Pride comes in various forms and it comes before a very great fall ….

Pride comes in various forms and it comes before a very great fall ….

So over the weekend , Pedro , a very good friend of mine , asked me to be the godfather to his two-year old son , Pedro Jesus Jr . Now, this will be something, that I will take a great deal of pride , in becoming this child’s godparent . Not being a parent myself , albeit, that I lived vicariously through the birth and growth of several nieces and nephews, my greatest joy has been to see the all of these children grow up to be productive citizens . My greatest hope , will be witness the same for my godchild’s future and if along the way, I can impart any wisdom upon him , to make him a better person , then it will be something that I will take a great deal of pride , alongside that of his proud parents .


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Slideshow .

Speaking of pride, the sporting weekend did not turn out at all well for two of the teams I support. In the NFL , the formerly unbeaten New England Patriots fell to the vastly improved Cincinnati Bengals , led by quarterback Andy Dalton . Inexplicably , the Patriots’ offense could only muster six points , to show for four quarters of a mediocre Sunday afternoon display , for which neither Tom Brady or head coach Bill Belichick could come up with what one would deem to be an acceptable explanation to explain the team’s first loss of the season . To only saving grace from the defeat , was that the Patriots’ closest rival within the AFC East , the Miami Dolphins also suffered a loss at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens in another AFC match-up.

The Patriots will now have to prepare themselves for what is likely to be a ferocious onslaught in week six , when Drew Brees and the unbeaten New Orleans Saints come calling at Gillette Stadium , in Foxborough, Massachusetts , this upcoming Sunday. A second successive defeat and there are likely to be questions asked of this Patriots’ team , specifically why they have become so anemic and sedentary ?

Two of the more enticing games that took place on Sunday afternoon , pitted the Denver Broncos , as the guests of the Dallas Cowboys and the Seattle Seahawks , in their visit to the Indianapolis Colts . In light of Roger Staubach’s ludicrous statement that Tony Romo was a championship caliber quarterback , capable of leading the Cowboys to the Superbowl , has me wondering what type of psychotropic medication the Hall of Fame great is currently using to make him more lucid, or less as the case might be . As exhilarating a contest this game said to be between the Broncos and Cowboys, it became abundantly clear that this match-up would become a test of attrition and will , between the two opposing quarterbacks . Tony Romo can be best described as a great regular season quarterback , but it is becoming abundantly clear that the player lacks leadership skills and appears to be someone who simply does not know how to handle real adversity , all that well. . The Cowboys came away with a narrow three-point loss in a 51-48 defeat at home from Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas . Romo, may well have had a career day , with over 500 yards in passing , along with five passing touchdowns , but the loss now pushes this Jason Garrett coached team to a 2-3 record within the NFC East with the division itself in some dire need of real competitive play from all four of the occupants there .

Seattle’s contest with the Colts proved to be a match-up of two of the best quarterbacks from the crop of last season’s players taken in the 2012 NFL Draft . Andrew Luck , leading a relatively young roster , more than held their own against Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks , in what I believed to be the best game of the entire weekend ! Luck in his brief NFL career , has now led the Colts to nine come from behind wins during his tenure , and it now looks as if the player has more than won over franchise’s faithful , who may well have had doubts that he was the rightful heir apparent to his predecessor , Peyton Manning , who this season has been rewriting the record books .

Your record simply reflects what you are in the NFL and if you are 0-5 , then that suggests that apart from being win-less , you are amongst the worst teams in the NFL . It is pretty much safe to say , that for both the Jacksonville Jaguars (0-5) and New York Giants (0-5) , their respective seasons are all but over . The Jaguars are playing in front of meager crowds at Ever Bank Stadium , while the Giants are simply hanging on for dear life , while seeking to further embarrass their two-time Superbowl head coach Tom Coughlin . Once, a stern disciplinarian, Coughlin still holds his players accountable for their actions . Yet, at present, it looks as if that the team is now lacking, not only leadership, but a great deal of confidence , as well as a lack of pride .

Well , as baseball’s postseason gets into full swing , several series within the wildcard rounds brought us little suspense , but now as the divisional series are in full swing . We are finally beginning to see the cream rise to the top , while the lesser lights have suddenly fallen flat and at the bottom of the cup . The Tampa Bay Rays are coming apart at the seams and it appears that Joe Maddon can no longer convince the fans are public alike that the franchise’s season was nothing more than aberration .

