From sports to TV to politics (OK, so mostly the first two), we offer five hot topics that are sure to liven up your round of golf:
1. Wild-Card Weekend: The NFL Playoffs are back, and boy are there some fantastic matchups in its opening weekend. In fact, FiveThirtyEight ranks this crop of first-round road playoff teams as the best in recent history. Headlining that group, of course, are the Seattle Seahawks, who were one yard from being back-to-back Super Bowl champs and who begin their quest for a third consecutive trip to the big game at Minnesota. With my New York Giants out, I'm all aboard the Russell Wilson train again. The Magician just became the first player in NFL history to throw for 4,000 yards and 30 touchdowns while rushing for another 500 in the same season. His next trick? Winning in what is expected to be one of the coldest football games ever.
2. Tom Coughlin: Speaking of the Giants, it was sad to see the team's longtime coach
fired "step down." It became sadder when he ended his press conference by praising an emotional Eli Manning:
Wow. . . (*Wipes tears from eyes.) Is it too late to bring Tom back?!
And a note to fire-happy teams around the league: The Giants came close to booting Coughlin early in his tenure in New York, but stuck with him for 12 years. Their reward? Two Super Bowl titles.
3. Trump v. Jackson: A feud between a presidential candidate and an actor became national news this week when Samuel L. Jackson not only said The Donald cheats at golf (not news), but that he made him a dues-paying member at one of Trump's golf clubs without informing him -- and sent him a bill. Trump didn't just deny this, but said he didn't even know Jackson and insulted his work. Jackson posted the bill and got backing from fellow actor Anthony Anderson that the three had played golf and had lunch together. Trump then resorted to making fun of Jackson's swing. If Trump thinks he can say and do anything he wants now, imagine what he would be like as President?
4. The Kid goes to The Hall: Ken Griffey Jr. was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame on Wednesday with a record 99.3 percent of the vote. And deservingly so. From that majestic uppercut swing to the acrobatic, daredevil catches in centerfield, what a pleasure it was to watch this guy play the game, except of course when he was hitting home runs and robbing others of home runs against the Yankees -- which was often during his time in Seattle. I'll never forget, "An incredible catch by the Kid!" (:28 mark):
And here's a longer video of Jr.'s career highlights:
Oh yeah, congrats to Mike Piazza as well.
5. "Making A Murderer": Netflix's new true-crime docuseries that spans 10 years is fascinating, but it's also incredibly disturbing and sad. It's amazing how many people have told me they can't finish it because they find the case of Steven Avery and his nephew Brendan Dassey too depressing. I recommend watching it (It's only 10 hours so you can binge it in one weekend day!) and then reading everything you can about the shady murder investigation/trial to the point that it's all you think about and it keeps you up at night and gives you bad dreams. OK, maybe you should stick to those Griffey highlights. . .