DeMaurice Smith, Drew Brees, Labor Disputes, NFL, NFL Lockout, NFLPA, Peyton Manning, Sports, Tom Brady

It Ain’t What You Do It’s The Way That You Do It …….. That’s What It’s All About ….

It Ain’t What You Do It’s The Way That You Do It …….. That’s What It’s All About ….

Well it has come about and the NFL has now its first work stoppage in almost twenty five years. In not being able to reach an amicable agreement at the twelfth hour having twice extended the cba — ( collective bargaining agreement) for which its expiry date was midnight Thursday 10th March , on Friday at 5 pm NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in agreement with the NFL owners issued a public statement saying that there would indeed be a labor stoppage. In effect the 2011-12 season now becomes null and void pending any foreseeable changes in the future.


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Goodell’s counterpart NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith held his ground saying that unless the owners were prepared to accede to their wishes of opening up their books for further scrutiny then there could not be in clear conscience any reason to proceed with the deliberations and mediation that was being overseen by FMCS Director George Cohen . NFL Chief Legal Counsel Jeff Pash expressed his disappointment with the union’s position stating that the best place to conduct the proceedings is at the negotiation table and not the legal system. However for their part the NFL knew full well that all avenues would be sought by the union from the outset and that was the sole purpose of the union decertifying itself in order to take legal recourse against the NFL in the US Federal Court System challenging their antitrust status . With that process quite possibly taking some time before a trial date can be set three of the game’s most widely recognized players have lodged an injunction against the NFL seeking to stop the lockout now being instigated by the league.

Tom Brady , Peyton Manning and Drew Brees have filed a motion in the US Federal Court to overturn the NFL’s decision . But it remains to be seen whether or not they’ll be successful in their challenge pending a court decision by a Federal Court judge. . The two sides at this juncture remain so far apart that one cannot but question the fact that there was little else that one could have expected but for there to be some sort of inaction leading to the present situation. At the crux of it all was how much the NFLPA was willing to concede to the demands of the league without the NFL or owners actually giving that much up in return.

Many fans in and outside of the game have stated their wish to see some sort of settlement in place that would be of benefit to both sides while others simply wanted a lockout not realizing the harm that it would actually do within each of the markets where the NFL has a presence. Many have said it won’t actually do that much damage but bear this in mind a prolonged lockout not only harms the image of both the union and the NFL but it now creates widespread uncertainty and an economic collapse within NFL market place in terms of the local communities. For stadiums that are owned by the municipalities they now see another revenue source completely dry up and a further hindrance to their already tenuous existence in terms of the budgetary expenditure. Those communities with the economic impact of the NFL will lose in excess of $5-$7 billion . That sum doesn’t include direct revenues to the NFL itself but merely within the economic market place of those cities where the NFL is present. I’ve had one patron state that the NFL doesn’t add any presence to a community at large in terms of what it gives back . But the fact of the matter that statement comes from a person whose business acumen at best is probably marginal. With that now comes the fact that there are likely to be 100,000 jobs at risk through various sectors of the community , small by comparison when one thinks that labor force is of the nation is 145 million people and of which there are now approximately almost 14 million unemployed in the nation as a whole . Those jobs in question range from the parking attendants at the grounds to those within the hospitality , retail industry and numerous large and small business that rely on the NFL on game day in terms of business. But you’d be hard pressed to actually persuade an individual to believe that when their view of the situation is so myopic and in essence they merely don’t look at the overall big picture .

Stadiums that are municipally owned creat a deal of revenue for the cities in question during the regular NFL season with that comes a source of funds that in part can go towards improving services and the infrasttucture when spent prudently. The fact of the matter is given the dire straights of cities where the NFL has a presence any form of a financial hindrance in the present economic climate doesn’t help at all , in spite of claims being made to the contrary. One only has to look at the idiotic claims that were being made after the government bailout of the domestic automotive industry. Had both GM and Chrysler been allowed to fail the entire work force of both companies as well as another 2,500,000 jobs tied to the industry would have been at risk as well as the financial outlay that every taxpayer in the country would have to incur with the fact that both companies would then pass on their pension obligations to the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation which would have to pay the pension benefits of current and former employees of both companies after their failure. That agency (PBGC) is a government ran concern that insures the pension benefits of employees of public companies that have dissolved into bankruptcy.

Even though the NFL is a private enterprise it doesn’t negate the fact that this stoppage will have still have an adverse effect on the economy. And when one considers that a government agency was asked to intercede in this situation it only adds to a situation that was very serious to begin with . Both sides have been culpable and the fact that the intransigence shown each side has bordered on being ridiculous and infantile only adds to the fact that there was such a gigantic impasse between the two .

To my mind, the real issue from the beginning was the NFL’s unwillingness to deal squarely with their own culpability in not reining in their expenses. There were so reliant on their corporate patrons tie in with the major broadcast networks in terms of television rights that they simply forgot that there always tends to be an economic downturn and that one ought to plan ahead rather than simply spending well beyond one’s means. And now that they’ve found themselves in the midst of a crisis which they as such help create through their own greed and then simply allowing the union to wield an axe over their head they’ve now resorted to an act that’s not liable to win them any friends at all. The union for its part also has to accept a great deal of responsibility for this mess and not solely lay the blame at upon the NFL hierarchy. NFLPA President Kevin Mawae and Executive Committe member Charlie Batch have gone on record as saying that they’re quite prepared to return to the negotiating table so long as the NFL is prepared to work judiciously towards a proposal that is equitable for all sides in this process. Somehow I ask myself how the hell can they simply not work this out given the fact that at stake here beyond a $ 9 billion a year industry you also have the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people who are reliant upon the NFL for a living . Never mind the cities who now may well have to look at other means of making up for the loss revenues that the NFL places in their coffers each regular season game.

