The   Fallout Could Lead to A Breakout   …

So  we’re  now  at a  point  in the  sporting  calendar  where  there’s  a  vast  array  of sports’   activities   taking  center-stage  and  usual  the  non-stop   cycle   of the  NFL  (National  Football  League) continues  with  activity.   Reigning  Superbowl  champions  have  all  of their  ducks  lined  up  in a  row   , having  signed  several  players  from their  championship  winning  roster  to  new  deals  ,  with  their  Superbowl  MVP  ,    Tom  Brady  also  agreeing to  a new  deal at an almost  bargain  basement  price   by  his  own standard s  .    Brady  will  head  into the upcoming season seeking  an unprecedented  eighth  Superbowl  ring , having  won  six  with the  New  England  Patriots  and  his  seventh  with  the  Tampa  Bay  Buccaneers    , for the  franchise’s  second  Lombardi  Trophy  in their history.

Tom Brady, currently a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers .

Beyond what has been taking place by way of the league and the teams seeking to position themselves for the upcoming NFL Draft and salary cap issues , we have seen the retirements of Alex Smith , Philip Rivers and Drew Brees, with all three veteran quarterbacks having varying degrees of success for their respective teams . One team looking to take advantage of this all will likely be the New York Jets after their recent foray with the trading away of quarterback Sam Darnold . More likely than not the Jets will seek to draft a quarterback to replace Darnold who simply did not meet the expectations of the franchise during his stay .

Trevor Lawrence could very well be taken as the number one overall player and most certainly be among the top quarterbacks taken by the end of the first two rounds of this upcoming Draft.

JANUARY 07: Trevor Lawrence #16 of the Clemson Tigers reacts after his teams 44-16 win over the Alabama Crimson Tide in the CFP National Championship presented by AT&T at Levi’s Stadium on January 7, 2019 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Things have become testy since the All Star Game with their being a plethora of uneven results . One thing is certain no envisioned that the Los Angles Lakers would be struggling to remain among the top-five teams within the Western Conference . With LeBron James by far the best player in their lineup , it will be interesting to see how the team fares over the remainder of their schedule . Next up for this Frank Vogel coached team will be two games on the road against the Dallas Mavericks . The first of the duo of contests will take place on the 22nd April , 2021 .

The Lakers’ in division rivals the Los Angeles Clippers are vying for one to the top three seeds within the Western Conference , but it has been the resilient play of the Phoenix Suns which has been a great surprise to everyone over the past ten days. Led by Kawhi Leonard the Clippers will be in action themselves with several games of note . An upcoming contest against the Houston Rockets should tell us a great deal about this Clippers’ roster .

Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors .

Can Steph Curry lead the Golden State Warriors back into postseason contention ? That’s an intriguing answer for a team without one of it’s best players in Klay Thompson. The Warriors can make into the NBA Playoffs by way of the play-in factor , a new addition to the playoffs due to a shortened regular season schedule brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic . Golden State for it’s part will be looking to play with the real consistency . In their next game the Warriors are due to meet the Denver Nuggets at home on Friday , 23rd April .

Far be it for me to suggest , but I get the feeling that while the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers are seen as the teams to beat within the Eastern Conference , one team which is being overlooked just happens to be the Milwaukee Bucks , but given their recent failures in the postseason it would be easy to write them off once again . Yet for all sense and purpose the Bucks led by two time League MVP , Giannis Antetokounmpou seems to have his teammates playing the way Head Coach Mike Budenholzer has sought . This team is quite capable of overcoming the deficit within the conference and ending up as the top seed . Next up for the Bucks will be a game against the 76ers as par of their regular season series. The contest should tell us a great about the intentions of both teams and the directions they’re said to be heading .

LeBron James has been playing with the level of someone who belies his age James and the Los Angeles Lakers as the reigning NBA champions are having an extremely tough season . It seems unaccustomed for this team to be having issues within the league at present , but injuries as well as inconsistency has played it’s part in the Frank Vogel coached roster . James and the Lakers have an upcoming game against the Dallas Mavericks , having lost to Dallas previously in their most recent match-up on the 22nd April .

