About Last Night: Howard’s Manifest Destiny

Dwight HowardIn case you were out living a life of leisure, here’s what you missed in sports on Thursday.

  • Multiple sources told ESPN that Dwight Howard has been traded to the Lakers in a four-team deal sending Andre Iguodala to Denver, Andrew Bynum and Jason Richardson to the 76ers, and three players to the Magic. Soon after the deal became official, Howard received a card from Kobe Bryant with the words “Never Forget the Top Dog” written above an incredibly graphic drawing of a Rottweiler with Bryant’s face mauling Howard in front of the Staples Center.
  • Usain Bolt added another gold to his stash, winning the 200-meter final for the second straight Olympics. Bolt was so fast in the race that physicists specializing in the study of time travel claimed he simultaneously finished third in the 2016 Rio Olympics, giving him a chance to become the first man to win two medals in a single race. But honestly, with all respect to the scientists, it sounds like bullshit to me.
  • Jordan Zimmermann struck out 11 and Michael Morse homered twice as the Nationals shut out the Astros 5-0. After the game, Morse described his big game to reporters, saying, “beeeeeep, beep-beep beep beep-beep-beep, beeeeeeeeeep, bee-beep [pause] beee-beeep, beep.”
  • Carli Lloyd scored two goals as the U.S. women’s soccer team beat Japan 2-1 to win the gold medal. During the award ceremony, as the national anthem played, American hero Abby Wambach turned toward the Canadians on the bronze medal podium and began counting from one to 10 over and over, with a frightening little smile.
  • American Ashton Eaton out-dueled fellow countryman Trey Hardee to win gold in the decathlon. For those unfamiliar, the decathlon is a ten-event sport featuring the best athletes in the world who are not good enough to win a medal in any individual event. “My parents aren’t even that proud,” said Eaton.
  • Jose Reyes’s 26-game hit streak came to an end with an 0-4 performance as R.A. Dickey (CG, 10 K) and the Mets beat the Marlins 6-1. “LO, I HAVE APPROACHED THEM IN FITS AND STARTS,” said Dickey, who is now calling himself KnuckleGod and speaking in a really loud voice. “I HAVE ZAGGED WHEN THEY ZIGGED, ZIGGED WHEN THEY ZAGGED, SOARED AS THEY FELL, AND IN EACH MOMENT, I AM LORD OF WIND AND SPIN!”
  • Billy Butler came up a single short of the cycle as the Royals won their third straight, beating Baltimore 8-2. In the hotel later that night, Butler laid down in his double-bed, ordered a triple scoop of ice cream from room service, made plans to run when he got home, and then completely freaked the f*** out.
  • Carl Pettersson (-6) is the first round leader at the PGA championship, but Tiger Woods (-3) is just three shots back. “Sucks about no-putter day, huh?” Woods asked Pettersson in the clubhouse. “Yeah, no-putter day. Whose idea was that? Not letting us bring a putter tomorrow? Man, the PGA and their crazy promotions, am I right?” Pettersson timidly told Woods that he didn’t believe him, at which point an enraged Tiger slammed his locker and got in the Swede’s face. “I am your nightmare,” he whispered. “I am every dream you’ve ever had that went wrong. If you bring a putter tomorrow, I will personally teach you the kind of golf they play in prisons.” As of this morning, Pettersson said he still has no idea what that means, but that he could probably putt fine with a driver since it’s basically the same club.
  • UCLA football coach Jim Mora came under fire when he claimed to sell recruits on the school by telling them, “we don’t have murders one block off our campus,” a perceived shot at USC. “Unfortunately,” Mora continued, “we do have murders on the football field. Every Saturday in the fall. I mean, I’ve seen the tapes, and it is horrifying.”
  • Special Announcement: My friends, I will be out of town until next Wednesday, August 22. In my absence, we’ll be running classic installments of “About Last Night” each morning, so just be aware that the posts will have absolutely no relation to what happened in the world of sports the night before.

    No, I’m kidding, we’re not doing that. But I wanted you to know about the hiatus so you don’t think I’ve abandoned you or been fired. (Please note that if I don’t return on Wednesday, August 22, I’ve either abandoned you or been fired.) Enjoy your weeks.

Filed Under: About Last Night, Andrew Bynum, Dwight Howard, Los Angeles Lakers, Olympics, R.A. Dickey, Soccer, UCLA

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Shane Ryan is a contributing writer for Grantland. His book about the young stars of the PGA Tour will be published by Random House in early 2015.

Archive @ ShaneRyanHere