In the best of a five-game series, the Rays now find themselves down, 0-2 against a Boston Red Sox team, managed by John Farrell , that seems intent on winning their third World Series title in the past six seasons . I am not about to suggest that Tampa Bay has made it easy for the Red Sox to progress towards another AL pennant berth , but anyone who witnessed Saturday’s 7-4 loss and then its precursor of a horrendous 12-2 shellacking , will know that apart from the anemic offense shown , with the team’s defense has bordered on being downright insulting and even an affront to even the kids who play Little League Baseball .

Game four of this series will resume on Tuesday evening when the Tampa Bay will host the Boston Red Sox in a ” must-win game” , if they are to prolong their season . A loss and Tampa’s season will come to an abrupt end before it has even started .

While the Los Angeles Dodgers and Atlanta Braves won their divisions with considerable ease . It was felt that their NL divisional series would be considerably more competitive . With their first two games squared at one game apiece (1-1), Los Angeles then took a decisive role in annihilating the Atlanta 13-6 to take a 2-1 lead in the best of five game series . Braves’ manager Fredi Gonzalez , will now have to get his team mentally prepared for this decisive game , knowing full well that they cannot afford to lose. Game four , tonight , is in a must win or go home situation for Atlanta , wherein a great deal will be asked of Freddy Garcia , when he takes to the mound to oppose the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw .

As highly favored, as the St Louis Cardinals are meant to be in their series against the Pittsburgh Pirates . Who would have now thought that it would be the Cardinals on the brink of elimination , seeking to erase a 2-1 deficit ? Clint Hurdle and his staff , along with this team , have continued to defy all logic , as they continue to show a great deal of resilience, with Pittsburgh’s season being one of the major talking points of this baseball year . Pittsburgh will seek to close out the series in front of a home crowd of boisterous and raucous fans when the two teams meet at PNC Ballpark in Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania , on Monday afternoon.

As a former military vet , having counseled as well as assisted US military veterans in gaining benefits wrongfully denied by the federal government . It has become alarming to see how many of them, have become drug dependent by choice , on either prescriptive medication or far more hardened narcotics . Delusional and manic-depressive, as many of them have become, through the counseling and then providing them with the means to turn their respective situations around. That side of my participation , has become one of the most rewarding aspects of the work that I have done in this specific area ! Those veterans , who tend to fall through the cracks are either individuals who were never provided the assistance sought from the outset , or in a number of cases , simply those who felt that they can best deal with their issues on their own. In light of this , I raise the point of now unrestricted free agent and NBA star Lamar Odom , whose personal and professional career now seems to be careening out of control , after the revelations of his chemical dependency and a recent DUI charge, that he refutes . Personally , I feel that once your life has become intertwined with a member of the Kardashian family , his marriage to Khloe Kardashian , then you might as well place gun to your head and simply pull the trigger . Hopefully, Kanye West and Jaden Smith can learn something from this all , before it is too damn late .

With the NBA preseason already in full swing , it is extremely difficult to see how a team would be willing to acquire Odom , and then place him on their roster , with all of the personal baggage that the player now carries and his unwillingness to seek any type counseling or rehab . In 2012 with the Los Angeles Clippers , Lamar Odom’s statistics with the team can be best described as anemic and whose versatility at the height his career saw him as one of the most effective duel threats on both ends of the floor . With those days long done, the power forward has become a shell of that player , offering ,little by way of productivity , guidance for younger teammates , and who if anything, has become a “cautionary tale” of what wealth , fame and the glare of the spotlight can do to an athlete , who simply cannot handle the pressure , never mind the fact that , he has now become associated with a family that craves the spotlight , just as much Odom is now said to crave the hits of his drugs of choice cocaine and marijuana .. Which begs the question , what type of drug testing is now in place by the NBA hierarchy and how is that Lamar Odom’s issues were said to have gone unnoticed by the Clippers and his former team , the Dallas Mavericks ? Clearly, there is something awry with the league’s testing protocols and that of the teams’ own complete lack of oversight . Yet somehow , neither David Stern , the Mavericks’ front office or the NBPA saw if fit to address the issue , as it continues to carefully continues to cultivate that family friendly image of the league and its brand . Claims were made as recently as 2010 , that as many as forty-percent of the league’s players were recreational users of marijuana . I would dare say, that figure might well be considerably higher , with a number the athletes within the game, quite possibly using other illicit substances , while being able to circumvent the testing protocols of the NBA .

