Monthly Archives: May 2015

Monday Morning Coffee

Byron at Lottery

May 25th, 2015

Suddenly, everything might be ok in Lakerland.  Last week the ping-pong balls bounced their way, and they not only kept this years first round pick because it was in the top 5, they ended up with the 2nd pick.  Laker fans haven’t been this happy since the Clippers were eliminated from the playoffs a few days earlier.  Even on a night where it’s just the NBA’s losers separating themselves from other losers, the Lakers gave their fans reason for hope.  In fact, you can actually get excited about having at least 3 young players to build with including Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle, and this years lottery pick.  This also starts to make the Lakers a slightly better free agent destination this summer.  Had they lost the pick, the front office might have done something reckless to make up for it.  Meanwhile in New York, Knick fans were jumping off the Brooklyn Bridge when they settled for the 4th pick.  I guess New York forgot that the tanking was supposed to stop after the season ended.  Those bozos will probably trade the pick to Cleveland for JR Smith.

As for the Lakers pick itself, the choice is simple: Karl Anthony Towns or Jahlil Okafor.  Either player would be a fantastic addition, and would put two cornerstones in LA’s front court for the foreseeable future.  The notion that the team should pick D’Angelo Russell #2 because “it’s a point guard driven league” is just foolish.  Impact big men are rare, whereas there are players like Russell available every year.    Towns is a great defensive player, but Okafor has amazing post moves, and is a high enough IQ player to learn to be a good defender.  The choice is Okafor.  Some may want to trade the pick as well, but what’s the point of gutting your team for Demarcus Cousins or even Kevin Durant if there’s nothing left to keep you competitive?

It’s amazing how everyone completely forgot about the Clippers a couple of days after they were eliminated, and once the Lakers had their lottery luck.  For an owner like Steve Ballmer, at some point after he bought the team, he had to have asked himself if he should move the team up to Seattle, a town that is begging for the return of the NBA.  If the Clippers left tomorrow, would anybody around here really care?  I doubt it.  The only thing that’s here for them is money, but that’s enough to keep them around.  Meanwhile, the conference finals are just terrible match ups.  Lebron James could win the Eastern Conference with his children on his team.  In the West, Dwight Howard is softer than a pillow fight between Drake and Chris Brown.  This play sums up his entire career….

Why are people already talking about a Super Bowl coming to LA in 2020 when we don’t even have a new stadium yet?  It sounds to me like the NFL wants two teams back in LA a lot more than people around here do.  I also find it interesting that the Chargers and the Raiders are making all this noise about their stadium situations in their respective cities, but Stan Kroenke is being very quiet and not saying a word.  That’s the sign of an owner who is going to move the Rams one day, no matter what legal action the league might take against him.  It looks like there is a lot less red tape to getting a stadium done in Inglewood than getting one done in Carson.  The question is whether or not the Raiders or Chargers would want to share a stadium with the Rams if they move first.  I doubt it.

Let’s go to the ice where the Ducks and Blackhawks are having a pretty good battle in their Western Conference Finals best of seven series.  This series may be tied at 2-2, but in the first four games, it has felt like Anaheim has been the better team.  In every moment of this series it has felt like you are just waiting for Anaheim to start dominating.  They are bigger than the Hawks, and just as skilled.  In game 4, they wiped away a two goal deficit by scoring twice in a 37 second span.  I came back from the restroom and a 3-1 deficit had turned into a 4-3 lead.  They are that good, while the Hawks have been opportunistic.  More importantly, Anaheim is getting phenomenal goaltending from Freddy Anderson, who has shown that he’s capable of stealing a playoff game or two.  It may take 7 games, but I think Anaheim has this.  Even though most of their fans are still trying to figure out why they didn’t get a point the other night when they went to overtime.

I was beginning to think the Dodgers might never score again with the way they played last week.  These are the type of offensive droughts I feared when this roster was put together.  To make matters worse, watching LA play against the Giants is like watching a bad little league team go up against professionals.  This new Dodger regime has no idea about the importance beating your hated rivals, and it’s costing them in the standings.  Is Clayton Kershaw ever going to pitch like the $215 million MVP he was last year?  Is Carlos Frias going to toss more stink bombs like he did yesterday?  The Dodgers need help in their starting rotation now that Hyun-Jin Ryu is done, and they need to get back to scoring runs.  When you really think about it though, getting shut out shouldn’t be too difficult for LA to take, considering that 70% of their fans have been experiencing it for a couple of seasons without Time Warner Cable.

