Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Product Review: 2012 Press Pass Racing

Press Pass 2012 Racing is back with bigger hits than ever, delivering unprecedented excitement and value!
  • PRESS PASS AUTOGRAPHS - New for 2012! Autograph roster is limited to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers plus Danica Patrick! Look for Signature Series autographed memorabilia cards!
  • ONE IN EVERY FOUR AUTOGRAPHS WILL BE FROM Dale Jr., Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Danica Patrick, or Jimmie Johnson!
  • Each hobby box will include an authentic Race-Used Memorabilia card – Look for Burning Rubber Race-Used WIN Tires, Burning Rubber “PRIME CUTS”, Triple Gear, Ultimate Collection, and Four Wides!
  • Configuration: 30 packs per box. 6 cards per pack.
Just in time for the holiday season. Press Pass released their first 2012 product which is always a fun box to open. It's a lower-end product that many collectors buy to get their hands dirty. There is one memorabilia card per box. Let's see what we pulled:
    Base Set #0-100

    There are seven different base cards in the 100-card set. We pulled an entire set with some extras.

    The first sixty cards feature the drivers pictured in their uniform outside of their cars. They include drivers from the Sprint Cup, Nationwide, and Truck Series including Danica Patrick and Ricky Carmichael.

    Transporters which show a large trailer that some of the drivers use to transport their cars and equipment.

    Front Runners recognize drivers, including Carl Edwards and Jeff Gordon, who had won a pole this past season.

    Head of the Class recognize drivers who were victorious in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. These included Kyle Busch and Jeff Gordon.

    The last of the base set is 2011 Highlights. These remind fans of the special moments some of these drivers accomplished throughout the series. There is a card for the 2011 first time winners which is one of my favorite base cards.

    Base Parallels
    Blue Foil /35 & Gold Foil
    There are a couple of base parallel sets. The main one are the gold foil like the Dale Earnhardt Jr. above. We pulled a total of ten. Another parallel we pulled was the blue foil Joey Logano, which is numbered to 35. I like having more opportunities to collect different types of base sets.

    Inserts
    2012 Chase Contenders
    Press Pass give collectors a chance at receiving a special Cup Chase set at no cost that wiill feature all of the drivers who make the 2012 "Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup." If the driver on the front of these cards qualify for the 2012 "Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup" in September 2012, then you redeem the code on the back of the card on the press pass website. It's a cool way of possibly rooting for a driver you normally wouldn't be rooting for.

    Showcar (1:15) & Showman (1:15)
    We pulled two of each insert. The Showcar gives a nice look at the driver's car and in the background of the card you can see a picture of the driver. The Showman features the driver's in the uniform and their car is in the background. I like the idea of having their counterpart used in the background.

    Hall of Fame (1:30)
     One of my favorite inserts in the product. Recognizing the Hall of Fame drivers in the sport. These come one per box but we were fortunate enough to pull a second Hall of Fame card that is numbered out of 50. Both cards feature Cale Yarborough.

    Preferred Line (1:15)
     The preferred line remind me of the showman inserts except for the background color. These cards feature the driver's full body with their helmet. They also have their car in the background.

    Snapshots
    The set within the set. The snapshots are considered mini and there's a total of 75 including short prints. We pulled a total of twelve snapshots including Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch. I like the cork board background with the Polaroid picture pinned onto it. The post-it note is great and makes it look realistic.

    Hits
    Triple Gear Kyle Busch Race-Used Tire /25
    Our first hit was a Triple Gear Kyle Busch Race-Used Tire. It's numbered out of 25 and the triple gear are available in three levels. This Kyle Busch is level one since it only has one tire piece. Odds (1:30)

    Signature Series Eclipse Kasey Kahne Race-Used Shoe /12
    The big hit of the box was this Kasey Kahne Signature Series Race-Used Shoe. It's numbered out of 12 and not only features a piece of his shoe but his autograph as well. These are hobby-only, which means you can't find them in retail packs. Odds (1:90)
     
    FINAL RATINGS

    Base - 5/5
    Design - 4/5
    Fun - 5/5
    Value - 4/5

    Total - 18/20

    What I liked about the product?
    There are a couple of sets to collect including parallels and the snapshots. The more sets available, the better. The racing product hits are better than other sports because of the many different memorabilia collectors can collect, from the tire to the sheet metal to the driver's uniform.

    What I didn't like about the product?
    Some of the inserts are almost identical. I see the different designs in the showman and preferred line but they have the same concept with having their cars in the background.

    I'd like to thank Press Pass for giving me the opportunity to open and review this product. For more information on all their products, visit them at www.presspassinc.com.

