Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Affluenza



Definition

"a painful, contagious, socially transmitted condition of overload, debtanxiety, and waste resulting from the dogged pursuit of more."[3]The term "affluenza" has also been used to refer to an inability to understand the consequences of one's actions because of financial privilege, notably in the case of Ethan Couch.[4]


Now just Wait a damn minute; if wealthy individuals can contract a disease that impairs understanding the consequences of their actions because of financial privilege, is not the equivalent of such a condition the inability of impoverished individuals to understand the consequences of their actions because of financial poverty?

In the case of Ethan Couch, who was sentenced to ten years probation on December 2013 by Texas presiding judge Jean Hudson Boyd, wealth is governed by a different set of laws and subject to leniency from the courts and those magistrates trusted to interpret the law.

One must question not only who's interpreting the laws of the land these days, but also who's getting paid to twist medical semantics to allow a murderer, who caused the death of four innocent persons, to be on the loose and unaccounted for.

Texas judge Jean Hudson Boyd, now retired, and Psychologist G. Dick Miller are the who's who of this Affluenza farce.  Only in Texas; no strike that. Only in America where money can buy you any Word you want to lessen the blow of legal accountability and punishment.

God Bless Mexico, who along with U.S. Marshals, FBI and other agencies, hunted down Couch, a fugitive from justice after violating probation, and detained him in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Maybe now Mexico can assist in doing what the U.S. justice system failed to do the first time; not allow financial privilege to influence judgement and punishment of a criminal.

I'm sure Mexico and Canada both think all U.S. citizens suffer from Affluenza; "a painful, contagious, socially transmitted condition of overload, debtanxiety, and waste resulting from the dogged pursuit of more." Sure sounds like the symptoms of an STD doesn't it!

Why mention this tidbit of news on a sports blog you might ask.  Because I truly believe the American legal system, in cahoots with a deceptively bogus medical diagnosis, have wronged the families of four victims of Ethan Couch's recklessness.  Prayers for all; the victims, all families affected, Couch and his family, the American justice system, medical psychology, all victims of DUI offenders.

Get MADD - Don't let others drive drunk


Ethan Couch’s victims, from left: Brian Jennings, Breanna Mitchell, Hollie Boyles, Shelby Boyles.

Crash

On Saturday, June 15, 2013, according to authorities and trial testimony, Couch was witnessed on surveillance video stealing two cases of beer from a Walmart store, driving with seven passengers in his father's Ford F-350 pickup truck, and speeding (70 miles per hour (110 km/h) in a designated 40 miles per hour (64 km/h) zone). Three hours after the incident, he had a blood alcohol content of 0.24, three times the legal limit for adult drivers in Texas,[7] and tested positive for Valium.[4]

Monday, December 28, 2015

Gray Ghost & Greed



A fan gives her opinion on the Oakland Coliseum and it's fun, comfortably inviting venue. After reading her "letter to the editor" I had to agree that the Coliseum needs little renovation if any to accommodate the needs of today's fans.

Oakland A's and Raiders fans come to watch their teams simply because they love the sport and are loyal to their teams. If Raiders games were played at the nearest high school football field fans would line up three days before just to get good general admission seating.  

Oakland Coliseum visitors need only edible meat on a bun and a stout grog to wash it all down.  Marketing of any other foods or products are luxuries the real fans can do without.

Granted, the new high definition screens are most welcome by fans, but it didn't take a new stadium budget to get those in. Coliseum fans enjoy some of the best ticket pricing in professional sports and as blue collar fans wouldn't trade that for all the wine and cheese in Santa Clara's Levi's Stadium.

So it begs the question, who's needs are really being fulfilled if and/or when a new stadium is built?  Anne Sullivan, of Santa Rosa writes a revealing letter that sounds closer to the truth than anything I've heard coming from owners or the leagues (NFL/MLB).



Embrace Oakland’s ‘gray ghost’
As a lifelong Oakland A’s fan, and former Oakland Raiders fan, I have to strongly object to the depiction of their home stadium as a 50-year-old, crumbling Coliseum (“A great, gray ghost of sports memories,” Dec. 24).
I find the Coliseum to be fun, comfortable and inviting.
Although I have had to navigate water on the bathroom floors on occasion, I have never once worried about a piece of concrete crashing down upon my head.
I very much enjoy tailgating in the spacious parking lot before A’s games and also enjoy the affordable ticket prices and fast-food concessions. (I don’t miss quiche and sushi at baseball games!)
The notion that the Coliseum is beyond repair is a billionaire owner’s perspective. There was nothing wrong with the Coliseum before Mount Davis was erected! It was a spacious stadium with great sight lines (which are still better than the new Giants stadium) and views of the East Bay Hills. I have become accustomed to the changes made to accommodate the Raiders’ return.
Why is it that this great, gray ghost is not good enough for the A’s and Raiders, if it is good enough for their fans?
Why is it that Memorial Stadium in Berkeley, which opened in 1923, is salvageable, safe and a great experience for 63,000 fans, and the Coliseum, which opened in 1966, is not?
One need look no further than Santa Clara for the answer: a horrible new edifice which is a cash cow at the public’s expense for billionaire owners!
I am appalled at the greed and disingenuousness of the major league sports. Long live the Great Gray Ghost: the last of the people’s sports venues!

