Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Detroit teams and the koolaid

First things first. Though the Detroit Tigers, on paper, appear to have assembled a batting line-up better than they've had in several years -- can we please dispense with the nonsense of comparing them to the Yankees' "murderers row" of the late 20's, and Cincinnati's Big Red Machine future Hall of Fame line-up of the 70's? Those teams went on to be World Series' champions, something the Tigers haven't known since 1984, when the late Ronald Reagan was gearing up for his re-election campaign.

And forget about division championships, or even winning the American League pennant. It doesn't matter. Never did. The only thing that counts is being champions. Ironically, a golfer by the name of "Tiger" once expressed it much the same way. Eldrick said finishing in second place only means you're the top loser. But never underestimate the power of koolaid (aka gullibility -- aka suckahs) in the Detroit area. With the PR departments of the teams themselves peddling concentrated versions of the sweet stuff to the local "homer" media, who in turn perhaps unwittingly distribute it to the masses eager for a quick high -- while making a few bucks themselves -- is it any wonder why Detroit's such a wreck? Crooked politicians and outright corruption aside, when a reasonable person already knows even their sports glass that was broken a long time ago is still peddled as being half-full -- well -- sometimes even junkies figure out they have to crash eventually.

Let's not forget a few things. Two years ago, when the Lions finally made their way to the playoffs again, only to be obliterated by the New Orleans Saints, the junkies, dutifully led on by the koolaid dealers, mentioned the Super Bowl being on the horizon. Last year the Lions went 4-12, including losing their last 8 games in a row. Crash. For that matter, look at them now. Free agents have bailed, the off-season police blotter has yet again begun to snatch up a player here and there, but OMG, they landed Reggie Bush, who will certainly be a stallion to shore up the Honolulu blue and silver's long gone running attack. Please. This is the same guy that got his college USC in so much trouble for having accepted money and gifts for himself or his family. Even his own agent eventually sued him for not repaying a loan. The Miami Dolphins, lately no powerhouse themselves, decided he wasn't worth keeping. So he landed with the Lions. Between character and productivity, he would seem to be a perfect fit for the Lions. And the koolaid has begun to flow -- again.

The Detroit Pistons, under new owner Tom Gore's stewardship, were supposed to make the playoffs this year. Crash. Much has been made of players like Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe coming on strong. Guard Brandon Knight will only get better they say, and other guys like Kyle Singler are solid players. Well guess what? Collectively, in the whole scheme of the NBA, the Pistons are closer to bottom feeders than contenders. And contrary to what the koolaiders would have their fans believe -- it's not going to get better any time soon. Not counting the already established teams -- notably the Miami Heat -- which might well dominate the NBA for the next several years -- there are other teams that are not only younger, but already vastly more talented. To boot, unlike the Pistons, who are currently searching the wilderness for a new head coach to replace the recently fired Lawrence Frank -- at which time the players will have to adapt to a new "system" -- the current up and comers on competitive teams have stability with their coaching staffs. They're getting better. The Pistons have to start over again. This does not bode well for the Palace faithful, what few are left of them.

But never fear -- whatever players the Pistons draft with their two picks -- though most knowledgable basketball folks consider this year's NBA draft to be far below the norm as regards potential star talent -- the local koolaid cartel will start distributing kilos of sweet stuff to make gullible fans once again believe there is always hope. Just one more fix will make everything alright.

Believe it if you will. Personally, I don't do drugs.

Obviously, my mind's screwed up enough already. No need to make a bad thing even worse....

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