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Newz Forum: OTHER: The Lebrons, the Lakers, the BCS, Carlos Boozer, the Rangers plus more...

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posted on Jan, 10 2006 @ 04:47 PM
I must begin with an erratum. Yesterday, pondering the quarterbacking woes for the Raiders, I said that Kerry Collins had performed miserably this year (that was correct) but that he had led the Raiders to a Super Bowl a few years ago (that was wrong). As #1 son correctly pointed out, Collins led the Giants to the Super Bowl several years ago but the Raiders QB in their most recent appearance in that game was Rich Gannon. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.

The Orange Bowl game was great. The Rose Bowl game was as great if not better. There are several lessons one may learn from both of these games:

In college football games between two good teams, it isn't over until it's over and you shouldn't go to bed at the end of the 3rd quarter.

Bowl games between the top teams are often stunningly good; bowl games between two 6-5 teams from mid-major conferences are stupefyingly soporific.

Vince Young will be a very good NFL player. He'll be the kind of big and mobile QB that Michael Vick should be by now but may never be. Vince Young can reliably deliver a pass where it needs to be.

Give props to the BCS for what it did this season. Don't focus on whether or not it was 'dumb luck' or 'intelligent design' that got it there. The BCS gave us two final bowl games that were both 'tens' on the infamous 1-to-10 scale. And remember, under the 'old system' that the BCS replaced, it would have been USC/Penn State in the Rose Bowl with Texas in the Orange Bowl against an opponent that the Orange Bowl Committee would have picked. Thank you, BCS. Say it. It won't hurt that much...

Having watched lots - but not nearly all - of the bowl games on ABC and ESPN (call them 'ABC-Lite' in this context), I think I have seen promos for just about everything that ABC will have on its prime time lineup for the upcoming months. From that basis, I want to say that I am tempted to tune in to see exactly none of those programs. That's zero, nada, nil, naught, squat - - you get the idea.

Let me switch gears here and talk about basketball for a moment. A few months ago, I asked if I was the only one who had tired of those idiotic commercials for Intel Centrino technology done by Blue Man Group. I haven't seen one of them in a while so maybe - just maybe - I was not the only one. Now let me ask another similar question:

Am I the only one who thinks that the commercials featuring 'The Lebrons' are stupid and contrived? I hope not.

I noticed that prior to his suspension, Kobe Bryant had a game where he took 37 shots and handed off zero assists. No, I'm not going to rag on him for hogging the ball or trying to pad his stats; after all, should he really be looking to give the ball to the likes of Kwame Brown or Devean George or Chris Mihm or Von'illa' Wafer? I don't think so. Here is question that came to my mind. Dr. Jerry Buss is paying the current Lakers' coach $10M a year; so how complicated a coaching job can it be to put the ball in the hands of the best player and have him shoot the damned ball? I could do that for $5M a year and would be willing to grow a small beard while doing it. I suspect you would too.

Bob Weiss was the first NBA coaching casualty of the season in Seattle. Last year, the Sonics won their division; this year they were off to a 13-17 start. The players complained last year that Nate McMillan was too much of a martinet and 'lobbied' for a 'kinder, gentler coach'. Weiss is that kind of guy and the team started to come apart at the seams. So now, the Sonics get Bob Hill at the wheel and let's just say that he has the same reputation in the NBA that Tom Coughlin has in the NFL. Probably, the same players who thought McMillan was a nitpicker are going to think Hill is Simon Legree. But the early evidence is that some of the Sonics' players really do need the good old 10-EEE suppository.

Carlos Boozer raised some questions about his honor and his ethics in the way he left the Cleveland Cavaliers to go to the Utah Jazz. Then last year, he raised some questions in Utah about his dedication to the team and the game and his commitment to rehabilitation from injuries that some folks felt might not be nearly as horrendous as they were made out to be. Whatever, it's the New Year so everyone has turned over a new leaf, right? Check out this item from Brad Rock in the Deseret Morning News:

'How's this for the ol' switcheroo: Carlos Boozer, the chronically injured forward, has been missing Jazz games while rehabbing his hamstring in L.A. But when the Jazz played in L.A. this week, Boozer quietly stayed in Salt Lake for his rehab work.

'Is it just me, or is this starting to look like a 'Where's Waldo?' cartoon?'

Scott Boras must have some kind of hypnotic power over Rangers' owner, Tom Hicks. Once again, Hicks has paid a lot of money for a Boras client - this time it is Kevin Millwood over a 5-year timeframe. The top of the perennially pitching-deprived Rangers' rotation next year will be Kevin Millwood, Adam Eaton and Vicente Padilla. All three of them have 'Phillies' in their pitching pedigree (Eaton was drafted by the Phillies in the mid-90s and was in their farm system for 4 or 5 years.) and even the pitching-deprived Rangers would not take a giant step forward by latching onto folks who have spent time on the mound in Philly.

Yesterday, I mused about some of the possible landing spots for displaced NFL coaches as the game of coaching musical chairs gets into full swing. Lest anyone get the wrong impression, there is exactly no evidence whatsoever that Wayne Fontes, Ray Handley and or Richie Kotite will be getting any calls for interviews. Imagine the life of an agent who represented all three of these guys. He'd make the good old 'Maytag Repairman' look like a party animal.

Finally, a note from Jim Armstrong in the Denver Post:

'The Pacers have talked to the Raptors about a deal involving Ron Artest. Why? For one thing, Toronto is closer to Siberia, where they really want to send him.'

But don't get me wrong, I love sports... ... ...



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