Time may well be running out for both the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers to really prove their credibility within the NBA and their championship aspirations. High payrolls notwithstanding it is becoming pretty clear that there’s not a great deal of real consistency needed .

Alex Rodriguez having not been able to make a successful attempt to become a MLB team owner, but the former New York Yankees’ player has joined a consortium with a view to buying the Minnesota Timberwolves , where owner , Glen Taylor is seeking to sell the franchise , but under which retains control while the new ownership group acclimatizes to their fiduciary responsibilities . Rodriguez and his partner , Marc Lore an e-Commerce executive and CEO of Walmart’s e-commerce operations, purchased the Timberwolves for a reputed $1.5 billion .

What else needs to be said about the Los Angeles Dodgers at this juncture ? This weekend there will be a full cluster of games to be played . Dave Robert’s has a team playing with a great deal of aplomb with his coaching staff being at the top of their game . Roberts will have his team ready for a fairly tough weekend schedule where they will be playing the San Diego Padres . On the mound as opposing pitchers will be Yu Darvish of the Padres against Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers .

Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels is off to another terrific season for his team . It will be interesting to see what transpires this weekend as the Dodgers face the Houston Astros .It will be Andrew Heaney facing off against Zack Greinke . .

There are several great games scheduled for both Saturday , 24th April , as well as Sunday , 25th . One of the contests for today (Saturday) pits the Boston Red Sox against the Seattle Mariners with these two AL teams seeking to position themselves within their respective divisions and league . On the mound for the Mariners will be Chris Flexen as he faces Nathan Eovaldi of the Red Sox . While the Boston Red Sox are riding high their divisional rivals the New York Yankees are struggling to to make their presence felt having posted an 8-11 record as of the 23rd April . Manager Brett Boone and his team of his priced stars will be looking to placate themselves of their inauspicious start to the season . To round out their current series the Yankees will be in action today when they face the Cleveland Indians on the road . The opposing pitchers will be Gerrit Cole of the Yankees facing off against Shane Bieber of the Indians .

Freddie Freeman of the Atlanta Braves and reigning NL MVP .

Early leaders in various statistics provides us with something special to expect over this season within baseball . I would like to think that the major awards for this season will go to credible candidates .

What if anything are you hoping to bear witness to this season within the world of sports ?

Tophatal …………

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Let’s take a walk on the wild side …

Let’s take a walk on the wild side

The fallout of the NFL season has begun with the firing of three NFL head coaches in the past ten days. There will likely be more to follow at the end of the regular season as the teams now will play their final games of the seventeen-week sixteen-game schedule. Jeff Fisher was given his marching orders by the front office of the Los Angeles Rams . Fisher for his part , stated he was proud of the accomplishments achieved , most notably the wins attained. Unfortunately, for the Rams , his record with the franchise was deplorable and overall it was sub. 500 . Buffalo Bills’ head coach Rex Ryan was ousted after GM Doug Whaley made the decision the vociferous head coach had to go. Two seasons of absolute failure with his teams failing to perform was far too much for team owner Terry Pegula to bear. It should be noted , Pegula purchased the Bills for a reputed $1.6 billion with the understanding he wanted a competitive product on the field of play , alongside a world-class organization within the front office . Clearly , the Buffalo Bills have fallen way short of the target sought by their billionaire owner .

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Another NFL owner, whose fortunes have failed to meet his own lofty expectations , are those of Jacksonville Jaguar’ owner Shahid Khan . Since his acquiring the franchise, the Jaguars have yet to post a winning season or have a top-two placement finish within the AFC South . Jacksonville , also seem to be waiting on the maturity level of their top pick from the 2014 NFL Draft . Quarterback Blake Bortles continues to struggle and much of this stems from the fact there front office has never placed around him, a team capable enough to win consistently . Gus Bradley was made the sacrificial lamb and with good reason, as he was never able to get the best out his players during any part of his tenure with the Jaguars. His firing was not a complete surprise to most NFL fans or analysts around the league.

