Westbrook and KD Broke Up… and It’s SOOOO Cliché

12-1-16

Well, KD was seeing other teams on the side and then West found out about it but just pretended like he didn’t because he wasn’t threatened by the thought of Kev leaving. 

Why would he? You know? 

Kev had a GOOD thing going in Oklahoma City with the Thunder, (the franchise that drafted him by the way). 

He could do no wrong, they always put the blame on other people when the Thunder came up short, like Russell (Westbrook). (1). The one time he did get called out for a failure he bitched about it to the point that the people who published felt guilty for doing so. (2). Then, all of a sudden this new young thing, Golden State, comes along and flirts with Kev and guess what that skinny Son of a Real MVP (3) does next? Despite all the love OKC and Westbrook have given him after eight years of being together? (4) HE UP AND LEAVES FOR HOPES OF GETTING THAT RING! WHAT AN ASS, RIGHT?

The story was the NBA hot-gossip-topic of a drama filled NBA summer/off-season, eclipsing ridiculous contract numbers (including KD’s), USA Men’s Olympic involvements and ESPY Award PSAs. The gossip came in all types of takes from, “will they or won’t they have salt towards each other now” to the question of, “who will do better? Will Russ prove he was a better commodity than we gave credit for? Will KD mesh with Golden State and actually win? Who ends out the better of the break-up?”

NBA podcasts felt more like reaction shows to drama series’ recorded with talking head clips that airs weekly on MTV! Giving off a very drama-queen cibe to very business based league of the NBA. Now, we’re seeing the early results from the baller break-up of the summer and both players are acting predictably.

See, Kev and Russ are both putting on this front that the break-up was mutual and that it was for the better of both of them; as if they’re both better off! (5) (Don’t get me wrong, obviously they needed some time away from each other to see where they were at. They’re relationship was like that couple that acts like everything’s good while they’re together but they have holes in the walls of their home. 

Now, West is pretending like he isn’t even mad that KD just left him and down playing the success he has with the Warriors. (6) BUT WE ALL KNOW WHAT’S REALLY GOING ON! Russ is acting like the typical teenage guy who gets his heart broken so he goes out and hooks-up with everything that walks to prove he doesn’t need his ex, showing what a stud he is to prove his worth. Since the season began Westbrook’s averages stand at 31.2 points, 10.5 rebounds and 11.3 assists through 20 games. (7)

Just like your typical over-testosterone teen guy, Russ is skirt chasing every net in the NBA without the the ball and chain of Durant weighing him down. But how is that effecting the other half in Kevin Durant?

Durant is pretending like he isn’t looking out the corner of his eye at Russ’s numbers and preoccupying himself with the guys that he left West for in the Warriors. It feels like what most women would do after a tough break-up when they move on from a destructive relationship. 

The Warriors and Durant had an awkward transitioning period with early season struggles but the Warriors have greatly improved their chemistry and it looks like the break-up is starting to make sense for KD. The Warriors are 16-2 and have won twelve straight. (8) Sure, there are moments where Kev is tempted to go back to West but at least that ring dream is looking to sparkle a little brighter to most. Durant seems to be adjusting to the move with a newly acquired attitude with new body art and public appearances. (9) (10)

The Westbrook-Durant break-up has been brutal on the kids (the fans) who are now living with Russ in OKC while Kev adapts to the Bay Area and grabbing the attention of the neighbors (NBA followers) because it’s just so damn familiar and played-out. When it happened both claimed it was business related and not personal but that’s not a far cry from “it’s for the best, it was mutual and no one’s to blame for it.” 

The good news is; it’s permanent! Unlike bad relationship breaks-up that ultimately end with people inevitably getting back together only to break-up again in a few months, the Westbrook and KD drama has to fizzle by way of the NBA contract. They only have to see each other for the fans/kids sake a few times a year when the Thunder visit Golden State or vice-versa. Kind of like holiday get togethers or parent teacher conferences. 

Getting too close to home for some? Let’s just let this bad relationship that was West and Kev end! 

Besides, it’s not like they have to play together anytime soon?

Ohhhh, wait… Just wait a minute!…

With Westbrook putting up historic numbers and Durant meshing well in GS, how awkward is the Western Conference’s All-Star line-up looking?

Hell, for the sake of the awkward turtle and the closure of this article; I might even tune in for that All-Star Game for once!

Sources;

  1. https://www.google.com/amp/www.cbssports.com/nba/news/russell-westbrooks-path-of-destruction-leaves-no-room-for-peace-with-durant/amp/?client=safari
  2. http://www.espn.com/nba/playoffs/2014/story/_/id/10868089/mr-unreliable-headline-daily-oklahoman-kevin-durant-oklahoma-city-thunder-causes-stir
  3. https://www.google.com/amp/kfor.com/2014/05/06/youre-the-real-mvp-durant-thanks-mom-in-emotional-speech/amp/?client=safari
  4. http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/d/duranke01.html
  5. https://www.google.com/amp/thebiglead.com/2016/07/19/kevin-durant-claims-he-didnt-leave-oklahoma-city-because-of-russell-westbrook/amp/?client=safari
  6. https://www.google.com/amp/ftw.usatoday.com/2016/10/russell-westbrook-kevin-durant-oklahoma-city-thunder-golden-city-warriors-selfish-feud-video/amp?client=safari
  7. http://www.foxsports.com/nba/story/russell-westbrook-triple-double-average-streak-oklahoma-city-thunder-oscar-robertson-rebounds-nba-history-120116
  8. https://www.google.com/search?q=golden+state+warriors+schedule&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en-us&client=safari#sie=t;/m/0jmj7;3;/m/05jvx;dt;fp
  9. http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/17459483/golden-state-warriors-star-kevin-durant-apparently-new-tattoo-rick-james-thigh
  10. https://www.google.com/amp/www.foxsports.com/nba/story/kevin-durant-enjoys-his-night-off-by-entering-mosh-pit-at-kanye-west-concert-102416.amp.html?client=safari
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Over-Dose-Reaction; Week 5. *No Surprises*