Added into this mix we now have the broadcast and radio networks who also provide coverage of the NFL and how they now go about making up for the losses that they’re now liable to incur. ABC/ESPN , Fox , NBC , CBS and the NFL’s own NFL Network are able to charge advertisers premium ad rates during televised games and with there now in all likelihood being no regular televised season there now sits an empty void within their respective television schedules . Without those revenues we may well see some sort of curtailment as to the content in terms of programming provided up to a point. This now becomes another one of the ramifications of this proposed work stoppage and the ensuing fallout from it all.

For the team owners such as Jerry Jones , Robert Kraft , Al Davis , Art Rooney II , Pat Bowlen and Woody Johnson it remains to be seen whether or not they have the presence of mind to rethink their present stance and relay that to Roger Goodell , rather than the intransigence that’s now being shown by the league and owners . It certainly begs the question was Roger Goodell simply outwitted by his union counterpart DeMaurice Smith or was he merely that naive to think that the league and owners as such, had the upper hand ? Somehow I get the feeling that Goodell’s predecessor Paul Tagliabue would certainly not have taken this stance even at the wish of the owners . And therein lies the difference between the two , as Goodell is beholding to the owners even if they are as such , his employer , that he’s simply forgotten that even with their input he too has to provide some semblance of common sense in the midst of the dissension taking place. Instead I get the impression that the NFL Commissioner is way in over his head ! I’ve said this one of my patrons concerning Roger Goodell and how he conducts himself in public as the executive face of the NFL . To my mind while he gives of the air of someone who appears to self assured , I can’t help but wonder whether or not he’s actually capable of pleading a case on its merits ! Certainly any counsel that he’s been provided with over the course of these deliberations has been nowhere near good enough and the PR battle that the league waged , was a losing effort in the way they tried to effectively communicate with the press and public at large.

At times watching Roger Goodell take the dais to give a speech with regard to the NFL is akin to watching a politician give you the latest updates as it relates to a particular piece of legislation up for a vote within the Congress. More often than not they tend to use far y too many words when just a few will just do nicely.

The image of both the NFL and NFLPA has now sank to an all time low and in the advent of this being the first stoppage that the game has had since 1987 I get the impression that the inevitability about this action would have happened no matter what the issues were from the outset. At no time during the start of this process when the league first chose to opt out of the collective bargaining agreement did I for one really feel that either side wanted to actually reach an amicable settlement. There was a war of words from the start and in terms of attrition , well neither side was really up to the task of working out their differences as it related to the issues. If that were the case then surely they would have met far more frequently over the ensuing months after last September when the league issued its statement that they would indeed opt out of the collective bargaining agreement that was due to expire on the 3rd March 2011 , but then was extended to its last deadline of the 10th March. From November until the federally appointed mediator intervened the two sides had only met formally twice and the informal meetings between the two sides were usually conducted between subordinates of both Roger Goodell and DeMaurice Smith. And in reality those informal meetings were never productive or actually offered any real insight as to what was really happening between the two sides. Need I really say that there was in effect a pissing contest going on between these two leaders ?

Now we’ll have the tv pundits offering their insights with their own so called sources of information letting us know what the real impasse between the two sides was really about. But let’s be really blunt here …………….. for the two sides it was always going to be about money and who indeed was going to get a bigger slice of that $ 9 billion piece of the pie ! That in effect was the be all and end all of this whole negotiation process and none of the other so called side issues that we were led to believe making up this whole negotiation process. An eighteen game schedule was a none starter and the talk about union benefits and increase for current and retired players was simply a ploy all along. If either side were really concerned about issues such as players’ benefits as it relates to retired players then I can categorically tell you this that both sides would’ve done their damndest to get a deal done long ago before the cba had expired. The league has never cared about the well being of its players and neither too for that matter has the NFLPA ! Smith’s own predecessor Gene Upshaw all but said it himself in words that can be attributed directly to him ………. “I’m not here for the older guys I’m here for the young guys who’ve put the game on the map ” . If that’s not a sad indictment of the NFLPA and what it stood for under Upshaw then someone tell me what is ?


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What thoughts if any do you have concerning the this NFL mandated stoppage and will it now affect the view that you have towards bot the NLFPA and the NFL ? Also do you believe that any legal action taken by the players singularly or the union will be successful within the legal system ? And will you as such miss not seeing NFL football for the 2011-12 season ? Simply offer up a comment as to your own thoughts on the matter .

Picture and slide show details below .

(1) Roger Goodell, NFL commissioner, left, and Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys talk as they leave after negotiations with the NFL Players Association involving a federal mediator broke down without an agreement Friday, March 11, 2011 in Washington. AP Photo/Alex Brandon …….

(2) Former NFL player Don Davis departs after failing to reach an agreement in labor talks at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service building March 11, 2011 in Washington, DC. The NFLPA has filed for decertification and will no longer be the exclusive collective bargaining representative for the players. Players will now be able to file antitrust lawsuits against the NFL. Photo by Jonathan Ernst/Getty Images ………..

