I’m Not Dumbfounded But Thankfully I’ve Never Been Interviewed By Jeff Ireland ……………..
Well the NFL Draft has come and gone and a great many fans out there are either satisfied or completely satisfied with the choices made by their team . Now if your a Miami Dolphins’ fan I’m not about to offer my condolences on the fact that you have a dip-shit as a GM in Jeff Ireland . What this guy brings to the table God only knows . But one way or another Team President Head Of Football Operations Bill Parcells may have seen something positive in this dick-wad ?
Slide-show for your perusal .
One can only surmise what chief general partner and principal owner Stephen M. Ross must now be thinking after inexcusable behavior of Ireland in his interview of rookie Dez Bryant out of Oklahoma State ? The player would end up being drafted by the Dallas Cowboys as the 24th pick overall in the first round of the NFL Draft . Front office asides is there now any common sense within the Dolphins’ organization ? Even with its smorgasbord of big named celebrities and sports stars amongst the owners of the team. The ominous stench now set forth by this shebang can only allude the fact that Ireland seems to have forgotten that Gloria and Emilio Estefan , as as well as Serena and Venus Williams are high profiled minorities who are well known within the community. And as minority stakeholders in the team they ought to be offered an apology for his utterly inappropriate remarks.
Courtesy of CBS News
Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland Sorry for Dez Bryant Mom-Hooker Question
By Sean Alfano of CBS News
Miami Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland is saying sorry to wide receiver Dez Bryant, but he might consider adding a thank you for not having his lights punched out last month.
During pre-draft interviews where, according to Yahoo Sports blogger Mike Silver, front-office talent mavens probe potential picks with sometimes mind-boggling questions, Ireland asked Bryant if his mother had ever been a prostitute.
Bryant, not shockingly, was offended by the comment and reportedly responded with a curt, “No.”
Realizing his faux pas (after the question became public, of course), Ireland issued this statement:
“My job is to find out as much information as possible about a player that I’m consider drafting. Sometimes that leads to asking in-depth questions.
“Having said that, I talked to Dez Bryant and told him I used poor judgment in one of the questions I asked him. I certainly meant no disrespect and apologized to him.
“I appreciate his acceptance of that apology and I told him I wished him well as he embarks on his NFL career.”
The Cowboys grabbed Bryant, a standout wide receiver at Oklahoma State, with the 24th overall pick last week. He missed most of his final season at Oklahoma State because he lied to the NCAA about a meeting he had with Deion Sanders.
Maybe Ireland thinks most liars are the spawn of prostitute moms.
According to Silver, some other questions posed to players include the kind of underwear they play in (G-string or jock strap), asking a Rhodes Scholar (Myron Rolle, Florida State) how he felt deserting his team for England and whether a white running back (Toby Gerhart, Stanford) felt “entitled” because of his race.
Is the famed Wunderlic test no longer the best interrogation tool?
In any case, Ireland may want to call in sick Sept. 2 and skip Miami’s preseason game at Dallas.
Ireland in an initial interview that took place at Land Shark/Sun Life Stadium , home to the team . The general manager asked the player a rather sensitive and impertinent question ! That question being ………….” is your mother a prostitute” ? What this question has to do with Bryant’s psyche or talents as a potential hiree of the team, has about as much relevance as the color of the sun might be to a blind man. But somehow this jackass thought it relevant ? What Bryant may well have thought about the question when it was first posed to him , we shall never know.
Ireland having offered a profound apology to the player, it would appear that he doesn’t believe it also involves offering one also the Dez Bryant’s mother. But somehow this will be all glossed over as nothing more than an impromptu and rather blase’ off the cuff remark ! Had this been an “African American NFL executive”asking this of a Caucasian prospect . One wonders what the firestorm created might be ? Never mind the fact that this could have been viewed as “Ireland being racially insensitive” apart from showing obviously poor judgment and utter stupidity on his part .