    Upcoming Appearance - Katy Perry


    Katy Perry Launches Her New Fragrance Meow at The Grove

    Wednesday, December 14
    3:00 - 7:00 pm

    Best-selling superstar Katy Perry launches her second fragrance, “Meow! by Katy Perry,” debuting exclusively at Nordstrom stores nationwide and Nordstrom.com. 

    Purchase a 3.4oz bottle of Meow! or Purr by Katy Perry and have the opportunity to meet Katy Perry December 14th from 3 - 7pm at the Grove, have your fragrance bottle autographed and a professional photograph taken with her.*

    Visit the Fragrance department at Nordstrom at the Grove now to pre-order.

    *A purchase of a 3.4oz bottle of Meow! or Purr must be made at Nordstrom at The Grove. The first 200 customers to make their purchase and pick up their purchase on Wednesday, December 14, will have the opportunity to meet Katy Perry; as time permits. Customers who pre-order will have first priority.

    Upcoming Appearance - Leeann Tweeden


    Leeann Tweeden!

    She host Poker After Dark and The National Heads Up Poker Championship on NBC. She's also the December 2011 cover girl for Playboy.

    Help raise money for her non-profit organization, Heroes & Patriots. They are accepting donations. {Tweet}

    January 7, 2012
    Time: TBA

    Farrell's Ice Cream Parlour
    799 The Shops At Mission Viejo
    Mission Viejo, CA 92691
    (949) 364-5411


    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    Upcoming Appearance - Roger Owens "The Peanut Man"


    Roger Owens is the famed peanut vendor who tosses bags of peanuts under-the-leg, behind-the-back, and two at a time, all with unbelievable accuracy, and to those seated even more than 30 rows away. Roger has charmed and amazed generations of fans with his show within a show at Dodger Stadium for nearly 45 years, and 50 years if you include the Coliseum from '58 to '61. {Roger Owens website}

    Want to meet the Famous Peanut Man from Dodger Stadium? 


    South Bay Baseball Cards
    1751 Pacific Coast Highway
    Lomita, CA 90717

    December 3, 2011
    Pack Opening Party
    3pm

    Photo by: Culture Shlock

    South Bay Cards Pack Opening Party - December 3rd

    South Bay Cards next pack opening party is December 3rd @ 3pm!

    You don't have to be in store to participate. You can join us online on BlogTV!



    To participate you can buy your pack in store or online by clicking on any of these links:

    Baseball: http://sbaycards.net/2011-christmas-baseball-super-pack-p-30589.html
    Basketball: http://sbaycards.net/2011-christmas-basketball-super-pack-p-30590.html
    Football: http://sbaycards.net/2011-christmas-football-super-pack-p-30591.html
    Special Pack: http://sbaycards.net/2011-christmas-special-super-pack-p-30592.html

    Every pack round will have 4 prizes along with 4 "BADDABING" prizes. Each pack bought will get you 1 ticket to the Grand Prize drawing.

    South Bay Baseball Cards
    1751 Pacific Coast Highway
    Lomita, CA 90717

    If you have any questions, don't hesitate to call them at 1-888-889-7575 or email them sbaycards@aol.com.

    Upcoming Appearance - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


    Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
    Basketball Hall of Famer

    He will be signing copies of What Color Is My World?

    February 4, 2012
    2:00 PM

    Barnes & Noble 
    189 Grove Drive Suite K 30
    Los Angeles, CA 90036

    --------------------------------------------------

    February 5, 2012
    7:00 PM 

    Barnes & Noble 
    Fortune Drive
    Irvine, CA

    Sunday, November 27, 2011

    LAUNFD Basketball Game Recap


    LAUNFD held a charity event that featured some current NBA players. The game was played at LA Southwest College. Baron Davis and Tina Thompson put the whole event together.

    I won two tickets from Baron Davis on Twitter. I invited my buddy Alex to the game. The doors were suppose to open at 3pm, so that's the time we arrived. They didn't allow fans into the gym until about 3:30pm. They gave away free t-shirts to everyone in attendance.


    Some of the players came out before the game started and began shoot around. As we were waiting for the game to start, Alex noticed The Professor was standing along the baseline with some friends. We headed over and took a picture. He was very nice.


    The game started at 5pm and there was a national anthem. They introduced all of the players for both the black and white team.


    Black Team
    Nick Young
    Trevor Ariza
    Craig Smith
    Amir Johnson
    Jordan Hamilton


    White Team
    Baron Davis
    Matt Barnes
    DeMar DeRozan
    James Harden
    Dorrell Wright
    Ryan Hollins

    They played 8 minute quarters and had a running clock unless there was a foul. It was nice watching a fast paced game with little fouls. DeMar DeRozan had a couple of sick dunks and Jordan Hamilton is going to be a great player in the NBA. I can't wait to see how he does in Denver this season.