(3) NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith addresses reporters after the league and the NFL Players Association failed to reach an agreement in labor talks at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service building March 11, 2011 in Washington, DC. Representatives from the National Football League (NFL) and National Football League Players’ Association (NFLPA) continue to negotiate a labor dispute as a deadline looms at the end of a 7 day extension of talks. Photo by Jonathan Ernst/Getty Images ……

(4) WASHINGTON, DC – MARCH 11: Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen departs after failing to reach an agreement in labor talks at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service building March 11, 2011 in Washington, DC. The NFLPA has filed for decertification and will no longer be the exclusive collective bargaining representative for the players. Players will now be able to file antitrust lawsuits against the NFL. Photo by Jonathan Ernst/Getty Images …..

(5) Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt (R) departs after failing to reach an agreement in labor talks at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service building March 11, 2011 in Washington, DC. The NFLPA has filed for decertification and will no longer be the exclusive collective bargaining representative for the players. Players will now be able to file antitrust lawsuits against the NFL. Photo by Jonathan Ernst/Getty Images ……….

(6) WASHINGTON, DC – MARCH 11: NFL executive vice president Jeff Pash & Chief legal counsel addresses the media at a news conference outside the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service building March 11, 2011 in Washington, DC. The NFLPA has filed for decertification and will no longer be the exclusive collective bargaining representative for the players. Players will now be able to file antitrust lawsuits against the NFL. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images ……….


Alan aka tophatal …………………

NFL news

NFL team owners

List of NFL General Managers

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Bananarama …………… feat’g ….. Fun Boy Three …….. “It Ain’t What You Do It’s The Way That You Do It”

Xenia Tchoumitcheva

Eye candy ………. Xenia Tchoumitcheva

Raquel Reign


AFC East, Dallas Cowboys, Football, New England Patriots, NFL, Sports

All Things Must Come To An End ! Even The Good Ones ……….

All Things Must Come To An End ! Even The Good Ones ……….

All good things come to and end it’d appear that calmer heads ruled the day as Jerry Jones made the decision to fire his much maligned incumbent head coach Wade Phillips. At 1-7 one might ask why it took Jones so long to come to a decision where clearly it was evident that Phillips had lost control of a Dallas Cowboys’ team that had for all sense and purpose was “mailing it in”. Highly overpaid athletes who as such couldn’t strap it all on and play hard for 60 minutes. I’ve often heard it said that NFL players are tough and some of the best athletes on the planet. Pardon me for saying this if the Cowboys are meant to be the basis for that argument then I feel everyone who subscribes to that premise really needs to pull their head out of their ass. This current Cowboys’ team couldn’t match the tenacity of teams past who wore a Cowboys jersey with pride. What we’re now witnessing are a bunch of high priced primadona players. As for Phillips his sacrifice was to fall on the sword without Jones being prepared to accept responsibility for this gaffe and the team’s fall from grace.


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Jerry Jones believes that the team can somehow rebound and play with a great deal of pride. Phillips’ offensive coordinator Jason Garrett will now become the interim coach of the team and he’ll be assessed by Jones as to whether or not he’ll become Wade Phillips’ successor. From my own perspective this might just be the only appropriate thing that Jones can do while he gauges the interests of former coaches Jon Gruden , Bill Cowher and quite possibly from the college ranks Mark Dantonio , Chip Kelly , Gene Chizik , Les Miles and quite possibly Jim Harbaugh of Stanford . Though from what we all know of Jones it’s highly unlikely that he’d be willing to hire a coach from the college ranks unless he knows that he won’t have to acquiesce any power whatsoever to his new hire.

Jason Garrett was originally meant to be their heir apparent to Phillips and while his title was in essence the team’s offensive coordinator he had also been assigned the title of assistant head coach. Collectively however, I do think that while much of the blame lays squarely on the shoulders of Wade Phillips and Jerry Jones , I do feel that Garrett simply has shown that as a coordinator and assistant coach he’s simply brought nothing at all to the table. This team lacks leadership, accountability but overall the Cowboys lack complete purpose and the will to win !. And given the inept display by the team in their 45-7 loss to the Green Bay Packers it’s easy to see why the Dallas Cowboys have become one of the biggest jokes of the NFL season. Other than the hapless 0-7 ___ Buffalo Bills has there been a more maligned team and none sensical story of this NFL season ? Granted we’ve had so many idiotic prognostications as to why the Cowboys ought to have been viewed as a preseason favorite for the Superbowl . I must’ve missed something here because this is the same Dallas Cowboys’ team that hadn’t won a playoff game in over decade and whose presence last year in the playoffs lasted almost as long as a sobriety rehab stay of Lindsay Lohan. Mauled and manhandled by the Minnesota Vikings in an NFC divisional playoff game it is easy to understand the reason why I personally think that this team is vastly overrated !

How in God’s name can a 6-1 team look so inept in every facet of an NFL game ? Given the premise that the New England Patriots were now being viewed as the best team in the AFC record wise. It was clear that they were going to be in for a rude awakening . And that came about in the Patriots’ humiliating 34-14 loss to the Cleveland Browns where former Patriots’ offensive coordinator , now coach of the Browns Eric Mangini and his coaching staff out-coached Bill Belichick . If the postgame interview and statement by Belichick was anything to go by then it’s clear that the Patriots’ coach in his own naivete took the Browns far too lightly. The New England Patriots were outplayed in every facet of the game and defensively this team still has its flaws , as they were continually exposed in the team’s pass and run defense. And if that wasn’t enough Tom Brady and the Patriots’ offense were so inept that it is inconceivable that they actually ended up scoring fourteen points in this game. To top it all , Browns’ quarterback Colt McCoy had what might have been the best performance of his career in the NFL since his entrance, leading his team with a great deal of aplomb. Assisting him in that endeavor also was his teammate Peyton Hillis who racked up 184 yards on 29 carries , scoring 2 TD’s (avg 6.34 yards per carry). And if that wasn’t cause for concern it’s clear that this Patriots’ defense has a long way to go if the ambitions of Belichick are to be met in his aim to win a fourth Superbowl championship as a coach joining former Steelers’ coach Chuck Noll as the only four time winning Superbowl coach of the modern era in the NFL.

