In case you were busy pouring one out for the Dawgfather, here's what you missed in sports last weekend:
- After a controversial unsportsmanlike conduct penalty call went against New England, Jets kicker Nick Folk hit a 42-yard field goal in overtime to give New York a come-from-behind 30-27 win. Jets head coach Rex Ryan defended the officials when asked about the penalty after the game, saying, "Look, it was a new rule, and besides, we all got to see some more kicking out there as a result. So how is that not a win for everybody? I know I just love the kicking game; it's absolutely at the core of why I love football. Gotta love the kicking of the football." Ryan then adjusted himself and added, "Now if ya'll excuse me, I have to contrive a reason to leave right now."
- Peyton Manning's return to Indianapolis became a showcase for his successor, Andrew Luck, as the Colts beat the Broncos, 39-33, snapping Denver's 17-game regular-season winning streak. "Oh what the hell was that?" a furious Manning asked after the game. "Where was that defense when I was here?" When he got a laugh from the press corps, Manning immediately yelled, "No! This isn't funny! I blame you, the media. You always asked me if I wanted to play against my own defense. And I lied right to your faces. I said no. But I did. And now I come here and they're all good? Not cool at all, mainstream media. Not cool."
- Rookie starter Michael Wacha earned the NLCS MVP, throwing another scoreless gem to guide the St. Louis Cardinals into the World Series with a 9-0 win over the error-prone Los Angeles Dodgers. "I did what I had to do," said Dodgers manager Don Mattingly, whose decision-making came under scrutiny throughout the series, before adding, "And just to get out in front of this, if you hear that in the mid-’80s I angered an elderly soothsayer with a wart on her nose, who cursed me, saying that if I ever made the World Series in any capacity I would suffer eternal torments in this life and the next … um, that didn't happen. And if even if it did, um … it didn't."
- The Tigers once again couldn't make an early lead hold up, as Shane Victorino's eighth-inning grand slam proved to be the difference for the Boston Red Sox, who will be joining the Cardinals in the World Series after their 5-2 win over Detroit. When asked if he'd manage his bullpen differently were he to get another crack at it, Tigers manager Jim Leyland said, "Time was a bullpen was just a paddock full of angry boy cows. A man hops on in there, and he rides for eight seconds, then he comes back out and spends some quality time with his lady. A bullpen was a place for genuine men. Genuine cowboys." Leyland then shook his head and asked, "Where is my John Wayne? Where is my prairie song? Where is my happy ending? Where have all the cowboys gone?" before walking away humming "doo-doo-doo, doo-doo-doo."
- It was a rough weekend for injuries in the NFL, with stars such as Texans linebacker Brian Cushing and Rams quarterback Sam Bradford suffering season-ending leg injuries, and numerous other stars including quarterback Jay Cutler, running backs Arian Foster and Doug Martin, and wide receiver Reggie Wayne also exiting their teams' games. "But no head injuries, my lord?" asked current NFL commissioner Roger Goodell from his egg-shaped command chamber at the NFL's interstellar headquarters. "No, no," replied the holographic head of former commissioner Paul Tagliabue. "So, I can go back to soothing my lava-scalded robot body?" Goodell asked his former boss. "Yes, my apprentice," Tagliabue replied. As Goodell walked back to his recuperative chamber, he asked, "Hey, so, maybe for the next commissioner, we could not force them to bathe in lava to feel what it is to play the game?" But Tagliabue's silence made it clear that such a change was not in the cards.
- Paris Saint-Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic did this in his team's 4-0 win over Bastia. There's no joke to be made here, except for the one made by whatever scientific force or higher power allowed someone to be capable of doing that while also giving me a weird pain in my jaw when I yawn too hard.
- Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Nick Young has called his team's crosstown rivals "disrespectful," after the Clippers implemented their new initiative to cover up Lakers banners during Clippers home games. "Disrespectful?" asked a genuinely confused Clippers owner Donald Sterling. "That's quite literally the most respectful active choice I've ever made in my entire life. When Coach Rivers brought the idea to me, I thought we should just hire some strippers to go at the banners with one of my grandson's guns that shoots those little balls of paint." Sterling then smiled and added, "Don't worry, we still implemented the important parts of that plan."
- It was a banner weekend for Florida State as it both topped Clemson, 51-14, and found itself in the top two of the season's first BCS rankings, which put Alabama and the Seminoles in pole position for the final BCS National Championship ahead of Oregon, Ohio State, and Missouri. "You should have seen the first rankings the computer spit out, woo-wee!" said BCS executive director Bill Hancock, as he sweated profusely. "That computer gone done spit out Michigan and USC. So I tell the computer, 'I know you're madder than three dogs 'round a wasp nest that you're getting turned off after this year, but that's no reason to go and act a fool on us now.' So then the computer spits out Oregon, which looks reasonable. But then she spits out Oregon again! 'Now how we gonna have a team play itself in a game of football?' I ask the computer, and, no foolin', she threatens to put Notre Dame back in the title game unless we back off the whole playoff thing. So I tell the computer this is bigger than me and her and Lou Holtz around a whole den of angry honeybees, but she don't like that one bit and she starts bleep-blooping about the Big Ten champion against Oklahoma, which is quite clearly a bridge well too far past the river, so I grab her plug and wiggle it just a little bit and ask her about surges, and how those are in relation to the health of her motherboard. Now she don't know I'm bluffing, and to be clear I am bluffing, 'cause without that computer we are up two creeks with no paddles when it comes to telling whose good at the ol' football played with hands. But I think you'll all agree she spit out a good result with the Noles and Tide." An exhausted Hancock then patted his brow with a handkerchief before adding, "Lord, I just don't know how this season's gonna end, that I can tell you right now. We got a desperate computer on our hands, and that's as good as having three donkeys and Steve Spurrier dancin' 'round a hornet hole."