Several of the divisions within the NFL have a reached a conclusion concerning their winners , but there are one or two which have yet to be decided. Likewise , within the AFC and NFC , there are postseason berths which are still up for grabs and many of the teams on the outside looking in , will be hoping to make one last attempt to make it in. Not to be left out of the equation are the teams capable of playing spoiler for the aspirants with an eye on a postseason position. Needless to say, all of the outcomes will become known to the fans as the week seventeen schedule comes to a close on Sunday evening (1st January). The Los Angeles Rams are set to face the Arizona Cardinals , while the Buffalo Bills will have a divisional match-up against the New York Jets and the Jacksonville Jaguars will find themselves at the mercy of the Indianapolis Colts this Sunday.

Hue Jackson and the Cleveland Browns (1-15) managed what a number of fans did not think would be possible for the team this season. The Browns actually won their first game of the year , having defeated the San Diego Chargers in week sixteen . Prior to the victory , the Browns managed to lose fifteen consecutive games , one shy of the regular season record achieved by the Detroit Lions in 2008 . It is a record which remains intact , but there were several people who believed the Browns were capable of matching the feat this season. Certainly, the odds-makers in Las Vegas may well have hedged their bets, but I get the feeling they favored the Chargers to pull off the victory !

I am of the opinion, you never mess with a good thing , when things are going good, why seek change ? Jerry Jones and the coaching staff are said to be ‘toying’ with the idea of inserting Tony Romo back into the starting lineup of the Dallas Cowboys for their final game of the season. Now consider the fact, while Romo was sidelined due to injury, the Cowboys were led by a rookie quarterback , Dak Prescott , who has since broken rookie franchise records for Dallas and actually making believers out of the detractors, who felt the Dallas Cowboys were past their prime. Not only have they been the best team in the NFC throughout the season , but also the best team in the NFL over much of the season.

Tony Romo will likely get some playing time in this game against the Philadelphia Eagles , but I do not feel it would be in the bests interests of the Dallas Cowboys were he to play the entire game ! The veteran quarterback remains susceptible to innocuous injuries and clearly as his career is in its twilight , he is no longer the passer everyone believed him to be , much less a player capable of leading this franchise to a Superbowl victory. His postseason record simply speaks for itself , in spite of the continuous excuses being made for one of the most overrated quarterbacks in the NFL over the past twelve seasons.

The Dallas Cowboys might well have been the surprise of the season , but I feel the most disappointing teams in the NFL were the Indianapolis Colts and the New Orleans Saints . Both teams have very good coaches , with Chuck Pagano leading the Colts , while Sean Payton has led the Saints as their head coach for over eight years , along the way winning the Saints ‘ first Superbowl in the franchise’s history , during the 2009 NFL season . Defense and a lack of it has been one of the many issues which explains many of the woes faced by both the Colts and Saints this season. Quarterbacks Andrew Luck of the Indianapolis Colts and Drew Brees of the Saints have been productive , but it could also be said, they are having down years by way of their own lofty expectations. Brees and his Saints’ teammates will lock horns in a season divisional rematch when they meet the Atlanta Falcons , while as I alluded to earlier the Colts will be facing the Jaguars. This season continues to be one filled with surprises and they will continue once the postseason begins .

So let me get this straight , fans are acting all surprised as the Philadelphia 76ers currently have the worst record in the NBA ? It’s not as if this wasn’t to be expected , considering the Sixers at its core remains the same team seen , as last season . The coaching staff has remained in place, with Brett Brown still serving as the Sixers’ head coach. The only real change other than another mediocre draft has been the insertion of Jerry Colangelo and his son, Bryan Colangelo into the franchise’s front office to head their Basketball Operations . Team owner Joshua Harris remains bereft of ideas and it would seem this franchise is more interested in off the court activities , having purchased several non-core basketball interests . One would have thought there would be an urgency to not only invest in the on-court product but also make sure this is a team built to be competitive and to win ?