Anne Sullivan, Santa Rosa

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Santa Delivers Raiders OT Victory



It weren't pretty and damn near ended in a loss, but Christmas Eve in Oaktown was silver, black and beautiful as the Raiders beat the San Diego Chargers in overtime 23-20.

More of the same style of play by the Raiders where the offense struggles, punter Marquette King pins the opponent deep and the defense makes plays that changes game momentum.  This time it was a forced fumble by LB Malcolm Smith that was picked out of the air by DE Benson Mayowa and returned to the 3 yd line for a first and goal Raiders. 

San Diego was leading 17-12 and driving with 5:00 minutes left in regulation. The play caused an eruption out of the Raider Nation that had to be felt in the North Pole. It was the gift that would lead to a 20-17 Raiders lead and a game sealing Sebastian Janikowski field goal in overtime.

MayOWA might not realize it, but his recovery and rumble jolted life into the team and the fans like nothing else could have.  The Raiders looked dead in the water. Nothing was working.  Meanwhile, Chargers QB Philip Rivers was looking Peyton Manningesque throughout most of the night. I'm sure he thought they had the win tucked away in the old christmas bag and was simply running time off the clock.  I thought I once saw a big, fluorescent green, grinch-smile beaming through his face mask.
Then a six foot three inch savior wearing a Black jersey with the silver numerals 95 went slicing through both Chargers and Raiders with the pigskin tucked securely under his arm.  The recovery and sprint began so fast that it took fans and players alike time to react to MayOWa in action.  

By the time players fully realized, MayOWa was full steam ahead, pushing anyone between himself and the goal line out of the way, including some of his own teammates. He was not gonna be denied. 41 yards later MayOWa lay sprawled out at about the three yard line, catching his breath and being hailed a hero.

Up to that point it had been an ugly, sloppy game that favored the Chargers. After that play, the Raiders just looked as if the full moon had shifted ever so slightly to a position in the sky that let it shine exclusively down on the Raiders sideline.  When the Raiders won the overtime coin flip you knew the football God's had answered Raider Nation's prayers and would deliver a win for Charles Woodson's final game at the coliseum.  What a game, what a win.

I remember having my little heart broken by my cousin when told there was no Santa Claus.  Well cousin, after seeing my Raiders come from behind and deliver an incredible effort to win the nationally televised Thursday night game, I not only believe in the Jolly, bearded man who bears gifts, I saw him make a delivery to my home team.  Oh yeah, and he was dressed in Silver and Black.



Chargers 20
Raiders 23

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Raiders Play Xmas Eve Game (Humbug)

Los Angeles Chargers vs Los Angeles Raiders (pick'em)
You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch.  

With the Raiders hosting a Thursday night, nationally televised Christmas Eve game, Holiday spirits in Oakland are anything but cheerful. 

Why?

Because this past Sunday the Green Bay Packers dashed any hope of Santa Claus delivering a Raiders ticket to the postseason.  The Packers left the Oakland Coliseum with a 30-20 victory, officially eliminating the Raiders from the postseason hunt. We knew the playoffs were a long shot, but at least let us dream the dreams that Santa Claus and Christmas are supposed to bring. No, Virginia, there is no Santa Claus.


This coming Xmas Eve game at home against the dreadful San Diego Chargers means absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of the playoffs.  No need looking for Santa Claus to deliver any gifts for this game. Both teams have played their way out of the playoff picture. Ironically, both teams are vying for playing future games in the Los Angeles area.

The Raiders are an improved football team. They show future promise and have lived up to all that potential talk. But how sweet would it have been if this game, possibly their last in Oakland, had meaning and purpose. Sports can sometimes be so cruel to fans.  What's the point of a Raiders Christmas Eve game without the chance of keeping playoff and super bowl hopes alive.

You're A Mean One Mr. Grinch!

It's as if the football Gods set the Raiders up to be teased, ridiculed and pitied on the one night of the year that's supposed to be spiritually joyous and full of hope. Instead of receiving an NFL Xmas gift, Raiders fans will be saying goodbye to all-pro cornerback Charles Woodson, who announced his plan to retire at the end of this season. Though we appreciate the chance to honor Cwood, his leaving is more of a loss to our team than any promising gift.

Yes, You're A Mean One Mr. Grinch!