Within the AFC East the division has become something of a competitive one and it can no longer be viewed as the Patriots’ domain . Rex Ryan and the New York Jets have now become a welcome foe for the Patriots and with a rejuvenated and always forceful Miami Dolphins now looking for some semblance of respect from their divisional rivals as well as the rest of the teams within the AFC. It has to be said that whoever makes it out of the division as its divisional champion will be considered to be one of the favorites within the AFC for the Superbowl 45 (SBXLV).

If the Patriots are to get back on track then their next game against conference opponents the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh this upcoming Sunday will be a stern test of their resolve. They’ll be meeting a Steelers’ team having hit its stride and playing some of the best football in the league on both sides of the ball. Ben Roethlisberger having returned from his four game NFL mandated suspension has been guiding the team as its signal caller and with Troy Polamalu and Rashard Mendenhall having banner seasons it has to be said that this will be a tall order that is being asked of the Patriots to rebound from their loss to the Cleveland Browns. Mike Tomlin will have his team prepared to face whatever Bill Belichick has to throw at him strategically . This may well be one of the better games on offer in Week 10 of the NFL and it could go a long way in determining whether or not the Patriots are “for real” and whether or not the Pittsburgh Steelers are capable of making another return to the Superbowl in chasing down what would be their quest for a seventh Lombardi Trophy triumph.



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What thoughts if any do you have concerning the decision of Jerry Jones to fire his coach ? Do you feel that it was a knee jerk reaction on his part and do you feel that under interim coach Jason Garrett the team will fare any better ? With regard to the New England Patriots do you feel that the team will be able to rebound from their rather inexplicable loss to the Cleveland Browns and some defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers this upcoming weekend ? Simply chime on with a comment on the issues raised within this piece and any other NFL story that was of interest to you this past weekend. Thanks as always for your continued support as it has always been appreciated !

Alan aka tophatal ………………………… ūüôā


Ali Milan

Eye candy Ali Milan . I’d definitely lick her ta-ta’s and other jiggly bits !

Baseball, Football, MLB, NBA, NFL, Sports

Stat of The Week ……………….

Stat of The Week

Well the hype of the moment still goes on the Miami Heat are winning , Brett Favre has thrown his 500th TD of his career and low and behold the Cincinnati Bengals are indeed a terrible team . In the case of the Heat the bravura that this team would be laying waste to the NBA seems to be complete joke . When you have someone such as Jeff Van Gundy making such asinine claims gives me the impression that as an analyst he ought to be showing sound judgment and not be making the most idiotic statements with nothing at all there to back it up. The Heat’s recently loss to the New Orleans Hornets who are unbeaten and would appear to be a rejuvenated organization under Monty Williams .


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Chris Paul is leading the Hornets with a great deal of aplomb and he’s being ably abetted by David West. Unbeaten and riding high within the Western Conference along with the Hornets are the reigning NBA champions the Los Angeles Lakers remain the only unbeaten teams within the NBA . Care to ask Van Gundy what he thinks about the Lakers and Hornets at this moment ? I guess he’ll pass on both questions and simply state they are both good teams !

Week 9 of the NFL and I’m now wondering how bad it can literally become for a number of teams within the league . It’s gotten to the stage where parity now becomes a misnomer for what appears to a diluted talent pool and coaching that borders on being insipid , completely agonizing and painful to watch . The Buffalo Bills remain win-less and I’m not so sure that by season’s end we might witness a second NFL team go win-less at 0-16 for the second time in five years. Chan Gailey and his coaching staff seem to be at a loss as to how best to get this team back on the right path. I’m not about to suggest that Gailey be fired but at this juncture there’s a distinct feeling that the fans and owners aren’t entirely happy with the situation as it now unfolds.

The AFC West has become an open race and it appears that the Kansas City Chiefs , Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers are looking to make this race a thriller. The Raiders and coach Tom Cable have been a team on a mission . For those who’ve become aghast with the explosiveness of the Raiders’ play in recent weeks then think how their fans are said to be feeling ? For the first time in three years the Raiders have won back to back games and are looking to make it three straight. The Raiders’ offense has racked up 700 yards of offense and unheard of 92 points in two games . Darren McFadden, Darius Heyward-Bey and Michael Bush seem to be the three headed horse that has come about to slay the dragon. Cable now has a decision to make as to which quarterback he wants as a starter for this team . The choices are Jason Campbell and journeyman Bruce Gradkowski _________ care to guess what the choice will be ?

Ah the saga that is the Dallas Cowboys ……. “America’s team” ? Well folks the team appears to be now as popular as the poll ratings of the Congress and the Obama administration combined. With each passing week the woes of this team and its owner becomes cannon fodder for the press and for Jerry Jones the choices are , watch this team continue to implode while a lame duck coach in Wade Phillips continues to lead the team. Phillips for his part has no idea where this team is going and the reasons behind the “free fall” and how best to address the problems. Suffice to say while the intrigue continues there’ll be more to this story that unfolds.