It looked like the Halos were coming on.  Then you look at the standings, and they are still stuck in mud.  After a tough week in Toronto and Boston, the Halos are still 6.5 games back of the Astros in the AL West.  The Angels have been held to two or fewer runs 5 times this season.  That’s a disaster for a team with Albert Pujols and Mike Trout in their lineup.  We keep waiting for this offense to break out, or for Houston to come back to the pack.  Neither has happened yet through 44 games, and it may take a trade to turn this season around.

We are getting ANOTHER MLS team in LA?  I realize that the MLS is growing, and that there’s an opportunity with the growing hispanic population, but building a new stadium for a new team by the Coliseum just seems like a foolish business venture.  There’s a reason why Chivas USA failed, and it was more than just bad ownership.  This town can’t support two soccer teams.

Finally, Game of Thrones went down last night on HBO.  Spoiler alert for those of you who have yet to see it.  Overall, it feels like not much has happened in the first seven episodes of this season.  However, last night we had a series of interesting developments.  Now that Tyrion and Danny have finally met, it’s a powerful moment for the audience.  We have two of the most prominent and intriguing characters that we’ve been dying to see interact finally together.  It’s amazing how just a couple of episodes ago Tyrion had no interest in Danny and her dragons.  Now he’s very interested in joining forces with her.  As for Jorah, I’m still not entirely convinced he’s back in the queen’s good graces.  I also like how Danny is a lot smarter than other protagonists like Rob Stark.  She isn’t foolish enough to marry Daario like he is suggesting, but rather knows she needs to marry Hizdahr for the good of her kingdom.  Meanwhile, Stannis is sure to make a stupid decision in battle, even if it means sacrificing his daughter.  We saw this before with Renly, and it didn’t end well for the family.  Sansa is getting exactly what she deserves.  She’s getting raped and tormented by Ramsay, which could have been completely avoided had she just trusted Brienne.

Leave it to Game of Thrones to have everything revolve around rape.  Gilly is about to get raped by two dudes, and Sam saves her.  That leads to a sex scene with Sam.  Obviously nothing gets a women whose been raped all her life ready for some love ‘makin like getting raped by two guys right?  I think the writers lost some self-awareness here.  The irony of Cersei is that she is completely destroying Tommen’s ability to rule just to get her own revenge on the Tyrells.  I smiled a little when Cersei visited Margaery to torment her.  She is enjoying the same type of sadistic role play that Ramsay is.  This was classic moment for the show.  I had completely forgotten about that Lannister cousin she slept with and basically had kill Robert Baratheon.  Even though she’s now in a cell, I’m sure she’s far from finished.  Hopefully the last 3 episodes of the season are as intriguing as this one was.


Monday Morning Coffee

Blake bummer game 7

May 18th, 2015

You thought things had changed.  You thought the Clippers were done being “the Clippers”.  Then in a matter of days they reverted to being “the Clippers”.  Yesterday, LA became just the 9th team in NBA history to lose a series after being up 3-1.  The Clipps and Rockets were two pyschologically flawed teams, but the Clippers proved to have the bigger flaws when it was over.  I realize LA doesn’t have much of a bench.  But the reality of it is, this was legacy defining for Chris Paul and Blake Griffin.  Those two players were far and away the most talented players in the series.  Yet when their teams needed them most in games 6 and 7, they failed to impose their will.  Blake went scoreless in the 4th quarter of game 6, and had more turnovers than Better Crocker in game 7.  Paul failed to go into attack mode late in game 6 and early in game 7 when the Clippers needed him most.  Winning in the NBA is a process.  However, the Clippers aren’t going through that process because they have yet to make it out of the 2nd round, even with the most talented team they have assembled in their franchises’ history.  When the moment gets big, the Clippers get small.  This is sob city, not lob city.