No public statement has been made by Parcells or anyone else within the Dolphins’ front office on the matter. And NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell , given his stance on how he views the image of the NFL . It appears somewhat absurd that he has said nothing at all on the matter. I guess he either suborns this sort of stupidity or when he’s ready he’ll take center stage and make a rather innocuous statement regarding the matter. Given his take and how less than forthright initially he had been concerning the “Ben Roethlisberger Affair” . One wonders whether or not Goodell actually gives a damn as how women are perceived by his members ?
And for the Dolphins coming off their rather disastrous 7-9 season within the AFC East in 2009. Failing to make the playoffs having won the division in 2008 , the team merely regressed rather than moving forward.
For coach Tony Sparano and his coaching staff , this upcoming season won’t just be about assessing the young rookie prospects brought in by the club but also about the pickups made via free agency and whether the departures from the club were the right decisions made by him and his staff.
Chad Henne is now entrusted as the “signal caller” for the team at the quarterback position . And with his namesake Chad Pennington once again having to overcome another injury. One had better hope that Henne is up to the challenge of leading this team . Oh by the way Sportschump , I think I ought to remind you that Henne’s thoughts on Tim Tebow , is that he’s not an NFL ready quarterback , much less ready to even wear a protective cup. I hope you don’t take that to heart but those words can be attributed to Henne ! The team also acquired restrictive free agent Brandon Marshall via trade from the Denver Broncos . As to whether not this receiving corps immediately becomes better remains to be seen.
If the club has an “Achilles’ heel” then it must be on the defensive side of things. They’ve been an inconsistent mess . And not even with former defensive end Jason Taylor no longer with the team, having signed with the New York Jets . The preseason and regular season will tell us a great deal about this team , the organization in general and the direction that it is going in. And while there’s no doubt that Bill Parcells’ imprints are all over the team in terms of the assembly of the roster. You get the impression that while Parcells now oversees the day to operations of the club. It is now being left to Jeff Ireland to deal with the personnel .and now to make the prudent decisions.
Do you get the impression that had Dez Bryant been chosen by the Dolphins , his mother might be in for a torrid time courtesy of Jeff Ireland ? As the saying goes ……..”once you’ve had black you never go back”. Thankfully, that won’t be the case for Dez Bryant but he’ll now have to deal with Jerry Jones ? I guess you can’t win ’em all !
What thoughts if any do you have with regard to the behavior shown by Dolphins’ GM Jeff Ireland and how do you see the team’s upcoming season progressing within the AFC East ? As and when ready I’ll look forward to reading your comments and responding accordingly. And once again thanks always for the continued support as it’s greatly appreciated !
NB Click here for information pertaining to the 2010 NFL Draft .
I’m Not About To Lie Down And Take One For The Team ………
Do you get the impression that in Southern Cal all is not right with the world ? The much storied athletics’ program of the USC Trojans is seemingly under siege not just from within but also from the outside. The findings of the NCAA’s Infraction Committee has yet to be made public. But there are ominous signs coming down from up above at the highest levels within the university. University President Steven B. Sample is stepping down from his position in his capacity as its President. And there are now “cries” for the current AD Mike Garrett to follow suit and simply step down.
Questions have been asked and raised about the University’s athletics program that have yet to be fully answered by either Garrett or Sample in any real capacity. And if anything the controversy that has continued to surround the school with regard to both its basketball and football programs has left something of a unsavory taste in everyone’s mouth not associated with the program and the school. What might even be more bewildering to some has been the snail’s pace in terms of the investigation undertaken by the NCAA into the allegations that’ve concerned both sports within the school’s Athletics Department. It does make you wonder who has been minding the store while much of this went on ? And certainly in the case of both men’s football coach Pete Carroll and Tim Floyd the Trojans’ former basketball coach, there are a great many questions that have gone unanswered. Carroll has since departed from USC to take up the head coach’s position of the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL . I guess “he” may have seen some of the ominous signs coming his way as the ” writing may well have been on the wall” ! And they talk about rats deserting a sinking ship ? The quickness of the departures of both “Carroll” and “Tim Floyd” only adds to the intrigue and the suspense. Never mind the aspects of ” …….. who knew what , where, when and why ? No one and I mean absolutely no one wants to talk about this “bitch” at all ! The silence is so deafening that you’d be under the impression that we were indeed investigating the murder of either Cripps or Blood gang member ?
