SPORTS

On Deck: Federer’s 1000th match win; Tiger’s Return; Floyd-Manny close?

TAGs: Australian Open, boxing, Floyd Mayweather, golf, Kirby Garlitos, Manny Pacquiao, On Deck, roger federer, sports, Tiger Woods

on-deck-federers-1000th-match-win-tigers-return-floyd-manny-closeThe sign of true greatness is repeated success at the highest level of somebody’s chosen field or profession. Quite frankly, I have yet to win 1,000 times at anything in my life but Roger Federer certainly has.

You’ve probably read or heard about it over the weekend. Federer won his 1,000th tennis match when he outlasted Milos Raonic to win the Brisbane International, the warm-up tournament to the 2015 Australian Open.

Winning the Brisbane International isn’t exactly a big deal, but Federer made sure to make it matter by becoming only the third player in men’s tennis to break the 1,000-win barrier. He’s still got a long ways to go to eclipse Jimmy Connors’ record of 1,253 match wins, but if he keeps up this form, he could jump past Ivan Lendl’s 1,071-win mark before the year ends.

The accomplishment is a testament to Federer’s status as arguably the greatest tennis player of this generation. Doing it at the Brisbane International also relieves the pressure of breaking the mark, something that would otherwise be blown up at the Australian Open. That’s unwanted pressure from a man who is looking to win his first Grand Slam title since Wimbledon in 2012.

At the very least, this sets him up nicely heading into the first Grand Slam tournament of the year. Right now, Federer, the number 2 ranked player in the world, is priced to win the Australian Open at 6/1 odds, behind only world number 1 Novak Djokovic, who is the favorite to win at 11/10.

It’s the perfect way to wrap up a warm-up tournament heading into the Australian Open. Doing so while notching his 1,000th win is the cherry on top of the proverbial sundae.

 

Tiger Woods to return at 2015 Waste Management Phoenix Open

Speaking of all-time greats that have had championship droughts, it’s hard to believe that Tiger Woods hasn’t won a golf Major since 2008. In the past six years, Woods has battled through a lot of adversity, beginning with the infamous cheating scandal to go with a myriad of injuries and on-course collapses late in tournaments.

His 2014 run was actually one of the worst of his career, culminating in him shutting down for the year to heal all the ailments, physical and otherwise, that have continued to haunt him for the better part of the last few years.

Well, 2015 is a brand new year and Woods is determined to make it his own, announcing that he would make his 2015 debut at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, a tournament that he hasn’t played since 2001. Odd sponsorship name notwithstanding, the Phoenix Open should be heavily hyped more than its usual fare seeing as Woods will be a part of the field.

It’s going to be interesting how he handles the pressure and scrutiny that comes with his return, but if he’s really back to his old form, that could be the jolt golf needs to get back some of the relevancy it has lost since Woods was sidelined last year.

Even better, Tiger also said that he’s following up his participation in Phoenix by showing up a week later at the Farmers insurance Open in Torrey Pines, a course where he has won eight times and considers as one of his favorites.

We all know what Woods means to golf, even if he’s not playing to his old standards. Having him out there will draw a lot of attention back to the sport, so it’s nice to see Tiger making his return. Hopefully, he plays much better than he did the last time we saw him at the PGA Championship in August. He didn’t make the cut, in case you’ve forgotten.

He’s currently 20/1 to win the tournament so if you’re looking for a non-Super Bowl XLIX bet to make during Super Bowl weekend, Tiger Woods winning the Waste Management Phoenix Open is certainly worth a look.

 

Floyd-Pacquiao close?

I know, I know. You’re probably saying to yourself, “We’ve been down this road before.”

But hear me out for a second here. You know that hotly-anticipated fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr and Manny Pacquiao, the same fight that boxing fans have been clamoring for but has fallen apart more times than a Simpsons family picnic?

Well, it appears that it’s closer than ever to finally becoming a reality. Multiple sources – note the sources part – have indicated that both fighters have agreed to a number of things regarding their fight, including the venue and the drug testing protocol that will be implemented for the fight.

As for the actual fight itself? Well, that’s still being supposedly negotiated but Manny Pacquiao himself confirmed that talks between his camp and Mayweather are progressing to the point that we could hear the big news by the end of the month.

Obviously, if I had a dollar for every time “talks have progressed” regarding this fight before falling apart in the end, then I’d be a millionaire by now. Ok, maybe a hundred-thousand-naire, but you still get the picture.

It’s incumbent at this point to take any news regarding this fight with a grain of salt, but the fact that neither have fighter has announced their opponents for their spring schedules is at least making me hopeful that they’ll announce it together because they’ll be fighting each other.

Keep your fingers crossed, people.

 

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