As for the off-season, it’s easy to say that the Clippers need to blow things up because the team can’t win as constructed.  However, blowing things up will probably set the Clippers back much further away from where they are now.   The first thing they need to hope for is re-signing DeAndre Jordan, even if it means giving him a max contract.  Once the salary cap goes up next summer, they need to hope they can lure a big name free agent like Kevin Durant to make them real contenders.  Even if they can’t make such a home run scenario happen,  the Clippers can still bring in some quality role players with championship experience to not only give them depth, but also give them the mental toughness they need to get to the next level.  This better happen quickly though, or Steve Ballmer might become a racist too.

Congratulations to the Rockets and Hawks, who have earned themselves the right to get swept in the conference finals.  If the Bulls couldn’t beat the Cavaliers without Kevin Love and a hobbled Kyrie Irving, they will never be able to beat a team with Lebron James on it.  With the Capitals and Wizards losing in the playoffs, last week was the worst week in DC since Obama was re-elected.  Looks like Dwight Howard fell one rebound short of the amount of illegitimate children he has in yesterday’s ball game.  If the Warriors can win a title this year, they will be the first team since Isaiah Thomas’ Pistons that has won a championship with a team that is built around its point guard.  So much for those of you who believe “it’s a point guard driven league”.  The Bulls may have lost, but Joakim Noah is still right about this……

Meanwhile, the Lakers are getting ready for an extremely pivotal moment for their franchise with Tuesday’s draft lottery.  The Lakers had the fourth worst record in the NBA, but they only get to keep their pick if it falls within the top 5, otherwise it goes to Philadelphia.  Do you realize that in the thirty NBA draft lotteries, only 13% of the time, has the team with the worst record gotten the top pick?  The team with the 4th worst record has won it once (1987 when the Spurs selected David Robinson),  while the team with the 3rd worst record has actually won it the highest percentage of the time, at 23%.  Just knowing about those odds should make you feel like the whole thing is rigged, and that the Lakers could very well lose their pick.  Given how “anti-Lakers” the NBA has seemed since the last lockout, I’m thinking LA will either get the 5th pick, or lose their first round pick.  If they lose the pick, that sets the Lakers back a good three years in their rebuilding process.

Let’s go to the ice, where the Ducks and Hawks finally faced off for game 1 of the Western Conference Finals yesterday, and Anaheim handled Chicago easily 4-1 to take a 1-0 lead in their best of seven series.  The Ducks are getting goals from guys named Nate Thompson.  That sounds like the name of a guy who should be selling used cars and not playing in the Western Conference Finals.  Neither teams star players did much in game 1, however, the difference was the Ducks got big offensive contributions from their 3rd and 4th liners as well as great goaltending, while the Hawks got neither.  I picked the Hawks when the series began, but Anaheim’s confidence is growing with every game, and looking like serious threat to win the cup.  Teemu Selanne was at the game, and he found a jacket that is uglier than the Masters green jacket…….

Teemu Ugly Jacket

On to baseball, where the Dodgers came away with a 4 game split against the Rockies over the weekend.  They say a tie is like kissing your sister, but this felt a lot worse than that considering the Rockies are in last place in the NL West.  I still have no idea how the Dodgers have managed to put together the 4th best team ERA in the NL given that they only really have two legit starting pitchers, and Clayton Kershaw hasn’t even been his usual dominant self.  The irony of the Dodger is that 36 games into the season, despite being near the top of the NL, they have exactly  same issues as last year.  They have a stud closer in Kenley Jansen, but no reliable middle relievers to get the ball to him.  There are questions at the back of their starting rotation, and they have have a log jam of infielders, at third base in particular.  Andrew Friedman claimed the Dodgers were poorly constructed when he took over.  The reality is, they are just as talented, yet he still hasn’t fixed the flaws to get them over the hump.  Perhaps dealing an infielders like Juan Uribe or one of their outfielders might net them the extra rotation help they need.

Then there’s the Angels, who managed to take two of three against the struggling Orioles over the weekend, and are now winners of 5 of their last 6.  The good news for the Halos is that their pitching has come around, Jeff Weaver can get people out again, and they now have the best team ERA in the American League.  The bad news is that I’ve seen pimpled faced freshman scoring more than the Angels have this season.  Only the White Sox have scored fewer runs in the AL than the Halos, and just two teams have a lower team batting average.  Albert Pujols and David Freese are giving the Angels very little hitting at the corner infield spots, while the team is also getting nothing from their revolving door of left fielders.  Sitting at 5.5 games back of 1st place Houston, the Halos need to acquire a productive bat or two or else they will find themselves out of contention in no time.

