Archive for the ‘basketball’ Category

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: August 5, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, football, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

It’s the start of August and there are plenty of sports on television for fans to watch and while you’d think it’s a good thing I’m not totally sure it is. Now normally this is just baseball season with sports fans getting ready for football, but with the pandemic we also have the NHL and the NBA playing. This can make things difficult to not only watch, but to keep up with. Are you keeping up? I’m not.

As I’ve mentioned many times I don’t enjoy what the NBA has turned into and all I really do is flip on a game to get a score and then I move on. Watching professional basketball players stand around at the 3-point line and shoot doesn’t interest me. I’m also not interested in watching a guy dunk when he has to travel to do it. I thought that’s what the dunk contest was for. It’s just so boring for me to watch a player drive the lane and either dunk or throw the basketball out to the 3-point line so one of his teammates can launch a 3-pointer. I’m not even going to go into defense in the NBA mostly because it’s nonexistent and if a player seems to try to play defense he’ll be called for a foul. I know that the NBA has lots of fans, but I’m just not one of them.

As for the NHL I guess it’s just the fact that it’s August and they should be preparing for next season not just starting the playoffs. I’m sure the fact that it’s summer and not cold and snowy out like I picture the weather being outside when the NHL plays. I’ve tried multiple times to sit down and watch one of these NHL playoff games, but it just doesn’t hold my attention for more than a few minutes. Maybe I’ll find myself more interested as teams get eliminated, but I’m not actually sure if that will happen or not. at least I have a local team to root for in the NHL playoffs, but who knows if the Chicago Blackhawks will even get out of this play in round or whatever they’re calling it. I think if the Blackhawks could get on a run in these playoffs that might peak my interest, but it just seems weird to me to watch playoff hockey in August.

I don’t believe that either the NBA or the NHL has mentioned when they might try to get what would be their 2020-21 season started. There was some talk about the NBA waiting until Christmas day to open their season, but I haven’t heard any rumors about what the NHL might do.

When the next season finally does open for the NHL and the NBA will they allow the players to travel or will they attempt to do another “bubble” type set up. Would either league try to play a full schedule of games next season? There’s no doubt that both the NHL and the NBA seasons for what would’ve been 2020-21 is going to start late. Will either league try to pay a full 82 game schedule? I’m not sure if either league would be willing to try to do that, but if not what number of games would they come up with? Would they set it up along the lines that Major League Baseball did and have teams play mostly within their division. With the geography of the NHL and the NBA it might be best if they have team just play against conference opponents. Of course the NBA would have to figure out what to do with the Memphis Grizzlies since they are in the Western Conference. The Grizzlies ended up in the Western Conference because when they entered the NBA they played in Vancouver.

What do you think about next season. How many games do you think that the NHL or the NBA might try to play next season?

Obviously I’m not keeping up with the restarted NBA season, but I don’t believe that they’ve even started their playoffs yet. How long is this NBA season going to go? I get that they brought the league back because they wanted to get their hands on as much television and sponsorship money as they could, but it seems ridiculous that they’re still having what would be considered regular season games. At least the NHL is in some sort of playoff situation.

On the plus side when it comes to the NHL and the NBA it seems as though their “bubble” set up is working as I don’t believe either league has reported a positive Covid-19 test since they’ve been playing in the “bubble”. Let’s hope that continues and neither league has to deal with any kind of virus outbreak like MLB has had to. Don’t forget that the NHL has two “bubble” set ups with no positive Covid-19 tests.

MLB had to deal with another team dealing with a Covid-19 outbreak. This time it was the St. Louis Cardinals. I believe the Cardinals ended up with 13 total members of their traveling party testing positive for the Covid-19 virus.

Yesterday St. Louis placed Paul DeJong, Junior Fernandez, Kodi Whitley, Edmundo Sosa, Rangel Ravelo and Yader Molina on the IL. All players have tested positive for Covid-19. Carlos Martinez was also added to the IL yesterday, but his injury was listed as undisclosed.

Due to this outbreak the Cardinals have canceled a four game series in Milwaukee against the Brewers as well as a four game series in Detroit against the Tigers. Even though that series was in Detroit the Cardinals where scheduled to be the home team in two of those games. Major League Baseball also went ahead and canceled the Cardinals game against the Chicago White Sox on August 13th that was scheduled to be played at Field of Dreams in Iowa. As long as the Cardinals can clear Covid-19 testing they’ll restart their season this Friday as they host the Chicago Cubs for the start of a three game series.

