Sports Brain Seepage; vol. 6

 Now that the calendar has turned and we are now into the Month of August, it felt that the time is right for the next round of Sports Brain seepage, because as we have seen over the last few weeks, there have been a lot of things happening within the sports world. But never fear, we are just inching closer and closer to football season with each passing day and that is what matters the most. Once we hit football season then we will not have to worry as much about the other things.

 NFL:
 A couple weeks ago we got the news we so wanted to hear, the lock out came to an anti-climactic ending and now we have seen teams rush into training camp, But one of the comical things that we have seen is the rushed and hurried free agent period. There have been some surprises, and some things that just didn’t make sense. Last week, it looked like the Dallas Cowboys had all but wrapped up the biggest free agent in the fray and out of nowhere, the Philadelphia Eagles landed Nnamdi Asomugha. But as far as any other real splashes in free agency that is the only real one that made any waves. Now that we are heading towards an NFL season, fans can finally get giddy with excitement.

Randy Moss is Retireing:
It just came out over the last few hours today that one of the most polarizing figures in football and one of the best receivers of all time is going to retire. It seems surprising that the news broke and there was no fan fare about it, he just had his agent put out a statement saying that he was going to quit football and pursue other things in his life. Randy Moss will go down as one of the best of all time, it is only ashamed that he had to be so polarizing in the early days of his career and made a few bad decisions that will follow him around. But in the end, he will end up being in the Hall of Fame, he has the numbers that are deserving.

 NBA Lockout:
Just when we finally got rid of the NFL lock out, we have to start hearing about the NBA lock out now. But unlike the NFL, this lockout can last as long as it wants to because the NBA as a whole is nowhere near as popular as the NFL, and for the average sports fan who watches anything and everything, they won’t lose any sleep over missing a season of NBA basketball. The only people this will hurt are the players, owners and die hard fans of the NBA. Plus any college seniors that will be playing this season, they will have to hope they have an NBA to look forward too. While that is far off in the distance, it is probably going to last for a long time and kids who want to go pro will have a decision to make. I am sure there will be more news to break on this, but at least for the time being, it looks like a whole group of NBA stars will start tearing up the Basketball leagues throughout Europe to pass the time.

Is the NFL lockout almost over?

 If you have been paying attention to the media lately, then you have been hearing that the NFL lockout could be coming to an end very soon. in fact Dallas Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones made the comment in the media that it was just down to circumcising mosquitoes. What exactly that means, I have no clue. But I would have to figure that it means all the major items are cleared and now it is just having to dot the t’s and cross the i’s on the filler items.

I am not ready to just let my guard down and jump for joy, because at this point there is nothing rock solid. The owners are supposed to meet on Thursday and the league told them to have all the top executives available for what would be a vote to ratify the new deal. But the players aren’t making any statements that make me feel like this is a done deal. Call me skeptical, but I want to hear something positive coming from both sides before I will start planning my upcoming schedule.

I dedicate a huge portion of my weekends to football in general, but until a deal is signed, I am not quite ready to just plan for a day full of NFL football on Sunday. I have no question in my mind that we will see NFL football before to long. I just think they will have to start missing a little training camp and possibly some pre-season games before they make a deal.

Hopefully I am wrong about this and they will sign a deal on Friday. Because I am in dire need of some football to watch.

Sports Brain Seepage Vol. 5

 Well, we are in the Summer doldrums as far as sports go, and it is just reaching a very boring time before we start to slide into football season. But even the glorious thought of football has a black cloud over it right now with the NFL lockout, and then we just got an NBA lockout to go on top of it. So some of these stories may be forced and I do apologize for that, there is very little to write about without any real NFL news and no real NBA news for the foreseeable future.

 Tiger Woods not playing British Open:
 Tiger Woods announced on his website that he has been advised not to play in the Open tournament at Royal St. Georges next week. While this is a very surprising turn of events, I seem to remember that he was saying this would be a small break and he would be back in time for the next major tournament. That was back at the Players, which was in May and with him missing The Open, it has now been two months since Tiger has seen a golf course. This has made me start to wonder, if we will even see Tiger back on a golf course this season. Obviously the aggravation of this injury has been worse than previously thought when he withdrew from The Players championship in May. Either Tiger is more injured than he is letting on, or else he has a huge mental block and is making this injury worse than it is, so he doesn’t have to go play until he feels ready. Either way, each passing month it is looking like we will never see the Tiger of old.

Hines Ward gets a victory rally:
Steelers wide receiver got a victory rally in Pittsburgh for winning the “Mirror Ball Trophy”. Wait…what??? An NFL receiver who was on the team who lost Super Bowl XLV got a victory rally for winning a TV show? I guess the NFL lockout has made people go stir crazy and the thought of celebrating him for winning Dancing with the Stars seemed like a good idea. I hope the NFL big wigs and players union are seeing this…because in a football crazy town like Pittsburgh, this is becoming a joke that they will have a rally for winning a reality show. What’s next? Are they going to celebrate Troy Polamalu for filming a new Head and Shoulders commercial? We really need to see an end to the NFL lockout.

Roger Clemens Trial Starts:
The trial to determine whether or not Roger Clemens lied about using PED’s starts today, wait…they haven’t done this yet? How long has it been since he got busted for this? It has taken a few years for them to decide they want to go ahead and have a trail on this, this is just a sad commentary on our justice system. At this point, there are more people who don’t know who Roger Clemens is than who remember him pre-steroids. But they will determine if he is guilty of lying, and he probably did take steroids, and he probably lied about it, which they will find him guilty, then he will pay a size able fine, go back to his trophy wife and his mansion to live out his life happily.  This just seems like a huge waste of time to even go through this charade.

