The actual GAME has taken a back seat to politics this week.
Welcome to the Orlando Sports Weekly Rundown, I'm David Baumann.
Think about this...
Can you remember the result of any particular game this week?
Now... How about a couple of sporting events?
It's tough, right?
I honestly had a tough time with it.
That's because Donald Trump, the current President of the United States, and probably a tremendously bad golfer...
Even though he golfs A LOT...
More than a PGA Tour player...
Orlando Sports Weekly Rundown: Politics and Sports
...has interjected himself into the sports world.
Before I go into the details of why "Trump-and-Sports" is news now...
And why it doesn't have anything to do with his futile attempt to buy the Buffalo Bills... (sad!)
Nor is it about him bankrupting the USFL, a one-time professional football league... (also sad!)
Let me tell you some details about what's happening in the Orlando sports community.
The Orlando Magic hosted media day Monday.
The team is fresh off five straight losing seasons and isn't making any predictions about whether they'll make the playoffs or not this year.
The "We're going to make the playoffs this year!" strategy really backfired on them last year.
In MLS news, the Orlando City Soccer Lions have had a very difficult season, but they're playing better lately.
"Peaking at the wrong time," you could call it.
And the home crowd is really thinning out, as evidenced here from the Wednesday night game against New England, and it's somewhat alarming...
— Empty Seats Galore (@EmptySeatsPics) September 28, 2017
Gosh, that looks like a recent inauguration "crowd," doesn't it?
OK, now let's get back to the Monday Morning Quarterback POTUS.
Trump had some thoughts - the same thoughts his base has but has rarely said aloud, until NOW, now that they're emboldened - about NFL players who take a knee for the national anthem.
"Sons of bitches," he called them... indirectly referring to former 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick (and some other black athletes) last Friday night, not to any of their faces, but to a political rally in the reddest of the Deep South...
Kaepernick, a free agent, started kneeling for the Star Spangled Banner last year (when Barack Obama was President, I should add) to protest racial inequality and police brutality.
Kaepernick's mother responded to Trump's comments with this gem...
Guess that makes me a proud bitch!
— Teresa Kaepernick (@B4IleaveU) September 23, 2017
THEN, Saturday morning, Trump woke up to a Fox & Friends report about NBA Champion Steph Curry not wanting to visit the White House.
So Trump decided to break up with Curry before Curry could officially break up with him.
You know, like a 3rd-grader.
Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team.Stephen Curry is hesitating,therefore invitation is withdrawn!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017
That's the President of the United States going after a two-time league MVP -- and a guy who's been a shining star as not only a player, but as a great person and role model -- since his very first day in the NBA.
The response would be swift from Curry's colleagues.
LeBron James responded...
U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain't going! So therefore ain't no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!
— LeBron James (@KingJames) September 23, 2017
Trump didn't dare attack King James, not after the King's response tweet drew 1.5M "likes" and his, only 214K.
And Kobe Bryant responded...
A #POTUS whose name alone creates division and anger. Whose words inspire dissension and hatred can't possibly "Make America Great Again"
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) September 23, 2017
That really didn't go well for him, so Trump shifted his tiny attention span back to tweeting about the NFL players kneeling before the anthem on multiple occasions.
(He's at ~20 tweets about it and counting now... as I'm writing this column.)
All the while, Puerto Rico and its 3.5M American citizens was (and still is) experiencing a historic state of emergency after Hurricane Maria.
Jeez, were there any other significant sports events this past week?
- Aaron Hernandez' wife is suing the NFL because he apparently had "severe CTE"...
- There's a HUGE scandal that's rocking the NCAA. It cost Rick Pitino his job and has led to several arrests so far (probably just the tip of the iceberg)...
- Justin Timberlake appears to be set for a controversial return to the Super Bowl halftime show (no "wardrobe malfunctions" this time?)...
- Dwyane Wade signed with the LeBron's Cleveland Cavs...
- And Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees keeps smashing rookie records.
And for a further sum-up of Donald Trump's inaugural week in sports, here goes:
LeBron James called him a "bum."
Kobe said he can't possibly, "Make America Great Again."
More than 250 NFL players took a knee this weekend...
Many of them to simply oppose Trump's "Son of a bitch... he's fired!" statement.
But some kneeled with the original protest message still in mind: Racial inequality and police brutality.
Meanwhile, North Korea has nuclear capabilities and Kim Jong Un calls Trump a "Dotard."
Iran is also pissed at Trump.
People are dying in Puerto Rico.
The new Graham-Cassidy Trumpcare "plan" is an utter disaster.
The words "Believe me" have no meaning anymore.
And Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner apparently identifies as a female voter and uses a private email for official state business.
"But her emails!"
Good for Jared though.
David Baumann is a Sports Columnist for 407area.com and can be heard on EK Sports Tuesday Nights from 7-9pm on 96.9 The Game FM/740 The Game AM.