Tag Archives: live sports

It’s Time For The Magic To Trade Dwight Howard

The NBA Draft is coming up this week and that means many story lines for many teams will take a twist through trades and picks.  The biggest possible trade story leading up to the Draft is will the Magic trade Dwight Howard away for some great picks or even top level players.  I have no faith that the Magic will take advantage of teams wanting Howard and wanting him now.   Teams like the Houston Rockets are trading players and moving up in the 1st round with 3 picks in the top 20 as of Tuesday.  Howard’s contract is up in 2013 and the Rockets want him prior to his contract expiring.  The Magic might have a good opportunity to do something about their “Dwight Drama”.

Dwight Howard on draft day 2004 after being selected with the 1st overall pick by the Magic.
(Getty Images)

The Story of Dwight Howard and the Magic has been a complicated one.  The Magic drafted Howard out of high school in 2004 with the 1st overall pick.  Howard over the years has developed into one of the best big men in the game and has had some success with the team.  Howard led the Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals where they were defeated by the Los Angeles Lakers in 5 games.  The Magic have been contenders in the Eastern Conference for the last few years in large part to Howard.  Dwight Howard has however also brought a lot of controversy to Orlando with his talent.  He had a very public feud with the Magic’s former Head Coach Stan Van Gundy.  It got really ugly during last season and Van Gundy was fired earlier this summer.  Howard also brought drama near the trade deadline when he was not signing his clause to come back for his final year of his contract.  He ended up signing hours before the deadline and the Magic did not trade him.  It was a smart move for the Magic to put the pressure on Howard and to not trade him at the time when a trade for him would not yield enough in return for the Magic.

I say the time to pull the trigger is on draft night.  The Magic could possibly be offered some really good deals and should strongly consider every one they receive.  The Magic need not look to far into their past to be reminded why they should get rid of Howard before his contract expires.

In 1996 Shaq left the Magic for the Lakers in a similar situation where the team was not willing to give him exactly what he wanted and headed elsewhere.  Shaq left and the Magic had nothing to show for it, they would have gotten a mega trade if they would have just looked around instead of fooling themselves that they could resign him.

Dwight Howard has made it no secret that he would like to play for the soon to be Nets of Brooklyn or for the Dallas Mavericks.  The relationship between the Magic and Howard is just too volatile for it to continue.  The Magic for a long time have been fooling themselves again that like Shaq that they can resign the star.  I think there is no way he would sign with the Magic again even if the money was right.  Howard is an awesome talent but he is just not going to stay with the team any longer than he needs to. The Magic cannot afford to have Howard leave and get nothing in return.  He is too good of a talent and a player of his caliber could yield players that could build this team for the future. The Magic owe it to the city of Orlando and their fans to send Howard packing.  So as the saying goes “THE TIME IS NOW!”

The Spurs Are Boring, But They Are Good

The San Antonio Spurs are one of the least entertaining teams to watch in all of sports.   The Spurs are in one word “Boring”.  They have been that way for many years.  It is due to a combination of playing a methodical and a very non flashy style of basketball and the lack of charismatic stars.

They have one of the best centers in the NBA Tim Duncan.  Duncan has had a great Career and will be in the Hall Of Fame one day. The unfortunate thing is Duncan has no charisma at all and never says anything that is not obvious when being asked questions in interviews. Their other stars Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili are not much better.

San Antonio Spurs Star Tim Duncan
(Getty Images)

There is one thing you cannot dispute though,  the Spurs are really good.  They have especially excelled this year in the playoffs.  They swept the Utah Jazz in the first round of the post season.  They continued into the second round where they swept the L.A. Clippers and their superstar Chris Paul.

On Tuesday night the San Antonio Spurs defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder by a score of 120-111. With that victory the Spurs are up on the Thunder 2-0 in the Western Conference Finals.  The Spurs are undefeated this postseason.  They have won 10 straight games and while they have not been exciting while doing so, it is an impressive feat.

