Posts Tagged ‘Auston Matthews’

Derrick Rose is a member of the New York Knicks. Now I’m not sure if Knicks fans should take Rose’s last interview as confidence in his new team or if he needs to be drug tested. Rose implied that the Knicks are a “super team” in the same class as the Golden State Warriors. Rose never specifically says who has put the Knicks in that class and uses terms like “some people” and “they’re” when mentioning who has the Knicks in that class. Golden State set a record for regular season wins with 73. The Warriors went to the NBA Finals for the second season in a row. After winning the NBA title in 2014-15 season they did lose last seasons finals to the Cleveland Cavaliers. So what did the Warriors do to try and help ensure a trip back to the NBA Finals. They signed the top free agent on the market Kevin Durant. Last season the Knicks won 32 games and didn’t qualify for the playoffs in the Eastern Conference. Now besides Rose the Knicks have added Brandon Jennings to back up Rose, Joakim Noah and Courtney Lee in free agency. Rose, Noah and Lee should join Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis in the Knicks starting line up. While it looks like a solid starting line up for the Knicks and Jennings can score off the bench I think Rose may have put up too high of expectations for his new team. If the Knicks are going to get anywhere close to the “super team” rose has said they would be, he’ll have to stay healthy and play close to the form that won him the NBA MVP award in 2010-11. Rose played in and started 66 games for the Chicago Bulls last season. Those where the most games he’s played in since his MVP season. Rose’s scoring average fell to 16.4 points per game last season. Rose has never been a great shooter especially from behind the 3-point line. 29.3% last season and for his career he’s shot 30.2% from behind the 3-point line. Are the Knicks a super team? I’m not so sold on that, but they should improve on the 32 win team they where last season and may find their way into the Eastern Conference playoffs next season. Derrick Rose Stats

It’s that time in the baseball season where everyone is trading everyone to everybody. Outside of the talk there was actually a trade this week as the Seattle Mariners and the Chicago Cubs came to an agreement on a 4-player deal. The Mariners sent left handed pitcher Mike Montgomery and and minor league right hander Jordan Pries to the Cubs for minor league 1st baseman Dan Vogelbach and and right handed minor league pitcher Paul Blackburn.

Montgomery will give the Cubs some immediate help out of the bullpen. Montgomery has appeared in 32 games for the Mariners; 2 of them being starts. He has and ERA of 2.34 on the season. Lefties are hitting just .164 against Montgomery this season. Pries is a 26 year old pitcher who was pitching in Triple-A for the Mariners before the trade. He was 2-1 with an ERA of 3.85 in 7 games. Pries has spent 6 seasons in the minors and is 40-24 with an ERA of 4.41. He’s appeared in 109 career games with 93 of those as a starting pitcher.

Vogelbach was moved up to Triple-A for the Cubs. He got just 32 at bats there and was hitting just.125. Vogelbach has spent 6 seasons in the minors. He is a career .281 hitter and has 60 home runs. Vogelbach was blocked at 1st base with the Cubs by Anthony Rizzo; so turning him into a solid bullpen piece was a smart move. Reports have also said that Vogelbach is a below average defender. Now in the American League he’ll be able to spend time as a DH. Blackburn was one of the top rated pitchers in the Cubs  organization.  Blackburn is 22 years old and has been pitching in Double-A for the Cubs. He’s made 18 starts and is 6-4 with a 3.17 ERA. Over 102 1/3rd innings Blackburn has 72 strikeouts to 26 walks.

This looks like a deal that could benefit both teams. The Cubs needed bullpen help especially left handed bullpen help. Montgomery should supply that for the Cubs and down the road there’s a chance he could move into the starting rotation, but right now his value is in the bullpen for a World Series contender. The Mariners find themselves 4 1/2 games out of the wild card and the A.L. West lead. While it’s a reasonable total and the Mariners could move up they have to jump 4 teams to get a wild card spot and that’s a lot even with 66 games left in the season. Being that the Mariners got prospects you just never know, but Vogelbach has hit at every level and will get a shot in the majors with Seattle. Blackburn is young and has good numbers, but you just never know as a pitcher. We might have to wait and see how this deal turns out for Seattle.

The Toronto Maple Leafs signed the #1 overall pick in the draft Austin Matthews to a 3-year entry level contract. Matthews 18-year old from Scottsdale, Arizona, immediately became the face of the Maple Leafs’ franchise when they selected him first in last month’s draft. Matthews deal includes the maximum entry level salary of $925,000 per year plus potential bonuses that could add up to an average annual value of $3,775,000. Matthews says he will spend most of the summer at home in Arizona, preparing for the season and the World Cup of Hockey, where he will play for the North American under-23 team in September. The Leafs also signed 23- year old forward Josh Leivo to a two-year contract. Leivo was a third round pick in the 2011 draft. The Maple Leafs are coming off a season where they won 29 games and accumulated 69 points. The 18-year old Matthews and the 23-year old Leivo are part of Toronto’s youth movement as they try to rebuild their team. Will it be enough to get the Maple Leafs into the playoffs or are they still a year away from making there?