The Raiders will play their last home game of the season tomorrow night, Xmas Eve.  Raider Nation will be there to say goodbye to a season that gave us so much, but in the end delivered the same old gut wrenching feeling of not being good enough. We'll return next season, that is, if our team returns to Oaktown.  The potential team move to L.A. is also one of those Grinch stealing xmas downers Raiders fans are facing this Holiday season.

A win on Xmas Eve puts the Raiders record at 7-8 with one road game left in Kansas City.  Don't be surprised if the Grinch doesn't try to sabotage the Raiders chances of ending the season with an 8-8 record. After all, the Grinch is a vile, monstrous, red clad Chiefs fan.

You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch.
You really are a heel.
You're as cuddly as a cactus,
You're as charming as an eel,
Mr. Grinch!
You're a bad banana with a greasy black peel.

You're a monster, Mr. Grinch.
Your heart's an empty hole.
Your brain is full of spiders,
You've got garlic in your soul,
Mr. Grinch!
I wouldn't touch you with a 
Thirty-nine and a half foot pole.

You're a vile one, Mr. Grinch.
You have termites in your smile.
You have all the tender sweetness of a seasick crocodile,
Mr. Grinch!
Given the choice between the two of you
I'd take the seasick crocodile.

You're a foul one, Mr. Grinch.
You're a nasty, wasty skunk.
Your heart is full of unwashed socks,
Your soul is full of gunk,
Mr. Grinch!
The three-words that best describe you
Are as follows, and I quote,
"Stink, stank, stunk!"


Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Pete Rose Is No Shoeless Joe



You've got to know when to hold'em
Know when to fold'em
Know when to walk away
And know when to run
Lyrics from song "The Gambler" by Kenny Rogers


Rose had every opportunity to be forgiven in the past 26 years, every opportunity to get back into the sport. But Rose was out of baseball because he bet on baseball, and lied about it for years afterward, and he continues to bet on baseball, as he acknowledged to the commissioner -- only after first saying he doesn't bet on baseball. Really, he gave no choice to Manfred, who has made what likely will be the final decision from Major League Baseball on Rose in his lifetime.  

Why major league baseball can continue to ban former player Pete Rose from entering their hall of fame? Integrity!  Integrity!  Integrity!

Pete Rose, after all these years, still wants to be reinstated and forgiven for his "crime" of betting on baseball while a player and manager of the Cincinnati Reds.  As with most addicts, until they've thrown the monkey off their back, denial and avoidance of confronting their addiction are excuses used to enable their continued engagement in the activity.  

If Pete Rose wants so bad to be reinstated, how is it that he continues to engage in the activity that caused him to be banned in the first place?  Time has not been kind to Mr. Rose.  Over time, most people grow wiser and are humbled by life through their experiences. 

Mr. Rose does not appear to be like most people; he continues to selfishly think of himself first and foremost, with little room for repentance. He wants others to change the way they view him when he hasn't changed the way he views his criminal actions nor others and their rules. He feels entitled to a reward after throwing aside the rules that such an award is based on.

The gambling sickness calls for it's addicts to be bold, unyielding and uncompromising in their commitment to betting. There is no room for humbleness or compassion when gambling. Sounds like the same principles needed to compete in sports at a high level, as long as one follows the rules. 

Unfortunately Mr. Rose, to his detriment and that of baseball fans, broke the rules of baseball. He lied about it for years and yet continues his plea for MLB reinstatement with no effort on his part to disengage from gambling and seek help for his addiction. That's why gambling addiction is a sickness; the victim is the last to admit to it and take responsibility toward addressing the problems it causes in one's life.

A rehabilitated Pete could possibly do wonders for many an addicted gambler, especially those professional athletes who continue to bet on sports. And we know they're out there. How MLB allows Pete to work as a sports analyst when the man still admits to gambling is beyond me. The sick leading the sick I suppose. Or more like money leading the sick, a case and point when it comes to gambling.

At some point Mr. Rose will need to take a good, long look in the mirror and admit that his gambling ways has cost him more than just major league baseball hall of fame recognition; it's cost him his integrity and character as a man.

I'd probably be more in Pete's corner if he just accepted who he has chosen to be and not try to force MLB into a position of honoring him.  Be a man Pete and just walk away from baseball with your arrogance and selfishness. You'll be remembered as a great major league baseball player. The honor of being called a Hall of Fame baseball player is reserved nowadays for those who gave without trying to selfishly take away from the integrity of the game. 

Wanna see what a guy who deserves reinstatement and voted into the MLB Hall of Fame looks like?

Look no further than Shoeless Joe Jackson. Joe, from what I'm lead to believe, admitted to taking the money and painfully accepted the consequences of breaking the rules of major league baseball. Even if Joe didn't take the money and a shady lawyer coerced him into making a self incriminating statement, he lived by his word. His word was "bond."