The World Series ended with a thoroughly lopsided series win for the San Francisco Giants. Tim Lincecum , Cody Ross and series MVP winner Edgar Renteria have a number of reasons to be proud. Bruce Bochy wins the team their first title in over 5 decades and the fans are now looking to next season to defend their title. One choice already made by the organization is that the services of Renteria will not be retained and in all likelihood we’ll see the retirement of the two time winning World Series player. For the losing team the Texas Rangers and the ownership group led by Nolan Ryan and Chuck Greenberg it must have been a bitter pill to swallow. Favored perhaps to win the series and with the apparent pitching of Cliff Lee it was believed that the team would be on their way to landing their first World Series championship.

A 4-1 series loss and now the fallout from this all is that Lee becomes a free agent and perhaps the most desired player on the market. ALCS losers the New York Yankees having been embarrassed by the Rangers in that series are now said to be actively pursuing Lee. And though Ryan and Greenberg have stated that is their intention to do their utmost to retain the player one gets the impression that the Yankees led by GM Brian Cashman will move heaven and earth to acquire the player whatever the cost. In all likelihood that will mean making him amongst one of the highest paid pitchers in baseball. That privilege currently belongs to Yankees’ ace C C Sabathia whose seven year $150 million contract now sits atop of the list. Lee who’s represented by Darek Braunecker is known to drive a hard bargain when it becomes common knowledge that one of his clients is the desired target of a team. And with the Yankees venerable financial resources we are now liable to see a bidding war start for Lee’s services between the Boston Red Sox , Los Angeles Angels , Rangers and New York Yankees. Lee has stated that he loves the camaraderie of his teammates and the friendliness of the Rangers’ fans but given the financial security that a $150 plus million contract will no doubt provide, do you get the feeling that this might be the one contest that no one really notices ? Braunecker for his part will seek to drive up the price as he’s often been known to do when it involves one of his more high profiled clients. And for the Yankees this once again goes to show how much disappointment there has been with the inconsistency of their pitching rotation in the postseason .

A $200 million dollar payroll and but for Robinson Cano this team was a complete disappointment in the postseason. No leadership when it mattered most and a group of players where there was about as much synergy and cohesion that one come to expect from a bunch of highly overpaid athletes whose biggest concern it appears wasn’t actually to win but give the impression that they were overly concerned about the Yankees’ legacy. Effort being what it is how the hell can anyone believe that the New York Yankees could actually be favored when they acted with such complacency and a complete lack of competitiveness ? As good as the Rangers were in the ALCS was there any point during the series that gave you impression that there was a chance that the New York Yankees were in with a chance of winning the series ?



Picture gallery for your perusal.

Given what we now know it will be interesting to see how things pan out as both the Rangers and Yankees pit their wits against each other in trying to acquire the services of Cliff Lee. As to the NFL the stories there are ripe for discussion and a battle of opinions from the analysts and fans alike. And for the paeans within ESPN it simply gives them something to talk about and give us their own rather mundane opinions concerning the fortunes of a number of NFL players and teams. Chris Mortensen , Adam Shefter and Mark Schlereth will no doubt still have their lips firmly pressed against the sphincter of Brett Favre as they try to give us the latest on the player’s relationship with his coach and teammates. I guess that will continue to provide us with a great deal of comedic value ? And what of the Dallas Cowboys and their descent into mediocrity ? Is there really anything else that we really need to know at this juncture ? Simply chime in with a comment on this and any other sports related topic that proved to be of interest to you .


Alan aka tophatal …………………… ūüôā



A lil’ bit of eye candy for us all ….. Kimbella

Basketball, NBA, Sports

They Do Things Big In Dallas Except Win ……… That Is ! Well In The NBA That’s The Case

They Do Things Big In Dallas Except Win ……… That Is ! Well In The NBA That’s The Case

I don’t know that this upcoming NBA __ season I can buy into the fact that the Dallas Mavericks can be a championship contender within the league. They might just be one of the worse kept secrets within the NBA and season in , season out as they repeatedly fail to live up to potential. And much like their NFL counterpart in the Dallas Cowboys they have an opinionated owner who simply believes that he knows more than most without actually knowing anything at all. I know that they do things big in Texas, from the size of their ten gallon hats to the loopy air headed-ness of the blond females who tend up being crowned Miss Texas. But amongst the professional ranks of sports over the last decade there’s been little of worth or note that has actually come out of the state from that specific standpoint. And for Mark Cuban and Jerry Jones it has been their their respective persona that fans tend to notice rather than anything that’s been achieved by their respective teams.


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Each year the Cowboys are anointed as the team to beat within the NFC and as is their way they find a way to continually disappoint . A decade plus and they’ve only recently won their first postseason game in that time but yet the idiotic panelists continually regale us with how good they are and will be . Isn’t that like trying to make an argument that for all of the good that Adolf Hitler tried to do in making Germany a progressive country during WWII some good came out of it ? Clearly Hitler had his moments but his biggest moment was the fact that he led his country to defeat albeit that he wasn’t around to see the final days of the war itself. And that is how I symbolize the travails of the Cowboys within the NFL and their wish to ascend back to upper echelons of the NFL.

In the case of the Dallas Mavericks it’s been about an organization wherein their owner Mark Cuban has lavish all expense to make this team better and it has come to no avail. One NBA Finals appearance and they were subjected to one of the most humiliating Finals series defeat in recent memory. Not only were they schooled by Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat but this entire team was made to look like a group of aging geriatrics playing against a group of physically gifted athletes. Don Nelson who presided over the team at the time as its coach, he and never instilled any discipline into the team and his coaching mantra seemed to be…. try outscore your opponent without actually playing little if any defense at all. I don’t know what other coach within the professional sporting ranks has ever subscribed to such tendencies but clearly it hasn’t worked for Nelson over his storied coaching career. And this mantra it now appears still exists today with the Mavericks under their current coach Rick Carlisle. And unfortunately for all of the technical prowess he’s shown the Mavericks as a team they still haven’t the wherewithal to play defense in an NBA game. We may see flashes of it from time to time but in essence it has all been too inconsistent.