Leave it Roger Goodell to keep Deflate Gate in the news last week.  In every other sport, we wouldn’t be talking about this anymore because we have consistent rules for punishment, and swift and decisive action taking place.  Now Goodell will probably sit down with Tom Brady and come up with some compromise.  Goodell is pretending like he’s running a league defined by integrity.  A league where he’s got an owner insisting on keeping a racial slur as its team’s nickname, and where all the owners are paying hundreds of millions to get their former concussed employees to go away and keep their mouths shut.  Tom Brady didn’t cheat.  Cheating is defined as having an unfair advantage over the playing field.  There’s no unfair advantage to be gained when the teams can provide their own footballs.  Besides, can you really blame Brady not wanting to turn over his cell phone to investigators?  He would gladly take a 4 game suspension than have Gisele find out who he has been doing on the side.

Last night’s Game of Thrones had a pretty intense and disturbing ending. Spoiler alert for those of you who have yet to see it.  Sana Stark gets raped by her new husband, Ramsay Bolton, on their wedding night.  As if that wasn’t horrifying enough, Ramsay made Theon watch is all go down.  Some of you actually thought Sansa’s first time was going to be with a good guy after Joffrey died.  WRONG.  She ended up with an even more screwed up husband who not only raped her, but made a guy without a penis watch.  I know a lot of people are going to criticize the writers for incorporating another rape scene into the show, but were talking about Medieval Times here people.  This is how things went down unfortunately.  I had way too much Arya in this episode.  Her story gets more uninteresting by the episode.  Has there ever been a weaker King than Tommen?  His wife gets detained in front of him, and he looks as befuddled as the Clippers do in a game 7.  Cersei is winning this battle, and she seems like she’s determined to do so no matter what the cost.  Tyrion talked his way out of another situation in which his fate appeared to be imminent death, and he’s still one of the show’s best characters.  Why the hell is Stannis taking so long to get to Wintefell?  I’m hoping things pick up in the last four episodes of the show!

Sansa wedding


Monday Morning Coffee


May 11th, 2015

The Clippers are looking like a championship team.  In a related story, record low temperatures are expected to hit the world today, confirming that indeed, hell has frozen over.  No really, the Clippers confidence is through the roof right now, as they have opened up a 3-1 series lead vs the Houston Rockets.  Blake Griffin looks like one of the best players in the NBA right now, Chris Paul has recovered from his hamstring injury, and suddenly Austin Rivers is an effective role player off the bench.  The Rockets look like a bunch of soft, whining, sore losers, that don’t have an answer for Blake Griffin, while the Clipps are just toying with them.  If there was ever a time for the Clipps to catch lightening in a bottle and try to win a title, now is the time.

There is clearly going to be some modification to the intentional fouling rule, given all the hacking of DeAndre Jordan and other crummy free throw shooters.  Yes, it was painful to watch that first half yesterday, but everyone loves to overreact to this stuff.  The league doesn’t have some ratings crisis on their hands because of this, and the notion that they should completely do away with the intentional fouling is silly.  If a player can’t make his free throws, we shouldn’t make rules to allowing them to get out of that accountability.  These are professional basketball players.  Try practicing free throws instead of dunks all summer.

The NBA playoff action over the weekend was spectacular.  I haven’t seen that many banks go down since the financial crisis in 2008.  The Bulls are going to regret not being able to put the Cavs away yesterday since the Cavs are dealing with even more injuries than them.  Lebron may be inefficient, but he’s still the best player in the league and that will be the difference in the series.  By the way, I love how when Lebron goes 10-30 and they win he’s a hero, but when Kobe goes 10-30 and his team wins in the playoffs he’s a ball hog.  The Warriors are suddenly realizing why jump shooting teams without playoff experience get bounced from the playoffs.  Steve Kerr is going to have to run down to Sports Authority to buy a clip board because he will have to do some coaching for the first time this season.  Meanwhile,  that Wizards-Hawks series was about as interesting as watching paint dry, until Paul Pierce made that buzzer beater and started firing off great one-liners.

