Is Dalvin Cook really worth the risk

It was recently reported across sports news that Vikings RB, Dalvin Cook, will not participate in the Vikings’ off-season activities, and will not take part in training camp until his contract is extended. Basically, he is saying, he will not be showing up for camp or anytime afterwards.
This is a huge obvious problem for me, and others.
Cook was surely a huge part of the Vikings’ success in 2019, with 1135 rushing yards, 519 receiving yards, and 13 TDs, and was a colossal reason why they were as good as they have been. He is an amazing RB, and Minnesota Vikings could struggle without him, the dual threat RB is very special, his breakaway speed is awesome, he can bust off a huge run in the open field, like very few.
But, I am getting fed up with these players who complain about the millions they make – it seems as if they just don’t care about playing the game nearly as much anymore. It has gotten to be 100% all about the money these days, I am not saying players shouldn’t be paid relative to their worth on the field to their teams.
But overall, for what they do, they are simply overpaid, there, I said it.
Let’s be honest, they are playing a game.
For money.
I think many more players need to remember, they could very easily be mopping floors or flipping burgers instead of being blessed with the amazing opportunity to enjoy their work and making tons of cash, they are not engineers, soldiers, or doctors.
They run with a ball in their hands and score TDs.
I love sports, and I love competition and the eye popping skills – I rarely get involved with the financial part of it – because it annoys me, quite honestly. But, I also feel players should be appreciative – teams should pay them well – but when anyone is making millions /year to play a game they grew up loving, they should cherish the opportunity. Don’t kick it in the face, and ask for more, because the other guy is making 2 million more per year. When a guy is making 5 million and another guy is making 7 million /year, is there really that much of a difference, or is it egotism and bragging rights coming into play?
Anyway, I digress.
Dalvin Cook has a year left on his rookie contract – I have always felt if a player produces like they have been able to show they can – and they stay healthy – the money and contract will take care of itself.
Don’t get me wrong, I love watching me some Dalvin Cook – but he’s been hurt every year he’s played.
He has missed 19 games in 3 seasons – which is almost 40% of the games available.
That’s tough.
For Minnesota to lock him down at a high end cap hit is gonna hurt the team, and the Vikings can’t rely on him to stay healthy. Dropping too much cash into a RB doesn’t always seem to pay off most of the time, from what I have seen.
I’d hate to see him go, but if we are being 100% honest, Minnesota could also benefit from trading him, and fill some of the voids that need to be addressed.
Maybe the Vikes should just unload him for picks or some Oline help, and lets be truthful about the Minnesota issues, they don’t really have the money to pay him a whole bunch more. Look what happened with AP, Minnesota kept him too long, after he had run his course, and became a shell of the back he once was – and they didn’t get very much for him, maybe the Vikings make a move and move him?
The Vikings are lucky to have really strong young backs that can fill the void if this goes sideways – with Alexander Mattison and Mike Boone, both who have shown to be able to handle carries. Mattison had a 4.6 avg when running the rock, and he also showed some trustworthy hands out of the backfield, Boone and Mattison played pretty good when they were given the opportunity to log some carries. Boone had some solid stuff – and Mattison showed some bona fide skills last season.
I understand he wants to get paid and he deserves more than what he is currently getting, but he is still in his initial contract, and hasn’t shown the durability to stay on the field for 16 games in a season yet. I also feel a RB should be able to handle 200+ carries without injury – otherwise maybe he doesn’t deserve the big massive payday contract. Derrick Henry had 303 carries in 2019, Christian McCaffrey is as durable as they come in this game, Ezekiel Elliott handles the ball 290+ times /season since 2016.
That is a lot of work.
I think maybe Dalvin’s contract should have language in – it protects the team, if he gets hurt, I think there needs to be an injury clause.
His injury history hasn’t been great.
I love Dalvin, he was my favorite RB coming out of FSU – but holding out for a RB, who has had 1 season of big production and more history of injuries, isn’t a great thing, in my opinion.
The Vikings have 2 very capable backs behind him, in Mattison and Boone – the Vikings may end up letting him go, and go with Matteson as their RB1, and then use Boone as their RB2, we would see if they can handle the load. I would rather Dalvin, but he isn’t worth 13 million /season, he needs to show he can stay on the field with no injuries.
I think he is good for around 7m /year, which is a huge increase, and a ton of money, it is still pretty team friendly, he would be revered by fans, and he would also be looked at as a good person and a team guy. Minnesota has to be careful with this – and not pay too much, as he has been injury prone and RBs tend to have a short shelf life to begin with.
I’m of the old school mindset that when you sign a document saying you commit to something you follow through, that’s another problem I have.
These guys are under contract. Him holding out might not work out, Cook complaining about making more money might cost him his job with the Vikings – and we know risk assessment is important.
Dalvin is very good, but he is also a risk.

