The Back Page

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The Back Page

The NBA and NHL Playoffs are dominating headlines now and man have they been exciting.  A seemingly predictable Heat/Thunder NBA Final has turned very unpredictable and the NHL Playoffs are jumping into the second round with great matchups.  And some guy with the last name of Woods won the Players Championship in Golf this past weekend.  In all that excitement, The Back Page presents some of the stories you may have missed…

 NBA Coach of the Year:  George Karl

The Nuggets lost their 1st Round matchup against the on fire Golden State Warriors and that seems to have brought a shadow over the fact that our 2012-2013 NBA Coach of the Year is George Karl.  After 25 years as a NBA head coach, Karl has finally received some recognition for a job well done.  This year’s Nuggets had zero All Stars representing the All Star team in Houston this year but managed to win 40 of their last 50 games for the 3rd best record in the Western Conference.  Injuries to key players Gallinari, Lawson and Faried hurt them in the playoffs but let’s give Coach Karl some credit.  He had a fantastic season, has had a great coaching career and this award puts him in the upper echelon of NBA coaches. 

Are the Angels really this bad?

In the preseason, with a lineup consisting of Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton and Mike Trout, the only question for most would be how many games the Angels would win their division by.  Now the question is will they even win the division or will they even make the playoffs.  Seems like the same under achieving story as last year for the Angels.  Right now they have the 7th highest payroll in the majors but the 3rd worst record in the majors.  Their highest paid player at 25 million per year, Josh Hamilton is getting a lot of blame and rightfully so, but he’s not the only one under achieving.  Nobody on the team is hitting 300.  However, there is another culprit…The Pitching.  The Angels have scored 154 runs this year as a team which is comparable to division leaders such as the Yankees(157), Braves(157) and Cardinals(165).  The Angels pitchers have allowed 186 runs this year.  Compare that to the same teams Yankees(138), Braves(136) and Cardinals(122) and you find your problem.  Losing Jered Weaver hurts but one pitcher does not make a team, that’s why it’s called a rotation.  The Angels need to start swinging the bats better, but if they don’t find a cure to the pitching problems they are in trouble. 

Michael Vick beats LeSean McCoy in a foot  race

Everyone knows of Michael Vick’s athletic ability and speed as a quarterback.  That being said, he would not be expected to beat his 24 year old star running back LeSean McCoy in a foot race.  The 32 year old quarterback has endured several concussions, broken ribs and a broken leg as well as the years of wear and tear football can have on the body.  But, when McCoy kept calling out the “Old Man” in practice and challenging him to race, apparently Vick got permission from new Coach Chip Kelly and he agreed to the race.  Legend has it(there is no video footage) that Vick not only beat him, but beat him by 5 yards.  Impressive.  Vick credits Chip Kelly’s focus on strength and conditioning.  We all know the Oregon system of football and the high powered offense it produces so a healthy and fast Michael Vick can only lift the excitement surrounding the Eagles this year. 

Former Lions WR and top draft pick Titus Young arrested 3 times this past week

Detroit Lions history of high profile wide receiver draft busts continues.  Following in the footsteps of college stars turned high NFL draft pick, turned NFL bust is not the route I would recommend taking when beginning your NFL career.  Titus Young had a great example to learn from in Calvin Johnson, but instead followed Charles Rogers, Mike Williams and Roy Williams into Detroit Lions draft bust infamy.  Titus Young was arrested for the 3rd time THIS WEEK!  It was all for 3 seperate incidentsl.  That is quite a feat.  Recently released by the Lions after being a high 2nd round draft pick, Young has hit rock bottom.  It is unfortunate to see a young man with that kind of potential waste it the way he has and my only hope is he turns it around and can make something of himself and his talent.  Any guesses as to who has made this Detroit Lions wide receiver voodoo doll that has ruined so many?


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