This is usually the look on dude’s face when bae says she’s pregnant but he know that he pulled out early……

    This Deflate Gate story is unbelievable.  Why are we still talking about this?  Look, I’m a complete Boston sports town hater, but the notion that Brady and the Patriots are some kind of cheaters whose legacy is tarnished is ridiculous.  The Patriots could have been playing the AFC Championship game with medicine balls, and they would have still destroyed the Colts.  I guess we’ll never know if without deflating the footballs a little, the Pats would have only won by 31.  Deflating the footballs also doesn’t change the fact that Pete Carroll called the biggest bonehead play in the history of the league during the Super Bowl.  Sure it would be nice if Brady could actually give us straight answers about the footballs, which he likely had doctored, but are we really going to suspend one of the marquee faces of the NFL for this? This whole incident is another bumbling for Roger Goodell, who put together a “Keystone Cops” like investigation, without any real evidence here to suspend Brady.  When he does suspend him, it’s going to be another situation of him making rules up along the way.   In just a matter of months Goodell is quickly cementing himself among the worst CEO’s in America.  We’re talking right up there with the likes of Chuck Conway of Kmart and Ken Lay of Enron.  What are your thoughts Gronk?……

The fact the Dodgers have a 4.5 game lead in the NL West is amazing.  They have an all-star team worth of players on the disabled list, and their ace, Clayton Kershaw, has been average at best.  It also makes you think that once Joc Pederson and Alex Guerrero stop playing like Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig, the Boys in Blue could take a tumble in the standings.  It sure would be nice for the Dodgers to get Dan Haren back to fill in the back end of their rotation.  He’s 4-1 with a 2.68 era for the Marlins, and the Dodgers are paying his entire $11 million salary.  Instead, the Dodgers are paying guys like Brandon McCarthy $12 million a year, who will spend much of the next four years on the DL.

As for the Angels, they settled for a split with the 1st place Houston Astros over the weekend.  That was one bitter pill to swallow given the fact that the Halos should have taken 3 out of 4 after Huston Street blew another save on Thursday night.  The good news for the Halos is their starting pitching is coming around, including the likes of Jered Weaver and CJ Wilson.  The bad news is the offense stinks.  I guess $240 million doesn’t buy what it used to because Albert Pujols is hitting .230.  The Halos also are getting no production from their left fielders either.  There’s still plenty of time to get it together, and the rest of the division isn’t exactly setting the world on fire, so if the Halos can just come up with a few more runs they might actually find themselves back in 1st.

Mercifully, the Flames-Ducks series has come to an end.  I’m amazed the Flames were able to even push that series to five games.  Corey Perry had a complete Paul Pierce moment last night, taking a blow to the knee and crawling off the ice, while even being carried into the locker room by trainers.  Just a couple of shifts later dude was back on the ice.  Was Oral Roberts back in the locker room or what?  Some hockey player you are Corey Perry.  As for the next round of the playoffs, I’m looking forward to the Ducks actually playing a team that will not be overmatched against them.  I picked the Hawks to win the cup at the beginning of the season, and even though this will be a long series, I see no reason to pick Anaheim.

It’s a shame we learned that Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson is leaving Notre Dame and transferring to another school.  It was just two years ago that Golson led the Irish to the national championship game.  His first half of 2014 was pretty solid too, and then Brian Kelly crushed his confidence.  Kelly has done a lot of good things while coaching the Fighting Irish, but this isn’t one of them.  Golson clearly felt like Kelly was not going to give him the starting job back from Malik Zaire, which made him jump ship.  Still like your quarterback situation better than Ohio State’s Coach Kelly?  So much for all that quarterback depth you were happy about .

It’s a real bummer Bill Simmonds is leaving ESPN after a year full of drama with them.  What’s really a shame is that Simmonds isn’t going to take Grantland with him when he leaves.  It’s really his website, and it should go with him wherever he goes.  We saw this type of situation dating back to the Dan Patrick days.  If you have even the slightest bit of controversy surrounding you, ESPN is waiving you goodbye.  Frankly, I’m shocked that Stephen A. Smith hasn’t been kicked out yet.  He’s had a few close calls.  Simmonds will be fine, and like Dan Patrick found out, there are greener pastures elsewhere.  Heck, I’d love to see him to do some LA Kings coverage, but I don’t think that’s really his passion.    

