How was your week

Posted: May 30, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

If you’ve listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast or I’m sure I’ve mentioned it here multiple times baseball is my favorite sport. I’m guessing this goes back to the fact that little league was the first league I played in as a child. I’m sure it also helped that my father always had his vacation in the summer time; so we would attend baseball games together. It just kind of led down the path to baseball moving to the front of the line when it comes to my love of sports.

When the owners sent their first proposal to the players union and had a plan to start playing games on July 4th weekend I was excited and overly optimistic that their was going to be baseball season.

As happy as I was that it looked like my favorite sport would be coming back soon I knew there would be some issues that would have to be worked out in this agreement. The unfortunate mistake I made was I gave both side too much credit on their true intentions of bringing baseball back.

I’m not sure how much negotiations took place on the first proposal the owners sent to the players, but after the Blake Snell rant it was clear the players had a lot of issues with it. In return the owners came up with a second proposal and I can completely understand why the players and their union turned that one down almost as quickly as I got it.

It’s starting to appear as though the owners aren’t negotiating in good faith and their using this situation to try and gain back some of the issues they’ve either given up on or loss to the layers and their union in previous negotiations.

I can understand that the owners would like the players to take a salary cut or reduction because they’re not playing a full season, but the number they’re asking the players to take is ridiculous. This almost seems like more of a plan on the owners part to turn the lower paid players against the higher paid players. In this owners proposal the higher paid players would be asked to give back more of their salary than the lower paid players would. Now the owners can point at the higher paid players in the game and try to say that it’s their fault there’s no baseball season.

There where also some reports out their that said if this proposal from the owners went through that some of the higher paid players who would be asked to take a large pay cut would sit out the season. Now you have to wonder how the season would look if players like Mike Trout, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado along with some others sat out the season.

As it’s starting to look more and more like there isn’t going to be a baseball season team owners have started to make moves to try and deal with the monetary losses they’re going to face. On Thursday there where hundreds of minor league players released and there are more players expected to be released as it’s looking like the entire minor league season could be cancelled.

Teams are saying that the majority of these players would’ve been released at the end of spring training if things would’ve played out as they normally had. It appears as though more than 1000 players will end up being released by teams during these cuts. Some of the players that where released have expressed concern that this may be the end of their careers while payers on the bubble with those teams that haven’t made cuts yet have to be concerned about their about their baseball future.

While some teams have already made some moves with their team employees either by laying them off or just furloughing them on Friday it was the Arizona Diamondbacks turn to make this move.

Arizona let about one quarter of the team employees go because of the Coronavirus outbreak while the the employees that are staying on will be taking a 15% pay cut with the teams higher paid employees losing a bigger percentage of their income. This is very similar to the second proposal the owners sent the players.

The majority of the employees the Diamondbacks laid off or furloughed where on the business side of the organization; particularly in ticket sales. The teams baseball operations department will remaining mostly unaffected for now.

We’ve seen multiple athletes use their own money during this pandemic to help out others who have had some trouble during the this time and David Price of the Los Angeles Dodgers is the next player to do such a thing.

Now remember Price hasn’t even thrown a pitch in a game that counts for the Dodgers as he was acquired in a trade this past off season., but he’s still helping out his new teammates.

Price will give each minor league player who is not on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster $1,000 for the month of June. Price’s act of generosity will impact just over 200 people facing unprecedented difficulty during the coronavirus outbreak.

Now the Dodgers themselves had already committed to continuing their $400 a week payments to minor league players. The Dodgers also have this plan in place for those training out of the teams academy in the Dominican Republic through June.

Most minor league players earn below minimum wage and are not protected by the Major League Baseball Players Association. While the minor league players pay is decided by the team itself and some of those teams have chose to stop paying their minor leaguers the MLB players received an advance of $170 million for April and May and won’t receive any more than that if the season is canceled.

It’s nice to see players like Price reach out and give a hand to these minor league players. As it start to look more and more like not only the minor league season, but the major league baseball season could be cancelled these player will need some help.

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want.

You cam also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: May 27, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, hockey, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Well it looks like the National Hockey League has got it’s plan in place to finish their 2019-20 season. Now all we need to know is the official start date and where they’ll be playing.

This news came out last week and not much of anything has changed. It’s going to be a 24-team playoff format. The top four seeds in each division will get byes and play each other in a round robin tournament while the remaining teams will face off in best of five game series.

Here’s how this shakes out:

In the Eastern Conference, the Boston Bruins (44-14-12, 100 points), Tampa Bay Lightning (43-21-6, 92 points), Washington Capitals (41-20-8, 90 points) and Philadelphia Flyers (41-21-7, 89 points) will each have a bye and play each other once to determine the order of the top four seeds for the first round of the playoffs.

In the Western Conference, the St. Louis Blues (42-19-10, 94 points), Colorado Avalanche (42-20-8, 92 points), Vegas Golden Knights (39-24-8, 86 points) and Dallas Stars (37-24-8, 82 points) will each have a bye and play round-robin to determine their seeding order.

Back into the Eastern Conference. The Qualifying Round will have four best-of-5 series: the Pittsburgh Penguins (40-23-6, 86 points) vs. the Montreal Canadiens (31-31-9, 71 points); the Carolina Hurricanes (38-25-5, 81 points) vs. the New York Rangers (37-28-5, 79 points); the New York Islanders (35-23-10, 80 points) vs. the Florida Panthers (35-26-8, 78 points); and the Toronto Maple Leafs (36-25-9, 81 points) vs. the Columbus Blue Jackets (33-22-15, 81 points).

