Don’t Blame The Messenger It’s In The Written Word ………. As In The Contract !

Don’t Blame The Messenger It’s In The Written Word ………. As In The Contract !

I am always perturbed when I see a segue piece or what is alleged to be an in depth story on an individual that is being done to not only shed light on their personality but also their life . Clearly within an election cycle we tend to see that and certainly that is now the case with the candidates of the GOP (Republican Party) seeking to challenge the Presidential incumbent next November (2012) . Say what you will about the likes of Rick Santorum , Mitt Romney , Herman Cain , Michelle Bachmann and Rick Perry as they all have their foibles and no doubt dark secrets . Well last night that well respected CBS News magazine program “60 Minutes” did their own piece , on none other than NFL uber sports agent Drew Rosenhaus . The self aggrandizing agent whose belief in his powers and the fact were it not for him the NFL would not be what it is today . And in some respects he is indeed right , because were it not for his snake oil salesman persona and the damn stupidity show by the various general managers and franchise owners around the league _____ the NFL , perhaps , it would be a much better concern in terms of its business practices when it comes to the compensation paid to the players .

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Slide show for your perusal .

The interview with Rosenhaus was conducted by CBS news anchor Scott Pelley who was respectful to his subject while not looking to always to defer to Drew’s ego. But hardly a moment didn’t go by when the agent simply didn’t go into a diatribe as to what he has brought to the NFL in terms of integrity , his caring about his clients amongst whom that includes Chad Ochocinco , Ed Reed , Terrelle Pryor , LeSean McCoy , Plaxico Burress and Rex Grossman . So widespread is the clientele list of the agent that he has a player on every team in the NFL . But that only represents half the story as it was being portrayed in this segment as the segue would tell us about Rosenhaus wanting to be a sports agent at the early age of eight years old . His childhood was one filled with his being bullied wherein his father would subsequently enroll him into a martial arts school (dojo) where he took up the art of taekwondo . Now a black belt in the practice we would also get to see Drew Rosenhaus display his prowess for Pelley and the camera as he broke eight bricks which had been set on fire to make the act far more dramatic . No mean feat if you are an actual accomplished martial arts practitioner.

Courtesy of USA Today …

Rosenhaus clarifies ’60 Minutes’ comments

By Reid Cherner , USA Today

NFL agent Drew Rosenhaus took to Twitter this morning to clarify comments he made on “60 Minutes” that made it seem liked the league revolved around him.

“I really believe that the NFL would fall apart without me,” Rosenhaus told CBS’ Scott Pelley. “That may sound cocky, that may sound arrogant, but I am telling you the truth.”

Today he tweeted:

I want to clarify a comment from 60 Minutes. I believe the NFL would fall apart without the contributions of the sports agent profession.

That was followed by:

Agents as a whole play an important role in the infrastructure of the NFL. Agents help to keep the business of the NFL running smoothly

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Now as many of the you know the Cameron Crowe movie “Jerry Maguire” starring Tom Cruise is said to be in part based on the persona of Drew Rosenhaus . But while the movie in the ends is meant to be a soul searching endeavor, moral epiphany and journey for the protagonist , with an act of redemption and learning that one’s integrity and loyalty means something between agent client. Rosenhaus would have us believe that while flattered by the portrayal , his life is one of doing what’s best for his client at all times . If only reality and art were said to meet at an access point upon which the whole world could base that in truth . But that definitely is not the case as it concerns the agent. Rosenhaus paints a canvas that has him being constantly on the phone being at the beck and call of his clients searching for the best deals , being privee to the inner workings a number of franchises and being on a first name basis with the likes of Jerry Jones , Ozzie Newsome , Howie Roseman , and Jeff Ireland .

