Tying up the rest of the loose ends:
*Boston Bruins. So the NHL trade deadline is rapidly approaching. Some trades have already happened. But things should head toward fast and furious in the coming days.
What will the Bruins do?
Last season, GM Don Sweeney went out and got Charlie Coyle and Marcus Johansson, which admittedly was more than I thought he would do. I mean, it wasn’t like getting Jon Michael Liles and Lee Stempniak, like he did one year. You can argue the merits of handing Coyle a 6 year extension for huge bucks this season. But the moves from last year worked out pretty well, I think we can say.
Unfortunately for Donnie Hockey, that hole on the right wing of David Krejci (and Jake DeBrusk) still exists. Seems like it has existed for years. And I guess it has…other than the Johansson stint.
In my opinion, that’s almost the only move to make. The “Perfection Line” of Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak is all set. Wait, I still need to know where that moniker came from. No one but people on the NHL Network seems to call them that. I don’t ever remember hearing that nickname until the playoffs last spring. Mostly out of Doc Emrick’s mouth. Annoying…but whatever…
The gaggle of third and fourth liners the Bs have would probably suffice. Coyle/Anders Bjork is a fine start to the third line. Sean Kuraly/Par Lindholm/Chris Wagner/Joakim Nordstrom/Anyone is certainly acceptable as a fourth line.
Karson Kuhlman may very well be an NHL player. But I am beginning to think that isn’t this year. And I am totally done with the Danton Heinen Experiment. On any line.
If you added some beef to the bottom six and a somewhat of a scoring RW to the second line, I think we are good.
Wait…defense anyone? I am not sure they need it. Well, no one will stop any kind of upgrade attempt of course. But I think the 2nd line guy is more important. The 9-10 guys in the mix now on D would seem to work. Perhaps Jeremy Lauzon is the real deal. Or perhaps he is being showcased for a trade. He did just sign a cheap extension after all. And you ain’t getting rid of that John Moore contract.
But if they stood pat on D, I actually wouldn’t mind.
Who to give up? Anyone! Maybe Sweens can soak someone into taking Heinen. Or even better, “The Player Formerly Known As David Backes”.
Ummmmm…yeah, I know those ain’t happening.
But the time is now to make another run. Patrice, Marchy, Z, Krejci, Tuuks, etc aren’t getting any younger. As much as I would like to hang on to guys like Bjork, Kuhlman and Jack Studnicka and hope they develop, if the package is right, Donnie has to consider dealing those guys.
After all, guys like JFK, Peter Cehlarik, Trent Frederic, Zach Senyshyn, Jakob Zboril, Anton Blidh, etc. have or will ever make it. And those are “kids” that Sweeney had high hopes for. Among many others. So who is to say the likes of Kuhlman will either?
*Tom Brady. Everyone sick of this talk yet? Still a month away from free agency. It will be an absolutely fascinating process once things start going down. But I’m a little exhausted from it all at this point.
How much more can we talk about it? Hasn’t every angle been covered thus far?
Is there really any NEW news? Or just idiots like me speculating? I say it’s the latter.
Wake me up on this one in a few weeks…
*Dustin Pedroia. I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again: PLEASE GO AWAY!!
The guy was a good player for a long time for the Boston Red Sox. But he seems to be the only one that doesn’t realize that his career is over. We keep hearing he has setback after setback. And how he needs to “regroup and consider his options”. We hear it seemingly hear it every day. And will through Spring Training, most assuredly.
I appreciate his zeal to get back and play the game. But that ship has sailed.
If it’s all about getting the 25 mil plus left on his deal, well that is all guaranteed, so he’s going to get it anyway.
Step aside Dustin. It’s long past time.
*Kobe. His death was certainly tragic. As was his daughters’. But so were the deaths of the other seven on board that helicopter. I think the general public loses sight of that waaaaaaaaay too many times when it comes to celebrities. But I am never going to win that fight, ssssssooooo…
As my man Colby recently posted, along with most assuredly several others, a little bit of a cloud still kind of hung over him as his career went on. Yes, the rape accusations were 17 years ago. But it’s funny how that all played out. Charges dropped, case dismissed, civil suit being settled, Kobe buying his wife like a 4 million dollar ring while this was all going on…and everything else…how soon we all forget.
Listen. There’s no argument about Kobe’s basketball ability and the fact he was one of the greatest of all time. He also may have remade himself into a quality person as he got older. Maybe he was a quality person all along but made at least that one mistake. I don’t know. I never knew the guy personally.
But that’s my problem with putting all these athletes and celebrities on a pedestal. No one knows “how great a guy” that any of these people are. Am I supposed to take other athletes’ or performers’ words for it? Who knows about those people either?
Recognize his greatness in the sport. But let’s not get carried away with some of the nonsense that has been spilling out about him “in tribute”.
That’s all I am saying.
*XFL. There’s been a request to comment on this. So here goes:
I have watched very little of the first two weeks. But what I have seen is a lot of disorganization across the board. Officials, coaches, players, etc. And I haven’t exactly seen great football either.
That’s not much of an analysis. And since I’ve only seen a fraction, it may be totally erroneous.
One thing is for sure though: If teams are already firing coaches and team captains after the first week of games, that has to raise a red flag. ONE GAME? A little hard to believe.
Maybe Vince McMahon sent down the orders. That’s a little scary to think about, no?
In any event, despite the Blowhards’ love for the game of football, we really haven’t been inspired to watch much of it. That seems like a problem for the league if we aren’t the only ones.
I could probably sum up the lack of desire in two words: “Matt McGloin”.
