Baseball, College Football ........, DeMaurice Smith, Detroit Tigers, Football, Jim Tressel, Michael Ilitch, MLB, NCAA ............, NCAA President Mark Emmert, NFL, NFLPA, Ohio State (Buckeyes), Roger Goodell, Sports Economics, Sports & Social commentary, Sports Commentary

Take Me At My Word …… !


Take Me At My Word ………….

Well the idiocy of the NFL labor talks continue unabated and much like the stupidity of the Congress and Senate in trying to reach a compromise , here the two sides are so far apart that you could drive a Mack Truck through the chasm of their division. The NFLPA led by Executive Director DeMaurice Smith has asked that the NFL open up its books for public scrutiny of which I for one don’t believe that the NFL hierarchy ( team owners ) would be willing to do because then the public would find out the lies that have been told by them as it concerns their overall finances . Certainly NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell hasn’t issued a public statement on the matter . But you’re continuing hear from various sources in and outside the NFL that the two sides are getting closer to a compromise . If only that were so because it seems that neither side at this juncture is truly willing to given an inch in order to elicit any type of real compromise !

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Slide show gallery for your perusal .

FMCS Director George Cohen the federally appointed mediator to oversee the mediation process can’t be pleased with either side at this juncture and with the intransigence being shown by both sides. And should he have to render a decision here you can be sure that it will be one that will be beneficial to one side while being a total detriment to the other even if on appearance it seems to be fair.

With the original collective bargaining agreement having passed as of 3rd March and then summarily extended by 24 hours momentarily before the two sides opted in taking this past weekend off and then extending that deadline by a further seven days . Well with that deadline now expiring at midnight tonight it remains to see whether or not the idiocy will still continue . This much I’m definitely sure of , if these two sides can’t agree how best to split a $ 9 billion ( $9,000,000,000 ) industry in terms of its revenues whereby both sides can feel happy , then the fallout from this debacle will rest squarely upon the shoulders of the NFL , NFLPA and the owners evenly. Any sympathy that either side may well have been looking for from the fans and general public alike will have completely disappeared .

It certainly never ceases to amaze me with the naivete shown by the fans and the college coaches within collegiate athletics . Within the ranks especially of college basketball and football where these coaches are well compensated not only by the salaries paid to them by their respective institutions but also by way of commercial endorsements that are to be had by when their programs become successful. Is anyone now really surprised by the allegations that have been leveled against Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel ? Long thought of as being above reproach who runs an exemplary program we now find out that Tressel much like many of his peers within collegiate basketball and football is nothing more than a conniving cheat and a complete imbecile ! What might make matters worse concerning the allegations against the coach is the very fact that he knew and kept them hidden from the athletics department and faculty of the school. His initial stance was that he hadn’t thought anything improper had gone on concerning the fact a number of players on the team had been receipt of gift monetary and otherwise from independent parties . However , what might be even more disturbing about these allegations is the very fact the coach had been receipt of an e-mail from an attorney , Christopher Cicero who’d also been a player for the Buckeyes when Tressel was then an assistant coach with the program. In that communique it informs Tressel that a number of players on the team had actually been selling memorabilia for financial gain. That is in of-itself is a major transgression of NCAA rules and for the coach to even keep that fact hidden from the AD and school is tantamount to condoning the acts of the players rather than instigating an internal investigation.

Courtesy of USA Today

Ohio State punishment of Jim Tressel called ‘a little light’

By Erick Smith of USA Today

The head of a law firm that helps schools deal with the NCAA said the Ohio State punishment of Jim Tressel appears lenient.

Michael Buckner spoke with The Columbus Dispatch and offered his analysis of the two-game suspension and $250,000 fine given to Tressel by the school for failing to reveal information about possible violation by two of his players.


“Just looking at it, it may seem a little light, especially in light of the fact Tressel didn’t report it to the university within a reasonable period of time,” Buckner said.

The Dispatch noted the NCAA has sanctioned 27 schools since 2006 for violating bylaw 10.1, which requires coaches and others to be truthful and forthcoming about possible NCAA violations. Of the 12 coaches involved, only one kept his job. The others either resigned or were fired by their schools.

“In those periods when he had an opportunity and a duty to disclose, he failed to do so,” Buckner said. “I think the NCAA could also come back and add failure to monitor or failure to promote an atmosphere of compliance. Those are program violations.

“With those three (including the bylaw 10.1 violation), you could look at the two-game suspension and the fine to be the minimum.”

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Clearly here these transgressions by the players of which it now seems the coach had been fully are of at the time were serious enough to warrant an investigation. But with the coach apparently thinking that it was beneath him to actually take this finding to the athletics department beneath him and furthermore being somewhat complicit in trying to hide it all makes one now wonder what else has Jim Tressel suborned to in the past with regard to the football team’s program which may well have broken NCAA rules ? If this were a simple mistake on his part then perhaps one might understand but the act the coach itself was calculated and premeditated and that in spite of his formal public statement on the matter .