While over in the Western Conference best-of-5 qualifying round series are: the Edmonton Oilers (37-25-9, 83 points) vs. the Chicago Blackhawks (32-30-8, 72 points); the Nashville Predators (35-26-8, 78 points) vs. the Arizona Coyotes (33-29-8, 74 points); the Vancouver Canucks (36-27-6, 78 points) vs. the Minnesota Wild (35-27-7, 77 points); and the Calgary Flames (36-27-7, 79 points) vs. the Winnipeg Jets (37-28-6, 80 points).

It seems like the NHL would like to get this started by July 1st, but that hasn’t been made official just yet. It also appears as there will be a two to three week training camp for teams to prepare for this playoff format.

The plan is for these games to be played in two cities which are still undecided. In a perfect world these two cities would be in different time zones to help out the television broadcast, but that’s not a priority according to the NHL. The NHL’s commissioner Gary Bettman has said the decision on the hub cities and when play will begin will depend on COVID-19 conditions, testing ability and government regulations. A comprehensive system for testing will be in place in each hub city, and each team will be permitted to travel a maximum of 50 personnel, including players, coaches and staff.

While it’s still unclear where these games ight be played it does look like the NHL has narrowed it’s choices to 10 cities. Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Edmonton, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Pittsburgh, Toronto and Vancouver are all in the running to host.

If the NHL can get this up and running it will put them in a very interesting position. While we have soccer, NASCAR and the Korean Baseball Organization to watch none of the four what are considered major sports have had a plan in place until this one. Now to be fair the NFL season is still months away and they haven’t missed any games because of this pandemic.

I would be very interested to know if non-NHL fans would tune into these games to get a sports watching fix; so to speak. If they did it could be a big, big opportunity for the NHL to get some new fans.

Major League Baseball ha stated that they’d like to start their season on July 4th weekend and if they did that would hurt the NHL’s drawing power, but with the trouble that the MLB owners are having trying to get a agreement done with the players union it’s looking less and less like they’ll make that July 4th start date.

The other question of course is; what will the National Basketball Association do?

The NBA has announced that they where looking at a two city plan like the NHL is going with, but they knew that they’d be playing games in Orlando Florida and Las Vegas Nevada. It makes sense for the NBA to do this because they play summer league games in these cities.

Unfortunately this is all we know about what the NBA might do. The National Basketball Players Association executive director Michelle Roberts used the term “overwhelming” when discussing if the players wanted to finish the 2019-20 season.

It’s been reported that a joint task force between the NBA and the NBPA has been working together to negotiate the plans for a possible return to action. They reportedly hope to issue guidelines about a return to play before June 1. Roberts does not believe the union will need to vote on these plans because of the collective bargaining that has already taken place through the joint task force and the calls she is making with every team.

It looks like will have to wait and see if we get some news on what the NBA is going to do come June 1st. Will they use a playoff format similar to what the NHL is doing? Or will they actually try and finish the regular season? Hopefully will find out soon.

Let’s say the NHL gets it’s plan off the ground and they start playing on July 1st and maybe the NBA isn’t too far behind. The biggest question of course is; will you be watching? I think right out of the gate it’s almost not going to matter what sport is on just a long as it’s a sport that draws decent interest. Don’t forget that when NASCAR had it’s first race it had over 6.3 million people watch it. Do you think a returning NHL game would do as well or better than that?

Tune in to the live broadcast of Sports Time Radio on BlogTalkRadio.com. We’ve been starting the podcast at 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday due to Dan the Man’s current work schedule, but hopefully will be returning to our regular 5:30 p.m. start time soon. Of course Schaumburg Stu and I our still start at 5:00 p.m. on Fridays; so listen.

Also if you miss the podcast live remember all you have to do is swing by TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

 

How was your week

Posted: May 23, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, hockey, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

It seems as though the NHL and the NBA have similar plans to restart their seasons. Both leagues are looking into playing their games in just two cities which they’re “hub cities” and while the NHL’s plan has is slowly starting to take shape there is less of an idea on what the NBA might do.

The NHL is going with what would be described as a 24 team conference based playoff format. The top four team in each conference would get first round byes. These top teams would be determined by the standings points percentage of each team when the regular season was stopped on March 12th.

The 5th through 12th seeds would face off in a best of five series to narrow the field down to the traditional 16 team playoff field the NHL normally uses. From there it would be the usual Stanley Cup playoff set up with those 16 teams.

On Monday the NHL’s Commissioner Gary Bettman said that they’ve found 8 or 9 cities that they’d consider using as “hub cities”. The original plan was for the NHL to use just two “hub cities”, but Bettman mentioned the possibility that the NHL could use up to four “hub cities”. It’s unclear which cities are in the running to host these NHL games, but it’s apparent that Las Vegas is a heavy favorite to be one of those cities.

The NHL looks at expanding the playoffs to 24 teams for this season as the best solution for the teams that where near the bottom of the playoff race when the season was stopped. For example the Arizona Coyotes get the 11th seed, but they where just four points out of a wild card spot and they had 12 regular season games left to play.

The National Hockey League Players Association executive board voted to approve a 24 team conference based playoff format presented by the owners for a potential restart of the 2019-20 NHL season sometime this summer.

It does appear that they may be a few items to work out though. One of the issues will be if there will be reseeding in the playoffs. The NHL released just a straight bracket format for this playoff set up, but the players would prefer to see reseeding done after each round.

I’m sure you’re wondering what the Top 4 teams in each conference would do while the other 16 teams are playing in the opening round. Well these teams would face off against each other in a round robin style tournament to stay sharp. It was a concern of the players about what these four teams would do and this round robin tournament would answer that question.

The NHLPA does have some reservations about expanding the playoffs to 24 teams and they’ve said they’d like to see a more traditional 16 team playoff format. With so many teams bunched at the bottom of the standings it seems as though allowing then all to get into the playoffs makes sense since each team had enough regular season games left to make a run into the playoffs.

Do you like the idea the NHL is going with here? I think the more important question is if and when the NHL restarts; will you be watching?