Beleaguered former USC Trojans’ coach Tim Floyd takes questions from the convened press. There was a great deal of speculation involving Floyd’s association with known felon Rodney Guillory and a close personal friend and confidante of O J Mayo a former player on Floyd’s Trojans men’s basketball team.
One thing is becoming abundantly clear from this whole escapade and it is that USC is now covering its very own “ass” as it looks to stave off the wrath of the NCAA. Any punitive act on their (NCAA) part in terms of the suspensions of athletics’ scholarships , forfeiture of games and quite possibly of a the rescinding of whole competitive season and the results therein means absolutely nothing at the end of the day ! Especially when the program and the university have simply made tens of millions of dollars while the “alleged malfeasance” has gone on Simply put , the NCAA’s hierarchy are a bunch of oafs, if they think that the suspensions and forfeiture will have done enough to make USC learn its lesson. Hell , the boosters , alumni and no doubt senior members of the faculty are in fact laughing their asses off ! They might appear to be showing a great deal of concern but only insomuch as to how they will go about plotting their next ascent to the top of collegiate athletic. Do you get my point , you piss in the ocean and make a ripple but does it actually stir up the waves ? That’s about as much “damage” that will be done to the program when it’s all said and done !
Ever since the days of Reggie Bush’s ascent to stardom as a member of the Trojans’ football team , questions were being asked of the player and his close ties to an agent . Garrett for his part, acted none plus by this all, as if it were all news to him. But that has been the norm within the Trojans’ athletics’ program for years, that has been left unchecked by an administration that simply hasn’t cared , just as long as the “tangible success attained” remained consistent and was prolonged ! And would it have really made any difference to know that then men’s head basketball coach Tim Floyd knowingly gave $1,000-00 to an intermediary by the name of Rodney Guilllory, who was an associate and confidante’ of O J Mayo, the “the highly sought after prized recruit” on the Trojans men’s basketball team. One and done , Mayo was soon off to the NBA to make “his” fame and fortune . Can I get an amen, here ? I mean where else can you make a complete mockery of a system that is so corrupt that it is beyond belief. But yet we’re being told by all sides that what is now in place is of benefit to the student athlete .
I can only surmise that the likes of David Stern , Roger Goodell , Bud Selig and Gary Bettman are happy with their lot ! Never mind the joy that is being felt by NCAA President James Isch , colleges and the major athletics conferences across the nation are of a similar like mindedness when it comes to collegiate feeder system to professionalism that’s in place. The NCAA makes its money , the conferences , universities , coaches, athletic directors and agents make theirs . At the end of it all more often than not the student athlete hasn’t even got a pot to piss in and a window to throw it out of . What is wrong with this picture I ask ?
And while we wait for the findings of the NCAA and the punishment to be levied, if any against the University of Southern California (USC) . Ask yourself this, whose best interests is now being served by this all ? Is it the USC (Trojans) ? Or is it the NCAA or quite possibly the professional governing bodies of MLB , NFL , NBA and the NHL ? If you believe you do indeed have the answer then by all means leave a comment as to the reasons why. I’ll look forward to reading them each and responding in due course. As always, thanks for the continued support , it is greatly appreciated as usual ! >
Bob Marley ……… “Don’t Worry Three Little Birds”
Actress Jessica Biel . Who wouldn’t want grab a hold of her “melons ? I know that I certainly would !
Meet Some of My Newest Friends From ’round The Way …………….
Well guys now that the Duke Blue Devils have done their thing in winning a fourth national men’s NCAA title in defeating Butler – 61-59 . We can applaud them and coach Mike Krzyzewski on a job well done ! Now let’s get down to brass tacks ? Here are just a few of my latest friends courtesy of a certain renowned men’s magazine commonly subscribed to by many African American males . King Magazine is the publication in question and its content of luscious females goes unmatched even surpassing I’d say, the “swimsuit issue” of Sports Illustrated to my mind ! So without further ado enjoy the content matter . And by all means do chime in with a comment as each and every one is more than welcomed !
