So Sexy It Hurts, Dirk If Not Durant, & Catch Me If You Can.
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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Quick Hits
  • So Sexy It Hurts. The new ESPN "Body Issue," which features athletes posing in the buff and will be released the first week of July, includes (among others) UFC fighter Conor McGregor, MLB pitcher Jake Arrieta, and, for all you chubby-chasers out there, 325-pound NFL lineman Vince Wilfork.
  • In Denial. Golden State star Klay Thompson proclaimed "we're still the best team in the world," despite their NBA Finals loss as evidence to the contrary. They could be though, if they're able to corral free agent Kevin Durant, who's interested.
  • Dirk If Not Durant. If the Dubs can't rope in Durant, they could certainly make a play for Dallas Mavericks big white dude Dirk Nowitzki, who opted out of his contract yesterday. Is that Mark Cuban we hear crying in the distance? Elsewhere, Dwight "Sticky Hands" Howard opted out of his Rockets contract.
  • Free At Last. Swimmer Michael Phelps' 18-month probation for DUI has come to an end. Finally, we can unabashedly root for this booze-soaked hero at the Olympics now that he's legally been cleared from his own drunken buffoonery.
  • Hockey Polo. The 2016-17 NHL schedule has been released, which includes four outdoor games, with the first to be played when the Winnipeg Jets host the Edmonton Oilers in October. With Winnipeg October highs having hit 88 degrees in the past, we may see this outdoor game turn into a water polo match.

The Main Event
WHAT?
We'll borrow a famous line from former Arizona Cardinals coach Dennis Green to describe the United States men's national soccer team (USMNT); “they are who we thought they were.” That is to say, a squad that’s not ready to compete with a world-class soccer team. The USMNT got a giant serving of humble pie shoved down their throat in the form of a 4-0 loss to Argentina in last night’s Copa América Centenario semifinal match.

WHAT ELSE?
We knew it would be a long night when Argentina scored just three minutes into the game, and it only got worse from there. The USMNT looked like boys among men, giving up three more goals while getting very few looks of their own. One of Argentina's goals was an absolute stunner from Lionel Messi, who placed such a beautiful free kick (above) that a fan rushed onto the field before the start of the second half to literally bow at his feet. The shot was Messi’s 55th career international goal, which makes him Argentina’s top goal-scorer of all time. With the win, Argentina advances to the Copa América Final, while the USMNT will play the loser of tonight’s semifinal match (Colombia and Chile) in the third-place game on Saturday.

THOUGHTS?
At least the biff of the game didn't belong to the USMNT. That honor goes to Argentina forward Ezequiel Lavezzi, who flipped over a digital advertising board head-first while going for a ball that was well out of play. It was sad to see Lavezzi carted off the pitch, but watching his cartoonish tumble was literally the only time we smiled all game. For that, we thank him.

Good Sport
#1 Man
The Philadelphia 76ers have told Australian-born, Louisiana State forward Ben Simmons they'll select him with the number one pick in tomorrow's NBA Draft, which is great news for Simmons, but it kinda spoils the surprise for us on draft day. Thanks, Sixers. We also like being told what's in our Christmas presents before we get a chance to open them, in case you were wondering.

Honorable Mention: Swedish soccer player Zlatan Ibrahimović, owner of Sweden's international goals record (62) and a douchebag man bun, will retire from international play after Euro 2016.

Bad Sport
Catch Me If You Can
Much like Frank Abagnale from Catch Me If You Can, world champion Italian rower Vincenzo Abbagnale loves running away from his problems. Abbagnale has been given a 16-month ban for dodging three doping tests, which will keep him out of the 2016 Rio Olympics.

(Dis)Honorable Mention: After the International Association of Athletics Federations upheld a ban on Russian Track & Field athletes from participating in the 2016 Olympics on Friday, the International Olympic Committee caved yesterday, stating they'll allow "some" of the aforementioned athletes to participate. If mom says no, just ask dad.

Fan of the Week
Nelson Hidalgo must see himself as the Mad Max Doof Warrior (guitar guy). Hidalgo was arrested after blasting music into the New York Mets' stadium from the parking lot with a van that was rigged with over 50 speakers. A for effort.

Wet Your Whistle Wednesday
Seeing as Monday was the first official day of summer, we've decided to explore some perfect summer brews for getting uncontrollably bombed by the beach.
As you've certainly noticed, there's a near-infinite amount of "summer beer" ads surfacing that beer companies will gleefully be jamming down our throats from now until August. It can be difficult to cut through the clutter, so we've pulled out four to share with you that we really enjoy, with each bringing a unique, crisp flavor. Sierra Nevada's Summerfest Lager (bready, touch of hops), Goose Island's Summertime (lemon/fruity), Victory Brewing Company's Summer Love (citrus, touch of hops), and
Pyramid's Apricot Ale (apricot, duh) are all solid additions to any respectable day-drinking soirée. No matter what you choose, just be careful when drinking on the beach, because Johnny Law has made it illegal to booze on damn near every one of 'em. You don't have to drink these beers this summer, but please promise us you won't drink Corona, which tastes like piss that's passed through a dehydrated homeless man.

What to Watch (All Times Eastern)
MLB. Nationals at Dodgers - 10pm on ESPN
NHL. NHL Awards: From Las Vegas - 7pm on NBC Sports
SOCCER. UEFA Euro 2016: Hungary vs. Portugal - 11:30am on ESPN; UEFA Euro 2016: Iceland vs. Austria - 11:30am on ESPN2; UEFA Euro 2016: Italy vs. Ireland - 2:30pm on ESPN; UEFA Euro 2016: Sweden vs. Belgium - 2:30pm on ESPN2; Copa America Centenario: Colombia vs. Chile - 8pm on Fox Sports 1.
COLLEGE BASEBALL. College World Series: UC Santa Barbara vs. Arizona - 7pm on ESPN
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