Will Lamar Jackson have another MVP year

Russell Wilson was awesome this season with 4110 passing YDs, 31 TDs, and just 5 picks – Christian McCaffrey had a monstrous season with 2392 total yards from scrimmage and 15 TDs, and Derrick Henry can’t go unrecognized with his 1540 rushing YDs and leading the NFL with 16 rushing TDs for the NFL this season.
But then there’s Lamar Jackson – what Lamar did was beyond any semblance of normal – 36 passing TDs and 7 rushing TDs are pretty hard to overlook. With 6 games of 300+ of total offensive yards including 4 games of 100+ rushing yards or better, he dominated the AFC. Teams knew he was coming and he still racked up 4333 YDs of offense for Baltimore this season.
Lamar made the Baltimore Ravens Oline look better than they are – the Ravens have the same front that couldn’t block for Joe Flacco. As Baltimore’s Oline was banged up quite a bit – guys that were hurt for numerous games – so they barely had the same front all season long. If Jackson couldn’t get outside the pocket, when things went sideways – there would have been a lot more sacks. The 23 year old QB also did more with less with his receiving corps – as he only had Mark Andrews and Marquise Brown as his primary guys to throw to, and neither are really looked at as elite players, that are ripping up teams on the field. Lamar had very few weapons around him, but was lucky to be on a team that has a defense one that gave up just 17.6 ppg – which I think is based solely on the fact of their offense being so potent. The defense was able to tee off – because they found themselves ahead and putting up so many points – it forced teams to start throwing. Their receivers wouldn’t be starters for most offenses in the NFL. Andrews is a solid weapon – but otherwise they don’t have a ton of guys to throw the ball to, without Lamar – the Baltimore Ravens probably win 6-8 games. Tops.
Jackson put together an amazing season while leading his team to 14 wins – including wins over he Niners and the Pats and they hung 33 pts per game because of him. The MVP is the player who was most valuable to his team, the guy who, if without him, the team would’ve been a middling team at best.
That is what the NFL MVP should be – it has been slowly turning into the player who is the most flashy over the last few years. We have to really remember the MVP is for the most valuable player – not necessarily the player that did the coolest things. At the beginning of the season, the Ravens were projected to finish around 3rd place in the North – but suddenly people are going to say he has a great amazing team – I don’t think so. Lamar Jackson was fun to watch. He led the league in TD passes with 36 – and he lit up the ground with 1206 YDs on the ground rushing, giving him a total of 4333 yards of offense he was responsible for.
Pretty top notch.
Conventional, no.
Everybody’s cup of tea, no.
But a weapon on the field, absolutely. How long his career lasts, who knows – but for now, his timing and rushing ability was pretty phenomenal to watch.
Lamar Jackson was the #1 reason Baltimore won the games they did this season. And without the 23 year old – the Ravens would never have accomplished much of anything nearly as to what they did during the 2019 campaign.

Do the Dallas Mavs have high expectations

Many people believe the Dallas Mavericks are one of the “new hopes” of the NBA. But, they still have to prove they can play atop the Western Conference with the big boys – and they have to prove they can go and take it – by not letting LA run roughshod. I think we can all agree the Mavericks are getting better and, perhaps, can win the NBA championship – of course it is possible for Luka and company.

They are currently tied up at 2 games apiece in the playoffs.
What should we expect, and what could we expect?
They have a solid combination of scorers who can pound teams quickly, before opposing defenses are completely set up, Dallas is sitting at 3rd in the NBA at 116 ppg. They have a very efficient style that is a lot of fun to watch.

It’s scary to think about how nasty the Mavs can be, if all on the same page. Especially as Luka Doncic is still just 21 years old – and I don’t think he has come close to moving into his prime yet, he is only getting better. His numbers have been remarkably dynamic over the last 2 seasons, so it’s hard to imagine he is just going to fade away anytime soon. The rock will be in his hands, a lot – and good things always happen, when that happens. I fully expect Luka to be the impressive offensive player he always has been.

