Sweet(s) Talk: No easy course for sports world

The coronavirus pandemic has caused many things to get canceled, postponed or extremely altered in which the manner in which they will play out. In the sports world, MLB, NHL and the NBA are all about to re-start, or in the case of MLB, begin their seasons. The NBA is using one centralize location, ESPN/Disney’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando, to play all of the remaining games.

The NHL is going to use two yet to be determined hub cities, one for each conference, East and West. Then there’s MLB, they are going to let teams travel and take road trips. While they are going to come out with a 60-game regional schedule for each division, they are going to travel from city to city nonetheless. What’s the best plan of action of the three? Someone tell me. Whether this is worth the risk of contracting the coronavirus for the players, coaches, officials etc.etc., well that’s a whole ‘nother discussion in itself.

In this writer’s point of view, whomever is the champion of these abbreviated and split seasons, will forever be remembered as “asterisk” champions. Some Cubs fans, or fans like some of the people who cheer for a certain college football team, a stone’s throw away from “Touchdown Jesus” would use an asterisk championship as something to brag about. Oh and if the Detroit Lions were to win an asterisk championship, there’s a Lions fan I know who resides on Lawrence Street in Kingsford, who would organize a parade down Carpenter Avenue from Greenleaf’s to our Daily News office to rub it in my face! And yes I mean you Todd. …

Former WHTO 106.7 radio voice of the Norway Knights Jim Bal “With The Call”, along with his brothers Jeff “Nip” Jerry “Chico” and their sister Julie will lay their dear father Joe “Tata” Bal to rest on Friday. “Tat” died back on March 26, a couple weeks shy of his 90th birthday. Tat was a gruff and sometimes very blunt man on the exterior, but in all reality, he had a heart of gold. You always knew where you stood with him, especially if he liked you. I considered Tata a friend, being a good family friend of his three sons, many of his nephews, and his brothers and sisters, and grandkids.

Tat knew who he could tease and who he shouldn’t, and boy would he tease me. As I have aged, my love for food and an occasional adult beverages caught up with me, as my metabolism hit rock bottom. Lord knows, my love for exercise got left on Norfolk Naval Station when I was discharged from the Navy in 2004, so those weren’t a good combination. Many times the last dozen or so years, Tat would see me and his eyes would light up and he’d greet me as he usually “Sweets! How’s it going?” then as he’d poke my stomach he’d smile and say “It looks like your putting on some Whachacall (Weight)!!” And what was I going to say to him, not only was he right, but that was his way of showing me he cared about me.

God Bless you and RIP Tat, I’ll miss you! …

Happy Independence Day everyone! Stay safe and hydrated, it’s going to be hot.


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