    The game went into overtime. There was about five seconds left when Matt Barnes threw a full court pass to Baron Davis who just threw the ball up to the hoop because he was falling out of bounds. DeMar DeRozan was there for the rebound and laid it in the for game-winning bucket.

    After the game, fans were allowed on the court. Some players even gave away their jerseys to fans. In the corner of the gym they had a set-up for the media. ESPN, ABC, and CBS had a couple of reporters at the game including JA Adande from Around the Horn. I was able to get a couple of pictures with the players.

    Check out Ballislife's Top 10 plays:


    I want to thank LAUNFD, Baron Davis and the rest of the guys for putting on a great game.

    UCLA-USC Contest Winners!

    It was an ugly game for my Bruins. The USC Trojans won 50-0 and Rick Neuheisel was still the coach when I woke up this morning.

    I want to give a special thanks to Tracy and Panini for providing us with the prizes for this contest.

    We had a total of 25 entries which means that we had two winners.


    Congrats to JPK, who was the only person to go a perfect 10/10. You have the first choice of which prize you want between the (4) 8x10 USC players or the 2011 Absolute Memorabilia Box.

    Also, congrats to our 2nd place winner, Spiegel83 who went 9/10. You will receive the remaining prize that isn't selected.

    There was a total of 4 people who had 9 correct answers so the tiebreaker question was used. Curtis McNeal had a total of 124 rushing yards and Speigel83 clinched it with his guess of 121.

    Prize #1
    Prize #2

    Please send me an e-mail with your prize selection and mailing address. My e-mail address is losangelesinspiration@gmail.com.

    Thanks to everyone who participated and Panini for being kind enough to provide these prizes. Be on the look out for a future contest coming in December for college football.

    Saturday, November 26, 2011

    Pac-12 Championship - UCLA Bruins @ Oregon Ducks


    The 2011 Pac-12 championship game has been set. The UCLA Bruins will take on the Oregon Ducks at Autzen Stadium. Oregon host the game based on having a better record.

    The USC/UCLA game would have been big on the national stage if USC weren't still being punished for breaking NCAA rules. Since USC is ineligible, that puts UCLA into the championship.

    The winner of the Pac-12 Championship will go on to the BCS Rose Bowl game on January 2nd at 5 p.m. PT.

    The inaugural Pac-12 Championship Football Game
    UCLA Bruins vs. Oregon Ducks
    Friday, December 2 
    at 5 p.m. PT on Fox

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011

    The Ultimate Fighter Viewing Party With Michael Bisping


    The Ultimate Fighter
    Team Bisping vs. Team Miller

    Final Episode Viewing Party

    Special Appearances by Season 14 Coaches:
    Michael Bisping
    Tiki Goshn
    Rob McCullough
    Brady Fink

    November 23, 2011
    8:00 pm

    Beachfront 301 (Ultimate Training Center)
    301 Main Street Suite 101
    Huntington Beach, CA

    *Raffles and Give-aways
    *Gym Memberships
    *Apparel
    *Free Stuff!

    Monday, November 21, 2011

    Dodgers Announce 2012 Promotional Schedule

    Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series featuring Sandy Koufax will highlight this season’s giveaways

    LOS ANGELES - The Los Angeles Dodgers announced the 2012 promotional schedule today. The long list of giveaways in place for Dodger Stadium’s 50th Anniversary season is packed with fan favorite items and collectibles. The Dodgers will give away 10 bobbleheads, the most ever offered, as part of the Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series and the collection will include a bobblehead of legendary Dodger pitcher Sandy Koufax on August 7 (vs. ATL).

    The unprecedented Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series, which includes 10 total items scheduled throughout the 2012 season, will feature some of the most unforgettable Dodgers in Los Angeles history. The Dodger legends that will be featured will be unveiled leading up to Opening Day at Dodger Stadium, which is Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at 1:10 p.m. versus Pittsburgh.

    The Dodgers play at home on five holidays during the 2012 season. Mother’s Day will feature a tote bag giveaway and post-game walk around the park, $1 Dodger Dogs will be offered on Memorial Day and Labor Day, Father’s Day will include a sports bag giveaway and post-game catch on the field and celebratory fireworks are scheduled for the Fourth of July.

    The 2012 promotional schedule includes fan favorites such as Friday Night Fireworks, a cooler bag, a back-to-school backpack, fleece items and specialty caps. Fan Appreciation Day will conclude the regular season. A Matt Kemp Replica jersey will also be a new offering for 2012. The full promotional schedule is now available at dodgers.com/promotions.

    The entire Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series will be included in a 10-game mini plan. A variety of 15-game mini plans are also available that include Opening Day and two bobblehead games from the Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series. The 25-game Pick ‘Em Mini Plan features the most flexibility, best mini plan locations, Opening Day and the opportunity to purchase discounted parking.