Not only will it be a long-shot for Lamar Odom to land a roster spot on a team , but with the preseason already up and running , and with the player being unable to prove himself as being in the right mental or physical shape . Why would a franchise be prepared to undertake such a high risk ? It would be stupid and financially though not a major burden , it would be money better well-spent , but it would be , elsewhere , on a player who can contribute immediately to a team .

The welcomed return of Derrick Rose to the NBA after a seventeen-month layoff will be a breath of fresh air in the league and add to its vitality . That being said, the former number one draft pick from the 2008 NBA Draft , was sorely missed by his Chicago Bulls’ teammates in the 2012 and 2013 NBA Playoffs . His return will certainly add more versatility and depth to perhaps, one of the best rosters in the entire Eastern Conference , in terms of overall depth. NBA preseason and all that it is said to accomplish , will be nothing more than for the coaches to assess the talent on their rosters , most notably the young rookies from the most recent draft and how those players will seek to acclimatize themselves . Though not seen as a consensus number one overall pick , Anthony Bennett was taken specifically , by the Cleveland Cavaliers to fit a role on a very good young team . It remains to be seen what the Cavaliers will have to offer their fans this season at the Quicken Loans Arena , in Cleveland , Ohio. Returning head coach, Mike Brown has been given the chance by GM Chris Grant to reprise the form shown when during the reign of LeBron James , the franchise was one of the more desirable venues to see some great basketball .

. Cleveland will open its regular season schedule with a home game against the Brooklyn Nets , a team that will see the debuts of their off-season acquisitions Kevin Garnett , Paul Pierce and Jason Terry . It will be all or bust , for the franchise , that will be coached by the recently appointed rookie Jason Kidd . GM Billy King and team owner Mikhail Prokhorov will have a great deal riding on the season beyond their reputations and the coaching acumen of Kidd .

For Derrick Rose and the Bulls , this season will most certainly offer the young point guard the chance to remind us once again why his prodigious talent has him earmarked as one of the handful of elite players now within the NBA , whose performances are at a consistently high level , when he is on a basketball court .



Picture gallery .


Picture and slideshow details .


(1) Wallace Gilberry (95) of the Cincinnati Bengals sacks Tom Brady (12) of the New England Patriots during their game at Paul Brown Stadium on October 6, 2013 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Bengals would go on to defeat the Patriots 13-6 . Getty Images / John Grieshop ….

(2) Chris Crocker (32) of the Cincinnati Bengals sacks Tom Brady (12) of the New England Patriots during their game at Paul Brown Stadium on October 6, 2013 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Bengals defeated the Patriots 13-6. Getty Images North America / John Grieshop ….

(3) Tony Romo (9) of the Dallas Cowboys yells the call against the Denver Broncos in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium on October 6, 2013 in Arlington, Texas. The Broncos would defeat the Cowboys 51-48 , dropping the home team to 2-3 within the NFC East , a division that is now beginning to look very much like an elephants graveyard. Getty Images / Ronald Martinez ….

(4) Rays’ catcher Jose Lobaton rounds the bases , having hit a home run to win the game for the Tampa Bay Rays , in their 5-4 victory over the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field in St Petersburg , Florida . With the victory , Tampa’s postseason hopes remain alive as they seek to even their ALDS at two games apiece . AP Photo / Mike Carlson …..

(5) Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers coming off three days rest pitched his team to a decisive game four victory over the Atlanta Braves , where they now await the winner of the Pittsburgh Pirates versus St Louis Cardinals’ series in the NLCS . The contests between those two teams is now tied at two games each (2-2). Game five will be played on Wednesday night at Busch Stadium in St Louis Missouri . AP Photo / Danny Moloshok …..

(6) Dodgers third baseman Juan Uribe looks on as his two-run home run makes its way out of the ballpark as catcher Brian McCann of the Braves looks on . Uribe alongside Carl Crawford’s two home runs secured a 4-3 victory for the home team as they defeated the Atlanta Braves 3-1 in the NLDS to reach the NLCS for the first time since 2009 .

