Monday Morning Coffee

February 25, 2019

I know I’ve been pretty optimistic about the Lakers getting back in the playoffs, but it’s hard to after this weekend. Lebron has gone from throwing his teammates under the bus to driving the team bus away without Luke Walton on it. I have no problem with Lebron questioning the commitment of certain guys on the team, but it is fair to question his commitment to playing defense. It’s hard to imagine a team with Lebron James on it not making the playoffs, but if it happens, the blame falls on both James and the front office. They are the lunatics that put this roster together, when most of the lunatics on this team should be put in an insane asylum. Better start getting some W’s fast.

Then there’s the Clippers, are who still clinging to a playoff spot the way that red head clung to Vince Vaughn in Wedding Crashers. The Clips are actually living proof that tanking occurs at the front office level, but not at the player level. How else do you explain the team trading their best player for a bag of potato chips, yet the players are still playing hard enough to be in the playoffs? I don’t buy Steve Ballmer’s act for one second, when he came on Inside The NBA last week and said that he wants the team to make the playoffs. That appearance made me think that Ballmer has to be doing cocaine.

To baseball where the Angels have to be in total denial to not be devastated by Mike Trout’s comments on his future with the Halos. Last week Trout said “I don’t want to comment on that” when asked if he wanted to remain in an Angels uniform after the next two seasons. I’d give this one more season, then move him for as many assets as you can get. This isn’t the NBA folks. One player doesn’t make or break your franchise, even if Trout is one of the best of all-time. This has nothing to do with money. I think the Angels would pay what they had to, but Trout sounds like a guy who has already decided he’s going to play for the Phillies. On the bright side though, the Angels would probably get some really good Major League talent for him. Good thing Artie Moreno is committed to lowering beer prices because the fans are going to need a lot of booze to get through this season.

Don’t be fooled by the rumors folks. The Dodgers aren’t going to sign Bryce Harper. Andrew Friedman will show up naked at a nerdy Star Wars convention before signing anybody to a 10-year deal, let alone one for over $300 million. This is nothing but smoke and mirrors to make the Dodgers look like they tried to appease their fans.

UCLA managed to beat Oregon on Saturday night at Pauley. Oregon was probably too blinded by the ugliness of their jerseys to play well. As if the Bruins Basketball Program isn’t embarrassing enough these days, the athletic department thought it would be a good idea to put bright white signs on the empty seats in the arena. Brilliant! Let’s make it 10x more obvious that nobody goes to watch UCLA basketball anymore! I think the crowd cared a lot more about that free sandwich that is normally 2 dollars than the Bruins have cared about basketball all season. By the way, UCLA’s combined basketball and football record in 2018-2019 is 17-23. That’s 2nd worst in the Pac-12 to only Cal. Nice job Dan Guerrero.

So Zion Williamson’s shoe exploded on Wednesday night and everybody thinks he shouldn’t play college basketball anymore. I’m sure everyone that paid $3k for a ticket to that game had their head explode as well. Look, I’ve come around to the idea that the NCAA should compensate their athletes in some form or another that’s more than scholarships. However, Zion is also using the College Basketball platform in some ways, just like the NCAA is using him. If he doesn’t like that, he can go to Europe to get paid. Zion is also the exception to the rule. For every Zion, Lebron, and Kobe, there’s a ton of other kids that think they are going to the NBA but really have no chance. Allowing high school kids to enter the NBA draft will only continue to ruin the quality of NBA and NCAA basketball.

It’s only February and the USC football program is insisting on making itself a public disaster. Last week they got a bunch of concerned alums together and Lynn Swann could only make people feel worse. He basically said success is defined as keeping the program out of trouble and graduating kids. He didn’t even say winning the Pac-12. He also implied that Clay Helton is a guy who is mediocre but good enough to get the job done. Well at least if you paid $85 for that event you got to hear Swann sing. The Trojans are now resorting to humiliating themselves and their alums both on and off the field.

In the NFL, I know you’re asking the question: should the Rams trade for Antonio Brown? The answer is definitely not. Sean McVay is a genius and all, and while he’d probably get Brown to shut up and play good football, it’s just not necessary. The Rams need to spend their money keeping their offense together, and upgrading their defense. Not on some prima donna receiver who should be keeping his phone in airplane mode.

The Oscars went down last night in case you didn’t know. The show is much better without a host. How was Ron Miller, the former CEO of Disney who just passed away, not honored? Those saying Rami didn’t deserve best actor “because he lip-synched” don’t get it. His performance goes way beyond that. Glad Black Panther took home some hardware. I need to see Green Book.

Another intense episode of The Walking Dead went down on AMC last night. Spoiler alert for those of you who have yet to see it, so read no further if you plan on watching it later. These were the most horrifying minutes on the walking dead ever! A deaf person holding a crying baby escaping from walkers was just bone chilling. Every time Henry does something stupid I want to throw my TV set across the room. Jerry and Ezekiel are getting a lot of screen time of late. That makes me think they are going to die before the season is over. Plus, seeing Henry get all this screen time when Carl is dead makes me angry. The entire episode was the intense run-in with the Whisperers, but not much happened beyond that. I’m looking forward to seeing how this story with the Whisperers evolves.

Finally, The Bachelor is going down again on ABC tonight. Every week Colton says this has been the most challenging week yet. That’s the biggest lie I’ve ever heard because WHERE IS THE DAMN FENCE JUMPING? You can’t string me along like this ABC! We’ve been waiting for his! Admit it, you did a little fist pump when Kirpa got sent home. Caelynn coming in to save her girl Cassie was one of the best moments in Bachelor history. If you don’t have a friend who will storm a house like a mini SWAT team the way she did, then you need a new friend. Hannah B might actually be in the running for the next Bachelorette. Looking forward to tonight’s episode, although I’m running out of hope that Colton is really going to jump a fence.

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