From a leadership aspect also this Mavericks’ team doesn’t seem to possess someone who can readily stand up and lead by example. An aging Dirk Nowitzki is now not only showing his age but he’s also breaking down with far more regularity than a three legged race horse trailing its opponents as it nears the finish line in an arduous race. And be that as it may , say what you will about Jason Kidd but flashes of brilliance from this point guard can’t hide the fact that this team’s window of opportunity has long gone. The Mavericks’ opponents not only within its division have gotten better but so too have their opponents within the Western Conference. And anyone of the belief that the Mavericks are still a legitimate contender within that conference really needs to survey the rest of the West to see what has really taken place there in the past two years. We’ve seen the rise of the Oklahoma Thunder who in Kevin Durant might just be the fourth best player in the entire NBA after in no discerning order , Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Dywane Wade. Never mind the fact that in tandem with his teammate Russell Westbrook the two could well be one of the best offensive tandems in the league. Given time and experience I fully expect this young team and the organization to have a great deal of success in the foreseeable future.



Picture gallery for your perusal .

As to the impending future of the Dallas Mavericks I don’t truly see this team in its current guise contending for an NBA title and at best they may well make the playoffs but beyond that I just cannot see them contending alongside the Los Angeles Lakers,Miami Heat , Orlando Magic much less success starved teams as the Portland Trailblazers or Oklahoma City Thunder . I could well be wrong but I doubt it given the evidence of this team’s struggles over the past few years . The Dallas Mavericks are a very good regular season team but come the postseason you just simply know that the wheels on this vehicle are going to fall off and their ambitions become derailed. Like I said they tend to do things big in Dallas ….except win !

Chime on in with a comment as to your thoughts on the Mavericks’ upcoming season and what you expect to see from this NBA season ?

NB: Dallas Mavericks’ roster

Dallas Mavericks’ front office

Alan aka tophatal ………………. ūüôā



Eye candy courtesy of …….

Commissioner Roger Goodell, Dallas Cowboys, Football, Jerry Jones, NFL, NFLP(Players' Union), Sports

To Be Capped Or Uncapped That Is The Question ………..

We’ve  lamented  the  woes  of  baseball and the   fact  that   the  game  in  terms  of  its  finances.  In some  ways  it’s  about  the  haves  and  have  nots.   The  game doesn’t  as such  possess a salary cap.  But  in light of  the  imbalances  between the  major market  and  small  market teams.   The  hierarchy of  baseball  saw   fit  to initiate a luxury   tax.   Thereby  enabling   the  smaller  market  teams  to  be  deemed  competitive  by  giving  them   a chance  to  compete  with  their  much  bigger   rivals. 


NFL  Commissioner  Roger  Goodell  addresses members  of  theb  convened  press
NFL Commissioner addresses members of the convened press ..............


NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell¬† addresses¬† members¬† of the convened¬† press¬†.¬† picture¬† appears¬† courtesy of¬† ap/photo/ Matthew¬† Dibble¬† ………





Well  now  with  the   NFL  season  about  to  reach  its  culmination  in  early  February .  We’ll  be  heading  into  a season  of  uncertainty   as  there’s  talk  of  there  being  an  uncapped  season   in   terms of  the  salary  cap.  Such  is  the  acuteness  of  the  situation  that Commissioner  Roger  Goodell  is  looking  at the   situation  with  a  great  deal of  seriousness.  And if there’s  one  thing   that  we  know   about  the   NFL is  that it  loves  a  tightly  ran  ship  when  it  comes  to  the  financial  aspect    of  its  business.   And   that   includes  all  of  the   thirty  two  franchises   no  matter  what  their   size.







For the likes  of  a  colossus  such  as  the  Dallas  Cowboys  and  their  owner  Jerry Jones  this  may  well  give  him  the  sort  of  resources   that  he  was  denied.  Especially when  they  were  able  to  compete  with  abandonment   and  pursue  any  big  time  free  agent  that they  desired.  If this  situation  should  materialize  without  an  agreement   being  hammered  out   between the  league  and   the  Players’ Union (NFLPA).   The  situation   could  set  the   game   back financially for  years.   The  gravity of the  situation  hasn’t   gone  unnoticed   with  many  of  the   general managers   around  the  league.   And  the  players   themselves    realizing  that  they’re   going  to  be  the  ones  dictating   the   terms.  As  they’ll  most  certainly   will  in  the   driver’s  seat. 



NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell  and  Cowboys' owner  Jerry Jones  at the  NFL owners'   meeting .............
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell(right) and Dallas Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones(left) in conversation at the NFL owners' meeting.................


NFL Commissioner¬† Roger¬† Goodell¬† and¬† Dallas¬†Cowboys’¬† owner¬† Jerry¬†¬†Jones¬† in conversation¬† at¬†¬†the NFL’s¬†owners’¬† meeting.¬† picture appears courtesy of¬† getty images/ Tim Short¬† ……………………





With  the  Players’  Union  yet  to elect  a  leader   to  take  over  from the  late  departed  Gene  Upshaw.  One  can  surmise  that  every  effort will  be   made  to  do  what’s  right  to  deal  with  the  situation  in  the  manner  that  will  be  equitable   for  all of  the  parties  involved.  Needless  to say  the  fans  of  the  NFL  will  be  watching  the  matter  very  closely.  As in the  end  it  may  well  be  costing   them  more  than  they   really   know.  And  in these  dire  economic  times   when  all  of  the  major  sports  are   facing  some sort  of  a  problem  financially.  Even  though   the  NFL  has  a  vast  number  of  corporate  sponsors  covering  a  gamut  business  entities.  But  then  again  the  template  that  the  NFL  has  put  in  place  has served  them   very  well.  A  multi billion  dollar  business  that  in  effect is  admired   by  its  peers    across  the  sport’s diaspora. 