10-11-2016

**No Surprise Week!: Sorry over-reactors… This week was not for you! The week five trey of games presented almost no surprises and while some may try to make you believe otherwise the Lloyd-rage O-D-R is here to help tighten your football helmets and provide that cushion from over-reaction brain trauma. Rest assured, week five was about as according to plan as it should have been here’s the explanations as to why.

–THURSDAY–

Arizona Cardinals 33, San Francisco 49ers 21

Does it really surprise anyone that another Thursday Night Football game example of retina torture? Blaine Gabbert and the ‘9ers vs Drew Stanton and the Cards. Frankly, I would rather have seen this quarterback match up five years ago when these guys QB’d Mizzou and Michigan State. Maybe at that level either tosser would have thrown for more than 200 yards. Between the two only 286 passing yards were produced with 162 going to Gabbert. In the end, it was Arizona’s better roster that won out the QB drool duel. This out come was about as surprising as Collin Kaepernick finding a way to steal head lines despite still kneeling the bench as a backup.

–SUNDAY–

New England Patriots 33, Cleveland Browns 13

Does it really surprise anyone that Tom Brady’s comeback when flawlessly for the future Hall of Famer? Does it surprise anyone that the footnote of the Brady-back game came at the expense of Cleveland? Does it surprise anyone that we can forget all about the Garoppolo take-over talk? No? Okay, moving on.

Detroit Lions 24, Philadelphia Eagles 23

It should not surprise anyone that the Eagles regressed Sunday and suffered their first loss of the season. Why? Because as good as Carson Wentz has proven to be, it doesn’t change the fact that sometimes it’s hard to kick-start a team coming off a bye week, especially on the road. The Lions aren’t awful, their just not efficient; that reputation leads to a label that they’ll carry on through the year — Sleeper Team. No real surprise in the Lion win.

Indianapolis Colts 29, Chicago Bears 23

Adam Vinatieri is immortal! Is that surprising? No! I’d it surprising that Andrew Luck drove his 16th game-winning drive of his five year career? No! (1) Is it surprising that the Bears Jordan Howard (16 carries for 118, three catches for 45 yards and a touchdown (2)) had a pro-bowl day against the saloon-door Colts D, again? Meh, not really. The dysfunctional Colts squeaked out a win over the dysfunctional Bears. The only surprise to this game was the elixir Vinatieri seems to have running through his veins (5/5 field goals, longest 54(3))?

Buffalo Bills 30, Los Angeles Rams 19

Why does it surprise anyone that a team that calls home in LA would struggle in northern New York? The Bills were at a major advantage of playing at home against the Rams who are destined to go 8-8 by reputation, who by the way are now 3-2. With the time difference playing such a big factor this was a no surprise out come Sunday.

Tennessee Titans 30, Miami Dolphins 17

Does it surprise anyone that Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins is a recipe for disaster? Does it surprise anyone that Marcus Mariota was able to counter off of of Demarco Murray’s +100 yard performance (121 yards off 27 carries) (4) to help him run for a touchdown and throw for three? Tannehill was sacked six times Sunday in the Miami loss and his only hand-up came in the form of “BOO’S” from the MIA crowd. No surprise that Tannehill has under-performed again or that the Titans were actually able to move the ball efficiently once their run-game got going, making for a predictable final verdict.

Washington Redskins 16, Baltimore Ravens 10

To this point in 2016 the Raven’s margin of score differential is five points. Their having a nail-biting season where they either linger with the team they trail or let the team their playing longer too long. So, Baltimore’s slim loss the Redskins is fitting considering their struggle to close. It want so much that the Redskins held out for the win as much as the result was settled by the Ravens typically lingering behind too long.

Minnesota Vikings 31, Houston Texans 13

(Known coming into the game) No J.J. Watt for the Texans. (5) Stout defense in the Vikings; sixth best in the league. (6). So, reduced defense for Houston with an expected struggle week for the Brock Osweiler led offense vs. the Vike’s D. So where’s the surprise in the Minnie 18 point victory? EXACTLY!

Pittsburgh 31, New York Jets 13

If anything was a surprise i the result of the Steelers vs. the Jets Sunday afternoon it was that Ryan Fitzpatrick landed a goose egg in the INT column of the box score. Fitz’ struggles have become a highlighted eyesore in recent weeks (nine in two weeks prior(7)), so to see the IVY league product stay out of the blame position for a week was a nice change of pace. Still, the AFC contest went as expected with the Jets being on the road against a believed superior opponent, falling behind early and not being able to keep up with Ben Roethlisberger and the Steeler’s unbending offense.

