It’s been awhile since I’ve had visit the Corner of Controversy and Criticism, but there are some things that need to be addressed that have been weighing heavily on my mind. Baseball season has started with some big stories, there are problems in the UFC, and Lebron James arrogance may have reached an all time high. Baseball season started back up two weeks ago and the biggest story right now would Shohei Ohtani has become an absolute sensation as dual threat. It’s been many years since a player was outstanding at both pitching and batting. Ohtani has 2 wins with a 2.08 ERA, and on the other side of things he his batting .389 with 3 HR and 7 RBI. I firmly believe he could win Rookie of the Year, MVP and Cy Young if he puts up the numbers that everyone is projecting that he could put up. One person who is not off to a great start is Giancarlo Stanton with the New York Yankees. He hit two Home Runs in the first game of the season, but he struck out sixteen times in one week. The New York atmosphere is a very tough crowd to deal with if you are struggling there. I have no doubts Stanton will come around, but for now he’s going to have to tune out the criticism. It’s very hard to stay focused and humble when you’re in a New York State of Mind.
One person who is anything but humble these days is Lebron James. In his last game at Madison Garden this season he wore shoes that said “I’m King” on them. I understand that James has been the best player in the last decade but true greatness isn’t just about what you do on the court. It’s also about how you carry yourself off the court and what kind of message you’re sending to others. I would like to know what he is the king of. Is he the king of basketball? king of the sports world? king of Cleveland? True greatness is about staying humble and making those around him better, and neither one of those things has happened this year. Lebron has either pointed fingers or has had his teammates shipped out when they weren’t winning. This is why the comparisons to Michael Jordan really bother me, because they are completely invalid. In all the years I watched Michael Jordan I never say anything on his shoes that said he was great or he was better then everyone else. He did his talking on the court and made everyone else around him better. It’s been almost twenty years since MJ played with the Bulls and fans still remember who his teammates were. When Lebron is done playing are fans going to remember who is teammates were? What’s ironic about that statement is that Jordan played with the same core group of guys for the majority of his career with a few alterations. Lebron has either went to a different team or has had multiple teammates that he didn’t get a long. Maybe Lebron needs to focus on winning championships rather then what he puts on his shoes.
When it comes to focus, Conor McGregor really needs to refocus on his life and his career after his actions this past week. This past Thursday after the UFC 223 Press Conference McGregor stormed the Barclays Center with twenty of his buddies and attacked a bus full of fighters. His assaults were aimed at Khabib Nurmagomedov but hurt others in the process. Prior to this, Nurmagomedov had an altercation with one of McGregors teammates and it got somewhat physical. McGregor got word of it and flew from Ireland to NYC. When he attacked the bus he shattered a window which injured fighters Ray Borg and Michael Chiesa in the process. Both Borg and Chiesa were pulled from the card due to injuries, which left them without a fight and a paycheck to support them and their families. McGregor turned himself later on that night and awaits trial on June 14th. I truly believe that Dana White is partially to blame here because he has allowed McGregor to get away with a lot in the past. I feel like if McGregor doesn’t get severely punished then it’s setting a huge precedent that fighters can act this way and get away with. Conor McGregor has completely lost control and Dana White needs to get thing back under control so that an event like this never happens again.
I feel like UFC has been going down hill for quite some time now and this situation with McGregor hasn’t helped matters. In the last few years they have lost a lot of legendary big name fighters, lost Ronda Rousey and, has had issues with top stars like Brock Lesnar and Jon Jones. A few years back when UFC and Reebok made an exclusive deal it took a lot of money from the fighters in how they could be sponsored. The revenue split in UFC is terrible and taking away sponsorship money has hurt then fight industry. It’s because of this issue fighters have either went to Bellator, refuse to fight or have a fight with Floyd Mayweather. The problem Dana White and UFC has is that McGregor is their biggest drawing fighter right now. If they let him fight then what kind of message does that send to everyone else? If they let him go then how much interest in the UFC is going to be lost? I will be very curious to see what the UFC, Dana White and Conor McGregor does next.
It’s been a very eventful last two weeks. I haven’t had much time to think about the sports world because the pro wrestling has kept me very busy. Wrestlemania weekend kept me very busy, but now that it’s over expect me to get on the Corner of Controversy and Criticism more often. Until next time stay safe, be strong and remember that Controversy Doesn’t Come Without Criticism.