IN THE WAKE OF THE WEEK: Tough break for Rossi; NFL revamps replay rules
LUCK DESERTS ROSSI AGAIN: It is a scenario he faced last year. Alexander Rossi is racing brilliantly at the Circuit of Americas IndyCar race in Austin, Texas. He is poised to take the lead. He is his usual skillful self. However, a yellow flag on lap 44 (of 60) ruins it all. He must execute a pit stop. As he emerges, he has slipped to 14th place. He rises back to ninth, but bad luck again dooms Rossi. It is on to the Grand Prix of Alabama on April 7 where Rossi hopes for an improved fate.
NFL REPLAY EVOLVES: Is it a whole new game? After last year’s fiasco in the New Orleans-LA Rams game, pass interference becomes a reviewable play. It is now subject to a coach’s challenge and can be looked at automatically in the last 2 minutes of the half and game. Are they opening Pandora’s Box? Is holding next? The CFL already has this in place with 42 challenges last year. Although this may be good for the game, it certainly makes things more complex.
WARRIORS GET MUCH NEEDED BREAK: They played five games in seven nights. It was an up-and-down stretch. The low point was a blowout at the hands of the Dallas Mavericks in which they played poorly. However, as Indiana is beating Denver, Golden State leads 97-77 against the Detroit Pistons going into the fourth quarter after a 14-4 run. Down the stretch, they give points away and end up winning 121-114. Andrew Bogut and Kevon Looney combine for 19 points. They “rest” Andre Iguodala and DeMarcus Cousins on the night. Now the heavy lifting really begins as the regular season reaches its conclusion.
GOLDEN STATE/KERR MILESTONES: In the first 68 seasons of the Warriors franchise, they only won 50 games five times. However, they match the mark of five 50-win seasons in the last five campaigns. In the recent era, they’ve won three NBA Championships. However, the question truly emerges as to what they will do in 2019 after a tumultuous overall performance.
POOR ROAD SHOOTING PLAGUES KINGS: It is one they should have won. On Sunday evening, the Sacramento Kings play the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center. It is surely a winnable game. However, after 15 minutes, the Kings are shooting a mere 23-percent. Sacramento takes a 49-48 lead into halftime. However, the Lakers come out with a 13-0 run and lead after three quarters, 87-77. The Kings cut it to two with 4:50 left, but then let the Lakers seize control with a 111-106 win. Sacramento also loses this one at the foul line with a dismal performance.
SAN JOSE MISERY: At totally the wrong time, the San Jose Sharks lose their seventh straight game. With five games to go in the season, the Sharks are miserably backing into the playoffs. The team has given up a goal in the first 5 minutes an alarming 64 times. Broadcaster Brett Hedican proclaims, “Too many passengers. Not enough game-makers.” They have been outscored 31-18 during the dreadful stretch. It is Vegas and Calgary this weekend. If they fail, the postseason may be a dreary end to a promising campaign.
DROUGHT: The San Francisco Giants seem to be swooning and it is not even June. They had a below .500 preseason. They were swept by the A’s in the Bay Bridge Series. They only score in two of 24 innings. They open in San Diego and waste a good start by Madison Bumgarner. Again, no scoring as they endure 2-0 defeat. Where is the offense? For the time being, it is absent.
LARRY BAER: Giants executive is suspended without pay until July 2 for an altercation with his wife that went viral. MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, Jr. states, “Mr. Baer should be held to a higher standard because, as a leader, he is expected to be a role model.” The San Francisco Giants add, “The commissioner has imposed what we believe to be appropriate disciplinary measures.” Baer concludes, “I made a serious mistake that I sincerely regret and I am truly sorry for my actions.” Baer needs to get help for his issues.
ROBERT KRAFT: The Patriots owner gets entangled in a prostitution ring after going to a Florida massage parlor and soliciting sex. Local authorities offer a plea deal. Kraft comes out and apologizes. Now it is in the hands of local law and the NFL. If the league handles this right, there will be serious consequences for Kraft.
Jim Adams is a regular contributor to The Union. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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