Build your own sports platforms

Realty-based sports competitors are going to have to build their own platforms too, now that men are allowed to declare themselves women and clean up in most sporting competitions:

‘For those of you who think I have ‘folded’ I have not. There’s a group of us working on getting the rules changed but we are going to fight it offline, not in the name-calling angry world of social media. I’m choosing to move on in a positive way,’ she wrote.

Dr McKinnon retweeted her commented and told her thousands of followers: ‘This is why the apology is not accepted: she still thinks what she said. She merely apologizes for being caught saying it publicly. She wants to ban trans women from competing. They will fail: the IOC openly allowed us in 2003 and revised their policies in 2015. #MoveOn.’

Adding that the women fighting her inclusion in the sport should face punishment for breaking the rules of USA Cycling, she shared that they had carried out the exact behaviour the rulebook states is not allowed.

‘I’ve been humiliated, they make me feel unwelcome at races, and saying that it’s unfair (when I follow all the rules) is degrading and disparaging,’ McKinnon tweeted.

Cycling isn’t the only sport McKinnon loves; she was a junior provincial badminton champion, regional junior golf champion and club champion, won sport climbing competitions and was a professional poker player for six years.

She started competing at a professional level when she was 10 years old.

Writing ‘Trans women are women. We must compete as women. We have rights, too,’ McKinnon later compared her struggle to civil rights racial struggles.

‘White people thought it was UNFAIR for black people to compete in sport. The very same tactics are being used against trans women athletes,’ she posted.

The Union Cycliste International responded Friday in a statement that shared how the rules consider hormone therapy over gender reassignment and that the guidelines will be clarified later on.

‘Although there are no queries concerning Women-Men (W-M) transgender athletes, whose situation – at UCI level as for all International Federations (IF) – is controlled by therapeutic use exemptions (TUE), the current situation concerns M-W transgenders,’ they wrote.

‘After some 18 months of substantial work, and after consultation with the IFs, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) should shortly announce guidelines covering the participation of M-W transgender athletes. This document should enable us to take into consideration, in line with the evolution of our society, the desire of these people to compete while at the same time guarantee as far as possible an equal chance for all participants in women’s competitions.

‘The UCI will adapt its regulations according to the guidelines of the IOC.’

“Trans women” are not women, they are parodies of women and there is literally nothing female about them. Anyone who says otherwise is a confirmed science denier. However, the convergence of the sporting associations means that the only way to stop this nonsense is not through changing the rules, or defining the guidelines more realistically, but by simply refusing to compete with any athletes competing in the wrong sex class.

I won’t be surprised to see mediocre heavyweights declaring themselves lightweights someday, as we’ve already seen men in their twenties playing in veteran’s leagues as well as individuals with IQs in the normal range pretending to be retarded and winning gold medals in the Paralympics.

Understand that forcing you to publicly declare that there are five lights is the entire point here. That’s why trans sports are one of the many false narratives presently being pushed by the Empire of Untruth.


Now WHERE have we seen that number before?

The NFL is down 17 percent in two years:

Consider the curious case of the National Football League: It’s the largest single entertainment property in the U.S., a $14 billion per year attention-sucking machine with a steady hold on the lives of tens of millions. And its future is now in widespread doubt.

Ratings for regular-season games fell 17 percent over the past two years, according to Nielsen, and after one week of play in the new season, viewership has been flat. February marked the third-straight year of audience decline for the Super Bowl and the smallest audience since 2009. Youth participation in tackle football, meanwhile, has declined by nearly 22 percent since 2012 in the face of an emerging scientific consensus that the game destroys the brains of its players. Once a straightforward Sunday diversion, the NFL has become a daily exercise in cognitive dissonance for fans and a hotly contested front in a culture war that no longer leaves space for non-combatants.

To many outside observers, this looks like the end of an era. “The NFL probably peaked two years ago,” says Andrew Zimbalist, a professor of economics at Smith College who specializes in the business of sports. “It’s basically treading water.”

I really need to finish writing Corporate Cancer. The NFL is on exactly the same track as NASCAR and Marvel. This indicates it will likely be down 50 percent within a decade of the 2016 viewership peak.



Breaking the duck

I didn’t score a single goal last season. After moving to the wing, I didn’t have as many chances and scoring wasn’t even one of my top three responsibilities, but even so, I failed to capitalize on the chances that I had. Which, at my age, understandably causes one to wonder if one has simply lost it. It does happen, after all. Our leading scorer over the last six years now scores about one-third as often as he did previously; now he more often scores on free kicks and set plays than in the open field.

