Friday, February 29, 2008

2008 Southern California Golf Show Review

The 5th Annual Southern California Golf Show started today and runs through Sunday at the Long Beach Convention Center. General admission is $10 but you can get $1 off coupon on their website.

With paid admission, you get a subscription to either Golf Digest or Golf for Women, a free round of golf, some contest entries, and a free sleeve of golf balls (the latter to the first 1000 attendees each day). Not bad for $9!

We were on the mailing list from attending last year's Pasadena show so we also had a coupon for a free golf glove from The glove was quite nice and had the show's logo emblazoned on the top. My husband tried it out at the demo booths and later at the range and really liked it. He's rather rough on gloves and it seems to be pretty sturdy. We heard from our local golf store that this company only does huge bulk orders though, even though the booth told us they sometimes do single orders...hmmm...

March 28, 2008 Update: Scott from Logo Golf sent me a note to let me know that they have a line called Reflex Golf that covers individual sales. They also do tournament-sized sales of 144 quite frequently. Again, they make a nice glove that is worth checking out. Thanks Scott!

Amidst the timeshares and golf resorts looking for contest entrants, there were definitely worthwhile vendors to check out. Of course, nearly every booth had a drawing of some sort to win rounds of golf, clubs, or vacations. We did pick up some of the magazines/brochures from the courses in Nevada and Arizona and entered to win tickets to the Ryder Cup. West Coast Golfer is a worthwhile read that has info about courses, tips, and the top 20 PGA golfers in the issue they were handing out. I picked up another publication called "Golfing Nevada" that has great photography and info about the courses it covers. Of course, I stopped at the Southland Golf booth and picked up the latest issue. This monthly publication covers equipment, people, travel, apparel, etc. - definitely worth a read. If you don't make it to the show this one is usually available at driving ranges and golf stores around Southern California.

On the 710 ESPN stage there were swing clinics and giveaways that included a putter valued at $150. In fact, as you enter the event, Max Out Golf and a few others were doing a free swing analysis. The virtual long drive contest was back along also as was another contest booth where players attempt to hit targets suspended from the ceiling.

Ping had an extensive exhibit in the club demo area that included computer analysis. Speaking of analysis, I interviewed one of the Body Balance guys and will post those "5 Questions" tomorrow...

Many of the club companies were offering personalized fittings when they weren't too busy. At the edge of the demo area attendees could also stop and get a free, 5 minute lesson. There were at least four golf apparel booths there, with the very best being Tattoo Golf.

Roger Dunn Golf was the main attraction at the back of the show. They're having a massive sale and the line was at least 35 deep at the register when we walked in. They were handing out snacks to those in line to make the wait a bit more bearable. Speaking of snacks, Mrs. May's Naturals was handing out those perfect little snack bars to put in your bag for unexpected hunger attacks on the course.

Unfortunately, since today was the first day there were quite a few empty booths. As I mentioned, it continues through Sunday so I would venture to guess that everyone will be there over the weekend. These are good events if you are looking for something specific or want to try some new technologies and products that you may not get to see at your local shop.

Can We Stop Covering Roger Clemens?

I am not talking about ESPN or any of the sports news sources. These are the places that we should be hearing about what is going on with sports figures. I am merely making a suggestion to the mainstream, general media. Houses are being foreclosed. The stock market has had two days of very bad performances. The "credit crunch" is smashing consumer dreams. There is an upcoming presidential election. Oh, and there happens to be a war in the Middle East. I'm just saying...

Thursday, February 28, 2008

NFL Free Agency 2008

With the NFL Combine behind us, the focus is now on the free agents!

Randy Moss is certainly at the top of many coaches’ wish list. Don’t hold your breath though, the New England Patriots will surely keep him…you would think…

Michael Turner, currently with the San Diego Chargers would be an excellent pick up at running back. Rumor has it that the New York Jets are considering the possibilities.

New England Patriots corner Asante Samuel will also be on the bidding block after five years with the team.

Dallas Cowboys running back Marion Barber will likely be resigned with the team.

Rumor has it that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are looking at QB Daunte Culpepper. Last year’s starter, Jeff Garcia, is pushing 37 and that is a bit seasoned for the QB position.

Oh, and let's not forget that Zach Thomas has been touring the Home for Old Defensive Players aka the New England Patriots.

