Saturday, April 29, 2017

More sports hits

See former Michigan player Jabrill Peppers, still in limbo over his "diluted urine sample", get drafted by the Cleveland Browns. See Peppers immediately go off on a rant and break into a chimpanzee on serious roids dance routine.

Note to Jabrill. Be happy, but not THAT happy. Yep, you got drafted, but you're going to Cleveland. They have a really good NBA team there, defending champs as a matter of fact. The Major League Indians came within an out or two of winning the World Series last year, and will likely easily win their division again this year. Alas, Cleveland lost its NHL team a while back, the Barons, and it's still pretty much an armpit city overall. And BTW, the Browns stink, have stunk since they came back into the league, and look like they're going to stink for the foreseeable future. But you're stuck with them, rookie contract and all, for the next few years. Hey, you and your Wolverines might have been halfway decent at Michigan, but you never won squat there either when it mattered. So how about dialing the spaz dance routine back a tad, OK? When reality sets in, it ain't exactly the bed of roses you might have thought it is.

In the NBA, the Boston Celtics were a bit of a surprise -- or maybe not. After losing the first two games at home to the Chicago Bulls, they came roaring back to blister them in four straight, including a blowout at Chicago in Game Six. The beaners await the winner of the Washington/Atlanta series. Chances are good they will prevail there as well, regardless of which opponent they face.

Meanwhile, the above-mentioned Cleveland Cavs are taking on the Toronto Raptors in the second round. Yes, Lebron and Co. have looked vulnerable in recent times, but we all pretty much know who's going to win that series.

In all likelihood, that will set up a Boston/Cleveland series for the NBA Eastern Conference title. Are the Celts ready to take the next step and knock off the Cavs? Maybe not, even though they had the better regular season record, and will enjoy home court advantage.

But no mistake, they're coming. GM Danny Ainge has done a masterful job of shedding big contracts for aging players, while stockpiling draft picks over the last few years. They have a brilliant young head coach in Brad Stevens. And the Celtics are young, with Ainge having still a few more extra draft picks in the bank in the next couple years. They're going to keep getting better.

Meanwhile, Lebron James, while arguably still the best player on the planet, will soon face the inevitable erosion of his playing skills. He's at the point where Father Time starts to kick in. He's not going to get any better, but worse as the years go on. Sure, he can and did make any team infinitely better by his mere presence, from the Cavs in the "old days", to the mini-dynasty in Miami, and back to Cleveland to finally win a title for his native Ohio. But subtract him from the equation and the Cavs get "average" in a hurry. Kyrie Irving's outstanding and Kevin Love as well, when he can stay healthy, but the rest of the supporting cast isn't going to intimidate anybody, much less a team on the rise like the Celtics.

Speaking of which, Larry Bird is about to step down as Prez of the Indy Pacers. True, he's an Indiana native, but how cool would it be if went back to the Celtics, where he enjoyed so much success for so many years as a player, as THEIR Prez when they seem to be on the cusp of returning to greatness?

Wow. Remember that Lavar Bell guy? He's the father of Lonzo (still a college player at UCLA) and a couple other sons that wanted a BILLION dollar shoe contract for his boys. That's a whole bunch of dough, heretofore unheard of as endorsements go.

Turns out, the people he was aiming his rant at don't appear to be interested. This would include such companies as Under Armour, Nike, and Adidas. You know, those lovable folks that exploit dollar a day foreign labor only to turn around and sell their fancy tennis shoes in the states for hundreds of dollars a pop.

It might just be that the execs at these shoe companies were a bit turned off by not-so-Cool Papa Bell flapping his gums and otherwise acting like a pompous entitled fool in public. Evidently, the dude didn't have the sense enough to act like a semi-grown up person himself. So if you're a shoe exec, do you really want to throw a huge pile of money at the kids he raised, likely in his own image, before any of them has even proven themselves to be a decent player at the "next level" yet?

Maybe the boys need to take Dad aside and have a little confab. Hey Pop, we're out here busting our butts and are pretty good at what we do so far. How about you back off and let our play do the talking instead of you pissing off people that matter, when you haven't done squat in your entire life yourself, except trying to squeeze in your fifteen minutes of fame you were never entitled to in the first place?

On that note, a yuk-worthy moment. On ESPN's Highly Questionable show, host Dan LeBatard has his dad along as a commentator. Gonzalo Le Batard, a Cuban emigre, can be one funny amigo.

Everybody's heard of Air Jordans and the like, right? The same shoes made overseas for pennies that sell for hundreds of bucks in the state for an enormous profit margin. Eat you heart out, Lavar, you pretty much already screwed up any gig like that for your boys.

But the elder Le Batard wasn't shy about showing off his footwear to boot on the air. He proudly stated he bought his shoes at Payless for a just a few bucks, then took one of them off and displayed it front, center, and pee-yew on the air.

And Air Papis were born.

Not sure, but that just might rank right up there with Ricky Ricardo's Baba Loo, which didn't make a whole helluva lot of sense either as a theme song.

But ya gotta love it....

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