Given Ben Roethlisberger’s sexual proclivities, his weaknesses for young females younger than himself and his seemingly sobriety problem as it relates to alcohol. Is it any wonder that he puts himself repeatedly in such awkward situations ?
“Bro’ I’m tellin’ you , she wants to give me some head ! ”
It now appears that the Baldwin County District Attorney Fred Bright is now contemplating whether or not a case can be made for prosecuting the player over the ‘alleged sexual assault’ of a college student in the town of Milledgeville , Georgia. Both the Milledgeville Police Department and the Georgia Bureau of Investigations (GBI) have submitted their joint findings of their investigation into the incident and have placed that evidence in the hands of the district attorney . That evidence will be placed in front of a grand jury whereby a decision will be made as to whether or not to proceed ahead with a criminal trial against Roethlisberger. So much for those who felt that there wasn’t still a case to be made against the player. And I do understand the need for caution in such a delicate case as the character and the integrity of the people involved does come into play. Given the fact however, that the player has behaved irrationally and irresponsibly in the past , it does give credence that he has a problem that even he appears unwilling to acknowledge or address accordingly !
MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. — Authorities investigating a sexual assault charge lodged against Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said Thursday that they have made progress and could submit their findings to the district attorney “before too much longer,” but they emphasized there is no timeline for the investigation.
John Bankhead, spokesman for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation in Atlanta, cautioned that such a development would be unlikely to be made public and that it would not necessarily mean the end of the investigation.
Mr. Bankhead said it would be up to Fred Bright, district attorney for the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit, to determine whether the case should proceed to a grand jury, and it is possible that Mr. Bright would request that elements of the investigation be revisited or extended.
That could include additional interviews with witnesses, Mr. Bankhead said.
Mr. Bright declined to comment Thursday beyond reiterating an earlier statement saying, “The investigation is ongoing. It would be premature to make any announcement at this time.”
A 20-year-old student at Georgia College & State University told police that Mr. Roethlisberger assaulted her March 5 in a Milledgeville night club. Mr. Roethlisberger, who was questioned by police that night, has denied the accusation through his Atlanta-based attorneys.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation, which was brought in at the outset to assist on the case at the request of the Milledgeville Police Department, has designated several agents to the case. They and the Milledgeville police have spent the past month interviewing witnesses and collecting evidence.
Mr. Bankhead disagreed with suggestions that the probe was taking more time than expected. On the contrary, he said, it’s moving along fairly smoothly toward its conclusion, on a pace similar to that of other cases the department handles.
“People who say this case is dragging along don’t understand our procedures,” Mr. Bankhead said. “… there are all kinds of things we have to take into account, such as the availability of witnesses.”
Asked whether investigators have encountered any difficulties in their probe, Mr. Bankhead replied, “No, other than with the media.
“There are a lot of people out there reporting things and repeating things that just are not true. They’ll be eating crow later. It may taste delicious like Thanksgiving turkey now, but later on, when the facts come out, it’ll taste like eating crow.”
Milledgeville police Chief Woodrow W. Blue Jr. agreed with that assessment. “We’re closer today than we were yesterday,” he said. “I’m not comfortable putting a time frame on it. The way we do things in Georgia, I don’t want to say two more weeks or three more weeks. It will be over when it’s over.”
Obviously this will all continue to play out in the ‘court of public opinion as is a right in such circumstances. But at the same time, we can’t overlook the actions of the player and nor we can we neglect the ‘rule of law’ . But until we have a final ruling from the DA’s office this will all continue to be a matter of conjecture and speculation. And for Roethlisberger and his attorney Ed Garland . Well , right about now they must be trying to tread on egg shells ever so lightly.
So take time to look at the captioned picture of Roethlisberger his friend and the female within their midst. Affix your own caption to the piece leaving what you believe would be an appropriate comment from either of the three people pictured herein. Have fun and once again thanks for the continued support ! As always it is appreciated and welcomed .
The Sporting Weekend That Was ……… Misfires And Positives ………..