The Sports Time Radio podcast airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the live edition of the podcast just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you’d like.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Earlier this week the National Football League announced that they would be cutting their pre-season schedule to 2 games. With everything going on in the world today that seemed like a good idea and let’s face it all the NFL pre-season isn’t any fun to watch. After this announcement the National Football League Players Association held a vote and what should come as no surprise to anyone they want something different than what the NFL just announced. The NFLPA wants no pre-season this year. Now of course getting the NFL owners and the NFLPA to agree on something is incredibly difficult. I’m sure they’d argue over what color the grass was if you asked them. This shouldn’t be too big of a stumbling point as their has to be some sort of pre-season and I’m sure the NFLPA is just using this as a negotiating tactic.

The one thing that we have to remember is even though these are the sports we love to a lot of owners and players it’s just a business and they’re going to try and use everything and anything they can as leverage. Don’t forget that when baseball was going through their negotiations the Major League Baseball owners tried to use these negotiations to recoup some of the things they gave up in the last collective bargaining agreement. To be fair the Major League Baseball Players Association was any better as they wouldn’t budge off of the players getting 100% of there prorated money.

Unfortunately for fans they’re the ones that pay the price. Baseball could’ve easily given us more than this 60 game embarrassment of a season if the owners would’ve started with a decent opening proposal and the players association had negotiated in good faith on their side. Of course neither side could do that as one of them had to feel like they where getting the upper hand in the negotiations and neither side wanted to look weak with the actual collective bargaining expiring after the 2021 season.

In the end who suffers; the fans. I haven’t seen any team announce that they’ll  lowering ticket prices to help out their fans that may have gotten laid off or completely lost their jobs during the pandemic. It was also made very clear that the one thing the players wanted to make sure of in those negotiations was that they got all of their money. Maybe it’s a good thing that they’ll have to start playing these games without fans.

The toughest part about this entire thing is that no matter what these leagues do to their fans they’re always going to come back. I’m not sure why that is though. Maybe it’s just a pure love for a sport or sports in general, but they’ll come back. Or will they?

I’ve mentioned over and over on the Sports Time Radio podcast that I was done with baseball for the 2020 season and I would see them for spring training in 2021. Well it didn’t take long for me to soften on that stance and say that I might watch some games this year. I can pretty much tell myself anything I want, but once the games return I’ll be in front of the television watching whatever game I can get. How about you?

just last ight I had a good friend of mine explain to me how he was so upset with the NFL that he was done being a fan and he didn’t care about how many pre-season games they played or if they played at all. Now he’s a life long fan and I’m not sure what actually set him off, but he had a list of complaints and had some very good points. Of course in the end when the kickoff the football he’ll be there watching in some form.

I’m sure there are fans of the NBA and the NHL that have said they won’t be watching the restart of those leagues once they get up and running, but we know that’s not going to be the case. I’m thinking that maybe one or two out of every ten fans that say they’re not going to watch might actually stick to that statement.

So fill me in on where you stand. Are you like me and you have or had a strong stance at one point, but it’s beginning to weaken? Or are you staying strong and you’re going to hold the line and not watch whatever sport it is you’re upset with when they start play? If you are thinking that you won’t be watching when your favorite sport gets up and running will it be for the entire season or just a short break from the game? Also if you’re going to stay away from the game will you be strong enough to do it for the entire season? Then what do you do if your favorite team makes a run for the championship; do you get back onboard? or do you still manage to stay away? Would you actually miss out on your favorite team winning a championship? Even though it might be a little impure do to the Covid-19 situation.

Who knew that there was so much to think about and try to process when you’re a true fan of a team or a sport.

I understand that there where a lot of people up in arms yesterday when MLB announced that they had 31 people test positive for Covid-19. There was even quite a bit of talk about not restarting the season, but I think we know that’s not going to happen even if it is just 60 games.

Now I can completely understand that a positive test is something that people should have concerns about, but there are a couple of things you have to think about. Did you honestly think there would be no positive tests and while the mainstream media just threw the number 31 out there the other way you can look at it is that 1.2% of the people MLB tested came back positive. Wouldn’t that have sounded like a much better number if it had just been reported that way.

