Hey gang, great week. Remember the mailbag on Friday, and we have one spot open. Let's finish strong. (Secret side challenge: Sneak a movie quote into your answer and see if we can guess it. Could be prizes involved for some creative thinkers out there.)
From the "Talk too much Studios" here we go...
Former NFL All-Pro receiver Terrell Owens went on the Dr. Phil show earlier this week, and the results were more over-the-top than you could even have imagined. He is broke and has several kids with several women and tried to make amends about his sorry daddying.
Here's our starting point:
"This is not an ideal situation having four kids by four different women," said Owens, who is playing for an arena football team somewhere in Texas.
Yep, when you're dealing with that fundamental baseline of logic and supreme grasp of the social structure, there's no way to fail, right? Right?
OK, few disclaimers here:
First, the 5-at-10's momma loves her some Dr. Phil, so out of respect we're going to go easy on him. That said, anyone who drags their personal problems out into the open forum of day-time TV not only deserves our ridicule, they should expect it. Period.
Second, the NFL is an 10-figure industry — somewhere in the neighborhood of $8 billion annually, and that's a pretty nice neighborhood. And they are making great strides to try to make sure the players — the guys that deliver the goods at great physical cost every week — are as safe as possible. They also need to look at ways to make players safe financially. Hey, we get it, there's a great big chunk of personally responsibility needed here and this is T.O.'s fault. But this league is going to put safe guards in so the players can try to deal with the literal headaches that the game can cause, why not the heartaches too?
Third, there is zero doubt in our mind that T.O. could contribute to an NFL team right now. But his overwhelming physical gifts are no longer worth the distraction, and that is a grand lesson for everyone.
Miami Heat LeBron James celebrates with teammate Chris Bosh after a play during the third quarter of game 2 of an NBA Eastern Conference playoff game at the AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on Monday, April 30, 2012. (AP Photo/el Nuevo Herald, David Santiago)Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.
Rising NBA temperatures
The NBA is starting to get really interesting. LeBron and the Heatles dismissed the Knicks. Star-studded OKC and San Antonio are waiting to get back on the floor after first-round sweeps.
Plus, there are three Game 6s tonight with varying storylines that have some intrigue.
Atlanta at Boston: The Hawks trail 3-2 in the series, and as Chuck Barkley said earlier this week about the excellently predictable mediocrity from the Hawks — "We've seen this move before," Chuck said, "and they all drown" — we know Boston will find a way to down this bunch. In fact it's so certain, let's turn our attention to Rajon Rondo, who had a finger-pointing temper-tantrum at a camera man after the Celtics' Game 5 loss. No, not about Rondo's emotions or his lack of control of them, let's talk about the jacket. Wow, Rondo issued his stern talk to the camera man wearing something that Morris Day wouldn't wear. It was some sort of zebra-striped disaster with an orange collar that was so trying-too-hard-tobe-hip that Ducky from Pretty in Pink wouldn't touch it with Molly Ringwald's chopsticks.
L.A. at Denver: The Lakers lead 3-2, and as was accurately pointed out Wednesday, this series is not a done deal yet. We believe Kobe Bryant and the gang will have a say in the NBA Finals and they will get through this round. But, if we're a Lakers fan this morning we have two questions: Can they take of BID-ness tonight and avoid the extra strain and pressure of a Game 7? And, why are they so overly concerned about the computer games the Nuggets are playing on the bench? Seriously, who cares which version of "Where's My Water" or "Angry Birds" the Denver bench has. Shut up and play.
Chicago at Philadelphia: The Bulls trail 3-2 and have been ravaged by injury. Philly needs to handle this tonight or be faced with letting a golden chance get away. That said, tough break for the Bulls, who had the best record in the East but lost Derrick Rose to an ACL injury and Joakim Noah to an ankle. Noah is doubtful for tonight. And as tough as the West is shaping up to be, the East has kind of opened itself up for the Heat.
You talk too much
Cris Carter has landed in a flap for flapping his gums. Ultimately, we believe Carter was shooting his mouth off, trying to sound tough on the radio. That's fine, everyone likes to sound tough on the radio — in fact we're going to try to sound tough today at 2 p.m. on The Show with Chris Goforth on 1370 AM.