Now the NBA’s plan is much, much less clear, but they’ve also mentioned using the “hub city” style set up like the NHL. Now unlike the NHL the NBA has more or less decided that they’ll play their games in Orlando and Las Vegas; so it would be very similar to their summer league program.

Even though nothing has been decided by the NBA one of the points of contention seems to be if the players will be allowed to leave what was described as the “bubble” locations the teams would be playing in.

Los Angeles Lakers forward Jared Dudley told reporters that “You will be allowed to leave.” This situation was apparently discussed during the conference call the players had with Commissioner Adam Silver and National Basketball Players Association executive director Michele Roberts. Dudley did add “Now just because you leave, if we’re going to give you that leeway, if you come back with corona, you can’t play.”

It’s been mentioned that the primary places players will spend their time would  include hotels, gymnasiums and dining areas. While they’re in this “bubble” locations. Commissioner Silver referred to it as a “campus” like environment. Dudley mentioned that “there will be rigorous testing inside the bubble”.

How do you think the NBA players would handle this situation. Do you see some of them leaving the “bubble” location for whatever reason? We’re looking at 30 teams with a minimum of 12 players per team; so that’s going to be a lot of players in the same location looking for something to possibly do.

If a player was to leave the “bubble” location and then tested positive for the Covid-19 virus after returning how would his teammates feel about that player?

Dudley said that it would be “somewhat selfish” for a player to do this, but he believes that the NBA’s frequent testing would show it rather quickly. I myself would be more interested to see how that players teammates handle the situation and how that player ended up being treated.

While it’s been said that players would be allowed to leave the NBA’s “bubble” location you have to wonder if the superstar players like LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo or Kawhi Leonard or another player at that level would be allowed to leave. Obviously there’s no way they could stop those players for leaving, but these are the type of players that hold their teams future in their hands and a positive Covid-19 test would not only be bad for that player, but could end that players team season.

I’m sure will learn more about what the NHL and the NBA are going to do, but it appears as both leagues are set on finishing their seasons in some way.

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the live version of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you’d like.

You can find me on Twitter @Burketime

 

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: May 20, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, baseball, NASCAR, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Where you one of the almost six and a half million people who tuned in to watch the NASCAR race on Sunday? I was, but to be fair I’m a fan  of NASCAR; so I would’ve watched anyway. This ended up being the most watched non-Daytona 500 race in three years.

Kevin Harvick picked up the win Sunday at the Darlington Speedway in The Real Heroes 400. Harvick led 154 laps on Sunday including the most important one the last one. Alex Bowman led 41 laps and ended up coming home in 2nd. Kurt Busch finished 3rd while Chase Elliott was 4th with Denny Hamlin coming in 5th to round out the Top 5.

Now if you wanted to watch Sunday’s NASCAR race and maybe forgot it was on or you just plain missed it you won’t have to wait long to get a chance to watch another race. Why is that? Well the next NASCAR race is tonight. The drivers and their teams stayed at Darlington Speedway for tonight’s race. They’ll run the Toyota 500 tonight on the same track that they raced on this past Sunday.

Ryan Preece starts on the pole tonight with Ty Dillion joining him on the front row starting 2nd. Joey Logano starts 3rd; Clint Bowyer will start 4th and Ryan Blaney rounds out the Top 5 starting 5th.

The Top 20 finishers from Sunday’s race were inverted to set the starting lineup for tonight. Drivers lining up in positions 21 through 39 are there as that is where they finished in Sunday’s race.

Due to the possibility of inclement weather NASCAR officials have moved the start time of tonight’s race up. The race was originally scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. Central time. The decision was made to move the stat time of the race up to 5:00 p.m. Central time to try and get the entire race in. The race airs live on FS1 tonight.

The Xfinity race which was originally scheduled to be run yesterday was moved to Thursday because of weather. The Xfinity race will start at Noon tomorrow.

This is the second race at Darlington Speedway in a four day span. This is also just the 6th race of the NASCAR season. This is also the first time since July 4th 1984 that there is a NASCAR race on a Wednesday. That last Wednesday NASCAR race was at Daytona and it was won by Richard Petty. That was Petty’s 200th and final win of his NASCAR career.

While I don’t expect as many people to be watching tonight’s race as they had on Sunday, but it will be interesting to see how many people they do get to watch. Will you be one of those people watching tonight?

Last week the owners in Major League Baseball sent a proposal to restart the season to the players union. I wasn’t surprised when there was some complaining right out of the gate by some players. That’s to be expected because there always is someone who doesn’t like something in these kind of negotiations, but other than the complaints we really haven’t heard anything on if they’ve made any progress on getting the season started.

Now the plan was to get the season restarted on July 4th weekend, but there was also talk of having a spring training that would last about two weeks. Now I don’t think it would take too long for a player to get ready to go back to spring training, but the fact that there’s been no news at all has to be concerning. To be honest I didn’t dig to deep looking for news; so it’s possible there has been some rebuttal  by the players union and would have to guess that the two sides have at least been in contact with each other, but who knows.

Now if you’re a baseball fan or maybe just have casual interest in the game of baseball I’m sure that you’ve heard the incredibly stupid rant that Blake Snell went on while he was on Twitch. I’ve talked about that a couple of times on the Sports Time Radio podcast; so I don’t want to get into it here again, but I do want to look at this from another angle.

Now Snell was crying about not getting all of his money while he’s already been paid $286,500 this season without playing a game and I’m under the impression that most if not all major league baseball players have gotten some type of pay. Now they’re being paid by owner who aren’t having any income come in; so they’re looking at taking big financial losses this season.

Since this involves millionaires and billionaires most people understandably don’t care about this, but there’s a group of players that should care greatly about this and they should want the season to be restarted and the owners to start making money. That group is any player that is going to be a free agent after whatever the 2020 season turns out to be.