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

Also feel free to look me up on Twitter I’m @Burketime

 

How was your week

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

With the big spike in positive Covid-19 test in Florida recently you have to wonder if the restart to the NBA season is in jeopardy. It seems as though the league itself isn’t too concerned and they’re ready to follow the plan they have in place, but you have to wonder if and ho many players have questions.

As we know right now there are two players Avery Bradley of the Los Angeles Lakers and Willie Cauley-Stein of the Dallas Mavericks who have notified their teams and the league that they’ll be skipping the remainder of the season. The NBA stated quite a while ago that there would be no penalty for players that didn’t want to play in these with the exception of a loss of salary.

Nothing against Bradley or Cauley-Stein, but neither is a big name in the NBA and even though Bradley had found his way into the Lakers stating line up neither player will be a big loss for their respective teams. The question now is: could we see a marquee player opt out of going to Orlando for these games?

Kevin Durant now of the Brooklyn Nets did come out and say that if he was healthy he wouldn’t play in these games, but I’m not sure how much I believe that statement. this is pretty easy to say when you know that you’re not capable of playing in these games anyway. Durant missed the entire 2019-20 season with an Achilles injury and he and the Nets have decided to hold him out of the restarted season. There’s also a possibility that Durant is being a good teammate. Remember his Nets teammate Kyrie Irving was trying to rally support for NBA players to skip the restarted season in Florida. Who better to help out you cause than one of the top players in the NBA.

Durant is a two time NBA champion and he also won MVP in both of those finals series; he has also won the league MVP for the 2013-14 season. I think a healthy Durant would be one of the first guys ready to get the season restarted. There where also quite a few people who thought that Durant was the best player in the NBA even better than LeBron James before he got injured and I’m not sure that someone with his kind of talent would actually consider sitting out. Add in the fact that a returning Durant would make the Nets a serious title contender coming out of the Eastern Conference. Would he really walk away from a chance to win another NBA championship?

While I’m not buying the Durant story their is a player who is a big key to his teams success that has been rumored to be considering skipping the games in Orlando and that player is Lou Williams of the Los Angeles Clippers.

Williams might not have the name value as a player like Durant or Irving does, but he is a huge part of what has made the Clippers successful this season. Williams is one of if  not the best sixth man in the NBA. He’s played in 60 games for the Clippers this season coming off the bench in 52 f those games. He averages 18.7 points per game while playing an average of a little over 29 minutes per game. Williams also hands out also averages 5.7 assists per game and shoots 36.3% from behind the 3-point line. The Clippers may be looked at as Kawhi Leonard’s team with Paul George being the second best player on the team, but if they where to lose Williams their chances of winning the NBA title would take a huge blow.

Heading back into the restart of the season the Clippers are the #2 seed in the Western Conference and they’re looked at as the Lakers biggest obstacle to the NBA Finals. he Clippers actually kick off the restart of the NBA season against the Lakers on July 30th, but it looks like we’ll have to wait and see if Williams will be joining his teammates for that games and the remainder of the NBA season.

The NBA released it’s schedule for the restart of the season last night and as I mentioned the Clippers vs. the Lakers is the late game on July 30th. The first game that officially restarts the NBA season is the Utah Jazz vs. the New Orleans Pelicans. As you can see the NBA ha set their return up perfectly for television. In the first game the fans will get to see Zion Williamson and then in the night cap you get the Lakers against their biggest challenger in the Western Conference the Clippers. There’s absolutely k no way that this wasn’t planned, but I’m sure that TNT who will be airing these games on their network is thrilled with these two games.

July 30th gets the NBA season restarted with just those two games, but on July 31st there are six games ready for tip off. You’ll be able to watch the Memphis Grizzlies vs. the Portland Trailblazers on NBATV while ESPN has two games that night. They start off with the Boston Celtics vs. the Milwaukee Buck while the second game features the Houston Rockets vs. the Dallas Mavericks. Interestingly there are five games scheduled for August 1st and four of them will be televised by ESPN; so if you’re a fan of the NBA their are going to be plenty of games for you to watch.

It look like the NBA is set and ready to return; are you excited? Or should the NBA and it’s players have concerns about the recent upswing in positive test for Covid-19 in Florida? Let’s hope that the virus takes a down turn in the time we have now and the NBA season restarting, but will have to see how that plays out.

Don’t forget that you can listen to the Sports Time radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if for some reason you miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen whenever you choose to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: June 24, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, hockey, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Once the Covid-19 pandemic shutdown sports all of the fans have been wondering when they would be returning. Now the big three sports have all announced their plans to return, but the National Hockey League was first and we haven’t heard much from them since, but yesterday there was some news.