Sorry Pete, you're no Shoeless Joe

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Raiders & Broncos - It Never Get's Old

Khalil Mack Day, All Day In Denver


The Oakland Raiders went into Denver and rode their defense to a comeback win over the Broncos.  #52 Khalil Mack was the defensive star that led the Raiders with five sacks, one of which caused a safety (huge play).  As coach Del Rio stated in the post-game, the pass coverage gets credit for forcing Broncos quarterback Brock Osweiler to hold the ball longer, giving the pass rush time to get to the quarterback. 

I think once Del Rio sees game tape he'll agree that Mack's relentless attack made the pass coverage job easier. Either way, the Raiders defense did a fantastic job of keeping the Broncos out of the endzone all day and rattling the home team offense. They also caused game changing fumbles. 

Bonus: There was a TJ Carrie sighting when on a Broncos third down pass late in the game he lit up Broncos receiver Emmanuel Sanders resulting in a no catch out of bounds ruling.  Carrie's big sideline hit kept Sanders feet from landing in bounds nullifying what would have been a first down catch.

Sure, the Broncos dominated the first half.  Sure we're left still wondering what has happened to the once top ranked Raiders offense starring WR Amari Cooper. Coop was targeted eight times and had zero catches. Gotta give QB Derek Carr and the passing game some credit for scoring two touchdowns in the second half after being down 12-0 at halftime. An impressive task when your running game is non-existent.  


#10 Seth Roberts Touchdown 

Precise route running resulted in beautiful touchdown catches by Mychal Rivera and Seth Roberts, giving us glimpses of the the Raiders early season offensive explosiveness; different receivers, same results. They'll need to find ways to get Coop and Crabtree touches as well as running backs out of the backfield.  The Latavius Murray up the middle has proven it's mostly good for running time off the play clock. The rushing stats are........abysmal

Denver did come into the game leading the league in overall defense, maybe that was the reason for a mostly conservative game plan. Also, Derek Carr coming off last week's ugly three interception loss might've dictated the play calling.  Today Carr was 12 for 29 for 135 yards and 2 touchdowns. No turnovers by interception or fumble.

Also deserving credit is punter Marquette King for placing five of his ten punts inside the 20 yard line. One of King's punts was mishandled by the Broncos return man resulting in a fumble recovery by the Raiders.

It was a frustrating game to watch as a Raiders fan, but the ugly win on the road in Denver was the most rewarding victory for the silver & black in years; definitely the best win for new coach Jack Del Rio and his staff. Raiders hadn't won in Denver since 2011. Imagine how the now 10-3 Broncos fans must feel after losing to the silver & black.

Congratulations Raiders on a huge step taken toward being a great team once again.  

Final Score
Raiders 15
Broncos 12

Mile High Maniac's Take On The Game

Raider Central Mikey Raider Postgame (Game Over)

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Oklahoma Cop Guilty Of Rape(s)

Oklahoma City Police Officer Daniel Holtzclaw

(sexual predator/serial rapist)

A white police officer has been found guilty by an all white jury on 5 counts of rape and 13 counts of sexual assault. All 13 of his victims are black women ranging in age from 17-57 at the time the cop abused them. 

Their courage to end their silence and come forward to testify against police officer Daniel Holtzclaw is a victory for all women and all victims of violent assaults. No man is above the truth.  He's just a man. One voice of truth can ignite a firestorm to burn down violence and deceit.  Abuse in any form by anyone for any reason is wrong. And criminal laws are written to judge and punish such wrongs and abuse.

The name Daniel Holtzclaw should be highlighted by all news organizations today. Police nationally should show nothing but anger and disgrace toward their fellow officer for using his position of civic trust to victimize civilians he swore to protect. He has smeared the badge and honor of his police department.

At 6'2, 220 pounds, a former college football linebacker, Officer Holtzclaw is guilty of more than just being a predator who profiled black women as prey for his sexual assaults; he is guilty of breaking a law enforcement oath to protect and serve the community; the Entire community, not just one sector. 

If Officer Holtzclaw did harbor some warped, supremacist idea that only a certain sector of the community was deserving of his protection and services, he had no right to victimize and abuse any other sector of the community. He's a sick man armed with weapons, a badge and the privilege of race. Praise the jury for hearing the evidence and not getting blinded by the uniform or race of the accused. This is what Justice should look like.

Take race out of the equation and you have this international headline:
THIRTEEN KNOWN WOMEN SEXUALLY ASSAULTED BY THE SAME POLICE OFFICER IN AN AMERICAN CITY


Multiple Women assaulted and victimized at different times by one police officer because he believed he was above the law and could get away with it. One bad apple picked out of the bunch and exposed as a perpetrator. 

Doesn't mean their aren't more bad apples in the barrel, not by a long shot. A year long Associated Press investigation illuminated the problem of rape and sexual misconduct committed by law officers in the United States, uncovering about 1,000 officers who lost their licenses from 2009-2014 for such incidents.  

