EL BARRIO, EL FALLS – Happy Monday! No time for lots of person chatter today. This was another late night piece and I have no energy to do my usual small talk before the piece. I will say that having little kids is exhausting, but their joy at getting Christmas decorations up, inside and outside the house was worthwhile. Anyway, let’s get to the sports and today’s headliners: NY Giants, Minnesota Vikings & Houston Rockets.
I’m taking a break from my J-E-T-S because well they got hammered by Seattle. There’s nothing really to talk about outside of it being ugly. What was also ugly was how easily Arizona handled the Giants. Danny Fumbles was back at it again, coughing it up on the game’s first drive. From then on Big Blue had no answers for the Cards. After a four-game winning streak, people were thinking there was hope and that Joe Judge had the guys believing in the system, Wins and wins and the playoffs were on the radar but then reality set back in. The thing about the loss was it was a complete defeat. The offense couldn’t muster anything, the defense had no answer for Arizona’s weapons and the special teams underwhelmed. It was like the early-season Giants. This left fans wondering if they had turned the corner. They did. They turned 4 corners. Sure, there is a chance that this might be a blip but I’m betting that the winning streak was a fluke and last week was just pure luck more than any actual ability. Meanwhile, Washington did the improbable again, this time beating San Fran in Frisco, so it couldn’t have been worse for Jints fans.
Boy, I’m glad I am not Angry Ward right now. I’m pretty sure he probably threw something watching the Vikings vs the Buccaneers game, as Vikings kicker Dan Bailey missed four kicks. He missed conversions and field goals and left 10 points on the board. Surprise, surprise… they lost. Those those 10 points would have come in handy. Now, A-Ward would be heartbroken but he’s been a Vikings fan long enough to know “it’s the hope that kills you” and they leave you just enough belief that they might do something… before they go ahead and sh1t the bed. Minny now looks to be out of the running for the 7th and final Wild Card spot with three games to go. They just might still pull it off but it would be more like them to come close to qualifying and then lose it on the final play of the final regular season game. To make matters worse, the head coach gave that kicker the kiss of death, stating how much the team supports him and we’re not going to fire people for a bad play here or there. That just means they give him the ax by Wednesday. If they don’t then he must be related to Adam Gase.
The Houston Rockets are having a rough off-season. The new GM who picked a new head coach. Then they make a controversial trade, sending Russell Westbrook and some picks to Washington for John Wall. Westbrook was acquired last season under the previous regime in an attempt to keep pace. Westbrook wanted to leave OKC after Paul George left. Being James Harden’s long-standing buddy, the Rockets made the move in the hopes of sparking a title run. It didn’t work out and the Rockets were eliminated by the Lakers. The new GM and new coach wanted to get a player that fit the coach’s style. Thus they made the deal. Unfortunately, Harden seems unhappy. He has been partying with rappers and friends rather than getting tested and being cleared to practice with his new teammates. He has taken flack from former NBA Steven Jackson for chasing rappers and helping out a young black coach. Yes Jackson went there and he may have a point. Harden always seemed like a driven player but not a leader. It is a weird combo but it is true. Houston will need some leaders to emerge if they hope to dethrone the LA Lakers. In the meantime, Houston, We’ve Got A Problem.
Thanks for reading and come back tomorrow for Ben Whitney, who is burning all the Giants gear he brought up from the basement last week.