5-at-10: Brady's bunch, three-peat face-off, is Saban worth it

5-at-10: Brady's bunch, three-peat face-off, is Saban worth it

June 4th, 2014 by Jay Greeson in Sports - Columns

Hey gang, hope you have a great Hump Day. Reminder: Clemson coach Dabo Swinney will join Press Row around 3:30. Good times.

From the "Talks too much" studios, it's go time.

Trouble with analytics

Hey we dig the new stat wave in sports. The calculations that can size up anything and rationalize everything. It's cool and it's another tool by which we can measure and debate and discuss sports.

Peyton Manning

Photo by Contributed Photo/Times Free Press.

Some of these metrics have met with some resistance from old-school folks and we can understand the love for the old-school stats and feelings.

We're somewhere in the middle in this debate and can see the merits of each in truth.

Where the new school stuff finds trouble is when the outliner stats line up and people like Pro Football Focus (a new-school stats bunch that has done some cool stuff) tries to convince us Tom Brady is not a top-five quarterback.

PUH-lease. Brady is a top-five quarterback all-time and to say he's not a top-five QB in today's game is silly.

In fact, even considering age and value, there are not many QBs out there the Pats would trade Brady for.

To suggest the top five QBs in today's NFL are not Manning, Brady, Rodgers, Brees and then whomever you have fifth is wrong, regardless of the statistical protractor you're using.

(Side note: We'd have Luck there at No. 5 but that's us.)

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Bulls or Heat

We will breakdown the Spurs-Heat in tomorrow's 5-at-10. Today, we're going to go back in time (yes, Spy, like Huey Lewis)

Miami Heat guard Ray Allen (34) drives to the basket as Indiana Pacers guard C.J. Watson (32) defends, during their Game 6 in the NBA playoffs Eastern Conference finals on May 30, 2014, in Miami.

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

Horace Grant said this week on radio that the Miami Heat would not "stand a chance" against his Chicago Bulls and Michael Jordan.

Of course we expect Grant, who was the third best player on that first run of three-peats with MJ and Pippen and the boys.

We however disagree with Grant - and in fact believe that the second round of three-peats for Chicago with MJ, Pippen, Rodman and Toni Kukoc were even better than Grant's bunch.

Still, to ever say a team with LeBron James does not stand a chance against anyone is silly. Consider this fact: In LeBron's last season in Cleveland, the Cavs had the best record in the NBA. The next year when James was in Miami, the Cavs had the worst record in the NBA.

Plus, while Jordan is the best player ever, James may be the best athlete to ever play in the NBA, and to think that James, at 6-foot-8, 265 pounds, would not be a match-up problem for Jordan on each end is silly.

It would have made for great drama.

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Nick Saban

Nick Saban

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

As TFP ace columnist Mark Wiedmer wrote here, Nick Saban got a nice raise approved Tuesday. Saban's annual financial return will be $6.9 million with planned bonuses.

In truth, as crazy as this sounds, Saban's underpaid. That's especially true if you believe true value is determined by what would another enterprise pay you.

If Tennessee struggles the next couple of years and offered Saban $10 million would that shock you? Probably not. If Alabama matched it and offered $11 million would that surprise us? Certainly not.

The question will soon become where does this stop?

Common discourse forces us to think there has to be a tipping point on this, right? So where's the ceiling and is Saban worth it?

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This and that

Seattle Mariners' John Buck (4) celebrates with Dustin Ackley (13) as he scores after hitting a two-run home run in the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday, June 3, 2014, in Atlanta.

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

- The Braves led 4-0 after an inning and lost 7-5 Tuesday to the Mariners. Alex Wood took the loss in relief. Of note: Tommy La Stella got two more hits and is hitting .421 (8-for-17). He has two hits in each of his last three games; Danny Struggla had two hits in May. So there's that.

- Here's Paschall's report on UGA safety Tray Matthews riding off into the sunset http://timesfreepress.com/news/2014/jun/04/richt-dismisses-safety-tray-matthews/. Matthews took to the Twitter to say he's headed to either Louisville (a landing spot for Georgia cast-offs) or Auburn (the SEC unofficial outpost for lost causes and 6-foot-3 homeless studs).

- Here's the Q&A with Will Wade from Tuesday's Press Row. http://timesfreepress.com/news/2014/jun/04/wade-has-more-spending-money-for-bahamas-trip/ Good times.

-Here's Downtown Patrick Brown's report on Donnie Knoxville and his Vols' chemistry experiments. http://timesfreepress.com/news/2014/jun/04/tyndalls-vols-basically-starting-back-over/

- Yes, Bill Gates is rolling in the dough. In fact, Gates makes so much money per year, statistically speaking, it is a misuse of his time to bend over and pick up a $100 bill. Still, this story from Yahoo finance adjusts the richest folks in our country's history. John D. Rockefeller is No. 1 all-time and his adjusted fortune was estimated at $253 billion in today's dollars.

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Today's question

The Beastie Boys appear to be on the splits. Tough break.

What's your favorite Beastie Boys song?

Also, in the world of sports and pop culture, who is on our Rushmore of the greatest debuts?

Go.