Monday Morning Coffee

July 29, 2019

The Clippers finally introduced Kawhi Leonard and Paul George last week at a press conference. Obviously this was very exciting for all 6 real Clipper fans in Southern California. I especially enjoyed Paul George referring to the fan base as “Clipper Nation”. Sorry Paul, but it’s not a nation. It’s not even a city, a town, or a street. It’s more like “Clipper Cul-de-sac”. Even funnier is the fact Paul George claimed he was a Clipper fan growing up. He must think LA basketball fans are as dumb as the people that are planning on storming Area 51. The internet has receipts showing that he was a Laker fan growing up. Look, congratulations to the Clippers for pulling this off and becoming NBA Championship contenders, but don’t try to bamboozle the fans by claiming this is something it isn’t.

As for the Lakers, they may have put together a very good roster, but the foolishness of their front office and ownership was on full display last week again. Kawhi Leonard specifically mentioned the greatness of the Clippers owner, Steve Ballmer, their coach, Doc Rivers, and their front office, led by Lawrence Frank. That was a direct shot fired at Jeanie Buss, Rob Pelinka, and Magic Johnson for their dysfunction, incompetence, and arrogance the last 6 months, which prevented them from becoming a tyrannical dynasty this off-season. Just because “we are the Lakers” doesn’t mean you can do whatever you want. That foolishness was also on display when they parted ways with Ryan West, who is one of the better talent evaluators in the game, and easily has enough experience to be a GM in this league, instead of some of the other clowns in the league in that role. If you can’t find a place for that guy, then one should ask if you know what you’re doing. Meanwhile, the Lakers are still hoping Andre Iguodola gets released so they can pounce on him, and that signing Giannis’ little brother will be the ticket to them getting Giannis in 2021. Let the tampering begin!

To baseball where the Dodgers took 2 of 3 from the Nationals over the weekend, but their odds of improving the team at the trade deadline are looking very unlikely. The Boys in Blue need bullpen help like Donald Trump needs to stay off Twitter, but it doesn’t look like much is coming. Andrew Friedman is a prospect hoarder. This year, it’s hard to blame him considering he’s got a quartet of great prospects that are about to break into the majors, and this is coming from someone who’s as critical of Friedman as anyone. Major league relievers are more volatile than the stock market, so even someone like Felipe Vasquez should be looked at the way you would look at a pending free agent, since his performance has only been elite this year. The best bet for the Dodgers to improve the club is to take one of their young pitchers like Julio Urias or Dustin May, and slot them into a bullpen role in the postseason. It would also help the Dodgers immensely if they weren’t matchup/analytics focused come October, and allow Dave Roberts to actually manage instead of having Siri and Alexa tell him what to do.

Meanwhile, you thought for just a second that the Angels should be buyers at the trade deadline. Then they reminded you that they are still the Angels, struggling against one of the worst teams in baseball, the Orioles. Going into Sunday the Halos were 5 games out of the 2nd Wild Card spot in the AL, but they have to battle 5 other teams to get there. This season has been bumpier than going for a ride on the Matterhorn. Giving up some solid prospects just for a chance at a one game playoff is silly. The Halos don’t just need one pitcher to get back to the postseason. They need 3 or 4. Their best bet is to take the $35 million or so they have to spend this off-season, and spend it on the likes of a Madison Bumgarner, Gerrit Cole, Cole Hamels, or Zack Wheeler. That should give them enough time to develop pitching from within, while vaulting them into contention in the AL.

The Rams opened training camp over the weekend, as well as announced extensions for Sean McVay and Les Snead. Funny how it wasn’t that long ago that people wondered whether Les Snead would still have a job with the Rams. Now he’s viewed as one of the better GM’s in the league, all because McVay came down from heaven as what appears to be the next great NFL coach. The Rams have one of the easiest schedules in the NFL this year, so they should return to the playoffs and contend for another Super Bowl appearance. They have good young stars in Jared Goff, Todd Gurley, and Aaron Donald. However, even if Gurley’s knee isn’t 100%, and Goff regresses, something tells me that with McVay secured as their leader, they’ll figure out a way to be successful. Coaching in the NFL means that much. Just ask the New England Patriots.

Shark Week 2019 is here! It’s one of my favorite weeks of the year on The Discovery Channel. I won’t be moving from my TV set for the next week, but probably also not going in the ocean either. I find sharks one of the most terrifying yet one of the most fascinating creatures in the world. It’s nice to see Discovery focus a little more on the science of sharks the last few years and not the sensationalized shark attacks, which they’ve done in previous years.

Finally, The Bachelorette’s “Men Tell All” went down last week on ABC. There might not be a bigger villain in Bachelor History than Luke P. Imagine playing a drinking game where you had to take a shot every time Luke P said “let me be clear” last week. You would be dead in 5 minutes. Hey Luke: “no means no” and “go means go”. Leave it to ABC to somehow bring in the religious angle by having Luke P play the role of the controversial Christian. By the way, is no one going to acknowledge the hickey that was on his neck? The reality of it is, Hannah was so uninteresting as The Bachelorette, they needed Luke to bring the drama this season to keep everyone’s attention. As if this season wasn’t disappointing enough, you’ll be even more disappointed to know that Mike won’t be the next Bachelor since he was seen on a preview of Bachelor in Paradise. Considering we’re done with Luke P, how interesting can the finale be? Even ABC doesn’t really think so.

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