Mookie Betts is going to probably be the top free agent on the market this coming off season. Now Betts is in line of a big pay day and could possibly be set to get a contract in the $300 million dollar area like Bryce Harper and Manny Machado did when they hit the free agent market.

Now if an owner loses hundreds of millions of dollars this season like it appears that they’re projected to; are they really going to be doing that much spending in the off season? Now I know that immediately the players union will cry collusion and in most case they’re correct, but will that be the case this coming off season.

Right now the proposal has teams playing just one game over a half a season. Also remember there have been a lot of people who have been either laid off or have lost jobs do to this pandemic. How are ticket sales going to be? Do you think that ballparks will be full right out of the gate? Or is it going to take a little time until people will be able to afford to buy tickets to the games?

This is going to be an interesting situation that players like Snell don’t have to deal with and clearly wasn’t thinking about when he shot his mouth off online. I’m sure his soon to be free agent union brothers are just thrilled that he wants to get all his money when they’ll be looking for there’s in the off season.

Tune in to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but remember that the podcast is also available for you to listen to on TuneIn.com.

I’m out there on Twitter @Burketime

How was your week

Posted: May 16, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, football, NASCAR, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

As we hopefully get closer to having sports to watch again I’m interested to now how you spent your time during this pandemic.

I’ve noticed that every television station that shows sports; even the stations that just air sports on he weekend have been showing replays of old events. They’ve shown some kind of game, matches, tournaments or in some cases tournament matches. Have you been watching these?

There’s no real reason for it, but I just don’t enjoy these at all. I’ll stop on one for a few minutes here and there, but they just don’t hold my attention. I’ll try to catch a great play or something of importance that happened in that game, but if I don’t find that play or series it’s just fine. I don’t know if it’s the fact that I know the outcome of the game or what, but I just haven’t enjoyed watching these games.

Now if you’re watching these I’d like to know what you’ve found interesting or what makes you continue to watch. Maybe it’s just one sport that you’re tuning into or maybe you’re someone who covers a large spectrum of sports. Either let me know what you’ve found of interest or maybe you’ve noticed something that you didn’t see the first time you watched the event.

With everything sports wise kind of being shutdown and with me not paying a ton of attention I was kind of caught off guard when I realized that Dak Prescott still hasn’t signed his franchise tag contract with the Dallas Cowboys.

With the franchise tag Prescot would make a little over $31 million dollars this season and then would have the opportunity to go back on the free agent market at the end of this coming season. Now of course the Cowboys could use another franchise tag on him and hold onto him for another season as they try to work out a long term contract.

As of now there’s still plenty of time for these two sides to work out a deal to keep Prescott in a Cowboys uniform for a long time, but can they get that done. It seems as though the two sides have been far apart salary wise and right now it doesn’t seem like Prescott isn’t give anything back on his side.

As negotiations go on Prescott will have another option. He can hold out. Now we’ve seen multiple players go this route, but so far Le’Von Bell is the only one that’s held out for an entire season. Could a hold out by Prescott get the Cowboys to move their salary offer higher than what it is now?

Don’t forget the Cowboys just dealt with one of their top skill position players holding out. Ezekial Elliott didn’t report to Cowboys camp last July as he wanted a new contract even though he had two years remaining on the contract he had. Elliott’s hold out lasted about five weeks, but it worked. Dallas signed him to a new 6 year $90 million dollar deal on September 4th.

Even though the Cowboys went 8-8 last season and missed the playoffs Prescott had what was probably his best season. Prescott threw for 4902 yards and 30 touchdowns; both career highs. He also attempted more passes 596 and completed more passes 388 than any other season.

Prescott may have a good case for expecting the Cowboys to give him a big contract. In four seasons with the Cowboys Prescott has never missed a start and the team hasn’t had a losing record with him as their starting quarterback.

Dallas made a coaching change after last season; so this will be the first time in his career that he’ll have to learn a new offense, but he’s going into an offense of a head coach that has a proven track record of having a quality offense in Mike McCarthy. If last season showed that Prescott was on the upswing in his career his numbers might improve even more than they did last season under McCarthy.

It’s difficult to determine what the value of a quarterback is because there’s so much around them that decides if they’re going to be successful or not. Somehow the Cowboys are going to have to try and figure out where Prescott fits salary wise among those quarterbacks.

With Prescott’s situation in flux this may explain why the Cowboys went out and signed veteran Andy Dalton to be Prescott’s back up. If Prescott does make the decision to hold out Dalton gives them a proven NFL quarterback who has started in the NFL. If the Cowboys wouldn’t of signed Dalton they’d be looking at Cooper Rush as their starting quarterback.

Weigh in here. What do you think happens between Prescott and the Cowboys. Does he get a new contract? Does he end up playing this coming season under the franchise tag? Or does he hold out?

The Cowboys should be a contender in the NFC East and some people may see them as the favorite to win that division. The Cowboys are looked at as a 20-1 gamble to win the Super Bowl. That gives them the 6th best odds to win the Super Bowl overall and they’re the 4th best pick in the NFC.

The New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and San Francisco 49ers are the teams that are ahead of the Cowboys odds wise. All three of those teams odds are set at 12-1.

The starting line up for tomorrow’s NASCAR race The Real Heroes 400 at Darlington Raceway has been set.

Brad Keslowski will start on the pole. He’ll be joined by Alex Bowman on the front row. Matt DiBenedetto and Kyle Busch will start in the second row.

Now NASCAR didn’t hold qualifying for this race. The line up for this race was done by random draw. The draw aired live on Fox Sports 1 Race Hub show. Here’s how the draw was structured. Positions 1 thru 12 where determined by a random draw from charter teams in those positions in team owner points. Positions 13 thru 24 where done by a random draw among charter teams in those positions in owner points. Positions 25 thru 36 where done by a random draw among charter teams in those positions in owner points. While positions 37, 38, 39 and 40 will be filled out by open; non-chartered teams in order of owner points.