The next few days will tell the tale…

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Wild World of Wednesday

Halfway through the week and there is more sports news than I can keep my little fingers typing about!

Yesterday, the PTI guys were talking up a storm about the Barry Bonds to Tampa rumor. Blogs in the Sunshine State are abuzz with the possibilities. This will be fun to watch!

What is up with Jim Rome’s beef with soccer? Yesterday he claimed that he was wrong about NASCAR and horse racing and they’re OK to watch now. But soccer, nope – he says he’ll never like it! Did he get an online betting sponsor that needed him to reverse his decision on the other two? I’m just wondering…

And in honor of Mr. Rome…the match between Juventis and Torino went scoreless but ended with a bit of excitement. Torino’s Paul Nedved got a red card in the 90th minute for pulling the hair of Gianluca Comotto – right in front of the referee! In true NFL punter fashion, Comotto grabbed his head and went flailing to the grass.

And there seems to be talk that golf is actually declining in popularity. Apparently whoever said that has not been to a course or shop in Los Angeles County. Around here, I can barely get a spot at the driving range. Of course, if we are headed for a recession the fun things like golf and other leisure activities can suffer.

Oh yeah, and Floyd Mayweather is headed for a bout in the WWE ring. I guess that is the logical next step after his "Dancing With the Stars" appearance last year.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

5 Questions With an Obsessed Skateboarder

Louie Baur runs a website listing over 3,500 skateparks around the world called Himself a skater since around 1980, this Desert Storm veteran even built ramps on his tour of duty. Louie graciously agreed to put the board down for a moment and be the subject of my latest 5 questions:

1. You began skateboarding at a time before the X Games, Tony Hawk's dominance, and Fuel TV – how was the sport viewed during that time? Was everything "Dogtown and Z-Boys"?

Yes, it was kind of like that. I wasn't much of a street skater and I liked skating pools and ramps. They tore down all the good parks in the late 80's like Upland, Del Mar, Big O and more. We got harassed a lot almost everywhere we went. Still, that hasn't changed much. When you go to a street spot you still get harassed by security and when you go to a skatepark a lot of them are constantly monitoring you for proper safety equipment.

2. You recently wrote a post about building a skate ramp in Turkey while you were in the Air Force – what was the biggest challenge trying to make that happen?

Actually, when I got stationed in Turkey I had just broken my foot and couldn't skate. I saw a beat up old ramp at the rec center on base and told the director that it was not functional and if he would be into letting us build something that was. Our biggest challenge was getting the right wood. Usually you use 1/2" plywood because it is plyable enough to bend it onto the ramp. They gave us 5/8" plywood and we had to cut each piece in half and soak it with water to get it to mold to the ramp. Not complaining though - we got it handled and that ramp was solid as a rock!

3. Tell me about – how did it start? How did you get the word out to get so many parks listed?

In 1999 I saw the need for some sort of map to the skateparks that started popping up all over California. I started networking with friends and getting them to take pictures and write reviews to the parks I couldn't get to. That concept still holds true today and people from all over the world submit skatepark reviews and photos so you can make it to the local skatepark when you are in the area.

4. Who are some professional skaters that you watch? Which events do you find the most exciting for skateboarding?

I have mad respect for the Vert Skaters - some of them would be Danny Way, Tony Hawk, Bob Burnquist, Brian Patch, Chris Gentry, Rune Glifberg, Omar Hassan and many more. Those guys helped me get on the ramp to take pictures of many events that I didn't have proper credentials for. It does help to know people for sure. The events that I find most exciting for skateboarding would be the Vans Protec Pool Party in Orange, that one is raw and hardcore. The big air jump at the X Games is pretty insane as well.

5. Now that skateboarding has become more mainstream, where do you see the sport progressing to? Do you think we will ever see Olympic events in skating?

That's not too far fetched I would love to see skateboarding become and Olympic sport for sure! Snowboarding roared onto the Olympics scene a few seasons ago and that seems to be pretty popular I think skateboarding would yield the same results.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Barry Bonds Going to Tampa?

As I was driving on La Brea this morning 710 ESPN said that the St. Petersburg Times is reporting that the Tampa Bay Devil Rays are considering Barry Bonds. The team is allegedly denying this but when I looked it up there is much chatter about this proposition.

