Well I can tell you from on-scene experience, if you like to play the horse favorites at Del Mar, it’s a losing proposition.
FIRST DOWN: Does Kyrie Irving to the Suns actually make sense?
Yes, depending on the return. If the Suns can acquire Irving from Cleveland without giving up Devin Booker or Josh Jackson, then I’m ALL for it! But would Cleveland really consider that?
Eric Bledsoe, Tyson Chandler, and a future 1st round pick or two…is that enough? Maybe throw in T.J. Warren instead of the draft pick(s)?
Irving is clearly unhappy and knows that the 2016 NBA Champions are a sinking ship. LeBron James is leaving (for L.A.) in 2018 and immediately Cleveland goes from the East’s best team to an also-ran.
With Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert currently on a ridiculous power trip, the team is the NBA’s version of the Titanic…to be sunk into oblivion once LBJ leaves next year.
Also floating out there are rumors of a three-way-deal with Cleveland, New York, and Phoenix swapping Carmelo Anthony to the Cavs, Irving to New York, and Kevin Love to the Suns. In the deal Phoenix would also part with Bledsoe, a future draft pick and Tyson Chandler with the potential of getting Love and the Knicks first-round pick, Frank Ntilikina.
As I see it, that’s a terrible return for the Cavs and I’m not sure adding Love and Ntilikina makes Phoenix much better than they are now. For New York it’s a dream deal – dumping the overrated Anthony while giving star youngster Kristaps Porzingis a franchise point guard to run the offense. This deal just won’t happen.
One last point for the Suns – by acquiring Cleveland’s star guard, an Irving-Booker-Jackson triumvirate will sell tickets and make the franchise relevant again for the first time since the Nash-Amare era.
Make something happen, Ryan McDonough.
SECOND DOWN: Which is a more attractive college football coaching opening: Ole Miss or ASU / UofA?
On Thursday, Ole Miss head coach Huge Freeze “resigned” due to, among other reasons, his inability to avoid calling escorts. Previously the program was prohibited from playing in the 2017-18 postseason due to additional sanctions. In order to keep up with the likes of Alabama, it’s clear that Freeze just wasn’t running a clean program.
When the Rebels move on from interim coach Matt Luke at the end of the season, is their job a coveted one? They play in the toughest division in football, the SEC West alongside Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, LSU, Texas A&M, and rival Mississippi State. Winning that division more than once in a decade ranks somewhere between difficult and borderline impossible. Winning just enough for a bowl game (6 games) is do-able but far from a certainty for a new coach on NCAA sanctions. Freeze was hired from Arkansas State last time and I’d expect Ole Miss to take a similar route in finding their next coach.
I’ve discussed ASU and Arizona’s coaching futures at length previously, but it’s clear to me that either job would be more attractive to a head coaching prospect compared to Ole Miss. Neither program is facing future sanctions (unlike Ole Miss) and as both schools have proven in the past five seasons, winning the Pac-12 South is very possible. Based on 2017 outlooks, both jobs very well could be open by December 1st.
Right now I’d rank ASU as a top-30 job, UofA as a top-45 one, and Ole Miss in the 50-60 range.
Predicting the future hires:
ASU: Kevin Sumlin (Texas A&M)
UofA: Phillip Montgomery (Tulsa)
Ole Miss: Lane Kiffin (Florida Alantic)
And just to answer this question in advance, I’m not a fan of Kiffin and would rather he not coach my school’s program. His propensity to bolt when a better job comes along as well as his poor ability to rally the fanbase would keep me away.
THIRD DOWN: Jordan Spieth’s greatness and Arrogate’s debacle.
Jordan Spieth’s win in “The Open” (no longer The British Open apparently) was phenomenal. He played well for the first three days before hitting a wall on the 13th hole come Sunday. From there his finish was spectacular to win by three shots. So much for my prediction that an American wouldn’t win Europe’s most prestigious tournament. Once again my golf plays last week were not winners. I promise to do better next time!
I’ll say this now…pick against the suddenly resurgent Spieth in the PGA Championship at your own risk.
Arrogate lost at Del Mar on Saturday. In what some observers have called the most shocking result in the track’s 80+ year history, the world’s greatest active racehorse just didn’t fire as usual.
I was sitting in the first row of seats on the finish line (usually reserved for trainers and owners – thank you Del Mar connections) during the race and literally couldn’t believe my eyes. Think of a dominant 1 seed losing to a 16 seed by 20 in an NCAA Tournament game. That’s the equivalent of this outcome.
While he burned plenty of money (including mine), I expect Arrogate to bounce back and win the $1 million Pacific Classic on August 19th. Many props to winner Accelerate who was so good on Saturday that he likely would’ve given a challenge to Arrogate even if the Breeders Cup Classic champ had fired as usual.
FOURTH DOWN: I’m tired of the Floyd Mayweather – Conor McGregor shenanigans already.
Let me just say that I don’t like boxing nor MMA but this fight somewhat intrigues me. There’s no way McGregor stands any chance in hell of beating “Money” Mayweather but the side show was at least entertaining for a second. Now it’s turned into a ridiculous side show. They’re trying too hard to hate each other. This fight on August 26th can’t come and go soon enough.
Let’s be honest…both guys are making entirely too much money for a boxing match which won’t last 12 rounds and will likely be marred by some kind of craziness. If and when McGregor is getting pummeled, don’t you think he’ll try some illegal MMA moves in order to get disqualified and not knocked out?
If you plan on wagering on this fight, save your money. And if you plan on paying for the $99.99 for it, I hope it works out better for you than it did my buddies and I for Mayweather-Pacquiao in 2015. Speaking of lame and pathetic fights…