A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum …

A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum

It seems in the world of sports, things just get drastic by the second.  In  the   NFL  as  the  league  proceeds to the  lead-up to the  NFL  Draft  , teams  are   positioning   themselves to obtain  the  players   available  from   the  collective    seeking  to  make  their  mark  in  2018.  Away  from the  hotbed  of  decision  making  the  owners  themselves  are   either in  hot  water  or  looking to add more  coal to  the  firing   and  stocking  it  to  the  fan the  flames more  widely .  Houston   Texans’   owner  Robert  McNair  is  doubling  down  on  his  comments   that in  some   aspects could be  seen  as  insensitive  as well  as  racist. Now the beleaguered owner  has  stepped  back  into the fray,   stating  that  he has  nothing  to  apologize for . I  suppose  calling your  players  inmates and  then  caustically  referring  to  them  as  slaves  might  not  seem overly  expressive,  but in  light  of recent  events, I believe  McNair  might  not  be  aware of  what  is  happening  around him  and  elsewhere  in  the  world.  Perched atop  of his  ivory tower  with  his  amassed  wealth ,  it’s   always easy  for an aging  white  Anglo  Saxon  male  to say  whatever  he  wants  and  whenever he  wants,   without  fear  of being  held  accountable .


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Robert McNair  obviously  is  following in the  footsteps  of   President   Donald  Trump  who  has  become known  for  his  caustic  remarks   on   a wide  variety  of subjects.  To  date  as    Trump   tries to  navigate  the  treacherous waters  of  his  Presidency, there  is  growing  belief  with all of  the  controversy  now surrounding  his  Presidency, there will  be  great deal  more  flak  coming  his  way, especially  as he  enters the  midterm   elections  and  the   Republican  Party are struggling to  hold  unto both  chambers  of   Congress.

For Robert  McNair and the Houston Texans   last   season  was a  coming  down  to  earth   for the  franchise as they  played  much of  their schedule  without  two of  their  best   players  , with   JJ   Watt and    Jadaveon  Clowney   missing   much  of  the   Texans’  regular season schedule due to  injury. In  their  wake, it  was  left  to  the  surprisingly resourceful Jacksonville  Jaguars , came  out of nowhere  to  win the  AFC  South  and make  their way to the NFL postseason where  they  would  be  upended in  the AFC  championship game by  the New England  Patriots .   Jaguars’ quarterback  Blake Bortles may  well  have  won himself  over some new  fans, but I’m   not  so sure  it’s enough  to suggest  that he is now  good  enough to  join the  ranks  of  the  league’s  elite quarterbacks.    Jacksonville hit  lightning in a bottle during the  first  two  rounds of the postseason.

It  will  be  interesting to see how  both the Houston  Texans  and  Jacksonville Jaguars will fare  during the NFL  Draft with their  decisions made.

I am no longer  at  a  loss to  explain  why   Colin  Kaepernick  remains   unsigned as  a free agent   quarterback, suffice to  say the NFL   still  seeks to make  him  a pariah .   While  the  former  San  Francisco 49ers’  passer  remains  adrift one of  his  contemporaries    Robert  Griffin III   has  been  signed  as   the  backup   quarterback to  Joe  Flacco ,   a former  Superbowl  MVP  with the  Ravens.   It  will  be  interesting  to  see   Griffin  is  able to mount  a serious enough  challenge  to  unseat   Flacco  as the  starting quarterback  for the  Ravens .Robert Griffin    was  signed  to  a  one-year   deal  with  the  AFC  North  based  franchise.

The   NBA  regular  season  will   come  to   an   end with new  divisional champions ,  but  a sense  of  deja-vu  in terms  of  the  leading  contenders  for  the   NBA  title . Defending NBA  champions  the Golden State Warriors    are  not  as  dominant as  last season and  the   loss of   two-time League MVP  and  All  Star Steph Curry has left  the team looking  somewhat   vulnerable .    With the loss of  Curry over the last  three weeks, the team has  struggled, but they still  remain  a clear  favorite to make it back to the Western Conference Finals where  they  are  likely  to  face the   Houston  Rockets  ,  currently the number  one seed in the conference and the team  with the best record in  the  NBA. Both of these teams will be in action this weekend in games that will be of vital importance .

