Anyone ready for a BigApple Olympic Games?

This piece isn’t exactly soccer, but since it is winter, we can fantasize about if the winter Olympics were held in New York City. I figured this piece should satisfy the appetites of soccer fans who love the snow, ice and cold.

By Michael Lewis Editor

“Good afternoon, everyone, I’m Savannah Guthrie and welcome to the Today Show. Today, in a special edition, we’re coming to you live from New York City for the 2022 BigApple Winter Games.

“This special program and blizzard are a presentation of NBC News and an extension of the Today Show, which as you know, has gone 24/7. But I digress, because it is time to do some more unabashed shilling, hype and overhype for these fabulous Winter Games, as we are doing at the Beijing Winter Olympics.

“We originally had planned to televise a similar set of events from our nation’s capital. But according to reports, it has frozen over and broken off from the mainland and may be floating around somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean. We’ll have more on that later.

“We’ve got a busy schedule. So, take it away, Tara Lipinski on Seventh Avenue.”

“Thank you, Savannah. We’re here on Seventh Avenue in Manhattan for the Ice Slipping competition. This is an event that anyone can enter, but it does take a certain kind of skill to perform. Remember, entrants are judged on the way they slip, the form of their fall and the embarrassed look on their faces. And of course, it has to be spontaneous.

“Earlier today, we had a sad note. A man was disqualified for deliberately setting himself up for fall. The man, Theoorescu Goodynovnov of Hartsdale, New York, allegedly was wearing non-traction shows. He had been charged with using performance-enhancing products by using a banned substance to slick the soles of his shoes with ice. A black eye for a sport that already has enough bumps and bruises. Johnny Weir will have an exclusive interview with him later today.

“Back to Savannah.”

“Thank you, Tara. Now, we switch you to Mike Tirico for the car burying event.”

“Thanks Savannah. Of course, it isn’t all fun and games during a blizzard. Life must go on and streets must be plowed. We are here on Kings Highway in Brooklyn, witnessing one of the most grueling events of the BigApple Winter Games. It is a race against time, yet it demands the most patience and skill of its performers. City snowplows have been out six three this morning trying to plow in as many residents’ cars as they can.

“Speed isn’t the only factor in this event. How much snow is piled on the car and how long it takes for the bewildered owner to get out are also important factors in determining the gold medalist. Plus, they have to make sure they don’t damage any of the vehicles. Contact is forbidden and means immediate disqualification. Savannah.

“Last year’s winner, Mr. and Mrs. Steven Glade of 69th Avenue in Queens, took six hours to get out of their parking space. Naturally, this year’s unfortunate person or family, like the Maxwells, will receive free towing to the garage of his or her choice. Now to Al Roker.”

“Thank you very much, Mike. This is Al Roker, and we are in the winter wonderland called Flushing Meadows Corona Park. One of the perks of being a weather forecaster is covering some of my predictions. As you might remember, I predicted just a smattering of snow. Instead, I was off by only two feet. A minor discrepancy. This event is a test of accuracy and longevity as hundreds of youngsters are readying their snowballs to fire at passing automobiles. Rocky Maxwell….., the favorite, met with an untimely disaster barely a few minutes ago when one of his throws accidentally struck a patrol car in a practice run disqualifying him from the competition and getting a ticket. He, unfortunately, overthrew his mark. As it turns out, Maxwell had hit five consecutive hubcaps and needed only one more hit to tie the world record. Surely, here is a young man who knows the agony of defeat. Savannah?”

“Uh, Al, agony of defeat is used by another network, not ours.”

“Savannah, I was just trying to make a pun that could be as easy as A-B-C.”

“Al, very punny, very punny. But enough of that. Yes, folks, this is Savannah Guthrie again. Before we take you to Al Michaels and Traying Event at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, New Jersey, we’d like to bring you this humorous note from the car burying event.

“It seems that a city snow plow, apparently mistaking another plow for a car, has accidentally plowed in the other plow. Judges are meeting at this moment to determine what, if any sanctions will be made. But for now, let’s go to Al Michaels across the Hudson River.

“Yes, thank you very much, Savannah. I’m here at FDU, home of the Knights. You could not find a a better day for traying than today. The sky is overcast, a dingy gray. The snow is falling in a record-breaking fashion, and the wind-chill factor is a minus 10.

“An enthusiastic crowd of 1,500 has lined the slopes for the Grand Slalom, pitting Ken Warren of Westbury, New York against Doug Reich of Staten Island in what some observers are calling a match race for the ages. Ken, as you know, stole his tray from the student cafeteria, while Doug’s was custom made in Minnesota.

“And here they go. It’s pretty even. But wait a minute. Reich has taken a substantial lead. And too bad, he hit a tight curve and has been de-trayed. So, Warren will coast to traying gold. He has just past the finish line, not in record, but in a healthy 10.8767 seconds.

“From what I heard, they are going to give medals to everyone, not unlike what they do with youth soccer, where every player gets a trophy for participating. That certainly will water down the games. Another scandal. With this event now history, let’s take you to Craig Melvin for the street hockey finals on Woodland Street.”

“Al, we’ve got some sad news here. Right after the Babylon Five had tied this close, defensive game at 5-5, Jim Toscano of the Bronx Cheer accidentally iced the pick into a snowbank. And now no one has been able to find the puck. Judges have ruled this game a draw and the team will share the gold medals. Back to Savannah.”

“Okay, Craig. That about wraps it up from here. In the coming days we will take you to other events in and around the city and its environs, including the Zamboni racing gold-medal finals, roller derby ice skating, the car skidding competition and speed ice dancing.”

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at