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We had some drafting done to end the week and not the fantasy kind. On Thursday the NBA had it’s draft. That was followed up on Friday by the NHL holding it’s annual draft. I’ll start with the NBA draft since I saw more of that.

First the things that drive me crazy. Why does the NBA not allow teams to make trades during the draft so we can actually see where the player is going and not have to hear about it later. It drives me nuts when a player is drafted by a team and he goes up on stage gets the hat and the jersey from the team that picked him and does the picture thing with Commissioner Adam Silver only to find out that he’s not with that team now. There where a couple of occasions when the television announce crew would spend 5 to 10 minutes breaking down a player and how he fit with the team that drafted him only to have to turn around and do it again for the team who had already traded for him. It’s not like all these trades are happening right now and the league can’t keep up with them. How is it possible that the NFL can handle teams making trades while they’re on the clock t draft, but the NBA is lost and can’t find a way to do it. Moving on; streamline the draft coverage. Why was the television coverage so long? For whatever reason ESPN stretched out the actual draft itself to like four hours when it probably could’ve been done in have the time. Would it of been that hard for them to put a draft recap show on or something like that instead of just dragging out the draft and making it unwatchable. I get it they overpaid for their contract to cover the NBA so they’re going to do everything they can to keep them on television, but stretching out the draft coverage like this makes it boring. With the way they handle the coverage they don;t seem to understand that the majority of the fans watching will go away from the channel and the draft after a pick has been made and then come back and pick the coverage up when it gets closer to the next pick being made. Maybe this doesn’t reflect in the ratings; so it doesn’t hurt their numbers. If it did then they’d care about it.

As for the actual draft itself. It went like most experts had predicted it would. Ben Simmons (LSU) went #1 overall to the Philadelphia 76ers. Then Brandon Ingram (Duke) went #2 to the Los Angeles Lakers. The Boston Celtics on the clock at #3 with one of there 8 picks on the night did everything they could according to reports to deal this pick for some veteran help, but couldn’t find a trade partner and ended up selecting Jaylon Brown (California) with the pick. Most experts thought after the first two picks came off the board any of the top players could be picked by any of the teams in the draft lottery and that’s how it went. The first real surprised was when the Milwaukee Bucks selected high schooler Thon Maker with the 10th pick in the 1st round. Maker didn’t attend college or play overseas, but spent last season at the Athlete Institute in Canada and this had some people questioning his eligibility for the NBA draft. There is also some question about his age. Maker is listed as being 19 years old, but there where NBA teams that took him off there draft boards as there are reports that he’s actually between the of 21 and 23. After Milwaukee took Maker the draft kind of settled back in and the story became how far would Skal Labissiere (Kentucky) fall. Most if not every mock draft had Labissiece being selected in the Top 10. Labissece was eventually selected by the Phoenix Suns with the 28th pick, but was traded to the Sacramento Kings in a draft day trade; that we of course didn’t find out about until after the pick was made. In his one season at Kentucky Labissece didn’t produce like it was thought he would, but still entered the NBA draft. The down season along with his performance at the NBA Draft Combine contributed to Labissece fall to #28. Back to the Celtics and all there draft picks. Besides Brown at #3 the Celtics selected Guerschon Yabusele out of France with the 16th pick of the 1st round and then at #23 the Celtics picked Ante Zizic from Croatia. As of no it appears that they’ll be keeping all three of these draft picks. Of course when you pick a player from overseas he might not be eligible to play in the NBA right away depending on what his contract situation is with his current team. The Celtics where able to deal a couple of their 2nd round draft picks #31 and #35 to the Memphis Grizzlies, but still had three 2nd round picks of there own. At #45 they took Demetrius Jackson (Notre Dame), at #51 they took Ben Bentil (Providence) and at # 58 Boston took Abdel Nader (Iowa State) to wrap up it’s draft night. I don;t think that the Celtics and there General Manager Danny Ainge thought they would walk away from the draft having picked six players. I guess will have to wait and see if there are some deals still in the works for the Celtics or if they’re going to open the 2016-17 season with quite a few rookies on their roster.

I’ll be the first to admit that I don;t know much of anything about the players that where drafted by the NHL last night. Auston Matthews get #1 overall to the Toronto Maple Leafs and I’d expect to see him with them in the 2016-17 season. I’m sure we’ll see a few of these 1st round draft picks playing in the NHL next season, but I just don;t know a whole lot about them. What I wanted to venture off into was some of the draft day trades that where made. The Detroit Red Wings traded Pavel Datsyuk; who I thought I heard was either going to retire or play next season in Russia along with the 16th pick in the draft to the Arizona Coyotes for 20th pick, the 53rd pick and Joe Vitale. I was a little surprise to hear that the St. Louis Blues broke up their goaltending tandem, but they did sending Brian Elliott to Calgary Flames for 2016 2nd-round pick (35th overall), 2018 conditional 3rd-round pick. The Chicago Blackhawks also made a move to help with there salary cap issues as they sent Andrew Shaw to Montreal Canadiens for two 2nd round picks #39 and #45. We’ll see if these deals impact any free agent signings or if some of the teams in these deals where so close to the salary cap that they just needed the relief.

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