Tiger Woods is looking to play himself back into contention at The Masters in Augusta , Georgia , and the thought of winning his fifth Green Jacket cannot be far from his mind. However, his second round has been erratic, with him now being twelve shots off the pace behind tournament leader Patrick Reed at seven under par (-7) at this moment in time. As we know the final two rounds of any of the Grand Slam Majors tend to be the most exciting aspects of a contest , because that is where the best players in the world tend to showcase their skills as well as their mental psyche.Woods would have to play some remarkable golf over the final thirty-six holes to be remotely in with a chance of winning this particular Major.

Conor McGregor , remains a gregarious creature of habit , with narcissistic tendencies, a penchant for looking to belittle others, showing that he’s a misogynist and a racist. Let’s not be fooled here, as UFC President Dana White welcomes these elements from the biggest name in the sport. MMA needs McGregor more than he now needs the sport, because with what looks like the apparent retirement of Georges St-Pierre and the ultimate banishment of Jon Jones . The UFC is in need of a major star. They do possess one in Demetrious Johnson , but for some reason White has not done his utmost to promote the most successful fighter in UFC history. McGregor has once again found himself on the wrong side of the law as he faces assault charges from a recent UFC event. If found guilty of these charges he could face possible jail time, but there are indications that he might be willing to accept a plea deal and avoid serving anytime in prison.

If Conor McGregor never enters an octagon again to face an opponent it would not be lost on me, as I dislike the fighter and what he stands for, which has nothing at all to do with the sport.

So as the NBA season winds down , the divisions are all but sewn up but there are still one or two things to be finalized within each of the two conference , East and West . The Minnesota Timberwolves and Denver Nuggets are now in a dog-fight for the final berth within the Western Conference, with the winner looking forward to a first round match-up against the Houston Rockets , the team with the best record in the league as well as the conference. A series against either of these two teams for the Rockets should prove to be a one-sided affair favoring the top seeds.

For the reigning NBA champions the Golden State Warriors , having
been without Steph Curry for the past two weeks, the team’s Head Coach Steve Kerr has stated he is willing to rest his All Star point guard for the first round of the NBA Playoffs , rather than risk further injury to the player. Curry himself might not be entirely happy with the situation , but Kerr knows that the deeper their run the Playoffs goes , the better the Warriors’ chances will be in having a player of Steph Curry’s caliber fully fit and able. A first round match-up for the Golden State Warriors would see them pitted against the Oklahoma City Thunder led by point guard Russell Westbrooke . Having split their regular season series at two games apiece , this series might not be as clear-cut as one think.

Tiger Woods couldn’t get the job done at Augusta National Golf Course as he sought to win his fifth Green Jacket and push himself one step closer to Jack Nicklaus’ record for the number of Grand Slam Major victories (18). Woods
had
a disastrous final two rounds of The Masters , the first Grand Slam Major of the season on the PGA Tour . Woods is like to take a week or so away from the PGA Tour missing the next few scheduled events. Patrick Reed for his part simply played some stellar golf over the final two rounds , though Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth sought to make the final two rounds very riveting for the fans.

Patrick Reed’s victory was the first Grand Slam of his career , while it also pushes him up the FedEx Cup Standings as well as the World Golf Rankings . . The next Major on the PGA Tour schedule will be the US Open at Shinnecock Hills , in New York from June 14th to the 17th , 2018 .

Still too early as of yet to make statements about which teams are playing the best in baseball at present , but it’s pretty safe to say with the injuries already suffered by the New York Yankees at this stage of the MLB season , it could be a struggle for them over the remainder of their schedule , if certain players don’t step up to the plate. The divisional standings should have provided us with something of an insight into the psyche of the ball-clubs at present . The Yankees are 5-5 over their last ten games with their pitching and hitting struggling at present. For team manager Aaron Boone this has to be very frustrating seeing his team struggle like this. Giancarlo Stanton will have a great deal to prove to the Yankees’ fans as well his new-found teammates . His salary alone demands it when you consider that he is among the highest paid players in the game and by far the highest paid on the New York Yankees’ roster.

