Category Archives: San Diego Chargers

San Diego Chargers

Though he didn’t play in CLE as long as others Dennis Eckersley.

Only because when I was a kid and they had those get a photo with a player before the game days at the old Municipal Stadium I had gotten one with Eckersley.

For most part don’t care they are the ‘jersey’ they wear. Never understood the over attachment. Probably an interesting twist to the list would be players who ‘left’ on their own volition (Free Agent, et al) versus those who were traded, a la, Rocky Colavito.

But looking back on it those teams were garbage. Behind the scenes was it an elaborate plan for LeBron to leave, the Cavs to tank, and rebuild then get position to trade for key players? Who knows? But LeBron did bring us a championship, and you were at that parade even if you won’t admit it. The moment he chased down Igoudala from 30 feet back and blocked him at the rim, and then Irving hit that three, things changed in this town. We weren’t going to collapse and have another “The” moment.

Here’s some of what is on tap at Carver Arena:

Opening Weekend: Blackhawks mascot Tommy Hawk appears, tickets are 2 for $20 and 1,500 magnetic schedules will be distributed as the team honors the memory of late owner Bruce Saurs.

Special jerseys: The Rivermen will wear a jersey to honor the military on Nov. 11 — Veterans Day — and all retired or active duty service members with ID will get a free ticket.

Ravens schedule 2017: Baltimore’s fate could rest on another rematch in Pittsburgh

The Week 10 bye will come right on time, but also is sandwiched between two road games, including to Green Bay. Their game against the Texans is their first Monday night home game since 2012 бн when they won the Super Bowl.

Besides the Sunday night game in Pittsburgh, the quirk in their late schedule is in Week 16, the Saturday afternoon before Christmas at home against the Colts, always an emotional situation for Baltimore fans. They finish against the Bengals again; they lost what turned out to be a meaningless finale last season.

Roberto Aguayo was released by the Buccaneers this week after a year of unfulfilled expectations. After being the most accurate kicker in college history, the Bucs traded up to select Aguayo in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft, and did not play like a second-round kicker.

His struggles continued into 2017 when he missed a field goal and an extra point in the team’s first preseason game. After that, coach Dirk Koetter lit into his kicker with some strong comments, and a day later he was released.

Aguayo’s journey is disappointing because he had a lot of pressure on him early. He was mocked and condemned by fans, all the way until his exit. Making the departure a bit more awkward, perhaps, was the fact HBO cameras were there to capture it all for their series “Hard Knocks.”

A trailer for Tuesday night’s episode was released earlier in the day, and it shows the kicker’s final days in a Bucs uniform.

The first takeaway is Chris Baker, a defensive tackle, openly mocking Aguayo’s kicking struggles as he lines up a kick. Baker accurately predicts Aguayo will miss the kick wide left, and then laughs when he’s correct. dolphins_018

Steph Curry makes no-look reverse layup against Wizards

Stephen Curry has been back to his freakish self as of late, and that trend continued for Sunday night against the Wizards.

The Warriors’ MVP guard went behind the back to push past the first line of defense and then ran directly into a trio of Wizards around the rim. Instead of kicking out, he flipped in a reverse layup without looking at the hoop in vintage 2016 Steph style.

The problem for Trimble continues to be a lack of forward momentum in the development of his game. Trimble is a similar player to the one he was as a freshman and sophomore: a good pick-and-roll guard that looks for his shot first, then plays off it to distribute, with physical limitations that may hinder him against more elite athletes.

His game against Xavier showcased all of these factors. On some level, he’s not going to shoot 1 of 9 from 3 in every game, which made this an outlier unlucky performance. But he’s also not the high-level shooter he showed as a freshman when he hit nearly 42 percent of his 3s.

Trimble is a tremendous kid that basically everyone who has met him roots for. He is an offensive leader who likes the ball in his hands at the end of the game. But right now, he’s just not quite ready for the NBA. That’s fine. There are recent examples, such as Yogi Ferrell, of a player reaching that level by returning for his senior year as a point guard surrounded by a ton of returning talent, and I’d hope Trimble does the same while making a run toward Maryland’s all-time scoring record next season.steelers_119

NBA community says goodbye to Paul Pierce after his final game

With the Clippers’ Game 7 loss to the Jazz on Sunday, Paul Pierce’s career came to an end.

After one NBA title, 10 All-Star appearances and many memorable moments with three teams, the 39-year-old will be walking away from the game. He played 19 seasons with 170 playoff games under his belt while scoring 26,397 career points.

After the game, the NBA community reminisced on Pierce’s time in the NBA.

Schroder and Millsap combined for 56 points to lead the Hawks to an 116-98 win against the Wizards on Saturday in Game 3, cutting Washington’s lead in the first-round series to 2-1.

Wall scored 29 points on 10-of-12 shooting from the field, but none of his teammates, including the loquacious Morris, matched his effort. Morris scored nine points on 4 of 14 from the field. He was mostly quiet until after the game when he dropped some more words in the verbal warfare between the two squads.

