13) Have to be some basketball coaches, both in college and the NBA, who are a little queasy about their jobs today; Billy Donovan won’t be coming back to the Oklahoma City Thunder next year. Thunder went 243-157 under Donovan, 18-23 in playoff games, but may be headed towards a rebuild, so someone else will coach their team going forward.
If Donovan announced he wants to go back to college coaching, how many schools wouldn’t fire their coach to bring him in? His Florida teams are the last back/back NCAA champs.
12) Nigel Richards is a man from New Zealand who memorized every French word in the French scrabble dictionary and won the French Scrabble Championship without being able to speak any French. Why would you even attempt that, and how long did it take him?
Is there big money in Scrabble? Hope the guy made a fortune.
11) Sounds like college basketball could begin this season with a series of events in bubbles around the country, much like the NBA has done in Orlando, giving teams a few games to play out of conference before Christmas.
I’ve heard Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, Sioux Falls SD, Houston as potential bubble sites.
10) It snowed in Colorado, South Dakota this week; it is freakin’ September 9 and it snowed. No bueno.
Denver Broncos had to practice indoors and right before the end of practice, their star LB Von Miller hurt his ankle and is probably out for the season.
9) Orioles 11, Mets 2— This has obviously been a weird season, but right now Baltimore is only a half-game out of a playoff spot in the American League. They lost 115, 108 games the last couple of seasons, but now they’re vastly improved at 20-21.
Random observations; Orioles have very nice hats. Also, their utility guy Pat Valaika is 8-12 against the Mets this season.
8) Padres 14, Rockies 5— If you bet over 8.5, you got to go to bed early; game was 5-3 after the first inning, 10-3 after the second. San Diego won 1-0 Monday night; they scored 10 runs in first two innings of this game.
7) September 7, 1993, guy on the Cardinals named Mark Whiten hit four home runs in one game, knocked in 12 runs. Imagine going up against him in fantasy that week? Quite a night.
I bring this up because two of the four home runs that night were hit against a Reds’ pitcher named Mike Anderson, who was making his major league debut.
Mike Anderson is the brother of Brian Anderson, who is now the play-by-play guy for the Milwaukee Brewers; he also does NBA games on TNT. Brian Anderson was talking about that game with Stan Van Gundy on the NBA broadcast the other night; they were laughing, but if Mike was listening at home, maybe he wasn’t.
6) Marlins 8, Braves 0— Rookie Sixto Sanchez threw six shutout innings; Miami is 19-18 and would be in the playoffs if they started today.
5) NBA Draft was pushed back to October 16; no way the next NBA regular season starts before Christmas, maybe not even until Martin Luther King Day in January.
4) NBA players apparently bring their own food to the bubble every day; Celtics’ star Jayson Tatum brings his lunch in a Lion King lunchbox, the square, metal kind of lunchbox we all used when we were kids. Pretty cool.
I had a Volkswagen bus lunchbox back in the day; they opened a new VW dealership near my house and they were giving them away.
3) Miami 103, Milwaukee 94 (Heat wins 4-1)
— Giannis Antetokounmpo sat this one out with a bad ankle.
— Miami’s four subs were a combined +68.
2) Lakers 112, Houston 102 (LA leads 2-1)
— Kuzma/Rondo shot a combined 15-21 off the bench.
— Rockets’ starters other than Harden/Westbrook shot combined 7-19.
— Houston scored 64 points in first half, 38 in second half.
1) If the baseball playoffs started today (they do not):
AL East- Tampa Bay, Toronto
AL Central- Chicago, Cleveland
AL West- Oakland, Houston
AL Wild Cards- Minnesota, New York
NL East- Atlanta, Philadelphia
NL Central- Chicago, St Louis
NL West- Los Angeles, San Diego
NL Wild Cards- Miami, San Francisco