Finally, Game of Thrones went down last night on HBO, and we are now halfway through the fifth season of the show.  Spoiler alert for those of you who have yet to see last night’s episode.  I almost completely forgot about Bran.  Are we ever going to hear from him again?  His story was a little tiresome and farfetched, but the show could still use him in other ways.  This episode was another reminder of why Jon Snow isn’t a good character.  He has nobody to answer to, and is in a position of power, yet is looking to others for answers.  That’s a big “no-no” in the Game of Thrones and will get you killed.  Much of the episode was focused on Snow and the North, which could be a sign he won’t be around much longer.  Ramsay has quickly become this seasons’ top villain.  He’s a sick man who is getting joy out of others pain which we saw again when he forced Reek/Theon to apologize to Sansa for killing her brothers (even though he knows they aren’t dead).  The sudden love affair of between Grey Worm and Missandei seems odd, but when you think about it, the fact is that Dany is making The Unsullied more human over time.  The issues that Dany is having within her own Kingdom are interesting, but somewhat of a drag on the show.  I was really hoping for more interaction between her and the people of Westeros, but that seems like a storyline for another season.

















Monday Morning Coffee

May 4th, 2015

Has anybody seen Steve Ballmer?  He’s probably streaking naked across the 405 freeway after the Clippers eliminated the defending champion Spurs over the weekend.  I’ve gotta hand it to both CP3 and Blake Griffin.  CP3 channeled his inner Isaiah Thomas, and played a great game 7 with a pulled hamstring.  As for Blake, he finally imposed his will when it mattered most by recording a triple double.  The one thing that always separated the Clipps from being elite was that their two superstars were never at their best when their best was needed.  When that changed Saturday and the Clipps showed mental toughness, it suddenly became believable that the Clippers are a contender.  Then again, after seeing both CP3 and Steve Ballmer cry, I’m not sure they actually realize there are three more rounds to be played.  As for the Spurs, this is the worst thing to happen to San Antonio since border patrol.  I’m sure Tim Duncan and his band of senior citizens will be back in contention next year.  They always are.

The Clippers vs Rockets quarterfinals will be interesting.  When the playoffs started, there was no way you could trust either one of these two teams when it mattered, and both appeared to have the mental toughness of a flea.  The Clipps have to just be radiating with confidence after taking down the defending champs.  Even though the Rockets have a dangerous James Harden and a deep bench, Blake and CP should easily be the best players on the court (assuming Paul is healthy).  Meanwhile, Dwight Yokum has more toughness than Dwight Howard at this point in the season.  I’m taking the Clippers in 6 games, before they get taken down by the Warriors.

Everyone who ordered the fight on Saturday now knows how the Bengals feel after giving Andy Dalton $100 million.  I can’t believe we waited four years to watch that.  To the average person, it looked like neither Floyd nor Manny “won” the fight.  Ok, so Floyd may have landed a couple of more punches to get the decision, but I’ve seen more contact in a WNBA game than in that fight.  Floyd might be the best in his era, which lacked any dominant fighters, but he’s far from the best of all time.  Not even top 10.  Still, I do love the narrative as well that if you are watching the fight, you are supporting domestic violence and bigotry.  If you’re going to watch sports depending on the character of the people you are watching, I’ve got bad news: you’re probably not going to be watching any sports.  There are plenty of professional athletes committing adultery, smoking weed, and probably doing all kinds of things you don’t approve of.  If you can’t separate the performance from the person than you should just forget watching.  You gotta admit though, the fight between Floyd and his side chick had more contact than what we saw Saturday.

I was unable to get a bet in for the Kentucky Derby, despite some last minute efforts.  If you have never been to Churchill Downs on the first weekend of May, it’s absolutely worth doing at least once.  The victory by American Pharaoh was great, and the race was exciting, however, I have a sad confession to make.  I don’t actually know how place a bet on horses at the racetrack.  Yes, it’s true.  I have to go ask the person at the counter about the meaning of things like “trifecta” and “box”, which always annoys the hell out of them.  I better stick to making my bets online.

