Weekly Top 10 Sports News Headlines and Major Events: August 7, 2022
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This Week in Sports Talk (TWIST) is our weekly report on the big sports news headlines and major events, plus a preview of what’s up next. For August 7, 2022, here are the weekly top 10 sports news headlines to know: the big stories and major events in sports news this week in the NFL, MLB, tennis and more.
weekly top 10 big sports news headlines and major events: August 7, 2022
As a new week dawns, an audible buzz is emanating from our Sports Desk. NFL training camps are in full swing, scrimmages that are open to the public are underway, and as one of our resident sports experts puts it, “you can smell football in the air!”
Whether you’re counting down the days to the start of the NFL season, planning your outfits for the US Open, gearing up for the MLB postseason or getting stoked for college football games, it’s a fine time to be a fan. Personally, we’re more excited about the drop of a new version of Beyoncé’s hit “Break My Soul” featuring Madonna. But to each their own.
Here are 10 top headlines from the world of sports to know this Sunday.
1. MLB trades: Padres win the week
Our Sports Desk rates the biggest winners as the dust settles after Tuesday’s MLB Trade deadline.
As expected, the Washington Nationals traded their young phenom, Juan Soto, 23, after he turned down a 15-year, $440 million offer to stay in DC. Soto went to the San Diego Padres, making them the clear victor in the trade wars. The Padres also made deals for All-Star first baseman Josh Bell, All-Star closer Josh Hader and infielder Brandon Drury.
Meanwhile, the Boston Red Sox dealt some of their biggest names – generating speculation that they’ve thrown in the towel for the season.
As we reported last week, the New York Yankees made some moves, too. They strengthened their outfield with the addition of Andrew Benintedi from the Kansas City Royals. The Yanks’ bullpen will also be stronger, as they acquired pitcher Frankie Montas (who makes his debut with the team later today) and center fielder Harrison Bader.
Our Sports Desk notes that these were crucial moves for the Pinstripes. The LA Dodgers, New York Mets and now the Padres all loom as their potential World Series opponents.
2. MLB standings: Dodgers take the lead
The LA Dodgers (74-33) now have best record in baseball, with the New York Yankees (70-38) falling to second place. The Houston Astros (70-39) are only 1 game behind them.
In an important series between two NL West rivals, the “new look” San Diego Padres (61-49) and their new player Juan Soto faced the Dodgers Friday night for game 1 of a 3-game series this weekend. And LA dominated, with an 8-3 win. It was a sober reminder for Padres fans. As one commentator noted, “all roads in the NL West lead though the Dodgers.” Since the start of July, the Dodgers have won 26 of 31 games.
Meanwhile, back on the East Coast, the formerly first-place Yankees are 6 – 9 since the All Star break. Yesterday they played the St. Louis Cardinals on the road, facing a former teammate, pitcher Jordan Montgomery. They lost 1-0, and are currently on a season-high 4-game losing streak. They’re still 10.5 games ahead in their division. So there’s that, at least.
In stark contrast, the New York Mets (69-39) had a great day yesterday, winning both games in a day-night double header with their division rivals the Atlanta Braves. Max Scherzer tied a season high with 11 strikeouts in 7 innings in the night game. In the day game, Pete Alonso had three singles, including one with the bases loaded, to match Yankees star Aaron Judge for the MLB lead with 93 RBIs. This morning, the Mets are back on top of the NL East, ahead by 5.5 games. Even better news? Jacob deGrom will make his home debut at Citi Field later today.
3. Aaron Judge on pace for home run record
No matter what happens to the Yankees, their slugger Aaron Judge is having the season of a lifetime. He’s up to 93 RBIs, 89 runs scored, and 43 homers for the season – making him a clear candidate for American League MVP. He’s on pace to hit 66 homers this season, which would exceed Babe Ruth’s 60 and Roger Maris’s record of 61 in a single season.
Judge will be a free agent at the end of this season, and given his superior performance this season, some experts speculate that his next contract could exceed $300 million. In fact, the chatter is that the crosstown New York Mets may be angling to pick up Judge after the season ends. And why not? They’ve got deep pockets, and Judge is a New York darling. All rise!
4. Remembering Bill Russell and Vin Scully.
This week saw the passing of two Hall of Fame legends. Former NBA player Bill Russell died at the age of 88. He was the dominant player of his era, leading the Boston Celtics to 11 Championships. He earned 5 MVP awards, 2 NCAA Championships and an Olympic Gold medal. Importantly, Russell was also known as an activist for civil rights and social justice; he was a true leader on and off the basketball court.
This week also saw the passing of Vin Scully, the beloved broadcaster for the Dodgers. Incredibly, he played this role for 67 years, first from Brooklyn and then from LA. In a tribute at Dodgers Stadium this week, the crowd cheered his legacy, and the announcer noted that Scully was surely smiling down at the crowd from his perch in (Dodger) Blue Heaven. Rest in peace, gents.
5. Deshaun Watson gets 6-game suspension.
This week, a neutral arbitrator, former US District Court judge Sue Robinson, decreed that Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshawn Watson receive a 6-game suspension as a penalty for numerous allegations of sexual harassment and assault.
Many consider it to be an extremely light suspension – including NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who is appealing the decision (Robinson noted the “nonviolent” nature of the alleged violations). The league continues to be looking for at least a full year suspension, and Goodell gets to decide who will hear the appeal. The NFL Players Association will certainly try to defend the original suspension – so this could go on for some time. And in an ironic twist, if the case ends up in court, Watson could take the field in Week 1.
