February 2013

Basketball

Daryl Morey and the Overnight Houston Sensation

Somewhat surprisingly, it’s a good time to be a Houston Rockets fan in 2013. I say surprisingly because 2013 was scheduled to be a rebuilding year filled with lots of losing for a young Rockets team. Of course, the Rockets have become somewhat accustomed to losing over the last four lottery-bound seasons, but the team was set to hit a new low in 2013. This was by design on the part of Rockets general manager, Daryl Morey. How quickly things can change.

Football

Jadeveon Clowney: Ready as he’ll ever be

In the fourth quarter of the 2013 Outback Bowl, Michigan running back Vincent Smith ran into the wall that goes by the name of Jadeveon Clowney. The South Carolina defensive end hit Smith for a loss of eight yards, and the impact was probably equally awesome, scary and hurtful. It was the hit of the season in the NCAA, and as I watched the replays of the collision with the helpless Smith I had only one thought in mind. Get Clowney in the NFL.

Reviews

Any Given Monday (2013)

It’s hard to think of a sports medicine figure as well-known as Dr. James Andrews. In addition to handling some of the trickiest operations on big-name sports stars from Adrian Peterson to Brett Favre to Albert Pujols, Andrews is the official team doctor for the Washington Redskins, the Tampa Bay Rays and both Auburn University and the University of Alabama, possibly the only figure who could survive being associated with both of those fierce rivals at once. Andrew Bucholtz takes a good look at his new book.

Basketball

The NBA All-Star Weekend Debrief

Has the NBA All-Star Weekend lost its appeal? P.J. Carr takes a thorough look at where it’s been, where it is, and where the festivities might be headed. As well, where does the February showdown stack up to mid-season classics from the other major professional sports? It might not be long before even the All-Star Game itself starts looking more and more like the NFL’s Pro Bowl.

Hockey

Anaheim Ducks: The Deadline Dilemma

The Anaheim Ducks sit two points from the top of the NHL, yet are in an unenviable position. Both Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, the team’s two towers of power, are unrestricted free agents on July 1st and the longer they go unsigned the more GM Bob Murray risks losing them both for nothing. What would you do in Anaheim?

Other Sports

NCAA: Through Scandal and Incompetence

An all-powerful body polices college sports. That body makes up and enforces rules at it’s own convenience. That body often refuses to accept that changing times require changing bylaws. That body holds itself to a completely different, lower standard than the young adults it profits from. Increasingly, that body operates as though it was devoid of a head, with limbs operating according to their own devices without central oversight. It’s time someone put that body out to pasture.

Basketball

The One-and-Done Rule Revisited

When Nerlens Noel tore his ACL last Tuesday, it set off one of the most talked about, controversial and least impactful rules in sports: the age limit for the NBA Draft, usually called the one-and-done rule. It happens any time a high-profile college player gets injured: are they a casualty of the rule? Mark Milner takes a look back at high school players who made the jump the pros with a special focus on the good, the bad and the Ellis Richardson.

Baseball

Spring Training: The Escape from Winter

It’s that time of year again, when watching players in the Florida (or Arizona) sun stretch, sprint and work on their skills creates a sense of optimism for anybody regardless of wherever they might call home. Everyone’s team, everyone’s pride and joy, looks good and no one is worried about where they will ultimately finish in the standings. It’s the perfect escape from winter.