Flex is what the NRL did in Auckland last night, flexing their muscle, edging their elbows further away from their body. They did so because things are pretty competitive in our sporting market and with their season launch taking place in the city of sails, the NRL is now starting to show signs that they're keen on sweeping the competition.
It's obviously the perfect time to do so as Auckland is taken over by hooligans and terrible nuisance makers to celebration rugby league with the NRL Nines once again looking likely to go swell. But let's take a look a the bigger picture here; so we've got the Nines, we've got the season launch, but we've also got the Queensland Maroons starting a campaign to get more kiwi fans as well as a young kiwi lady getting a run with the whistle at the Nines and how could I forget the bid for another kiwi NRL team. I smell momentum.
How can you say anything negative about this?
Just on the second NRL team bid, it's good to see that the folks who are making the decisions here understand rugby league. Why? Because they know the importance of getting a team in the NSW Cup or the Intrust Super Cup (QLD) and they're doing what needs to be done to set up this pipeline to go with their NRL bid. I reckon any kiwi plan for an NRL team should have started with a NSW Cup or ISC team, just like what Papa New Guinea have done by entering the PNG Hunters in to the ISC (who went really well in their first season).
Great, get that pathway sorted, figure out how you can earn a few bucks from in a let's get more rugby league in Aotearoa! The Warriors will definitely say that everything's all good but it's hard to see them being chuffed with the idea of another team taking away their young talent, but meh.
Flex is what Anderson Silva's going to be pretty keen to do, but first he's got to show everyone that he's still the Spider after that ruthless leg break. Silva will fight Nick Diaz in UFC 183 with Diaz doing what Diaz does best as he's pulled a no show at a few UFC activities leading up to the fight. Let's be fair, Diaz will hold plenty of interest as he lingers around the UFC but the average fan is going to be taking note of Silva.
Will Silva be able to fight at the high level he's known for? Who knows, all the pre-fight stuff looks good from Silva but you never know until both fellas are in the octagon. Silva is getting on in age which makes this fight even weirder as a dude who is almost 40 years old is making a comeback. It should be at the very least an exciting fight as they both like to throw caution to the wind, but I've got a feeling that we could see something cray cray in this one. Also, the co-main event is a fight between Tyron Woodley and Kelvin Gastelum in the welterweight division. Woodley is 14-3, Gastelum is 10-0. You do the math, they're both pretty good.
The Hockey India League continues to dominate the hockey world with some razzle dazzle hockey being mixed in with some seriously ruthless tackles. These tackles are all coming from the local Indian lads who are giving the foreigners a taste of what hockey's like, or what 'real' hockey is like. As long as no one gets injured, it's gravy and it makes for a pretty awesome tournament as we're seeing some fucking awesome goals and rugged defence.
The Delhi Waveriders who house three kiwis in Simon Child, Steve Edwards and Andy Hayward currently sit last, but the defending champions have only played two games so far. They get a chance to get back on track pretty quickly as they face the Jaypee Punjab Warriors who currently sit in first. It's a big weekend for Delhi as they also face Dabang Mumbai who are one spot ahead of them so they could definitely make a move up the table if they can get a few points.
Unfortunately for us, the Punjab Warriors don't have any Black Sticks, just a whole lot of Aussies. The Ranchi Rays are in second and they have Nick Wilson, but they've played four games, the most out of any of the teams. The Rays also have Barry Middleton, an English battler who is smacking in goals from anywhere, it's beautiful. Despite sitting in fourth, the Kalinga Lancers are quickly emerging as my favourite team thanks to Ryan Archibald's amazingness. Cue fuzzy picture of Archibald/Jesus.
Luis Figo for FIFA president!? Fuck yeah, one of my top 5 footballers ever (Zinedine Zidane heads that list) looks to have been sucked in to the FIFA blackhole. Despite my love for Figo, it's hard to look past any of this without thinking that it's all just a feel good move for people to start to like FIFA. No FIFA, you're dumb. Figo, you're not dumb just stay out of trouble mate.