We didn’t have either of our goalies for the second game of the season, so I volunteered to play in goal since our two starting attackers are the first and second options. I can play in goal reasonably well – we all occasionally take turns in practice – and unlike most European players I can catch, punt, and throw the ball, but my average height is deemed undesirable in a position where the normal keeper is 6’3″ or taller. My argument was that I’m less valuable on the field than either of them, but the captain decided to put our top scorer in goal and start me at attacker instead of on the wing. Two games at 50, two starts. Not bad!

It turned out to be the right decision, as I nearly got an assist very early on when I stole the ball from their number ten, pushed it forward, then pulled it back when one of our new players – who is a very skilled ballhandler – called for it at the top of the box. Unfortunately, the giant defender who was chasing me heard him and just managed to deflect my pass back enough to make him miss it. The defender was really good, because also he managed to keep me from breaking in on goal about a minute later by forcing me outside when I tried to blow right past him.

However, the speed of our right wing was killing them on their left side, as we kept putting on pressure with either a simple one-two out toward the line or a one-two-three where I would come back, take a pass from either a right-side defender or a midfielder to my left, then pass it diagonally forward behind the defense, and our right wing would beat both his guy and the defender and cross it. We both have speed, but he has more endurance and better skill, so it seems to work better with me at attacker and him on the wing than the other way around, which we’ve tried before. We came close several times, until finally he passed to the other striker, our captain, who was breaking into the middle, only the angle of the pass was too far behind him.

I was following the captain, figuring to follow up his shot if the goalie blocked it, and fortunately, the central defender was so focused on him as the intended target that he mostly missed the ball as it went behind him too. So, I ran on to it, pushed it left to prevent the defender from interfering, then fired back right with my left foot and caught the goalie moving the wrong way. Goal! 1-0. Our attacker who was playing keeper, saw the whole thing and told me later that he cringed when he realized I was going to shoot with my left foot, which he knows very well is NOT my shooting foot. Fortunately, his reasonable expectations were defied by the result.

I took myself out about 10 minutes later, and felt quite justified in having done so when the defender who had been chasing me all over the place immediately followed suit. He told me on the sideline that he felt like he needed oxygen after all that running around. We controlled the game the rest of the half, but missed a penalty kick and so failed to put it away. I went back in to start the second half, but was mostly ineffective with the exception of one long breakaway that won a corner. After I went out again, their goalie bailed them out on great saves of two near-lethal shots from our midfielders, but finally our right wing managed to blow past the left defender and put what I initially thought was a low cross into the far side of the net. 2-0 and that was the game.

I expect I’ll be back on the left wing next week, and I’ll be perfectly happy to play there seeing as that’s probably where I can best help the team. But it’s encouraging to know that, as one of our players said, if even our oldest, least-skilled players are legitimate scoring threats, our opponents can’t focus on shutting anyone down.


Not even close to done

So, I spent my 50th birthday on the soccer field. As it was our last practice before our first game, pretty much everyone was there and our captain was relentless. We played for nearly two hours, in the heat, with only two short water breaks of about 3-4 minutes each.

I’ve found that I hit the first level of fatigue now almost immediately. It creates a challenge because I hit it about 10-15 minutes before everyone else given that my teammates can be as much as 20 years younger. So, I’ve learned to play in energy conservation mode from the start, which helps me get past that initial period of danger without anyone being the wiser. I’m also diligent about taking my guy out of the play by positioning so his teammates don’t pass to him, and demoralizing him by demonstrating that he can’t get past me the first couple of times that he tries to make a run. A little energy expenditure early can save a lot for the rest of the game, because a guy who doesn’t believe he can get past you doesn’t even try. Plus it tends to make him wary of getting caught out of position when you make a run and drop back deeper into his own end.

On the positive side, once everyone is fully fatigued in the second half, I tend to have an advantage because I’m so much more accustomed to dealing with it. My side was down 6-4 when I beat the opposing wing down the side to earn a corner, took the corner kick, and our defensive midfielder scored on the header. Then, about two minutes later, we had another attack and I made a long run to anticipate following the shot. The opposing goalie saved it, but couldn’t hang onto it, and I put the rebound into the net. 6-6. I couldn’t help but laugh after that, because as we jogged back to our side, one of our midfielders pointed at me and shouted, “How old are you again? How old are you?”

Afterwards, Spacebunny showed up with caramel-chocolate brownies, chilled cava, and a single sad, warm beer. Never mind the latter, it’s a family joke. Not the most typical of birthday celebrations, but we all had a good time and it definitely beat the birthday at the fish farm decades ago.

