Thursday, July 20, 2017

We're Talking About Summer League?

The Los Angeles Lakers won this off-season's Summer League. Congrats to them, but to steal a sentiment from Allen Iverson: what are we talking about? We're talking about Summer League. Not a real a game, barely even a practice. We're talking about Summer League. Most of the players that are playing in this league are rookies, who have been recently drafted, or players trying to hold on to a miracle of making a G-League (formerly the D-League) team. Lonzo Ball won the MVP of the league even though he played about 4 games. Lonzo stole the headlines of the league with his triple doubles and his sneaker choice, but at times he looked unathletic and slow, he did make crisp passes and looked pretty good overall.

Maybe it's because the sports landscape kind of dries up during the summer when the sexy sports like the NBA and NFL are not in season and college sports are still a few weeks away that these minor league games take such prominence. The Summer League has never been taken seriously, but here are media gasbags making a mountain out of what has always been a molehill. Good for Ball for looking good. Good for the Lakers to have won a championship, something they won't see in the true Association for at least five years when they hopefully win the LeBron lotto and pair him with a more seasoned Ball and the core of young players the Lakers have. Now that the Summer League is over it's time to turn the public's eye to the NFL teams and who they were about to tag instead of signing long term deals.

Monday, July 17, 2017

The Deadline Draws Near

With the second Wild Card still a thing; and MLB still hasn't listened to me about moving the deadline back so that teams on the fence can figure out the right time to make the necessary decisions to either buy or trade teams have started to make some moves. The Cubs traded a huge haul to the White Sox for their ace Jose Quintana even with his 4+ era and the Nationals traded away 3 pitchers to the Athletics for relief help that they needed so desperately. From now til August 31st teams will either push all their chips to the center of the table (the Cubs) so they can continue their push for another World Series or try to accumulate as many pieces for a brighter future (the White Sox). More teams are on the hording pieces side of the equation where several teams can open up their roster and make anyone available in the hopes of becoming the next Cubs or Astros who have a young controllable team.

The Red Sox have a very strong team, but their deficiencies at third base is glaring. The trade of Travis Shaw is not looking good for the Sox who are looking to trade for a third baseman after the failed experiment of Pablo Sandoval who the Sox signed for a huge amount of money (5 years 95 million dollars) while Shaw has been thriving for the Milwaukee Brewers. Rumor has it Todd Frazier is on the Sox's radar and he seems to fit somewhat the needs of the Sox so that could be a chip that falls soon. Some would say the deadline sits in the lap of the White Sox who have several players who they can trade away beginning with Frazier, but also their closer David Robinson might be moved too, along with them is Melky Cabrera who is having a solid year for the White Sox who could be a pretty good 4th outfielder for a contender, he can be had too. So be prepared for the flurry of moves that will envelope the next few weeks.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

How Unbalanced is the NBA?

With the way the NBA is going the Eastern Conference is going to end up with only 4 teams that are competitive and only a handful of stars which will make the All Star game uninteresting. With the likes of Jimmy Butler and Paul George now with the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Oklahoma City Thunder, respectively, the Eastern Conference has lost two top 10 players and has taken a main piece from two teams in the East that were on the fringe of being competitive and also has effectively taken both the Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers out of the picture for playoff contention. Sure, neither the Bulls or Pacers have made any serious noise even when they have made the playoffs, but at least the Bulls pushed the Celtics, until Rondo's injury. The Pacers were looked at maybe a team that could compete if only they had another piece or two or three.

Now it's looking like it's LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, and that's pretty much it for the East. The Wizards have John Wall, but Wall hasn't exactly been a top 5 star. The Celtics have Isaiah Thomas and he has star potential, but his defensive inefficiencies will be the biggest knock against him even though he has twice the heart of most players in the association. Wall and Thomas are good players on contenders (even though any team in the East can be considered a contender) but there is a real lack of star power in the East and the commissioner should be concerned, but there is little he can do to adjust where free agents sign. Even though Gordon Hayward is now going from Utah to Boston the power scale will still be severely tilted in favor of the West. If you thought last season was boring brace yourself for an even more boring regular season and playoffs for that matter.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Why he won't Get Fired..

A lot of Met fans have issues with the manager of their team, Terry Collins. He tends to overwork some relievers and sometimes doesn't know when is the right time to remove a starting pitcher and generally seems like he doesn't exactly know what he's doing at times. This is frustrating for fans of a team who were expecting to be competitive in the National League. Hell some might've chosen the Mets to represent the NL in the World Series especially after they brought back their slugger Yoenis Cespedes and with Jay Bruce having 19 home runs before the All Star break runs are still hard to come by for the Mets because they rely so much on the home run that their offense remains inefficient.


