Sunday, February 28, 2010

Ryan Miller was Great and Other Thoughts from the Weekend in Sports

As you probably know Canada beat the USA in OT to claim the gold medal in hockey. The game was great with Zach Parise scoring a late goal to tie the game. Unfortunately, Sidney Crosby ended it. This was a great weekend in sports. The top three teams in college hoops all went down and the Winter Olympics is coming to an amazing close.

- Ryan Miller was gangsta throughout the entire Olympics. The USA goalie kept his team in every single game and led them to victory every time except the gold medal game. Miller was peppered with a lot of shots throughout the tourney and came up big most of the time. He was the best player on the ice in many of the games. Now we'll see if Buffalo can ride the hot hand into the NHL playoffs.

- Canada made the right choice in changing goalies. Martin Brodeur has been the Canada goalie for years but he didn't look crisp early in the tourney. Switching to Roberto Luongo paid dividends.

- Way to clean up the garbage Zach Parise. Just when the USA looked dead Parise put in a goal to tie the game. Luongo had been giving up rebounds a lot and Parise was in the right place at the right time.

- I will be watching more hockey this season. The Olympics helped me to identify with more players. I love the Flyers but Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews are giving me a lot of reasons to watch the Blackhawks.

- The USA defense looked tired late in the game. Brain Rafalski and Ryan Suter played a lot of minutes in the game and it showed.

- I love the P&G commercials with the Olympians Moms.

- Athletes don't win silver and bronze, they lose gold. Do you think USA Hockey was happy receiving their silver medals?

- I like watching the NFL combine, but too much is made about what players do in shorts. Haven't NFL guys been watching all of the players all season?

- My friend Josh doesn't think Tim Tebow can change positions in the Show. I do.

- After all of the hoops this weekend I can't wait for Conference Tourney season and March Madness. I'll post my bracket on here and I still think Kansas will win it all.

- Purdue's title hopes went out the window the Robbie Hummel's torn ACL.

- Danica Patrick isn't ready for NASCAR.

- Jimmie Johnson has decided to dominate early in the season instead of just when Chase time comes.

Let me know your thoughts on the weekend in sports.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Rough Week for RBs, Finally some HGH testing

Earlier this week the San Diego Chargers released franchise cornerstone LaDanian Tomlinson. Yesterday my team the Philadelphia Eagles released Brian Westbrook. Both moves made too much sense not to happen.

For the better part of the decade, LT was the best running back in football. We all know the numbers: single season touchdown record, 100 catches in a season, 2006 MVP and many others we could go on. However, as many running backs do, he reached 30 and his numbers started to decline. This past season he had the worst season of his career. With the money owed to him the Chargers had to let him go. I will give San Diego some points for bring LT in and speaking with him in person before announcing it.

Brian Westbrook has been one of my favorite Eagles, and one of football's most productive backs over the last five seasons. He has struggled with injuries and was always listed as questionable, but he produced when Philly needed him. He was the biggest playmaker in an offense that didn't have any until DeSean Jackson came along. My favorite Westbrook play was at the end of the Cowboys game a few years ago, when he took a knee at the one instead of going into the end zone. Westbrook will be missed.

As for both of the backs, I wonder if anyone will pick them up and where they will end up.

Secondly, baseball is finally starting to get it. After years of rejecting steroid testing, MLB finally implemented it. Now, Minor League Baseball has said they will add HGH testing as well. It's only a matter of time before the majors follow suit. This is an important time for MLB. With the NFL and NBA having labor disputes on the horizon, MLB needs to capitalize. Hopefully, they can finally start cleaning up the game.

Monday, February 22, 2010

USA vs Canada and other thoughts from the Weekend

What a hockey game last night. Team USA took on host Canada in hockey and defeated them 5-3. It wasn't the Miracle on Ice of 1980, but it was a great win. Defenseman Brian Rafalski scored two goals and assisted on another while goalie Ryan Miller made 42 saves.

- Before the Games started analyst Jeremy Roenik said Miller would have to be the MVP for Team USA to win the gold medal. Miller was up to the task last night as the Canadians out shot Team USA 45-22. While this win doesn't guarantee a medal, it gives the young Americans some much needed confidence.

- The veterans came out to play last night. Captain Jamie Langenbrunner scored a goal, center Chris Drury scored a goal and both played outstanding defense from their forward positions. We talked about the way Rafalski played. If Team USA can keep getting these performances from these guys, a medal is a good possibility.

- Lost in the shuffle was how well Patrick Kane played. He didn't score any goals but he was the only player who seemed able to put pressure on the Canadian defense.

- While the Miracle on Ice was a memorable win, does anyone remember that that game didn't win the gold medal?

- Talk about redemption for Bode Miller. After being shutout four years ago, Miller has won three medals this year and is still in the running for two more.

- Jimmie Johnson dominated the California race yesterday. The four time defending champion is picking up where he left off last season. That does not bode well for other drivers trying to dethrone him.