At the game, I was pleased to discover that I’d managed to hold on to my starting spot on the left wing, although we got off to a bad start against the league’s best team, a team that hasn’t lost since we beat them three years ago, when they literally ping-ponged right through the center of our defense for an easy goal. But we didn’t quit; I got back in time to stuff a one-on-one with our keeper, then block a shot on a rebound, before making a long pass that led to a nice first goal from one of the center-mids. We got a second goal on a perfect free kick from our former captain, then I took myself out for one of the new guys.

I didn’t play as well in the second half, as we were under constant pressure, playing in a defensive shell against a much-superior technical team. Several of their guys still play for their club’s first team and they are very, very good. I did manage a few clearances, but also made two dangerous passes to the inside that could have gone badly wrong. We’re still a bit rusty, I think, because our attackers kept failing to pass the ball to the wings when we ran forward to support them, which was a real problem because every time they lost the ball, we found ourselves 30 meters out of position. Drives me crazy when they do that; if the wing comes forward on an open side, the attacker MUST pass him the ball in order to avoid giving a free side to the other team’s counterattack.

Anyhow, I put an awkward rebound shot over the goal after one of our attackers blew a pretty good opportunity, our best guy in the air missed a clean header on a corner, and we failed to put them away when we had the chance. The defending champions never gave up, and they managed to score the equalizer on a corner in the last minute after being awarded what felt like about 50 free kicks in the last 10 minutes. So, it finished 2-2, which was a really good result for us even though it felt disappointing given how we’d dominated the first half. It was certainly a better start to the season than I’d expected when I found out we’d be playing the three-time champions at their place to open it.


The benefits of immigration

Julia Ioffe@juliaioffe
This #WorldCup has been clear evidence that immigration has changed the “culture” of Europe—for the better.

Sabrina Siddiqui@SabrinaSiddiqui
Sixteen of the 23 players on France’s team come from families that recently immigrated to the country, most of them from Africa. Seven players are Muslim. A testament to how immigrants enrich a country’s culture.

They’re absolutely right. Congratulations to the World Cup-winning “French” team! The people of France must be so proud! From the Daily Meme Wars.

I saw one amusing aspect of this unseemly multiculti triumphalism when a member of my soccer club spoke to an African acquaintance after Nigeria and Senegal were both knocked out. The African said, not entirely without bitterness, “maybe an African nation could win a World Cup if the European teams didn’t keep stealing all our best players.”


Well, he is

The usual suspects are upset at an MMA champion acknowledging the obvious:

MMA fighter Conor McGregor has sparked outraged after labelling Vladimir Putin ‘one of the greatest leaders of our time’ after meeting him at the World Cup Final.

McGregor posted the inflammatory photo to his 24 million Instagram followers on Sunday showing him posing with the Russian top dog ahead of kick off at the Luzhniki Stadium.

In the photo’s caption, the multi-millionaire fighter said he was ‘honored to attend the event’ and said he had been invited as Putin’s personal guest.

But his antics didn’t go down all that well on social media, as several online commentators blasted him for accepting the invitation.

Remember, his critics are the kind of people who slavered over Stalin and Hitler back in their day. But what world leader seriously compares to the likes of Putin, Xi, and the God Emperor? Merkel? May? Trudeau?

The eight years of unmitigated failure known as Obama?


Lame

I’m pulling for Croatia, but expect France to win on the basis of being better and more rested.

UPDATE: Horrible refereeing today. Griezman takes a dive, wins a free kick, and scores on an own goal off a defender’s head. Croatia answers with a beautiful team goal, only to have the referee hand France a penalty on an obviously non-deliberate hand ball.
It’s not that hard. If the hands aren’t waving around or being used to control the ball, it’s not a foul. This is the first time the VAR system really seems to have gone wrong.

Semifinals Day 2

Normally, I would expect Croatia to beat England and go on to face France in the final. They are definitely the better team. But they look absolutely exhausted from their quarterfinal game and made three unforced errors in the first seven minutes, passes to no one, the sort of thing you do when you’re tired and you’re not all there.

And with England scoring on a great free kick by Trippier inside the first five minutes, it’s going to be tough for them to pull it together against a fresher, faster England team. The interesting thing is going to be in the last thirty minutes, when England is tired too and Croatia’s superior skill begins to show.

UPDATE: As I anticipated, once England’s fitness advantage wore off, Croatia’s skill began to tell. 1-1 after 90 minutes, and Croatia has all its subs. Given that furious ten minutes between the 75th minute and the 85th minute, England is fortunate to still be in it. And Croatia’s subs will be better players than England’s two subs. I don’t expect this to go to penalties; it wouldn’t surprise me if Croatia manages two goals in extra time.

