This is the time of year when things slow down a bit. The NBA Finals
are over ? thank God if you?re a Boston Celtics fan! The Stanley Cup
was hoisted on Friday night by the youngest captain ever to do so ? Sidney Crosby. And the Patriots will not take the field again until the end of July after the three-day minicamp last week. So what now?
In Boston, we have the Red Sox to keep us occupied, and so far they?re holding up their end of the bargain. Tim Wakefield
held the Marlins to just two runs last night, letting the Boston bats
take over. The Red Sox took the first game of the three-game set with
the Marlins 8-2. Before that, they swept the New York Yankees and
almost did the same over the weekend in Philly. It?s a fun time to be
watching the Red Sox each and every night.
What about the NHL draft next week? There?s another exciting moment
of the summer for hockey fans. In particular, it?ll be interesting to
see what changes the Bruins make. With the salary cap coming down next
season and many players still needing to be signed (anyone hear Phil Kessel?s name?), Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli
has little time to enjoy that new extension, because he has a full
plate of work to do. The draft will also set things up for the free
agency shopping spree on July 1.
And last but not least, my eyes will be fixated this weekend on the
U.S. Open. It?s one of golf?s majors, and it?s one of the most exciting
tournaments of the season. There are so many story lines heading into
this year?s event too. Most significantly, I will be looking forward to
seeing the New York fans at Bethpage welcome back Phil Mickelson, who will be playing in his 16th straight Open.
As you all probably know, Mickelson?s wife, Amy, was recently
diagnosed with breast cancer. Not only have the players on the PGA Tour
supported Lefty in their efforts to raise awareness, but the fans have
as well. This weekend, the Bethpage Black faithful will all be rooting
for Phil. Tiger Woods will unquestionably make the U.S. Open interesting, and guys like Jim Furyk, Geoff Ogilvy, Zach Johnson and Sergio Garcia
will present a challenge unlike any other. But it?ll be Phil Mickelson
who will have to dry an eye when the fans show their support. Golf?s
toughest test begins on Thursday.
So you see, while sports stories and headlines have somewhat quieted
down, there is still plenty to enjoy ? and for a guy like Phil
Mickelson, he?ll savor every moment of the upcoming four-day
tournament. Because after that, he?ll take time off to spend with his
wife and kids, realizing that life is short and it?s not always about
winning and losing.