It  has  been  the  salary  cap  that   has  in effect  kept  the  NFL  teams  in  check  over  the  years. And  were  the  situation  to  change   it  would  be   very  interesting   to see   how  the  competitive  balance  would  change   with  a  number  of  the  teams and  across  the league as a whole. Franchises  that  are   financially  sound  as  to  the  way  they’re  ran.  With  everything  as to  the  success  of  the   game  being  about  the  now .  It  can  be   said  the  pressure  will  be  on   many  of  the  teams   to  succeed  should  there  be  the  advent  of    a  season  without  a   salary  cap.  So  make  of  it   what   you   will  should  the  situation  arise  where   the  NFL  has  a  season  without  there  being  a  cap  in  effect.


NFL, Sports

There’s No Such Thing As Trouble In Paradise When It Comes To Terrell Owens………It’s Always About Him ……..

Well we know first hand that there appears¬† to be rumblings¬† of disatisfaction amongst the¬† Cowboys as of late. Much¬† of¬† this has to¬† do with players Patrick Crayton , Roy Williams¬† and the¬†perennial self centered it’s me¬† and¬† no one¬† else¬† but¬† me¬† Terrell Owens.¬† All three players¬† happen to be part¬† of¬† Dallas’¬† offensive arsenal of wide¬†receivers.¬†¬†¬†

Cowboys’ quarterback Tony Romo is sacked by¬† Steelers’ defensive player James Farrior¬† for a loss of yardage on the play in the game played in Heinz Field, Pittsburgh.¬† The Steelers¬†would go on to defeat the Cowboys 20-13. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/Paul McCambridge¬† …..


And for¬† a team that¬† has¬†in some people’s eyes¬† this¬† season has¬† underperformed. The why’s and wherefore’s as¬† to this¬† latest reverberation has got many wondering who’s minding¬† the¬† ship ?¬†¬† Insomuch as¬† we had¬† owner Jerry¬† Jones¬†questioning the¬† resolve and¬† courage¬† of his¬† running back Marion¬† Barber. Due to the¬† fact that¬† the¬† player¬†wasn’t suited¬† up in the team’s¬† 20-13 loss 3 to the Pittsburgh Steelers. It adds to the situation if we’re¬† now going¬† to see¬† this¬† team¬† melt down¬† right¬† before our¬† very eyes again this season ?¬†¬†

A somewhat somber¬† look on the¬†face of¬† Wade¬†Phillips after his team’s loss to¬† the Pittsburgh Steelers¬† which¬† now leaves¬† the team on the cusp of¬† the¬† wildcard entrants looking¬† to make the playoffs in the NFC.¬† The Dallas Cowboys were projected¬† as¬†¬†a Superbowl contender¬† and favorites to represent the NFC.¬† picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Mark¬† Rogers ……………..


The NFC East as¬† a division is viewed as¬† the¬† NFL’s elite¬† and¬†with the¬† New York Giants(11-2)¬† seemingly running roughshod over their opponents in and outside the division this season. It can be¬† said that Jones and¬† his¬† gaggle¬† of high profiled players must¬† feel somewhat¬† aggrieved that¬† the limelight¬† doesn’t seem to be on them. That’s unless one counts¬† the off the¬† field¬† incidents¬† and antics of¬† cornerback¬† Adam Pacman Jones¬† this seaon ?¬†


¬†Tashard Choice(23) of the¬† Dallas Cowboys tackled for a loss by¬† the¬† Steelers’ Troy Polamalu during¬† the¬† fourth quarter in the game played¬† at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh , Pa.¬† picture appears courtesy of¬† getty images/Gregory Shamus ………………..


The Cowboys¬† for their¬† part have¬† proven¬†how invaluable a player¬† quarterback Tony Romo is to their¬† cause.¬†Without him¬† on the field¬† as their signal caller¬† they’re¬† at¬† best just¬† another¬† bearly¬†above average team. With him being out¬† for¬† a number¬†of games due to¬† injury. It was left¬† for the team to be guided by¬†journeyman Brad Johnson. Yes the¬† same¬† Brad Johnson who guided the Tampa Bay¬† Buccaneers¬† to¬† victory¬† in the Superbowl over¬† the Oakland Raiders.¬† That¬† being said Johnson for¬† his part has¬† proven that¬† all that¬† glitters is¬† not gold.¬† He’s¬† merely a player whose¬† best¬† days¬† are¬† behind him¬† instead ahead of him.¬† And¬† with the erstwhile¬† virtues and presence of¬† Jason Garrett as the¬† team’s¬† offensive¬†coordinator.¬†¬† Even Garrett knew¬† that¬† he was in for an impossible¬† task. Owens for¬† his part¬† hasn’t¬† come out and directly¬† pointed a finger¬† at¬† his quarterback¬† but¬† he’s clearly prepared¬† to make it¬† known¬† that the¬† fault if¬† any is not¬† his as¬† to the¬† inconsistencies¬† of¬† the team.