While the National Basketball Association plans on holding all of it’s game in one place that they describe as a ‘bubble” the NHL is looking for two what they’re calling “hub” cities to play their games in. The NHL had been considering eight cities to host games, but yesterday the list was cut to six cities.

Las Vegas, Chicago, Los Angeles, Edmonton, Toronto and Vancouver have made the cut so far, with Pittsburgh and Dallas eliminated Tuesday. Columbus was scratched off the list Monday.

The NHL has been hoping to find two cities in different time zones to help with television scheduling. Las Vegas has always been the front runner to be one of the hub cities, but which city will get the other set of games; well it’s wide open.

The NHL is planning on playing the Western Conference playoffs in one city and then have the Eastern Conference playoffs in the other city. It’s currently unclear where the Stanley Cup Finals would be played, but you’d have to think that one of the two hub cities would host it.

Last week the Canadian government told the NHL that they’d be allowed to quarantine internally. This news immediately moved Edmonton, Toronto and Vancouver to the front of the NHL’s hub cities list with Las Vegas. There is a very good chance that the NHL playoffs could be played exclusively in Canadian cities.

Even with the list cut to six possible host cities there has been o date set by the NHL on when they might make an announcement of where they’ll be playing. There was an original July date set for the playoffs to start; so the NHL still has some time to narrow down their list, but hopefully will find out soon.

Where do you think the NHL will end up playing their games? It has seemed that they really want to play in Las Vegas, but like I mentioned those three Canadian cities look really good right now. The other two choices would be big cities; Chicago and Los Angeles. Could they offer the NHL what they’ll need to play their?

As for me I honestly don’t care where the NHL ends up playing these games; I just want to be able to watch hockey again.

As the NBA tries to get the remainder of their season played in Orlando Florida one of the things they mentioned was that if a player was uncomfortable returning to play there would be no penalty with the exception of a dock in pay. It appears as though we have one player right now who’s going to skip the restart of the NBA season.

Avery Bradley has informed his team the Los Angeles Lakers and the league that he will not be taking part in the games in Orlando.

Bradley has three children with his wife Ashley and his oldest son Liam Bradley has a history of struggling to recover from respiratory illnesses. This would make it very unlikely that Liam would be cleared to enter the NBA bubble set up.

Bradley is in first year with the Lakers. He’s played in 49 games this season starting 44 of them. He’s averaging 8.6 points per game and playing just a little over 24 minutes a game. Bradley is also averaging 2.3 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game for the Lakers this season.

With Bradley’s decision the Lakers will be allowed to sign a player to replace him and it appears that J.R. Smith is the front runner for that roster spot.

Smith is 34 years old and hasn’t played in the NBA this season. Smith also played in just 11 games for the Cleveland Cavaliers during the 2018-19 season. Of course since Smith spent time with the Cavaliers during the time LeBron James was their this has given him the upper hand in being signed by the Lakers.

It’s doubtful that Smith would be able to fill the role that Bradley played for the Lakers and it appears as though Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will be the player who takes over Bradley’s starting role. Smith will probably have to settle for a role as a bench player who doesn’t see the flor unless the game is a blow out.

Don’t forget that Bradley was one of the few players that supported Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets idea of not playing when the games restarted.

Sitting out will end up costing Bradley about $650,000 dollars, but don’t feel to bad for him. This season with the Lakers was Bradley’s 10th in the NBA and not counting his salary for the 2019-20 season he’s made a little over $51 million dollars in his career.

Now the question becomes; will any other NBA players follow Bradley lead?

Now it was reported yesterday that Denver Nuggets All-NBA Center Nikola Jokic tested positive for the coronavirus in Serbia and his return to the United States to rejoin his team is temporarily delayed. Now according to the protocol the NBA has in place Jokic will need two negative tests within 24 hours in Serbia before he can receive clearance to travel. Then once he arrives in Denver; he’ll need to undergo a cardiac screening and test negative once for the virus.

NBA teams including the Nuggets are scheduled to return to their team facilities on Tuesday to begin testing protocols before they head to Orlando somewhere between July 7th and 9th to begin training camp. Will Jokic be ready to join his teammates by then? Or is their a chance that he might end up missing games because of his positive test.

