First, a post-Olympic bummer that isn't aimed at the Russians. The entire Dominica Olympic team, a married couple from Montana, Gary DiSilvestri and Angelica Morrone, apparently turned out to be massive scam artists who barely participated in the ski events they had signed up for, and made up most of their biographies. Worse, Morrone might have been at least somewhat involved in an skiing-and-Olympic bribery scandal, according to Dave McKenna and Deadspin. It’s a long but fascinating bit of typeage that should be read.
The story does not negate the many acts of nobility that permeated the Games, but it serves as a reminder that not everyone is interested in being noble.
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Angels manager Mike Scioscia, who must surely hate the new collision rule, was more concerned with questions about his next hundred-millionaire’s focus.
“It's not an issue, and it's certainly not an issue with Mike," Scioscia said of a rumored six-year, $150 million deal with Mike Trout that is still in the negotiating process. Scioscia added he hasn't seen a contract become a problem in his time with the Angels. “We haven't had anybody here in 15 years because of a contract situation that hasn't come out and given 100 percent.”
One, how would he know what would distract Trout if he hasn’t been offered the deal yet? Two, distractions are excuses, nothing more, and if Trout could be distracted by his agent’s work, he shouldn’t get the offer to begin with. And three, under Arte Moreno, the first offer for big-ticket items in Anaheim (Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton) has always been, “I’ll double whatever you want.” It’s hard to be distracted when you get that kind of deal.
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Speaking of negotiations, let us now offer the best and worst-case scenarios for Our Jedediah in the Harbaugh mess:
Best: 49ers win Super Bowl, Harbaugh gets whatever he wants, which will include the $10M/year and the power to liquidate Trent Baalke.
Worst: Jed gets a phone call from Steve Ross, the Miami owner, who wanted Harbaugh before and with the mess he’s looking at will want him even more now.
So everyone gets what they want, more or less. Except maybe 49er fans, who are still mortgaging their homes to make the season ticket nut. Happy?
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In other contract news, Craig Delew, a fan of the plucky English soccer side Leyton Orient, tweeted club executive Matt Porter with an offer: If Orient signed goalie Eldin Jakupovic, Delew’s favorite player, he promised he would ”clean the dust off every seat in the East Stand” at Brisbane Road.
Porter did. So Delew did. I guess the money the club saved on the janitorial crew went toward Jakupovic’s salary. Or prawn sandwiches, whichever Porter needed more at the time.
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And now, another bad bet. Washington lobbyist Jack Burkman, likely working for someone who prefers to keep his shame private, said he is fashioning a bill that would ban gay athletes from the NFL, and claims to have garnered political support for the bill.
“We are losing our decency as a nation. Imagine your son being forced to shower with a gay man. That’s a horrifying prospect for every mom in the country. What in the world has this nation come to? If the NFL has no morals and no values, then Congress must find values for it.”
One, morals and Congress – yeah. Two, shut your client’s face.
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Adding to the perspective that wraps us all in a warm glow, Portuguese power Porto lost its first home match since 2008 (81 consecutives wins or draws), and are now third in the Primeira Liga table, though not very far off the lead.
Their fans took this development in good spirit, of course, sending the team from the field with a wall of enraged jeering, and several customers made ‘white flag’ gestures as the players headed to the dressing room. Better than that, though, coach, Paulo Fonseca openly stated he would meet with the team’s president and suggesting that it might mean his resignation or firing.
Sounds like 49ers East.
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And finally, one more non-football football note. Scunthorpe goalie Sam Slocombe, watching his team eviscerate Portsmouth by five goals, kept himself involved by wandering over to the stands and posing with a fan for a selfie. The final was 5-1, but Slocombe was in goal for the Portsmouth goal.
Damn it. I hate it when a potentially great story dies because the principal chooses not to do something stupid.