    Mini plan pricing starts at $8 per seat with Field Level seats starting at only $28. Information on season ticket options including mini plans is available now at dodgers.com/miniplans.

    FRIDAY NIGHT FIREWORKS (April 13, April 27, May 11, May 18, May 25, June 15, June 29, July 13, August 3, August 24, August 31, September 14, September 28)
    The Dodgers will bring back fan-favorite Friday Night Fireworks for the 2012 season. Fans can watch the fireworks show from the outfield grass after the game. Additionally, a Wednesday fireworks show will take place on July 4th.

    $1 DODGER DOGS (May 28, September 3)

    The Dodgers are pleased to announce that fans attending games on Memorial Day and Labor Day will enjoy $1 Dodger Dogs.

    DODGER STADIUM GREATS BOBBLEHEAD SERIES (April 28, May 15, May 29, June 12, June 28, July 14, July 31, August 7, August 21, August 30)

    The most bobbleheads ever offered as part of Dodger Stadium’s 50th Anniversary are scheduled throughout the season. The Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series is highlighted by the Sandy Koufax bobblehead on August 7 (vs. ATL).

    FLEECE ITEM GIVEAWAYS (April 24, September 13)

    The Dodgers will have two fleece item giveaway nights in 2012. Fleece items will be given to fans on April 24 (vs. ATL) and September 13 (vs. STL).

    SPECIALTY ITEMS (Replica Dodger Stadium, Cooler Bag, Mother’s Day Tote Bag, T-shirt, Father’s Day Sports Bag, Hello Kitty Giveaway, Snapback Cap and Matt Kemp Replica Jersey)

    Dodger specialty items are also highlights of the 2012 promotional schedule and include a replica Dodger Stadium on April 14 (vs. SD), cooler bag on May 7 (vs. SF), Mother’s Day tote bag on May 13 (vs. COL), Father’s Day sports bag on June 17 (vs. CHW), Hello Kitty item on July 1 (vs. NYM), snapback cap on August 5 (vs. CHI) and a Matt Kemp replica jersey on September 4 (vs. SD). 

    KIDS ITEMS (Kids Jackie Robinson Sweatband, Kids Replica Jersey, Kids Back-to-School backpack)

    Dodger kids’ items on the 2012 promotional schedule include Jackie Robinson sweatbands on Jackie Robinson Day on April 15 (vs. SD), replica jerseys on April 29 (vs.  WAS) and back-to-school backpacks on August 26 (vs. MIA).

    VIVA LOS DODGERS DAYS (April 15, April 29, May 1, May 20, May 27, July 1, July 15, August 5, August 26, September 2, September 16, September 29)

    Returning for the 2012 season is Viva Los Dodgers, a season-long celebration that occurs each Sunday of every Dodger homestand celebrating Hispanic culture in Los Angeles and the legacy of Latin American Dodger players past and present. Starting two hours prior to each Sunday’s game, fans can enjoy live music and a family-friendly celebration. The initiative culminates with La Gran Fiesta: Viva Los Dodgers on Saturday, September 29.

    2012 Promotional Schedule

    4/10     Opening Day, 50th Anniversary of Dodger Stadium
    4/13     Friday Night Fireworks  
    4/14     Replica Dodger Stadium               
    4/15     Kids Jackie Robinson Sweatbands, Jackie Robinson Night,Viva Los Dodgers
    Day, Kids Run the Bases
    4/24     Fleece Item                                 
    4/27     Friday Night Fireworks  
    4/28     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #1
    4/29     Kids Replica Jersey, Viva Los Dodgers Day, Kids Run the Bases
    5/7       Cooler Bag         
    5/11     Friday Night Fireworks                  
    5/13     Mother’s Day Tote Bag & Walk Around the Park
    5/15     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #2
    5/18     Friday Night Fireworks  
    5/20     Kids Item, Viva Los Dodgers Day, Kids Run the Bases
    5/25     Friday Night Fireworks                  
    5/27     Viva Los Dodgers Day, Kids Run the Bases
    5/28     Memorial Day - $1 Dodger Dogs               
    5/29     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #3                                                
    6/11     T-shirt  
    6/12     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #4                                
    6/15     Friday Night Fireworks  
    6/17     Father’s Day Sports Bag & Postgame Catch
    6/28     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #5
    6/29     Friday Night Fireworks
    7/1       Hello Kitty Giveaway, Viva Los Dodgers, Kids Run the Bases
    7/3       Dodger Stadium 50th Anniversary LA Cap              
    7/4       4th of July Fireworks
    7/13     Friday Night Fireworks  
    7/14     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #6
    7/15     Viva Los Dodgers, Kids Run the Bases                    
    7/31     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #7                                
    8/3       Friday Night Fireworks
    8/5       Snapback Cap, Viva Los Dodgers, Kids Run the Bases
    8/7       Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #8                                
    8/21     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #9                
    8/24     Friday Night Fireworks
    8/26     Kids Back to School Backpack, Viva Los Dodgers, Kids Run the Bases
    8/30     Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead #10              
    8/31     Friday Night Fireworks
    9/2       Viva Los Dodgers, Kids Run the Bases
    9/3       Labor Day - $1 Dodger Dogs
    9/4       Matt Kemp Replica Jersey           
    9/13     Fleece Item
    9/14     Friday Night Fireworks
    9/16     Viva Los Dodgers, Kids Run the Bases
    9/28     Friday Night Fireworks  
    9/29     La Gran Fiesta – Viva Los Dodgers
    9/30     Fan Appreciation Day, Kids Run the Bases
    10/2     Dodger Giveaway Night

