Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Election Day Blog

A few quick hits before you get several links that will not fit together unless it is on this blog:

Mavs Lose again! 0-3

Wow. I guess the hangover may be on here. How do you lose the first 3? Well, you settle for jump shots (30 3-pointers last night), play defense on occasion, and seem to believe that you can turn on the switch anytime you want. I said it in the preseason, and it looks like I am on to something: The key was going to be how you handle being the hunted rather than the hunter. It is no longer acceptable to take nights off. Well, no time to panic, but it is time for Avery to get the boys attention quickly.’

One other thing on these guys: I want more and more and more Devin Harris. 13 minutes in the first game and 14 in the second is not acceptable! This is your future. Play him. He needs to play and he needs to learn. Avery coaches him as hard as anyone on the team, but do it on the court. Devin needs to be starting and playing 30 minutes a game. Do it.

Ron Washington? Who knew?

I must tell you, I had no idea on this one. I don’t know what to think. Dude seems like he can talk well, and he also seems to love him some him. But, I am here with an open mind. Let’s see if this can work. But, wow. A 2 year contract? That is what you offer radio guys. Not managers. Not much of a commitment from the team. But, let’s see what he can do. It can’t be worse than what we have had.

Ken Rosenthal likes the gamble

Washington's beliefs help explain why he probably stood little chance of becoming the A's next manager, but Beane understood his value as a coach, if not more. No one should expect Washington to turn Texas into the Runnin' Rangers; he lacks the players to make that happen. But he brings a clear vision of the way the game should be played, and that's a start.

Those who dismissed Rangers GM Jon Daniels, a 29-year-old graduate of Cornell, as another Ivy-League educated devotee of statistical analysis clearly had him pegged wrong. The Rangers' choice of Washington, combined with their recent re-hiring of former scout Don Welke as senior director of baseball operations, reflects the willingness of Daniels to embrace a variety of baseball philosophies.

One other thing: Washington, an African-American, becomes the second minority manager hired this off-season, joining the Marlins' Fredi Gonzalez, a Cuban. He might not be the last, either; Mets third-base coach Manny Acta, a Dominican, remains a strong possibility for the Nationals. The simple fact is, almost all of the intriguing first-time candidates are minorities. The hirings reflect that trend.
Maybe Washington will be terrific, maybe he'll be terrible, more likely he'll be somewhere in between. By rejecting Wakamatsu, the more conventional choice, the Rangers are showing they're not afraid. Rest assured, their new manager won't be, either.

Shawn blogs a solid point

I'll be the first to admit that Ron Washington was not who I had pegged for the Rangers dugout. I was rooting for the Rangers to hire Trey Hillman, who grew up in Arlington, has worked for the Rangers, and led the Nippon Ham Fighters to a win in the Japanese World Series last month. But the Rangers new manager brings a proven record of coaching success and a superior knowledge of the game.

This is the beauty of a fair and open process, and why it is important for black managers and black coaches to have the opportunity to interview for jobs. The sports experts and prognosticators didn't give Washington much of a chance at the Rangers gig. But give Ron Washington credit, he went into the interview (do coaches take their resumes to an interview?) and blew Rangers owner Tom Hicks and general manger Jon Daniels away with his baseball I.Q. and infectious personality.

But there are many cases where a Ron Washington may not have even had that opportunity. The National Football League instituted a rule that requires any team with a coaching vacancy to interview a "minority" candidate, but the policy hasn't been well received. The climate of this country is anti-anything that looks like affirmative action. Americans would much rather preserve an employers right to discriminate. Ron Washington represents an example of what can happen if African-Americans have an opportunity to interview; whether it be at IBM, Sprint, Ford, or the Chicago Bears.

Ron Washington’s spare playing career ….Cleveland? Well!

Mavs Lose again!

Within a span of 2 minutes, 41 seconds, the Mavericks saw their fortunes change during Monday night's 107-104 loss to the Golden State Warriors.

First, the Mavs lost forward Josh Howard for at least three games when he sprained his left ankle after falling on Mickael Pietrus' right foot with 6:35 remaining before halftime. A short time later, coach Avery Johnson drew a pair of quick technical fouls from referee Danny Crawford and was ejected.