The New York Yankees will not be in action on Monday 9th , April as they prepare for a three-game series against the Boston Red Sox , beginning on Tuesday, 10th April . On the mound for the Yankees in that opening game will be starting pitcher Luis Severino (2-0) facing Chris Sale of the Red Sox. New York is need of a morale boost and a victory over Boston would go some way in fulfilling the angst now to be found within the organization after such a rough start.

While the New York Yankees are having struggles of their own, their divisional rivals the Tampa Bay Rays are pretty much a capsized vessel. Only the Chicago White Sox have a worst team ERA (5.88) at present within the AL as of the 9th April. Rays’ manager Kevin Cash and the managerial staff have to be at a loss to explain the team’s poor play as they head into the second-half of the month of April. They will begin a three-game series on the road against the White Sox on Monday and it will interesting to see how they will fare against their AL rival. . Of the players who are said to be offering any type of production for the Rays, there has only been veteran Denard Span as a stand-out for the entire team.

I certainly feel before anyone can make any real judgment concerning the ball-clubs, we should wait until mid-June before making any real assessment of the teams and how they are likely to fare.

Is it possible for Bryce Harper to have another astonishing season and simply push up his value as he seeks to become a free agent. Harper is off to another good start as he and Washington Nationals seek to have another very good season. The continued issue for the Nationals remains the fact they have yet to make a deep postseason run in their current guise. This has to be very frustrating for Bryce Harper , given his talent and being surrounded by a more than capable group of teammates . If the Nationals are not able to prove themselves this season , then it could lead to GM Mike Rizzo making unwanted sacrifices before the end of this season , while looking to keep Bryce Harper as a long-term member of this organization. There is no doubt the front office remains under a great deal of pressure to succeed. This team needs to win consistently, with their being contributions coming from everyone on the roster over the course of this season. The Nationals will be in action over the next three days as they face the Atlanta Braves in a home series at National Ballpark in Washington, DC.

There will be many sports’ stories unfurling over the coming months and the drama from it all will be played out in all parts of the media for the fans. What are the possible segues that you’d like to see coming out this all with regard to the stories now percolating ?

Tophatal …… 2018/04/06 03:30 pm


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

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

83 thoughts on “A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum …”

  1. So the Atlanta Falcons believe that starting quarterback Matt Ryan should be rewarded like a super-star ? Having won a League MVP and his guiding of the Falcons to the Superbowl , where they inexplicably gave up a double digit lead to the New England Patriots ,while having the game in hand. I would like for someone to explain to me why GM Thomas Dimitroff and the front office led by Arthur Blank (co founder of Home Depot) believes Ryan is worth a $150 million contract with $100 million of that being guaranteed money . Matt Ryan’s regular season record is very good and among the best of any quarterback in the league over the last five years. Yet when you look at his playoff record and in particular the loss to New England , you just have to wonder if he is really worth that kind of money ?

    In the NFL Draft the Falcons sought to bolster the team’s roster for the upcoming season . In what will likely be a very difficult NFC South division in 2018 , it will very interesting to see how the Falcons will fare against their divisional rivals and the same can be said for Matt Ryan .

    Like

    1. Tophat,
      This investment was a necessity to keep their franchise’s brand. Who are they gonna replace him with? You or me? The owner might have a odd surname, but he sure isn’t a blank. Good move.

      Like

      1. Ronbets

        I can understand that GM Thomas Dimitroff wants to make Matt Ryan happy , with that big contract . but to my mind if the wants to make the fans happy, don’t you think he ought to be looking to get the best available free agents that are on the market in order to make the Atlanta Falcons a great deal better than they are ? Other than Julio Jones who to my mind is a top-five receiver in the league , there isn’t really much to this Falcons’ team . The way Atlanta capitulated to the New England Patriots in the 2016 Superbowl was very much proof of that fact .

        The Atlanta Falcons are lucky enough they have a loyal fans , but beyond that in terms of overall economic value to the city there isn’t really a great deal going for the franchise .

        Tophatal …………..

        Like

      2. Ronbets

        It looks as of Eli Manning could be looking at some serious jail time if these allegations are proven to be true . Alleged claims made against Manning and several members of the coaching staff , are that they sold bogus memorabilia items and sought to profit from it financially. I can see either a plea deal being worked with a fine being paid by Manning but someone among the coaching staff will be facing a stiff jail sentence for their involvement.