Denver’s head coach Mike Malone recently disclosed that he also tested positive for the Corona virus while the league was off due to the pandemic. Malone has since been cleared and will be tested again with his team on Tuesday. Hopefully there will be more issues for Malone.

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live in BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you cam listen whenever you want.

Feel free to look me up on Twitter @Burketime

 

How was your week

Posted: June 13, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, sports, Sports Time Radio

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired; just so, so tired. I’m tired of hearing that the Major League Baseball owners sent another proposal to the players. I’m tired of the players and their union immediately turning that proposal down because it includes a reduction in their salaries. I’m tired of listening the the media be it on television, online or on social media about a team not releasing a statement on the current situation in America. Did they honestly think that a team was going to come out and condone what is going on right now? Do we really need another generic statement from a team? I’m also tired of someone who decided to leave his job because he didn’t agree with what the company he was working for made changes he didn’t agree with getting destroyed for it. The last time I checked we’re allowed to have differing opinions in this country. I can already tell that the new thing I’m going to get tired of very, very quickly is NBA and NHL players complaining about having to go back to work.

Now it looked like the NHL and the NBA had their plans in place to get their seasons restarted, but now some of the players have started to question if they want to or should return. Now I’m not surprised by the NBA players doing this since they’re easily the biggest bunch of crybabies in professional sports.

It’s being reported that the NBA players had a conference call and Kyrie Irving was the main voice on the call. Irving ask if a popular adult beverage would be available to players; before insisting that he had indeed was simply sharing an example and he also wondered what food might be provided to players under league partnerships. I can cut him some slack on the food question, but does the league really need to supply the players with alcohol?

Irving did have some questions of merit. He asked as an injured player if he would be allowed to travel with the his Brooklyn Nets teammates to the bubble in Orlando and if he was allowed to be their would he be counted as one of the 35 allotted people the team can bring. Irving also asked if he did travel with the team if he would be allowed to use the sit in the stands to cheer on his teammates and if he would be allowed to use the sauna for his rehabilitation. These seem to be more legitimate questions than the food and drink ones.

Irving also asked a question about the NBA sponsors on campus, and whether they would be supplying players with products. Now he didn’t go into any specific items, but it made me curious on why players who make quite a bit of money would need handouts from a sponsor.

The call itself lasted about 90 minutes and their where about 100 players in on the call. After asking his question Irving went on to appeal to his fellow NBA players on the call that they should sit out the season and not report to Orlando. There where players on the call that said they’d be willing to sit out the restarted season, but I’m not sure if they would gain anything from it. It is interesting that Irving is the one pushing players to sit out. Remember he won’t be able to play because of a shoulder injury; so it’s an easy decision for him to sit out.

Oddly this also puts Irving on the opposite side of the restart issues with his former teammate LeBron James. James along with quite a few of other NBA superstars have supported the league return to play idea. Now remember it’s easy for a player on a team that has a good chance to win the championship to want to return, but if you’re on a borderline team that is being put into the playoffs by the new system the NBA install for this format you might have some more questions.

After the call it seemed a little unclear if the NBA would be restarting their season, but it appears as though they have enough support from the players to do so including the top players in the game. Now the question is when will the restart the season.

Now Irving has always been seen as a disruptor while in the NBA. Remember he wanted out of Cleveland because he thought that he could be the #1 player on a team and wanted to be out of LeBron’s shadow. He got his wish and was traded to the Boston Celtics, but didn’t win a championship during his two seasons with Boston. Then he took the microphone before the start of one of his two seasons with the Celtics and talked about he planned on staying their long term, but he seem to forget he mentioned that as he backpedaled very quickly from that statement and in the end he left Boston and signed with Brooklyn as a free agent.

I’m curious if Irving is just looking for a fight or if he’s upset or maybe disappointed that he won’t be able to play in Orlando. I’m not sure where he actually fits right now, but we’re talking about a guy who’s won an NBA championship and an All-Star game MVP; plus he’s one of the NBPA’s six elected vice presidents; so that will give him some credibility with some of the other NBA players. I’m not sure if Irving can get enough support to stop the NBA’s plan to restart the season, but he might be able to get a few players to not report to their teams when the time comes. Now the NBA has said that they won’t punish any player who doesn’t want to participate in Orlando and I don’t think it’s the NBA those payers would have to worry about; it would be their teammates that might have the issue with them.

How do you think this works out?