Doncic led the Dallas Mavericks in scoring in last seasons journey with 21ppg, as well as assists per game at 6.0 – but they finished at just 33-49. Which was rough, they had been a steady 50-55 win team since 2000 – with 12 seasons winning 50 or more games since then, but recently had started to slip. Luka is and always will be a very tough cover, his shooting and skills on the court are without question, the soul of this team.
Kristaps Porzingis – the deadly PF – still needs to improve his post up game down low, in my opinion. This will put him even that much tougher to defend, with his size and shooting skills – but it would also put Porzingis in a better position to use his 7-3 length and get more rebounds.
His 9.5 rpg is solid, but could be a 12-13/game player.
Another area that he can improve in, is his passing – he plays it safe, always looking to just making the safe play – he doesnt punch when in the corner. I don’t want risky – but someone who fights back with a couple haymakers when shoved in the corner. Porzingis rarely takes any risks with his passing, he seems to be preoccupied with making the “right” decision. The 7-3 Latvian rarely drives and kicks out – I would expect that to keep improving with Luka and Hardaway lurking around the arc, knocking it down from downtown.
But, overall, Porzingis has been stellar over his 4 year career. He has really shown what he can do in Dallas – and he is showing it off, and has had 3+ turnovers in a game only 9 times this season – but has also had 3+ assists in just 15 games this season as well.
One of the biggest questions for the Mavs will be – is Tim Hardaway getting around the 15 shots/game that he was getting over the last 2 seasons timeframe. Something is going to have to give being that he is surrounded by so many other scoring options in Dallas, and there are more important things to do for the team. His scoring ability is underrated – but they have some big time players just like VegasTopDogs has big time handicapping experts.
This season, he has been getting up an average of 12.6 shots /game, and when he is putting up 16 or more shots /game – the Mavs have not been winning – his ball movement is more important to their winning ways. When Tim gets 16 shots up, the Mavs are just 5-9, when he gets 4+ assists the Mavs are 9-4.
The most interesting member of Dallas will likely be the veteran Hardaway – with Luka and Porzingis as far bigger scoring options. The 27 year old SG was dropped into the scoring option 3 spot for this team – as his numbers had been trending upward over the 2016-2018 seasons, going from 14 to 18ppg since 2016. But with Doncic scoring at a 29ppg clip, and Porzingis getting his 19 /game – Tim getting his scoring chances can be inconsistent.
The Dallas Mavericks have made the end of the season, and the upcoming NBA playoffs very exciting. Regardless of whether the Mavericks win it all during this weird NBA season, they have a fun talented team to watch – and there are even better days ahead in Dallas – without question. If they dont prevail in the playoffs vs the Clippers or Lakers – it’s perfectly understandable. As fun and exciting as Dallas look on paper, it takes a lot to win it all – many forget that many great teams have been beaten in the NBA playoffs with even better teams. If the Mavs lose, you can’t pin it on Luka or Porzingis – but if the Mavericks win it all – it would be pretty amazing.

Why the Los Angeles Clippers are going to win the NBA Championship

The LA Clippers are entering the playoffs as the #2 seed in the West. They made a magnificent splash with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George and then when you look at their overall talent, they have a really solid contender on their court. This is a team that is hungry. Since 1980, they have had 23 seasons with a 40% or less winning percentage, they have been the joke to their big brother in LA. But, now, they believe they can win a championship with Leonard and George leading the team. Their offense has been daunting, at 4th in the league, and their defense is better than most teams. Let’s look at why they will win it this season.

All teams shoot to get their dangerous combination on the court – but there always seems to be a combination that just works.
Enter Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

When in form and in full health, Paul George is a top 10 player and a sure winner.
I firmly believe that.
George has been banged up in his past – but he has emerged as a better player than he ever was. He lost everything but 6 games during his 2014 season, then bounced back in 2015 with 23ppg, then in 2018 he averaged 28 ppg and led the NBA at 2.2 steals /game. He has shown astonishing resilience and determination. Then in this last off-season George was grabbed by the Clips, as art of their hard push. George is an excellent creator with the ball in his hands, and is unafraid to put the ball on the floor and take it to the rack. He can create buckets whether attacking the rim, or kicking out to one of their veteran guards, to drop a trey.