*Super Bowl. As we all know by now, the Kansas City Chiefs won the Super Bowl and Jimmy Garoppolo peed his pants in the 4th quarter of the game. Does that mean that Jimmy Football now sucks and that he isn’t considered a franchise quarterback anymore? I don’t have the answer to that as of yet.
What I do know is that if your coach does not trust you to with plenty of time left to move down the field at the end of the first half, then that could be a problem.
So maybe the jury is still out on Jimmy G?
No need to comment further as the game was over two weeks ago and I suppose we are all on to the XFL. And…I passed on watching the halftime show and most of the commercials. So I don’t have any intelligent analysis there.
I really just needed a few words on the game to wrap up the picks portion of the season. As poor as they were, we still have to recap, right?
Week (against the spread): 1-0
Week (straight up): 1-0
Lock Of The Week (season, ATS): 10-7
Season (against the spread): 136-131
Season (straight up): 171-96
…moving on from the Celtics to the Red Sox, as we still struggle with accepting the Bruins’ Game 7 Stanley Cup Final loss. We will at some point and of course have plenty to say when we get there.
But for now, let’s start a running tally of random Sox thoughts that have been bouncing around the old noggin’ for a few weeks now. Some of them are perhaps outdated. But so be it. Again, in no particular order.
*I’m still OUT. Exactly halfway through the season, the Red Sox lie at 44-37. Third place in the American League East, 8 games behind their archrival, the New York Yankees, but still in the wild card mix.
Sure, a season after winning the World Series should we really complain?
Damn right we should! From a team with the highest payroll and full of All-Stars? Absolutely.
Most of the guys look fairly uninterested. Maybe it’s me. But it sure seems like it. We will talk more about specific players later. But we will also look at the manager. I wouldn’t say Alex Cora is disinterested. But there are more head-scratchers this year than last, I can tell you that much.
In any event, I certainly didn’t get excited about the team recently taking 2 out of 3 from the AL Central-leading Minnesota Twins. Because they then lost 2 out of 3 to the rebuilding Toronto Blue Jays. And haven’t exactly put away the very average Chicago White Sox over the last 2 games.
So the question is, when will I buy in? I would guess it won’t be on or about 8/4. The Sox play 14 games in 15 days. ONLY against the Yankees (8) and the Tampa Bay Rays (6). The trading deadline is right in the middle of that, on July 31st.
Ask me where I stand on August 5th.
*Speaking of the Rays, Major League Baseball has given the organization permission to investigate playing some of their home games in future seasons in Tampa and some in…Montreal?
What kind of nonsense is this?
No one goes to games in Tampa…besides opposing teams’ fans, that is. And baseball left Montreal in 2004 because of, well, they couldn’t build a new ballpark in the city, for one. But after revisiting the specifics of that whole fiasco, there were all sorts of other stuff going on…too much to recount here.
But one thing we did not remember was in the last couple of years, the Expos played some games in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
So that worked out well, no?
Seems like the Montreal/Tampa Bay thing should too, right?
*Don’t even get me started on the Sox and Yanks actually traveling to play in London this weekend.
Honestly, what is the point? To satisfy owner John Henry’s Fenway Sports Group? Ugh…
*Crickets on the David Ortiz “investigation” these days, eh?
It sucks that Big Papi got shot, no doubt about it. How can this happen to a legend in his own country? Well, I suppose it can happen anywhere.
It would suck even more if Ortiz was actually involved in some nefarious activities. It doesn’t sound like he was, just some bad judgment if you believe the rumors.
But the legal process? Certainly laughable. First, it was an assassination attempt. Then it was mistaken identity? I don’t think so.
Payoffs are happening for sure. What if Ortiz is part of that machine, covering up whatever he needs to be covering up to save his reputation?
Far fetched? Perhaps. But how can we rule anything out? Especially when it doesn’t seem anyone is really chasing the truth…in the Dominican…or the United States.
*As opposed to the silence on Ortiz, I think we can all be thankful about the recent silence surrounding Dustin Pedroia. The day to day updates on Pedey trying to come back from his knee injury. The continuous setbacks. Basically, everyone dancing around the fact that he is done. Including Pedroia himself.
If the knee problems truly started when he was slid into by Manny Machado a few years back, then sure, that isn’t great. But let’s face it, Pedroia had that kind of frame where he was bound to flame out quickly as he got older. While his “leadership” left a lot to be desired (except for when you ask him and other Red Sox apologists), he did play the game with reckless abandon. There was a pretty good chance he was going to break down a lot earlier than other players.
So Pedroia has stepped away from the club to ponder his future. You would have to think that he knows this is the end of the line. He always played hard, so I will celebrate his play on the field when the time officially comes. I’ll try to forget some of the ridiculous words and actions that came from him over the past few years as well.
I will also guarantee you this: He will be activated in September when rosters expand. Probably DH once or twice (or however long it takes him to say goodbye with a hit). Hell, the Sox may be out of it then, so they can do that for sure. Will he be eating up a 40-man roster spot in place of someone else that could be useful for a playoff push? Or a young kid they need to keep but isn’t ready for the majors? Unlikely, as I can list of about 8-10 guys on the 40-man that are borderline useless now.
So he will get one more MLB at-bat, maybe more, to get that last hit. Probably in a home game. Then he can get pinch run for and leave the field to a standing O.
I can live with that.
*The Yankees picked up slugger Edwin Encarnacion recently for…nothing? Just what they need, another big bat. Sure, their starting pitching has been questionable. But who doesn’t think that they make a huge move for a starter or two before the trade deadline? They have plenty of young talent. They have plenty of money…well, they always have plenty of money, but their payroll is even more flexible these days.
Get ready for that to happen. And then any moves they make there will probably put the division out of reach. Guess that’s why you play the games though…
To be continued…