The Devil Rays have long needed to sell the area on becoming fans. While there are those that do follow the team, most are more concerned with the former Super Bowl-winning Tampa Bay Buccaneers or one-time Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning. I can't wait to see the outcome of this one!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Sunday Sports Wrap – February 24, 2008

In my effort to show the world that there is a plethora of sports to follow on Sundays when the NFL season is over I compile a selection of events from the day. It is almost impossible to cover everything so leave me a comment if there is something you'd like to see!

Golf – Tiger Woods is triumphant in the Accenture Match Play Championship

Serie A Soccer – Inter Milan tops AC Milan 2-1

Carling Cup (Football League Cup) – Tottenham Hotspur def Chelsea 2-1 in English football.

NCAA Women’s Hoops – Maryland over Florida State 92-84

NBA – Boston Celtics beat Portland Trailblazers 112-102, Detroit Pistons beat Phoenix Suns 116-86

Surfing – Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast Australia underway through March 5th

Skiing – North American Open in Breckenridge, CO

And today in sports history

1960: The United Stated defeats Germany in Olympic Ice Hockey by a score of 9-1

1987: Los Angeles Lakers star Kareem Adbul-Jabbar scored his 36,000 point in the NBA

5 Questions With A High School Basketball Coach

Basketball is one of those sports I quite enjoy playing and Dorsey is one of the high schools I attended! I was excited when Sherlett Hendy, coach of the women’s hoops squad at Dorsey High School in Los Angeles took time out to answer my 5 questions:

1. What got you to be passionate about coaching basketball?
After playing at Dorsey for two years I tore my acl and was told I would never play again. Well, I did and I earned a scholarship. I went against the odds... and there my passion began...

2. Why do you think women's basketball is not as prominent as men's? What do you think it would take to get it to that level?
I believe it is and it will continue to grow! The women are getting stronger and many can dunk...on a ten foot court…

3. How important is participation in team sports for an individual’s development?
It creates a person’s social skills and develops a person to work well with others.

4. What else are you passionate about in your life?
Helping people find and understand God in their lives

5. What advice would you give to young girls who dream of being athletes?
Keep dreaming and if you believe it you can achieve it! Success is waiting!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Shaolin Soccer Movie Review - rent this sports movie!!

If you have never watched a Stephen Chow film, you are missing out! I was first turned on to him with "Kung Fu Hustle" and was an instant fan. Last week I was fortunate enough to see a screening of his latest film, CJ7, and it was equally impressive (Opens March 7, 2008 in NY and LA). This was an especially awesome screening since Stephen Chow and Jiao Xu were there afterward for a Q&A session! One question that was asked of Stephen Chow was whether there would be a sequel to "Shaolin Soccer". He replied there wouldn't since he does not have the copyright! I was then reminded I had not seen this film so I promptly rented it.

You must rent this! If you are a fan of Chow's it has all the necessary ingredients. Funny, over-the-top human ability coupled with tongue-in-cheek situations. The characters are all overdone and you'll recognize many of them from his other films.

You'll want more, so go see "CJ7" if you can on March 7th and rent "Kung Fu Hustle". According to IMDB there will be a "Kung Fu Hustle 2" released in 2010.

Manchester United defeats Newcastle United 5-1 - UPDATED

Manchester United defeated Newcastle United today by a score of 5-1. Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney each scored two goals in the victory. One journalist summed up Newcastle's performance as "clueless". Man U is second in the standings with Arsenal at number 1.

August 10, 2008 Update - as you all know, Man U won the Champions League for the year and the new season of the Premiership is getting ready to start. Ronaldo is staying with Man U for the time being and Rooney is likely to miss the start of the season with the flu.

This seems to be one of the most popular landing pages for my site so I thought I would add a little bit more for all of you to check out. How about this cool video of Ronaldinho vs. Ronaldo:

Thanks for visiting and check out more of my footballer-type posts:

Homeless World Cup

GolTV's Phil Shoen

Street Soccer Coaches

Welcome! Let's blog about sports!

Thank you for stopping by! I will be adding my rants about sports here from time to time. I don't discriminate either - you name the sport and I likely cover it! I'll be posting about NFL, MLB, NBA, Premier League, MLS, NCAA sports, PGA, LPGA, and all the local Southern California stuff I can find! I also talk about action sports, Olympics, and just about anything else you can think of. Bookmark me and send your comments! Thank you!