Over their last twelve games played , the Philadelphia 76ers have performed with the mediocrity expected of a team with little or nothing to play for . Brett Brown will now prepare the Sixers for their next game when they face the Utah Jazz on the road this Thursday , 29th December . It is becoming abundantly clear the Sixers are playing to be part of the Draft Lottery for the third time in the last three seasons. It is no longer idiotic to suggest the NBA hierarchy led by Commissioner Adam Silver and the team owners are willing to accept continued mediocrity from their franchises , just as long as everyone is making money along the way . In the case of the league . when you have an estimated $7.7 billion a year in gross revenues , there are unlikely to be any complaints from within the NBA fraternity .

It didn’t seem that long ago when Rajon Rondo was on the crest of being seen as one of the elite point guards in the NBA. Having won an NBA championship with the Boston Celtics , the player soon began to become a detriment to the team and who was disliked by his teammates and coaching staff . His departure from the Celtics and subsequent travels , has seen a decline in his productivity and to the point where is now being benched by his current head coach Fred Hoiberg of the Chicago Bulls . Hoiberg has this team playing some moderate baseball , while holding down the seventh spot within the Eastern Conference and 8 ½ games behind the Cleveland Cavaliers (23-7) within the Central Division . If things continue to disintegrate between Rajon Rondo and Fred Hoiberg then the point guard’s days with the Bulls could be numbered. Though he is not due to become a free agent until 2018 , GM Gar Forman and John Paxson might think it feasible to cut their ties with the disgruntled player. Rajon Rondo continues to say all the right things , by vocally cheering on his teammates, but it cannot hide Hoiberg’s dissatisfaction with Rondo , as he is slowly becoming a distraction for the franchise.

The Chicago Bulls have essentially become Jimmy Butler’s team though he will be aided by veteran guard Dwyane Wade , as the players seek to rally behind one the league’s brightest young stars . Butler and his teammates coming off a five-point victory over the Indiana Pacers will be on the court to face the Brooklyn Nets at the United Center in Chicago , Illinois, on Wednesday night. Brooklyn’s head coach Kenny Atkinson and the Nets are in need of a win , given their sorry state of affairs at present . This will be another problem year for the Brooklyn Nets and one in which, I do believe team owner , Mikhail Prokhorov will actively and aggressively seek to sell either a majority stake or the franchise in its entirety to any interested party willing to buy the Nets. He has sunk a considerable sum into the Brooklyn Nets as an investment and it has been to no avail . Prokhorov will perhaps retain ownership of the Barclays Center and the surrounding properties owned by his holding company, but the franchise must go , forfeiture of a sale .

If DeMarcus Cousins continues along his path of self-destruction , then he will have no one else to blame but himself. It is becoming exceedingly difficult to try to justify any reason for the mercurial and talented center to be kept by the Sacramento Kings . Cousins might well be the best player on the team’s roster , but he also has become their problem child , with a combustible temperament , which is also a detriment to the team. Former Kings’ players , Vlade Divac and Peja Stojakovic are senior front office executives for this Kings’ franchise and it does not appear that they carry enough of an influence to change the mindset of Cousins. The coaching staff of Dave Joerger also appears to be dumbfounded and at a loss for words in dealing with their troubled star. Suspensions and monetary fines by the Kings or the NBA hierarchy has done little to sway the behavior of DeMarcus Cousins and it is difficult to see how he has the respect of his teammates at this juncture.

At 14-17 , the Sacramento Kings are third within the Pacific Division of the Western Conference , some 12 ½ games behind division leaders, the Golden State Warriors , who are for all sense and purpose running away with the division and on their way to another divisional title . For the Kings their divisional record is poor and even poorer when facing divisional opponents. The Sacramento Kings have yet to meet the Golden State Warriors this season , but their first meeting of regular season schedule will take place on the 8th January at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California ,. The two teams will face each other four times over the course of the season and I believe the Warriors will end up being the winners of the regular season series between the two teams ! DeMarcus Cousins and his teammates will have their next game against the Memphis Grizzlies at home this Saturday, 31st December .

