Wednesday, July 13, 2011

ESPN Does It Again...

ESPN has the reputation of having dickhead commentators say stupid, insensitive and insulting things all the time and they as a network usually do nothing about it. They have the biggest assortment of useless, neanderthal, fuckface sports writers television has ever seen. This time, the offending asshole du jour is eminent columnist and Twitter twat Michael Smith. I only know this cat from his occasional appearances on "Around The Horn", a half-hour show hosted by Tony Reali. Smith appears on this program with fellow obnoxious windbag Woody Paige. Judging by their attitude towards professional cycling I would give almost anything to see these pricks getting slammed by a car into a barbed-wire fence while doing 30-plus on a bike just so they can see how it tastes.

During a stage of the Tour, an as-yet-to-be identified driver of a car attempted to screech past the day's breakaway and sideswiped a couple of riders, causing some terrible injuries. The riders who were taken out miraculously rejoined the race and finished the day's stage. Their heroism should not go unnoticed. As a cycling enthusiast who has endured three crashes resulting from driver negligence, I cannot tell you how angry I was when a few days ago Michael Smith had the audacity to find this horrific crash funny, and said so on the air.

He then went on Twitter and reiterated his Cro Magnon stance. After the comments against his statements became a flood of vitriol, he offered a half-assed apology that seemed forced, sort of like when the school bully gets pulled into the principal's office to say sorry to the parents of one of the nerdy geeks people like that love terrorizing.

Does Smith deserve to get fired? Yes. Will he? No. Because his comments were actually a step above the usual sports talk blather, and no one at ESPN gives a flying fuck about cycling. They don't consider it s sport, not like basketball, football, hockey or golf. These guys are all the same-they try to make a name for themselves by cozying up to the jocks that America loves to curry favor from them in the form of interviews and access into their gilded lives. They can say what they want about cycling because to them cycling never fit in to the arrogant-jock template these cocksuckers worship.

Team Radio Shack rider Janez Brajkovic crashing out of the Tour-
This year's Tour happened to be extraordinarily brutal for many riders, domestiques and top-10 contenders alike. Quite a few teams lost their leading horses to terrible injuries. Astana's Alexandre Vinokourov broke his femur and pelvis and will retire this season. Radio Shack lost Chris Horner, Andreas Kloden and their young Slovenian hopeful Janez Brajkovic. Alberto Contador crashed four times, badly hurt his knee and was unable to fight back form all the time he lost in the first week.

But it was the sensational crash of lesser-known rider Johnny Hoogerland during a breakaway in stage 9 that made worldwide headlines, for no other reason than pure sensationalism. This poor guy was ridden completely off the road by a car carrying some idiot who isn't even part of the Tour organization. Supposedly the driver was trying to avoid a tree and swerved into a 5-man breakaway, clipped Spanish rider Juan Antonio Flecha into Hoogerland and then sped off without so much as an apology afterwards. Here is the dreadful video of this crackhead maneuver-

This is the accident Michael Smith of ES-fucking-PN thought was so hilarious-

And here are the gruesome photos of the hapless Hoogerland and the damage done to him. Keep in mind he flew into a barbed wire fence wearing nothing but his lycra cycling uniform while hauling ass at 30-plus miles an hour-

The above photo is of Hoogerland trying to extricate himself from the barbed wire fence. The middle photo is the rider patched up by Tour medical personnel who managed to get him back on his bike to finish the stage, albeit 17 minutes down. The photo directly below is Hoogerland, 33 stitches later, on his way to start the next day's stage. Truly heroic. This is what Michael Smith got such a huge guffaw out of. Not only that, his cohort on "Around the Horn", the stumbling, bumbling career alcoholic and serial groper Wood Paige (yes, he was accused of inappropriate behavior towards a female staff member at some stupid morning show called "Cold Pizza" a few years ago) had the audacity to say these types of crashes aren't all that serious because the riders always get up and finish the stage.

Paige is only halfway right. Many cats get up from these types of horrific crashes not because their injuries aren't terrible, but because these so-called skinny geeks clad in tight lycra are some of the toughest motherfucking athletes on the face of the Earth. And as for the injuries they suffer on crashes not being all that serious, Woody, you hyper-inebriated dingleberry, this isn't always the case.

We had one rider die at this year's Giro D'Italia, Belgian Wouter Weylandt of Team Leopard. How many of this poor rider's friends and loved ones wish he could have walked away from his crash? Colombian cyclist Juan Mauricio Soler sustained severe brain injuries at this year's Tour of Switzerland, and has been hospitalized ever since. The poor guy may never live a normal life ever again, yet this is what these assholes at ESPN ridicule whenever pro cycling is brought up in the North American press.

Fuck you, ESPN. And as for Michael Smith, may a thousand camels with fully erect penises pay oral, vaginal and rectal homage to your wife, who defended your statements, further perpetrating the belief that it's OK to laugh at people in a sport you consider a joke.

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