Well the MLB season has kicked off in full swing and oh yes , the baseball fans are simply now in heaven . Two things have caught my eye , the Yankees and Red Sox rivalry will be ‘as heated as ever’. And low and behold ESPN has made the announcement that former Arizona Diamondbacks and Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling will be joining their staff as an on air analyst for their pre-game and radio shows covering baseball. Now don’t get me wrong if ESPN feels that someone as opinionated as Schilling, is what they need to lure even more fans to watch their coverage . Then , so be it ! Schilling will also be providing live analysis , giving his undoubted experience and some might say in depth analysis of the game. I’m wondering if Curt will try to pass himself off as baseball’s answer to Charles Barkley ?
Bristol , Conn. (AP)—Curt Schilling has been hired by ESPN to work as a baseball analyst.
The network says that the former pitcher, who won World Series titles with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Boston Red Sox, will appear on “Baseball Tonight” and ESPN Radio, in addition to contributing to ESPNBoston.com and the company’s main Web site.
He will make his debut Sunday during ESPN’s pregame coverage of the big league opener between the Red Sox and the New York Yankees.
For the Eagles , their coach Andy Reid , GM & President Joe Banner this now becomes about the immediate future and the handing over of the reins to Kevin Kolb . And given the fact that the Eagles’ fans have never truly accepted McNabb and embraced him openly. I’m now wondering what they’ll make of the fact that the player has been traded to a divisional rival ? Will there be effigies of both Banner and Reid hanging outside the stadium should the team not fare well at all during the upcoming season ? Now call me naive but would it not have been far more advantageous for the organization to trade the player to another team outside the division (NFC East) ?
Mike Shanahan and team owner Daniel Snyder , they may well view this as their coup-de-gras in obtaining the Pro Bowl quarterback. And for Jason Campbell , he now must be left wondering as to what his immediate future may well be within the organization. My own opinion is that he’s no more or less , your rather average backup quarterback ! He simply can’t be entrusted to lead the Redskins with any great aplomb. Granted , he’s had to deal with the revolving door of coaches and offensive coordinators from his very first day with the team until now. And no player mentally or physically should really have to deal with such a situation. But this is simply what makes the Redskins one the NFL’s more comical organizations in terms of their managerial and executive structure .
The only reservation in Donovan McNabb’s voice Sunday night was over finding and talking to Jason Campbell. After all, when things were going rotten for Campbell, when he was being benched and booed, it was McNabb, after an Eagles-Redskins game in Washington, who sought out Campbell to buck him up, tell him he’s got the tools to be a fine quarterback in the NFL. The quarterback fraternity is small, and the black quarterback fraternity is even smaller, and McNabb didn’t want Campbell to think for one second he’d been lying in the weeds for weeks, waiting to take his job.
McNabb, for the record, didn’t know until the last second where he was going to wind up. The rumors that the Vikings were atop his list were erroneous; McNabb told me that himself last week. The Raiders were a team that was interested, but not the only team. McNabb and I talked about the business of football the other night in Arizona, a totally off-the-record conversation. But I was reminded that night, with all due respect to Campbell, why McNabb is about the best fit around to be the quarterback of the Washington Redskins . . .
…Because Donovan McNabb has done most of it and seen all of it. Even on an evening when the Eagles, the only team he has played for, were trying to trade him, he was completely unfazed. We’re talking about an 11-year veteran who was booed by Eagles fans from the moment he was selected. He’s dealt with injury, the harshest criticism imaginable, idiot teammates such as Terrell Owens, roiled up locker rooms. He’s watched his team draft his replacement, taken the field with few if any Pro Bowl-caliber weapons. He’s shrugged off controversies involving race that were none of his doing. Yet, McNabb has always been able to speak his mind, keep his dignity and keep his team in Super Bowl contention.
Click on link to read Michael Wilbon’s article in its entirety.