George has great confidence in his game, has shown awesome touch from behind the arc, is a deft passer and can clean the glass, on both the defensive and on the offensive side. He is also making threes at just about a 41% clip which is more than enough to keep a defense honest.

No one sees Kawhi Leonard coming. He just quietly shows up and then so many games later, he is either winning MVP’s, or winning championships. Leonard is one of the top 3 players in the NBA right now, hands down. He had a sensational finals against the Warriors last season, when they were supposed to be wrecked, by loading up 28.5ppg and 9.8rpg. He has shown he can walk onto a good team and instantly make it a championship team.

The 6-7 SF has grown, before our eyes, especially over the last 2 seasons, after his San Antonio debacle- into a good shooter, a fierce defender and a smart player who can lead a team. No one seems to pay attention, until you look at the scoreboard and see you’re losing and he has quietly put up 25 and 10. He doesn’t force the game, and is sneaky good. The 28 year old superstar has the absolute heart to lead this team to a title. The Klaw and PG13 feed off of each other and are as dangerous a duo as anyone in the game.

Having major superstars Leonard and George along with a stellar bench is enormous. The Clippers have a great group of bench players that can all hang some quick buckets, and provide excellent relief for the starters. Montrezl Harrell is averaging 18.6ppg off the bench, while Lou Williams is averaging 18.5ppg and 5.7apg off the bench. These guys alone, would likely start on almost every other team in the league.

Williams is a sharpshooting backup SG who has been hitting 36% from deep during the regular season, in 29 minutes per game during his 2019 season. Harrell is one of the best reserve bigs in the league, he is more than a handful and super efficient – as long as he is healthy. They have a huge offensive advantage when they get the production they get from off the bench, they can legitimately go 10 men deep every single night without losing much productivity. Going deep into their rotation and keeping a serviceable player on the court at all times, is huge. And they have that option.

So many have swooned and cheered over the “other LA team” but I don’t think anyone should forget the Clippers, the “cousin Oliver” to the Lakers team. The Lakers made some huge headlines over last off-season with the moves they made – but I still think I trust the Clippers offense more than the Lakers right now.

A winning mindset is needed to have to compete for a title, and the Clippers have that, along with other right pieces in place. The Clippers have a sweet roster, they have a top coach, and they have an impressive bench that can swing things. They have a good case as to why they will win it all this season. I feel that if they can stay healthy – then they have the ability to win it all.

MLB is back, and it’s bringing the DH with it

Baseball is coming back towards the end of July, officially on the 23rd or 24th. I am genuinely really looking forward to it, it’s going to be great to have competitive team sports getting back.
We are getting a much shorter season, of 60 games, I feel cutting the season down to less than 40% of the normal season will give it more importance in regular season play. Baseball is a traditional summer sport, and has always been a great American pastime, but, for me, it’s slow patient pace has always left it behind football, basketball, and hockey.
All much faster paced sports.
But, here I am, and I couldn’t be happier about baseball coming back, sure it is going to be a strange season, with just 60 games. We are getting sports back, and that’s great!
Now, not to be “that guy” – but players did come off pretty greedy during the negotiations – the entire labor negotiation between everyone involved, actually, was pretty derisive to the fans. Personally, I was turned off by the greed on all sides, with players saying that they just wanted to play, and then blaming the owners. Meanwhile, then saying they won’t play – unless they get their 30 million. The whole thing was a mess and didn’t paint the players in a good light – but, I digress. I think in the end, we are long overdue for a serious salary cap to be put in place.
But, anyway, in the end, they were able to hammer it out, and get us games on the field.
The season is going to be bringing in a big change and some are not looked at in the most favorable light. The one I think is the most intriguing and bugs traditionalists the most, is the universal designated hitter.
There will be a DH on every team.
Personally, I love the universal DH idea. For years, we have been watching pitchers struggle to make any sort of contact with the ball – it is beyond embarrassing. When you have .135 and .156 averages coming to the plate, it is not competitive, and it is extremely downtrodden when there are 2 outs already. I feel the DH is better for the game, bringing a player who you know can swing the stick.
I feel the introduction and coming of the DH to the National League was coming either way, so I am all for the universal DH adjustment. And I don’t think anyone should be shocked if it sticks around after this season is over. I think this is going to be the norm, going forward, after this is over. The players seem like they all want it – and it is great for guys that can’t really play a position on the field anymore, but can still hit.
Especially the older guys, like Ken Griffey Jr. and Albert Pujols played parts of their great careers at DH. Does anyone think any less of them?
I don’t think so.
It seems that the ones that don’t want it – are the traditional baseball fans. I understand the culture – but maybe it is time for a change.
A change to improve upon a sport that America holds dear, but can use some changes and upgrades. And, as far as a batting pitcher goes – when a team is paying a guy $30 million a year to pitch – it’s irresponsible to risk losing him to injury from running the bases or going to bat.
Don’t get me wrong – change isn’t always good.
But, sometimes it isn’t so bad.
After all this quarantine and absurdity that we have been dealing with for the last 3 months and then with no sports, for sports fans, it has been rough. It is inspirational and outstanding that we’re slowly trying to get back to normalcy, Japan and China have been playing baseball for some time now – so, so can the MLB.
I strongly think that every team has a chance to get in, if I were a team, I wouldn’t even focus on looking to get the best record, I would aim more for about 35 wins. I think that will be a solid number to get to the postseason. The MLB didn’t have to bring back the season – I am grateful that they are bringing us something. I will truly appreciate having some baseball in this weird year – even with all the complaints that are coming with it.