The New York Knicks might well be the most valuable NBA franchise , solely based on their location , but when it comes to basketball legacy within the NBA everything starts and ends with the Boston Celtics or the Los Angeles Lakers . For Lakers’ head coach Luke Walton , his rookie season has been a tough baptism of fire , but he is coping well , has the respect of his players , but most noticeably , the front office have continued to back him all the way. However, on the personal side , with the revelation that Jeanie Buss had ended her four-year engagement to former Lakers’ head coach Phil Jackson . Conspiracy theorists have run amok, with the suggestion , because Jeanie couldn’t persuade Phil to return to the franchise , she torpedoed their relationship to devote more time to the Los Angeles Lakers, leaving Jackson to try and reinvigorate the fortunes of the New York Knicks.

The Los Angeles Lakers are struggling , having lost thirteen of their last fifteen games , leaving them battling among the also-rans of the West , as well as within their division . If there has been one thing which Luke Walton has been able to convince his players in doing and that is to play hard for the entire forty-eight minutes of a game. The Lakers’ last victory came in a game played against the Los Angeles Clippers on Christmas Day , but prior to that , you would have to go back as far as the 16th December when they defeated the Philadelphia 76ers at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia , Pennsylvania. Luke Walton and his team will be looking to increase their wins’ tally, when they play their last game of 2016 , facing the Dallas Mavericks on the 29th December in a home game. The most consistent player for the Lakers throughout much of the season has been Lou Williams , averaging 18.8 points a game , a far cry from the 31.7 points per game , averaged by the league’s leading scorer and best player this season , Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder . Now one can understand why the Lakers problems have manifested themselves in the way they have done .

The Los Angeles Lakers simply have has no one on the roster who can score or average a double-double per game , much less their being any type of support coming off their bench. Defensively the team is also very anemic , but as long as there remains a commitment from the players in doing things the way Luke Walton believes they should be done, then there will likely be gradual signs of improvement from the team.

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Within the realms of the NBA and NFL which stories do you believe will create the greatest impact in the coming week or days ?

Tophatal ……….. 2016/12/28

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Don’t sell yourself short, as the media and sports in general has a way of doing that

Don’t sell yourself short, as the media and sports in general has a way of doing that

Well, with the NFL season now in our rear-view mirrors , even with the media extolling the virtues of the Superbowl L (SB 50) , it showed be noted what should have been an exciting game, turned out to be a nondescript error prone event . The Denver Broncos came way with a 24-10 victory over the Carolina Panthers , as Peyton Manning won the second Superbowl title of his career. Now we will all wait and ponder whether or not the four-time winning League MVP will ride off into the sunset by formally announcing his retirement from the league.

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Manning for his part has not revealed what his intentions are likely to be , but we should bear in mind the player has to notify the Broncos’ front office of his intent by no later than midnight Wednesday, February 29th in order to not obligate the Denver Broncos having to pay him for the upcoming regular season. Elsewhere around the NFL , the stories remain the same, as teams now begin their off-season deliberations as to which players they will keep and which they will let go. Personally, this is the one time of the year which I completely become disinterested in concerning the NFL ! Likewise for the NFL Draft and all of the prognosticators and prognostication as to which rookies are likely to end up where.

The Air Canada Centre in Toronto , Canada , will be venue where the 2016 NBA All Star Weekend scheduled events will take place . For the fans in attendance at the league’s mid-season showcase event , there will be a cavalcade of staged shows of which the main events will cover this entire weekend beginning on 12 February, 2016 . Their (NBA) schedule resumes on 18th of this month with the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs riding high atop of the Western Conference as well as the two having the best record in the NBA . Looming ominously close to the two Western Conference based teams are the Oklahoma City Thunder , led by the explosive duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook , it is easy to understand why this Billy Donovan coached team has cast a giant shadow over the entire league as of late . While the big news’ stories in the NBA in recent weeks, have been the summary dismissals of David Blatt from the Cleveland Cavaliers and Derek Fisher by the New York Knicks from their respective coaching positions. Blatt has been replaced by his one-time assistant Tyronn Lue , while Fisher’s successor just happens to be , Phil Jackson’s former assistant with the Los Angeles Lakers , former player Kurt Rambis . GM’s David Griffin of the Cavaliers and Steve Mills in conjunction with Jackson made the decisions to dismiss the their hand-picked candidates.