With the university having suspended the coach for the first two games of the program’s upcoming 2011 season and a fine of $250,000 being imposed on Jim Tressel they feel that the punishment befits the crime . But I’m not so sure that the NCAA themselves will feel it at all adequate given the fact that coaches have actually been fired or suspended for even longer terms , having violated such rules . But therein lies the actions of the NCAA , as they seemingly pick and choose whom they wish to punish with impunity in order to make an example of a program. Is it any wonder that the governing body of collegiate athletics can’t be taken seriously in terms of its standing and the actions they at times deem fit concerning not only the coaches but the athletes themselves when they’ve broken the rules ? There’s never any consistency as the punishment meted out and not once ever has a coach been financially penalized for any wrong doing on their part by the collegiate body that governs college athletics. If the rules are meant to cover those involved in collegiate athletics then surely the coaches and their staffs fall under those rules apart from the athletes themselves !

NCAA President Mark Emmert who only assumed the position full time in November of last year having served as the interim president whilst his predecessor the late Dr Myles Brand underwent chemotherapy has got his hands full dealing with many of the issues now facing that body. Not only has he got to prove to the public that the NCAA actually stands for something but also that they can be trusted to act impartially and when necessary do what is morally right instead of appearing certain programs over others. Moreover if there was a environment of transparency as it relates to the NCAA’s business dealings rather than a great deal of it being so secretive and done behind closed doors then perhaps the public and college sport’s fan in general may well feel that they can be trusted . Instead they might just be as disliked as the present administration , the Congress and Senate jointly . At this moment the jury is still out with a verdict so it’s anybody’s guess as to what their thought might be on the NCAA .

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Basketball, Ben Wallace, Bill & Karen Davidson, Detroit Pistons, Joe Dumars, John Kuester, Magic Johnson, Michael Ilitch, NBA, Palace of Auburn Hills, Sports

Mutiny On The Bounty And At The Palace of Auburn Hills …………


Mutiny On The Bounty …………….. And At The Palace of Auburn Hills

Well we have overpaid players within the NBA so why not petulant ones as well …say it ain’t so ? That appears to be the case at the Palace of Auburn Hills as the Detroit Pistons’ season seems to be unraveling in front of their very eyes. This situation for coach Jon Kuester as well as GM Joe Dumars can’t be a happy one at this juncture . It’s hard to realize that this is the same organization that went to five Eastern Conference Finals during an eight year span and along the way winning an NBA title —-(2004) with Dumars at the helm as the general manager with Larry Brown as the coach at the time.

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Slide show for your perusal .

This time around for the struggling Pistons and their disastrous season , veterans such as Tayshaun Prince , Richard Hamilton , Tracy McGrady , Ben Wallace and two year starter Rodney Stuckey have seen fit as an act of defiance was to stay away from a team practice but in doing so the official statement from the organization were that the players in question who numbered six in total ____ were that they’d been suffering from a stomach virus. Well if the virus is said to show such symptoms as rash petulance, questioning the coach’s playing strategy and in essence letting down teammates then clearly all is not well within the Pistons’ organization ! Never mind the fact over the uncertainty of the team and the concerns of its immediate future as it relates to the ownership. Karen Davidson widow of Pistons’ owner the late Bill Davidson is the now the owner of the team along with family members but due to the heavy financial burden placed upon the family in terms of estate taxes the family is now pursuing the sale of the team. There at present doesn’t seem to be a clear cut potential buyer of the team but there have been varying interests from a few well known suitors.

Courtesy of Sports tri-cities.com

Hamilton, Kuester say they’ve talked things out

By Noah Trister

Auburn Hills-Mi,. – Detroit’s Richard Hamilton says he met with coach John Kuester recently in an effort to repair their relationship.

Hamilton has played only once since Jan. 10. He was benched for the latter part of January, and although he played Feb. 5 in Milwaukee, scoring 15 points, he’s been out since then because of what the team has said is a groin injury.

On Friday, Hamilton was one of several players who missed at least part of a shootaround before a game at Philadelphia. The coaching staff used only six players that night, sticking with those who were at the full shootaround.

Hamilton wouldn’t specify when he and Kuester spoke. He took passes from the coach while shooting at the end of practice Monday.

Similar stories: Several Pistons miss game shootaround

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At a time when the Pistons are said to be struggling it does appear that the team’s on court problems pale into comparison when measured against that of their off the court situation. Michael Ilitch the present owner of the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Red Wings is said to be interested and his intention to have the team remain in Auburn Hills , a suburb of Detroit, Michigan. For a while it had been rumored that former MSU Spartans’ alum Magic Johnson was also interested in buying the team outright or be part of a syndicated partnership that would buy the team. But it appears that the Lakers’ great is no longer interested and that his pursuits are now that of trying to bring an NFL franchise to the city of Los Angeles .

The Pistons do seem to be facing an act of attrition and wherein the team seems to have lost faith in their coach and at the same time when losing becomes something of a consistency then any dynamic that changes the formula for success tends to bring about problems and strife internally. At the same time one would have thought that veterans such as McGrady and Hamilton would look to lead by example rather than showing an act of petulance and to an extent disdain for their coach.