This will be the first Monster Energy Series NASCAR race since March 8th. If you’re interested in watching this race it will air live on Fox at 2:30 p.m. Central time.

I hope you’ve been listening to the Sports Time Radio podcast. It airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com; so check it out over there, but if you miss it there head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want to.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Burketime

Lets call it Wednesday

Posted: May 13, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, baseball, NASCAR, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

We’ve waited patiently for sports to return and finally on Sunday we’re going to get one of our sports back. NASCAR returns this Sunday at Darlington Raceway.

Now there will be no fans in the stands for this race or for any race in the foreseeable future, but these races still count in the standings. Now be honest with me; if or when you watch a NASCAR race do you notice the fans?

The NASCAR season was just four weeks old when it was shutdown due to the Covid-19 outbreak; so lets’ recap.

Joey Logano has two wins while Alex Bowman and Denny Hamlin each have a win. You shouldn’t be surprised that Logano was also the points leader with those two early season wins. Kevin Harvick was 2nd in points with Bowman 3rd, Chase Elliott in 4th and Hamlin rounded out the Top 5.

Now I myself am a NASCAR and while I understand that there are a lot of people who don’t enjoy the sport and see it as cars just going around in a circle, but don’t try to say that these drivers aren’t athletes. Now I doubt that any of the drivers I just mentioned in the Top 5 could dunk a basketball, hit a 100 mile per hour fastball, catch or throw a touchdown pass or score a goal on skates and that’s fair. Now just go ahead and flip the script. How many NBA, MLB, NFL or NHL players could drive a car going close to or over 200 miles per hour?

Now if you are a NASCAR fan get ready to have these race come at you fast and furious. Not only will there be a NASCAR race at Darlington on Sunday, but they’ll be back there on Wednesday May 20th for a night race. Then the NASCAR series moves to Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday May 24th for the Coca-Cola 600. Then they’ll stay at Charlotte Motor Speedway for another Wednesday race on May 27th. The series gets a little bit back to normal as the series shifts to the Kansas Speedway on Sunday May 31st for the Kansas 400. The races then go back to a week to week event as the next scheduled race is the FireKeepers Casino 400 on June 7th at the Michigan International Speedway.

So we’re going to get five NASCAR races in 15 days and a total of six NASCAR races in 22 days before their season returns to a more normal schedule.

Darlington will be an interesting track for the drivers to come back to. It’s called “the Lady in Black” or the Track too tough to Tame”. What helps give it these nicknames is the shape of the track as it’s more of an oval configuration than any other track on the NASCAR circuit. Humorously the story goes that one of the reasons the track got this shape was it had to be configured around a minnow pond at one end that the owner refused to move. That leads to the track having different banking. It’s 25 degrees in Turn 1 & 2, but it’s 23 degrees in turns 3 & 4. This can make t difficult for teams to set up the car for this track.

Darlington is always a fun race to watch and I’d like to know if you’ll be watching? and do you think that this race will get a better television ratings than it normally would since it’s the first sporting event returning?

Now the other sport that has suggested a plan for starting it’s season has been Major League Baseball. The owners have sent a proposal to the Players Union for approval to get this season in.

Now like you I’m not really interested on if the owners are trying to sneak anything past the players in this proposal. All I want to know is when the season is going to start and how many games are they going to play.

Well what I’ve heard and none of this is official is that the teams would return to spring training in mid-June with the season starting the weekend of July 4th. What I’ve seen is that the season will be 82 games long. There where a couple of other things that I thought where interesting that are suppose to be in this proposal. The playoffs would expand from 10 to 14 teams and the DH would become universal. I didn’t hear how big the major league roster would be, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they ended up being 29 players which was discussed earlier.

Like I mentioned this isn’t official as the players and the players union have to agree on this and I’m sure there will be some bantering back and forth before an actual deal gets done, but I was just happy to hear then talking about the baseball season actually starting.

I’m under the impression that once the National League starts using the DH that it’s going to become a permanent fixture in baseball. There was already a lot of talk about it becoming permanent in the next collective bargaining agreement; so maybe the National League will just get started on using it a couple of seasons earlier than planned.

Let me know what you think of the DH being used in not only this shortened season, but also how or what you think about the DH becoming permanent throughout baseball. Is it or will it be good or bad for the game?

Now I’m not a big fan of just an 82 games schedule. I would’ve liked to seen them try to play over 100 games. I don’t believe that 82 games is going to be enough to find out who the best team actually. Now maybe the expanded playoffs will help that situation play out, but I’m not sure that whoever is crowned World Series champion at the end of this shortened season can actually say they where the best team in baseball.

Please share your thoughts with me about the 82 game season. Do you like it? Or would you have like to see them come up with a different number? Or do you think they should’ve just cancelled this season?

Don’t forget to check on the Sports Time Radio podcast. Sadly we’ve missed quite a few podcasts due to me getting sick, but when we’re on check out BlogTalkRadio.com for the live podcast. The podcast also airs on TuneIn.com; so if you miss it look for us there.

Remember to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: May 9, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

As cities and states try to get the way of life people are use to back up and running all sports organizations are trying t get their league up and running. Some states have started to reopen businesses that had been closed down due to the pandemic and along with those businesses reopening the NBA has decided to open up it’s facilities to it’s players.

