13) NBA released its schedule for Orlando Friday night; games start July 30:
July 30: Jazz-Pelicans, Clippers-Lakers
July 31: Magic-Nets, Grizzlies-Blazers, Suns-Wizards
Celtics-Bucks, Kings-Spurs, Rockets-Mavericks
12) Games will start during the afternoon; latest tip-off time seems to be 9pm.
11) Playoffs start August 17; NBA Finals are expected to begin September 30.
10) In 2001, the Seattle Mariners went 116-46, but lost the ALCS in five games to New York. How did a team that won so many games not win the AL title?
Mariners had Ichiro Suzuki, Edgar Martinez, John Olerud; damn good lineup.
33-yea old pitcher Paul Abbott went 17-4; his career record was 43-37. Lot of things went Seattle’s way that year, but the playoffs are more of a crapshoot. Anything can happen in a short series, which is part of what makes this year’s 66-game regular season very intriguing.
’97 Mariners went went 90-72, won the AL West, but lost the ALDS to Baltimore; that Seattle team had Ken Griffey Jr, Edgar Martinez, Alex Rodriguez, Jose Cruz.
Pitchers Randy Johnson, Jamie Moyer went a combined 37-9.
Seattle hasn’t made the playoffs since 2001.
9) Speaking of Seattle, how do they have a WNBA team, but not have an NBA franchise?
SuperSonics moved to Oklahoma 12 years ago, a terrible decision by the league, but Seattle wouldn’t build a new arena, so they lost their team. Seattle is getting an NHL expansion team, because they finally built the new area. Go figure.
8) Best wishes to SK Wyverns’ manager Youm Kyoung-youb, who passed out in the dugout during the first game of a doubleheader Thursday- he came to in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Wyverns split the twinbill, are 13-31 this season.
No matter what country you’re in, losing is stressful.
7) For the first time in five years, Dodger baseball won’t be blacked out in Las Vegas anymore, very good news for sports books in the desert.
I was there a couple nights the last few years when the Dodger game was the last game of the night, but wasn’t on TV in Las Vegas because of stupid blackout rules, which cost the sports books some action, and cost MLB some much-needed attention.
6) NFL cancelled the Cowboys-Steelers Hall of Fame exhibition game, and postponed the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies until next summer.
5) There are people who want Washington DC to become the 51st state; I have absolutely no opinion on this, but it would help companies who make/sell American flags- they’d have to make new masks. with 51 stars on them.
4) Collin Morikawa missed the cut in Hartford Friday; his streak of 22 straight made cuts to start his PGA career stops three shy of Eldrick Woods’ record of 25 straight to start a pro career.
3) This week in 1996, Golden State Warriors drafted Todd Fuller two spots ahead of a high school kid named Kobe Bryant.
Fuller averaged 3.7 ppg in his five-year career. No bueno.
2) When former North Carolina basketball coach Dean Smith passed away five years ago, he left each one of his former players $200 apiece in his will— thats around 180 players in all.
1) Here is an interesting fact:
Over the last two weeks, COVID-19 cases have risen by 84% in states where wearing a mask in public isn’t mandatory.
In states where masks in public are mandatory, COVID-19 cases are down 25%.
My conclusion? Please wear a mask in public.
TV highlight of the day: E! Channel ran a marathon of the TV show Las Vegas with James Caan. I had never seen it before, so enjoyed that the last couple days.