Now while having such access gives Rosenhaus the inside track on team deliberations and their personnel needs , it also has alienated the agent amongst many of those NFL sports agents within his profession who make the NFL their field of practice . It wasn’t at all a surprise to find out that Drew Rosenhaus and at least several of his company associates in his employ have had grievances filed against them with the NFLPA that he has actually stolen players who were said to be clients under contract with another agent . However , what may well have been even more unimaginable was that in each and every one of those cases at no time did the NFLPA feel that it warranted any action on their part . And even the league hierarchy itself , has often cited the actions of the agents at times bordering on being corrupt it seems almost incomprehensible to believe that with as many 50 such grievance filings not one of those actually was found to be suspect on the part that Rosenhaus or any of those said to be in his employment had in fact acted surreptitiously.

Drew Rosenhaus a graduate of Duke University with law degree , but he chose to become an agent in the NFL signing his first client at the age of 22 , thereby becoming the league’s youngest agent . Today he has some 170 plus players amongst his clients within the NFL representing their interests either from a legal or commercial standpoint . During this past off season while the NFL lockout was in place he made sure that he was front and center making himself heard wherever possible proffering up his own views why there was such a divergent stance between the NFL and union . If there is one thing that we have to know and realize about Drew Roshenhaus it is that he is a consummate businessman and spin-meister extraordinaire . With the league mandated stoppage coming to a close this past off season the agent was able to negotiate new contracts for 75 clients that netted some $675 million of which his commission would be 3% as mandated by the union . However , it is in the area of commercial endorsements where Rosenhaus and his staff can net even more in commissions and fees by way of any commercial sponsorship gained by many of his high profiled clients .

Now while I am not about to suggest that Drew Rosenhaus has not made his fair share of enemies within his own fraternity of fellow agents , most certainly amongst the NFL owners league hierarchy and definitely amongst the fans. The area I now feel his actions are dubious and not above reproach has to be his dealings at the collegiate level where it is obviously his most accessible and fertile ground for hiring a prospective future client. Clearly with calls being made by college football coaches such as Nick Saban , Bob Stoops , Gene Chizik , Steve Spurrier , Mack Brown and even such elder statesmen coaches as Joe Paterno and Frank Beamer calling for the actions of the agents to be kept in check with regard to their access to college and high school recruits . My question would be for the coaches in question as well Mark Emmert and the NCAA …… what actions if any do they undertake to stop these coaches from approaching these student athletes while either in high school or college ? There at present is no clear mandate or form of punishment meted out to an agent .

With the fallout that has taken place on the campus of the University of Miami and the improprieties of several current and former Canes’ football players and their connections to now disgraced financier Nevin Shapiro . The former Canes’ booster now incarcerated and has been all too public in naming names of the players he has given gifts and monies to , all in contravention of NCAA rules . University of Miami President Donna Shalala and school AD Shawn Eichorst have tried to distance themselves and the school from the actions of Nevin Shapiro. But herein lies the caveat , Shapiro throughout the years of his association with the school was granted unprecedented access not just to student athletes but also senior faculty members of the school during which he is said to be not only profiting from this association but also defrauding members of the public up and down the Eastern seaboard in a Ponzi Scheme that netted some $930 million fraudulently .

Obviously at first not worried by this access granted , it is the very same distinction that has also been granted to Drew Rosenhaus over the years , as he has made the campus of the university one of his many stomping grounds where he gains access to future recruits and clients . He already has the largest clientele of any NFL agent in the league and this continues unabated. Quite frankly , during the interview between Scott Pelley and his subject , I was surprised that this point was not at all raised but there again , when one now thinks of the alleged research and journalistic integrity that is placed in a segment that takes up perhaps no more than fifteen minutes of an hour long news formatted program , there are bound to be certain issues that won’t be brought to the fore by either side and then the whole content matter comes across as a sanitized puff piece for the public’s consumption.

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Picture gallery for your perusal.

As a fan of the NFL do you genuinely feel that the sports’ agents play a part in how the NFL’s image is heightened or lowered in perception ? And as such , do you believe that the NCAA and NFL should act in conjunction in reprimanding an agent when they may well have acted in contravention of their own mandated rules and regulations ? Simply state your case for or against any such action and on anything else you may feel is pertinent to the subject matter concerning this piece .

