A Sports Fan Speaks  

The envelope please...

Thankfully, I once again managed to completely avoid watching the Oscars in favour of the final of the Scotties Tournament of Hearts but let’s see if I got the gist of it – 4 hours of pre-game Red Carpet coverage and extensive interviews of pseudo-celebs attired in some animal print concoction by Dolce Channel Armani, endless Seth McFarlane un-funnies that appear to be written by the creators of Mike & Molly, Jack Nicholson in dark shades sound asleep, several speeches that thank the talented losers, Steven Spielberg gets shafted again, a dearly departed honour roll, Barbara Streisand sings something memorable and we fade to black… How’d I do? So for all of you who had the misfortune to sit through the Annual Hollywood Drivel Fest, allow me to present the semi-topical, sport-sensitive Commish Awards which will, at least for now, provide a Lance Armstrong-sized testosterone shot to combat the all-encompassing Tour de Talk Show discussions of Anne Hathaway’s dress.

Best Supporting Actress: Danica Patrick takes the award in a landslide. Few sporting events have the pre-amble and lead-up of the Daytona 500 but the endless hours of discussion of Patrick’s romantic relationship with fellow driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and her Pole Award - *stripper joke deleted* - left most spectator’s almost immune to the fact that, having driven a very solid and safe race, the final lap saw the NASCAR veterans freeze her out and she coasted over the finish line in 8th place. It was a definitive statement to her and her team – even high profile rookies, gender regardless, have dues to pay on the track. Other nominees included Oprah Winfrey for her ‘hard-hitting’ journalistic interview of Lance and Liz Carmouche for her role in the Rhonda Rousey Show by director Dana White.

Best Actress: The only award to receive 100% of the votes and it goes of course to Ronaiah Tuiasosopo for his ground-breaking, gender-bending role as the love of Mante’I Teo’s life, Lennay Kekua. Although the parallels can be drawn to Dustin Hoffman’s “Tootsie” and the 2010 classic “Catfish” Tuiasosopo’s dedication to the craft and immersion in to the persona almost completely makes one forget the sheer stupidity of the Notre Dame linebacker. Yes folks, 18-20 NFL teams have apparently still expressed 1st Round interest in Teo leading me to believe that Forrest Gump’s mama may well have been right – “stupid is as stupid does.”

Best Supporting Actor: This was an incredibly difficult category but the Commish Award finally went to Joe Flacco’s agent Joe Linta who continues to sell the idea that the Ravens QB has as many Championships as Drew Brees and Peyton Manning who make $18M and $20M annually respectively and as a bonus is only 28. What the man says is true – of course what is also true is that he has the same number of Championships as Trent Dilfer, Doug Williams and Brad Johnson and we may very well see the Ravens franchise tag Mr. Flacco for the 2013 season which would pay him in the region of some $14.6M and then see what the Draft brings. The plot continues to thicken. Other nominees here included Jack Harbaugh for the sheer number of times ESPN interviewed him and Hilton Botha for his incredible impersonation of Inspector Clouseau in the initial investigation at the Pistorius crime scene – this may well have been an Academy snub.

Best Actor: This was without doubt the deepest category with so many great choices. Tim Tebow still has the ESPN vote in a very creepy Harvey Weinstein “Shakespeare In Love” beats “Saving Private Ryan” kind of way, Oscar Pistorius deserves mention for his tragic Tarentino-style telling of “Love and a .45” and of course Mante’I Teo who has proven the Kirk Lazarus (“Tropic Thunder”) mantra on acting completely wrong and like Tugg Speedman goes full-on Simple Jack. But the winner has to be Lance Armstrong here and this really is a Lifetime Achievement Award of sorts. His decision to tell truths about lies and actions no longer punishable due to statutes of limitations – and to Oprah no less - and to continue to not co-operate with WADA or USADA is a level of villainy not seen since Heath Ledger reinvented the Joker. Yes Lance, chaos most definitely is fair…

Best Director: With a very late polling surge PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem squeaks out a win for his announcement that the Tour does not support the anchoring ban suggested by both the R&A and USGA and this sets up the possibility that if the governing bodies stick to their positions the Tour may very well play by a different set of rules than the rest of the world of golf. So… in the 4 Majors both the US Open and British will not allow anchoring and the Men of the Masters will most likely follow their lead, leaving the PGA alone as the Belly Putting Championship of golf and giving the sport the level of functionality most often associated with the world of boxing. The lobbying of special interest club manufacturers no doubt won this for Finchem over pre-Award favorite Gary Bettman and his unique take on labour relations in a post-Curt Flood world.

Best Movie: The Academy, facing an extremely varied and difficult choice in this category, opted for a surprisingly high budget story with minimal release… a story of young love and money, of mentorship and dreams dashed, of personal growth on the public stage and of risking it all on the flip of a coin. It is of course “Goalie”, directed by Mike Gillis and is the epic saga of one man’s inability to correctly assess the value in the people around him and his failure to consequentially allow them to flourish. The sound track too is spectacular and is highlighted by Alain Vigneault’s mournful version of “Torn Between Two Lovers”. The only criticism is that the story seems a tad contrived towards the end, as if we are to expect a Part 2.

Unfortunately Kelowna, my time in the fair Okanagan is waning and we shall have but one more meeting so until next week…

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About the Author

Sean McEachern is above all else a Sports Fan. Originally from Ottawa, Sean was educated at Strathallan School in Scotland. A former golf professional and graduate of the San Diego Golf Academy, Sean and his fiancee settled in Kelowna in 2010. A hospitality industry 'lifer', Sean is a sports trivia enthusiast and discussionist and is currently a staff writer at www.freethesportsman.com and at Okanagan Collection magazine. Sean recently welcomed his daughter Keira to the world on July 27th. 

Follow Sean on Twitter @sportsfanspeaks and feel free to comment on any stories at www.asportsfanspeaks.com.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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