    For more information on 2012 giveaways and schedule, please visit www.dodgers.com/promotions.

    LAUNFD: "For The City" Basketball Experience


    LAUNFD Presents "For The City" Basketball Experience 
    Hosted by: Baron Davis & Tina Thompson 

    Come out to watch the LAUNFD crew play basketball this Sunday.

    Nov 27, 2011 @ 4pm 
    Doors open at 3:00 pm

    LA Southwest College
    1600 West Imperial Highway
    Los Angeles, California 90047

    If you have any questions, call: (310) 853-0636

    Prices:
    $25 General Admission
    $125 Courtside


    Players already confirmed to be in attendance or playing*:
    DeMar DeRozan
    Paul Pierce
    Craig Smith
    Chase Budinger
    Amir Johnson
    Jared Dudley
    Jason Collins
    Jarron Collins
    James Harden
    Jordan Hamilton

    *I will add to the list if more players confirm.

    Upcoming Appearance - RaiderFest (Tim Brown & Marcus Allen)


    Hall of Fame Sports
    presents
    RAIDERFEST 

    Raider Nation a day is being made just for you. Come on out and show your black & silver pride. Guests on hand thus far will be Tim Brown & Marcus Allen. More are being added for what will surely be one heck of a day for any Raiders fan..



    Marcus Allen

    Flat Autograph: $79
    Mini Helmet / Football: $89
    Helmet / Jersey Autograph: $99
    Inscription: $25


    Tim Brown

    Flat Autograph: $69
    Mini Helmet / Football: $79
    Helmet / Jersey Autograph: $89
    Inscription: $25

    I'll add more players when they are announced.

    Sunday, November 20, 2011

    LA Galaxy Win The 2011 MLS Cup


    What a game! The atmosphere was amazing from start to finish. The Galaxy had so many opportunities to score and it was just a matter of time before one went in the back of the net.

    Landon Donovan scored in the 72nd minute with help from David Beckham and Robbie Keane. The LA Galaxy won the championship by the score of 1-0 over the Houston Dynamo.

    Donovan was named the 2011 MLS MVP.

    I hope David Beckham returns next season.



    From the Galaxy:

    CARSON, Calif. – The LA Galaxy spent all night on Sunday looking to land a decisive blow en route to a historic MLS championship, and finally got the moment from all three heavy hitters on The Home Depot Center marquee.

    Landon Donovan finished off a gorgeous buildup through fellow Designated Players David Beckham and Robbie Keane in the 72nd minute, pushing the Galaxy to a 1-0 win over the Houston Dynamo in MLS Cup 2011 and gift-wrapping the third league championship in franchise history.

    The moment, which played out in front of 30,281 fans that braved uncharacteristically wet and cool conditions in Southern California, also punctuated one of the best seasons for any team in league history. The Galaxy won the Supporters’ Shield during the regular season and steadily drove their way through the postseason, capped by an impressively solid performance against a Dynamo team that struggled to keep pace all night.

    The win also gave head coach Bruce Arena the third MLS title of his storied career, and likely exorcised any demons from the last time the club was in the title game. That showing ended in a loss to Real Salt Lake in penalty kicks in 2009, a moment the club harped on all week as they carried the weight of heavy favorites into Sunday night.

    But this one played out vastly different than the 2009 loss, and was summed up on the game-winning goal. The play began with a nifty flick header from Beckham to a surging Keane, who drifted to the middle of the field roughly 25 yards out and patiently waited for the chance to strike.

    Then came the onrushing Donovan, who threaded his way past the Houston back line and latched onto a pitch-perfect Keane pass before coolly slotting a right-footed shot just past Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall and into the back of the net.

    It was an MLS-record 20th career postseason goal for the Galaxy captain, who was voted the game’s MVP, and his fourth all-time in the MLS Cup. He celebrated in a fashion familiar to fans even casually aware of his game-winner for the United States against Algeria in last summer’s World Cup: a sprint to the corner flag, a slide on the wet grass, a moment in history.