Alan aka tophatal ………

https://tophatal.wordpress.com

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Picture and slide show details below .

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(1) Rosenhaus seen here with Washington Redskins ILB London Fletcher , one of the 170 plus clients that he currently serves in the NFL . Courtesy of “60 Minutes” & CBS News @ copyrighted material .

(2) CBS News evening anchor Scott Pelley who succeeded Katie Couric in that current role and who is also a co-host of the broadcast network’s long tenured news magazine program “60 Minutes” staple on the network for over three decades. Courtesy of HuffingtonPost.com/ Archives ………

(3) University of Miami President Donna Shalala is seen here alongside Nevin Shapiro (center) having been just been presented with a check by the former Canes’ booster for the sum of $35,000. Shapiro was given unprecedented access to players current and former players of the school’s football team. And even in light of the ongoing allegations the school’s president and AD Shawn Eichorst tried to distance themselves from the controversy. Al Golden the football coach of the team has suggested that the issues will be addressed and a much more strenuous compliance of NCAA rules will be put in place . Miami Herald / Oscar Nunez ……

(4) Agent Drew Rosenhaus talks with Terrelle Pryor during his pro day at a practice facility on August 20, 2011 in Hempfield Township, Pennsylvania. Getty Images North America / Jared Wickerham ……….

(5) Agent Drew Rosenhaus talks with Steve Smith 89 of the Carolina Panthers before an NFL game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on August 19, 2011 in Miami Gardens, Florida. Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images ……

(5) …….
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Questions I’ve No Wish To Be Answered But Yet They Remain Within The Public Domain So Does Anyone Have An Answer ?

Questions I’ve No Wish To Be Answered But Yet They Remain Within The Public Domain So Does Anyone Have An Answer ?

Well inter-league play is now front and center within MLB and though the purists may well be dead set against the idea here it now is. Personally from my own standpoint I see it as a chance for teams within the AL and NL a chance to play each other and for many of the fans to see their heroes up close and personal. Though I’m not an overly admirer of this format until the World Series as I alluded to , it does give the fans a chance to see their favorite players .

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Slide show perusal for your perusal .

As the season progresses I know that we’re bound to see the teams at their very best and at their worst. But you can be sure that won’t last long as the season heats up and reaches its halfway point by late July . By then a number of the divisions should be taking shape albeit that there still will be a great deal to play for . I’m not about to make any quick announcements as to what I think will happen other than to suggest that the teams playing the best baseball should actually be stepping up to the plate and making their present felt and their class known .

Well over the weekend several of the top NFL’s rookies gathered on the campus of UCLA Berkley for a charity event . Amongst those attending were Cam Newton , Von Miller , Blaine Gabbert and Andy Dalton to name but a few . Many of the players in question suggested that in spite of the league lockout they were happy to be part of the fraternity but their biggest disappointment was not being able to participate in any drills amongst their new teams or at their respective training facilities. In the midst of this all the NFL hierarchy , team owners and the NFLPA , there still remains a chasm as to their differences . Meanwhile the lockout still remains in place after being upheld by the 8th District Appellate Court . The New Orleans Saints’ Drew Brees in an interview granted to ESPN’s Ed Werder during which he stated that the reason why he was a willing participant in a civil suit against the NFL wherein he , Tom Brady and Peyton Manning had all signed on to challenge the league’s antitrust status . One of the points that Brees brought up during this interview was the very fact the players are doing this mainly to represent the veteran players that have retired and the very fact that they have been inadequately assisted by the NFL . If anything this might well have been one of the most pertinent points raised in this whole unsavory episode . Because to my mind it certainly hasn’t been only the NFL that has failed the retired players but also the very union who say that they represent those players’ interests. Certainly neither Gene Upshaw or his successor DeMaurice Smith of the NFLPA have spoken publicly of their wish in obtaining better benefits for their members, in particular the retired veterans . But such has been the idiocy of this lockout and the very fact that the two sides seem to so far apart in trying to reach an accord as it firmly remains about money and how best to split a $9 billion piece of pie .

