meta name=”robots” content=”index, follow” Meschery's Musings of Sports, Literature, and Life Meschery's Musings on Sports, Literature and Life: 2016-02-14

What my musings are all about...

Blogging might well be the 21st century's form of journaling. As a writing teacher, I have always advised my students to keep a daily journal as a way of organizing their thoughts for future writing projects, a discipline I have unfortunately never consistently practiced myself. By blogging, I might finally be able to follow my own good advice.

The difference between journaling and blogging is that the blogger opens his or her writing to the public, something journal- writers are usually reluctant to do. I am not so reticent.

The trick for me will be to avoid cluttering the internet with more blather, something none of us need more of. If I stick to subjects I know: sports and literature, I believe I can avoid that pitfall. I can't promise that I'll not stray from time to time to comment on ancillary subjects, but I will make every attempt to be interesting and perhaps even insightful.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Friday, the 19th. This Morning's Sports' Page

Can't miss the opportunity, although I do not relish it, to say once again the Kings are totally screwed up. I remember praising Vlade Divac for trying to bring in some vets to surround the pouting but talented Cousins. Okay, good job, but what else had to be done, didn't get done. On the most tepid support of George Karl, not discipline for Cousins. And sad to say, no in-your-face-tough-love approach to his players by George Karl, which has surprised the hell out of me, since I know George to be a forceful man of integrity who does not put up with bad basketball. Now, this, Divac fires a perfectly solid assistant coach, who's responsibility is offense, not defense, which is the BIG problem for the Kings. The reason being, he [Divac] want to "shake things up." Are you kidding me? Is this dumb or is it dumb? Does Karl deserve better than this as Ailene Voisin asks in this morning's Bee?
You bet, but only if in the second half of the season, George becomes the coach he always has been - the coach who never let players get away with anything other than their best performance. George, get after your players, force them to play their best, and if management won't support you, make it clear that's the problem and quit. It's not worth losing your reputation and your legacy.

It looks like the talking heads and sports columnists were not too impressed with the trades that went down by trade deadline, but I see it differently. I think two teams might have made moves that will improve their squads dramatically. The Detroit Pistons have acquired Tobias Harris, one of the most underrated stretch forwards in the league plus Danatas Motiejunas and guard Marcus Thorton. Motiejunas is a young power forward will become better in a more structured atmosphere and Thorton can, when he's hot, fill it up from deep and has become a willing defender if not a great one. All in all, the team, with the addition of these players, improved their chances significantly to make the playoffs.

Jeff Green's addition to the Clippers is a plus. How big a plus is open to interpretation, but plus nonetheless. They got rid of Stephenson, who they weren't playing anyway for a stretch forward who possesses occasional All-Star skills. And occasional maybe all the Clips really need from him. Doc will be able to pull him when, as Green has done so often in the past, gone on vacation.

Not sure about Channing Frye going to the Cavs. That does help by stretching the floor for LeBron and Kyre, but doesn't address the Cavs glaring defensive weakness. Channing is not a defender, Kyrie is not a defender. Love is not a defender. When two of your starters are weak defensively, it doesn't make much sense bring in another weak defender.

Foye will help the Thunder, a team that is already playing extremely well. He provides a little more fire power and a little more is all they are looking for. It's an uptick. Sometimes upticks are all that's necessary for the playoff advancement.

If I were Portland, I wouldn't waive Varejao as it's been reported they'll do. With minutes in a back up role, Varejao could help the Blazers as they make a run at a playoff birth. He brings energy on the boards and defensively in the paint. And, he is a proven teammate, and that quality should never be overlooked.

Baseball spring training is starting. Just had lunch with old buddies from high school and I'm in the mood for nostalgia, so here's an old poem about baseball from the point of view of a New York Giant's fan back in the Twenties about the Cubs infield of shortstop, Tinker; second baseman, Evers; and first baseman, Chance whose skillful double plays often played a part in defeating the Giants. 

Baseball's Sad Lexicon    by  Franklin P. Adams

These are the saddest of possible words:
   "Tinker to Evers to Chance."
Trio of bear cubs, and fleeter than birds,
      Tinker and Evers and Chance.
Ruthlessly pricking our gonfalon bubble,
making a Giant hit into a double -
Words that are heavy with nothing but trouble:
      "Tinker to Evers to Chance."

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A Few Small Concerns

I'm a little worried that Rodger Goodell will have a hard time in the coming years now that the NFL has cut his salary down to $34.1 million. How's he going to pay for groceries?

Strange news from King Land. Do GM's fire assistant coaches without consulting first with head coaches?

More from the Land of the Kings: I'll take Mosgov and Shumpert for McLemore and Koufas any day of the year. Hell, Cousins likes to play on the perimeter anyway. Guess he can't get over that he was a guard when he was 12 years old. Of course, the irony is that the big fellow is the Kings second best 3 pt shooter.

I'm a little concerned with English grammar in the NBA after reading a quote by Eric Spoelstra of the Heat in this morning's sports page: "That was between Hassan and I." Eric, drop the Hassan, repeat the sentence and see how stupid that sounds. We got enough problems teaching grammar to our kids,we don't need NBA models screwing up.

Would somebody tell me how Marco Belinelli, who played a couple of fabulous seasons off the bench for the Bulls and Spurs, suddenly turned into a dud with the Kings?

Browsing through a collection of old poetry, I came across this lovely quatrain by William Makepeace Thackerary and started laughing at its quaint message.  No, that's Make Peace, not World Peace.

Who Misses or Who Wins

Who misses or who wins the prize
Go lose or conquer as you can;
But if you fall, or if you rise,
Be each, pray God, a gentleman.