Atlanta Falcons 23, Denver Broncos 16

Although Denver was probably due for a loss, entering week five 4-0 with a tandem of rookie quarterbacks running things, it’s still surprising that of all people it was to the Falcons who traditionally aren’t road warriors. The Falcs tend to struggle outside the ATL, while the Broncos tend to thrive at home, however it was Tevin Coleman and the visitors who made themselves comfortable Sunday at Mile High stadium. Coleman used just four catches to mount 132 yards and a touchdown in the win for the NFC Southers. (8) Along with Atlanta’s surprising win is Coleman’s ability to perform considering while he battled the Denver conditions with his noted sickle cell troubles. (9)

Dallas Cowboys 28, Cincinnati Bengals 14

How can one be surprised by this out come? Given the Cowboys offensive line it was Ezekiel Elliot who had the shining star day in Dallas over rookie QB Dak Prescott. Elliot had 134 yards from 15 carries with two touchdowns, while Prescott went efficiently 18 for 24 passing with 1 TD and 224 yards. (11) The name’s associated with the headlines will favor a shocker of a result, with the two rookies but with the Cowboys offensive line Bartolo Colon could gallop for +100 yards on NFL defenses! The major letdown was Andy Dalton and the absent for three quarters offense of Cincinnati with the only off-the-norm tendency to this inner-conference match-up. The Bengals couldn’t put things together when they had the pigskin against a Cowboy D that is missing more names than a community college class check-in sheet. The Bengals need to be worried as they fall to 2-3 of losing grip of their season.

Oakland Raiders 34, San Diego Chargers 31

What a surprise, Phillip Rivers kept the Chargers in a game long enough for someone not named Phillip Rivers to blow it for them. After working an offensive scheme for the Chargers to put them in 36-yard field goal range for the tie, rookie Drew Kaser couldn’t fumbled ultimately costing SD. (12) The close score shouldn’t be a shocker either as this is a divisional contest featuring rivaled teams that know each other well. Add in a more mixed crowd due to geographical availability and you have the making for what SHOULD be a closely contested football game. Sadly for Rivers, he had to watch familiarity take over once again with his squad as has gotten all too repetitive over the past three seasons.

Green Bay Packers 23, New York Giants 16

The Packers are now 9-1 with Mike McCarthy coming off of bye weeks. (14) They were at Lambeau Field for their contest with the Giants and The only surprise of the Sunday Night feature should have been Odell Beckham Jr. Making up with the sideline kicking net. (13) Still, people are looking for over-reactions so why not blame the guy with the most too lose; Aaron Rodgers. People are saying Rodgers looked choppy in the win over the Giants; (15). Sure Rodgers didn’t have the most successful night, believe me I have him on FFL, I know. But it’s not like Rodgers didn’t throw for two touchdowns in the Packers win. Green Bay’s defense managed to keep Eli Manning at arms reach at the end of the game and cheese-head running game of Eddie Lacy helped seal a victory. Sounds like a typical Sunday night in ‘Scansin to me!

–MONDAY–

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 17, Carolina Panthers 14

Another game of week five that has spectators turning their heads without reason is the Monday Night game that featured the Panthers and Bucs in an NFC South showdown. Did I mention who the Panther’s quarterback was? With Cam Newton out on concussion protocol the Cats of Charlotte left the pack in the arms of former Cleveland Browns starter Derek Anderson who showed why his main experience as an NFL starter has came while he resided in Cleveland. Anderson committed a bad fumble that killed one drive and threw into double coverage, forcing a pass to tight end Greg Olsen, who looked as mighty as Thor in the Monday Night Showcase. Despite Olsen’s nine catches good for 181 yards of offense, (16) Anderson’s three turnovers turned out to be too much for the Panthers to overcome as Tampa Bay and rookie kicker Roberto Aguayo sealed the victory with a last-second 38 yard field-goal to seal it. No surprises should be held in the Carolina loss, their defense played well enough to win had the Panthers had a quarterback capable of doing so. Unfortunately, Carolina learned through Derek Anderson the hard lesson that you can’t paint over Brown, no matter how bright the teal blue is.

Sources:

  1. http://www.pro-football-reference.com/leaders/gwd_active.htm
  2. http://www.espn.com/nfl/game?gameId=400874548
  3. http://m.espn.com/nfl/playercard?playerId=1097&src=desktop
  4. http://www.espn.com/nfl/game?gameId=400874581
  5. http://m.bleacherreport.com/articles/2666751-jj-watt-injury-update-star-undergoes-season-ending-back-surgery
  6. http://www.espn.com/nfl/statistics/team/_/stat/total/position/defense
  7. http://www.espn.com/nfl/player/gamelog/_/id/8664/ryan-fitzpatrick
  8. http://www.espn.com/nfl/boxscore?gameId=400874607
  9. http://www.espn.com/blog/atlanta-falcons/post/_/id/22859/tevin-coleman-with-sickle-cell-trait-unsure-about-playing-in-denver
  10. http://www.espn.com/nfl/scoreboard/_/year/2016/seasontype/2/week/5
  11. http://www.espn.com/nfl/boxscore?gameId=400874630
  12. http://www.espn.com/nfl/recap?gameId=400874636
  13. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/early-lead/wp/2016/10/10/good-news-odell-beckham-jr-and-the-kicking-net-have-made-up/
  14. http://www.foxsports.com/wisconsin/story/green-bay-packers-mike-mccarthy-aaron-rodgers-have-had-success-coming-off-bye-week-102015
  15. http://www.espn.com/nfl/recap?gameId=400874640
  16. http://www.espn.com/nfl/player/_/id/2978887