Well the daggers are now out for seven time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong as the Justice Department seeks testimony and evidence that would indict the former champion of using performance enhancing drugs (PED’s). Such has been the absurdity of this whole spectacle where we have seen former champion Alberto Contador have his own suspension lifted after positive test which he asserts was due to having ate tainted meat at a restaurant . In light of this all I find it rather asinine that the Tour organizers L’Equipe and the sport’s governing body UCI have yet to reach an accord where there is in fact a really comprehensive drug testing policy. The IOC which oversees the Olympic Games has a part to play in this all but they appear to be taking a hands off approach as WADA and UCI try to make the best of a bad situation by trying to get the appropriate testing protocols in place that is universally recognized.

Much of Armstrong’s problems will now manifest itself even more so with the allegations now being made by former teammates of Lance Armstrong as Tyler Hamilton has stated that he repeatedly saw the former champion inject himself with steroids and other illicit PED’S . In an interview conducted by CBS’s Scott Pelley for their magazine news program ’60 Minutes’ , Hamilton emphasizes that Lance Armstrong was a frequent user of PED’s throughout much of his career , especially during the run-up to the Tour de France. Now it’d be naive to even suggest that Armstrong might not be guilty of anything but at the same time one certainly would have doubts . The other teammate of Armstrong who also has also given testimony to the Justice Department is George Hincapie . OK , so Lance Armstrong has never tested positive while in competition or during the cycling off season but yet the allegations appear and reappear with even more frequency as time goes by . Now while Hamilton has given his sworn testimony to the Justice Department the question I would ask is what does he actually gain from all of this ? He would be an idiot to perjure himself at this juncture knowing full well that lying would mean a jail sentence in a Federal penitentiary . But at this juncture until an indictment is handed down all one can do is merely speculate on the matter . 60 Minutes who tried to get in contact with Armstrong and his legal representatives seeking a statement from the beleaguered cyclist were not met with a response of any kind. However , Armstrong has always maintained his innocence in any wrong doing on his part. For someone who was so beloved after his heroics and the fact that he overcame testicular cancer it would appear that his days now seem to be numbered as he looks keep his legacy and integrity in tact.

The vultures are now hovering and it appears that they are looking gorge themselves on the carcass of Lance Armstrong . Witch hunt or not , this might be one of the most unsavory moments in recent l history as it relates to the sport of cycling, especially as to its relevance here in North America , where Armstrong is still very much seen as the face of the sport.

As the NBA postseason takes shape with the conference finals I can’t help but wonder how the fans now view things as they begin to play themselves out ? The Eastrn Conference Finals have worked out well as the top two seeds meet for the right to represent to the conference in the NBA Finals . The Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat so far , have given us an exhilarating two games wherein the series is now tied at 1-1 . And for both coaches Tom Thibodeau and Erik Spoelstra are on the cusp of leading their respective teams to what will their first appearance in the league’s showcase event as coaches. It is extremely hard to believe that other than Phil Jackson , Gregg Popovich and Doc Rivers there are no other active coaches in the league that have won an NBA title . But such has been the dominance of that triumvirate as coaches within the NBA that it easy to understand the reasons why they have had the success that they have attained. They are the consummate individuals within their fraternity and have the respect of their peers and their players no less.

The stars on both teams have shone as this series has progressed and it may well take one of those stars to raise their game to another level if their team is to succeed. For league MVP —- Derrick Rose this has been an outstanding season as he has vindicated himself to many by showing why he has been so successful as a player and a leader of this Bulls’ team . With the series now resuming this upcoming Sunday at the AA Arena in Miami , one should expect an explosive and raucous atmosphere in that arena as the Heat’s Dwyane Wade , LeBron James , Chris Bosh and the rest of this roster showcase their skills as they seek to take a lead in the series.