Quick rewind: After the hubbub of the New Orleans Saints' Bounty-Gate, every NFL former player with a microphone tries to downplay the deal. It happened everywhere, but they offer no real example. They heard about it in their day. OK, great.
Well on a radio show this week, Carter tossed out that he put bounties on defensive guys he thought were out to get him. (Wouldn't that be a Re-Bounty, and could we do the old-school, "RE-Bounty that basketball" cheer? No. OK, let's move along.)
Carter specifically mentioned Bill Romanowski, saying the former NFL linebacker made threats to Carter, who in turn told some of his former Vikings offensive linemen teammates to get Romanowski and there was "food money" to be had for doing it.
Well, few things here: First, Romanowski never got hurt, and if several offensive linemen wanted to take out a linebacker, there would be ample chance to do so. Second, Carter was not hurt, so either Romanowski didn't threaten him or he didn't do a very good job of backing it up. Third, why would Carter even discuss this if for no other reason than to make Carter look tough or with it. Seriously this is something like a decade ago and we have not heard about it until now.
Here's saying the entire deal was overblown for effect and that effect was not as cool as Carter had hoped it to be. He spent most of Wednesday visiting a slew of ESPN platforms trying to backtrack and dial down the drama. Here's a thought about drama — don't start none, won't be none. And you can quote us on that.
This and that
— Checking on random sports news items we Matthew Anthony Maldanado, who was born in Salinas, Calif., on this day last year http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/31/giant-california-baby_n_868954.html. Not-so-Lil' Matt weighed 14 pounds, 3.8 ounces at birth. We believe Mel Kiper has him on his NFL Draft big board for the 2033 Draft. We love the draft. You know this.
— Speaking of the draft, the NBA is starting to appear on the horizon. We have not forgotten this. In fact, who had this factoid on the parlay sheet: The SEC could have more first-rounders in the NBA draft as they did in the NFL draft. Kentucky has five projected first-rounders, Vandy could have three sneak into round one, Florida's Brandon Beal is a lottery pick and Mississippi State's Arnett Moultrie is also a first-rounder. There were nine SEC football first-rounders.
— The Braves scored as many runs as we did Wednesday afternoon and took a 1-0 loss at Chicago. The Cubs are confounding, no? They appear to have boss starting pitching, yet they are 13-18 and tied for last in the NL Central — a game and a half behind the Pirates for crying out loud.
We mentioned Wednesday that Hawks guard Joe Johnson made more coin than Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. That got us thinking (which, we know Spy, is not always a good thing).
Below is a list of the top NBA salaries for this season. First, wow, that's some serious cabbage. Second, Rashard Lewis? Wow, that's a Mike Hampton-level bad cotnract right there. Here's the question: If you could be a pro in basketball, football or baseball, which one do you take? Discuss, and check on the NBA salaries.
2011 / 2012 SALARIES
- Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers — $25.2 million
- Rashard Lewis, Washington Wizards — $22.1 million
- Tim Duncan, San Antonio Spurs — $21.3 million
- Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics — $21.2 million
- Gilbert Arenas, Orlando Magic — $19.2 million
- Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Mavericks — $19.0 million
- Pau Gasol, Los Angeles Lakers — $18.7 million
- Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks — $18.5 million
- Amar'e Stoudemire, New York Knicks — $18.2 million
- Joe Johnson, Atlanta Hawks — $18.0 million
- Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic — $17.8 million
- Elton Brand, Philadelphia 76ers — $17.0 million
- Deron Williams, New Jersey Nets — $16.3 million
- Chris Paul, L.A. Clippers — $16.3 million
- LeBron James, Miami Heat — $16.0 million
- Chris Bosh, Miami Heat — $16.0 million
- Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat — $15.5 million
- Paul Pierce, Boston Celtics — $15.3 million
- Andrew Bynum, Los Angeles Lakers — $15.1 million
- Antawn Jamison, Cleveland Cavaliers — $15.0 million
Jay was named the Sports Editor of the Times Free Press in 2003 and started with the newspaper in May 2002 as the Deputy Sports Editor. He was born and raised in Smyrna, Ga., and graduated from Auburn University before starting his newspaper career in 1997 with the Newnan (Ga.) Times Herald. Stops in Clayton and Henry counties in Georgia and two years as the Sports Editor of the Marietta (Ga.) Daily Journal preceded Jay’s ...