It was 11:55 am on Saturday November 19, 2011. I was sitting at the world-famous Te Roma in Center Line, MI. Tobe and Bubba were with me and we were getting ready to watch Michigan play Nebraska in football. At that very moment I had no idea how that weekend would unfold. Michigan then proceeded to completely trounce the Nebraska Cornhuskers by a final score of 45-17. We had faith that our boys could pull off a win, but NOBODY saw that coming. Needless to say, the weekend started off with promise…
I figured it would slow up after that since I knew that I had a long day of homework still ahead of me. I dropped Bubba off at home and headed back to the palatial estate we commonly refer to as the “Bear Cave” (that’s a whole other story, fit for another day) to start working on this homework assignment. The plan was to later meet up with Tobe and Steiny at Buffalo Wild Wings to watch UFC 139. Problem was I struggled with the homework. So I decided to watch the fights at home while I attempted to finish the assignment. After reading the match list for the card I figured it would be a pretty good night of fights. Well once again I was shocked at the way things worked out. This was one of the best fight cards I have ever witnessed. Urijah Faber showed the dominance that the fans expect out of him, dismantling Brian Bowles and earning a rubber match with Dominic Cruz. In the co-main event, one of my all-time favorite fighters, Wanderlei ‘The Axe Murderer’ Silva showed the world that he still has some gas left in the tank by stopping the former Strikeforce Middleweight Champion Cung Le in impressive fashion. And finally, Dan Henderson and Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua put on an instant classic. 5 rounds of hold your breathe battling that had every fan on the edge of their seat with their muscles tensed up for 25 minutes. Quite possibly the best mixed martial arts fight of all time. Unbelievable! Dan Henderson won by unanimous decision and earned himself a title shot at age 41.
I forgot to mention that the Red Wings beat the Los Angeles Kings 4-1 on Saturday. Well They also beat the Anaheim Mighty Ducks on Sunday by a score of 4-2. All of these things combined would make for a great sports weekend in my world. All of this and I haven’t even mentioned the Lions yet.
Ugh… Same ol’ Lions. It is something that has been said around here for years. This year has been different. This team has shown signs of vast improvement and the metro Detroit area is buzzing over the possibility of a playoff football team. So I go over to my family’s house to watch the Lions play the Carolina Panthers with my dad and my brother. The game starts. We get the ball and Matt Stafford throws an interception. We get a quick turnover and Stafford throws another interception. Carolina (2-7 record at the time) starts to pour it on us. We were losing 10-0 after the first quarter and 27-14 at halftime. This was the first time all season I was actually thinking that we were witnessing S.O.L. (same ol’ Lions) all over again. Well something happened at halftime because they came out and lambasted the Panthers in the second half. Led by Stafford’s 5 touchdown passes and the returning Kevin Smith’s 140 yards rushing, the Lions won convincingly by a final of 49-35. Great weekend that wasn’t quite over.
Later on that evening, I went to Steiny’s house to watch WWE Survivor Series. Now I am not the wrestling fan that I used to be (I have UFC to blame for that) but it was a pretty decent show. I did get to see the in-ring return of one of my all-time favorite wrestlers – The Rock. So when I went to bed that night, I felt fulfilled in my love of sports and entertainment. BUT, this particular weekend got extended to include Monday afternoon.
Congrats to Justin Verlander who became the first pitcher to be named the AL MVP since Dennis Eckersley won it in 1992. This was announced Monday afternoon. Then the University of Michigan basketball team beat the #8 Memphis Tigers in the opening round of the Maui Invitational.
Needless to say, it has been a great few days in my world! For a man, it doesn’t get much better than this…