Will we see the Spurs in the NBA Finals?  Probably but the NBA will not be happy about it.  The ratings for the NBA Finals have been declining over the last few years.  The Spurs will likely drive those numbers down.  Even with the Miami Heat or Boston Celtics as their opponents it could be a rather sleepy Championship Series.

For now I suggest you get your pillows ready.  The Spurs are not going anywhere for now, which means the boring brand of Spurs basketball is going to sweep across the nation and put viewers in a NyQuil type sleep state.

Can David Wright Finish Above .400?

The baseball season is about to complete its second month.  There is a potential story brewing that could dominate the sports media this summer.  David Wright and the possibility that he could end the season with an above .400 batting average.  While the New York Mets have been average this season and have not had a great season in a couple of years,  David Wright could vault the team into the sports media mainstream for the next few months.

New York Mets Third Baseman David Wright
(Marc Serota/Getty Images North America)

Wright has played in 38 games as the Third Baseman for the Mets this year, and  as of May 22nd is batting .415.  Wright has been incredibly hot and extremely valuable for a Mets team that has fallen down a bit over the last couple of years.

The Mets are currently 22-20 and are 3.5 games back in the very tough N.L. East.  Whether the Mets will contend this year is hard to say but based on the recent past looks unlikely.  The Mets caught a lot of flack last season after it was found out the their new stadium might have been paid for by many people who’s live were ruined by the fraudulent financial scams of Bernie Madoff.  Wright could help the team move on and put that in their past this season.  The New York Mets need a player like David Wright at this point and need him to do well and that is exactly what he is doing.

The .400 single season batting average is one of the most elusive marks in all of sports.  The last man to hit above .400 in one season was Boston Red Sox legend and Hall of Famer Ted Williams.  Williams hit .406 in 1941.  Since then no one else has done it,  Tony Gwynn did come close in 1994 when he finish with .394 in 1994 but that is a mute point given the fact it was a strike shortened season.  Royal’s Hall of Famer George Brett finished with a .390 batting average in 1980.

Wright will have to continue to be hot through what is  a very long and grueling baseball season.  As Wright continues toward the .400 mark and the season gets further along the media pressure will heat up.  That could be and has been something that has affected many players going towards not only this mark but all records in baseball.  The Mets are positioned in one of the biggest sports markets in the country and you have to know it will be like a zoo towards August if Wright can still be close to the mark by then

Not very many players have had a batting average this high at this point in the season.  So it is definitely time to start watching the Mets and David Wright to see how this progresses.  David Wright is an amazing player and really deserves to reach such a mark.  His stock has already risen and we are not even half way through this season.  So as the season moves along into the summer keep an eye out for David Wright he might just shock the sports world.

Josh Hamilton After 40 Games

The Texas Rangers have played 40 games so far this season. They hold a record of 25 wins and 15 losses. The team is 5 games ahead of the second place team in the A.L. West. The real story this season for the Rangers is their main star Josh Hamilton and his hot streak, or should we call it the beginning of a hot season.

The Texas Rangers Josh Hamilton
(Getty Images)

Josh Hamilton has a .392 batting average, 18 home runs, 45 RBI’s, 33 runs and 3 stolen bases. Of the 40 games the Rangers have played this season Hamilton has played 37 of those games. Hamilton is on pace for 72 home runs, 180 RBI’s, 132 runs and 12 stolen bases. He has already hit 4 home runs in one game this season. Now I don’t need to tell you that it would be one of the best seasons we have ever seen. It should be noted however, Hamilton has never hit more than 32 home runs in one season, but at the same time he has never been this hot.

The big stat that has everyone’s attention are the amount of home runs he has complied so far. His home run hitting this season has reminded me a lot of Ken Griffey Jr.’s record pace in the 1994 season. However Griffey’s season ended in June when the players went on strike. Hamilton will not have anything other than an injury to hold him back this particular season. His pace is impressive but would not be a record. However if he could have hot streaks from time to time, he could very well take the home run record of 73 held by Barry Bonds in 2001.

