IN THE WAKE OF THE WEEK: The Raiders’ wild night; Giants make moves
December 22, 2017
CRAZY SUNDAY NIGHT: In a game defined by oddities, the Oakland Raiders failed 20-17 against the Dallas Cowboys. A fourth down measurement goes Dallas' way by a piece of paper. Derek Carr's fumble while reaching for a touchdown in the final seconds. Another Marshawn Lynch meltdown. The real culprit is a mediocre Oakland offense that merely nets 220 yards of total offense. It is curtains for the Raiders while Dallas lives to play another week.
GOULD/GAROPPOLO RULE: The Tennessee Titans come to Santa Clara badly in need of a win at 8-5. However, the new-look San Francisco 49ers spoil the party. Robbie Gould goes 6-for-6 in field goals including the buzzer-beater that wins the game. He has made 20 straight attempts. Then there is Jimmy Garoppolo. He passes for 381 yards including the winning drive with 1:07 to play. A three-game winning streak with this 25-23 win. Are the 49ers back? What a difference a quarterback makes!
NFL IN DECLINE: With the Carolina Panthers for sale, Mark Cuban says no. He calls the league "in decline." However, count Sean "Diddy" Combs in! The hip-hop performer wants to not only purchase the team, but incorporate Colin Kaepernick into the mix! Oh, man, the NFL's turmoil only seems to mount.
WHERE ARE GIANTS GOING?: There is a lot of mystery swirling around the San Francisco Giants. Pitcher Matt Moore is sent to the Texas Rangers. Hunter Pence is rumored to be on the trading block. Giancarlo Stanton says no to a San Francisco trade offer. Christian Arroyo and Denard Span sent to the Rays in exchange for Evan Longoria and his 20 home runs. Will 2018 be a better product?
GOLDEN STATE'S DILEMA: Yes, the Golden State Warriors hit 10 wins-in-a-row on Wednesday night with a 97-84 win over the listless Memphis Grizzlies. However, is there rain on the horizon? It could be stormy weather as the Dubs trudge forward without Steph Curry, Draymond Green, Andre Igoudala, Shaun Livingston and Zaza Pachulia. Relying heavily on Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson. The week ahead could be challenging…especially Christmas Day vs. the Cavaliers.
KINGS IMPROVED: The Sacramento Kings sit at 11-20 going into tonight's game vs. San Antonio at Golden 1. Some improvement in the midst of a big youth movement. However, amidst all of this, and after a 2-1 week with wins in Philadelphia and Brooklyn, Zach Randolph is leading the way. No playoff relevance for this season, but lots of playing time for developing youngsters.
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MEXICO MAYBE/EUROPE OUT: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver shuts down consideration of expansion into Europe. The logistics are just too overwhelming. However, Mexico City is still a strong prospect. Several regular season games have been played there and the result is positive. Seattle may be the first choice when the time is right. However, Mexico City is deemed desirable. Kings in Mexico City for a tilt? Let's go.
VIVA VEGAS: The Vegas Golden Nights are an NHL expansion team from which most expected little. However, they continue to win, especially at home. Incredible over-performance. In the last week they beat the Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins and top-rated Tampa Bay Lightning. They have their sights set at the top spot in the West! Vegas has a power surge! The big question is, "Can it last?"
C'EST LA VIE: Hockey the way it was meant to be played. The Montreal Canadiens and the Ottawa Senators tangle outdoors in Canada's nation's capital last Saturday The game is played in single digit temperatures, but it is a full stadium of rabid hockey enthusiasts celebrating the NHL's 100th season. Some days may be cold here in Nevada County, but nothing begins to compare to this frigid scene. Ottawa wins 3-0.
Jim Adams is a regular contributor to The Union. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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