“He’s a crybaby,” Morris said of Millsap. “Get all the calls, and you a crybaby.”

Millsap had 29 points to go along with 14 rebounds and five assists. Before he was apprised of Morris’ comments, Millsap told the media that he enjoyed the matchup.

A ring is hard to come by in this age of basketball, though. The Warriors have built a super team in the West, and LeBron James in the East has been to six straight NBA Finals, showing no signs of slowing down. Even Lowry admitted it’s practically impossible to get by James.

Via The Vertical from last Friday, after Game 3:

“They’ve got LeBron James. Nobody’s closing the gap on him. I mean, that’s it right there: They’ve got LeBron James and nobody’s closing the gap on him.
falcons_043

Tim Tebow homers in Port St. Lucie Mets debut, passes Michael Jordan in career home runs

I’m sorry for this Tim Tebow news update, but here we go:

Tebow has done it. He’s hit a home run in his second game with the Port St. Lucie Mets, and he’s now better than Michael Jordan.

It’s Tebow’s fourth career home run, surpassing fellow baseball great and surefire, one-day Cooperstown denizen Michael Jordan, who had a career tally of three.

At this rate, the Mets could use all the help they could get — on the mound, not as much on offense.

The Metropolitans are in the middle of a historic month: They’ve mashed more home runs in June than any other month in franchise history. That’s certainly something. Maybe Tebow wants in on the action.

In any case, all hail Tebow.

The relationship between the Knicks and rising star Kristaps Porzingis has been turbulent in recent months, as Porzingis skipped his exit interview in April. Well, Porzingis’ time in New York could be nearing its end. Phil Jackson is open to the possibility of trading Porzingis as the “frenzy of interest is growing,” according to The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Sixers landed the No. 1 pick for the second year in a row, thanks to a predraft trade with the Celtics. In return, Boston receives the No. 3 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, in addition to either the Lakers’ 2018 first-round pick or the Kings’ 2019 first-round pick. The Celtics will receive the Lakers’ pick if it falls between No. 2 and No. 5. If it doesn’t, they’ll get the Kings’ unprotected first-round pick in 2019.
warriors_051-115x115

Somewhere where he can escape and just play hockey.

Now, let’s add the two stars they must have as part of their core: Paul and Griffin. Because of the rising collective bargaining agreement, both are set to make more than $30 million their first season. Paul — who commands 35 percent of the salary cap — is well over $35 million.

Let’s imagine a scenario where the Clippers bring back everyone. That includes re-signing Redick, bringing back likely free agent Luc Mbah a Moute (he has a player option we expect him to decline), and adding a player with the taxpayer’s mini mid-level exception.

Pull factors. There’s a few of those for Arizona. The fact that Price can join a team on the way up and push it to the next level. The fact that off the ice there is the entire desert and ranches aplenty for Carey to keep his horses. But most of all, there’s the fact that Arizona is a little more easy-going than Montreal. Price can come to a place where he isn’t expected to carry a franchise on his back and a media who won’t push him under the spotlight for every single loss. Somewhere where he has young stars to share the load.

Somewhere where he can escape and just play hockey.

Push factors. See the above in reverse. Price wants to stay in Montreal, and that’s admirable. But maybe Montreal is less happy for him to stay than they have been in the past.

Then there’s the cap space issue. How much can Montreal offer Price? How much are they willing to offer him and for how long? And how much longer is Price willing to take the uncertainty, pressure, upheaval and blame in Montreal from a marketplace that is still expecting him to singlehandedly carry them to a Stanley Cup?

nike_steelers_2246

Roy Williams on Donald Trump: ‘Our president tweets out more bulls*** than anyone I’ve ever seen’

Roy Williams has a way with words. The North Carolina coach gave the world another memorable quote on Thursday afternoon after his Tar Heels pounded Miami in their first game at the ACC tournament.

The ACC tournament is in Brooklyn this season after years in Greensboro, N.C. Williams was asked about the impact of the move to New York. This is how he answered:

If we have any luck, Van Mil will find one of the two and finally become a major leaguer. If baseball has some beauty left over, he’ll find both of them and become a dominant major leaguer.

It’s the story of baseball wrapped in a 7’1” shell, at least, and it’s worth watching — even if you think you’ve watched tall pitchers before. You have, but not like this. There still might be chapters left to write, and the WBC came at the perfect time for us to gawk with a sense of wonder and curiosity.

By 2005, a 26-year-old Nowitzki had already tallied 11,106 career points. That season brought his epochal game-tying layup in Game 7 against the Spurs, as well as heartbreak in the 2006 finals. But it starts on a lighter note that preseason, when Knicks rookie David Lee is convinced he needed to show something against the established Nowitzki.

“David Lee just thought it was the most important thing to guard Dirk, and Dirk just torched him,” Cuban says.

Nowitzki’s reaction, in Cuban’s recollection, is, “Who the fuck is David Lee Roth, and what’s he doing here?”

