I have previews of three sports programs you can watch in case you’re not a Lost fan.
MLB Network has an interesting interview with Willie Mays tonight.
New episode of Studio 42 with Bob Costas airs Tuesday, February 9 at 8:00 p.m. ETFebruary 2, 2010 – Hall of Famer and two-time MVP Willie Mays, one of the greatest baseball players of all time, discusses his legendary 22-year career in an episode of MLB Network’s Studio 42 with Bob Costas on Tuesday, February 9 at 8:00 p.m. ET & PT. Throughout the interview, Mays recounts memorable moments from both on and off the field, including playing in the Negro Leagues, being signed by the New York Giants, his hitting style, his famous over-the-shoulder catch, fellow Hall of Famers Jackie Robinson, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio and Stan Musial, and his relationship with his godson, former San Francisco Giants outfielder Barry Bonds.A preview of the interview can be viewed here.Prior to Studio 42 with Bob Costas, MLB Network’s live nightly studio show during the offseason, Hot Stove, will air at 6:00 p.m. ET with updates and analysis of the moves all 30 clubs are making and planning in preparation for the upcoming season.Highlights from the interview with Mays include:ON HIS INDIVIDUAL ACCOMPLISHMENTS:I guess I was more of a team player than just an individual player. I liked for the team to win. I would go in the clubhouse, sit in my locker and just laugh and have a good time. The guy would bring me a sandwich over and I would see the guys smiling. That was more fun to me than hitting four home runs and going in the clubhouse and everybody’s mad because we lost the game. So a lot of things happened in baseball that I had a little bit of control over, but I would have rather been known as a complete player, a team player, not showing up anybody on the field or off the field, just, you know, a nice guy.ON HIS FAMOUS OVER-THE-SHOULDER CATCH:When Vic [Wertz] hit the ball to centerfield I never was worried about catching the ball, I was worried about getting the ball back into the infield. And I’m saying to myself, ‘I gotta get this ball back in the infield or Larry [Doby] is gonna score.’ … But as the ball was coming down, I knew I had the ball, but it was just a matter of getting it back into the infield. In The Polo Grounds I never had a cutoff man. They never came out. They’d say, “You’ve got a good enough arm, we don’t need to come out, it’s a waste of time,” so I never did throw it to a cutoff man. I always had the ball back into the infield. I was the cutoff man, so when a ball goes to left center, I would come to centerfield and be the cutoff man because I had the best arm, which made a lot of sense to Leo [Durocher]. Leo never said anything, so I just kept doing what I had to do, so it was fine.ON JACKIE ROBINSON:But that’s when I thought, boy I got a chance to get out of here and go to the Majors as quick as I can … Before that, I had three guys that I’d look up every Sunday. In Sunday’s paper there was Stan Musial, Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams. So now when Jackie Robinson came in, that gave me hope, because all these other guys I didn’t know and I didn’t think I was going to ever meet them, but I thought Jackie was my mentor.ON WHETHER HE WAS NERVOUS BEFORE TEAMMATE BOBBY THOMSON’S “SHOT HEARD ‘ROUND THE WORLD”:I thought they would walk Bobby to get to me anyway because Bobby just hit a home run off of [Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Ralph] Branca in Brooklyn, probably the day before. It’s a three-game playoff and I’m saying to myself, ‘They’re gonna walk Bobby to get to me. What can I do?” I wasn’t nervous, I didn’t get nervous or anything like that, I was always kind of cool, you know, whatever happened happens. So I wanted to go to the plate right quick, but I tell you when you say nervous, when Bobby hit the home run, I was the last guy to get to home plate, and I’m saying to myself, “You’re on deck, fool, get up to the plate right away, so nobody can see you,” but somebody caught it, and I’m just number-24 coming up and when everybody else is there, shouting, and, and, and trying to wait for Bobby to get to home plate and I was the last guy, so I think I was a little nervous.ON HIS GODSON, BARRY BONDS:I think he’s gonna be in the Hall of Fame and I don’t think he did anything other than what other guys were doing. I don’t even really know that but I don’t like to get involved in things that I don’t know about, controversial stuff, and that’s why a lot of times I don’t even go on shows because they’re gonna ask me the same kind of questions … As far as what he was using, I don’t really know. I really didn’t ask him about his problems because it wasn’t my duty. He never asked me about anything so why should I get involved in what he was doing? So I really don’t know. I don’t get involved unless he calls. I don’t know what he does. If he did something, I’d be right there. I don’t care what it is, I’m never gonna leave someone that I like very much, and I think if he picks up the phone and calls me, I would be right there.ON HIS NEW AUTOBIOGRAPHY Willie Mays: The Life, The Legend:This book was a book for the people. I travel a lot and when I’m getting on planes or going through the airport, there always was someone saying, ‘You did this for me, you did that for me, and I’m saying, ‘I don’t remember all of these things,’ and so I said that maybe there’s a book in this, so these people can tell their stories … So if you look at that book … it’s probably four or five hundred different things that people tell you that I did for them and I didn’t know anything about it. So that’s the type of book I wanted, not just me talking about me, because I have like four or five books already out and how much can you talk about baseball when you’re doing things? … Most all the money is going to the foundation that I have for kids. I take care of battered wives, I take care of the police department around my house, the fire department, everybody around there because they’ve been so good to me that I have to do all these types of things a lot.”
Two programs from HBO tonight, one the latest edition of Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.
REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBELPROFILES U.S. MEN’S FIGURE SKATER JOHNNY WEIR;EXAMINES THE STRINGENT OLYMPIC DRUG TESTING PROCESS;TAKES AN INSIDE LOOK AT THE SPORT OF CURLING; ANDREVISITS FORMER OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST BILL JOHNSON WHEN THE EMMY®-WINNING SHOW RETURNS FEB. 9, EXCLUSIVELY ON HBO®With the Winter Games in Vancouver just days away, REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL presents an Olympic-themed program when its 155th edition, available in HDTV, debuts TUESDAY, FEB. 9 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), an hour earlier than usual, exclusively on HBO.Segments include:*Johnny Weir. Johnny Weir may not be the top American figure skater heading into the upcoming Olympic Games in Vancouver, though he’s certainly the most talked about. Thanks to his unfiltered comments, controversial costume designs and revealing reality TV show, the flamboyant star from Pennsylvania’s Amish Country has always had an easier time making headlines outside the rink than on the ice. But as correspondent Frank Deford discovers in this REAL SPORTS profile, there’s more to Weir than meets the eye. Fully committed to his skating and dead set on proving the critics wrong, Johnny Weir is ready to take the Olympics by storm. But are the Winter Games ready for Weir? Interviews also include: Johnny’s mother, Patti Weir.Producer: Lisa Bennett.*Olympic Enforcers. As the eyes of the world turn to Vancouver, the issue of drug testing inevitably returns to the forefront. Due to the high profile and infrequency of the Games, the war between Olympic athletes looking for an illegal edge and authorities seeking to govern them is especially fierce, resulting in the most stringent drug testing on the planet. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) conducts more than 8500 tests a year, both in and out of competition; athletes must inform the USADA of their whereabouts 365 days a year and can be tested anytime, anywhere. But does all this testing really catch the cheaters? In this REAL SPORTS/Sports Illustrated report, correspondent Jon Frankel goes behind the scenes with the USADA to see how enforcement works. Interviews include: USADA chief executive Travis Tygart; Doping Control Officers Arnold Thomas and Scott Lowell; Distance Runner Shalane Flanagan; Rower Aleks Zosuls; Skeleton competitor Zach Lund; Attorney Howard Jacobs.Producer: Nick Dolin.*Sweep This! If you’ve ever watched the Winter Olympics on TV and wondered how a bunch of people sliding rocks across the ice and sweeping with brooms became a sport, let alone an Olympic sport, you’re not alone. While curling hasn’t exactly gone mainstream here in the United States, it’s a national obsession north of the border. REAL SPORTS correspondent Bernard Goldberg travels to Canada to see what all the excitement’s about and visits Duluth, Minn., to take an inside look at the sport with a bartender, substitute teacher, construction worker and parole officer, aka the U.S. Olympic Curling team. Interviews include: U.S. Curling team members – John Benton, Phil Drobnick (coach), Jeff Isaacson, Chris Plys, John Shuster and Jason Smith; Toronto Globe columnist Bob Weeks; Canadian curler Glenn Howard; Ice maker Mark Shurek; amateur curler Eleanor McKitrick.Producer: Tim Walker.*Hard Times. In 2006 REAL SPORTS told the story of Bill Johnson, the United States’ first downhill skiing gold medalist. Johnson arrived at the 1984 Sarajevo Games a brazen 23-year-old without much of a track record, but with enough ability to carry him down the mountain in record time. Instead of emerging from the Olympics an American hero, however, he acquired a bad image to go with his medal. Many had already been put off by his cocky prediction that he would win the gold, finding it unbecoming in a sport that values respect and etiquette. And unfortunately for Johnson, the next 25 years proved more challenging than any downhill gates, as he suffered the death of a child, the deterioration of his marriage and a horrific skiing accident. Now, four years since his original profile, correspondent Frank Deford updates this moving story.Producers: Chapman Downes, Jill Klapper.REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL has won the Sports Emmy® for Outstanding Sports Journalism 12 of the last 14 years, in addition to being the first sports program honored with the duPont Award for excellence in broadcast journalism.The executive producers of REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL are Ross Greenburg and Rick Bernstein; Kirby Bradley is senior producer.
That will be followed by 24/7 Jimmie Johnson: Race to Daytona.
24/7 JIMMIE JOHNSON: RACE TO DAYTONAFEB. 9 EPISODEHBO Sports’ all-access show 24/7 JIMMIE JOHNSON: RACE TO DAYTONA continues with its third episode, debuting TUESDAY, FEB. 9 (10:00-10:30 p.m. ET/PT). The four-week series spotlights one of racing’s biggest stars, reigning four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, and gives viewers an inside look at the driver and his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team as they prepare for the Daytona 500, the Super Bowl of auto racing.Episode #3Debut: TUESDAY, FEB. 9 (10:00-10:30 p.m. ET/PT)
The intensity builds for the 48 team as they head to Florida to prepare for the all-important Daytona 500 time trials.The series finale of 24/7 JIMMIE JOHNSON: RACE TO DAYTONA debuts Tuesday, Feb. 16 (10:00-10:30 p.m.), two days after the race, with cameras tracking all the drama and excitement surrounding Johnson and his team on race day. All four episodes will have multiple replay dates on HBO, and be available on HBO On Demand.
The executive producers of 24/7 JIMMIE JOHNSON: RACE TO DAYTONA are Ross Greenburg and Rick Bernstein; senior producer, Dave Harmon; coordinating producer, Scott Boggins; producer, Bentley Weiner; writer, Peter Nelson. Liev Schreiber narrates.
So you have your sports viewing along with the replay of Super Bowl XLIV on NFL Network tonight.