In case you were out getting a terrifying vote of confidence from an eccentric Russian oligarch, here’s what you missed in sports last weekend:
- A rough day for the Manning family saw the Dallas Cowboys all but eliminate the Giants’ scant playoff hopes with a 24-21 win at the Meadowlands. “The bad news is, we’re probably headed home in December,” Giants quarterback Eli Manning said after the game as he stroked his weird red mustache. “The good news is, Cooper said I can finally go to Space Camp this offseason. So it’s all good news, because Space Camp is gonna be so worth it!”
- A punt misplayed by Denver’s Tony Carter in overtime proved to be the difference, as the New England Patriots beat the Denver Broncos, 34-31, in an instant classic. “At least I’m not that guy. At least I’m not Tony Carter,” said world’s saddest man Gary Pittson while watching the game’s highlights from a motel room in West Memphis, Arkansas. The Ultimate Clarity: A Life-Changing Life System information session he had attended at the Memphis Airport Marriott had been a bit of a bust, if Pittson was being honest with himself. Sure, the day’s speaker, former Denver Broncos offensive lineman Tony Jones, was possessed of Ultimate Clarity, but he couldn’t see how the principles of confidence and serenity that Jones was espousing could apply to his life. Jones was a millionaire, and he was famous, and he was a Super Bowl champion. Pittson was a nobody. Also, the session was expensive, so much so that after paying for his flight and the fees and the books, Pittson certainly couldn’t afford to stay at the Marriott, but being so far away made it hard to participate in the more social aspects of the information session. Pittson shook his head, looked back up at his TV, and took a deep breath as the highlight repeated itself. “At least I’m not that guy,” Pittson said to no one. “At least I’m not Tony Carter.”
- Baylor fell from the ranks of the unbeatens as its prolific offense was finally bottled up by the Oklahoma State Cowboys in a 49-17 loss. “It appears there are only the three of us left,” Alabama head coach Nick Saban said, as he eyed Florida State’s Jumbo Fisher up and down. “Yes indeed,” said Ohio State’s Urban Meyer, who was flashing a tight-lipped smile. “Now we enter the endgame.” Fisher looked down at the invitation he had received from Meyer and Saban that had beckoned him to this abandoned warehouse, furrowed his brow, and said, “What in the Sam Hell is wrong with you two? We’ll let our boys settle this here championship on the football fields. And if all three of us is equals, well then we leave it to the computers.” But Fisher was wasting valuable time, as Meyer and Saban were both well-practiced in the art of BCS elimination and had already drawn their sabers.
- Chicago fell, 121-82, to the Los Angeles Clippers in their first game without point guard Derrick Rose, who is out indefinitely with a torn meniscus. “It’s heartbreaking,” Clippers point guard Chris Paul said of Rose’s injury after the game. “It’s a wake-up call to remember how much we all love the game. It just shows you how fragile we players really are.” Paul then pointed toward a large poster in the corner of his team’s locker room and added, “Well, that list of every major Clippers injury also reminds us how fragile we really are. So does the motivational sign over the door that says, ‘Just because you’re a Clipper doesn’t mean you have to get catastrophically hurt today, please, — The management.’ That’s a good reminder too.”
- Sources reported that catcher Brian McCann has agreed to terms on a five-year $85 million deal with the New York Yankees. When asked what appealed to him about the Yankees organization, McCann replied, “No showy and disrespectful beards in the clubhouse.”
- Jesus Navas scored in the first 13 seconds as Manchester City put together a comprehensive performance, dismantling Tottenham Hotspur in a 6-0 win. While that scoreline seems dominant, just think about this: At the pace City opened the match, they should have outscored Spurs 405-0. And that doesn’t even account for stoppage time! So by that standard, Tottenham did extremely well and should be lauded for their resolve.
- North Carolina bounced back from their loss to Belmont by beating Louisville, 93-84, handing the defending champs their first loss of the year. When asked about the loss, which dropped Rick Pitino to 0-5 against North Carolina, the Louisville head coach replied, “Call me Ishmael, but I say we play again.” When he got a laugh, Pitino pulled a harpoon gun out, and said, “No. Seriously. Call me Ishmael, and get those kids back out on the court. Now.”
- So here Pittson was, staring at his East Falls High School junior yearbook, which he’d brought with him as a Totem of Clarity, an item that represented the last time he felt in control of his life. It was an item he held as Tony Jones had asked him (well, everyone in attendance) to clutch it like a football under his arm, and to stiff-arm away his shame. Pittson tried, thrusting his arm out toward the “Villains of His Mind,” but he only wound up dropping the book on his pinkie toe (the one with the ingrown toenail, because who had time to trim their toenails? But who has money for an elective surgery to help heal a toe? Who has time to make money?). As the book destroyed his toe, Pittson yelled out the name “Teddy Jackson” in a high-pitch squeal, which both embarrassed him and caused him to recall the time that Jackson wooed Pittson’s dream-sweetheart Sandra Carmone with a sweet bass riff at the East Falls High talent show. And sure, Jackson and Carmone were married now, and so, so happy based on their Facebook photos, but Pittson vowed, as he sat alone in a Howard Johnson in West Memphis, Arkansas, that he would get her back. Well, get her in the first place, as they’d never really been together before. That was his path to Ultimate Clarity. Pittson then thought to himself, Wait, am I the saddest man in the world? But as SportsCenter replayed the Broncos highlights again, he found himself laughing as he said out loud, “Nope! At least I’m not that guy. At least I’m not Tony Carter.”