But we should be very careful not to indict all police officers on the reprehensible record of this guilty one and/or the others like him. A conservative count of all sworn law enforcement officers in the U.S. in 2014 was 900,000.  

Just as Mr. Trump's fear of all muslims being potential terrorists is a dangerous phobia to spread, so to the accusation of all police being rapists, all blacks being criminals, all jews being money hungry, all italians being mobsters, all irish being drunks, all anybodies being anything. It's both inaccurate and dangerous to generalize/profile any group of peoples based solely on race, religion, color or duty.

Hopefully the prosecution and conviction of Officer Daniel Holtzclaw sheds light on one reason minority communities are reluctant to partner with police departments to help rid their neighborhoods of vice and crime; that reason being trust. More times than not, it's the minority neighborhoods who can spot a 'bad apple' best. It's time police and other civic leaders listen to them and others who've been silenced by threats and retaliations.  


It's these same bullying tactics used by police officer Daniel Holtclaw, soon to be inmate ######, that have turned many citizens, both law-abiding and non-law-abiding, against trusting police officers in these United States. Unfortunately, one bad apple can rotten the reputation of the whole bunch.




One woman alleged that she was handcuffed to a hospital bed, high on PCP, when Holtzclaw forced her to perform oral sex on him. Another woman testified that Holtzclaw ran her name and found out she had city warrants, and then drove her to an abandoned school and raped her.
Another victim explained to the court that she didn’t tell anyone about Holtzclaw's alleged abuse because she’d "never been on the right side of the law." The last woman to testify, who was only 17 at the time of her alleged rape, summarized the group sentiment with one salient and heartbreaking question: "What kind of police do you call on the police?"



The most horricic cop rap case you've never heard of - 12/10/2015

How the rapist cop was caught - 9/05/2015

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Crabtree Gets 4-Year Contract Extension

The Oakland Raiders have given wide receiver Michael Crabtree a four year contract extension. The extension is well deserved as Crabtree has been the go to receiver this season. He'd come over from the 49ers on a one year deal.

The signing puts to bed any talk of losing QB Derek Carr's top target.  The team can now focus on other needs that will bring them to the next level.  It's a great signing and it comes with five games still left to play in the 2015 regular season.

Yes Raider Nation, the man with the hands ain't going nowhere.  

Sunday, December 06, 2015

QB Derek Carr Has A Bad Day

'Cause you had a bad day
You're taking one down
You sing a sad song just to turn it around
You say you don't know
You tell me don't lie
You work at a smile, and you go for a ride
You had a bad day
The camera don't lie
You're coming back down, and you really don't mind
You had a bad day
You had a bad day

Oakland Raiders second year quarterback Derek Carr simply had a bad outing today.  The surging Kansas City Chiefs were in town and the Raiders had outplayed them into the third quarter.  

With the Raiders leading in the third quarter 20-14 and driving toward a score at the Chiefs 35 yard line, QB Derek Carr over threw a wide open Michael Crabtree for what would've been a huge gain if not a touchdown.  On the next play Carr tried to make up for it, held onto the ball too long and was hit as he threw.  The ball went directly to a Chiefs defender who ran it back 65 yards to the 2 yard line.  It was the beginning of the end for the home team.

The Chiefs would score to tie the game and Derek Carr would completely transform into the laughable Jamarcus Russell, a player the Raiders wished into the cornfield five years ago.

Granted the Raiders offensive play calling (OC Bill Musgrave) was skittish and questionable throughout most of the game.  But it was the poor decision making of Derek Carr that gave this game to the Chiefs. With three interceptions leading to 20 points, Carr was the goat of the day in a game the Raiders coulda, shoulda had. Derek, You had a bad day.

Growing Pangs!

Final Score
Chiefs 34
Raiders 20

Golden State Warriors beat Bklyn Nets, go to 22-0  

Friday, December 04, 2015

Harp & Cello Football



I know the setting is straight out of a Beatrix Potter book, but the music is excellent.  It's the old saying of not confusing the message with the messenger.  This video is about music and the human emotions it can stir up inside individuals. Not everyone spends Sundays in front of a television set watching sports. Seriously.

In the video above the dual sound of harp and cello is simply blissful. It's a back and forth sound that's harmonic and soothing to the soul; like a waterfall. You can close your eyes and place yourself anywhere on earth; a mountaintop, an ocean cruise, a battlefield, a birth. No matter where you go there it is, hidden in the sounds, revealed in the stillness. The you that is you is always watching and observing the waves of life.

I once used this Adagio in G minor by Albinoni to illustrate the emotional roller coaster of being a football fan. The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat ring true throughout this musical masterpiece. There's buildup, anticipation, eruption, conflict and the inevitable final conclusion to the event that is music to our ears. 