And even with the talent the Mets have on their roster or on the disabled list in my opinion their season is flushed down the toilet and yes I know it's still only June. Here is why their manager won't be fired. The team has been riddled with injuries. From their ace down to their second baseman, most of the players the Mets would rely on to reach said World Series have spent time on the disabled list. This is the perfect shield for Collins. He will hide behind the injuries and will stay employed as the Mets manager for the rest of this season even though he's been frustrating to watch. I wouldn't be surprised if Collins came back next year and the mistakes he makes with this roster will continue to frustrate the fans and jeopardize the Mets' chance at getting that World Series the fans want so much.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Moving Pieces

This is going to be an interesting offseason in the NBA.  If your favoie team isn't ready to compete on a level with the Warriors out West or the Cavs in the East you're favorite team will either be feasted on by powerful teams or you destined to be mediocre. The rumor mill in the NBA is only getting started. Once the draft is over the rumors are really going to get going. The three biggest storylines going so far are where is Indiana going to trade Paul George to, where is Blake Griffin going to sign, and where is Gordon Heyward going to sign. The Cavs are looking to get better and there are already rumors of them talking to multiple teams to trade for Bulls star Jimmy Butler and also had the Pacers reach out to them for a potential George move.

Teams are trying to follow the foot steps of the Warriors and are adding firepower in the hopes of getting to where the champs are. Teams like the Bulls who aren't either good enough to beat the Cavs or bad enough to get a top 10 pick in the lottery are in murky standing. So now the Bulls are getting pecked at by teams like the Cavs and while holding a player like Butler there will always be a potential "super" team laying in the grass. Toronto is under the same umbrella with rumors flying that their star player Kyle Lowry may be reluctant to resign even with his outright denial on twitter; things are always shady during these times in the NBA offseason.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Where's the Parity?

The Cavs are playing the Warriors in the NBA Finals for the third straight time and I've heard gas bags on TV saying that whichever team is to win the Finals they're officially up there as one of the greatest teams of all time. Both the teams playing in these Finals are good, but they both have vulnerabilities. The Cavs play the worse defense from a team that I've seen in the Finals in a long time and the Warriors brought in another all star and have become an unstoppable machine to get here. As much as the Celtics and Lakers had teams that were stacked with all stars, the parity in the league was so much better than what the NBA has at this point. The weakness in the East along with the monster squad coming out of the Golden State there is a good chance these two teams will face each other a few more times in the Finals.

To build a contender in these times in the Association requires at least three all stars. The Boston Celtics started this by bringing in Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen into the fold and along side Paul Pierce they were able to drag themselves to one title. LeBron James then took the same angel and took his talents to South Beach and alongside his buddies Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade they promised not 1, not 2, not 3... and so on and so forth and even though they only brought 2 titles to southbeach they let Kevin Durant know that to fortify his legacy he would need a ring or 2 so he took his talent to an already built juggernaut and have become the knife that is going to through the rest of the league as if they're butter. Now the attention turns to any and all all star who is close to becoming a free agent to jump ship to another team with a friend and build a "Big 3" or in Golden State's case "Big 4". Chris Paul and Paul George will be on the clock once the Finals are over.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Finally Something Exciting Happens

These NBA playoffs have been boring. Blow out after blow out. Bad team after bad team. The Cavaliers had a 20 plus point lead when LeBron James finally showed he's capable of being human and actually have a bad game. The 11 points he scored against the Celtics in game 3 lead the Cavaliers to the snapping of their perfect record in these playoffs. Now only one team stands undefeated in the playoffs and that's the Golden State Warriors, who unlike the Cavaliers, have many more options on offense than the Cavaliers do. Kevin Love actually showed a pulse in this game and yet they still lost. Kyrie Irving where has he been? politely waiting for James to carry him to another title? I'm not trying to take anything away from Irving. He's a talented young player with the potential to carry a team, but 29 points 2 rebounds and 7 assists in 40 minutes in a game where LeBron didn't have it isn't going isn't going to cut it.

The Cavaliers are going to make the NBA Finals. They're going to go up against the Warriors, but without a competent Irving and Love the chase for back to back titles is going to be futile for LeBron and the Land. The Cavs are better than the Celtics, and better than the Wizards, and better than any other team out of the East, but the Warriors are really good and their role players would be able to compete against some of the lower level teams out of the East. Without Irving the Cavs don't stand a chance. LeBron deserves blame for losing game 3, but let's not forget Irving's 29 and Love's 28 points (6 of which came in the second half) won't cut it especially when the Warriors look as good as they do. It took a lucky bounce from a kid named Smart to finally bring some excitement to these proceedings.