        Courtesy of ProFootballTalk.com

        NFL has no comment on Eli Manning’s pending fraud trial

        By Mike Florio

        With Giants quarterback Eli Manning facing a fraud trial in New Jersey Superior Court, he apparently doesn’t have a problem in the Court of Roger Goodell. Yet.

        The NFL had declined comment regarding whether the latest development in the memorabilia fraud case against Manning and the Giants pulls the situation within the Personal Conduct Policy or has sparked an investigation under the policy. A Thursday ruling from the presiding judge determined that Manning will be the only defendant who faces a claim of common-law fraud before a jury.

        The NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy specifically prohibits “[c]rimes of dishonesty such as blackmail, extortion, fraud, money laundering, or racketeering.” (Emphasis added.) More generally, the policy forbids “[c]onduct that undermines or puts at risk the integrity of the NFL, NFL clubs, or NFL personnel.”

        Eli Manning is one of the most liked and respected players in the NFL. I like and respect him. But if a jury finds that he perpetrated a fraud regarding game-used helmets that weren’t actually game-used, those two portions of the Personal Conduct Policy can’t be ignored.

        The league may, if Eli eventually is found to have committed fraud under New Jersey civil laws, contend that there’s a difference between civil and criminal fraud. However, fraud is fraud.


        Click on link to read article in full.


        The fact that no one from the NFL hierarchy wants to address this publicly shows that they want to keep their cards close to their chest.

        Tophatal

        Like

  2. Tophat,
    Stiff jail time? lmao. With Manning’s BR and legal team, I’d be surprised if he gotta slap on the butt. Hypocrite Bill Cosby, if he accepted plea deal, wudda received sex offender status and minimum house confinement to watch reruns of “I Spy”. Cosby the predator, has passed Weinstein on the scumbag charts.

    Like

    1. Ronbets

      I don’t know that Bill Cosby , Harvey Weinstein or Charlie Sheen can past the antics of former Speaker of The House Dennis Hastert . That son of a bitch , admitted to having sexually molested at least sixty-five boys during his career as a former wrestling coach at a high school where he taught and then within House of Representatives . He paid a $250,000 fine but never actually served any time in prison for his crimes, being sentenced instead to fifteen months but having an ankle bracelet and his being monitored . What type of bull$hit is that ?

      Former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert (center) is seen here with House Representative Nancy Pelosi

      I’m not saying the Eastern Conference of the NBA is weak but they ought to now add some teams from the WNBA for at least some comical entertainment. The Toronto Raptors (0-4) had their ass handed to them by the Cleveland Cavaliers (4-0) , where LeBron James looked like Michael Jordan on steroids during the series .

      Tophatal …………….

      Like

      1. Tophat,

        Cosby is by far worse than any of the other fiends mentioned. He’s on par with Dr. Nasser. Cosby the lecturing hypocrite drugged and took away most of his victim’s free will. Compare it to a sicko fucking a sex doll….only these were real women with no choice. He won’t have to worry about doing time in the big house. I doubt that he lives past the long appeal process.

        Like

        1. Ronbets


          Larry Nassar
          allowed to get away with his activities by USA Gymnastics , University of Michigan , noted trainers Bela and Anna Karolyi , trainers of Romanian legend Nadia Comaneci . If you don’t think that the crimes (sexual assault of teenage boys) of Dennis Hastert were not egregious then you’re clearly off-kilter. Not only did he do this while as a wrestling coach but also bear in mind he served as the Speaker of the House and carried out the same heinous atrocities while serving in that role. Bear in he was third in line after the US President and Vice President for the most powerful political office in the world. Current US Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his two predecessors , Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch chose not to seek any type indictment against Hastert , only an admission of guilt , $250,000 fine and twelve months of wearing an ankle monitor . All this for the sexual assaults of multiple teenage boys ? Are you fu#king kidding me ? Within the US Justice System it’s all about protection for the complexion .

          Charlie Sheen has tested HIV positive and knowingly had sex with who knows countless women , not having advised them of his medical status ? Yet he too , gets a walk and has yet to be charged with a crime .

          Tophatal …………..

          Like

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