I’d hazard a guess that Dumars for his part can’t be entirely happy at present and at the same time it underminds his position as general manager as he was the primary participant in seeking out and hiring Kuester after the firing of Michael Curry , Kuester’s predecessor. John Kuester for his part has struggled to bring some semblance of team cohesion and playing with consistency this season . And the team’s struggles have been well documented this season as they may well have now played themselves out of contention for a playoff berth this season.

At 21-39 the Pistons are at present 6 1/2 games out of the eighth and final spot and they currently sit eleventh within the Eastern Conference three places behind the current eighth placed Indiana Pacers (26-30) , Charlotte Bobcats and Milwaukee Bucks . The Detroit Pistons sought not to make any moves prior and at the trade deadline choosing to stand pat . It may well be that as the general manager Joe Dumars is looking towards the NBA Draft and looking to assess the crop of new talent that will be there at the college level . He knows that in light of that fact fans are at present more concerned with what’s said to be happening now, rather than looking to the immediate future. Tracy McGrady for his part is team’s floor general having been converted to a point guard but the team’s struggles has manifested itself in the fact defensively they’re a complete mess !

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

The team doesn’t appear to be responding to what Kuester is asking of them and at the same time players such as Wallace , Prince , McGrady and Hamilton seem to be under the impression that their actions actually ingratiates them with the fans . If anything , nothing could be further from the truth ! For the long short and long term future of the team there may well be nothing immediate that Joe Dumars can do but perhaps suspend and fine the players in question. Had this maneuver been engineered prior to the trade deadline then it’s my belief that as general manager Dumars would have imploded the team altogether and look offshed the players involved that were surplus to the team’s needs as both he and Kuester saw it !

Instead the coach now has six disgruntled players on this team who’ve simply lost faith and whose professionalism now has to come into question. Simply because rather than saying to the coach directly that they’re unhappy with the current situation they simply saw fit not to turn up for a team’s practice session. What might be even more disturbing after this maneuver was that in the team’s next game against in their loss the Philadelphia 76 ers the players in question were seen laughing on the sidelines during that resultant lopsided defeat. And those very same actions were again repeated by those players even though they’d end up defeating the newly revamped —- Utah Jazz —- 120-116 .

I’ve always maintained that the NBA had lost sight of its goals the moment the balance of power swayed over to the players. Now when a team has become way too inconsistent and the players inevitably rather than holding themselves accountable will look to lay the blame elsewhere. And the vast majority of the time the blame as apportioned and placed squarely on the shoulders of the coaches and their staffs. Rarely will you ever them step up to the plate and say ……………”it’s my fault or it’s our fault “. And much of that has come down to the fact that the owners are now in a position of weakness and much of that comes from the league hierarchy and the way in particular that Commissioner David Stern has sought to brand his product as more about the stars within the NBA rather than the teams and the game’s history and that of its teams .

The game has its loyal band of followers but I do believe now that they’re more inclined to follow the stats of the game rather than the aspirations of a team that they well allegedly support. I could very well be wrong
in my summation but I very much doubt it at this juncture !

What thoughts if any do you have on the actions of the Pistons’ players and their subsequent behavior ? Do you feel that Dumars and the coaching staff ought to take disciplinary action against them or do you feel that this ought to put in the past and the team should basically move on ? Let me know your opinion on the matter and anything else concerning the NBA at present ?

Picture and slide show details below.
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(1)Detroit Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey (3) drives on Utah Jazz guard Devin Harris (5) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Auburn Hills, Mich., Saturday, Feb. 26, 2011. AP Photo/Paul Sancya …….

(2) Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson (25) fouls Detroit Pistons power forward Chris Wilcox (9) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Auburn Hills, Mich., Saturday, Feb. 26, 2011. AP Photo/Paul Sancya …..

(3) Detroit Pistons coach Johh Kuester, left, gives directions from the sidelines as assistant Pat Sullivan looks on in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Utah Jazz Saturday, Feb. 26, 2011, in Auburn Hills, Mich. AP Photo/Duane Burleson ……….

(4) Detroit Pistons players Rodney Stuckey, from left, Tracy McGrady, Ben Wallace and Chris Wilcox sit on the bench in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers, Friday, Feb. 25, 2011, in Philadelphia. AP Photo/Matt Slocum ………

(5) John Kuester is seen here with team GM Joe Dumars (right) at the team’s headquarters at the Palace of Auburn Hills , Auburn Hills , Mi,. Kuester succeeded Michael Curry as the team’s head coach and since his tenure the Pistons’ play has been somewhat inconsistent. Allan Einstein /NBAE Getty Images ……….

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Alan aka tophatal ……………………………

http://tophatal.wordpress.com/ 🙂

NB: The Davidson family have sold a controlling stake in the organization to the Detroit Pistons Baskebtall Company of which Michael Ilitch is a controlling partner and stake-holder through his holding company Ilitch Holdings .

NBA news ……….

Detroit Pistons

Detroit Pistons front office & executives

Detroit Pistons’ roster

Head coach John Kuester

Coaching staff

Team stats

Detroit Pistons’ history

Detroit Pistons draft history

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Eye candy Krystal Forscutt

April it seems is eager for a helping hand in order to get out of her panties . Any takers ?
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Keri Hilson …………….. “Pretty Girl Rock”

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