Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Why I'm still not convinced by the Trail Blazers

I'm sorry... but even though the Trail Blazers won last night, I have no confidence in them winning the series against the Rockets.

Take a look at the game last night at the Rose Garden. It took the game of Brandon Roy's life to beat the Rockets last night. Roy scored 39 points (clearly a career high for a playoff game), and the Blazers STILL only won 107-103.

It took Roy's greatest scoring performance to win by only FOUR?! This series is done. The Blazers still have no answer for Yao Ming in the paint, and most of their front court was in foul trouble. I can't see the Blazers pulling this out.

Take your souvenir pictures on the way out, Portland.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Harrison locked up with a Steel Safe!

It's done! The Steelers lock up Defensive Linebacker James Harrison to a Six Year, $51.7 million deal.

Here are the details from NFL.com:

Harrison will get a guaranteed $20 million, more than any other Steeler outside of Ben Roethlisberger. This also gives Harrison the distinction of being the second highest paid player in team history.

The Contract runs through 2014, however, it is unlikely Harrison will play out the duration of the deal. Harrison will be 31 in the first season of the new deal.


While it's a rather steep price for one guy, it's only right to give the best defensive player on the team his proper reward. One could consider the contract retribution for his efforts in 2008. Either way, it's a great moment for the Steelers and Steeler fans, which ensures Harrison will remain a Steeler as long as he is a productive player.

It's nice to see the Steelers finally hand out contracts on par with the rest of the league. It wasn't always the case going back, and furthermore, the dividends are paying off. Roethlisberger, offered a lucrative 8 year deal last year, only led the Steelers down the field in a 2 minute drill most players dream of. Down a score late with the Super Bowl on the line, Big Ben Roethlisberger engineered a near length of the field drive that put the Steelers ahead and won them a championship!

Enough of my Steeler bias! The deal is a good one and a refreshing sign of fiscal assertiveness from the Steeler organization.

Orlando Hudson: proving once and for all "what goes around comes around!"

A CYCLE!!!!!!!!!!!

After Andre Ethier came so close to one last season for the Dodgers, the LA Dodgers finally... FINALLY have a new player to hit for the Cycle.

In 39 years of Dodger Baseball, no Dodger had been able to hit for the Cycle since Wes Parker's cycle back on May 7, 1970 at the Mets' Shea Stadium. The record withstood several expansions, two huge MLB player strikes, realignment, a steroids scandal, and the 80s. It even survived Disco! Even Shea Stadium itself fell before Wes Parker's long standing "record."

The nearly 40 years between Dodger players to hit for the cycle may be the longest such drought in MLB history. The only team to eclipse such a drought is the San Diego Padres, who never had a player hit for the cycle in its history.

Outside of that, the Dodgers stood alone as the only team to have gone over three decades between when a player hit for the cycle and the next player hit for the cycle. To make things even sweeter, Orlando Hudson was the first Dodger to hit for the cycle at Dodger Stadium.

And how sweet it was! It started with a squib single that was dribbled a total of 50 feet. Hudson legged it out on a close play. Next, a home run that was hit, admittedly, just a few rows past the meager 3 foot wall near the Left Field fould pole. After that, it was a double that split the gap and finally, Hudson went the other way and stroked a triple into the corner. The way the ball was hit, it was roughly 7-10 feet high. There was a split second when it looked like another fly ball, but instead it dropped at just the right spot.

To me, waiting for this cycle was even more arduous than waiting for a no hitter. Oddly enough, both the Padres and Mets share the distinction of having never had a pitcher throw a no-hitter. Anyway, I was fortunate to be at the right place at the right time to witness Dodger history. At last, a cycle for the Modern Era, and who better than the O-Dog, a man who was signed just this off season to chip in. If he was chipping in, he surely was using an Axe! Goodness!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Jay Cutler Gets Traded to the Bears

This is amazing!

The Broncos traded Quarterback Jay Cutler, their franchise quarterback to the Chicago Bears for two first round draft picks, a third round draft pick, AND QB Kyle Orton.

What a huge trade this is. The biggest trade I've seen in quite sometime, if not the entire decade.

Wow! Who'd have thought this would happen and then happen so quickly? To be honest, I was sure the Broncos would wind up keeping Cutler after all the hubub. I stand corrected! I still don't know for sure who got the better end of the deal. I've been convinced Denver made out like bandits, but we won't know for sure until a few years down the line.

Short term, this seems like a winner for the Bears. They gave up a *lot* to get him, but you get a QB who was very solid last season. The only issue is all the mental baggage. My opinion: Jay Cuter is NOT ready for the intense Chicago Media.

Long term, this could be a big move for the Broncos. Provided they learn how to draft, the Broncos have the potential to completely patch up their holes in only two years time. We know they have issues on defense. We know they need a Running Back. We know it might be a good idea to draft another QB for the future. All three items could be aided through the draft.

There's potential here. Not just for Denver, but for Chicago. There is MUCH more on the subject, along with extensive coverage of the trade on today's Dave in the City Podcast! Do listen and enjoy! Meanwhile, there is also a second companion podcast devoted to the Final Four this weekend.