From my own perspective , these choices were simply ridiculous on the face of it . with neither David Blatt or Derek Fisher having any NBA coaching experience at all, much less dealing with megalomaniac characters of today’s NBA players ! If a coach is unable to deal with today’s stars within the league, then there is absolutely no chance of success whatsoever.

In the Eastern Conference , the Miami Heat are having issues with regard to their consistency as well as player behavioral issues. Hassan Whiteside , considered to be a player likely to be one of the future faces of the franchise , might just have to be the straw that broke the camel’s back with his petulant behavior when the Heat faced the San Antonio Spurs . In an act filled with histrionics , Whiteside felt it necessary to elbow the Spurs’ Boban Marjanovic , drawing a flagrant foul and ensuring Miami would be at a disadvantage in the game. It would be a contest where the Miami Heat would end up losing , further endangering their position within their division and conference .

Brett Brown and the Philadelphia 76ers continue struggle and as the team with the worst record in the NBA , their season has become one of dire absurdity and incompetence on so many levels. Brown’s coaching staff is bereft of coaching acumen and the players are not particularly good . While Sixers’ owner Joshua Harris has suggested it has always been his wish to see the Sixers become a competitive franchise , but everything the front office has sought to do over the last five seasons by way of the NBA Draft has been an unmitigated disaster. Former Sixers’ GM Sam Hinkie was ousted and former USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo has been brought in to become Head of Basketball Operations for the franchise , overseeing all of the player personnel decisions . Over their last ten games Philadelphia has struggled against all competition , much to the dismay of their long-suffering fans. In their last game the Philadelphia 76ers fell to the Sacramento Kings , while putting up anemic effort against their Western Conference opponent .

George Karl might well feel embattled, given the poor record of the Sacramento Kings as of late. Karl met Kings’ GM Vlade Divac to discuss the merits of the team and I am likely to believe his own long-term future. Calmer heads prevailed , with Divac placing his faith in the veteran head coach. DeMarcus Cousins , Rajon Rondo and Rudy Gay are considered the three best players on the Kings’ roster , which is centered around youth with some veteran experience. Cousins might well be the best big man in the game far outstripping the talents of centers and forwards such as Dwight Howard , Dirk Nowitzki , Paul Millsap , Greg Monroe , Kenneth Faried , LaMarcus Aldridge , Marc Gasol , Andre Drummond , Nikola Vucevic , Pau Gasol and Kevin Love . What definitely hasn’t been a boon for the Sacramento Kings has been the fact, the team has one of the smallest margin ratios (+/-) determining victories , while also having the propensity on defense for allowing triple-digits in defeat. Something which doesn’t bode well for the Kings over the remainder of the season .

After the All Star Break , George Karl will have the Sacramento Kings prepare for their next game , where their scheduled opponent will be the Denver Nuggets , as the two Western Conference teams seek to make their regular season series a competitive one ,as evidenced by last season’s contests between the pairing.

If the rumors are to be believed , which in part I do doubt , then the thought of GM Daryl Morey of the Houston Rockets now seeking to trade Dwight Howard , seems to make about as much sense as their acquiring the center to begin with. Howard’s game has been on the decline and the last three years have proven to be the case. He is no longer a dominant defensive player and if nothing else he is not even capable of being a facilitator much less a great defensive presence. Long gone are the days where Dwight Howard was a force to be reckoned with. He cannot be considered one of the best centers in the NBA and he has offered very little to the Houston Rockets since being acquired by the franchise. The Rockets remain James Harden’s at will and it is his team , but unfortunately, the role players around him as a supporting cast are nowhere to be seen.