For what it’s worth, Lee remembered this game well but says that Cuban has embellished it a bit — in classic Cuban fashion.

9

2017 NFL Combine: 5 players who need a big week

In Indianapolis this week, players can use the Scouting Combine to vault their stock in the 2017 NFL Draft. While some players like Myles Garrett of Texas A&M or Jonathan Allen of Alabama should be secure with their draft position, these five players could help themselves the most.

DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame

Since the college football season has ended, much of the buzz for top quarterbacks has centered on Mitch Trubisky of North Carolina and Deshaun Watson of Clemson. Because Notre Dame finished with a 4-8, Kizer has been out of the spotlight since November. When he did play, he completed less than 60 percent of his passes, and 50.7 in his last two games against Southern California and Virginia Tech. At one point he was even benched last season. To call Kizer inconsistent is an understatement. Some do like him lot, though. Daniel Jeremiah of NFL Network rates him as the top quarterback and he’s not the only one:

The Titans are one of two teams with two first-round picks, thanks to a trade that gave the Los Angeles Rams the No. 1 pick in 2016. The Eagles will own either the No. 14 or No. 15 pick, dependent upon a coin flip between the Indianapolis Colts and Minnesota Vikings on Friday.

“Brandon’s commitment and passion for football is undeniable,” said Jets owner Woody Johnson. “His drive to support mental health awareness is beyond admirable. We appreciate his contributions to the organization and wish him the best.”

Going into the season, Kaaya carried some buzz as a potential first-round pick. Statistically, Kaaya had a nice season, completing 62 percent of his passes and throwing 27 touchdowns to only seven interceptions. Digging deeper, there are some concerns. When pressured, Kaaya’s footwork falls apart, and his accuracy goes down. Since he’s not much of a mover in the pocket, that can be a problem. 13

Shields was one of Green Bay’s most reliable and effective defensive backs in recent years

The Eagles are in dire need of salary cap space, and while McKelvin was a carryover from Buffalo and familiar with Jim Schwartz’s defense, injury issues (concussion, hamstring) limited him to 12 games. At 31 years old, Philadelphia is going younger as it searches for needed improvements.

Jared Odrick, defensive end, Jacksonville Jaguars

Odrick’s cap number was the second-highest on Jacksonville’s roster, and as Gregg Rosenthal wrote, he would probably be best used as a rotational defensive end. For a Jaguars team that spent plenty in recent years, Odrick was a prime candidate to get cut as Jacksonville trims the unnecessarily expensive contracts from its roster moving forward.

Sam Shields, cornerback, Green Bay Packers

Shields was one of Green Bay’s most reliable and effective defensive backs in recent years, but concussion-related issues in 2016 — Shields played in just one game all season — leave him with an uncertain future, though the corner said he hopes to play in 2017.

Offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur, who took over the duties midway through the season, believes a full offseason in the program will help the rapport between Bradford and his receivers, allowing the passing attack to make a leap forward.

“When he comes back [for the Vikings’ offseason program in April], him having the ability to sit down with the players he’s going to play with through the offseason, we’ll do things that fit his eye, that fit with what we do,” Shurmur said last week, via ESPN.com.

That looks simple—motion across the line, then an out route—but it only played out that way because Engram executed it with such precision. Notice not just how sharp Engram was into his break, but how quickly he turned his hips and got his head around for the pass. This was a timing route all the way, with a defender to Engram’s inside shoulder and a DB closing from about 12 yards deep.

During McDermott’s tenure as defensive coordinator of the Panther

This might be an unpopular opinion, but tagging Gilmore just doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense for Buffalo. The team’s new head coach, , has traditionally built his defenses inside-out, meaning he places a high value on members of the front seven and doesn’t put as much emphasis on having talent in the secondary.

During McDermott’s tenure as defensive coordinator of the Panthers, eight of the their 10 defensive selections in the first three rounds of the draft were players in the front seven. In fact, the only two defensive backs selected in the first three rounds came last year, when the team was already set at the linebacker and defensive line positions.

The Bills already have limited cap space, so using the tag on a cornerback seems against McDermott’s nature. I could be totally wrong on this, but based on everything we’ve seen from McDermott to this point, I would guess Gilmore will be playing for a new team next season. If true, rumors that the corner is looking for top-five money all but guarantee Gilmore will leave Buffalo.

Five linemen with starting experience return, including two-year left tackle Jeremiah Culbreth. Eight of 11 names from last year’s two-deep are back, and Georgia transfer Jake Edwards joins the mix.

When you look at things from that perspective, a bounce-back is possible. But Georgia Southern has lost the benefit of the doubt, and Cook has to earn it back.

Despite selecting defensive tackle Vernon Butler in the first round of last year’s draft, the Panthers will make a strong push to re-sign one of the stalwarts on their defense. Coach Ron Rivera already acknowledged the franchise tag is the likeliest option if the two sides can’t agree to a long-term deal.