I’m not really hyped about women’s sports but I’ve caught a glimpse of one or two of the games in the women’s NCAA basketball tournament. And it’s now becoming clear that it’ll take a cataclysmic event to derail the U Conn Huskies as they “seek perfection” to end their season. All that now stands in the way of Geno Auriemma’s team are the women of Stanford . And as good as the Lady Cardinals appear to be , I do believe that they face an uphill task in trying to derail this Huskies’ team. Head coach Tara VanDerveer must either pray for divine intervention or that her team can catch lightning in a bottle and pull off the biggest upset ever to have taken place in women’s collegiate athletics. That’s the size of the task now facing the overwhelming underdogs in this contest , as they battle for the national championship.
Another week and “another dumb ass move” by an athlete ! It must be me but NFL players either believe that they’re impervious , invincible and above the law. Let me pose this question to you ? Knowing what you know, concerning the security measures carried out by the TSA (Transport & Security Administration) at all domestic airports , why in hell’s name would you want to carry a concealed weapon in your carry on luggage and then to board a domestic flight ? Cleveland Browns’ nose tackle Shaun Rogers pled not guilty to such a charge when he attempted to board a flight at Cleveland’s Hopkins International Airport , Cleveland ,Ohio. Rogers through his attorney Patrick D’Angelo pleaded not guilty to the charge but has already offered an apology to the fans and to the Browns’ organization . If found guilty he faces up to eighteen months in prison and a fine . The case should it go to trial would take place within the Cleveland Municipal Court and it is bound to not only to just add one more “black eye” to the image of the NFL but also to the entire Browns’ organization.
Cleveland (AP)—Cleveland Browns nose tackle Shaun Rogers(notes) has pleaded not guilty to a concealed weapons charge after authorities say he tried to carry a loaded handgun through airport security in a carry-on bag.
Rogers’ attorney Patrick D’Angelo says his client entered the plea Saturday in Cleveland Municipal Court. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in prison.
The 31-year-old apologized to his fans and his team Friday after spending a night in jail, saying he didn’t mean to take the gun into Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. Rogers told police he forgot the gun was in his bag when he attempted to fly to Texas on Thursday.
D’Angelo says Rogers planned to fly to Houston later Saturday to spend Easter with family and will make sure “to check everything.”
One clearly now must wonder what President & Head of Football Operations Mike Holmgren must be thinking about the mess that he finds himself in , as to the ongoing problems of this team both on and off the field of play ? Never mind the fact that he also has to deal with an under achieving coach in Eric Mangini and his coaching staff . The task now facing Holmgren in turning this organization around is a daunting one . But when he has players who use poor judgment not only on the field but also off it. It kinds make you feel that they’re completely deserving of anything that’s thrown their way , and that it is of their own making. Rogers may well try and deny his culpability , in his poor lack of judgment in traveling with a concealed weapon. But given the fact he was about to board a domestic flight and whereby passengers are routinely checked. You have to simply wonder what mindset he had at the time ? It is bad enough that he plays on a woefully inept team but his decision making off the field, in some ways indicates many of the woes that the Browns now faces as an organization in terms of its on field personnel. Common sense doesn’t appear to be part of the equation there at all ! Well at least when it comes to the Cleveland Browns . Their fans might as well accept the fate that is now within their midst. Because in reality over the last decade , what we’ve seen from the Browns is a lesson in abject futility both on and off the field ! Shaun Rogers’ actions only further endorse and enhance the fact as to how bad things are there with the NFL franchise .
And it has been suggested that the addition of Jake Delhomme to the team will add some much needed resolve for the organization and make them a legitimate contender within the NFC North ? I’d somehow like to think so but being on the outside looking and seeing how the Browns fared last year. Any advances made to my mind will only be incremental . After-all we are talking about a team that could only muster 5 wins all of last season in going 5-11 within its ‘own division. A far cry from the expectations of the Browns’ fans and ownership .