6. Djokovic and Nadal withdraw from Canadian Open
Novak Djokovic pulled out of the upcoming Canadian Open, due to his vaccination status. Canada requires all players to be vaccinated, so he can’t legally enter the country unless he wants a repeat of what went down in Australia earlier this year. Djokovic’s wife Jelena lashed out at a tennis magazine with a string of tweets after the publication called the player out for even registering for the Canadian Open (more on strong women as sports wives below). Djokovic remains hopeful that he’ll get an exception and be able to complete in the US Open later this month.
World No. 3 Rafael Nadal also announced on Friday that he won’t be playing in Montreal, stating that he felt “discomfort” during training session. After having to withdraw from Wimbledon due to injury, it’s probably prudent that he skip this Masters 1000 event, and focus on recovering in time for the US Open.
7. The rumors about Tom Brady were true!
Faithful readers will remember that several weeks ago, we reported that there was a story making the rounds about Tom Brady and the truth behind his retirement and subsequent “un-retirement.” Well . . . it turns out that all of those rumors are true. Brady did discuss joining the Miami Dolphins as a player – and becoming part of the ownership group, as well.
How do we know this? Because this week, following a 6-month investigation, the NFL announced sanctions on Miami and their owner, real estate magnate Stephen Ross, for tampering. Turns out the Dolphins were talking to Brady and head coach Sean Payton about leaving the Patriots and Saints, respectively.
Now, as a penalty for “violations of league policies relating to the integrity of the game,” Ross has been suspended for 6 months, and can’t be involved in football operations or seen on the field. He has also been fined $1.5 million. And the Dolphins have also lost their 1st round pick in the 2023 draft, and their 3rd round pick the following year.
Brady and Payton, however, were not penalized for their roles in this drama.
8. NFL preseason games
Thursday saw the first NFL preseason game. The Las Vegas Raiders, coached by the ex-Offensive Coordinator of the New England Patriots, scored a blow-out 27-11 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Injuries have already started to mount across the league, with the start of the season still almost a month away.
9. NBA Trade rumors
Several high-stakes conversations are underway regarding potential trades in the NBA. This week there’s a lot of focus on the play the New York Knicks are making for Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell.
The hang up? The young homegrown Knicks’ wing Quentin Grimes, 22. Even though he had a good but not stellar rookie season, the Knicks are determined to keep him on their roster. They’ve reportedly put Obi Toppin on the table, but are dug in on Grimes.
One sportswriter summarizes the situation succinctly: “The one player that [the Knicks] are trying not to put in the deal is Quentin Grimes. They don’t want Quentin Grimes in the deal under any circumstance. And the No. 1 player that the Jazz want in the deal is Quentin Grimes.” Watch this space for further updates.
10. Brittney Griner sentenced to 9 years.
In a continuation of the high stakes maneuvering between Russia and the United States, the trial of WNBA star Brittney Griner concluded this week with a sentence of 9 years for her alleged possession of cannabis oil while on Russian soil.
Reportedly, there are ongoing discussions about a prisoner exchange between the two countries. The conclusion of the trial may make those negotiations more likely to succeed. We are keeping BG and her fellow unlawfully detained captives in our prayers. Let’s hope we have good news to report soon.
Bonus round: strong women and sports stars
We close this week’s report with a meditation on the role of the wives and girlfriends of major sports stars. And no, we’re not talking about the “Wagatha Christie” trial between the soccer wives in the U.K.
This week American sportswriter Colin Cowherd (yep, that’s his real name) shared the sentiment “I like my athletes married to strong women.” He notes that the players who have wives and families seem to act more responsibly than their single peers. His hypothesis is that the superstars who win the big championships are always married to strong women. Whereas the bachelors (and presumably the men married to weak women) seem to do crazy stuff all the time, and are therefore more likely to fall short of winning the big titles. “Women hold us accountable,” he proclaimed.
This was perhaps a pointed response to comments from noted heartbreaker and bachelor Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rogers, who stated this week that he took the psychedelic drug DMT, and that the hallucinogen was the cause of his MVP wins in 2020 and 2021. Although we note that the litany of “crazy” athletes named by Cowherd other than Rodgers consisted exclusively of Black players (Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, James Harden and Kyler Murray). Perhaps Mr. Cowherd is himself single? ‘Cause that’s a pretty idiotic thing to do, and we don’t understand why his wife didn’t stop him from writing that.
Putting the writer and his issues to the side, though, is it the case that a strong wife is often the only person who can tell a star athlete to cut the crap (and do the dishes) when they appear to be heading for Crazytown? This implies that it’s the star male athletes choosing – and being obedient to – strong women. The further implication is, of course, that the highest and best role for these “strong” women is, in fact, to keep recalcitrant and easily distracted men in line. Seriously? Isn’t that what a parent is supposed to do for a small child? Perhaps all the star athletes have Mommy issues?
If you ask us, we think it’s far more likely that the smart and strong women are weeding out the clowns who don’t have the discipline and seriousness to win their respect and love. Like, really, what sentient woman (or man) would want to be yoked for life to Aaron Rodgers?
Which is the chicken, and which is the egg? Your call, dear reader.
Weekly Top sports news headlines and major events to know: August 7, 2022
That’s our take on the big sports news headlines and major events, and a preview of the week ahead, including what to know about football, tennis, baseball and more. We’re going to be taking a short hiatus here at Dandelion Chandelier – you know, it’s August, Martha’s Vineyard time, no WiFi at the beach. We’ll be back at the end of the month, refreshed and ready. Have a great week. See you soon.
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Pamela Thomas-Graham is the Founder & CEO of Dandelion Chandelier. A Detroit native, she has 3 Harvard degrees and has written 3 mystery novels. After serving as a senior corporate executive, CEO of CNBC and partner at McKinsey, she now serves on the boards of several tech companies. She’s all in with the Pats, the Warriors, the Red Sox and the Wolverines. Also Naomi and Coco. And Roger. She would like to thank her advisors on the Sports Desk, without whom this column definitely would not be possible.