Now there are some new guidelines put in place by the NBA that players and team employees will have to follow. No more than four players would be permitted at a facility at any one time. No head or assistant coaches could participate. Players remain prohibited from using non-team facilities such as public health clubs, fitness centers or gyms. Group activity remains prohibited, including practices or scrimmages. Also lifting weights with a spotter will be prohibited if it forces the player to be within 12 feet of a staffer. Players in team facilities must wear facemasks at all times except during physical activity. Team staffers must also stay 12 feet away from them. The NBA will allow a total of six assistant or player development coaches to supervise these works. Head coaches will not be allowed.

The NBA’s decision to reopen practice facilities was based on Georgia’s plan to slowly reopen its economy. It seemed as players where considered traveling there to facilitate workouts in ways the NBA considered unsafe. The Atlanta Hawks are Georgia’s only NBA team, but they’ve decided to not open their facilities on May 1st.

There was an National Basketball Players Association phone call with it’s players and they invited commissioner Adam Silver to join the call and address the players. There was an audio taped of the one hour long call released.

The NBPA’s executive director Michele Roberts and NBPA president Chris Paul as well as several players asked commissioner Silver questions during the conversation.

The players asked commissioner some difficult questions including how future seasons would be affected and the financial realities of future salary caps and basketball related income. Commissioner Silver also had to handle some difficult questions about how the league would handle players safety.

It was mentioned that returning to play this season at one or two potential sites including Orlando and Las Vegas made the most sense. There was also no mention on if fans would be in attendance for these games.

The commissioner expressed a desire that the NBA complete its season with a traditional playoff structure that includes seven-game series in each round, but he left open the possibility of play in tournaments to accommodate more teams in resumption of a shortened season. Silver also told players that the start of next season could be pushed until December, regardless of whether this season was completed.

Commissioner Silver discussed how the CBA wasn’t built for a pandemic and were issues that needed to be collectively bargained with the NBPA. Among those issues Silver mentioned how future basketball related income and salary caps would be affected by massive decreases in revenue.

As for returning to play this season; Silver indicated discussions around training camp length in the resumption of the season centered on a minimum of three weeks. Silver said the NBA’s hope would be that players who test positive for Covid-19 won’t require shutting down a team or season, but only the removal of a player amid persistent testing of those who had come into contact with him.

It was reported by ESPN that the NBA estimates it would need in the neighborhood of 15,000 tests to resume and complete its season.

Now I’ve said all along that the NBA and the NHL should either end these seasons as is or come back when it’s safe and go right into the playoffs. Something commissioner Silver said that caught my attention and I believe it’s the biggest reason these leagues don’t want to give up these regular season games. Commissioner Silver mentioned that 40% of the NBA’s revenue comes from money built around regular season and playoff games being played in the arenas.

That would be a large chunk of money for the NBA to walk away from and you know they’re going to do everything in their power to not have to let that cash go.

What would you like to see? Are you interested in the NBA coming back and finishing the regular season? Or would you like to see them go right into some type of playoff format?

With no games being played and as of right now there are none on the schedule it’s no surprise that these leagues are trying to find a way to save money.

Major League Baseball is going to save itself a little bit of money by cutting the MLB Draft from 40 rounds to 5 rounds.

MLB an the Major League Baseball Players Association have been in discussion about shorten the draft for weeks. The MLBPA had agreed to the 5 round draft, but they where pushing for MLB to do a 10 round draft. The draft usually consists of 40 rounds, but the owners wanted to limit the number of rounds to help cut down on spending during the coronavirus shutdown.

This move will save each team a little less than $1 million dollars and apparently there are quite a few people unhappy about this move. Of course none of these people are paying the bills for these teams and with everything going on it helps each team to save where they can even if it’s looked at as a small amount by people.

While it has to be disappointing for those players who would’ve been drafted in those later rounds it might turn out to be a better situation for them.

Once a player goes undrafted he’ll be allowed to sign with any team instead of just the one team that drafted him. Now while it might not be ideal it will give that player the right to try and sign with a team where he think he fits the best. This may give those players a chance to find a team where they might develop quicker instead of being drafted by a team that might have a long term solution at the position that drafted player plays.

Please let me know how you feel about MLB making this change to the draft. Also let me know if you feel this is good or bad for those players that won’t get drafted.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen at your leisure.

You can also look me up on Twitter @Burketime

 

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: May 6, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

I’m sure that I wasn’t the only one who was surprised that when the NFL draft was over Andy Dalton was still a member of the Cincinnati Bengals. It’s been clear since the Bengals ended up with the #1 pick in the draft that Dalton’s career with the Bengals was over.

There weren’t a ton of quarterback openings this off season, but it seemed like Dalton might be able to find himself a starting job somewhere, but what would the Bengals want for him. It didn’t seem that there where any real serious rumors about where Dalton might end up, but there was some talk here and there.

In the end you have to wonder if the Bengals held out for too much or if they seriously considered hanging onto Dalton as a back up and to maybe show Joe Burrow the ropes. I guess will never know what Cincinnati was thinking when it came to Dalton.

In the end it turned out that the Bengals ended up getting nothing for Dalton and they just ended up releasing him.

Not surprisingly it didn’t take Dalton to long to find work. The Dallas cowboys signed Dalton to a reported one year $3 million dollar deal. It’s been reported that with incentives Dalton’s deal could reach $7 million dollars.

Obviously it’s clear that Dak Prescott is the Cowboys starting quarterback, but remember Prescott has only been offered the franchise tag; so could the signing of Dalton be looked at as a kind of leverage play by the Cowboys. A lot of people don’t see this as the case. To them it’s just seen as the Cowboys trying to get themselves a highly experience quarterback to back up Prescott. With all of their pieces Dallas looks like a Super Bowl contender; so it wouldn’t be a bad idea if they had what would be looked at as a high quality back up quarterback just in case Prescott was to get injured or in the event that he might possibly hold out.