MLB is coming back, and it’s bringing the DH with it

The 2020 Major League Baseball season will begin on July 23 and is scheduled to end on September 27. The postseason will begin on September 29. The World Series is set to begin on October 20 and a potential Game 7 will be played on October 28.

I am genuinely really looking forward to it, it’s going to be great to have competitive team sports getting back.
We are getting a much shorter season, of 60 games, I feel cutting the season down to less than 40% of the normal season will give it more importance in regular season play. Baseball is a traditional summer sport, and has always been a great American pastime, but, for me, it’s slow patient pace has always left it behind football, basketball, and hockey.
All much faster paced sports.
But, here I am, and I couldn’t be happier about baseball coming back, sure it is going to be a strange season, with just 60 games. We are getting sports back, and that’s great!
Now, not to be “that guy” – but players did come off pretty greedy during the negotiations – the entire labor negotiation between everyone involved, actually, was pretty derisive to the fans. Personally, I was turned off by the greed on all sides, with players saying that they just wanted to play, and then blaming the owners. Meanwhile, then saying they won’t play – unless they get their 30 million. The whole thing was a mess and didn’t paint the players in a good light – but, I digress. I think in the end, we are long overdue for a serious salary cap to be put in place.
But, anyway, in the end, they were able to hammer it out, and get us games on the field.
The season is going to be bringing in a big change and some are not looked at in the most favorable light. The one I think is the most intriguing and bugs traditionalists the most, is the universal designated hitter.
There will be a DH on every team.
Personally, I love the universal DH idea. For years, we have been watching pitchers struggle to make any sort of contact with the ball – it is beyond embarrassing. When you have .135 and .156 averages coming to the plate, it is not competitive, and it is extremely downtrodden when there are 2 outs already. I feel the DH is better for the game, bringing a player who you know can swing the stick.
I feel the introduction and coming of the DH to the National League was coming either way, so I am all for the universal DH adjustment. And I don’t think anyone should be shocked if it sticks around after this season is over. I think this is going to be the norm, going forward, after this is over. The players seem like they all want it – and it is great for guys that can’t really play a position on the field anymore, but can still hit.
Especially the older guys, like Ken Griffey Jr. and Albert Pujols played parts of their great careers at DH. Does anyone think any less of them?
I don’t think so.
It seems that the ones that don’t want it – are the traditional baseball fans. I understand the culture – but maybe it is time for a change.
A change to improve upon a sport that America holds dear, but can use some changes and upgrades. And, as far as a batting pitcher goes – when a team is paying a guy $30 million a year to pitch – it’s irresponsible to risk losing him to injury from running the bases or going to bat.
Don’t get me wrong – change isn’t always good.
But, sometimes it isn’t so bad.
After all this quarantine and absurdity that we have been dealing with for the last 3 months and then with no sports, for sports fans, it has been rough. It is inspirational and outstanding that we’re slowly trying to get back to normalcy, Japan and China have been playing baseball for some time now – so, so can the MLB.
I strongly think that every team has a chance to get in, if I were a team, I wouldn’t even focus on looking to get the best record, I would aim more for about 35 wins. I think that will be a solid number to get to the postseason. The MLB didn’t have to bring back the season – I am grateful that they are bringing us something. I will truly appreciate having some baseball in this weird year – even with all the complaints that are coming with it.

