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September 16, 2019

There are several teams off to good starts in the NFL. Look at the Bills, Ravens and Niners among teams out of the gate 2-0.

The Dolphins have been woeful, giving up 40+ at home in consecutive weeks. The Giants fell to 0-2 as the offense struggled again.

The Steelers fell to 0-2 and lost Ben Roethlisberger to an elbow injury.

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September 9, 2019

The US Open produced special tennis. Rafa Nadal had to work almost five hours to beat 23-year old Danil Medvedev. Raa got his 19th Grand Slam title, moving just one behind Roger Federer.

Serena Williams fell short of tying Margaret Court, missing on a 24th Slam. She lost to 19-year old Bianca Andreescu.

The first full week of the NFL season saw the Ravens obliterate the Dolphins. Patrick Mahomes had another big game, as did Dak Prescott.

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September 2, 2019

I love going to the US Open.

You see the best of the best in action. Roger Federerenjoyed just another day in his tennis office; the guy is a Tennis Surgeon!

I shared a magical moment with GOAT Serena Williams, who I am hoping wins her 24th Grand Slam and makes tennis history . She deserves it and is one of the greatest athletes in the history of sports.

Handling tough moments for young phenoms a key in progressing: the support staff of Coco Gauff has to be at their BEST!

I have never seen such a multi-talented player in pro tennis a la Nick Kyrgios that has such a lackadaisical attitude. He picks spots and relies on his lethal 135 mph serve but plays so many loose points. Must be a nightmare to coach.

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August 26, 2019

The big headline came Saturday when word came out that Colts QB Andrew Luck retired.

Over an injury-plagued career, Luck finally had enough, hanging up his cleats at age 29. He is a smart guy and will do well in the future.

College football started and Florida’s defensive line keyed a Gator win over Miami.

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August 19, 2019

The wild card races continue to be intense. With a little more than a month left, it will create a lot of excitement.

NFL preseason is under way. A lot of young players are trying to impress to earn roster spots.

Tennis is getting ready to take center stage at the US Open next week. Madison Key boosted her confidence by winning in Cincinnati. Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer were upset.

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August 12, 2019

The Indians have made a great run and are battling the Twins in the AL Central.

The Mets have made serious noise in the NL wild card race.

Rafael Nadal won the Rogers Cup men’s event. Serena Williams suffered back spasms and had to withdraw from the Rogers Cup women’s final.

Preseason NFL action began. I wish they would only play two games.

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August 6th, 2019

It was great to see the latest class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame inducted. Names like Tony Gonzalez and Ed Reed earned their place in Canton.

It was an interesting stretch of the Tampa Bay Rays and Boston Red Sox.Tampa Bay dominated a series at Fenway. I have been so impressed with Kevin Cash.

The trade deadline passed and the Astros added several pitchers, including Zach Greinke. Putting him with Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole to push a tough rotation.

Tom Brady got a contract extension. Guess he will be around for a while.

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July 29th, 2019

The baseball deadline approached and there were several deals for pitchers. The Twins added reliever Sergio Romo while the Mets picked up Marcus Stroman.

The NFL training camps opened and there were several noteworthy injuries to wide receivers. AJ Green and Sterling Shepard went down.

Brooks Koepka was impressive in winning the FedEx St. Jude Classic.

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July 22nd, 2019

Manny Pacquiao had something to prove at age 40. He went into the ring in Las Vegas and knocked down Keith Thurman in round one en route to a split decision. Pac Man handed Thurman his first loss.

The British Open saw a number of brilliant performances. Shane Lowery was incredible, winning by six strokes.

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July 15th, 2019

Wimbledon gave us plenty of special moments.

Coco Gauff made noise as a 15-year old. Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer gave us a three-hour semifinal for the ages.

In the end it was Simona Halep and Novak Djokovic winning championships. Serena Williams fell short of her 24th Grand Slam. Roger Federer lost in a fifth set tiebreaker after almost five hours…wow!

The NBA also continued to make news this off-season. The Rockets acquired Russell Westbrook from the Thunder for Chris Paul. It will be interesting to watch James Harden reunite with Westbrook.

Another great week of sports.

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July 8th, 2019

It has been a wild off-season in the NBA.

The latest rumblings came from Los Angeles and it was not the Lakers, who already added Anthony Davis to join LeBron James.

