Monday Morning Coffee

December 26, 2022

Merry Christmas observed everyone! The Dallas Mavericks took a crap in the Lakers Xmas stockings yesterday afternoon at American Airlines Arena in Texas. I think it’s safe to say that Rob Pelinka has done unbelievable damage to this roster, which I’m not sure they can recover from in the Lebron-AD era. The even more frustrating part is that Lebron signed an extension, AD is under contract for a while, and they are acting like they don’t believe in them anymore and want to rebuild. That’s what it sounds like given that they have refused to make a trade repeatedly when opportunities have presented themselves. Even if that’s not the case, they might even be pursuing an an even more unimaginative plan, which is saving cap space for free agency. It’s silly because there are no elite level free agents out there this summer. Watching this team is beyond aggravating and will continue to be for a while.

The best news for the Clippers is that the West is really up for grabs. They are only four games over .500, and that’s good enough for 5th place in the West. Not bad considering Kawhi Leonard and Paul George are basically 1099 employees. The bad news though is that if the Clippers want to build any sustained momentum, these guys need to not only play, but practice on a regular basis. Kawhi and his people are consistently pushing back on this idea, suggesting that he’ll be ready to go come playoff time, but that plan hasn’t worked out so well since he’s been a Clipper. Nevertheless, we’ll see if the Clips can build any sustained momentum.

To the NFL, where the Rams had their way yesterday afternoon with the Broncos. Russell Wilson has looked like Russell Westbrook playing quarterback. The Broncos are going to need to call one of those companies that gets you out of time share contracts, and ask them how to get out of Russell Wilson’s contract. It’s nice to see Baker Mayfield playing well and rehabilitating his value in the last couple of weeks. I wouldn’t mind if he was the Rams back up next year behind Matt Stafford, but let’s be honest, he’s going to be pursuing a job as a starting QB.

As for the Chargers, they can clinch a spot in the postseason for the first time since 2018 if they beat the Colts tonight. That means that we might finally see Justin Herbert in the postseason, which is something both the media and fans have been wanting to see. The Colts have really been in the spirit of giving this holiday season, giving up a 33-0 lead last week. Plus Matt Ryan has also played more like Meg Ryan for the Colts at QB, so I like the Bolts chances.

Elsewhere around the NFL, the Bucs took down the Cardinals last night, and you would think Tom Brady would try even harder to impress his new side piece that everyone is talking about. Tua played liked he was drinking spiked eggnog on the sidelines, as the Dolphins lost to the Packers. I think we are all ready for Cowboys v Eagles in the NFC Championship game after watching a great game between them on Saturday. The Raiders have been eliminated from playoff contention. They were eliminated when they hired Josh McDaniels are their head coach.

With College Bowl season upon us, it’s nice to see a final four that doesn’t include Alabama and Clemson. My favorite part about this though is what we’re seeing in the transfer portal. It’s becoming NBA free agency. There are 1900 kids that have entered the portal. Everyone is looking to get paid, and they have an even better chance to do it by attending a California school with the NIL rules. This is just the start too. When the playoff gets to 12 teams, you’re going to see even more talent dispersed through throughout the Top 25 schools. That will increase the parity you’re seeing in College Football, which is exactly what we’ve wanted for ages.

To baseball, where the Dodgers are back in the news after learning that Trevor Bauer was re-instated by the MLB after an independent arbitrator issued the ruling. The Dodgers have 14 days to either release him or add him to the roster. While I realize the Dodgers will probably release him because they feel it’s not a great PR look, they should really consider letting him play. The man served the longest suspension in the history of the sport, so why should he continue to pay the price for his mistake? Should he never be allowed to work again? He’s paid his debt for a crime he wasn’t even accused of. Do you have to like the guy? No. Is he a total douche bag? Sure. However, he’s going to cost the Dodgers $21 million against the tax and they could use the pitching, so why let him walk? Dodger fans want to win. If Bauer helps them win, they won’t care. He’ll also be motivated to go pitch well to secure another big contract and re-establish his value. This probably isn’t how it will go, but that’s how the Dodgers should really be thinking about it.

Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer delivers during a 2021 spring training game against the Colorado Rockies.

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