NFL Lockout drags on:
As the NFL lockout drags on, and it seems like it will never end, we came out of a holiday weekend with the hopes that the Lawyers from both sides are meeting to try and come to an agreement. But Ex NFL players are now filing a suit because they feel that they have been excluded and are trying to halt the talks until they are properly represented. I completely agree that the Ex NFL players should get a better piece of the pie, and get proper benefits, because those guys took a bigger beating with worse equipment.  I have no issue with what they are trying to achieve. But this could be a step that will drag out the NFL lockout into August, it has already been said that around the 15th has to be a drop dead date on a full season, so teams could get in a full training camp. It is looking highly unlikely that anything will be done by then. It is to the point that representatives,lawyers,and anyone else who has been involved in this whole ordeal need to be locked in a conference room, and not allowed to leave until this deal is done. That is probably the only way anything will get done.

Labor strife is a new way of life in professional sports

 As things are sitting right now, we are facing a very good chance at having two of the big four sports in the midst of a lock out at the very same time. While the NBA hasn’t officially made that step, the NFL is in the midst of a lock out and while reports are positive, there are still some hurdles to clear before the lock out is ended. Until the NFL hit their lock out, the NHL was the last sport to go through a labor dispute, and we can see how much damage it did to the sport.

I am not saying that the NFL, or even the NBA will lose as much as the NHL did during it’s lock out, but there will be some negative fall out for both these sports. And I think we all remember how long it took Major League Baseball to regain some of the fans they lost in their last dispute. Bottom line here is that the sports who are in and facing a lock out will see some negative fall out.  Before the baseball dispute in the 90’s, Major League Baseball was America’s past time, but it has taken a lot of work over the last decade to regain some of the popularity it once had.

While the NHL lock out was unfortunate and it hurt the sport in the southern United States, it still has the vast popularity in Canada and northern US. But after they returned from a lock out, it has taken a lot of effort to bring back fans, and even though this past playoff run was fun to watch, they have a lot of work to do to get back to where they were.

I am not saying that the NFL will lose a lot of popularity but if anything holds true to form, there will be more empty seats in stadiums post lock out than there were before. You will have your hardcore fans return without any problems, but there will be those fans who feel that they shouldn’t be forced to suffer through a lock out just because the players and owners can’t split the money properly. It is frustrating that these issues keep cropping up in our sports that we enjoy, but it is part of the hassle.

Right now the NBA is headed for a lock out itself and while it seems to be at an all time high popularity wise, it would be smart if they could find a way to prevent the lock out all together. It would really be a bummer to see two of the big four sports in a lock out at the same time. and as much of a bummer as it is to think about, we are about a year away from another potential MLB lock out.

While as a fan it is no fun to have to hear, and deal with the loss of our favorite sports, it is just part of doing business when you are dealing with greedy billionaire owners and even greedier millionaire players. It would be nice if these guys would just shut up and play.

Sports Brain Seepage; Vol. 1

Every now and then there are too many things going in sports for me to be able to dedicate a full post to it, so I will roll all these type stories into a new feature called the Sports Brain seepage. I hope you enjoy as these may become fairly regular.

NFL Lockout:
We are now into day 55 of the NFL lockout, and we are still waiting for the appeals court to make a decision on whether or not the previous judges decision will be upheld. But the NFL owners are whining that undoing the lock out will be unfair and destroy the league. As this whole ordeal has gone on, I have kind of been backing the players, because they just want the owners to open the books, and all the owners do is deflect the question. If there is a way for the owners to lose money when the slice out one billion before the players get their share, then they need to show proof to everyone. This lockout could be settled real quick if the owners would just open the books. Sure, there are more issues at hand, but every player who has spoken has said this is the #1 issue. Either way both sides need a swift kick in the nuts and need to get this settled, because if any games are missed, then the NFL will suffer the same problem that baseball took a full decade to recover from. And that is struggling attendance and lack of interest.

 Death of a Former NBA Player:
News broke earlier today that for NBA player Robert “Tractor” Traylor was found dead in his apartment in Puerto Rico. Traylor spend 7 years in the NBA and had played for Cleveland,New Orleans and Charlotte. While he wasn’t a superstar player, he had his moments on the court. It is always tragic to hear about a young mans death in any situation, Robert Traylor was 34 years old and he was suspected to have had a heart attack. He leaves behind a wife and two sons.

NBA Playoff thoughts:
The Boston Celtics are on the ropes and have to win tonight to be able to force game 5 back in Boston. But with the health of Rondo being questionable, they will be in a tough situation. This is probably not going to go well for the Celtics tonight, but I am sure they will put up a better fight than the Lakers did in their elimination game.

Memphis and Oklahoma City is becoming one of the more entertaining series in the playoffs. This one has the potential to go the full 7, and that is a great thing for the NBA, and also a very good thing for the resting Mavericks who are sitting at home waiting.

Chicago has a chance to end their series with the Hawks tomorrow night in Atlanta, but the Hawks should come out inspired and play with the same wreck less abandon they have showed throughout the series. I don’t doubt that Chicago will win the series, but I would like to see this one go the full 7 if possible, just because of how entertaining it has been. But then again, if the Bulls finish it off tomorrow, then we won’t have to see those disgustingly annoying road uniforms with “ATL” plastered on the front of the Hawks jerseys. either way, this is a good series and the fans deserve a full 7.

College Football:
Today the news came down that the BCS is going to allow the Fiesta Bowl to stay in the BCS, but they are going to fine them $1 million for their indiscretions. This seems like a slap in the face to college football fans across the country, because they were so blatant in the disregard and scandals that they should have been ousted. But then again I am sure the BCS didn’t want to allow the Cotton Bowl in because they knew that the game being at Cowboys stadium would be a better attraction of every BCS bowl except for the Rose Bowl.

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