Steve Ballmer’s team added Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Now the Clippers are the favorites to win the NBA title.

Major League Baseball hit the All-Star break. Most of the division races are not close so fans will concentrate on the wild card. The NL Central has been the most competitive division.

If you want to define MENTAL TOUGHNESS and ability to perform on the big stage, just look at the USNWT as they win a fourth World Cup. Amazing that they have been undefeated in a record 17 World Cup matches.

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June 30th, 2019

Major League Baseball put on a show in London as the Yankees battled the Red Sox.

The Bronx Bombers had the hot bats, putting up 29 runs in sweeping the two-game series. DJ LaMahieu has been a legit AL MVP candidate and he remained on fire.

The NBA free agency period started. The Nets made big noise with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving signing. The Celtics landed Kemba Walker. The Pelicans inked JJ Redick. Damian Lillard signed a supermax extension.

The Knicks lost out on several free agents, ouch.

Wow it is already a wild off-season.

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June 24th, 2019

While Zion Williamson dominated the NBA Draft, and a to of big names did not get called, the Yankees have been on fire in baseball.

Now that Didi Gregorius, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton are all back, watch out. Guys like Cameron Maybin, Gio Urshela and DJ Lemehieu have stepped up and put the Yankees in great shape.

Aaron Boone and Brian Cahman have done great work this season despite many injuries. The Bronx Bombers look solid.

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June 21st, 2019

Here are some thoughts on the 2019 draft:

WINNERS

New Orleans. Starting with Zion Williamson, the Pelicans had a lot to gain. The Anthony Davis trade turned into a haul of draft picks. Adding a young, big talent in Jaxson Hayes will pay dividends in the long run. Nickel Alexander-Walker provides an outside scoring threat.

Atlanta. The tandem of DeAndre Hunter and Cam Reddish will help up front, adding defensive help. Bruno Fernando is a nice pickup in round two. If Reddish can consistently contribute, he will be a big plus.

Boston. Brad Stevens may lose Kyrie Irving and Terry Rozier, so they stockpiled guards Romeo Langford, Carsen Edwards and Tremont Waters. All three were stars on their college teams. Then add solid forward Grant Williams, the SEC Player of the Year and this is a nice group.

New York. RJ Barrett will be a star in the Big Apple. He can score, rebound, pass and defend. Iggy Brazdeikas has potential down the line.

Washington. A sleeper pick adding Rui Hachimura and Admiral Schofield. They also kept Brad Beal.

San Antonio. Luka Samanic was a factor in the combine. I love Keldon Johnson at 29 as a steal. Quanndary Weatherspoon is a nice second round choice.

Memphis. Ja Morant and Brandon Clarke will be instant impact players.

LOSERS

Houston. No picks in this draft.

EARLY SURPRISE

Cameron Johnson to Phoenix at 11. An experienced player and outstanding shooter with good range. Thought he would go around 20.

LATE SURPRISES

Nassir Little to Portland at 25. A lottery pick type of talent. Only averaged 18 minutes a game last season, he will blossom.

Keldon Johnson to San Antonio at 29. Spurs get another star late.

Bol Bol to Denver at 44. He has something to prove and you cannot teach height.

WHAT HAPPENED?

As usual, a number of early-entry players did not get picked. Teams stash foreign players and that cuts the number of youngsters chosen.

Think about some of these players who starred in college and did not hear their name called: Naz Reid from LSU, Tyus Battle and Oshae Brissett of Syracuse, Shammorie Ponds of St. John’s, Moses Brown and Kris Wilkes of UCLA, Louis King of Oregon, Luguentz Dort of Arizona State, Jonta Porter of Missouri, Dedric Lawson of Kansas, and Zach Norvell of Gonzaga.

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June 19th, 2019

The NBA draft is Thursday and everyone has an opinion on what to expect.

 

I am excited because there is a lot of talent available. Zion Williamson will go number ne and the top three appears to be set. After that, it is a crapshoot.

 

Here are my projections of what I think should happen on Thursday. Enjoy the draft, baby!

 

  1. New Orleans Zion Williamson, Duke
  2. Memphis Ja Morant, Murray State
  3. New York RJ Barrett, Duke
  4. New Orleans DeAndre Hunter, Virginia
  5. Cleveland Jarrett Culver, Texas Tech
  6. Phoenix Colby White, North Carolina
  7. Chicago Cam Reddish, Duke
  8. Atlanta Darius Garland, Vanderbilt
  9. Washington Sekou Doumboya, Limonges
  10. Atlanta Jaxson Hayes, Texas
  11. Minnesota Nassir Little, North Carolina
  12. Charlotte Romeo Langford, Indiana
  13. Miami Kevin Porter Jr., USC
  14. Boston Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga
  15. Detroit Brandon Clarke, Gonzaga
  16. Orlando Keldon Johnson, Kentucky
  17. Atlanta Goga Bitadze, Mega Bemax
  18. Indiana Bol Bol, Oregon
  19. San Antonio Mfiondu Kabengele, Florida State
  20. Boston Tyler Herro, Kentucky
  21. Oklahoma City PJ Washington, Kentucky
  22. Boston KZ Okpala, Stanford
  23. Memphis Matisse Thybulle, Washington
  24. Philadelphia Carsen Edwards, Purdue
  25. Portland Bruno Fernando, Maryland
  26. Cleveland Nickel Walker-Alexander, Virginia Tech
  27. Brooklyn Cameron Johnson, North Carolina
  28. Golden State Daniel Gafford, Arkansas
  29. San Antonio Naz Reid, LSU
  30. Milwaukee Ty Jerome, Virginia
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June 17th 2019

I celebrated my 80th birthday last week and the sport world celebrated several championships.

The Toronto Raptors beat injury-plagued Golden State to win the NBA title. Kawhi Leonard was brilliant. Guys like Pascal Siakam and Fred Van Vleet stepped up their games. Congrats to first-year head coach Nick Nurse on the championship.

The St. Louis Blues won th Stanley Cup title, winning game seven in Boston. Ryan O’Reilly won the Conn Smythe as Playoff MVP, and Jordan Binnington was brilliant in goal.
Gary Woodland made a number of clutch shots in winning the US Open golf tourney.
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June 10th, 2019

I celebrated my 80th birthday and was treated to great sports action. 

Rafael Nadal continued to show his dominance on clay, winning his 12th French Open

Kawhi Leonard showed his greatness as the Raptors won twice at Golden State.

Rory McIlroy showed his greatness with a 61 to win easily in Canada.

Sir Winston won the last triple crown race of the year at the Belmont.

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June 3rd, 2019

The Golden State Warriors showed heart on Sunday. The fought to a road win despite injuries to Key Thompson and Kevan Looney. They already were without Kevin Durant. The Finals are now tied 1-1.

The heavyweight boxing division has had several big names dominating. Deontay Wlder, Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury were the three big names.

Fans wanted to see Wilder-Joshua or a rematch of Wilder-Fury, which was a wild draw.

So much for a Deontay Wilder-Anthony Joshua heavyweight mega-fight. Andy Ruiz Jr. shocked the world by beating the previously-unbeaten Joshua at Madison Square Garden. Back to the drawing board for the Brit.

Ruiz Jr. was like Buster Douglas against Mike Tyson. He came in as a huge underdog. He shook up the heavyweight division.

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May 27th, 2019

The NBA and NHL finals are set. The Warriors are in the finals for the fifth straight year. Only the Celtics had more consecutive finals appearances. They take on the Toronto Raptors, who rallied from 2-0 down to win four in a row to send the Bucks home.
The St. Louis Blues are in the Stanley Cup final for the first time since 1970. They will face the Boston Bruins from the Stanley Cup.
The Minnesota Twins have dominated the AL. Rocco Baldelli is doing a great job in his first season as manager.
The French Open got underway. Rafael Nadal is the King of Clay.
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May 21st, 2019

A night I will treasure, receiving the Sports Emmy Lifetime Achievement award. Thanks to my loving family, my second family at ESPN. I also want to thank so many special people, a la the late Scotty Connal and Jim Simpson for getting me started, Bob Ley in helping me in the studio and the Montag group for representing me.

It was quite an honor when you think about some of the prior winners. Joining the likes of Jim McKay, Curt Gowdy, Howard Cosell, Vin Scully, Brent Musberger and many others is special.
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Quote of the Week

“Antonio Brown is a multi-talented wide receiver who has to grow up as time is running out."

-Dick Vitale