All Other Sports

Pro wrestlers speak out on Larry King Live

The Chris Benoit story continues to send shockwaves through the world of professional wrestling and last night on Larry King Live, along with other former stars, WWE Champion John Cena joined Chris Jericho in studio and Bret Hart via satellite for an on-air discussion about the man and the murders.

As expected, they were as shocked by what unfolded a couple weeks back as the rest of us. Nobody had a clue as to what would make the man they considered to be a consummate professional commit such savage acts. In fact, Jericho said that Benoit was a great father.

If I had to leave my kids with somebody, I would leave them with Chris Benoit if I was in a pinch and not have any — any inkling of anything but that they would get the best possible care and attention. And that’s another reason why it’s just so completely — it’s so hard to deal with, Larry, because this guy loved his kids, L-O-V-E capital letters.

While steroids continue to play a role in the ongoing dialogue surrounding the double-murder/suicide, the entire panel seemed to think that its lazy journalism for the media to simply claim that steroids are the cause of this tragedy and said they wouldn’t believe it until the proof was offered. Benoit passed a drug test back in April.

As horrible as this has been for the families and the profession, the truth is that we will never know exactly what caused Benoit to snap. Even if drugs are found in his system, this still can’t be explained by a simple pill or injection. We’d like to be able to say that this guy was a pill popping, needle stabbing, brutal human being, because that would explain a whole lot, but the people that knew him best say he wasn’t that man at all. Of course, he could have been fooling them all along but if friends of five, ten, 15, 20 years have no clue, then it’s highly unlikely that some news organization will uncover anything any different.

The questions will never be answered and it is completely wrong to judge the entire wrestling industry as steroid pumping madmen based on Benoit’s actions. The NFL isn’t full of O.J. Simpsons, the NBA isn’t all Ron Artests and the WWE isn’t a huge collection of Benoits. This individual had some serious, serious mental issues and that’s basically all we will ever know.


[]: Wrestler Kills Wife, Son & Himself

All Other Sports

WWE cuts ties with Chris Benoit as the sick truth surfaces

After the sick and twisted details emerged surrounding the Chris Benoit tragedy, it was clear that Vince McMahon was extremely pissed about having wasted a three hour RAW to honor the sick killer. Not to mention the perfect storm of steroid allegations. So, to open ECW, McMahon issued this statement that virtually brushed Benoit off the WWE map:

Last night on ‘Monday Night Raw,’ the WWE presented a special tribute show, recognizing the career of Chris Benoit. However, now some 26 hours later, the facts of this horrific tragedy are now apparent. Therefore, other than my comments, there will be no mention of Mr. Benoit tonight. On the contrary, tonight’s show will be dedicated to everyone who has been affected by this terrible incident. This evening marks the first step of the healing process. Tonight, the WWE performers will do what they do better than anyone else in the world — entertain you.

And with that being said, the WWE was back to business as usual; on screen, that is.

John Cena made a rare ECW appearance as he kicked off the show with a match against the newly crowned champion of the brand, Johnny Nitro. Nitro gave it his all, but he was completely outclassed by Cena and, in his first title defense, the paparazzi’s favorite superstar tapped out to the STFU.

But the fun didn’t stop there for the humiliated young champ as he discovered that the new number one contender for his title will be CM Punk. Punk survived a “two out of three falls” match against Elijah Burke by delivering the GTS in the third and final fall to set up a rematch of Vengeance’s title bout.

And in between those two matches was a ridiculous skit involving Rowdy Roddy Piper and Matt Striker that ended with Striker getting a face full of his own birthday cake. Oh, and to top it off, the Boogie Man showed up and KO’d the birthday boy before doing performing his worm regurgitation tradition. Happy Birthday To Ewwwww!

NBA General

Odds and Ends: Kevin Durant gets Gilbertized

Gilbert Arenas is a great talent on the court, but it’s pretty well known that he’s a bit cuckoo in the head. And Kevin Durant is a superstar in the waiting who is a human sponge waiting for the proper teacher. Basically what we are saying is that if we were the GM at Portland or Seattle, we would get our cornerstone of the future the hell away from Agent 0.

In other news…

[USA Today]: Jockey gets a slap on the wrist for kicking a horse.

[]: It’s up and down for Chicago Bears fans.

[ESPN]: Chris Benoit murdered his wife and son; the ugly truth unfolds.

[]: Yao Ming is getting married!

[]: Stephen Jackson is gone but the Pacers are still going to court.

And finally, Tank Johnson, Pacman Jones, Michael Vick and a slew of other might be on the outside looking in at the moment, but we think that we might have found a kid who is working on filling those empty NFL holes one day. He definitely has the off-field behavior down.

All Other Sports

Chris Benoit: the ultimate professional

In an unbelievably surreal moment, Vince McMahon stood in the middle of the ring at the beginning of Monday Night RAW and announced that Chris Benoit had died. What was scheduled to be a tribute to the “presumed dead” McMahon instead turned into a numbing tribute to the fallen former champion.

Benoit, 40, was found dead along with his wife and seven-year-old son in their Fayetteville, GA, home on Monday around 2:30 p.m. No details are being released, but the Fayette County sheriff’s office reported that the deaths are being investigated as homicides. However, a detective allegedly told an Atlanta television station that the events are being investigated as a murder-suicide with Benoit murdering his son and wife sometime during the weekend before ending his own life on Monday.

On Sunday, Benoit was scheduled to take on CM Punk for the ECW Championship but was replaced by Johnny Nitro for what Jim Ross called “personal reasons.” Before arriving in the ECW via the draft a few weeks back, Benoit had already carved out his legacy in championship gold as he is one of the few wrestlers to hold titles in the original ECW, WWE, and WCW. But The Rabid Wolverine’s crowning moment came at WrestleMania XX when his crippler crossface forced Triple H to tap out, giving Benoit his first and only World Heavyweight Championship title reign in the WWE.

There was no flair in Benoit’s style; he was a strategic, methodical, no-nonsense, in your face, beat down machine. Benoit was one of the few guys who didn’t need a gimmick; he walked to the ring and his reputation did all the talking that was needed. Whether it was from the fans or the wrestlers, Benoit earned respect from each and every person who saw him perform inside the ring. His passion and intensity were palatable and the WWE and its fans will sorely miss his old school skills in a business obsessed with the next big thing.


[]: WWE wrestler Benoit & family found dead in home
[]: Wrestler Chris Benoit, wife and child found dead