It's also true of Sunday football.  Win, lose or tie, you're completely invested in your team before, during and after it's Sunday showdown against an opponent.  You're likely to experience every emotion imaginable within the course of a football game. Sometimes, slowing down your game day excitement and actions can reveal the beauty of all that goes into a full day of Sunday football. 

It's enough to bring tears of joy or sorrow to a grown man's eyes.  

NFL Gameday; It's a sports fans masterpiece.


blog post inspired by reading the book "The Cellist of Sarajevo" by Steven Galloway

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Dell Curry Honored, Steph Curry Immortalized



On a night that the Charlotte Hornets planned to honor former player and current color commentary tv analyst Dell Curry for his outstanding contributions to the team and community, his NBA all-star son Steph would do him the biggest honor as he put on a basketball show that could only bring tears of pride to a father's face.

I'm sure the Hornets plans for Dell did not include his son's solo shooting clinic act, but what did they expect when inviting the NBA champion Golden State Warriors to town on a night they dubbed "Curry Night" at their arena.



Dell was presented with a key to "Buzz City" at half-time. Afterwards his son came out in the third quarter and scored 28 Warriors points, 24 of them in a row, for a total of 40 points in three quarters.  



Steph simply could not keep with his father's "do not ruin my night" request. He couldn't contain his enthusiastic urge to honor his father in a way that only he could.  Steph not only single-handedly brought down the Charlotte Hornets, he brought down the house as his hometown fans raved and cheered their prodigal son's return. 

Undefeated Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton was also on hand, wearing a #30 Dell Curry Hornets jersey, to witness the amazing father and son moment.

So what else is a son with extraordinary basketball powers to do when the spotlight is on him and his family. 

Flame On!
Final Score
Warriors 116
Hornets 99

Curry Scores 40, Leads Warriors to 20th Straight Win

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Oakland Raiders Get The Win

(AP Photo/Aaron Josefczyk)

It wasn't pretty. The wet weather in Tennessee didn't stop the Raiders and Titans from utilizing their passing games to the hilt.  It would be the Raiders offense showing poise in their ability to execute in the final minutes to score a do-or-die touchdown to win the game.  

Sure the Raiders made us fans pace back and forth while cursing them on every fourth quarter play. But in the end, thanks in part to a fourth down holding penalty against a Tennessee defensive back, the Raiders persevered.

They overcame earlier mistakes, scored when they absolutely had to and intercepted the opponent on the final offensive drive that could have forced overtime.

Bottom line, the Oakland Raiders found a way to finish a close game on the road in the rain.  They ended a three game losing streak and are still alive for a playoff birth.  With teams focusing on stopping their once high-powered offense, the Raiders are fighting through the growing pangs of what it takes to be consistently great.  

I still say the Raiders are looking to rediscover their rhythm after that bruising Pittsburgh Steelers loss four weeks ago.  If they can find that early season magic that had them looking like true playoff contenders, I could see them ending this season with at least a winning record.  When was the last time we could say that about our beloved Raiders?

Good job today team.  Game ball to my boy #10 Seth Roberts for his career receiving day with six catches for 113 yards and two touchdowns.   Seth showed just how talented a wide receiver he is on both touchdown catches. Also corner-back David Amerson played lights out defense once again.  I love it when the Raiders win.  

Win, lose or tie

Final Score
Raiders 24
Titans 21

Friday, November 27, 2015

Mission H.S. Repeats As Turkey Day Champions

Thanksgiving is made up of food, family and football. Yesterday's holiday began in reverse order for me.  I attended the cold, blustery confines of San Francisco's Kezar Stadium to watch the city high school football championship game between the Balboa Buccaneers and defending 2014 champion Mission Bears.


I've followed the Bears these past few years as they've established a winning culture after years of being almost non-existent and/or non-competitive. The boys in yellow with brown trim didn't disappoint as they captured the city championship title for the second year in a row.

The Buccaneers didn't make it easy for the defending champions as they nearly shutdown the Bears running game, a ground game that featured mostly a quarter-back option play that was unsuccessful at least 80% of the time.  But the Bears stuck with it as the play became a factor late in the game by producing first downs against a worn down Buccaneers defense.

The first quarter, with one turnover by each team, was good indication of the defensive theme the game would take on.  I counted a total of ten turnovers, four fumbles and six interceptions, advantage Bears (4-2) on interceptions and dead even on lost fumbles (2-2).     

Both teams scored amazing 22-yard touchdowns in the second quarter, the Bears a finger tip catch and run and the Buccaneers a pinpoint pass and run after the catch.

One of the interceptions by the Buccaneers was run back for a dazzling 92-yard touchdown, but a penalty after the interception nullified the touchdown, Buccaneers ball at the 8 yard line. With zero seconds left on the game clock the Buccaneers took a knee to end the first half with the score Bears 8 - Buccaneers 7.