Don’t forget to listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast which airs live on BlogTalkRadio.com. The podcast is also available for you to listen to on TuneIn.com.

I’m also on Twitter if you want to look me up; I’m at @Burketime

Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: June 3, 2020 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, basketball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

As we wait and wait for your beloved sport to return we’ve heard from most of if not all of the leagues with the exception of the NBA which seemed to be more confused than the other leagues on what they might do. Well we finally got some tentative information on what they might do.

There’s a proposal that the NBA will bring before it’s Board of Governors on Thursday for a vote has the season restarting on July 31st. That means the latest the season could end would be October 12th. The details of the plan will likely need to be finalized soon; so they can be presented to the NBPA and see if it’s acceptable to them.

Now if you’re a fan of the NBA don’t make the same mistake I did when the MLB owners sent a proposal to the MLBPA. I started thinking that I was going to see baseball sooner rather than later and now it looks more like I won’t see baseball at all. Of course the NBA has a much better relationship with their players union than MLB has; so hopefully they’ll be able to work this out and will see basketball at the end of July.

Originally the NBA didn’t want to see a restarted season run past Labor day, but obviously with this new proposal they’ve changed their stance on that.

There of course are some questions to be answered like how many teams will be playing come July 31st. Will they be going straight into a playoff format like the NHL has set up or are they going to go back and play what would be considered regular season games. Now if the season does run until early October; when would the draft  be held. Also they’d have to work in when free agency starts and ends. So as you can see there are quite a few questions that still need to be answered before will see an NBA game, but at least it seems like they’re heading in the direction of restarting.

Some of this may clear itself up as there have been some reports that the NBA would be willing to push the start of the 2020-21 season back until Christmas day. Normally the NBA starts their regular season right around Halloween, but that wouldn’t be much down time between the end of the 2019-20 season and the start of the 2020-21 season. Plus it also adds a couple of months to the chance that they might be able to have fans in attendance for the start of the 2020-21 season. The NBA likely won’t be in any rush to begin of the 2020-21 season until states have lifted bans on large gatherings; at least to some extent.

As I’m sure you know I’m not the biggest fan of NBA basketball and I’m probably not going to change my viewing habits when they finally return, but I’m more interested to know what you think. Will you be tuning in more, less or the same when the NBA makes it return.

There was some sad NBA news yesterday as it was announced that former NBA star player, coach and executive Wes Unseld passed away at the age of 74. According to his family Unseld series of health issues, most recently pneumonia.

Unseld, the second overall pick in the 1968 NBA draft, spent his 13-year career playing for the Bullets, first in Baltimore and later in Washington. He earned MVP honors in his first NBA season in 1969, becoming only the second rookie in league history to do so, along with Wilt Chamberlain. Unseld eventually won a championship for Washington and was chosen Finals MVP award in 1978.

Unseld is considered one of the best rebounders of all-time and he was just 6’7″. Unseld averaged 14.0 rebounds per game in 984 career regular season contests to go along with 10.8 points per game. He earned five All-Star nods and was inducted to the Basketball Hall of Fame as a player in 1988.

Unseld held a role in the Bullets’ front office following his retirement in 1981, then served as the team’s head coach from 1987-94 before becoming the general manager of the newly-renamed Wizards in 1996. He was the franchise’s head of basketball operations until 2000, then again from 2001-03 following Michael Jordan’s departure.

I mentioned MLB a little earlier and I have to say that things don’t look good for baseball actually playing some type of 2020 season. There have been proposal traded between the owners and the players union, but it seems like both sides are far apart in what the 2020 season should be.

While I don’t want to get into the financial aspect of these deals as that’s way too complicated to try to figure out between these two sides, but they don’t even seem to be close on the number of games that would be played. The owners first proposal featured an 82 game season while the players and their union countered with a 114 game season. There are now some reports out their that say the owners have a new proposal that features just a 50 game schedule. It seems as though the number of games is based around what each side thinks salaries should be for the 2020 season.

I’ve said before that at first I was very confident that I’d get to see baseball and they’d be playing a decent number of games, but now I’m thinking that there won’t be a 2020 season and if it’s just going to be a 50 game season; why even bother.

I’m extremely tired of listening to millionaires and billionaires cry about money; how about you?

Please let me know where you stand on these baseball issues. Do you think we’ll have a 2020 season? If you do think we’ll have a 2020 season; how many games will they play? How would you feel if they do play a 50 game season?

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

You can 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 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

 

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