The NHL is bringing some great ideas for the playoffs

Since the NHL went on suspension back on March 12 – which in case you were wondering, was along time ago – there have been numerous potential playoff formats thrown out. As, of course, the NHL paused its season, like the world did – with obvious concerns over the Coronavirus.
Which have brought out lots of responses on what was going to happen, well it looks as if the NHL playoffs are coming, albeit they will not be holding a normal postseason – and they have gotten some interesting changes and are very creative. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced a top 24 team playoff format – which will feature the top 12 teams in each conference based off each team’s record at the time the league was put on hold.

The NHL has created a modified playoff format in which 24 of the teams will return to the ice – playing for the Stanley Cup at 2 different “hub” cities. Each Conference will have their own “hub” city with their own arena for the teams to play. There is going to be a qualifying round with a round robin “play in” round – which will then roll into the 1st round for the Stanley Cup playoffs. Using this unique opportunity to get creative with their playoff format, and going forward with a season, that many thought could have been lost – opens the door for a lot of neat things happening, and getting a satisfying ending to get a Stanley Cup champion for the season.

The NHL had played roughly 85% of the regular season, that started back in early October, so the vast majority of the season was over – and they don’t want to go too deep into the summer or fall. I don’t think they would want to run against other sports trying to get themselves organized – they want eyes peeled for their sport. The biggest advantage teams like St. Louis and Boston will have – is that they were a top 4 team at the time of the pause, and they will not have to play in the play in rounds. But the teams that were looking at squeaking in and on the cusp essentially have to earn their spots, it might be a strange and weird look this season – but the situation we have been dealt this year has been more than weird, as well.

The seeding and playoffs will look like this;
The top 4 seeds in each conference automatically advance to the traditional 16 team playoff structure, so the top teams are in, no concerns for the best of the best.
The top 25% of the teams.
Giving them a bye from the qualifier round – but those teams will then play each other once to seed the order of the top 4 for the playoffs.
Ok, thats fun.

Then we have the other teams – seeds 5 through 12.
They will need to play their way in – through the qualifying round, which is a best of 5 format.
Having a qualifying round – is basically giving teams that were still trying to fight for a playoff spot – a chance to make up ground that they may have made up throughout the rest of the regular season.
The winners of those games, then advance to the 1st round of the playoffs.
This sounds great to me.
It brings toughness, grit, and excitement, all things I want from my hockey.

So let’s take an early look at what we are going to see when the NHL returns to the ice.

In HUB 1 –
In the Round Robin seeding in 1st round
1. Boston Bruins ( 100pts)
2. Tampa Bay Lightning ( 92pts)
3. Washington Capitals ( 90pts)
4. Philadelphia Flyers ( 89pts)

HUB 1 – The best of 5 Qualifying round
#5 Pittsburgh Penguins ( 86pts) vs. #12 Montreal Canadiens ( 71pts)
#6 Carolina Hurricanes ( 81pts) vs. #11 New York Rangers ( 79pts)
#7 New York Islanders ( 80pts) vs. #10 Florida Panthers ( 78pts)
#8 Toronto Maple Leafs ( 81pts) vs. #9 Columbus Blue Jackets ( 81pts)

In HUB 2 –
In the Round Robin seeding in 1st round
1. St. Louis Blues ( 94pts)
2. Colorado Avalanche ( 92pts)
3. Vegas Golden Knights ( 86pts)
4. Dallas Stars ( 82pts)

HUB 2 – The best of 5 Qualifying round
#5 Edmonton Oilers ( 83pts) vs. #12 Chicago Blackhawks ( 72pts)
#6 Nashville Predators ( 78pts) vs. #11 Arizona Coyotes ( 74pts)
#7 Vancouver Canucks ( 78pts) vs. #10 Minnesota Wild ( 77pts)
#8 Calgary Flames ( 79pts) vs. #9 Winnipeg Jets ( 80pts)

In the return – a playoff series between the blazing centers of the Oilers vs an aging, tough, veteran goalie Corey Crawford, and a team that can make plays like Toronto vs a Columbus team, that has struggled to close games out, sounds pretty darn great to me.
Who chokes?
Who plays bigger than life and carries their teams?
Let’s get this show on the road!