Johnson protested heavily and drew his first technical after no foul was whistled when Jason Terry drove the lane for a dunk and was plastered by Mike Dunleavy and Andris Biedrins. After that, Johnson had to be restrained by assistant coach Joe Prunty.

But Johnson broke free, walked over and whispered something into Crawford's left ear. He was immediately tossed after that, with assistant coach Del Harris taking over the helm.

"Jason Terry getting thrown out of the game obviously hurt us, because obviously we can use his offense," Johnson said. "X-rays, were negative on Howard. He'll have an MRI today and will not make the upcoming three-game road trip to the Los Angeles Clippers, Phoenix and Portland.

Some notes from the Mavericks PR department about the loss to Golden State last night:

• Golden State has now won three straight over Dallas and also four straight over the Mavericks at American Airlines Center. Dallas has lost both of its home games this season. The Mavericks only lost consecutive home games once in 2005-06 (11/26 vs. Memphis and 12/1 vs. San Antonio). Following those back to back home losses, Dallas finished the season with a 29-5 mark at home.

• Dallas attempted 30 3-pointers tonight. The most 3-pointers the Mavericks attempted in 2005-06 was 26 and they only took 20 or more seven times. Dallas had eight more 3FGA than FTA tonight, marking the second time this season it has had fewer FTA than 3FGA this season. That occurred just five times in 2005-06.

• Dallas has given up 100+ points in each of the past two games. The Mavericks only allowed 100+ points in consecutive games three times last season.

Nelson v. Cuban

Nelson argues that Cuban owes him $6.6 million in deferred money from the original contract he signed with previous owner Ross Perot Jr. Cuban counters there is a clause in the contract that negates those payments now that Nelson is earning money from Golden State. The two are headed to arbitration.

Nelson said he won't agree to close the proceedings. He wants everything in the open. Cuban said that's fine with him.

That will be interesting.

"No one ever asked us permission for him to coach Golden State," Cuban said. "That's
a whole other issue. If he was trying to negotiate some things knowing he had another job and us not knowing, or if he had the possibility of another job ...
"I just want to put all this to rest. I'm tired of 'Aren't I wonderful, isn't he mean to me.' I mean, come on."

The Cowboys are just a .500 team right now ….

After all the T.O.ying around this off-season to a team that narrowly missed the playoffs, the Cowboys are one game worse than they were at the midway point last year.

They were 5-3 in 2005.
They are 4-4 in 2006.

"It's who we are," Cowboys linebacker Bradie James said Sunday. "When it's our time to win those games, we don't. Evidently, it's not our time."

Forgive James if he sounded fatalistic. The wounds from a uniquely demoralizing 22-19 loss against Washington were raw and painful in the hour after the game.
One day later, the Cowboys were dealing with the reality that in spite of all of their supposed upgrades, they remain nothing more than average.

Stars lose heartbreaker to Vancouver with a final minute goal

Tippett said he was impressed with Smith’s handling of the situation and said he was frustrated with the power play’s lack of success.

“I’d like to give him a little more help than a single goal,” Tippett said.
The Stars almost did that, generating a scoring chance on the potential game-winner late in the third period. Jussi Jokinen forced a turnover, and Mike Modano walked in with a chance that Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo stopped. However, the puck trickled back to Jokinen and he fired a backhanded shot that appeared headed for an open net. But Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo stuck up his glove while sitting on the ice and closed the door.

“I thought, ‘Get it up,’ and I got it up, but … great save,” Jokinen said. “It’s tough. I had the keys to the game in my hand. I felt I had a good shot, but he was better.”

Brenden Morrow then took a penalty with 2:17 remaining, and Vancouver’s lifeless power play finally struck. Mattias Ohlund hit the post on a potential slam dunk, but then Taylor Pyatt flipped in the rebound with 44.7 seconds remaining, and the Stars had only their third loss of the season.

Morrow said he thought the penalty could have been a no-call. He was fighting for position and felt he shouldered Josh Green in the chest. He was called for elbowing, and the Canucks' power play received one last chance.

“I know it looked bad. I pulled him in and then I leaned into him. I think I got him (in the chest),” Morrow said. “But the referee was back over here, and he probably saw the head go back. It’s a judgment call, but it’s tough to take with two minutes left.”

Still, the Stars felt there was a little bit of karma to the moment. Dallas avoided a tie with Edmonton on Friday because of a controversial call.

“That was probably a make-up for Edmonton the other night,” Modano said.

My thoughts exactly. Easy come on Friday, Easy go on Monday.

Richie Whitt features Marty Turco in the Dallas Observer

We think you're a choker, a goalie who stands on his head against Atlanta in November but falls on his face against Colorado come May. We think you probably handle your failures selfishly and internally, one of those "island" goalies who rarely fraternizes with teammates. We think in the aftermath of another collapse to the Avalanche last spring you spent the summer wallowing in self-pity, gaining weight and losing confidence. We think you shaved your head because you somehow reason that looking different will make you play different. And we think you won't answer half our questions, because you'd rather face point-blank frozen rubber than the past.


"It hurts, but nothing good could come out of pretending it didn't happen," Turco says, digging into his psyche and his China bistro lunch. "I can't run and hide. Life goes on. The playoffs were a complete disappointment. I didn't dwell on it, but I didn't ignore it either. First was acceptance, then the process of determining what I could learn from it. I didn't just hope I'd play better this year; I tried to make myself a better player.

"And really, I've just always wanted short hair. Low maintenance, ya know? You should grab some chow. Delicious."

Just like that, Turco crosses his legs, opens his soul and so skate-saves our preconceived notions that I feel like I'm writing for the Dallas Oblivious. Handling his chopsticks as deftly as he handles a goalie stick, he spends an illuminating hour in Frisco picking apart chicken, beef, noodles and every last scrap of pessimism.

Says Turco: "I've got a renewed belief in myself."

But after last April's kick to the crotch, trusting Turco and his Stars is like buying stock in the li'l boys who cried wolf. The Stars were Dallas' best team the last decade and the city's last organization to lift a championship trophy ('99). Last season they won a franchise-record 53 games and the Western Conference's No. 2 seed. Finally recovering from a season lost to lockout, the team's loyal-but-limited fan base was edgy to test-drive a sport trying to restore its small-town, big-time feel.

Meet Mrs. Nik Hagman ….

good pictures of Aggie-Sooner College Gameday

Heyman looks at the likely to be traded this winter

Overall, though, the list falls well short of greatness. But the winter market won't necessarily fizzle. It could still be propped up by some monster trades if anyone's willing to pull the trigger. Potentially, the five biggest names who could hit the trade market are Alex Rodriguez, Vernon Wells, Manny Ramirez, Miguel Tejada and Mark Teixeira. Though it's much more likely that all five stay put than all five go, a quickie poll of executives suggests that the order of the likeliest to be traded, from most likely to least, may be: 1. Wells. 2. Teixeira. 3. Tejada. 4. Ramirez. 5. A-Rod.

CoCo takes a few parting shots

Francisco Cordero criticized the Texas Rangers for trading him, saying he was grateful to have ended up with the Milwaukee Brewers.

Cordero was 7-4 with a 4.81 ERA and six saves with the Rangers, who dealt him to the Brewers on July 28 along with outfielders Kevin Mench and Laynce Nix, and minor league left-hander Julian Cordero -- no relation to Francisco. All-Star outfielder Carlos Lee and outfielder Nelson Cruz went to the Rangers.

Cordero was 3-1 with a 1.69 ERA and 16 saves with the Brewers. He was an All-Star in 2004, setting a Texas record with 49 saves, but he set a major league record with five blown saves in April and lost the closer's job to Akinori Otsuka.

"They did not think about what I did for so long," Cordero told The Associated Press
on Friday. "In Texas, they made stupid changes that didn't make sense. Lee is a free agent and now he's leaving. That's why the manager [Buck Showalter] isn't there anymore."

