I look forward to the Fourth of July for a myriad of reasons. First and foremost is that it’s my wedding anniversary (16 years thank you very much). Secondly is that it is usually a great day for baseball and of course the food and drink are about as good as it gets in the summertime.
Those are great reasons and all to love Independence Day but let’s face it; the fireworks don’t start until the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest gets underway at Noon. For the eighth straight year, Joey ‘Jaws’ Chestnut wolfed down more hot dogs than anyone else as he devoured 61 dogs and buns in ten minutes.
Chestnut has placed himself at the top of the competitive eating world despite the on-going controversy with his formerly top rival Kobayashi who once won six-straight hot dog eating contests. He is no longer able to compete in the event because he refused to sign a deal with Major League Eating. MLE is essentially the NFL of competitive eating.
I’ve always enjoyed the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating contest but I’ll be honest about something. It’s not legitimate in my opinion for one specific reason; no one eats hot dogs by dipping the buns in the water. It’s gross and completely ridiculous. An eating contest should emulate the way people eat the item in question. Therefore, dunking buns in water in an effort to eat more should be banned.
I know, I know… He’s talking about the National Hot Dog Eating contest on a sports betting blog but let me tell ya that this is one very serious discussion! The MLE is a very serious thing people!
I love the eating contest but until they recognize that eating a hot dog without water is the proper way to go then I’m just not biting anymore.
Is LeBron Narrowing Things Down?
It’s clear that LeBron James is doing things much differently than he did in 2010 leading up to his ‘decision.’ This time around James is doing his thing while his Cleveland-based agent Rich Paul is doing the leg work. ESPN is reporting that Paul has met with Phoenix, Houston, Dallas and Cleveland this past week. The Los Angeles Lakers also have reportedly made a pitch as well.
The one team you’ll notice absent among that group is the Miami Heat. While I don’t believe the Heat are completely out of the running I do think it’s starting to look less likely that James will return.
The economic impact that James’ ultimate decision will make is varied based upon his destination, but if you think this is just about James winning championships then think again.
One report suggested that if the NBA were without a salary cap James could make as much as $50 million per season. That isn’t going to happen but the financial impacts are great regardless. If you look at the number of fans James drew to Miami then that should give you a good idea of what impact he can have.
Take a look at Phoenix for example where LeBron’s presence would easily push Suns’ gear into the top five league-wide. Typically teams like the Lakers, Celtics, Bulls and Heat are your top sellers but Phoenix would most certainly replace Miami with LeBron in town.
As of right now, everything I’m seeing and hearing tells me that Cleveland is the front-runner. Let’s not forget the impact a wife and three kids can have on one’s decision in these matters. That said, who the other teams can bring along with LeBron may ultimately be the biggest factor in his decision.