If Josh Hamilton could take the home run record it would be an incredible thing to happen to Major League Baseball. We all know how tainted the record held by Barry Bonds is after the truth about him taking Performance Enhancing Drugs came out a few years ago. Hamilton would clean up the record having played in an era with stricter testing and a lower tolerance of P.E.D.’s. Hamilton also would be a great story of a man who has battled demons and while he will never be clear of them, made things right and triumphed over them.

Hamilton has had a crazy last 13 years. He was drafted 1st overall in the 1999 June MLB draft by the Tampa Bay Rays. He struggled with a drug addiction and alcoholism. Hmilton never fully adapted to the system in order to become a Major League star. The Rays gave him numerous chance but had no choice but to let him go after 4 years of working with him. Hamilton battled his demons and came back to baseball in the Independent League and later got a contract with the Cincinnati Reds in 2007. He played so well that year that he was signed by the Texas Rangers in 2008. He had an incredible showing in the 2008 MLB Home Run Derby and caught the attention of the sports world. Hamilton has developed into a superstar and is the face of the Rangers Franchise.

The season is only 1/4 complete though. He could calm down, or he could keep going. He is the heart of this team and I feel how Josh Hamilton goes so does the team. The team has made the World Series the last 2 seasons. I totally believe they could make another appearance this year and actually win the championship this time.

Josh Hamilton is what is good about baseball right now. He is a man that has fallen down numerous times, picked himself up every time and succeeded. He will continue to garner attention this year from all baseball fans. I believe the baseball world will rally behind him and if he is close to breaking Barry Bonds’ record near the end of the season and push him to breaking it. Hamilton is already a hero but he could become the single season home run hero by the end of the summer.

The Miami Marlins Are on Fire!

Marlins pitcher Anibal Sanchez during Thursday’s victory over the Huston Astros
(Getty Images)

If you have been living under a rock for the past two weeks here is a message for you,  the Miami Marlins are on fire!  The Marlins have won 9 of there last 10 games.  They just came off of their best road trip ever taking 8 of 9 games during the trip. First sweeping the Giants in San Francisco, followed by a sweep of the Padres in San Diego and finishing the road trip taking 2 of 3 games from the Huston Astros.  The road trip was the best in franchise history.

The pitching of Carlos Zambrano is probably one of the most surprising things to have happened for the team in the past 2 weeks.  Zambrano recorded a complete game win earlier this week against the Astros.  Many expected him to fall apart this year and pitch poorly based on his past in Chicago playing for the Cubs.  He is showing all of the critics that he still has it and is here to stay.

Their other pitching stud Anibal Sanchez continued his winning ways picking up his 4th win on the road trip.  He pitched a total of 14 innings with 13 strikeouts.  Sanchez leads the team in strikeouts with 46 for the season.  He has really blossomed over the years into a big time pitcher and he is still highly underrated.

On the offensive side of the ball the Marlins have come alive.  Giancarlo Stanton snapped out of his funk blasting 5 home runs and bringing in 8 RBI’s on the road trip.   Second baseman Omar Infante proved very valuable with 10 hits, 1 home run and 8 RBI’s.  Infante is currently batting .342 for the season and does not seem to be slowing down any time soon.  The offense was bright and really picked up the optimism of Marlins Nation.

The Marlins defeated the New York Mets on Friday at home by of score of 6-5.  The Fish have been dominating most of the games they have played this past two weeks.  The other games where they didn’t squash their opponents they have come back to win in the late innings.

The Marlins are going into their Saturday game against the Mets holding a record of 17 wins and 15 losses.  They are only 3 games back from first place in the NL East.  The lead in the NL East is currently held by the Washington Nationals and the Atlanta Braves.  That spot could be held by the fish in about a week if they keep up their superb play up.

The team started the season with a rocky first month.  They finished the month of April with an under .500 win percentage.  They received little production from power hitter Giancarlo Stanton,  which was a huge and disappointing surprise.   Their big time free agent Heath Bell was not pitching well from the closing spot and blowing games.  Jose Reyes also had his problem in the form of getting hits. Things did not look great after the first month of baseball.

A new month brought new hope and a chance for redemption.  And boy have the Marlins taken advantage of the restart in the form of a long road trip.  I think this is the team that we were meant to see, and will continue to see for the rest of the season.  They are finally heading places and the fans are getting excited about their prospects of winning.  The goal for this season is taking the NL East crown for the first time in franchise history and surging through the playoff en route to their 3rd World Series title.  The season is long and things could change, but I have confidence that what has happened in the last 2 weeks we will be seeing more of deep into the season.  So there is only one thing to be said “NL East watch out the Fish are coming”.

Stoudemire And The Knicks Had No Chance Anyway

Amare Stoudemire
Getty Images

It was made official today that The Knicks Amare Stoudemire is out for game 3 of their series against the Heat.  The Knicks star injured himself when he punched a fire extinguisher case on Monday after the teams 104-84 loss in Miami.  The Knicks are currently down 2-0 in the opening playoff series.  The knicks have had to see this coming.

This Knicks team was destined for failure this year.  They have not played well as a unit consistently all season.  The only bright spot the Knicks had during the season was the rise of Jeremy Lin.  The “Linsanity”craze did not even last a month.  They almost did not make the playoffs until they had a so-so April.  This is just another example of how this team is doomed, at least for this season.

The first two games against the Heat should be all anyone needs to see to realize they were never going to beat the Heat and advance.  I have no idea why it seems that everyone is shocked by this happening.  The media has been all over this story of Stoudemire missing game 3.  It really does not matter though.  The Knicks had no chance, even if Stoudemire was healthy he would have done nothing to get the Knicks wins over the Heat.  There is really only one story here, it is the immaturity and anger issues that Stoudemire possesses.

The series was likely going to end in the Heat sweeping the Knicks.  The Heat are just too strong for just about any team in the east, especially the Knicks. It will all be over for the Knicks in less than a week from now.  So lets put the story of the 2011-2012 Knicks to rest now.

Bryce Harper Is Ready For The Big Leagues

Getty Images

The Washington Nationals have been playing great this year.  Surprising many, but the excitement has just begun.  On Friday the Nationals called up their 19 year old phenom Bryce Harper from Triple A Syracuse.  He was called up when Ryan Zimmerman was placed on the DL this week.  Harper is set to make his MLB debut on Saturday when he will be placed in the line up for in a game against the Dodgers in Los Angeles.  Harper’s debut on Saturday is the most anticipated debut of any player since Ken Griffey Jr. in 1989.

Harper was thrust into the national spotlight in May of 2009 when he was on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine.  He was touted as being the next big thing in baseball, and possibly one of the best baseball players ever.  Later the year he left high school at 16 years old to obtain his GED in time for the 2010 June Draft. He had a short stint at a junior college before the Nationals selected him 1st overall in the June Draft.

Harper has everything one needs to be a great player.  He also has all of the hype as well.  Although some have questioned his maturity during his time in the minors.  He has been called “spoiled”, and been said to have acted arrogant on a number of occasions.  This is nothing new for the sports world.  There have been many sports stars with bad reputations that have flourished to become hall of fame players.  I feel he will grow up a lot in the big leagues and will mature very quickly.  While he has played well in the minors he has usually needed time to get settled in at each level.  This may be no different as the jump from Triple A to the majors is a big one.  I think even if he does struggle in the beginning he will ultimately turn out to be an incredible player at the big league level.

The Nationals want to win and they want to do it now.  That is why they feel this call up is the right decision.  I totally agree with them bringing him up and putting him in the line up.  Saturday is going to be a big night for Harper and the Nationals, who finally get to reap the benefits of this highly touted and paid phenom.