The Halos have been getting spanked.  They just got destroyed over the weekend in San Francisco, and they are already 7 games behind the Astros in the AL West.  No really…the Houston Astros are in 1st place!  That’s right people.  Hold onto your loved ones, and better ask forgiveness for all your sins, because the universe must be coming to an end.  The Angels look more the team we saw two years ago that struggled to hit early, and later on couldn’t come up with consistent starting pitching.  Jered Weaver looks like he’s completely finished.  The man is throwing about 82 miles per hour, and getting punked every time he goes to the mound.  CJ Wilson has been underwhelming too, and those two are supposed to be at the forefront of the Angels rotation.  To make matters worse, the Angels have the 2nd worst team batting average in the AL.  The Angels better hope this month was just an aberration, otherwise their season is going to hell quickly.

As for the Dodgers, I have no idea how this team is in 1st place with their starting pitching being held together by duct tape.  The Dodgers offense appears to have more fire power than ISIS right now, but the injuries and the pitching are very concerning.  Clayton Kershaw has been average, Brandon McCarthy is done, Hyun-Jin Ryu will forever have shoulder issues, and Brett Anderson is bound to get hurt any day.  Who are these guys getting the starts? Scott Baker?  I’m not sure how long Don Mattingly can keep giving the ball to these no names and hoping for the offense to carry them.  Especially not with Donny Baseball blowing out the bullpen like he does.  The Boys in Blue might need to make a trade, and it may involve giving up some big time prospects for Cole Hamels.  It’s going to be a steep price but much needed if they are serious about contending.  Yesterday’s walk off was nice though…..

What a complete joke this Ducks vs Flames semifinals series is.  It’s like watching grown men go up against a pee wee hockey team.  The Ducks are bigger, faster, more physical, and more experienced than the Flames.  Calgary doesn’t even know who to start in goal anymore.  Even if Calgary wins a couple of games at home, which they won’t, the last time they won in Anaheim Disneyland hadn’t even been built yet.  This is like watching a #1 seed vs a #16 seed in the NCAA tournament, except you have to endure it for a whole week.  Just give us Ducks vs Blackhawks already.

The NFL draft was also part of this past weekends sports insanity.  Brett Hundley was selected by the Packers, but not until the 5th round.  He was also the 6th quarterback taken, which shows you just what scouts think of his throwing ability.  Maybe Hundley should have stayed in school for his senior year.  Four USC players were also chosen Saturday, including Buck Allen and Josh Shaw.  68 Trojans have now been selected in round 1 since 1967, which is 10 more than any other school.  Does Chip Kelly realize that there are other conferences other than the Pac-12?  He only drafts Pac-12 players.  Chip was also reportedly offering blood money, unborn children, players, draft picks, and his soul to the Titans for Marcus Mariotta.  The Titans are now only 11 players away from being a championship contender.  Pray for Amari Cooper everyone.  He was drafted by the Raiders.  The Cowboys spent much of the week scouting local prisons for late round sleepers. The Redskins helped their offensive line, but the bad news for their fans is that RGIII might have time to throw.

What a great episode of Game of Thrones last night on HBO.  Spoiler alert for those of you who have yet to see it.  The one thing I really enjoyed from this episode was the backstories told by Ser Barristan to Dany, about her brother and the Mad King.  I also enjoyed hearing the backstory that Littlefinger told to Sansa about Rhaegar Targeryen.  Interesting that Sansa and Dany’s perception of each of those people are much different than the stories they were told.  I was so disappointed in Tommen that he proved to be a weak King when Margaery asked him to get her brother out of jail.  At least if it were Joffrey, he would have had as much bloodshed as necessary to get the job done.  I’m sure Lady Olenna will get involved now, so the Lannisters are really in trouble!  Stannis actually seemed like a decent human being in this episode. He complimented Jon Snow when his wife referred to him as just another bastard child.  Then, he seemed like a really good father when he explained to Shereen, how he cared for her when she had Greyscale.  Based on the preview for the next episode, it seems as though Ser Barristan is dead.  I think this sets the stage for Jorah to really get back in to Dany’s trusted inner circle.