Headliners! 08-29-16

Tony Romo Injury Makes Rookie Dak Prescott QB Starter for Cowboys
Quick Reaction: We’ve all heard the saying, “Be careful what you wish for.” Now, Cowboys fans everywhere are walking prime examples of this advice due to the current Prescott/Romo dilemma. For all the on-field success shown by Dak, it has all been shown in meaningless preseason games against defenses that are all working on things. Prescott has already impressed many by having rookie success in the PRESEASON. To expect the same impression once the REGULAR season starts for Dallas in less than a fortnight is too much from the rook! It may not be so, but there is a good chance Cowboys fans will be wishing they had ol’ Tony come week two. (1)

Evan Fournier is Disappointed with his NBA 2K17 Character

Quick Reaction: Never heard of Evan Fournier? Neither have the programmers at NBA 2K apparently, nor have they seen him. Fournier’s recent fame over the summer isn’t for his five-year, $85 million contract extension but because of his disgust with the resemblance of his NBA 2K17 player. (3) Welcome back to pre-fame Fournier. As someone who has created myself many times in the virtual sports world, I think someone needs to inform Fournier that a bad video game avatar is expected and isn’t that big of a deal! Especially, when you play for a Victor Oladipo-less Magic team and the only 2K17 players that will use Orlando will have done the random team selection rule. Their gripe won’t be for the fact that Fournier’s neck-beard looks trashy in the game, it will be that their main threat on their team is the overpaid Frenchman. (2)

A Lamb Interrupts Triple A Baseball Game

Quick Reaction: We all know lower level MLB Minor League teams don’t make the biggest bucks but we didn’t know they had replaced motor mowers with live stock! It would be nice to say that what happened in Thursday night’s  game between the Batavia Muckdogs and the State College Spikes was a first. But infamously, a goat is related to the Chicago Cubs from back in 1945 that is believed to have helped generate a curse over the Cubs franchise. For the sake of safety for four-legged creatures in the future they will manage to avoid the diamond since it hasn’t served them well in the past. While Thursday’s event sparked viral hilarity, the Muckdogs better hope it doesn’t spark a 71 year (and counting) championship drought as it has for the Cubbies. (5)

Trevor Siemian Wraps Up Denver Broncos’ Quarterback Battle After Solid Performance Against Rams

Quick Reaction: It’s official, the follow up season to the Peyton Manning 2015-16 farewell ride in Denver will be led by Trevor Siemian at quarterback. Siemian is a seventh-round draft pick out of Northwestern University, the second year QB has won the Bronco’s depth chart opening over rookie Paxton Lynch and multi-year NFLer Mark Sanchez. Whether you wanted Lynch, Sanchez or Siemian to win the point-to man of the Broncos this year they all leave the opposite side of the franchise’s ball with the question many had in the previous year with a well aged Manning. Can the Broncos’ defense be enough to lead them to another successful season or did Manning have more to do with last year’s Super Bowl run then most thought or wanted to admit? (6)

Sources:

  1. http://www.sunherald.com/sports/nfl/article98541422.html
  2. http://clutchpoints.com/evan-fournier-not-happy-with-his-nba-2k17-appearance/
  3. http://www.sbnation.com/2016/7/1/11965302/evan-fournier-re-signs-with-the-orlando-magic
  4. http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/rogue-sheep-goes-streaking-at-minor-league-baseball-game-082616
  5. http://www.history.com/news/how-a-billy-goat-cursed-the-chicago-cubs
  6. http://www.insidenu.com/2016/8/28/12680068/denver-broncos-los-angeles-rams-final-score-broncos-starting-quarterback-trevor-siemian-paxton-lynch

Hard Knocks; A Gift for NFL Fans, A Curse for NFL Organizations

08-11-16

Sports curses are fun!

They’re usually just theories. They’re something people can use in arguments or discussions and they usually incorporate and illuminate somebody’s misfortune! The NFL has created a few of these curse theories over the years that people love to keep notes of.

Some of these curses have ailing arguments, while others have been disproven. The featured player on the Madden-cover is cursed to face a drastic injury during that corresponding season being one of the more solid pulsing NFL curses. There is a belief that a Super Bowl hangover curse exists, where a team can not repeat championships in consecutive years. “The Hangover Curse” has obviously been flawed by repeat Super Bowl winners. The Dallas Cowboys (1993-94), the Denver Cowboys (1998-99) and the New England Patriots (2004-05) have all proven a high enough win-tolerance to beat their hangovers and stay Super Bowl drunk for multiple seasons! (2) So, not all NFL curses are bullet-proof, but one developing curse seems to carry some pretty good Kevlar.

Hard Knocks is a television series featured on HBO where fans are taken into the cut-throat reality of what NFL players face throughout an NFL preseason at training camp. (3) The show has produced ten seasons, featuring seven different NFL teams. The show has a huge following and gets a new season mainly because NFL fans love it! There are people who aren’t for the cameras being in preseason locker rooms and operations however. Most people who oppose the show don’t like that it shows how the meat is made in the NFL, exposing more information than necessary. Other opposers don’t like that the show makes celebrities of players and coaches that can distract them from their proper preseason prepping duties. Another opposition that an NFL fan could start to argue is that the show totes with it a curse that rules out the ability to win an NFL Super Bowl!