    While it was a cathartic and celebratory scene for the Galaxy, it was an equally tough pill to swallow for the Dynamo, who were back in the MLS Cup the first time since winning back-to-back Cups in 2006 and 2007. But Houston, who played without playmaker and MVP finalist Brad Davis (quad strain), never managed to create the chances they did during Eastern Conference playoff wins over the Philadelphia Union or Sporting Kansas City, and settled for a rope-a-dope approach that never paid off.

    The loss was also the first in Cup history for Houston head coach Dominic Kinnear, who carried four MLS titles into the game as a head coach and an assistant.

    The Galaxy, meanwhile, got the entire bang for their buck on a night when it mattered.

    Keane was active all night and clearly healthy, despite his recent European Cup qualifying matches for the Republic of Ireland. Donovan was pesky and opportunistic, and Beckham played the role of the Galaxy’s point guard with ease. Time and time again the Galaxy offense ran though Beckham, who played a withdrawn role in the midfield and coolly drifted passes over the top or into space for the Galaxy front line.

    If the game was indeed Beckham’s last in MLS, it was a fitting end to an era. He was dangerous all night with the ball on his foot, but certainly not invincible. After threading pass after pass into danger, he came up lame in the minutes after Donovan’s goal, clearly favoring a nagging back injury that has plagued him much of the season and could decide if he comes back next year.

    He was all smiles and embraced Donovan in a euphoric hug after his first MLS Cup win, however, leaving those to wonder into the offseason if he’ll be back for another shot or walk away a champion.

    Despite Beckham’s play, however, the chances went wanting for more than an hour before Donovan’s game-winner. LA thought they’d finally cracked the code in the 57th minute, when Beckham found Keane in the open behind the Houston back line. But even when Keane somehow squeezed a shot through Hall’s legs and into the back of the net, there was a problem: The Irish striker was offside before he even got the shot off, and the goal was disallowed.

    Keane had a solid chance in the 49th minute as well, but he trickled a shot wide of the far post after running into a loose ball that caromed off Houston midfielder Corey Ashe’s head and into space behind the Dynamo defense.

    The first half played out much as the hearty home crowd would have hoped, with the Galaxy controlling the tempo and creating the most offensive chances. The best early opportunity came in the 12th minute, when wide open striker Adam Cristman zeroed in on a Beckham corner kick in the box. But Cristman – who started in place of injured regular Chad Barrett – thumped his header wide of the right post.

    Cristman was at it again in the 27th minute, after Donovan and Beckham did the dirty work to set up a golden chance at the back post. Donovan cut inside from the right flank against Houston defender Jermaine Taylor and laid off a pass to Beckham, who drifted another dangerous cross into the box. Cristman was there, but again skied the header off the mark before smacking into Hall in front of the goal.

    Galaxy postseason hero Mike Magee had his chance before the break, too, but missed the moment. After Keane picked his way through the Houston defense near the top of the box in the 45th minute, he laid a pass off to a streaking Magee, who rocketed a one-time shot into the stands. Magee, who scored in each game this postseason leading into the Cup, could only tug at his hair and lament the missed opportunity, punctuating a frustrating first half of missed chances for LA.

    The Dynamo, meanwhile, seemed doomed to sit back and take the punches. They managed just one shot on goal on the night, but Danny Cruz’s left-footed shot from distance in the 44th minute was easily swallowed up by Galaxy goalkeeper Josh Saunders.

    And they certainly took their lumps as well, most notably when defender Geoff Cameron went down in a heap in the 31st minute after his right leg got caught under Cristman on a tackle in the Dynamo box. Cameron was clearly favoring the injury the rest of the night, and it was a moment scary enough to prompt reserve defenders Eddie Robinson and Hunter Freeman to slowly begin warming up for pinch-hit duty.

    But even an entirely healthy Cameron might not have saved the Dynamo on this night. It was largely a one-sided affair from the opening kick, an emphatic final note on a remarkable season and a moment the Galaxy savored on their field and, most importantly, on their terms.

    Picture credit: LA Galaxy Facebook

    Upcoming Appearance - Dan Haren


    Meet Dan Haren

    November 20
    1:00 - 2:30 pm

    State Farm Insurance Exhibit 
    (Kentia Hall)

    Los Angeles Convention Center
    1201 South Figueroa St
    Los Angeles, CA

    Upcoming Appearance - Michelle Wie


    Meet Golfer Michelle Wie

    She will be at Kia’s display @LA Auto Show to meet her fans and sign autographs. While you’re there, check out the custom golf-themed Soul featuring Michelle’s own artwork.

    November 26, 2011
    11:00 am to 1:00 pm

    Kia exhibit in South Hall
    Los Angeles Convention Center
    1201 South Figueroa St
    Los Angeles, CA

    Upcoming Appearance - JoJo


    Meet singer JoJo

    Westfield Culver City is having a Pajama Party for Black Friday with a Live performance by JoJo at midnight.