The NBA return will be very interesting

There have been reports all over the news, that the NBA is looking at the possibility of picking up play relatively soon. Players are working out, getting ready for the next step, as they need to start getting mentally and physically ready for the final push of the NBA season. I would think that most players are ready to get back on the court and finish the season they started.
The NBA is targeting July 31st 2020 for a return to play, per Charania. NBA commissioner Adam Silver and the league office informed Board of Governors that July 31 is a target date for return of season, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.
The NBA seems like they are going to be able to move forward with the season, including an interesting playoff format. There have been talks of having an expanded playoff, a notion that essentially would have teams that were on the brink of making it during the season to play in to get the final spots. The NBA could have “play in” playoffs for teams that were close to the 8th seed – this could be a ton of fun, and borderline brilliant. It would bring excitement to teams that were catching momentum late in the season, until stoppage, or banged up, and were thinking they were done. The NBA having essentially 2 sets of playoffs, one for the top tiered teams and another for the lower tiered teams trying to get in, would be awesome. With a compromised on court season, some teams were already packing it in – this could change that mindset – this breathes new life into them.
From what I have seen, and heard, there won’t be fans, and home court advantage will be nullified, as games will be played at a neutral court and our VegasTopDogs experts will be ready.
Things are going to be different in many ways. The season finishing and playoffs impending, can not only bring some closure to the league’s season, but also some much needed sports excitement. Of course, the playoffs popping up at this stage of the year, could very well lead to the Finals this year going into August, which would be very different. And obviously, the sooner the playoffs begin, then, the sooner the brass can start figuring out when next season can start, with some basis of a game-plan in place.
You cant get to step 2, until you get through step 1.
I think it would be unfair if the NBA went directly to the playoffs, like some have suggested. Especially, when there are teams like the Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans and the Sacramento Kings, who were all very much in striking distance of getting into the playoffs in that 8th slot, as the West is filled with teams that can make that jump in. Yes there are some teams altered in some way from the time off – like Philly and Portland, but in basketball, notably, I feel that the better team wins the series, probably 90% of the time. And if a team like the Lakers cannot handle the 8th seed, regardless of who it would be, then maybe there is something to be said there.
We miss the euphoric escape of sports. Sports is something that brings people alive and fills is with excitement. I feel society as a whole, need sports entertainment – we can watch flowers grow, only for so long. It’s good to feel that win as your team is on top at the end of the buzzer, and it is great fun to watch fast paced action with great athletes. These players are getting paid lots of money a year, these guys are young, hungry and competitors, although some are hesitant – I would believe the vast majority of the guys want to compete, at least I would hope so. Anything that brings back some keyhole semblance of basketball, and gets us back to normalcy is going to be accepted. Some may be excited and sit with their fingers crossed – others may not want the season back, under these circumstances – but I think, no – I know – regardless of which side of the fence you stand on, basketball fans will watch the games that return.

Five Coaches on the Hot Seat

The NFL is unique in so many ways and the leash that is afforded coaches is unlike any we see in most of the other professional or even college ranks. Basketball coaches typically receive three seasons (or at least two) to get things back in place unless the results are brutal. Major League Baseball is usually at least two. The NFL is an entirely different animal though as we have seen in recent years with the examples being one and dones Steve Wilks in Arizona and Jim Tomzula in San Francisco. Hell, the Chargers fired Marty Schottenheimer in 2006 after he went 14-2.

 

Today, I want to take a look at the top five NFL coaches who are feeling the heat this season from most likely to be “relieved” of their duties to the least likely.

1-Dan Quinn-Atlanta Falcons

You want to talk about toeing the line, Quinn might be standing on it. The Falcons have a very good quarterback and have surrounded him with weapons in recent seasons but it is always something. They either turn the ball over in the RedZone or don’t get the ball to Julio Jones enough. On the defensive side of the ball they seem to rarely ever stop anyone and this season they let Vic Beasley walk. The Falcons are now three seasons removed from the greatest Super Bowl collapse in history and two seasons removed from their last playoff appearance. Owner Arthur Blank is not going to want to waste his window with Ryan/Gurley/Jones/Ridley for more than one more season.