It appears at least in the media that the talks between Prescott and the Cowboys are going well on a new contract, but as you know that could change rather quickly. Not everyone is sold on Prescott being able to lead the Cowboys to a Super Bowl, but to be fair Prescott has started all 64 games since being drafted by the Cowboys in 2016. Dallas is 40-24 with Prescott as their starting quarterback and they’ve never had a losing season with him under center, but they where 8-8 last season.

Since Prescott is a mobile quarterback and not afraid to run the football when he has to it won’t hurt the Cowboys to have a back up quarterback that has made 133 starts in the NFL and has played in 4 playoff games.

The Cowboys also have Cooper Rush who’s been Prescott’s back up for the last three seasons, but hasn’t had to play much. Rush has appeared in 5 games over those three seasons and hasn’t thrown a pass in an NFL regular season game since 2017.

Rush is due to make $2.1 million dollars this season and even though the Cowboys are close to the salary cap they should be able to keep Rush on their roster as the #3 quarterback.

I’m sure you’ve heard at some point and time that the life span of an NFL running backs career is very short. While there are quarterbacks out there that are talking about playing until they’re 45 years old if  running back can get four or five quality seasons in it’s looked at as a successful career. I guess Frank Gore is the exception to this rule.

Gore will be entering his 16th season as an NFL running back as a member of the New York Jets.

Gore will join the Jets as Le’Veon Bell’s back up and will be reunited with Jets head coach Adam Gase. Gore played for Gase in 2018 with the Miami Dolphins and Gase was also with the San Francisco 49ers as an offensive assistant when Gore played there. Apparently Gase tried to get Gore to sign with the Jets last off season, but instead Gore ended up signing with the Buffalo Bills.

Gore played in all 16 games for the Bills last season; starting 8 of them. Gore ran for a career low 599 yards and averaged a career low 3.6 yards per carry, but he still played a significant role in the Bills offense.

Gore is currently 3rd on the all time rushing list with 15,347 yards. Gore is 1379 yards behind Walter Payton for the #2 spot on the all time rushing leaders list; so it’s doubtful he’ll be catching him this season. Gore is also 3rd on the all time list for rushing attempts. He’s carried the football 3548 times in his NFL career so far and while he’ll add to that total this season it’s doubtful that he’ll get the 291 carries required to pass Payton on that list either.

At the end of the 2019 season Gore had indicated that he wanted to play this coming  season, but at 36 soon to be 37 years old it was unclear if a team would have any interest in Gore. It looks like Gore will get his wish to play in 2020, but is it possible that Gore continues to defy logic and comes back for the 2021 season?

As long as Bell stays healthy Gore will have a very limited role with the Jets, but it’s good that he’s getting a chance to play next season. Bell did miss one game last season; so maybe Gore will get an opportunity here and there to put up some solid rushing numbers with the Jets.

How do you think Gore will end up doing with the Jets this coming season?

We’re still putting up episode of the Sports Time Radio podcast, but unfortunately we’ve had to skip a few here and there due to my illness. Hopefully soon will be back to doing the podcast five days a week. Checkout BlogTalkRadio.com for the podcast and don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to whenever you want at TuneIn.com.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Since there aren’t any sports being played right now I like to flip through article titles online and see if anything catches my attention. This kind of helps me keep up with what’s going on in sports without having to read every single article out there.

While flipping through articles yesterday I ran into one that caught my attention and while I didn’t go through and read the entire thing I  enough of it to get the idea of the article and wonder why.

This article went on to explain that the NHL is planning on returning and finish it’s regular season and playoff for this season. This didn’t make ay sense to me, but as I continued looking into this it was also said that the NHL would be willing to push back the start of next season to finish this one. This article also mentioned that the NHL would have no problems playing games in July or August if they had to. Now I know that the playoffs don’t generally end into early June, but imagine regular season games in July or August.

Once I saw the story in the NHL I went through to see if I could find any new on what the NBA might be planning. I didn’t see anything new on how the NBA might try and finish out it’s regular season and playoffs, but I did see that the NBA has decided to postpone the draft lottery and scouting combine. The actually draft itself had already been moved back until late June.

With the NBA making these moves and postponements it makes me think that the NBA is planning to do the same thing that the NHL is going to do and they’ll try to play the rest of their regular season games as well the playoffs.

Now I don’t think I would have any issues if the NHL and the NBA came back and went right into the playoffs. I could fully understand each league wanting to be able to crown a champion, but at first I didn’t understand why they’d want to come back and play regular season games.

Then it hit me; there’s only one reason that the NHL and the NBA would want to come back and play regular season games; they want that television money. Remember the NBA has a very lucrative deal with ESPN and TNT to televise their regular season and playoff games and while I’m sure that the NHL’s deal with NBA isn’t quite as lucrative I’m sure they’d like to get whatever money they have coming in that contract.

You could also throw Major League Baseball into this mix as they’ve already said that they’re planning on playing as many regular season games as possible. Why would they want to do that: television money.

At least when they start playing MLB games again it will actually be baseball season, but how many people are going to be interested in watching NHL and NBA games in the summer or possibly even in the fall.

To be fair if you’re the first league to come back and start playing games you’d probably draw huge ratings. With as hard up as people are to watch sports I’m sure they’d take anything new to watch. Just look at how well the NFL draft just did in the ratings. Now imagine how well and actually live sporting event would do in the ratings. To be honest I’d probably even tune into an NBA game just to watch sports.

I would really like to get your opinion on this. Would you watch an NHL or NBA regular season game if they came back to play them in July or August? Would it make you more interested to watch these games if your favorite team was in the running to possibly win the title?

Do you like the idea of the NHL and NBA coming back to play regular season games? Or would you like to see them come back and go directly into the playoffs? Or at this point would you like to see hem just end their seasons with no champions and move onto next season?

I would be very interested in what you’d like to see the NHL and NBA do. As I mentioned before I wouldn’t have any issues if they came back and went straight into the playoffs, but I have no interest in any NHL or NBA regular games being played.