Butler head coach Brad Stevens , left to right, Gordon Hayward and Ronald Nored smile during an interview session for the men’s NCAA Final Four college basketball championship Sunday, April 4, 2010, in Indianapolis. The Butler Bulldogs will “face” Mike Krzyzewski’s Duke Blue Devils in the championship game Monday night to be played at Lucas Oil Stadium , Indianapolis, Indiana. This in many ways will be very much a “home game” for the small and in-obtrusive college team from Indiana. The furor over over their improbable journey has resonated within the state and across the nation. photo appears courtesy of Associated Press/ Mark J Terrill ……………
Now as we all know the Butler Bulldogs have made it to the men’s national championship game in the NCAA Basketball Tournament . In tonight’s final, they’ll be taking on the ‘prohibitive favorites and three time national champions in the Duke Blue Devils . The thing I’d like to know is the fresh faced looking Brad Stevens , coach of this Butler team . Is he actually old enough to drink or vote ? He’s the only guy that I’ve seen during this tournament who actually looks younger than several of the players he’s coaching and many of the other collegiate players that have participated in the tournament for their respective teams. All kidding asides , even the team’s best player Gordon Hayward actually looks older than his coach . But that simply won’t mean anything once the two teams set foot on the court for the tip-off at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The “storied Duke program” will be taking on the unexpected finalists in a game of contrasting styles but nonetheless a game that will invoke and elicit a great deal thought and fan support across the country. No doubt a great many fans will be looking to cheer on the “hometown heroes” of Butler. While opposing fans will be looking to see if Duke’s coach, Mike Krzyzewski can add to “his already illustrious” career by winning his “fourth national title” as coach of the Blue Devils. This will be the main plot-line of what will be an epic match-up of “David versus Goliath” on what is college basketball’s grandest stage. Tonight we shall see if Butler in its role as David can take down the mighty Goliath , in form of Duke, in front of a national tv audience of millions , as well as the thousands who’ll be in attendance to cheer on the “local hometown heroes” . And hopefully this will be a game that lives up to all of the perceived hype and expectations.
Well those have been my takes on this sporting weekend. I’m still on “cloud nine” having seen my beloved San Antonio Spurs lay the ‘wood’ to the Los Angeles Lakers in their lopsided victory 100-81 . And with Manu Ginobli essentially, outplaying even Kobe Byrant on the day, with a thoroughly engaging display of offensive prowess in scoring 32 points ,in leading the team to victory at the Staples Center , in Los Angeles, California. Needless to say, there’ll be those who will say that one shouldn’t put much store in “the result”. But I look at this way, a team wants consistency and rhythm as the NBA postseason beckons. ‘No teams’ wants to go limping in the opening rounds of the playoffs where the ‘slightest mistake’ can put ‘an end to your season’ before it’s even started . Hopefully , this will be a sign of things to come from the Spurs after this rather engaging display. It should serve as a warning that they’re not dead and buried as of yet ? Writing them off as of now and you’ll be doing so at your peril !
What sporting events that took place this weekend have you thinking “hits and misses” ? By all means chime on in with a comment. And I’ll look to responding to them each ,in the usual manner. As always thanks for the continued support , it is definitely appreciated !
One of the reasons why I state the team isn’t as good as last year’s victorious roster. Well the addition of Ron Artest to my mind has led to subtraction by addition ! There isn’t as much cohesiveness about the unit as last year’s ensemble. The loss of Trevor Ariza is far more than anyone within the Lakers’ front office , coaching staff or players would care to admit. They in essence sold their ‘soul to the Devil’ in obtaining Artest. And in return, there’s been little to show tangibly from the player in terms of his efforts. OK, so some will say that it takes time to acclimatize to new surroundings and a new cast of teammates. But given the fact that Artest is a seasoned veteran, rather than a rookie. What we’re now seeing from the player is a great deal of inconsistency and the mere fact that he’s become more of a liability to the team, rather than the asset that they’d hoped for. Ariza who signed with Artest’s former team the Houston Rocket , is having a rather solid season playing alongside Luis Scola , Aaron Brooks and a solid core of players that make up this Rocket’s team . And at the same time this Rick Adelman coached roster has played themselves into contention for a playoff berth .