All evidence would point to the fact that should the Heat take game three then they would be viewed as being in the driver’s seat and expected to perhaps look to close out this series . At this juncture I would say that nothing is off the table because this season’s playoffs while exciting , have also been full of a number of surprises as we’ve seen both the San Antonio Spurs and the reigning two time defending champions the Los Angeles Lakers being summarily embarrassed by their respective opponents in the earlier rounds .

In the Western Conference Finals the Dallas Mavericks and Oklahoma City Thunder look to up the ante in their series as they each look to regain the upper hand in their series . Dirk Nowitzki after his dominant performance in game one with an emphatic 48 point offensive output in the Mavericks’ 121-112 defeat of the Thunder . This series has see-sawed up and down because of the over powering offensive display of both teams . At the same time I look at the situation where it would appear that defense appears to the last thing on the mind of either team. For both Scott Brooks and Rick Carlisle this is something that has to be remedied if either team is to prevail in the series outright .

Game three resumes in Oklahoma City this Saturday with the series tied at one game apiece . In tying the series the Thunder knew that taking a game at American Airlines Center in Dallas this series is now up for grabs . Much of the post-game scenario played around the benching of Russell Westbrook by Scott Brooks for the entire fourth quarter of the game. Inconsistency or not Westbrook is uniquely aware that he’s not the leader of this Thunder team as that right belongs to the two time league scoring champion Kevin Durant . Westbrook must know that if the Oklahoma City Thunder is to be successful then he will have to defer to Durant as and when necessary . Any other alternative will ultimately lead to the team’s demise and a chance of making their first appearance in the NBA Finals as the NBA’s youngest franchise .

As this NBA postseason unfolds it will be interesting what drama now awaits the participants left the respective series .

After what appeared to be an enthralling bout a rematch was made between former light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins and the reigning champion Jean Pascal of Canada. In their first dramatic fight that ended in a highly contested draw , the animosity between the two antagonists actually grew. What is now undeniable is the that Hopkins seeks to further cement his legacy in becoming the oldest world champion in boxing history. The former champion is 46 years old and some eighteen years the senior of his opponent. Their title bout will take place in Montreal this upcoming Saturday (10:00 pm EST) and will be televised by HBO .

Though the state of boxing has now become mundane and pedantic , Hopkins and Manny Pacquiao remain perhaps the two biggest draw in the sport. Unfortunately however , once these two legends of the sport retire boxing will become bereft of real talent and characters that the fans can actually identify with. Pascal for his part knows that if he actually beats Hopkins his ascent up the ranks will only gain him more exposure and greater financial reward. It seems strange at the age of five Pascal he probably wouldn’t have been aware that his opponent would be making his professional debut in the sport. That being said when these two meet again at the Bell Centre , Montreal , it won’t be about Pascal showing any deference to his more experienced foe and it will certainly be vice- versa with Bernard Hopkins. The former champion felt he was cheated out of the decision on the champion’s home turf in their first outing and for that, he expects to right a wrong . And as impressive as Pascal’s 26-1-1 (16KO’s) record might appear to be the quality of opponents he has met over the course of his career pales into comparison when adjudged against that of Hopkins’ and multi-divisional championship record (51-5-1 [32 KO’s])would and resume’ would indicate.

This rematch has the makings of being an instant classic given what is on the line for both fighters. And I think that there is a distinct possibility that the challenger may well walk away with the title belt as he feels that he has something to prove . Certainly Pascal being the much younger fighter knows that he can ill afford to take Hopkins lightly as he had done in their first meeting. And if anything he was extremely lucky to have retained his title with that favorable decision of a draw by the judges . This time around there may well not be a need for the judges to actually give a verdict as this bout may well be decided by knockout . Either way this could be a fight that will dictate the careers of both fighters and the directions that they may well be heading in .

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What opinions might you have as to the topics raised within this piece ? Simply leave a comment as to your thoughts as you deem fit and anything else you may well feel pertinent .

Alan aka tophatal ………………..

https://tophatal.wordpress.com

Picture and slide show details below .

