even if Rexroat did commit an infraction, it would have occurred after the initial breaking of the plane of the net by the Thunder front-row player. Anything that happened after that moment would have been null and void anyway. If she had been called for a double hit, that usually happens when an opponent is reaching over the net.

So be it.

The reality is this: St. James Academy played out of its mind – like it usually does – on its home court to win a 2-1 thriller at 27-25 in the deciding set against a Lansing team that:

- Didn’t get a consistent block up until after the second set was in full bloom

- Was inconsistent in serve receive and gave away numerous points on serve, including match point

- Was outplayed defensively

- Was playing with only two seniors and a number of new faces

They lost by only two points on the road to a perennial power despite all that?

The difference between the two teams is simple. SJA will get better, but it can only get so much better. The Lions will get better also, but where they are now is still eons away from what they can be.

Oh, and they lost by only two points.

If the Lions use this loss to push forward, they are going to win the ring. Nothing but complacency will deny them. They are too good and too talented to be kept from the school’s first 5A title.

Lansing volleyball is a work in progress and the Lions still played the state’s preeminent 5A program to the wire. Did I mention they lost by only two points?

The fraud of a fighting legend

Floyd Mayweather likes to tell everyone he is a really great fighter – whenever he is not facing a new round of charges for beating women, of course. 

Mr. Hide and Seek definitely cemented his fraudulent greatness by going to the end of the 10th round of 12 against MMA fighter Conor McGregor on Saturday night.

Mayweather earns more money by dancing and throwing one punch every solar eclipse than running away for about 35 of 36 minutes in the ring for his 49 wins against no losses.

He then took on a guy equipped to go maybe 15 minutes at most in an MMA cage and whose legs and cardio betrayed him. McGregor was finally stopped by the referee’s pity.

Funny how Mayweather was “pummeling” McGregor to the point where the Irishman never left his feet.

Mayweather has benefitted from a dearth of bad boxers and finally going into the ring with Manny Paciao, who was collecting Social Security checks when the bell rung.

Mayweather is a fraud in a broken era that lifted him to undeserved heights. He is nothing more than the poster child for the best of the worst.

 

Hoop dominance

The millennial crowd just can’t let it go.

Basketball has become the worst played American sport and continues to create false facts to try to make the game relevant so they can tell us “old” people that they have it better than we did.

Not even close.

The newest weak salvo: Stephen Curry would have been the dominant ballhandler of the 1980s and 1990s.

He would? Oh, I see.

So you mean a guy that gets to literally carry a ball above his waist, cup it, stop the ball from moving, etc., would be dominant in an era in which the officials would have called traveling, double dribbling and carrying every time?

Um, no.

Curry and all of these other cheaters would have to re-teach their bodies to go against 20-plus years of training. Nothing funnier than hearing these guys would simply “adjust.”

You mean going from playing the game where it is 10 times easier to play to having it 10 times harder?

These are the same people who tell me Larry Bird wouldn’t get off the bench in today’s game.

Enough said.