(7) Lamar Odom seen here having just signed with the Los Angeles Clippers in 2012 . The troubled star now , an unsigned free agent hopes to catch on with an NBA franchise this season , in spite of his now well chronicled drug issues over the past eighteen months . Odom is now estranged from his wife Khloe Kardashian-Odom , television reality star and a member of the Kardashian family , whose reality show ” Keeping Up with the Kardashians” is one of E Entertainment Television’s most popular “unscripted” series . AP Photo / Hal Marcum …..


tophatal ………. 2013/10/07

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Jordan Carver shaking things up , so wonderfully .

Wet-n-wild with Jordan Carver . Nice , really nice !

Author: tophatal ...........

An avid sports' fans that's all !!!!!

26 thoughts on “Pride comes in various forms and it comes before a very great fall ….”

  1. Well , no great surprises during week five of the NFL . The one constant remains the bad coaching and continued excuses from the coaches and players alike .

    Peyton Manning 5-0 , his younger sibling Eli Manning 0-5 ? And now Eli believes that his game is on the same plane as last season ? How many times has the Giants’ quarterback been sacked this season , in comparison to 2012 ? Eli , go ##ck yourself and the horse you rode in on , you dumb ba#tard !

    The Braves are now like the French military , they’ll wave the white flag of surrender , quicker than a hooker who drops her draws to have sex for $50 and at the same time gives some “head” to a client .

    Kanye West , Lamar Odom and Jaden Smith , will soon find out , life isn’t that great , once you’ve had sex with a Kardashian female . Have you seen Bruce Jenner lately ? Goddamn !


    Wil Smith’s son Jaden Smith and his girlfriend Kylie Jenner .

    Their next child will be named South by South-West . Kanye West & Kim Kardashian


  2. Forty percent of the NBA’s players may well have used marijuana for recreational purposes only . Yet , the league’s hierarchy has never publicly addressed the matter . I wonder if it is because they are also lax in their testing protocols ?

    “I don’t smoke and tell , as our policy in the NBA is somewhat similar to the US military . We won’t ask , if you don’t tell ” . David Stern

    tophatal …………..


  3. I felt the Braves starting pitching would do them in against the Dodgers and I was right. And again, the Braves for some reason have no sense of urgency in the playoffs. They are typically built for the regular season, but there is a higher level of intensity in the playoffs, and the Braves don’t understand this concept.


        1. Maurice

          Not even the Chinese Basketball Association will want Odom at this point , given his proclivity for using drugs . They particularly frown upon the use of marijuana and other drugs for recreational use . Lamar Odom remains in complete denial and I would be completely surprised if an NBA team were to offer him a year-long veteran contract ! And as bad as that Lakers’ roster now looks , not even Odom at his best can help that team in any way this upcoming season .

          tophatal ………………


                1. I am sure that Ryan Seacrest and his frigging production company RSP [Ryan Seacrest Productions] (producers of the tv reality show) will squeeze every last frigging red cent out of that drama , simply get a spike in the ratings . And matriarch Kris Jenner will make sure that everyone in the clan will be fully on-board with every scripted episode .

                  That show along with the Jersey Shore continued with the dumb-ing down of America from an an intellectual and social standpoint . Way to go , E Tv and parent company Comcast /NBC Universal. Entertainment at its finest ? Fu#k no !

                  tophatal ……………….


                2. I frigging well hope not ! The show has been on long enough . The dumb-ing down of America . There are now , young girls now looking up to those three (Kim , Khloe & Kourtney ) skanks , as being role models ? LOL , LOL,LOL !!!

                  What knowledge could either of the three impart to a young girl , that would be of benefit to their life ?

                  tophatal ……………


    1. Maurice

      Fredi Gonzalez and the managerial staff have become too laid back and Jason Heyward’s comments about the season, emphasizes the culture that there now seems to be within the clubhouse . It’s as I said , there is no veteran leadership on the team , and in many respects what’s needed is someone like a Tom Glavine , Greg Maddux or John Smoltz either managing or there with the Braves in some sort of consultancy role to assist Gonzalez .

      How the hell can Heyward suggest that the season has been a success ? Winning a divisional title in the NL East where the other teams played so poorly that the vast majority of the time it was an embarrassment to watch the likes of the Marlins , Mets , Nationals and Phillies actually playing over the course of this season .

      tophatal …………………..