Now there’s a great reason to show some cause for concern if you’re undoubted Lakers’ fan. Guard Kobe Bryant is playing injured (broken index finger-on his right hand and dislocated finger on the right) and once again it looks like the team’s center Andrew Bynum just can’t seem to stay fit long enough, to contribute with any great consistency to the team. And though they lead the conference and their division by a fairly wide margin. You get the feeling that another serious injury to any of the other front line players on the roster and the Lakers’ season could completely spiral out of control. The team’s bench has become their Achilles’ heel and anyone who believes that they have “the best bench” in the entire NBA is in need of treatment from Dr Drew Pinsky . Rehab anyone ?
El Segundo , California (AP)—Kobe Bryant(notes) is staying with the Los Angeles Lakers for another three years.
The deal announced Friday will begin after next season. Bryant is making $23 million this season and is due to earn $24.8 million next season.
“It’s very rare to have a player play his entire career in one city, so I’m very excited,” he said after the Lakers beat Utah 106-92.
Bryant would earn $27.4 million in 2011-12, $30.2 million the following season and more than $32 million in his final year, when he would be 35.
“Good news,” coach Phil Jackson said. “I expected that Kobe would sign. It’s a good choice for him and the organization.”
The deal means the Lakers achieved two main objectives going into the season — signing Bryant and Pau Gasol(notes) to extensions.
“We were able to accomplish those goals, helping to keep the core of this team intact for the foreseeable future and in turn help to ensure the franchise’s continued success over the years to come,” General manager Mitch Kupchak said Friday on the team’s Web site.
Gasol signed earlier in the season.
The 31-year Bryant could have terminated the last two years of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent last July. He could have secured a new, longer deal if he had opted out, but he wouldn’t have necessarily made more money.
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Now we can all attest to the fact this Lakers’ team has been the best within their conference by a convincingly wide margin. But at the same time as with any team they will have their struggles when faced with a certain amount of adversity. And that is to be expected because that is what delineates and separates the good teams from the bad. The bad teams don’t know how to adapt and overcome adversity. The good teams always tend to find a way and that all comes down the experience of the players and that of the coaching staff in place. And in Phil Jackson and his staff where’s ably abetted by Frank Hamblen , Brian Shaw and Jim Cleamons as his chief subordinates. Jackson could not have found anyone better to have assisted him in the task. The game of basketball isn’t merely about what goes on , on the court but it’s also about what the coaches instill into the heads of the players in terms of their competitiveness and playing abilities. This is where the advantage lies with the Lakers ahead of the rest of NBA. Phil Jackson is as astute a coach as there is , involved in any team sport. He ranks up there alongside the likes of Lombardi , Auerbach , Bowman and John Wooden . But today where one’s every move is judged and singled out by every tv analyst , pundit , columnist and fan out there. There’s got to be a time where the coach himself has to be wondering whether or not it’s all worth it. And for Jackson , that answer is probably yes. He’s the flag bearer by which every NBA coach is now judged whether they like it or not. Jackson’s success proves that point .
As it now stands I do expect the Lakers to make it to the Western Conference Finals. But in all honesty their recent form (5-5) has me rethinking whether not they’ll be the conference representatives in the upcoming NBA Finals. This is much is true , without a completely healthy Bynum and Bryant this team’s chances of repeating as NBA champions is greatly diminished. And without Bryant as its figure head and vocal leader on and off the court they become nothing more than an average team, at best ! And average teams simply no longer win NBA championships in this day and age. If that were the case then it’d show mediocre the brand and product had become in the NBA. And that’s not something that either David Stern or the NBA hierarchy would like to see at this particular moment in time. Especially not with several teams around the league struggling financially , simply to stay afloat.
When the Lakers or Boston Celtics are riding high then it makes for a better NBA brand and product out there for the consumer to part-take of and enjoy. And though we’ve seen the rise of the LeBron James’ led Cleveland Cavaliers . Until James and his teammates are winning championships on a regular basise or are perennial contenders. Then he’ll just be seen as another ‘prodigy’ and not much else. I think that’s pretty fair to say about LeBron at this juncture don’t you think ?
Alan Parkins aka tophatal
Simply Red feat’g on lead vocals Mick Hucknall …….. ‘Holding Back The Years’
Reasons why Phil Jackson is thankful . He gets to ‘nail’
the boss’ daughter Jeanie Buss .