Friday, October 19, 2012
The NHL labor dispute threatens to cancel the entire season, something only hockey seems capable of doing not once but twice in the span of a few short years. I have paid attention to many of the details proposed by both sides and remain convinced the players have the better arguments if for no other reason than they play the toughest sport in the world (sorry, NFL fans), have relatively short careers (on average) and deserve as much salary in the contemporary sports world as any athletes. Actually, there are other good reasons to support them not the least of which is the current owners' proposal represents a ridiculous reduction in their salaries while increasing requirements for years of service before becoming free agents. Ownership in nearly every successful major sport cry poor all the time but few if any have sold their franchises for less than stunning profits over the last many years. While they wait to cash in their franchises they can at the very least write off their losses. There are few less transparent ledgers in all of finance than the books of major league owners.
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I am rooting hard for the Tigers to win the World Series. Detroit, as I've said in this space several times, needs all the good news it can garner. Then there is the small matter that I dislike both St. Louis, who appear likely to be the NL representative, and San Francisco. St. Louis was always a smug team when self-anointed genius Tony LaRussa was at the helm. With him gone they are marginally more acceptable though hardly the best team in the league. The Giants are a very arrogant bunch, especially Tim Lincecum, and deserve to be brought down more than a peg or two. Of course, that doesn't always happen in sports, as all of us know from experience.
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The Sixers were thrilled to acquire Andrew Bynum during the off-season and, indeed, his presence promised better days ahead. Now, his presence remains uncertain as his historically balky knees continue to give him trouble. He hasn't appeared in a pre-season game to date is not expected to. He is also expected to miss the season opener and perhaps several more games. Worst of all, I've yet to see a picture or video of Bynum showing him looking pleased to be in a Sixers' uniform. The bet here is he has a difficult season, marked by long stretches where he has to sit out, and then does not re-sign. You heard it here first (I think),
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Is there any local team less interesting to read about let alone watch than the Eagles? Who gives a damn at this point what Andy Reid thinks, says or does? The Eagles' coach has always accepted full responsibility for his team's shortcomings, which are legion. The problem with Andy's mea culpas is that they are as automatic and meaningless as everything else he promises to do to correct obvious deficiencies. Reid's game-planning and clock management are legendarily poor. His personnel judgements have also been horrendous, Danny Watkins being the most recent example.
But being so boring, predictable and in essence unaccountable (he's still in his job 14 years later, isn't he?) are the worst crimes of all.