    First 100 fans will get a photo with JoJo and an autographed picture.

    November 25, 2011
    Midnight

    Westfield Culver City
    6000 Sepulveda Blvd.
    Culver City, CA 90230

    Saturday, November 19, 2011

    Blake Griffin & Rob Dyrdek Signing Recap


    Blake Griffin made an appearance today at the LA Auto Show. He was scheduled to sign autographs from 1-2pm at the Kia Exhibit. Alex (Lawler's Law: First to 100 Wins), and I arrived to the Convention Center at 9am and went straight to Kia. First in line to meet Blake!

    There was about 100 people in line by the time Blake was scheduled to start signing. He didn't show up until about 1:15 because of LA traffic, but began signing right away. They didn't allow any outside items and provided an 8x10 photo of Blake Griffin with a Kia car. They also gave us a Panini certificate of authenticity for the photo.



    Last night when I purchased my Auto Show ticket, I noticed that Rob Dyrdek was going to be signing at the same time Blake Griffin was scheduled. We headed over to the Chevrolet exhibit and the line wasn't long. There was about 15 people waiting to meet Rob. He was taking pictures and signing postcards for everyone. I'm sure he would have signed outside items for those that brought anything for him. Since it was last minute, I just got the postcard and picture.



    Thanks to Blake Griffin, Kia, Rob Dyrdek, and Chevrolet for having these signings. They were organized and a lot of fun.

    My favorite car at the Auto Show.
    Hot Wheel Chevrolet Camaro
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    Friday, November 18, 2011

    Upcoming Appearance - Eric Dickerson


    Meet Eric Dickerson with KLAC and Steve Hartman

    November 20
    12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

    Acura Exhibit in South Hall

    Los Angeles Convention Center
    1201 South Figueroa St
    Los Angeles, CA

    Upcoming Appearance - Blake Griffin


    Meet Los Angeles Clipper Forward Blake Griffin. 

    Kia’s all about reaching great heights, so it makes perfect sense that they’re partnered with basketball star Blake Griffin. While you’re there check out the custom basketball-themed Optima Hybrid. 

    (Blake will only sign Kia provided autograph cards.)

    November 19, 2011
    1:00-2:00 pm

    Kia exhibit in South Hall
    Los Angeles Convention Center
    1201 South Figueroa St
    Los Angeles, CA

    Thanks to Alex for the tip

    Upcoming Appearance - Anze Kopitar


    Meet Anze Kopitar
    LA Kings

    December 2, 2011
    5:00 - 6:00 pm

    Sports Chalet
    201 E. Magnolia #145
    Burbank, CA 91502-1117

    Phone: (818) 558-3500

    Upcoming Appearance - Gene Simmons & Paul Stanley


    Meet Gene Simmons & Paul Stanley
    (founders of KISS)

    They will be signing copies of Archie Meets KISS

    It's a wristband event. They will be distributed starting at 10am with the purchase of the Comic.
    Limited to 100 fans. Two items per person

    November 30, 2011
    7:00 pm

    7018 Melrose Avenue
    Los Angeles, CA
    (323) 658-6047

    Thursday, November 17, 2011

    Upcoming Appearance - MLS Cup Kickoff


    Spend the day playing Kinect for Xbox 360 and FIFA 12, meet some of your favorite MLS players*, win prizes and more at Four Points LAX, the Official Fan Hotel of MLS Cup.

    November 19, 2011
    12-6 pm

    Player Appearances:
    12:00-1:30 pm 
    Sebastian LeToux (Philadelphia Union) 
    FIFA 12

    2:00-3:30 pm 
    Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Eathquake) 
    Shoot on Goal Kinect

    4:00-5:30pm
    CJ Sapong (Sporting KC) 
    Dance Central 2

    6:00-7:30 pm 
    Alejandro Moreno (Chivas USA) 
    Pickin' and Grinnin' in Brewster's with Great Beer & Live Music

    *Appearances subject to change

    Four Points Sheraton LAX
    9750 Airport Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA

    Clayton Kershaw Wins Cy Young


    Clayton Kershaw wins the Cy Young!

    2011 Stats - (21-5) 2.28 ERA 248 Ks
    Kershaw won the Pitching Triple Crown this season for the National League. He received 27 first place votes to win the 2011 Cy Young Award.

    It's the 10th time a Dodger has won the Cy Young award. He's the 8th different Dodger to win the award.

    Hopefully Matt Kemp can pay for Clayton's haircut.