Baltimore Ravens, 2001 – Granted, the Ray Lewis lead Ravens faced multiple NFL curse setbacks as the reigning 2000 Super Bowl champions (The Hangover Curse). But the Ravens year was the closest relevance Hard Knocks ever came to a Super Bowl. Problem was, it was the year before. The Ravens made the playoffs in 2001, but only to the Divisional round ending their season with an 11-7 record. (3)

Dallas Cowboys, 2002 – The Cowboys are a prestigious NFL franchise but even their good NFL ancestry wasn’t a match for the Hard Knocks curse. The Cowboys went 5-11 in 2002 and never even sniffed the playoffs behind the leadership of an aging Emmitt Smith. (3)

The show took a five year hiatus but returned with its malediction in 2007.

Kansas City Chiefs, 2007 – Some thought the 2007 Chiefs had a dominant run-game entering the season thanks to veteran Priest Holmes and young-star Larry Johnson. But the one-two kicks from the backfield had no legs in the Chiefs dismal 4-12 season. The Curse tackled KC for a major loss of a year. (3)

Dallas Cowboys, 2008 – While some complain of the distraction of Hard Knocks, the 2008 Cowboy’s argument doesn’t hold a bag of popcorn in that argument due to the on-roster distractions built in with Adam Pacman Jones and Terrel Owens. This was an easy victory for the curse due to the characters the season was cast. To be fair, the Cowboys improved from their former 2002 Hard Knocks appearance with a 9-7 season but still missed the playoffs. (3)

Cincinnatti Bengals, 2009 – A Hard Knocks team finally made it back to the playoffs in 2009 with the Carson Palmer guided Bengals. The season was equally satisfying for the team as it was for the spectators due to the on camera presence of Chad Ochocinco. Still, 8-5 and the Bengals lost out to the HK Curse, falling to the New York Jets in the playoffs. (3)

New York Jets, 2010 – The Jets caught the Hard Knock bug in 2010 but leap frogged the show’s  follow-up season to the Bengals with an AFC Championship appearance and an 11-5 season. The Jets also trumped Cincy in the entertainment department thanks to the cucked-out-coaching approach of Rex Ryan as New York’s head coach. In the end, the Jets still failed to produce a Hard Knocks show and a Super Bowl. (3)

2011 was absent the Knocks due to the lockout strangle the league faced. (4)

Miami Dolphins, 2012 – Hard Knocks returned at a lulling pace in 2012. The Dolphins featured one of the more boring seasons of Hard Knocks history. Following Ochocinco and Ryan is a pretty tough act. Even worse, the Dolphins posted a decline in wins for HK teams as well behind rookie QB Ryan Tannehill in a playoff-less 7-9 season. (3)

Cincinnatti Bengals, 2013 – While viewers saw the loss of Chad Ochocinco/Johnson from the once again featured Bengals in 2013, but the team saw it as an improvement. Cincy won the NFC North following their second Hard Knocks season but still could not overcome the curse, losing to San Diego Chargers in the playoffs. (3)

Atlanta Falcons, 2014 – Hot-lanta lived up to its nickname in their rendition of Hard Knocks, featuring a lot of high-heated practice fights and tensions. Unfortunately for dirty-bird followers the discourse of fights were reflected in Atlanta’s on-field production. The Hard Knocks cursed lived on following a 6-10 season. (3)

Houston Texans, 2015 – Houston’s Hard Knocks season brought back the playoffs (due mainly to AFC South association) and entertainment with the Paul Bunyon-esque featuring of J.J. Watt. However, Watt and the Texans still could not break the curse falling miserably in the playoffs with a 30 point loss to the Chiefs. (5)

Los Angeles Rams, 2016 …

So, is this the year the curse is broken with Hard Knocks with the freshly moved St. Lo— I mean– L.A. Rams? I’m going to be dull and boring like a permanent marker and say no! Between moving, a questionable quarterback situation, a tough division and a coach who’s been believed to be cursed to go 8-8 the Rams just don’t sell me as the team to do it.

Will I still watch every episode, of course! Teams are 82-79 all-time in seasons spotlighted or tarnished with a Hard Knocks contract. (3) But one thing that has been proven with the show’s ten season popularity history; people love to feel included in the NFL! Whether it be the transactions, the cut-throat drama of making the team, or the live look-in of the lives NFL people endure we will watch it! Even if we know the end results is a mediocre product and a lackluster season. I’ll say this for the show; it’s better than the Kardashians! I just hope as long as this NFL curse develops I hope they never extend an invite to the typically gullible Jim Irsay and the Indianapolis Colts (for the sake of my personal fandom).

Curses spawn from other discussion topics. While the Hard Knocks curse is only around due to the show’s mere existence let’s just enjoy the HBO series and remember at the end of the day the curse is simply that; a product of our own discussion!

Sources;

  1. http://www.digitaltrends.com/gaming/the-madden-curse/2/
  2. http://www.espn.com/nfl/superbowl/history/winners
  3. http://www.hbo.com/hard-knocks
  4. http://www.cinemablend.com/television/HBO-Hard-Knocks-Cancelled-2011-Return-2012-33903.html
  5. http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/htx/2015.htm

U.S.A. = United Spoiled Athletes

08-03-16

Perspective. Something people often lose sight of! Often it is easy to fall into a belief that you have it worse than others. You do it out of habit, and it is a triggered reaction by the smallest of things to the point where it seems we are looking for things to complain about.

