Every week, Chris Barth updates you on the important events in the sporting world – the ones you may have heard of and the ones you definitely missed. He's watching the games and calling things as he sees them. This is The Ref.

The Giants Won The Pennant, And Also The World Series

The San Francisco Baseball Giants swept the Detroit Tigers to win their second World Series in three years. TV viewership for the series was the lowest in history, but I bet the viewers in San Francisco were the highest, if you catch my drift. After the Giants' series-winning victory in extra innings, San Francisco fans rioted in the streets, lighting fires and flipping cars in an elaborate and complex piece of socio-political performance art, demonstrating the uprising of technology-hub cities as America's heartland industry-based cities flounder. Either that or they were really drunk and wanted to light shit on fire.

The New York Islanders Are Moving To Brooklyn

New York's second-favorite hockey team announced that it will be moving from its longtime home in Long Island to a newer, hipper neighborhood – the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Nets promptly derided the move, noting that they decided to move to the area "before it was mainstream." The Islanders were quick to note that the NHL is about as far from mainstream as you can get.
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Jimmie Johnson Took The Sprint Cup Race Lead

With a win at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday, Jimmie Johnson took the lead in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series with 2291 points. NASCAR: Where the scoring's made up and the points don't matter! Seriously, go try to read about how the Chase for the Championship is scored. It's like the explanation is written in calculus.

Football Happened

  • The New York Giants narrowly held on to beat the Dallas Cowboys after squandering a 23-0 lead. The Cowboys nearly pulled off the comeback with a last second touchdown by Dez Bryant that was negated when refs determined that the tip of Bryant's finger landed out of bounds. Nationwide, idiots made "Just The Tip" jokes.
  • The Patriots and Rams played in London, in the now annual Across-The-Pond Football Reach-Out-Athon. Patriots forward Rob Gronkowski scored two goals, and striker Tom Brady had four assists en route to defeating the Rams. The game was one of the longest in NFL history, due to constant stoppages while the referees handed out red cards and set up penalty kicks after handballs. It was a real mess, and makes you wonder why the NFL ever thought this was a good idea.
  • The Pittsburgh Steelers wore bumblebee uniforms.
  • Alex Smith completed 18 of 19 passes and threw 3 TDs on Monday Night against the Arizona Cardinals. Afterwards, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said the game wasn't a much-needed confidence boost for Smith. "I think it's just a lot of gobble-gobble turkey," said Harbaugh. "Just gobble, gobble, gobble turkey from jive-turkey gobblers, you know?" That quote is 100% true, and therefore, no joke is required.
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Serena Williams Won The WTA Championship

Serena Williams took down No. 2 seed Maria Sharapova to win the WTA Championship in Istanbul, her seventh tournament win this year. She didn't drop a single set in the tournament, ending her 2012 season losing just one of her final 51 sets. Williams will spend the offseason oiling her joints and recharging her batteries to prepare for the year 00110010001100000011000100110011.

The NBA Season Started

  • The Houston Rockets, led by new faces James Harden and Jeremy Lin, defeated the Detroit Pistons 105-96. James Harden, who scored 37 points in the contest, was congratulated by San Francisco Giants pitchers Sergio Romo and Brian Wilson and given a plaque recognizing his "Extraordinary Achievement In Beating A Detroit Team And Having A Ridiculous Beard."
  • Anthony Davis scored 21 points in his NBA debut, proving that the Hornets were wise to draft him first overall in the 2012 draft. Also, Ludacris dressed up as Davis for Halloween, proving that, hey! Ludacris is still around and doing things! Good for him!
  • Dwight Howard made just 3 of 14 free throws in his first regular season game with the Los Angeles Lakers. He immediately drew comparisons to a well-known former Lakers center infamous for missing freethrows, Blind Willie Missalot. I bet you thought I was going to say Shaq, didn't you? C'mon, even Shaq shot better than 21% at the line.
  • The Knicks/Nets game was postponed due to Hurricane Sandy. The game, slated to be the first official game in the Nets' new Brooklyn arena, was postponed due to ongoing power and transportation issues in New York. Remarkably, the postponement set a record for the earliest point in the season both the Knicks' and Nets' seasons have been under water.

Bradley Wiggins Won The Velo d'Or Award

Cycling fan was delighted to hear that British cyclist Bradley Wiggins won the Velo d'Or Award as the best rider of 2012. The Olympic gold medalist and reigning Tour d'France winner was also retroactively awarded third place in the 2009 Tour de France after Lance Armstrong was stripped of his titles. A good week for Bradley Wiggins, who, if I'm not mistaken, was previously best known for helping Frodo Baggins destroy the one ring to rule them all in the fires of Mordor.

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