Highlights of the week ahead in sports, both here and afar:
(Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America)
Allyson Felix celebrates after winning the 200 meters at the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials in Eugene, Ore., on June 30.
THIS WEEK’S BEST BET
London Summer Olympics: Track and field: Women’s 200 meter gold-medal race, Wednesday, 8 p.m. (delayed), Channel 4:
Allyson Felix’s aim is true. And her time has come. Again, in the 200 meter finals.
This may not play out as the most dynamic world-wide moment of the second week of the Games of the XXX Olympiad. But for those who’ve followed the career of the former L.A. Baptist High and USC star, who in 2003 was named the national girls’ “High School Athlete of the Year” by Track and Field News and grown up before our eyes, it’s a very defining moment, a decade later. We know that while Queen Felix has won three World Championships in the 200, she’s only managed a silver in this race as an 18-year-old in ’04 and 22-year-old in ’08 in Olympic years. Coming into this event, she’ll have warmed up with a fifth-place finish in the 100 (10.89 seconds, below).
(AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)
Allyson Felix, far left, couldn’t catch Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, second from left, who crossed the finish first in the 100 meters final on Saturday in London. Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare, center, American Carmelita Jeter, second from right, and Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell-Brown, right, all reached the end within two tenths of a second of Fraser-Pryce.
What’s her mindset coming into the 200? She tweeted out that photo above earlier this week. Gold is on her mind. And she’s probably digging the fact that she’ll have to win it against foes like Jamaican stars Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Veronica Campbell-Brown, as well as American teammates Carmelita Jeter and Sanya Richards-Ross. Gold can also come later in the women’s 4×100 relay (Friday) and 4×200 relay (Saturday). But it’s just not the same, you know?
(AP Photo/Christian Petersen, Pool)
Kobe Bryant goes up for a dunk against Nigeria during a a preliminary basketball game on Thursday last week in London.
The rest of the week’s prime-time delayed gratification highlights:
Track includes finals in the men’s 400 (Monday), 200 and 800 meters,with more Usain Bolt sightings, as well as the decathlon (Thursday). There’s some suspense as to whether the Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings team gets past Jen Kessey and April Ross for the women’s beach volleyball final (Wednesday), a day before the men’s beach gold might include American’s Jake Gibb and Sean Rosenthal. The women’s individual gymnastics (Monday and Tuesday) gives Gabby Douglas another shot at singular gold; the women’s soccer final (Thursday) means the U.S. team could finally gets to play a game in London. Saturday could bring gold for the women’s basketball and indoor volleyball. The final day Sunday starts with the classic men’s marathon, the gold in men’s basketball, volleyball and water polo, and then the closing ceremonies (8 p.m., delayed). Spice Girls, anyone?
MLB: Dodgers vs. Colorado, Dodger Stadium, 7:10 p.m., Prime:
The Rockies are such a mess, some 20 games out of first in the NL West, 30 games under .500 and losing 14 of their last 17, manager Jim Tracy doesn’t even know who he will name to pitch on Tuesday or Wednesday of this series. He might as well recruit the Sandy Koufax bobblehead that the Dodgers are going to give away on Tuesday (7:10 p.m., Channel 9). Jonathan Sanchez, recently picked up by the Rockies from Kansas City after his 1-6 start and 7.76 ERA, has lost seven in a row this year and is 0-3 with a 9.53 ERA so far with the Rockies. He could be the best option available for Wednesday (7:10 p.m., Prime).
MLB: Angels at Oakland, 7:05 p.m., FSW:
If you’re fishing around for what Mike Trout may want for his 21st birthday on Tuesday (7:05 p.m., FSW), keep it simple. Keeping the A’s at bay would be the way to go. Jered Weaver (14-1, 2.29 ERA) has given up one earned run in 14 2/3 innings against Oakland this year, resulting in two victories. The series ends Wednesday (12:35 p.m., FSW), where Zack Greinke (0-1, 5.14 ERA in his first two Angels’ starts, both losses) tries to make a difference.
NFL: “Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Miami Dolphins,” 10 p.m., HBO:
HBO Sports had a tough time getting any NFL team to agree to its annual behind-the-scenes training camp series — the Dolphins were hardly the first choice. But the five-episode series launches for a seventh season in hour-long, quick turn-around segments, ending on Sept. 4. New coach Joe Philbin, taking the boys all the way to Davie, Fla., should provide some … footage? NFL Films sends a 30-person crew to follow them around, shooting about 1,200 hours of video.