“It’s a beautiful day out, but c’mon! Can’t I get a cloud to get some shade for a second?”

“There’s hardly any traffic today… I just hate that the radio won’t play that song I really like!”

“I’m going to the Olympics!!! Too bad it’s in Rio.”

It happens to everybody; from those living paycheck to payheck to even Olympic athletes. However, with the Olympic athletes it seems to be all that we have heard about from them in the media with the 2016 Rio Olympics.

It started with the fear of the Zika virus that threatened enough Olympians to even completely boycott the Olympics. However, some still stuck out the pending mosquito-born threat and it has even been revealed that the Zika virus is on a decline in Rio right now due to the Brazilian winter months. (1) So naturally, the athletes went searching for something else to complain about!

The Rio Olympic Village living conditions.

As the athletes arrived at the Rio Olympic Village, the complaints came rolling in about the rooms they would inhibit for the games. Problems stretched from missing shower curtains to beds that are too short and plumbing problems, making the rooms come off as if they were not finished in time for the games. (3) The reports even included accusations of theft during an evacuation for a fire drill of laptops and other belongings.

Give the Olympic athletes some room on this one. No one likes staying in lackluster hotels.  Especially when they have more than likely stayed in much better conditions in the past somewhere else, and any threat of theft is easily labeled as not okay! But this is where perspective can really come in hand. The complaining athletes don’t have to look far to get that perspective, because they have it among them already in the form of a unified team of lovable misfits; the Refugee Olympic Team!

The team is made up of ten athletes, two Syrian swimmers, six South Sudan and Ethiopia runners, and two judo athletes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (2) Of those Syrian swimmers one is Rami Anis, whose story was highlighted in a TIME.com article entitled “Meet the Syrian Refugee Swimming for Olympic Glory”. The article highlights Anis’ story of fleeing Syria and how he eventually journeyed from refugee to Olympic talent.

The article also touches on what Anis faced in the war-stricken conditions of Syria. While the Olympic athletes may be uncomfortable in Olympic village, they don’t seem to hold a candle to what Anis was living in while STUCK in Syria. While in Syria, Anis was most likely to be forced into the military to fight against Syrian government protesters and to work on isolating civilian neighborhoods. Conditions haven’t improved in Syria since Anis fled in 2011. It has been well documented that those still STUCK in Syria are facing food/water scarcity and struggling to find medical aid or be allowed leave from the war-ravaged area, preventing any possible refugee outbreaks. (4)

The Olympic athletes are not STUCK in the Rio Olympic Village! In fact, some like the USA Men’s and Women’s Basketball team have even snubbed the village in order to accommodate their living taste. Instead, the U.S. hoopers will be enjoying the luxury of the Silver Cloud, a U.S. cruise ship. (5) Maybe, instead of complaining about the Rio Olympic living conditions, Olympians should just follow the U.S. Basketball team’s lead and treat themselves if they can. Just keep in mind, not all cruise ships allow for the smoothest of sailing. #CarnivalTriumphProblems. (6) Still, not all U.S. Olympians feel things in Rio are as bad they appear, offering a more promising perspective.

Hope Solo was adimant before the games that she was not comfortable with being apart of Rio 2016 due to both Zika and the predicted living conditions but has flip-flopped her views upon arrival. (7)

“It’s a little bit unfortunate because I think the American media has been really tough on people of Brazil… I feel a little bit bad because when you come here you learn for yourself. I think that we’ve been very hard on the local people.”

Solo, in her third Olympics, said it seemed problems in Brazil were being blown out of proportion by media in the U.S.

“You look back in 2004 in Greece, and the same thing there, bad publicity surrounding the games, and China as well… I don’t know why, but we like to sensationalize everything and scare people and then … when the games go on, everything goes on as planned, ends up being a beautiful tournament. And I expect no less here,” (8) said Solo in an article posted on The Oregonian.

Solo’s positive perspective will hopefully be the best contagious thing to come out of the 2016 summer games, instead of the continued rhetoric of protests from attendees. Of course things are not ideal in Rio, but if you go looking for blackheads you’re going to create a lot of zits!

The Olympic athletes living conditions may not be up to par, but the art of perspective must be taken of their surrounding territory. Rio has a population of 21.4% living under the poverty line according to a study done by IndexMundi. (9) Sometimes we need to observe the bigger problems facing a country to keep a proper perspective in fear of repeating the past. In the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Hitler used fronts and cover-ups to hide an evil regime building up below the country’s political surface. (10) Unlike the Berlin Games of 80 years ago, let us not turn away from the controversy of a country’s problems and instead find a way to properly exonerate the real problems Brazil is facing like poverty. If nothing else stop highlighting their minor flaws and realize that things could be much worse than an uncomfortable bed or a leaking toilet!

Instead of grumbling about the state of things like living conditions and viruses (especially ones reported to be on a decline) let’s go searching for the positives of these Olympics. Positives that we as fans love to fall in love with! Like, the story of ten refugees that are seeking to represent their country’s even if they know it will be celebrated as a member of a team that unifies under a dissimilar flag. 

Perspective is something we could all use a dose of sometimes. The beauty of the Olympics is the coming together of so many from so many different stories and living conditions that they can offer those proper perspective views. At the end of the day it’s important to remember that someone, somewhere has it worse!