Let me know what you think about the hockey win and other Winter Olympic Sports as the last week of the games begins.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Quick Hits from the Super Bowl

When people ask me why I watch every single game, I always answer you never know when you'll see an instant classic. Its why I stay up until 2:00 a.m. watching the Big East Semifinal or watch a late season NFL game that doesn't mean anything. Last night's Super Bowl was a great game. I didn't have a dog in the fight so all I really wanted was one of the quarterbacks having to drive their team for a winning score late in the game. Mission accomplished.

- Why winning this game would have put Peyton Manning in a new class of QBs who have won multiple Super Bowls, losing doesn't diminish how great he is still.

- The Saints dropped balls in the first half, the Colts dropped them when it mattered most in the second.

- Where was Reggie Wayne the entire game?

- Drew Brees is great. Rough first quarter but he was great the rest of the game. Deserved the MVP.

- I thought when the Colts stopped the Saints near the goal line at the end of the first half, Indy was about to extend their lead and put the game away early. I thought Peyton would drive them down the field for some points, get the ball back to start the second half, and put more points on the board.

- Ballsy call by Sean Payton to go for the onside kick. That play changed the momentum of the game and kept Peyton Manning on the side line a bit longer.

- Dwight Freeney was able to go and even recorded a sack in the first half. In the second half however, he never seemed able to get right and Brees was never hit in the second half.

- I thought that once the Colts were able to establish the run Indy would pull the game out. The Saints just stepped up whenever they needed to.

- Big play by Tracy Porter with the pick-six. Reggie Wayne looked to have finally gotten on the same page with Peyton on the drive, but the Saints were ready for that play. They blitzed and it looked like Wayne tipped the route by stutter stepping which enabled Porter to jump the pass.

-The Porter play looked similar to the one that Eli Manning hit in his Super Bowl win. Eli sent his receiver on a pump and go while Peyton threw the slant and Porter took it to the house.

- The pass Manning threw to Dallas Clark over and in between five defenders is one of the best passes you'll ever see.

- Great play by Lance Moore on the two-point conversion.

- Can't forget Saints Garrett Hartley making three field goals from longer than 40 yards.

- A couple of years ago the Colts picked up Adam Vinatieri to kick for them. Vinatieri got hurt late in the season and the Colts picked up Matt Stover. When the decision to choose one for the postseason came up, they chose Stover. Not saying Vinatieri would have made the 51-yarder Stover missed, but that was the Colts last chance.

Now that football is over we can solely concentrate on pro and college hoops, and counting down the days until pitchers and catchers report. Also, its Speed Week in Daytona. Can anyone stop Jimmie Johnson? And will someone please wreck Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

It's Signing Day

Signing Day is finally here. The day that every college football fan has hope again. After months of watching 17 and 18-year old kids every move, athletes finally make their college choices official.

For months we've been hearing of commitments and decommitments of these players but with the way most of them treat them, commitment shouldn't be the word we use. Commitment means you're making a promise to someone or some place. The athletes are all over the place even after they have "committed" to an institution. While yes the system allows it and in some cases it may be warranted, we need to find a new word. Not sure what word we should use but I'm open to suggestions.

Also, I wouldn't get too caught up in rankings now. Yes its nice to say we have this many great players coming in but realize they haven't done anything yet. Take Arthur Brown from Miami. He came out as a five-star and one of the top linebackers in the country. He never really saw the field except in late game or special teams situations, and now has left school. A few years ago the Canes were gushing about him. Now he's a player looking for a school (Tennessee anyone?).

Further, some of the guys won't even be on the field until two or three years from now. Only the best of the best see significant playing time on really good teams. Anyway, enjoy the whole day and at the end we'll see who ended up where and get started on the 2011 class.

My Wish List for FSU:

1. Christian Jones - LB - Winter Park - Dad and brother played for the Noles
2. Christian Green - ATH - Tampa - Cousin of E.G. Green
3. Corey Lemonier - DE - Hialeah -
4. Calvin Smith - DT - Hialeah
5. Bjoern Warner - DT - Salisbury, CT - has a teammate that already committed.
6. Ego Ferguson - DE - Chatham, VA - would be nice but not so sure

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Took Long Enough

With the world of boxing still reeling from the "postponing" of what would have been one of the greatest fights ever, Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones, Jr. have decided to have a rematch. This comes 17 years after their first fight, a unanimous decision won by Jones for the middleweight championship.

This is a fight that would have a lot more people interested if it happened about ten years ago when the fighters were still some of the best in the sport. Now both are over 40, Hopkins is 45 and Jones 41, and holding onto what's left of their boxing careers.

At one time Jones was considered the best pound-for-pound ever. Now he has lost his last fight by first round KO to Danny Green (who? not the UNC ballplayer) and his glass jaw has been exposed over and over.

Hopkins is still having a shred of success, but he hasn't beaten a top fighter in some time. I appreciate them "giving fans what they want," it just would have been better at the beginning of the decade and not the end. What are your thoughts on these two old guys finally fighting?