Some things never change and yet every time a reader grabs a newspaper there is a new champion being crowned or another aging superstar hanging up their jock straps or sports bras. I never seem to write about the athletes, who wear both, but a new decade is upon us and I can change how I dress but not how I write.
One thing you can count on is after every NFL Sunday, is the freak show that is Terrell Owens. While he moans about being neglected, his career stats continue to edge up into the rarest of air. He snuck into the top 10 in all-time receptions and yardage and currently rubs shoulders with normal humans like Jerry Rice. Writers feed on Owens like a crow on road kill.
Peyton Manning caught Dan Marino for games with over 300 yards passing and Tom Brady is creeping up the statistical ladder while breaking hearts with his GQ good looks. For the record, Brady has never been spotted in a sports bra. Yet.
The great rush end Reggie White played until the year 2000 then tragically passed away passing the torch to folks like ex B.C. Lion Cameron Wake. The Bears and Steelers define what it is like to have a tough defence during this decade with studs like Brian Urlacher leading the way.
On the topic of the CFL, Damon Allen played until his old age pension kicked in, finally retiring in 2007, but not before he owned most of the all-time quarterback numbers. Eskimo Ricky Ray suffered through a horrific 2010 season, but quietly climbs the list of pivots - especially in terms of accuracy numbers. Ray and the various Edmonton rosters won two Grey Cups over the decade, but Montreal appeared in a jaw-dropping eight of 10 cups over the same span winning in only three. The Riders lost two squeakers to the aforementioned Alouettes, but are the envy of the league simply because I say so. So do the 15,000 fans that follow them to every road game. Regina's sports guru Rob Vanstone would agree even if he happens to hate my work. Happy New Year Rob.
The NHL was a vision of parity with only Detroit winning more than one Stanley Cup. The league bid fond farewells to names like Chris Chelios and Brendan Shanahan - among others, but left to shine on like a timeless quasar is Nicholas Lidstrom.Super pest Claude Lemieux played until 2009 becoming the only NHL player to win rings for three separate teams. Ex-Habs are special aren't they?
In the MLB, the Yanks and Red Sox each won two World Series and clubs like Tampa Bay and Philadelphia emerged as annual contenders. Toronto sucked in every professional league that they had a franchise in, and with me constantly reminding you of that I have thus far not landed a column in any of their newspapers. If they offered, I'd have to say no.
Canada continues to improve on the world stage and is a legitimate force at the Winter Olympics, but sadly we have yet to discover a new Ben Johnson to embarrass us at the summer games. Our women's hockey program is so lethal that we might see the first female in an NHL locker room complete with a sports bra and with any luck - no jock strap. The dropping of the soap "routine" is soon to become as boring a column without a liquor reference.
Don't let time simply slip through your hands like the way a football did through both of my brother's butter fingers. Jerseys change and coaches come and go, but the passion and fire burns deep in the heart of every sports fan who has read headlines of Mickey Mantle and Sydney Crosby.
When you think about it, the sports section of your local publication is the only part worth reading. The classified section is a lost cause because of eBay and CNN has more bad news on one Wolf Blitzer program than your delicate senses can absorb in a decade. Sure, check the obituaries just to see if Brian Burke has committed Seppuku.
I will be your guide as we enter 2011 and will graciously accept any envelopes of un-marked wads of cash that you wish to forward my way.
Even a seeing eye dog needs Kibbles n' Bits.
The future is as bright as you let it be. As Sting once sang, "Let your soul be your pilot", but let me be your bookie. I'm already your favourite writer.
Talk to you in 2011 - God willin' and the creek don't rise.
God bless, sweet dreams, and thanks for reading. I probably have about 40 more years of columns to look forward to so don't feel that you need to scrapbook this one. There is more to come.
Happy New decade.