Sources:

  1. https://www.rio2016.com/en/news/drop-in-zika-cases-and-dry-winter-months-point-to-almost-virus-free-games-organisers-and-health-officials-say
  2. Syrian swimmer, runners from South Sudan and Ethiopia, and two judo athletes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 
  3. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/early-lead/wp/2016/08/02/sochi-revisited-olympic-athletes-journalists-already-ripping-rio-living-conditions/?client=safari.
  4. http://rudaw.net/mobile/english/middleeast/syria/210720163
  5. http://www.npr.org/sections/thetorch/2016/08/02/488421196/in-rio-u-s-men-s-basketball-will-stay-on-a-cruise-ship-the-silver-cloud
  6. http://www.cnn.com/2013/12/17/travel/carnival-cruise-triumph-problems/
  7. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/zika/12150345/Zika-fears-force-US-goalkeeper-to-consider-Olympic-boycott-as-Kenya-says-they-may-not-attend.html
  8. http://www.oregonlive.com/olympics/index.ssf/2016/08/hope_solo_blames_us_media_for.html
  9. http://www.indexmundi.com/brazil/population_below_poverty_line.html
  10. http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/olympics.html

Big Trophies Need to Come from Small Markets

07-27-16

New York City. Los Angeles. Dallas. Chicago. Philadelphia. Five major United States cities, but population isn’t all that they have in common. The five cities listed above also have started to struggle to win trophies for their respected heavily populated areasin professional sports.

American society naturally loves the under dogs in sports; that narrative is what makes movies like “Space Jam” and “Hoosiers”, awesome! The recent big city blues in terms of titles in America’s big four sports (NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL) has been something that most enjoy… As long as there’s nothing else to enjoy. Confused? Let me sooth your muddled thoughts with a logical approach to why it’s good to see small markets win!

The top hardware from the four Major Professional Leagues in America are going to America’s smaller markets like the Bay Area, Denver, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Kansas City, Miami, Seattle, Baltimore and San Antonio. Not the big names by any means, but that’s not such a bad thing!

In the big cities there are increased populations to compliment the area’s supply and demand of needs to fulfill those organiztion’s requirements. Plus, those bigger markets aren’t reliant on those teams to win in order to have thriving economies. They can rely on prestige and their typical annual merchandising sales. Just look at the Dallas Cowboys who backed Ezekiek Elliott’s recent jersey sales all the way to the top of the off-season window. Despite the Cowboys not having won an NFL title since 1996, they still claim the top jersey. Without a doubt, Elliott’s sales mainly came from a large following of big media fans that will always strive as long as they are top media. (6)

The smaller markets however, depend on their local professional teams succeeding with performance, which is why their rewards of titles are a good thing!

“Not only has James led the Cavs to only their second appearance in the NBA Finals since they were founded in 1970, but the effect he’s had from a business perspective is felt far and wide. New data reveal that the Cavs have seen a substantial increase in nearly every business category—from tickets to merchandise to TV time—compared with previous seasons.” (1)

The previous excerpt was snagged from an article about Lebron James’ impact upon returning to Cleveland and bringing them back to dominance. 

Not only is the resurgence of the Cleveland Cavaliers good for a less predictable NBA, that would have featured more titles for franchises like the Los Angeles Lakers or Boston Celtics, but it’s good for the Clevelandesque smaller sized market’s economy! All of the NBA’s past five winners (Cleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors, San Antonio Spurs, and Miami Heat twice) are below the top five media markets according to a report done in 2016. (2) But it’s not only the NBA that is seeing more dominance from the inferior markets.

Denver (the number ten media market) hoisted the Lombardi trophy in 2015. Preceding the Broncos are New England (number eight), Seattle (number fourteen) and Baltimore (number 26). (3)

Last year the Workd Series was won by the Kansas City Royals (number 33 media market) in the MLB. (5) In the NHL, the Pittsburgh Penguins earned the Stanley Cup as the number 23 media market in America. (4) Certainly, smaller markets could have won and these aren’t all outlandishly small media markets for examples, but they aren’t nearly as large as the cities listed at the beginning of this article The only one of those large markets that has enjoyed a title in recent years is Chicago with the Chicago Blackhawks in 2015. (4) but even then, it doesn’t change the notion this article is striving for. That is that the smaller markets need to succeed over the bigger markets and it’s a good thing that they are doing so.

But why do they need this underdog success? 

Think about it. 

If the Dodgers or Yankees win the World Series this fall, yes it will be celebrated but for how long before the attention turns to the Rams and Giants/Jets? Or just in general people will move on to finer things available like Broadway in N.Y.C. or the beach in L.A. But, when the Cavaliers win the NBA Finals it is much more appreciated by the fans in the heart of Ohio who have nothing to look forward to all summer except the hopes of a good show at the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame! That trophy is something they carry with them moving forward with it being their new claim to fame and something to hold over people’s heads.

Small markets need the success to keep the fans interested in the few area teams they have available because it is typically their best forms of entertainment! Larger markets however just need a championship once in a blue moon to keep appearances a float as top dog franchises.

Humans love sports and most of the time love underdogs, and when you can get behind both in one move it really lights a fun-distraction of entertainment for all to enjoy. We love under dogs in all walks of life but our relationships with under dogs stays consistent. We love the mom and pop stores that compete with super centers. We want to cheer on the local smaller markets that are trying to get by but realize that sometimes the bigger store has more essentials that grab our attention as well. 