    Watch Dodgers Shortstop Dee Gordon celebrate: Click Here

    Picture credit: Dodgers Twitter

    Wednesday, November 16, 2011

    Upcoming Appearance - Sean Alvarado & Leonardo


    Meet Galaxy defenders Sean Alvarado and Leonardo at the VW set up at the LA Auto Show. The players will be signing autographs and taking photos with fans.

    November 18, 2011
    2:00-3:00 pm

    VW Pavilion at The LA Auto Show
    Los Angeles Convention Center
    1201 South Figueroa St
    Los Angeles, CA

    Heidi Watney To Join Lakers Sideline In 2012

    Los Angeles with a victory over Boston! Even with the lockout happening, the Lakers are still finding ways to win.

    Heidi Watney will be joining the Lakers as a sideline reporter beginning the 2012-13 season on Time Warner Cable. The people in Boston are devastated by this news. Just look at some of the comments on the Yahoo article.

    She's prettier to look at than John Ireland. Follow her on Twitter, @HeidiWatney.

    Now let's get back to playing some basketball!

    From CSNNE:
    MILWAUKEE -- Play-by-play announcer Don Orsillo has signed a contract extension to remain with NESN, but the network's Red Sox telecasts will be without in-game reporter Heidi Watney next year, industry sources indicate. 
    Watney, whose contract had also expired, is leaving to work for Time Warner Cable in southern California. Time Warner Cable lured the Los Angeles Lakers away from Fox Sports West and KCAL-TV last February with a landmark 20-year deal said be worth in excess of $2.5 billion. 
    Watney will work as a sideline reporter on the Time Warner Cable Laker telecasts, beginning with the 2012-13 season. She had worked on NESN's Red Sox telecasts and other Red Sox programming for the past four seasons. Her new job allows her to return to her native California.

    Watney becomes the third on-air personality to leave NESN this year, joining former Bruins' host Kathryn Tappen, who left to join the NHL Network, and former NESN Daily anchor Jade McCarthy to return to her native Philadelphia.

    David Beckham Named MLS Comeback Player of the Year


    CARSON, Calif. – Major League Soccer (MLS) announced today that LA Galaxy midfielder David Beckham has been selected as the League’s Comeback Player of the Year. The first Galaxy player ever to win the award, Beckham finished with an MLS-career-high 15 assists on the season while helping lead the Galaxy to their record seventh MLS Cup. Now in his fifth season with the Galaxy, Beckham was limited to just seven games during the 2010 season after tearing his left Achilles tendon in March 2010 while on loan to AC Milan of Serie A.

    With Beckham orchestrating the attack, the Galaxy scored the fifth most goals in the league and finished with a league-best 67 points, the second most in MLS history, from a 19-5-10 record to repeat as Supporters’ Shield winners. Beckham also played a pivotal role in the Galaxy advancing in the CONCACAF Champions League, leading the team with two assists in four games in the competition. He has continued that fine form in the MLS Cup Playoffs, tallying an assist in all three of the Galaxy’s postseason games so far to lead the club to a record seventh MLS Cup berth.Fully recovered from his injury and back with the club for a complete season for the first time since 2008, Beckham played in 26 of the Galaxy’s 34 regular season games, setting a new MLS-career-high for games played. Utilized primarily in central midfield, Beckham scored twice on the season while adding a team-high 15 assists, which were the second most in MLS. His team was 9-1-3 in the 13 games that he had an assist and won both games in which he scored, including a 2-1 win over Chicago on July 9 in which he scored the game-winning goal. Selected to the MLS All-Star team for the second time in his career, Beckham was named to the MLS Best XI for the first time in his Galaxy career last week.

    Beckham edged out fellow finalists Charlie Davies of D.C. United and Dominic Oduro of the Chicago Fire to win the Comeback Player of the Year award.

    Beckham and the rest of the Galaxy will look to win their third MLS Cup in club history and first since 2005 on Sunday, November 20 when they take on the Houston Dynamo in MLS Cup 2011. That game, which is schedule to start at 6 p.m., will be played at The Home Depot Center and can be seen live on ESPN and Galavision in the United States and in more than 100 countries around the world. For more information about MLS Cup 2011, please visit www.lagalaxy.com or www.mlssoccer.com.

    MLS Comeback Player of the Year Winners:
    2011: David Beckham – LA Galaxy
    2010: Bobby Convey – San Jose Earthquakes
    2009: Zach Thornton – Chivas USA
    2008: Kenny Cooper – FC Dallas
    2007: Eddie Johnson – Kansas City Wizards
    2006: Richard Mulrooney – FC Dallas
    2005: Chris Klein – Kansas City Wizards
    2004: Brian Ching – San Jose Earthquakes
    2003: Chris Armas – Chicago Fire
    2002: Chris Klein – Kansas City Wizards
    2001: Troy Dayak – San Jose Earthquakes
    2000: Tony Meola – Kansas City Wizards