Series sneak-peak: “Go On,” 11 p.m., Channel 4:
You haven’t seen all the promos for this during NBC’s Olympic coverage so far? Oh, go on. The network cuts short its usual run to midnight prime-time coverage and gives the new Mathew Perry sit-com a commercial-free window. The premise (if you haven’t figured it out): Perry plays Ryan King, a radio sports-talk show host who is forced to go on to group grief therapy to deal with issues after the death of his wife. There, he shows everyone that life is like sports — suck it up and, well, go on. Hew new friends will help him overcome all this. Just, not his old “Friends” cast.
MLB: San Francisco at St. Louis, 5 p.m., ESPN:
Giants scheduled starter Ryan Vogelsong remains third in the NL in ERA (2.38).
(AP Photo/Chuck Burton)
The 18th-hole scoreboard on the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island, S.C., is empty. For now.
Golf: 94th PGA Championship, Kiawah Island, S.C., first round, 10 a.m., TNT:
For the final major of the golf season, we are reminded that 16 players have won the last 16 majors. And that streak does not include Tiger Woods, who missed the cut in the PGA Championship a year ago. In that event, Keegan Bradley (right) became only the third player in the last 100 years to win a major in his first try, winning a playoff in Atlanta after he charged back from a five-shot deficit with three holes to play and get into a playoff with Jason Dufner. The last two major winners — Webb Simpson at the U.S. Open and Ernie Els at the British Open — did so by finishing early and waiting for the on-course leader to squander his advantage. In fact, in the 17 majors since Woods won his last one, the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines in the 2008, only four players with a share of the 54-hole lead have gone on to win a major. The top 108 players in the world rankings are supposed to be at the Pete Dye-designed 7,776-yard Kiawah Island Ocean Course — and no other tournament gets that many in its field of 156 (136 tour pros, 20 club pros). Woods and Bradley will be partnered with Martin Kaymer in the 8:30 a.m. (ET) group that starts things off today. TNT has Friday’s second round (10 a.m.) and a snipped of rounds three and four (Saturday and Sunday, 8-to-11 am.), with the final two rounds are on Channel 2 (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
NFL exhibition: Green Bay at San Diego, 5 p.m., ESPN:
For the first time in years, the Chargers aren’t the sexy pick to win the AFC West, let alone reach the Super Bowl. Not after having missed the playoffs the last two years. Antonio Gates says that may be a good thing. “It’s definitely humbling,” said the eight-time Pro Bowl tight end. “Because we haven’t gotten that exposure, it’s humbling to our team.” But then, your first exhibition game is on national TV.
MLB: Dodgers at Miami, 4:10 p.m., Prime:
The day after the Marlins traded Hanley Ramirez to the Dodgers, they went out and lost a game to Atlanta, 7-1, on July 25. What made that special: They stole seven bases in the game — the first team in 103 years to steal seven and still come up with just one run in a nine-inning game. All of them came off Braves catcher Brian McCann — who did throw one guy out, Jose Reyes, who had two of the seven anyway. As Miami is a franchise — or as Showtime calls them, “The Franchise” — in some kind of disrepair, they’ve got Nate Eovaldi, right, in the stating rotation (he should pitch against his old team on Sunday), Carlos Zambrano in the bullpen, Giancarlo Stanton perhaps ready to come back this week and Ozzie Guillen trying to keep quiet. The first of 10 games in a row on the East Coast roadie for the Dodgers continues Saturday (4:10 p.m., Channel 9) and Sunday (10:10 a.m., Channel 9).
MLB: Angels vs. Seattle, Angel Stadium, 7:05 p.m., FSW:
The Angels have won five of the first seven meetings so far — and that was in the Ichiro era. The series continues Saturday (6:05 p.m., FSW) and Sunday (12:35 p.m., FSW), three of the first 10 home games in a row.
NFL exhibition: N.Y. Jets at Cincinnati, 4:30 p.m., NFL Network:
Let the Mark Sanchez-Tim Tebow comparisons begin. The NFL Network has also locked in the Jets’ second practice game, Aug. 18, at the Meadowlands against the N.Y. Giants.
Football: ArenaBowl XXV from New Orleans, 7:30 p.m., NFL Network:
Not an exhibition, but it might as well be.
Little League: West Regional final, from San Bernardino, 5 p.m., ESPN:
Win this one, kids, and you’ll cost your parents a whole lot of money trying to catch a flight to Williamsport, Pa. The Southern California Region is represented this year by Orange Little League in the O.C.
MLS: Galaxy at Chivas, Home Depot Center, 8 p.m., ESPN2:
Landon Donovan scored twice, David Beckham had two assists and Robbie Keane scored the other goal in the Galaxy’s 3-1 win over the Goats a couple of weeks ago, making even the series this year, with this one going down as the Super Clasico tie breaker. As part of the new unbalanced schedule, their three meetings probably suits the fans better than having each team try to play every MLS team twice.