¬†Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger evades the tackle of¬† the Cowboys’ linebacker Bradie James(56) whilst teamate Greg Ellis looks on. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Gregory Shamus ……………………


So what is now troubling is¬† the fact that¬†¬†Owens along¬† with¬† the¬†sortie of¬† Crayton¬†and¬† Williams are¬†¬†now seeking to question the¬† play calling of offensive coordinator¬†Jason Garrett. And¬† the very fact that tight end Jason Witten is¬† getting¬†even¬†greater¬† productivity and¬† action¬† in terms of the¬† plays on the field.¬† For his part¬† the coach¬† Wade Phillips¬† sees the situation as nothing more¬† than the players placing¬† their own input¬† as to team strategy.¬† Whatever¬†concerns there might¬† be¬† one¬†can clearly see that¬† the¬† soap opera¬†setting that surrounds¬† Terrell Owens¬†never¬† wanes.¬† If he’s not¬† part¬† and¬† parcel of¬† getting¬†the¬† attention on the¬†field. Then more certainly than¬† not¬† he’s bound to¬† make¬† sure¬† that¬† he’s part¬† of¬† it¬† off¬† the¬† field.¬† But most definitely¬† not¬†¬†necessarily¬† for¬† the¬† wrong¬† reasons.¬† That¬† being¬† said what other player within the NFL at¬† this¬† moment¬† in time¬† can be¬† equally as annoying¬† as¬† he is¬† brilliant ?¬†¬†


Tony¬†Romo attempts a pass to wide receiver Terrell Owens¬†during the game played¬† against¬†the Pittsburgh Steelers. picture apears courtesy of getty images/Gregory Shamus …………………


Owens for his part has¬† had somewhat of a productive¬†season thus far but¬† that¬† being¬† said they’re¬†obviuously not¬† in line with the expectations¬†of the player himself. Fifty five receiptions on the season, with 9 touchdowns¬†and 848 yards receiving to any¬† other player¬† that would equate to a¬†productive year. But for Terrell Owens¬† he may¬† well be¬† view¬†it as being¬† sparse¬† given¬† his undoubted¬†and considerable¬†talent.¬† With that being said if¬† he’s now about¬† to implode when the¬† team are¬† in need of him most. Then it doesn’t augur well for¬† the remainder of the¬† season with¬† just¬† three games remaining for them salvage¬† some semblance¬† of success.¬† At (8-5) the Dallas¬† Cowboys sit second within the NFC¬†behind their fiercest rival the New York Giants.¬† And seemingly on the outside¬† looking in¬† the team now must¬†¬† maximize their potential and¬†play above¬†their ability.¬† The playoff race¬† amongst¬† the teams in question looks as¬† if it¬† will¬†turn into¬† an outright dogfight.¬†¬†It¬† doesn’t help¬† the Cowboys’ cause¬† that both¬†the Philadelphia¬† Eagles and Washington Redskins¬† are¬† still¬† in the picture¬† within the division.¬† A failure to make the¬† playoffs¬†¬†at this point¬† would be an immense¬†disappointment for the franchise.¬† And¬† with them moving into a new multi-billion dollar state of the art¬† edifice next season. The¬† ramifications of that alone would be felt.¬† This season now comes down to the do or die attitude of the¬† team and¬† not merely¬† about¬† the wiles of one¬† player¬† who¬† feels that he’s not being¬† best¬† served¬† by¬† a teammate or¬† the¬† offensive¬† coordinator.¬†


Tight end Jason Witten of the¬†Dallas Cowboys dives in order¬† to¬† make the first down¬†in the ¬†game against the Pittsburgh Steelers played in Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pa. picture appears¬† courtesy of getty¬† images/ Gregory Shamus¬† ………………………..


The underlying¬† problems¬† that this¬† team¬† has¬†¬†is a¬†lack¬†of¬† real¬† leadership on or off the field¬† and¬† it’s¬† cohesiveness if any is¬† but¬† an¬†inconsistency of¬† highly¬†overpaid players. Who¬†when they’re at the¬† best¬† play exceptionally well¬† but¬† when¬† faced¬† with¬† adversity¬† they tend¬† to cower like¬† children who are¬† afraid of the dark. If it’s one thing¬† that¬† can be said of the Cowboys¬† they’re¬† no¬† different from¬† any other professional¬†¬†sport’s franchise with grandiose ideas¬† but¬† who as¬† of¬† late¬†¬† haven’t¬† lived up to their¬† past success.¬†¬† Jerry¬† Jones would have¬† you believe¬† that the franchise is the¬† only¬† show in town¬† and¬† that the NFL would¬† be the¬† worse off without them.¬† But¬† when as¬† a franchise you’ve¬† not¬† won¬† a postseason¬† game¬† in¬† almost a decade and¬† counting.¬† Is¬† anyone¬† really¬† concerned¬† with¬† what¬† you’ve got to¬† say¬† let¬† alone¬† that¬†¬† of¬† a¬† player¬† who¬† knows¬† that¬† his own¬† window of¬† opportunity is quickly closing¬† for¬† the one thing¬† that¬† covets above all else.¬† And¬† that’s¬† a¬† Superbowl¬† ring.¬† Owens¬† may well¬† think¬† of¬† himself¬† of¬† winner but until a¬† team that he¬† plays¬† for¬† lifts the¬† Lomardi trophy.¬† He’ll¬† merely¬† be viewed¬† as¬† nothing¬† more¬† than a¬† malcontent who¬†craves¬† the¬† attention¬† of all¬† be¬† it¬† on¬† or¬† off the field¬† of¬† play.





tophatal¬† ………………………………………