Still, we see better things happen when the smaller scaled markets win. Merchandise, loyalty, interest and controversy all rises with the success of the under dogs.

Every now and again the powers of Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Philly and Dallas will enviably end up on top and winning. All the more reason to cherish the times we have to celebrate a mom and pop franchise’s victory. While you may hear overwhelmingly from those larger media markets complaining that the sports world is better when the Yankees, Lakers, Cowboys and Blackhawks are good, just remember the greater good that comes from teams like the Broncos’, Royals’ and Cavaliers’ titles and what they generate for the sake of their societies!

Sources 

  1. http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/2015/06/01/Economic-Boom-Lebron-James
  2. http://www.newsgeneration.com/broadcast-resources/top-100-radio-markets/
  3. http://espn.go.com/nfl/superbowl/history/winners
  4. http://espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?page=cupchamps11
  5. http://espn.go.com/mlb/worldseries/history/winners
  6. http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/17112286/dallas-cowboys-running-back-ezekiel-elliott-tops-nfl-jersey-sales

Headliners! 07-12-16

Udonis Haslem Says Miami’s Loss of Dwayne Wade Could Have Been Avoided

Quick Reaction; Of course last week’s Dwayne Wade trade didn’t have to happen. But Miami had to look no further than the opposite Nation’s coast’s franchise darlings in the Los Angeles Lakers to see what happens when you hold onto the high contract old-warrior as the Lakers did with Kobe Bryant. What are the odds of the Lakers making the NBA Playoffs next year? Think the Bryant death drain had anything to do with that? Why would Miami risk repeating that with Wade?

Minnesota Lynx Promote “Black Lives Matter”; Security Boycotts In Protest

Quick Reaction; It’s hard to take either side all in when it comes to police brutality and being made aware of it! The four cops that left in wake of the Lynx player’s protest is understandable, yet at the same time you can’t blame the Lynx for trying to use their vaulted platform to drive something they clearly feel passionate about. The one thing I can say for the cops that bailed their Target Center posts is this; if you feel under appreciated when you’re putting your own safety on the line at public events where the event’s main attraction is causing your lowered appreciation, you have that right to leave! Similarly, if you’re in a marriage where your significant other is mistreating you, you’re reserved that right to ditch out on that situation as well. The Lynx need to realize their protest was largely disrespectful despite however peaceful a movement they were originally trying to generate! (5)

87th MLB All-Star Features Ugly Fashion

Quick Reaction; Baseball is a nostalgic’s dream sport! The 2016 All-Star game is a prime example of how much the sport clings to that nostalgia driven agenda by bringing back the UPS flavored uniforms of the San Diego Padres that dates back to the 1970s and 80s. Yes, the uniforms are ugly but the best look is one of pride and wearing the brown and mustard yellow funked out unis shows off that pride. Will the jerseys do well in the fan market, probably not! But honestly ask yourself, when was the last time you wanted to buy an All-Star Game style jersey? That said, let’s just pray to the baseball God’s that Ron Burgundy blesses Petco Park and San Diego-ites… San Diego-ans, S-Sa-San DIEGONS! … San Diegons with his presence and makes an even greater night for nostalgia and baseball! (4)

Miko Grimes’ Social Media Post and Outburst Played a Part in Her Husband’s Termination from Miami Dolphins

Quick Reaction; When was the last time a social media presence worked out for anyone? The Miami Dolphins released Brent Grimes this offseason and the organization even stated Mrs. Miko Grimes’ actions were part of the problem. Miko reacted wrongfully again posting a tweet that, intended or not, had anti-Semitic references. Brent is still in the league but if Miko keeps up her unfiltered media presence one can only wonder how much her husband’s current employer (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) will put up with! (3) Still, the main question we need to ask is; Is a social media presence worth forgoing the successes of your life?

Rory McIlroy Says Golf Isn’t Important to the Olympics

Quick Reaction; “I’ll probably watch the Olympics, but I’m not sure golf will be one of the events I watch.” When pressed which events those would be, he replied: “Probably the events like track and field, swimming, diving… the stuff that matters,” said big-time golf star Rory McIlroy. Obviously some will disagree with both McIlroy’s demeaning and slanted view towards the golf event of the 2016 Rio Olympics. Still, one needs to consider that if this is how the sport’s bigger name feels and there is truth to Rory’s statement, then maybe the sport should be considered for Olympic removal. There are other sports that would be more appreciative of the nod, just ask the world’s top wrestlers if they would like to take golf’s spot in 2020, bet they won’t hesitate to fill in! Wrestling was cut from the 2020 event list in 2013. (2)

Sources:

1)https://www.google.com/amp/www.telegraph.co.uk/golf/2016/07/12/rory-mcilroy-belittles-golfs-return-to-the-olympics-insisting-he/amp/?client=safari#

2)http://mobile.nytimes.com/2013/02/13/sports/olympics-may-drop-wrestling-in-2020.html

3)https://www.google.com/amp/www.nj.com/articles/18932327/miko_grimes_defends_apparent_anti-semitic_rip_of_m.amp?client=safari#

4)http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/look-no-matter-what-you-say-the-2016-all-star-game-uniforms-are-great/

5)http://www.citypages.com/news/minneapolis-cops-stage-walk-out-at-lynx-game-bob-kroll-slams-pathetic-attendance-8427285

6)http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/17019392/miami-heat-captain-udonis-haslem-wishes-convnced-dwyane-wade-stay