IN THE WAKE OF THE WEEK: Warriors collect more hardware; Raiders pay big for Carr
WARRIORS TAKE HOME THE HARDWARE: Yes, awards aplenty for the Golden State Warriors. Why not? They were simply the best. Draymond Green is Defensive Player of the Year. One of two awards for him. Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Bob Myers also are winners. Thompson for Top Performance of the Year, Meyers for Executive of the Year, and Curry, Green and Durant for Best Assist. Basketball is a team game, and the Warriors are the definition. The goal now shifts to keeping them all together for another run. Great entertainment for all of us. It was an extraordinary year. The NBA agrees.
RAIDERS PLACE THEIR FUTURE ON CARR: Yes, it was a $125 million contract over 5 years. For now, the Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders believe Carr is the man to return them to the playoffs and past glory. He is the knighted candidate for their return to excellence. It looks like they are better in the backfield. However, several of their wins in 2016 could have gone either way. In any case, it will be an entertaining season as the Raiders begin to sing their swan song in Oakland.
PROGRESS FOR 49ERS?: Have the San Francisco 49ers found the solution in Kyle Shanahan? He surely has the right bloodlines. It will surely take some time with this thin roster. Many feel he is the right candidate, after four coaches in 4 years, to turn it around. The key will be what improvements they make via free agents. Still unsettled at quarterback, can the faithful expect a better result in 2017? They should even in the face of this dysfunctional franchise.
DODGERS SURGING: Early in the week, the Los Angeles Dodgers sit with a 10-game winning streak and a record of 51-26. Part of the reason is Cody Bellinger, the Aaron Judge of the National League. They are 41-13 when he starts. Justin Turner with a .393 batting average. Alex Wood at 8-0 with a 1.86 ERA. Kenley Jansen with a 52-to-1 strikeout to walk ratio. Then there is Clayton Kershaw. So many incredible statistics this campaign. Can they shake the voodoo that has prevented them from going deep into the playoffs? This may be the year.
GIANTS ARE SIMPLY A MESS: Was there 1-12 run a low point? Will they end with the most losses in baseball? How did the World Series aspirations dissipate so miserably? Mark Melancon has been ineffective and disruptive. The loss of Angel Pagan has been a negative. Matt Moore’s ERA is among the very worst in the league. The hitting has been anemic at times. So many lost games in the late or extra innings. On top of that, the hated Dodgers are dominating. The quest for respectability, let alone the playoffs, may be suspect.
GOOD LUCK/BAD LUCK: Jae-Gyun Hwang joins the Giants for Wednesday’s contest in his MLB debut. His first hit is a game-winning home run. Good luck for the South Korean. Ryder Jones has played five games for the G-Men and goes 0-for-17. Also in Wednesday’s tilt, he is struck in the right foot while swinging at a third strike. Talk about the pinnacle of frustration.
GATORS WIN!: The Florida Gators sweep the LSU Tigers to win the College World Series. They take the second game 6-1 behind timely hitting and good pitching. It is the first CWS win after several tries.
A’S MATT CHAPMAN DEALS WITH INFECTION: In his first go-round, Chapman has been impressive for Oakland. Yes, only 14 at-bats with three hits. However, he shows great promise. His infection of his left knee has been treated with antibiotics during his hospital visit. However, the hopes that he will be back soon buoys the A’s hopes for a strong second half of the season.
BARNES NEEDS TO RETIRE: Matt Barnes, currently with the Golden State Warriors, needs to get out of the game. He is given a sentence of 10 days of Community Service stemming from his ridiculous December fight at a night club in NYC while a member of the Sacramento Kings. He is brought in to straighten out the conduct of Demarcus Cousins and he succeeds in making it worse. Both are long gone from the Kings, but Barnes’ conduct was disgraceful. Time to move on and find another vocation.
NOT AGAIN: Perhaps Matt Barnes needs to join the Ball family contingent. It is bad enough the Balls go on the WWE “Raw” show and make fools of themselves. LaMelo Ball uses a racial slur during his segment. So bad that the WWE has to issue a statement disavowing their involvement. LaVar Ball and his kids in yet another embarrassing tirade. Lonzo Ball is the second overall pick, going to the Lakers. Good luck to Luke Walton and company in attempting to make this anything but a circus.
FINAL THOUGHT: Phil Jackson’s dismissal as General Manager of the Knicks is the first good move made by the team in several seasons.
Jim Adams is a regular contributor to The Union. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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The Nevada Union Junior Miners Football and Cheer teams traveled on Saturday to Casa Roble High School in Orangevale to play the Casa Roble Junior Rams in Sacramento Youth Football League action.