The Washington Post

Wilbon defends the Kastles’ win streak

(Via @MonumentalNtwrk)
(Via @MonumentalNtwrk)

Little did I know the passions that could be aroused during discussions of World Team Tennis win streaks. Like, first, some people complained that the lamestream media were belittling the team’s 34-match win streak.


Then, some people complained that the lamestream media were ignoring the much longer win streak of the San Diego Sockers of the United Alliance of Super Awesome Amazing Indoor Soccer Playing Awesome People.

“The Sockers have been around since 1977,” one Sockers fan wrote to me. “You have a lot to learn about soccer…and sports in general. I bet you’ve never been to a game.”

I responded, telling this happy chap that while it’s true I’ve never been to a UASAAISPAP game (or the city of San Diego), I’ve been to dozens of D.C. United games in three states.

“Figured you’ve never been to an indoor game,” he replied. “Too bad you’ve lived an unfulfilled life. Let me know when the Kastles play on network television.”

So that settled that, at least for an hour or so, until Tony Reali asked Kornheiser and Wilbon on PTI how to judge this win streak.

“It’s a _____ fact that the Washington Kastles have broken the Lakers’ record 33-game winning streak,” Reali said, asking the former Posties to fill in the blank.

“It’s a self-inflating fact,” Kornheiser said, being all reasonable-like. “The Washington Kastles are a tennis team. They have a three-week season. And if you go out of town for July, you have missed it. To put them in the same sentence as the Los Angeles Lakers is stretching a little bit. They’re led now by the retired Martina Hingis and the 40-year old Leander Paes….”

“She’s still playing, how could she be retired?” Wilbon said, as the video showed owner Mark Ein. “That’s my man Mark Ein!”

“I know you’re a big fan,” Kornheiser said. “I know you’re a big fan. They’re not the Lakers.”

“That’s interesting, because all you do is slurp now the Redskins,” Wilbon responded. “You double-slurp the Nationals. I mean, there’s no slurp-meter….

“I like Mark Ein fine,” Kornheiser said, attempting not to be left behind in the Mark Ein love-fest, because surely viewers tune into ESPN to find out how panelists feel about Mark Ein, who has managed to Mark Ein his way to about 17 Mark Ein mentions just in this Mark Einish paragraph alone.

“It’s a marketable fact,” Wilbon said, answering the question at last. “Mark Ein knows how to do this. The owner of this whole thing, the orchestrator of this whole thing, who’s my friend. I’m gonna be at the Kastles event on Monday night. You should come with me.”

“That’s great,” Kornheiser said. “What percentage of people in America know there’s World Team Tennis at the moment?”

“It’s probably sort of small,” Wilbon admitted. “Serena and Venus played for the Kastles!”

Kornheiser tried to move on, but Reali wasn’t having it.

“Hold on hold on hold on,” said Reali, who is evidently not friends with Mark Ein. “What just happened there? Wilbon’s got the Kastles over the Lakers? That just happened?”

Turns out the Kastles lost on Wednesday night, by the way. Just 24 hours after setting the greatest winning streak of all time in any athletic setting. But by that point, they had already landed on PTI and SportsCenter. That’s a marketable fact.

Also, I’m kind of friendly with Mark Ein.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.



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