bad sports, good sports

Bad sports, good sports: Kellen Winslow continues to prove himself to be a thug

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Just like the average population, professional athletes seem to have their fair share of bad guys. There are good people that mess up and do bad things, and there are bad people that manage to occasionally pull off a nice act. After those folks, we find the bad guys who are just simply bad guys, people who consistently prove that they would certainly not be in any position to receive anyone’s adulation or admiration were it not for their athletic skill. Kellen Winslow II, who was recently traded from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to the Seattle Seahawks, is one of those guys.

Winslow is the son of NFL Hall-of-Famer Kellen Winslow, a player who is widely regarded as the greatest pass-catching tight end in league history. He had an incredible career, and to my knowledge, he was never a troublemaker of any kind. His son is a different story. He attended the University of Miami early in the last decade, a time when that football program was still in the midst of firming up its reputation as Thug U. In an interview after a loss to Tennessee, Winslow profanely compared himself to a soldier. He was ripped for his statements, and he did apologize for them later. He was drafted sixth overall in the 2004 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns, but he broke his leg early in his rookie season and missed most of that year. He then managed to miss his entire second year as well after crashing on a motorcycle. Winslow’s contract actually expressly forbid him to ride a motorcycle, but I guess that did not count for much. He flew over the handlebars, losing the helmet he had on his head but had not bothered to strap on, and landed on the ground, tearing the ACL in his right knee in the process. Earlier this year, after being traded to the Seahawks, Winslow was sued for $133,000 for allegedly trashing a home he was renting in the San Diego area. That suit is still pending.

This week, someone asked Winslow about his time in Tampa Bay with new Bucs coach Greg Schiano. Here is what this genius had to say:

“Real [bleep?] Schiano came over there, uh, [bleeping?] ‘TOES ON THE LINE! TOES ON THE LINE!’ Blowing the whistle. You can’t laugh. You can’t joke around. So I decided not to go to OTAs,” Winslow said. “You know they got my man Ra [former coach Raheem Morris] out of there, and I was loyal to him. Woulda take a bullet for that dude. So I had to roll, man.”

Aside from the total mangling of the English language, I wonder if this guy knows he is being paid many millions of dollars to play football. He was being asked to take his job seriously and that was a problem, I guess. Raheem Morris was fired for having four or fewer wins in two of the three seasons in which he was the head coach in Tampa. His additional comments about the team having fired the wrong guy, and his statements about how misunderstood he is just help to prove my point. This is just a bad guy. The Seahawks had better hope his play on the field can offset the baggage they are getting along with this player.

Bad sports, continued:

2) Khalif Wyatt, a guard for the Temple Owls, is someone whose name always catches my eye when it appears in sports news, because he played high school basketball at the school where my wife teaches. He is a hell of a player, but he appears to have some questionable judgment. He was arrested in Atlantic City last weekend in a prostitution sting. He was there celebrating his 21st birthday.

3) Fifteen people were injured during violent outbreaks surrounding Poland’s match with Russia at the Euro 2012 competition in Warsaw.

4) NBA Commissioner David Stern took exception to a line of questioning by antagonistic talk show host Jim Rome on Rome’s radio show on Wednesday. The questions involved the suggestion that the NBA Draft Lottery could be fixed, as some have suggested. Stern fired back with “Have you stopped beating your wife yet?” in an attempt to show that there was no way to answer the question the way Rome had posed it. Still, there was probably a better way for the commissioner to make his point.

5) Someone thought it was a good idea to invite Adam “Pacman” Jones to speak at the NFL Rookie Symposium that will happen next week. He plans to talk about how to avoid the mistakes he has made since he has been in the league. In a related story, Jones was ordered to pay $11 million to a couple of employees of a Las Vegas strip club where a shooting occurred in 2007 after Jones was kicked out of the club. Pacman was not the shooter, but the man who was said that he was doing it at Jones’ bidding.

6) A couple of weeks after being gifted with a missed call that enabled Johan Santana to pitch the first no-hitter in Mets history, the team filed an appeal to try to get R.A. Dickey’s one-hitter turned into a no-hitter. The appeal was correctly denied.

7) Former NFL player Kevin Ellison, now playing in the Arena Football League, was arrested this week after he caused a fire in his Washington apartment by smoking pot in bed. When asked about the incident, he initially told police he set the fire because “God told him to.” Awesome.

8) Relief pitcher Brad Lidge was cut by the Washington Nationals on Sunday. This made me kind of sad, as Lidge’s perfect season as closer for the Phillies 2008 World Series winning team meant so much to that title and to me.

9) Tennis player David Nalbandian was disqualified from his match against Martin Cilic in London on Sunday after he kicked a court-side barrier that hit and cut the leg of a line judge.

Good sports:

1) San Francisco Giants pitcher Matt Cain pitched a perfect game on Wednesday against the Houston Astros. It is only the 22nd perfect game in league history.

2) Alvaro Quiros accomplished a very rare feat on Monday while playing a practice round before golf’s U.S. Open, which started Thursday. Quiros holed out on his tee shot on a par-4 hole at the Olympic Club in San Francisco. A three-under-par hole is known as an “albatross,” which would seem to suggest more of a negative connotation than you would expect for something like this.

3) Dale Earnhardt Jr. broke a winless streak thad had reached 143 races on Sunday, winning the Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway.

Bad sports, good sports appears every Monday

Alan Spoll is a software quality assurance director from the suburbs of Philadelphia where he lives with his wonderful wife and children. He has spent his entire life as a passionate fan of the Eagles, Phillies, Sixers, Flyers, and Penn State. Recent Phillies success aside, you will understand his natural negativity. Follow me on Twitter - @DocAlan02
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