Dateline comes to the Metroplex

Doogie Howser is not into chicks …More for Grubes…

A few items of Cowboys follow-up. First, the Bad Luck Blues are being talked about again. Many believe that the Blues always bring bad luck. I have always wanted to see if there is true substance behind this number or if it is all imagination. Of course, it should be noted that if you never wear blue at home, then you will have a real hard time in any color if it is only worn on the road. For instance, my Pack have an awful record in their white. Funny what playing at home can do for a jersey color.

Anyway, I wanted to begin to compile my own stats and I decided to start with the 8 Super Bowls Dallas has played in.

Super Bowl V Loss in Blue
Super Bowl VI Win in White
Super Bowl X Loss in White
Super Bowl XII Win in White
Super Bowl XIII Loss in White
Super Bowl XXVII Win in White
Super Bowl XXVIII Win White
Super Bowl XXX Win in White

There: 0-1 in Blue. 5-2 in White. That proves it. Feel free to send in your own evidence.



The Aikman / Buck theory you speak of isn't so much some jinx, but the fact that that crew calls the big games of the day. Aside from the Carolina loss, the Cowboys have lost the big games, games that a #1 crew would call. They win the games where Fox and CBS trots out their spare 4th or 5th crew because those are easy games Dallas should win.

Also, if you are Mark Columbo on that blocked FG, and you just blocked to the inside and watched Vincent run by untouched on the outside, what is going through your mind? Couldn't you at least grab his jersey, take the 10 yard penalty and at least kick it again? Speaking of this play, did you see Ron Jaworski on ESPN blame the interior line and a low kick for the block? For someone who claims to watch hours of tape, how does this man still have a job?


Borat goes to Fort Worth

Poor Drew

West Ham beats Arsenal on Sunday in Arabic?


Cap It said...

Wow, early blog. Me like.

I have this sinking feeling that someday, within 2 years, we will rue this week's Rangers manager choice.

I hope I'm wrong.

p1dean said...

My prediction for the next 20 years of Ranger baseball...start strong, fade after the break.

Me like Peter King's MMQB comment on F.T.O...."He just drops too many balls."

I have a question for Basketball...why not move the start of the season back to January? Then run through those dog days of summer and finish up just before NFL kickoff? I loves me basketball, but it gets so buried by football in Nov/Dec.

Happy election day everyone...

Brad said...


Go back to sleep Bob.

and Thanks for the link.

Mavs suck.

Stars were due for a loss.

Dallas sports are really beating me down this week.

AttnyDan said...

I wonder about this Hire. Can a team be punished for hiring someone BECAUSE of the color of their skin just like they can be for NOT hiring someone because of it?

Ok, I'll go put my hood back on.

Just Sayin' said...

I think we should hold judgement on the new hire until Norm makes love to him.

Buck's a critic said...

This is the worst day of every two years.

Look at me! I'm generic media personality (not a specific shot at Bob)! I think I should tell EVERYONE to be sure to go vote!

It's OK to not vote people. If you don't understand what you are voting for, then don't vote. If you don't WANT to vote, then don't vote. In a perfect world, everyone would care, and everyone would understand the issues. This world isn't perfect.

You wouldn't try to tune your own car if you didn't know how. Sometimes not doing something is better that doing something with recless abandon.

Brad said...

I hear Norm is very tender.

Rangers fans all have the "how much worse could it possibly be?" attitude. I think everyone's optimistic because of it. Go Ron Washington!

In case anyone is wondering, it's been 147 days since the Mavs won a basketball game. (give or take)

Bone of Death said...

Our new manager looks homeless or like a Chappelle show sketch character, take your pick.

DrewJ said...

I agree with Brad. Ranger's fans will rue this choice? What's the worst that can happen. The Ranger's don't make the playoffs? What exactly is the downside.

After reading Jamey's email this morning I'm more excited about him (because Jamey is my leader). If anything it sounds like we're going to have another Ozzie Guillen on our hands (or at least someone like Avery or the Tuna who are good for some off the wall media quotes).

And F Corso. Doesn't he know his anti-pick only works when Fowler is there?