POSTMORTEM: England rode a much easier route to the semifinal and it showed in their relative energy in the first half compared to an exhausted Croatia team. But once their wings and strikers weren’t able to run past the more experienced Croatian defenders with impunity, the English attack all but disappeared. Also, whoever was on England’s left wing was a complete disaster defensively, as he wasn’t tracking back to help cover the Croatian defender who caused complete havoc for most of the second half. This game wasn’t as close as it appeared; without Pickford’s heroics and with a bounce or two going Croatia’s way, it could have easily finished 4-1.

England has nothing to be ashamed of. Vardy’s injury hurt them worse than most people realized – he’s their true scorer – and I really like the way Gareth Southgate managed to his team’s strengths and improved their set plays and penalties. He has the makings of a top flight manager and it won’t surprise me if he moves on to a big club when he is ready to move on.

But the final outcome was never seriously in doubt after the first 20 minutes. Consider the key match stats in favor of Croatia.

Shots: 22-11
Shots on goal: 7-1
Final score: 2-1

I’ve personally done the research. In every league, shots on goal is the most reliable statistical indicator of wins. If you want to win, you have to put shots on goal. The goalie seldom blocks them all, and even when he does, rebounds lead to easy goals. Croatia did. England didn’t.


Darkstream: burning down the NFL

From the transcript of the Darkstream:

This big lead column on Monday Morning Quarterback is written by Jenny Vrentas. Now there are women who know about football, there are female sports writers who understand the game, but one thing that you’ll notice about SJWs in general, and female SJWs in particular, is that they have no interest in the actual topic that they’re supposed to be covering. All they want to do is either talk about politics or people, because that’s the only thing that they’re interested in….

There’s a whole section on NYC Pride and NFL pride, how this is the first time that the NFL has sponsored the Pride Parade in New York City. So it’s not enough it’s not enough that they are attempting to push migration, and they’re attempting to push social activism and support the flag protests, but now they’re also trying to push homosexuality, using the league to do this, and so what we’re seeing here is that SJWs in the media are shameless about using any organization with influence, with power, with the microphone to push their own social justice agenda.

Now there is no planet on which you can claim that this is going to be good for the NFL now, and so we can blame the NFL, we can blame FIFA, for all the idiot SJW BS they’ve been pushing, but what’s astonishing is the way in which the NFL and other organizations allow SJWs in the media to push this. They allow themselves to be used by outside organizations, to push those outside organizations’ social justice ideals to their own detriment. There is absolutely no question that the more they push migrants, the more they push gays, the more they push flag protests, the more people that are going to abandon the NFL.

What’s killing the NFL is not so much the people who are turning it off, although that is definitely hurting them, what’s absolutely killing them is people like me just dialing it down a few notches, you know, because I don’t follow it as closely as I used to as when I had the NFL Game Pass. Because I’d always watch every Vikings game and I wasn’t the only one in the house who would do so. Now, you know, if there’s a free game on the TV, I’ll watch that. I’m not a fanatic about about this stuff, I’m just not willing to spend 100 bucks or 120 bucks or whatever it is. I’m just not willing to do that anymore, and if you look at other people who are doing the same thing – and many many other people are doing the same thing – the net effect of that is tremendously negative.

You can already tell the NFL is not going to make it’s 10-year growth goals because they lost so much traction last year, and that’s assuming that they’re able to start recovering this year, but based on what we’re seeing from the media, I very much doubt that’s going to happen. When NASCAR first went SJW, it lost about the same 10-15 percent the first year, and of course they doubled down, and they were certain that they were going to come back from it, but NASCAR television ratings and track attendance is now down as much as 50 percent. It might even be more than 50 percent this year,
and so I think the same thing is going to happen to the NFL. I think it’s going to be a shock to a lot of people, especially people in the media who have been denying that their SJW infestation is the cause of their problems.

In light of this, consider this “let’s you and him fight” piece written by a particularly stupid SJW at Sports Illustrated.

The NFL has a choice. It can continue to fashion its responses to the whims of a president whose appetite for conflict and controversy is so limitless that the NFL will be forced into embarrassing concession after embarrassing concession while alienating its highest-profile employees, who have every right to believe themselves jerked around on an issue that is of paramount importance to them.

Or it can follow the example set a century ago by the GAA. It can resist.

It can rescind its failed policy, which only will continue to fail in embarrassing ways. It can return to the status quo ante—basically, just allowing players to do what they will and then stand the gaff no matter what the origin of said gaff. The problems the NFL is having with its TV ratings have little or nothing to do with what the players do while half the stadium is under the stands, loading up for the first quarter, no matter what the talking points of the day say.

NN Taleb is right. Never pay any attention to the advice given by anyone without material skin in the game.