Death Rocks NASCAR, Dramatic Bubba Wallace Returns, Dale Jr. Nearly Fried, Chase Elliott Called Out, Ryan Blaney Gives Bristol Shove

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Dramatic Bubba Wallace is BACK, people are mad at angry Chase Elliott, and NASCAR has rolled through Bristol and on to the second round of the playoffs.

But it’s tough to start with all of that and do our usual shtick before first addressing the Sherry Pollex news.

For those who were locked in on the NFL yesterday and missed it, Pollex — the former longtime girlfriend of Martin Truex Jr. — died from ovarian cancer at 44.

I’ll be honest, it was pretty jarring when I first saw it. I didn’t know Sherry Pollex obviously, but you sort of felt like you did because she was such a fixture in the garage before her and MTJ split earlier this year.

Anyway, we’ll get to some reaction here in a bit. After that, we can move on and make fun of Bubba Wallace like I know you all want.

Come on, Bubba. Again with the dramatic collapse by the car? I’m trying to help you here, buddy!

Four tires, some fuel and maybe some beefed up security for Denny Hamlin because he refuses to stop pissing off NASCAR fans.

Monday Morning Pit-Stop — the ‘Well, That Really Sucks’ edition — is LIVE.

NASCAR community reacts to Sherry Pollex death

So, yeah. No other way around it, that was a pretty crappy way to start an NFL Sunday. Didn’t see it coming. I didn’t even know she was still sick, much less that sick.

I mean, we really haven’t heard much from Sherry Pollex since her and Martin Truex Jr. split earlier this year, which was shocking in itself. People who date for nearly two decades usually just don’t break up. Weird. Sad.

They were together forever, including his championship run in 2017. Pollex created the now-annual NASCAR charity gala — Catwalk for a Cause — which was founded in 2010. She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer four years later. The latest edition of the gala was held just last week, and Pollex wasn’t able to attend.

A week later, she passed away in her sleep, according to her family. She was 44.

Cancer sucks.

Dramatic Bubba Wallace is back to being super dramatic

OK. Now, we can do our usual Monday Morning thing.

Bubba Wallace advanced to the second round of the playoffs thanks to a solid Bristol night, and — more importantly — he’s BACK to being a little too dramatic about it.

I defend Bubba a ton around here, but I also do it with the caveat that if he goes into his bag and pulls out the dramatic card, it’s open season.

And boy, did we get a CLASSIC one Saturday night:

Denny Hamlin hates your favorite NASCAR driver

I mean, come on! Why? Why!!!

Twelve drivers advanced to the next round of the playoffs Saturday night, and I only counted one who was collapsed by his car. Like, we get it — you advanced for the first time, Michael Jordan was on hand, you wanna do good for him, blah, blah, blah.

But not every single moment needs to be that dramatic. Sometimes, you can just say, “I did my job. Team did their job. We’re on to Texas.”

Bill Belichick’s been pretty successful at it, you know. (Except Sunday night. Go Dolphins. Pats STINK).

Oh well. Get that diamond, Bubba!

You know who else did his job Saturday night and then told all the fans to kiss his ass? Denny Hamlin — easily NASCAR’s most hated driver not named Bubba Wallace.

Chase Elliott’s behavior is apparently unacceptable

I’m so damn torn on Denny Hamlin. One week, I can’t stand him because he’s being a hypocritical little baby. The next, he’s giving the fans the finger.

It is amazing how much the NASCAR community has just turned on Denny Hamlin. So odd. I guess it really started back in 2017 when he punted Chase Elliott at Martinsville.

But it sort of took a detour last year because he was in this year-long feud with Ross Chastain, and most of the folks were actually on his side.

Didn’t last, though. He’s once again public enemy No. 1 — a title held by Kyle Busch for a decade. I think it’s now in more than capable hands with Denny Hamlin.

Now, it’ll never be held by Chase Elliott — at least in the fans’ eyes. But it appears ol’ Clyde went and pissed off the media when he got a little snippy with Kyle Larson last week.

Angry Ryan Blaney is back, NASCAR walk-up songs and Dale Jr. on fire

OK, Danielle. I do agree with Chase hating Kyle Larson. That was 100% spot on. But unacceptable? Really? Let’s relax just a hair. It’s not like he punted him into the wall and sent him to the ER. He nudged him.

It was stupid and Chase has clearly checked out this season, but I don’t know that he needs a stern talking to with the term “unacceptable” thrown around like he’s a 7-year-old talking to his disappointed parents.

And if that sounds like someone who’s been there before, you’re damn right. I got that talk plenty growing up. Hell, I still get it once in a while and I’m 30 now.

OK, let’s check in with Ryan Blaney!

Angry Ryan Blaney is BACK, baby! Get the hell out of the way, Bob! Hilarious. Rhino’s just NOT feeling it this year, is he? Between him and Chase, I don’t even know who’s angrier at this point.

Like we say with my 2-year-old when she’s in a pissy phase — she’s clearly just growing up and going through something right now. Let her learn.

That’s what we’re doing with Blaney and Elliott right now, just letting them experience life and grow up. It’s beautiful.

Can I interest anyone in a NASCAR walk-up song?

A lot to digest there.

Chase used to always walk out to Eric Church, and now he goes with … Bruno Mars? Like I said, he’s going through a phase right now, clearly.

Ryan Preece goes with Gangster’s Paradise, which is funny if you’ve seen Ryan Preece. Blaney and Bubba choose Tyler Childers, which was surely a crowd-pleaser. Couple odes to Jimmy Buffett in there, which was nice to see.

Watermelon Moonshine by Ross Chastain was funny. Also, only one Morgan Wallen song and NO Taylor Swift songs? That was shocking. Joey Logano’s Champ is here is funny now because the champ has now been eliminated from the playoffs.

OK, here’s Dale Jr. nearly being fried on our way out:

Welcome to the show, McCall Gaulding

God, Junior’s the best. Just the best.

Yeah, we got a hole in my pants.

He was awesome Saturday night, by the way. Hell, a late caution may have legitimately cost him the win, which is one hell of a sentence to type in 2023.

Finally, truck series driver Zane Smith signed a pretty big contract with Trackhouse Racing this weekend, which is a huge deal because it probably puts him in a Cup car sooner rather than later.

That’s all well and good, but we don’t really care about that around here. Instead, we focus on his fiancée, MMPS legend McCall Gaulding.

She’s now one step closer to the big leagues! That, boys and girls, is a GREAT way to start the week.

Off to Texas.

Written by Zach Dean

Zach grew up in Florida, lives in Florida, and will never leave Florida ... for obvious reasons. He's a reigning fantasy football league champion, knows everything there is to know about NASCAR, and once passed out (briefly!) during a lap around Daytona. He swears they were going 200 mph even though they clearly were not.

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