Saturday’s List of 13: Clearing out a cluttered mind…….

13) I’m reading Pat Riley’s book The Winner Within; he talks about Game 7 of the 1980 Finals, when the Lakers beat Philadelphia despite Kareem Adbul-Jabbar missing the game with a bad ankle. There wasn’t much subbing that day:

— Every Laker starter played 39:00+ (out of 48:00)
— Magic Johnson played 47:00
— The entire LA bench played 29:00; Mark Landsberger played 19 of those.

I’ve re-discovered reading books the last few weeks, a positive development.

12) Interesting reading Riley’s book at the same time the documentary about the Chicago Bulls is on ESPN every week; Riley posted his stages of team building, and the challenges they present for coaches.

The one that always stuck in my mind was “The Disease of Me” where after a team becomes successful, lot of people take the attitude that they’re THE REASON a team won, rather than A REASON why the team won. Stuff like that breaks teams apart.

11) Back in 1981, first round of NBA playoffs was a best-of-3 series, which is a great idea, makes for much more drama. But when the league became more popular, that went out the window so the league could have more playoff games, make more $$$. Too bad.

I think TV ratings for shorter series would be through the roof; it would make it more like the NCAA tournament, then their TV revenue would also go up, but no one asked me.

10) The people who did the Bulls’ documentary that is on ESPN interviewed 106 people; they were serious about who they put in the show- for instance, Bill Clinton was only in there because he lived in Arkansas while Scottie Pippen played at Central Arkansas and he saw Pippen play. Bob Costas was in there because he briefly broadcast Bulls games back then.

9) As far as coaches’ homes during the first night of the NFL Draft, Arizona Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury had the nicest house; floor to ceiling windows, nice big living room. Anthony Lynn, the Chargers’ coach, looked like he was working in a cramped kitchen. Not good.

8) Dallas Cowboys did several mock drafts, and in none of them did Oklahoma WR CeeDee Lamb fall to them with the 17th pick, so they had to be pretty happy.

7) Denver Broncos’ playoff history:
— John Elway at QB: 14-7
— Peyton Manning at QB: 5-3
— Anyone else at QB: 4-9

Their last playoff appearance was in 2015.

6) Indians manager Terry Francona is one of three head coaches/managers in the four major sports to coach 2+ teams for 7+ years each, and never finish with a losing season with either one.

The other two? Phil Jackson, Scotty Bowman

5) Watching the 2014 NFL Draft the other night, seeing Aaron Donald fall to the 13th pick for the Rams, and you realize what an inexact science drafting is. Millions of dollars gets put into research, interviews, etc, and the Rams got the best guy with the freakin’ 13th pick.

4) I don’t like the Olympics very much, usually never watch them, so it was fun to watch replays of old gold medal basketball games from previous Olympic Games this week.

I had no recollection of Rudy Tomjanovich coaching our Olympic basketball team the year the Olympics were in Australia. American team won, but they struggled at times; Gary Payton, Jason Kidd led the team, but Vin Baker was on an Olympic team? That surprised me.

3) Doug Collins was the analyst on those Olympic Games; we need Collins back on network TV, he might be the best NBA analyst I’ve ever heard, him or Hubie Brown. Collins goes to lot of Northwestern games now; his son Chris coaches the Wildcats.

2) Glad to see the Chargers put the uniform numbers back on the sides of their helmets; they had them like that in the 60’s/70’s. Chargers have nice uniforms.

1) Is it possible that Nick Saban has never sent an e-mail? I know he has a secretary, a wife, probably an administrative assistant, and 42 assistant coaches, but how in 2020 has someone who is in charge of a multi-million dollar industry never sent sent an e-mail?

Author: Armadillo Sports

I've been involved in sports my whole life, now just write about them. I like to travel, mostly to Las Vegas- they have gambling there.