For all the hype about the Bears offense being a juggernaut, the Buccaneers were definitely putting them to the test.  They had to be proud of their first half accomplishment in limiting the Bears to one touchdown and a two point conversion by what looked like a "Refrigerator Perry" type lineman ( #74) bulldozing two yards across the goal line with little opposition. Yes, The Refrigerator of 1985 Chicago Bears lore. #74 Lil Fridge has a future in football.

To Be Continued..........

After chowing down a cost inflated ($5) coscto-like hotdog and watching the Bears cheerleaders whip and nae nae themselves on and off the field, the half-time intermission gave way to a much anticipated second half football game. The autumn air had gotten more frigid.

The third quarter opened with the Buccaneers throwing an interception early. A beautiful Bears 46 yard pass and run for a touchdown was called back due to an illegal offensive shift penalty. The quarter saw both Teams having success in the passing games. The Buccaneers passed their way to the five yard line before fumbling away an opportunity to take the lead. It was on a broken play (mishandled handoff) that looked like daylight up the middle, but the runner seemed to hesitate and the Bears came crashing in to cause the turnover.

In the fourth quarter, after the Bears forced two interceptions the defending champions implemented a short passing game that racked up YACs (yards-after-catch).  Good coaching adjustment on the Bears part got them to the 2 yard line where a short touchdown run put them up by seven points.  Lil Fridge couldn't duplicate his two point conversion run, but the Bears were now up by seven points with 4:53 left in regulation.

Bears 14 - Buccaneers 7

Adding insult to injury, on the next play the Buccaneers kick return runner was knocked down by his own man and lay on the field shaken up until trainers could come out and attend to him. At least he didn't fumble the ball.

With a last gasp effort and sensing the early celebratory antics of the Bears, the feisty Buccaneers led an all out attack by air and land.  Though the Bears, leading by seven, seemed almost destined to win the game, the momentum was clearly with the Buccaneers on this desperation drive with the clock winding down.

A long pass, a high jump and snag out of the air over defenders and what looked to me like a backward fall into the end zone gave the Buccaneers a touchdown with 1:22 left in regulation.  The Bears shadowy sideline and fans went silently cold. The Buccaneers side showed sunshine and unrestrained jubilation at the chance to tie or win the game.

And that is what every mind and heart was waiting for in this moment of truth taking place at frigid Kezar Stadium; trailing 14-13, what will the Buccaneers coach attempt; a field goal or a two point conversion.  Does he have a Lil Fridge secret weapon ready to be unleashed?  Does his field goal kicker have ice water running through his veins?  Can his defense hold up in overtime? Or, as many of us fans were asking, is there overtime in high school championship games?

With less time than it takes to say the Lord's Prayer, the Buccaneers offense lined up at the two yard line for the two point conversion.  It had all happened so fast that there hadn't been enough time for the Bears, nor its fans, to let tension or fear settle in.  

The snap, the hand-off up the middle.  An outstretched runner in white with an orange helmet closing in on the goal line mobbed by a sea of yellow. 

Did he make it? I and the fan in front of me agreed that from our angle it looked like he did. We fans watched the referee straddling the goal line at the pylon area.  He appeared to be surrounded by camera and video men, none of which were indicating a touchdown. The call took a lifetime. Controversy was immediately brewing, on the field and in the stands. Finally it was confirmed, he'd come up short. The two point conversion attempt had failed.


Bears 14 - Buccaneers 13

The following Buccaneers on-side kick was secured by the Mission Bears and after a few kneel-downs the horn blared out signaling that regulation time had expired. An ocean of yellow and brown rushed onto the field to celebrate a Bears championship season




The Buccaneers coach would be questioned and probably second guessed by many on the final play call to go for two points. To us fans who watched the game, we feel the Buccaneers and Bears both played like champions and represented San Francisco high school football honorably. The two squads gave us a filling start to our Thanksgiving Holiday. 

If any of the young men who played in the game should read this post, know that I and those standing in my section of the stadium, Thank and Salute you and your team for a competitive showing of commitment and character. Always remember, its more about how we measure up to the expectations we have for ourselves than how we measure up against others. Expect greatness. Give your greatest effort. Achieve success.


The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender    - Vince Lombardi



11/19/2015 Giving his greatest: Balboa High football coach Edward Williams saves woman trapped in fire.


MISSION BEARS TAKE FOOTBALL TITLE!
The AAA/SF Section Varsity Football annual Turkey Day championship game took place November 26 with Mission successfully defending their title with an exciting 14-13 victory over Balboa. The surprising defensive battle culminated with the Bears stopping the Buccaneers a half yard short of the goal line on a two point conversion try with a minute remaining. The victory not only gives Mission the section crown, but also sends them off to the CIF NorCal playoffs December 5th against a yet to be determined opponent. Congratulations to both teams on a very entertaining game, and all the best to the Bears as they head off to battle for a State title!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Warriors Ambush Lakers, Snatch Record


The Golden State Warriors now own the NBA record for most consecutive wins (16-0) to open a season. They did it with a laugh-er against Bobe Kryant and the Los Angeles Lakers. 