If there are parties with a vested interest in acquiring Dwight Howard and taking on the remainder of his salary for this season, then those might be the teams who are now sitting on the cusp of a playoff berth or seeking to add some offense to their respective lineups. Far be it for me to suggest, but I believe the window of opportunity for Houston to win an NBA title are very remote. Against their conference opponents this season the Houston Rocket are barely an afterthought . A mere half-game behind the eighth placed Utah Jazz , if James Harden is able to lead this team into the NBA Playoffs , there is no denying they will make a quick first round exit either at the hands of the Golden State Warriors or the San Antonio Spurs.

Steve Kerr has returned to take command of the team his lead assistant Luke Walton coached so admirably during his absence. It would be remiss to suggest the Golden State Warriors haven’t torched their opponents all season long , on their way to the best record in the league . Questions are now being asked is this team better than the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls which went on to win the NBA title that season in astounding fashion? Seventy-two wins and only ten losses provided the NBA with the best regular season record in league history. Kerr was a part of the team in question and now he’s seeking to have this current Warriors’ team look to obliterate that mark.

The scary thought concerning the Golden State Warriors, is how good they are, but also the fact, they now seem to be a much better team than they were last season . There can be no denying, they swept through their conference with ease during the postseason and during the NBA Finals of last season, they completely outplayed the Cleveland Cavaliers and defeated them with utmost ease. The one-two-three combination punch of Step Curry , Klay Thompson and Draymond Green make the Warriors a formidable opponent for any team in the NBA . This is borne out by the fact they enter into the Pre-All Star Break with the best record in the league.

The NBA continues to be concerned with image, yet their main priority , remains profits above all other issues , but yet when the players’ behavior drags that image down its hierarchy , owners and union appears to be bereft of intelligence and a sense moral outrage or for that matter, duty. It took years of self-indulgent and totally abhorrent behavior before David Stern actually got off his fat ass to do anything about Donald Sterling and his racially inflammatory remarks and if that were not enough , we still have an aging homophobic octogenarian , Rich DeVos showing totally indignance towards the LGBT demographic , while idiot fans try and point to his philanthropic efforts within the greater Orlando area. Perception can create a myth about an individual, but nothing explains a person more than their words or deeds.

In the case of Rich DeVos , it has been more about his words and then those around jumping to his support by suggesting his statements are misconstrued. Pretty much sums up the whole political arena as well and the shit-loads of buffoonery , one tends to see when they talk about political correctness. but never seem to throw in terms such as common decency or etiquette . Then again, this is the country where idiot politicians are not exactly held to a high standard to begin with and both sides of the political continue with their buffoonery . Caught in the middle of it all , are the hierarchies within professional sports and collegiate athletics and their self-absorbed stupidity and lack of indignation.

David Stern has been nothing more than a bloviate ass , while Commissioner and his hand-picked successor Adam Silver has shown no sign in changing course. Silver has sat back , said and done nothing concerning the recent tactless behavior of Blake Griffin , the Los Angeles Clippers’ forward when it is within his power to do so. Granted, it has also taken a while for the Clippers’ organization itself to even issue a statement concerning the player’s altercation with another employee in a public place. While Blake Griffin’s apologetic tweet on social media might have showed contrition , in reality was a well-managed and orchestrated response in part thought up by his agent and done in conjunction with the Clippers. It has not lessen the blow and it certainly has not lessened the continued low image the league now has with the fans when it comes to the conduct of the players. It would not be so bad were it not for the fact the NBPA (union) remains in denial and where its leadership has done little to suggest they are dealing with such issues.

The only issue where all parties now and will forever agree upon , is seeking to increase the profits of the league at the expense of actual decency. Their rather hypocritical and self-indulgent PSA ( public service announcement) take on gun violence was insulting , as it was mismanaged and about as thought-provoking as watching paint dry . The NBA hierarchy , players and owners are completely out of touch with reality , as are many of the fans , when it comes to social issues. In part this is due to their ambivalence , stupidity , lack of intelligence and their willingness to be led by taking in the information provided them by the media (print, radio and television) .

What do you expect to see during the All Star Game weekend break ? Do you also believe the Golden State Warriors have a very good chance of breaking the regular season record of 72-10 achieved by the Chicago Bulls ?

Tophatal …. 02/12/2016

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