2-Pat Shurmur-New York Giants

Being from New England, I know a lot of Giants fans and they aren’t happy. Shurmur is 9-23 in two seasons with the Giants and is riding superstar Saquon Barkley into the ground. After the disaster that was the Ben McAdoo era, you have to think that the Giants are ready to make a splash and Shurmur cannot lean on his resume’ for any more leash as his career record coaching record is 19-46.

3-Zac Taylor-Cincinnati Bengals

This one is probably not fair but life isn’t fair and it’s even less fair in the NFL. The one saving grace here is that the Bengals have not been typically quick on the trigger historically. Only Sam Wyche, their first coach, received two seasons or fewer but if the Bengals go 2-14 or 3-13 this season, Taylor is going to be sweating.

 

4-Doug Marrone-Jacksonville Jaguars

The once-promising window for the Jaguars has been slammed shut over the last two seasons and a 11-21 record leading to two last-place division finishes. This offseason, the organization has shaken up its coaching staff, front office, and scouting department. They have also moved on from Nick Foles to Gardner Minshew and parted with Calais Campbell in the offseason after trading Jalen Ramsey during the season. The winds of change are blowing in Jacksonville and Doug Marrone might swept away if the Jags aren’t able to find a rhythm that led to a first place finish in 2017.

5-Anthony Lynn-Los Angeles Chargers

If you have been reading any of my preseason wagers and projections you already know, I am not an Anthony Lynn fan. If you have watched Chargers games in recent seasons you already know, every game is an adventure with at least one “what the?” call coming from the Chargers sideline and Phillip Rivers absolutely losing his mind about something. Well, Rivers and his Hall of Fame career are now gone and it could get ugly in a hurry. My guess is that unless this team signs Cam Newton or Jameis Winston as a stop-gap, they are going to be one of the three worst in the NFL and Lynn will be gone.

 

If you are betting on which NFL Coach loses his job first; head to RealBookies.com; our favorite pay per head bookie site!

 

 

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Here’s what you should know about the 2020 NFL Draft

There is uncertainty regarding the return of many leagues right now, due to the Covid-19 crisis, as we all know, but the NFL, given its scheduled to return until August, for the pre-season, has tried to keep everything in place and hope that things will go back to normal before then. All of us sports fans are hoping the same, and by August, we expect to be back on track and getting ready to enjoy a new season.

However, the first big event of the new NFL season will take place much sooner, in late April, if everything goes as planned; we’re talking about the 2020 NFL Draft, which is set to take place from April 23rd to 25th in Paradise, Nevada. As we all well know, the NFL Draft is the event where all the different teams in the league get to choose their newest and youngest stars, fresh out of college; it is a very important event, as it can mark the present and future for many teams, depending on how many good or bad decisions they make during those three days.

This will be the 85th edition of the NFL Draft, with a total of 255 selections in 7 rounds, and the Cincinnati Bengals will be the ones to choose first.

Sports wagering applied to the NFL Draft

For a long time, the sports betting industry has made it a tradition to offer lines and propositions for the NFL Draft, and it has become a very expected event by gamblers from all over. In fact, this injects some extra adrenaline from way before, as gamblers follow the NCAA Football season with a close eye, so that they’re able to make better betting choices for each year’s draft.

Joining a good Price per Head service provider will assure you and your bookie operation that you will be able to deal these lines and much more for your players, which we’re sure will be eager to make their choices, even more, this year, with the lack of sports events these days.

Some of the options that are usually available to bet on for the Draft, include, for example, total number of offensive players vs defensive players selected in the first round, total of players selected from different NCAA conferences, like ACC, Big Ten, Pac 12 and so on, or total players selected from specific teams, some of the favorites, of course, like Alabama, LSU, Ohio State, etc.  

 

Other NFL bets available right now

It’s important that, as a bookie, you make sure to be offering your players everything they’re looking for right now, and even more during this health crisis. As we said, the NFL is not expected to deal with many abrupt changes, and so, sportsbooks from all over the world are offering future bets like odds to win the Super Bowl, odds to win conferences and divisions, odds to win NFL MVP award, total season wins by team and much more.

Join the Price per Head industry right now and learn from the best, Payperhead247.com to make the most out of the new NFL season, since now! Give us a call today and let’s get started!

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