observations, reviews and ramblings about Hip-Hop culture, sports, politics and the industry and life in general.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Lance Armstrong

So I gotta put my two cents in on this Lance Armstrong situation.

First, let it be known I have been following the Tour de France long before yellow rubber bands were in style. Me and my mom (the great Beat-Rice, rip) somehow fell into it when I was 12 years old back in the Bronx. I think we were going through football withdrawal one summer and stumbled upon the Tour on channel 2. Back then it was all about Bernaud Hinault (or Renault) and then the 1st great American rider, Greg LeMonde. An American with a French last name, go figure.

Anyway, this talk about Lance being the greatest athlete of all time is ludicrous. Not because of what ignorant big mouths like ‘Screaming’ Stephen A. Smith claim (How did he get his own show, come on?). Cycling is a real sport and must be respected. However, besides the allegations of doping which I won’t get into, there is a tremendous hole in the Armstrong argument.

The Tour de France is the only race he rides all year. He is the greatest Tour de France rider, but to call him the greatest cyclist or (yikes!) greatest athlete of all time is simply negligent. I wonder how he would do if he participated in the annual circuit for the past 7 years.

Would you call Tiger the greatest golfer if he just played the Masters or if Serena only rocked at Wimbledon? Or if Jordan only played during the playoffs.

And the difference with comparing cycling and basketball or Lance and Mike is that athletes like Jordan never had the option of only participating in the biggest event of their sport. Elway had to grind it out during the regular season to get to his 2 straight Super Bowls. Shaq’s 3 straight titles were the culmination of three regular seasons AND three playoffs. Lance’s accomplishment is equivalent to skipping 7 regular seasons and showing up at 7 consecutive playoffs. If Shaq could rest the whole year and show up in Round 1, I am confident he would have 8 or 9 rings.

I think Lance executed a great marketing plan by focusing on cycling’s biggest sport and nothing else. He has secured his place in history, as well as millions of dollars. He has also used his fame and recognition to bring a renewed focus to cancer and health issues.

I’m not hatin’, I’m just sayin’

Tomorrow, ‘Who Remembers?”…


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right on. Let him try tour and giro on the same year and then we'll talk about who's the greatest.

July 25, 2005 4:30 PM


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