      1. You make a good point regarding having coaches or individuals around that are former Braves players with a history with the team to go along with Gonzalez. In case Gonzalez doesn’t like that set up the Braves may want to hire those types of folks as special assistants to the GM. It is going to be a difficult winter for the Braves and Kimbrel knowing that they were within 1 out of bringing him in for a 4 out save when Uribe who has a history of homering in big games did so. If Kimbrel were in for the 5 out save we may be talking about game 5 of the Dodgers/Atlanta today rather than Atlanta being out for the season. Who makes the decision that a closer can only get 4 outs as opposed to 5 or 6? Baseball needs to change in this area. When Puig got on 2nd base with 2 outs the game was on the line at that point. That’s when I’d want my closer in the game not a batter later.


        1. mlbblogscraiglewis

          The Braves’ organization has one of the best set-ups in all of baseball with team President John Schuerholz and GM Frank Wren leading the group of executives there . My issues however , remain with the managerial staff , and the lack of leadership there and amongst the players . Veterans such as Brian McCann , Tim Hudson (injured) , Gerald Laird and BJ Upton should have been leading by example, rather than taking a back seat and enjoying the ride of winning an NL East title and then failing so miserably in the postseason .

          There does not seem to be a sense of focus with the team or from Fredi Gonzalez for that matter . That to my mind is a damning indication of what is now wrong with the Braves ! No way in hell , a team with Maddux , Smoltz , Avery , Glavine and David Justice would have gone down without a fight against the Dodgers . That series was so pitiful to watch from the standpoint of being a diehard Braves’ fan .

          tophatal ……………


        1. Maurice

          It is not only that mindset , but consider this also , there is no one on that team that you can simply point to and call them a leader , much less a leader of men . Yet the teams that had Maddux , Glavine , Avery , Smoltz and Justice , they were plentiful in terms of leadership . Not so , with this current crop of players on the Braves .

          tophatal ……………………………..T


  4. Maurice

    The NBA’s policy when it comes to testing for banned or illicit substances remains a farce because in essence , David Stern doesn’t want to upset the apple-cart when it comes to the union and their executive committee . Players’ own proclivity when it comes to the recreational use of marijuana is well known . The league itself is literally full of so much damn hypocrisy . They welcomed the announcement of Jason Collins’ “coming out” and declaring his homosexuality , but yet the player has yet to be signed by a team .

    tophatal ………….


  5. Dallas lost and I am happy. The Cowboys can rot in hell. The Eagles won but who knows what will happen when the schmucks face the Yucaneers. The Eagles can lose big time. Denver is very good. The Pats are not as good as everyone thinks they are. Saints ae very good. Atlanta sucks. The Falcons are 1-4. Seattle lost to a very good Colts team. 7-9 or 8-8 will win the NFC East.


  6. bobby

    The NFL has become a watered down product with some terrible coaching , vastly overrated players and this is what fans now call parity . That is the biggest crock of s#it to come down the pipe since Al Gore made the statement that he contributed to the invention of the internet . This being the same Al Gore who sold his cable broadcast outlet Current Tv to Al Jazeera America Inc . Wow !

    “I did contribute to the invention of the internet and I helped Steve Jobs with IOS as well ” . Al Gore

    tophatal …………


  7. Watched my favorite QB put on QB clinic Sun night. Manning was on a tear…..wanna see them in
    the Super Bowl…………wonder if the Colts now miss him


    1. al clements

      Manning is just letting it rip this season and it would be unwise to bet against him winning his fifth league MVP award this year . There is no one remotely close , who is playing at his level of consistency at present . Certainly not, Drew Brees or Alex Smith , who are at present leading unbeaten teams in the NFL .

      I believe that Andrew Luck has proven to be the ideal replacement to succeed Peyton Manning and it has been shown in Luck’s play in 2012 and 2013 . Look at the Colts’ record and how they beat the Seahawks and that should tell you something about the resiliency of that team .

      It was valiant effort by the Pirates in their series against the Cardinals , but last night Adam Wainwright .. proved why he has been one of the best pitchers in the NL, all season long .

      tophatal ….


  8. I actually thought this could be the season another team knocked the Patriots from atop the AFC East.

    I just couldn’t tell which team that would be.

    With all that drama in the NWE, I just thought another team that had it a little more together might be able to sneak up and bite them on the ass. The only problem is, no team in that division does.


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