Quick handoff at United-Freedom doubleheader

D.C. United and the Washington Freedom warmed up for their back-to-back games Saturday in RFK Stadium with back-to-back practices Friday in RFK, giving those of us seeking economy in our journalism a chance to talk with a few players from both teams in one session. A few stories to watch: United injuries and turnover: Clyde Simms is back. New defender Juan Manuel Pena could go the full 90, says coach Curt Onalfo. Forward Danny Allsopp passed a Friday fitness test. And if the paperwork goes through, United could bring former league MVP Luciano Emilio off the bench. Weather: Unfortunately, these … Continue reading Quick handoff at United-Freedom doubleheader

Friday Myriad: Europa, but no pirate twins?

The big soccer news for U.S. fans and anyone who appreciates the underdog: Fulham reached the Europa League final, rallying from 1-0 down to win 2-1 Thursday against Hamburg. That’s not exactly Butler reaching the NCAA hoops final — Fulham plays in the Premier League, and Hamburg would’ve been the team playing at home in the final. It’s more like Northwestern, in a major conference but not a major player, reaching the NCAA hoops final. The U.S. interest is, of course, Clint Dempsey, who was on the field for the big comeback. The weekend ahead includes another eight-game Saturday in … Continue reading Friday Myriad: Europa, but no pirate twins?

The perils of predicting prospects’ futures

He was a young American phenom, joining a pro team in high school. He was compared to the best players of his generation. After signing in Portugal, things started to go wrong. Freddy Adu? Nope. Jovan Kirovski, subject of a compelling profile by the San Diego Union-Tribune‘s Mark Ziegler. Kirovski came of age in the days before the breathless hype machine we know today. He left California for Manchester United’s youth academy at age 16. By the time he was 19, everyone wanted him to be on United’s first team, where he was expected to be an impact player. Everyone … Continue reading The perils of predicting prospects’ futures

‘The Ultimate Fighter’: Season 11, Episode 5: Epic struggle

After a week in which Tito Ortiz traded accusations with longtime girlfriend Jenna Jameson, with whom he has started a family, it’s a relief to see an episode that focuses on the fighting.

We don’t see much in the house besides some idle speculation of which losing fighter should get a wild-card slot to return to action. Clayton McKinney is out of action with a shoulder injury. Rich Attonito won but can’t continue because of a broken hand. But with three first-round fights to go, we’re still a long way from getting an answer on this.

Tito has the right to pick the matchups, and he sends out Kris McCray against Josh Bryant. McCray cracks up Bryant at the staredown, and other fighters says Bryant doesn’t really act like he wants to fight. Not sure why else someone would spend six weeks cooped up in a house with these guys.

Continue reading “‘The Ultimate Fighter’: Season 11, Episode 5: Epic struggle”

D.C. doubleheader intrigue: Watching crowd … and Emilio?

D.C. United and the Washington Freedom play a doubleheader on Saturday, and it’ll be interesting to see how many United fans stick around for the women’s game. The typical MLS-women’s doubleheader has been ladies first. This one’s reversed. I’ve posted about it at The Huffington Post, tracing what has happened since a Freedom-United doubleheader would draw more than 20,000 by halftime of the first game on the bill. The MLS game could have added interest thanks to a dramatic development today — D.C. United re-signed former league MVP Luciano Emilio. He might be cleared to play Saturday, says the Post‘s … Continue reading D.C. doubleheader intrigue: Watching crowd … and Emilio?

Sounders fans should blame the duper, not the dupee

Seattle fans have had a frustrating season so far, victimized by a couple of late goals and a strange scheduling quirk. One of those late goals came from a controversial call Thursday at Dallas. The only person I’ve seen defending Terry Vaughn’s call is MLSSoccer’s Simon Borg, dissecting the video here: Non-embeddable video clip So we hear that Seattle fans may make some sort of protest. Or not. Judging by what we’re seeing at BigSoccer, cooler heads have prevailed. And that’s good, for several reasons: 1. Refs are human. No league operates without complaint. I’m still bitter about a few … Continue reading Sounders fans should blame the duper, not the dupee

Monday Myriad: Bolt flies while U.S. nets wins in tennis and beach volley

TRACK AND FIELD Penn Relays: Usain Bolt draws record attendance and clinches the 4×100 relay with a blazing final leg. USA fares well in the rest of the relays. (AP) Drake Relays: Christian Cantwell shot putted real far, Damu Cherry upset Lolo Jones and tied the world lead in the 100m hurdles, Wallace Spearman set a world lead in the 200, Boaz Lalang upset training partner Bernard Lagat in the mile, and Chaunte Lowe posted the world lead in the high jump. (IAAF) Dakar Grand Prix: The volcano kept the early-season meet from bringing in top talent. Top U.S. performances … Continue reading Monday Myriad: Bolt flies while U.S. nets wins in tennis and beach volley