Just a few years ago what Warriors fan in their right mind woulda thought that a visiting Lakers team could mean an early rest for the home team starters. Beating Annihilating teams like the Lakers, who've dominated the Warriors for decades, is just plain old poetic justice.

The Warriors put on a basketball team clinic tonight that had them up by as many as 40 points.  Almost everyone on the squad got into the mix and if you ask me, the fat lady was singing way before the first quarter ended with the Warriors leading 30-11.

As I post this they're winning 108-70 with 4:20 left in the game.  Like I said, a laugh-er. With former Warriors star Jason Richardson being honored at (R)oracle Arena, the night was made for record breaking championship basketball.

There's still a lot of basketball left to play in the season, but for now the defending NBA Champions can proudly stick this 16-0 record in their caps as they continue muscling their way toward another league championship. 

Oaktown, Oaktown!      Go Warriors!

Final Score
Warriors 111
Lakers 77

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Sunday's Prayer - "OTHERS"

Dear Lord, 

Help me live from day to day
In such a self-forgetful way
That even when I kneel to pray
My prayer will be for - Others.

Help me in all the work I do
To ever be sincere and true
And know that all I do for You
Must needs be done for - Others.

And when my work on earth is done
And my new work in heaven begun
May I forget the crown I've won
While thinking still of ---  Others.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Solo Tha Secret



Long Beach Beats Ya'll

Thursday, November 19, 2015

ri·dic·u·lous




In a different game with the same results, last night Steph led the Warriors to an unbelievable come-from-behind victory against the L.A. Clippers.  The defending Champions are now 13-0 on the season and receiving all the praises due a great basketball team.  

Even Warriors-hater analyst Charles Barkley, who proudly praised the Clippers formula for stopping the Warriors when they had them down by 23 points, acknowledged the dominance of the Warriors jump shooting as a team. All analysts agreed that Harrison Barnes play was key to the comeback.  

What I see in fourth quarter games once the Warriors start hitting those three-pointers are opponents fears and total shock at being .........Warriorized. They know it's coming and are unable to stop it.

It's official folks, the Golden State Warriors are UNSTOPPABLE!

Final Score
Warriors 124
Clippers 117

“We never feel like we’re out of it,” said Curry, who atoned for seven turnovers with 40 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and three steals. “Whether we’re going to win the game or not, you never know, but the mentality of our team and the way that we play is to play like we’re never out of it and to keep fighting.”

Sunday, November 15, 2015

UFC 193 - Wowwee HOLM



Challenger Holly Holm takes down Ronda Rousey with a devastating kick to the head to win UFC title. The kick was setup by Holm's great footwork, spacing and plan of attack

Rousey appeared completely knocked out after going down from the kick, as the referee had to stop Holm from pummeling her face into oblivion. With Rousey's lip split in half, probably from an earlier Holm elbow delivered perfectly, she had to be helped up off the canvas and taken to a Melbourne, Australia hospital as a medical precaution. 

Holly Holm wakes up this morning not only as a new Champion, but as the Buster Douglas of 2015. Her win against the crowned queen of UFC was unexpected and the way in which she won was simply legendary.  

Prefight event with Holly (team Holm) in jeans

AttaGirl Holly, I never cared much for all the Rousey hype.  Her in the sexy black dress with the belt slumped over her shoulder kinda rubbed me funny. Promotion shot or not. She's already got two guest appearances in movies scheduled for production in 2016.  But Ronda is a tough cookie and I expect to see her back in the ring challenging for the title in the very near future.


Holly Holm ladies and gentleman.  Eye of the Tiger!



Friday, November 13, 2015

1965 Pontiac GTO Tempest



Some automobiles, like women, hold their charm, beauty and elegance well into their 50's and beyond. Happy 50th Birthday you sexy beast.



Thursday, November 12, 2015

Steph's New Nickname: Ri·dic·u·lous





He's just frickin ridiculous in the way he launches basketballs from anywhere on the court and more times than not the shot goes through the hoop.

"Soul Cider," is 'ridiculous' spelled backwards or sideways, however you wanna look at it.  

That is what Steph Curry is to the champion Golden State Warriors; a quenching Cider for the soul of a 9-0 NBA team thirsting for another title. And believe it or not, the Cider is tasting better than last season.

Final Score
Warriors 100
Grizzlies 84

update: Following Night Steph Curry Goes For 46pts in 129-116 win over Minnesota Timberwolves in Minneapolis.


ri·dic·u·lous
rəˈdikyələs/

adjective
deserving or inviting derision or mockery; absurd.
"when you realize how ridiculous these scenarios are, you will have to laugh"

synonyms:

laughableabsurdcomicalfunnyhilariousrisible,drollamusingfarcical,
sillyludicrousMore