As we’re talking about sports returning it looks as though NASCAR will be back on May 17th. NASCAR is planning on running this 400 mile race at Darlington Speedway in South Carolina with no fans.

What may be even more interesting about this is NASCAR is planning on this being the first race of 11 races that they’ll run in seven days. Yes, you read that right; 11 races in seven days.

These races will take place at two different tracks. Darlington Speedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina.

NASCAR has decided to run races here because South Carolina has relaxed coronavirus restrictions and Charlotte, North Carolina; is following suit.

After the May 17th race the NASCAR’s schedule includes a 200-mile Xfinity Series race at Darlington Raceway on May 19 and a 500 kilometer contest at the South Carolina track the following night. NASCAR will then shift to Charlotte for a 600 mile Cup Series race on May 24; with a 300 mile Xfinity Series competition the following day. A 200 mile Gander Trucks race on May 26 and a 500 kilometer race at Charlotte Motor Speedway the next night.

NASCAR, which did not announce any dates past May 27, but it intends to run a full 36 race NASCAR Cup Series slate this year. It also plans to keep its 10 race postseason format and tracks involved unchanged.

Do you like this idea NASCAR has come up with? I guess more importantly; will you be watching any or all of these races?

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast. The podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live all you have to do is head over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you want to.

Don’t forget that you can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: April 29, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

I asked you on Saturday if you watched the NFL draft and apparently you did. On Thursday the draft won all three hours of the television time it was on. It did slowly decline through the hours, but that was to be expected. Don’t forget that this was just the 1st round of the draft.

Friday night of the draft didn’t do as well as Thursday night, but that’s to be expected since there are a lot of people who just want to know who their favorite team is picking in the 1st round. While the draft didn’t dominate the television ratings like it did on Thursday it still posted solid numbers and finished second for the night. CBS was the network that beat out the draft and to be fair they didn’t beat it by that much.

I did watch all of the first two days of draft coverage and while I did tune in for quite a bit of the Saturdays coverage I found myself flipping channels. Since I’m not a huge college football fan by the time they got into the later rounds I didn’t know who most of the player being picked where and that contributed to me losing interest.

Humorously the one thing I forgot that I don’t like about the NFL draft is the actual coverage itself. Now this year was a completely different animal with it being a virtual draft, but the coverage ESPN provide was sub-par at best. I got the impression that they try to stretch every pick out because they have so much television time to fill and it becomes tedious to watch.

I also did notice this year more than any other year that ESPN really seemed to play up any type of tragedy or other type of event like that the drafted player had to over come. I’m not sure if they where trying to get sympathy for that player or if they where just trying to show that they overcame some type of hardship in their life. It just seemed odd to me that this was the part of certain players life that they decided to highlight.

They other thing that  heard over and over before the draft was how many problems that could come up since this was a virtual draft and everything was going to be done with computers. Oddly it seemed that the only people who had issues with this set up was the ESPN personalities themselves. It seemed like time after time there was a delay as we waited for an ESPN personality to start talking. It was clear that the teams didn’t have any issues making their picks and the commissioner Roger Goodell didn’t appear to have any trouble announcing the picks, but when they went back to the ESPN desk it seemed like there was always a delay before they started talking. I would’ve thought that the network covering the event would’ve been better equipped to televise it.

How did you feel about the virtual draft and it’s coverage? There’s been talk of the NFL involving a virtual aspect to every draft; of course we don’t know what that would be just yet. Would this be something you’d like to see the NFL do?

Now days after the draft everyone looks back an tries to figure out who had the best draft even though it’s really not possible to do that. You just never know how a college player is going to do as he moves up to the next level. Of course there are a lot of people who get paid a lot of money to do that, but I’m not one of them; so I’m not going to try to tell you who had the best draft.

The one thing I can share with you about the draft is what surprised me in the draft. The New England Patriots made 10 picks in this past draft and none of them was a quarterback. New England used their first three draft picks on defensive players. They used their 4th and 5th draft picks on tight ends before taking a kicker with that 6th pick. Their 7th and 8th picks where used on offensive lineman. The 9th picks the patriots made was back on the defensive side before they wrapped up their draft by picking a Center.

Now since we’re not inside the Patriots draft process we don’t know if they where ever planning on drafting a quarterback or if the draft just possibly didn’t fall their way and they missed out on a quarterback they wanted. We also don’t know if New England tried to move up in the draft to try and select a quarterback. All we know is when the draft was all said and done the Patriots didn’t end up drafting a quarterback.

That meant that after the draft the Patriots had two quarterbacks on their roster; Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer. Now after the draft the New England did sign two undrafted free agent quarterbacks.

J’Mar Smith and Brian Lewerke where the two quarterbacks the Patriots signed. Smith played at Louisiana Tech while Lewerke played at Michigan State. Smith  threw for 2,977 yards; 18 touchdowns with only 5 interceptions in last season at Louisiana Tech with a 64.3 completion percentage. Lewerke threw for 3,079 yards and 17 TDs in at Michigan State, but he also tossed 13 interceptions.

Smith is a multi-sport athlete and was actually drafted by the San Diego Padres out of high school in the 2015 MLB Draft. However, he decided not to sign but played both baseball and football at Lousiana Tech. Interestingly his father Kenny also played for the Patriots. He was a defensive lineman in the 2000s, but never played a game for New England.

Lewerke is the only player in Michigan State history to throw for 8,000-plus yards and to also rush for 1,000-plus yards, finishing with 8,293 passing and 1,255 rushing yards in his collegiate career.

Will one of these quarterback end up making the Patriots roster as the 3rd quarterback? I guess will have to wait and see.

Don’t forget to check out the Sports Time radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com. The podcast is also available at TuneIn.com.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime