Monday Morning Coffee

December 25, 2017

The Lakers better be damn sure that Paul George and either DeMarcus Cousins or Lebron James are going to be playing here next year.  Otherwise, they are going to look like fools when they trade Jordan Clarkson and Julius Randle for some egg on their face.  Clarkson is a candidate for the NBA’s sixth man of the year.  Randle could be on the verge of being a 20-10 player if Luke Walton came to his senses and didn’t chain him to the bench.  The problem with the Lakers being so transparent about their plan to add two max free agents is that players feel alienated from the organization, and they put up lousy efforts like they did on Saturday night.  That includes KCP, and you’ve gotta love that he’s playing games this month with an ankle monitor and going back to jail when they are over.  I wonder if the guy jumps in an Uber Black on the way back to the slammer every night.  Do you think they let him stop for some In-N-Out along the way?

It was great to see Kobe get both of his jerseys retired last week at Staples.  You could say that retiring two jerseys is over the top, and so was the entire celebration on “Kobe Night”.  However, that’s what made Kobe who he is.  He practiced too much.  He shot too much.  He played too many minutes which got him hurt at the end.  However, that’s what made him the legend that he was.  That’s also what brought tons of fans and legends out on Monday night to honor him.  It’s his blessing and his curse, but it’s also why he is loved and respected by so many.  I also loved Kobe’s film regarding the big man, and the need for big guys to both shoot and defend the 3-pointer.  If they don’t they will become extinct.  The whole video is clips of Porzingas, KAT, AD, and Embiid.  I guess if you aren’t one of these big men, your position is already extinct.

Danilo Gallinari tore a muscle in his ass and will be out indefinitely.  Only a player playing for the Los Angeles Clippers could tear his ass.  The other day at work my boss said it wasn’t ok for employees to bring their kids to work around the holidays because it was unprofessional.  When will Steve Ballmer tell Doc Rivers to stop bringing his kid to work because it’s unprofessional?

The Dodgers have an $8.5 billion television contract.  They are laughing all the way to the bank, while most people can’t even see their games.  Now they are raising ticket prices on their fans.  I get that this is a business, but the Dodgers sure don’t know how to play the PR game very well.  They make it sound like they are saving money for the big free agent class of 2018, yet they have an extreme aversion to paying the luxury tax this year.  Which is it? I guess we’ll find out a year from now.

Is there anything more UCLA than seeing them beat Kentucky on the road? I’m telling you and I’ve been saying it for years: Steve Alford is Steve Lavin reincarnated.  The Bruins show up against great teams every now and again because they have talent, but that talent will forever be undeveloped and without structure.  That means they will never be elite, and they’ll often get punked by scrub teams like they have been in the past.  This team is ticketed for another early round exit in the NCAA Tournament after the committee does them a favor and lets them in.

Remember when USC was a preseason top 10 basketball team? Oh that’s right, you probably don’t because you forgot that the Trojans actually had a men’s basketball team.  Well they were, but they aren’t even in the Top 25 anymore.  USC is losing basketball games to nerds from Princeton, and they have assistant coaches that are headed to the slammer for corruption.  So much for the idea that UCLA and USC basketball could distract us from the dumpster fires that are the Lakers and Clippers.

The Rams won the Jeff Fisher Bowl yesterday by beating the Titans.  You would have thought two teams that were coached by Fisher would battle to tie.  However, this team won’t stop winning, and it’s unbelievable.  Four months ago I would have thought they had a better chance to be one of the worst teams in football this year, and that Jared Goff would be benched.  Instead, they are division champs, and one of the most underrated teams in the NFL.  Todd Gurley single handedly tormented the Titans and fantasy teams around the nation yesterday.  Here’s to hoping the Rams get the support they deserve at the Coliseum when they host a playoff game in two weeks.  Meanwhile, Jeff Fisher is basically saying he deserves credit for leaving the Rams in a good position to win after last year’s coaching debacle.  Fisher deserves about as much credit as I do, just for turning on the TV and watching the Rams every Sunday.

The Chargers are still alive too! They should send some Christmas cookies across town to the Rams after they beat the Titans.  In order for the Bolts to make the postseason, all they need is to beat the Raiders, have the Jags beat the Titans, the Ravens beat the Bengals, the weather to be 79 degrees with a 10% chance of rain, and the sun to rise in the west.  Are you paying attention? There will be a quiz on all this.  The Bolts blew it last week against the Chiefs.  It’s games like that which will eventually prevent Philip Rivers from getting in the Hall of Fame.  Rivers is a quarterback who is going to finish his career with big numbers but no postseason success.  This was a chance to position himself for that success, but he came up short when it mattered.  That’s all too familiar for this Charger team.

Do you realize how much of a genius Bill Belichick is? He traded Jimmy G to the 49ers so they could beat the Jags, allowing the Pats to clinch a first round bye.  Since Carson Wentz tore his ACL, he’s actually thrown more touchdown passes and fewer interceptions than Dak Prescott.  That explains why the Cowboys were eliminated by the Seahawks yesterday.  Now that the Browns have clinched the top pick, just about every NFL prospect in college has declared they are going back to school.  Jameis Wintson is going to beat eating crab legs watching the playoffs at home this year.  Does anybody know what a catch is anymore?







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