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(1) Atlanta Braves’ Joe Mather celebrates his one run double in the twelfth inning of an interleague baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, May 21, 2011, in Anaheim, Calif. The Braves won 5-4 . AP Photo/Gus Ruelas …..

(2) Alex Gonzalez (2) #2 of the Atlanta Braves scores a run in front of Hank Conger (16) Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim to take a 5-4 lead during the 12th inning at Angel Stadium on May 21, 2011 in Anaheim, California. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images …..

(3) MINNEAPOLIS, MN – MAY 17: Former NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith (second from left), NFL retired players’ lawyer Michael Hausfeld and NFL players’ lawyer Jeffrey Kessler arrive for court ordered mediation at the U.S. Courthouse on May 17, 2011 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. As the NFL lockout remains in place mediation was ordered after a hearing on an antitrust lawsuit filed by NFL players against the NFL owners after labor talks between the two broke down in March. Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images ……

(4) Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck (8) of the Seattle Seahawks converses with quarterback Drew Brees (9) of the New Orleans Saints after the Saints 34-19 win at Louisiana Superdome on November 21, 2010 in New Orleans, Louisiana. ….

(5) Cyclist Lance Armstrong holds a press conference during Day 1 of the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting on September 24, 2008 in New York City. Armstrong was speaking on his return to competitive cycling and the work of the Lance Armstrong Foundation in conjunction with the Clinton Global Initiative to fight cancer.2008 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting – Day 1New York, NY United StatesSeptember 24, 2008 . Photo by Jemal Countess/WireImage.com @ copyrighted material all rights reserved ……

(6) Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden (13) goes up for a shot attempt as Dallas Mavericks’ Dirk Nowitzki of Germany, right, and DeShawn Stevenson, bottom left, defend in the second half of Game 3 of the NBA Western Conference finals basketball series Saturday, May 21, 2011, in Oklahoma City. The Mavericks won 93-87 . AP Photo/Larry W. Smith ….

(7) Dirk Nowitzki (41) of the Dallas Mavericks reacts in the fourth quarter while taking on the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game Three of the Western Conference Finals during the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Oklahoma City Arena on May 21, 2011 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Getty Images / Christian Petersen …….

(8) Bernard Hopkins of US shows his tongue after a hit by Jean Pascal of Canada during their light heavyweight championship fight for the WBC light heavyweight championship, on May 21, 2011, at Bell Centre, Montreal in Quebec, Canada. Ring veteran Bernard Hopkins beat Jean Pascal by decision in a World Boxing Council light heavyweight bout to become the oldest major world champion in boxing history at 46 years old. Hopkins came on strong in the middle rounds and hung on in the 12th against the hard-hitting Canadian Pascal to get the decision in front of a crowd of 17,750 at the Bell Centre arena May 21, 2011. Hopkins won a unanimous decision against Pascal in an entertaining rematch of their December 18 draw in Quebec City, Canada. TOPSHOTS AFP PHOTO/GETTY IMAGES/ ROGERIO BARBOSA …….

(9) Bernard Hopkins misses a punch on Jean Pascal during the WBC Light-Heavyweight Championship fight between Bernard Hopkins and Jean Pascal at the Bell Centre on May 22, 2011 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images …….

(10) MONTREAL, CANADA – MAY 21: Bernard Hopkins punches Jean Pascal during the WBC Light-Heavyweight Championship fight between Bernard Hopkins and Jean Pascal at the Bell Centre on May 22, 2011 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images ….

(11) Both Bernard Hopkins and Jean Pascal raise their hands in victory after twelve rounds of action during the WBC Light-Heavyweight Championship fight between Bernard Hopkins and Jean Pascal at the Bell Centre on May 22, 2011 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The challenger would defeat his younger adversary in obtaining a unanimous verdict from all there judges . In winning the light heavyweight title Bernard Hopkins became the oldest world title holder in boxing history at the age of 46. Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images ….

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