15 April 2010

2010 NBA Playoff Predictions

1st Round
Eastern Conference

(1) Cleveland over (8) Chicago 4-1
The Bulls, despite the obvious talent on their roster, are in a lot of turmoil so don't expect them to win more than one game in this series. Cleveland takes it easily.
(2)Orlando over (7) Charlotte 4-3
Charlotte is a very good team and very well coached by Larry Brown. I think the Magic will be looking ahead so this series will go to 7 but Charlotte does not have the horse to take the series.
(3)Atlanta over (6) Milwaukee 4-0
Brandon Jennings has been great this season for the Bucks but without Andrew Bogut, this will be a quick exit for Milwaukee as Atlanta is just too good.
(4)Boston over (5) Miami 4-3
I'm really wavering on this series as I think it will be close. While I think Boston is clearly fading I think they're experience and Miami's inconsistency on the offensive end aside from D-Wade tips this one to Boston.
Western Conference
(1) Los Angeles over (8) Oklahoma City 4-2
Oklahoma City is clearly on the rise but this is the one matchup they did not want. The Lakers and Kobe Bryant will expose the Thunder's youth and inexperience and wins the series going away.
(2)Dallas over (7) San Antonio 4-3
I could easily see San Antonio winning this series; they are much better than their seed. But I think Dallas will squeak this one out and move along to the next round.
(3)Phoenix over (6) Portland 4-2
If Brandon Roy was playing I would've picked them. But since he is out this series , I think the Suns will run the Blazers out of the arena.
(4)Denver over (5) Utah 4-3
Another tough call as these teams are relatively evenly matched. But the difference in the series will be Carmelo Anthony, who will carry his team to the next round.
2nd Round
Eastern Conference

(1) Cleveland over (4) Boston 4-0
I think the Celtics will be tired and drained from their first round series and will show their age. I expect LeBron to have no regard for human life life in this series.
(2)Orlando over (3) Atlanta 4-2
I believe the Magic will learn from their tough first round matchup and will refocus on the Hawks and take them out with ease.
Western Conference
(1) Los Angeles over (4) Denver 4-1
I think the Nuggets will be beat after a tough and emotional series without George Karl and the Lakers will take advantage. I think Kobe Bryant will be without regard for human life in this series (thank god for Kevin Harlan).
(2)Dallas over (3) Phoenix 4-2
I think all of Dallas' talent will be too much for Phoenix who will not be able to run with as much success as they did in the first round.
Conference Finals
Eastern Conference

(1) Cleveland over (2) Orlando 4-3
I believe that this series will be one of the finest of recent memory. Both of these teams matchup well with each other but I do think LeBron James will be able to carry the Cavs to the finals
Western Conference
(2)Dallas over (1)Los Angeles 4-3
Call me crazy as so many people do but I think the Mavericks will beat the Lakers. Dirk Nowitski has his best supporting cast of his career, in my opinion, and I think they are deeper than the Lakers and I also believe Andrew Bynum will not have a great series, forcing Pau Gasol to play the 5 which plays into the Mavericks' hands.
NBA Finals
Cleveland Cavaliers over the Dallas Mavericks 4-2
The Mavericks will have the momentum from beating the Lakers and ruining the NBA's dreams for a Kobe-LeBron finals but I think they do not have a good matchup with LeBron who I think will carry his team to his first NBA Championship (and thus not sign with the New York Knicks).

14 April 2010

Marshall to Miami Analysis

So Brandon Marshall is now a Dolphin, pending a physical, for two second round picks, one in this year's draft.
For the Broncos, clearly Josh McDaniels was not a fan of Brandon Marshall and did not feel he had a part of his team and clearly Marshall was not happy in his current situation. But the problem is that now the Broncos need a number one receiver. Jabar Gaffney is not the guy nor is Eddie Royal. Kyle Orton needs some good receivers and those two are good but neither are a number 1. Will the Broncos draft Dez Bryant at 11? While I think they could, I don't think they will because I don't think that after dealing with Marshall that maybe he won't want to deal with another possible character concern. Plus now with 2 top second round picks and a bunch of solid receivers in the second round like Damian Williams, Golden Tate, or Arrelious Benn they might just draft Rolando McClain or somebody else in the first. I do not think the Broncos could have gotten much more for Marshall; a first rounder is so valued nowadays so I doubt they would've gotten a first for him.
For the Dolphins, this is a great trade. They keep their first round pick and they get a guy who is one of the few to catch more than 100 balls two straight years. They needed a number one receiver and Marshall is one of the best in the NFL. But then again, we all know how much Bill Parcells loves his malcontent receivers. But it is clear Chad Henne needed a big time receiver because Ted Ginn sucks when he's not playing the Jets.

13 April 2010

2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs Predictions

1st Round
Eastern Conference
(1)Capitals vs. (8)Montreal
Don't expect much trouble for the Capitals. The Canadiens were the worst team in goals scored in the NHL so they don't stand a chance against Ovechkin & friends.
Washington in 4
(2)New Jersey vs. (7) Philadelphia
The Devils are deeper and more talented than the Flyers plus have the experience to get things done. But don't be surprised to see Philly make things interesting
New Jersey in 6
(3)Buffalo vs. (6)Boston
Both teams struggle to score so this will be a goaltending series. While Ryan Miller may be one of the elite goalies and a borderline American hero, my gut is with the Bruins in this one
Bruins in 7
(4)Pittsburgh vs. (5) Ottawa
Ottawa has been very inconsistent this season and when the Penguins are rolling, they are very tough to beat.
Pittsburgh in 4
Western Conference
(1)San Jose vs. (8)Colorado
When the Sharks are rolling, watch out. Colorado's goalie Craig Anderson can't stop this train but they'll probably steal one
Sharks in 5
(2)Chicago vs. (7)Nashville
Nashville is a pretty good team but they can't compete with the Hawks when they're rolling
Chicago in 5
(3)Vancouver vs. (6)Los Angeles
The Kings are a great young team with a nice future that could get them closer to the Cup since this guy coached them, but the Canucks have the best goalie in the NHL and a solid supporting cast and they will win in a close series.
Canucks in 7
(4)Phoenix vs. (5)Detroit
The Coyotes have been a great story this year. But Detroit has been playing great hockey as of late and Mike Babcock who might be the best coach in the NHL will make the difference
Red Wings in 6
2nd Round
(1)Washington over (6)Boston in 5
The Capitals are the best team in the NHL and while Boston will play them tough, they've come to the end of the line here
(2)New Jersey over (4)Pittsburgh in 7
Yes the Penguins are the defending champs and yes they have Sidney Crosby. But the Devils swept them six games to none. They have Pitt's number and it continues
(5)Detroit over (1)San Jose in 7
Yes San Jose had the best record in the West but they've been in this spot and faltered before and I've learned not to bet against the Wings
(2)Chicago over (3) Vancouver in 6
The Hawks are pretty stacked and not even Rob Luongo can hold them back
Conference Finals
(1)Washington over (2)New Jersey in 7
As much as I want them to win, I just don't see the Devils defeating the Caps
(2)Chicago over (5)Detroit in 7
One of the top rivalries in NHL history adds another chpater as the Hawks outlast the Red Wings to get to the Finals
Stanley Cup Finals
Chicago Black Hawks over Washington Capitals in 7
Chicago wins by just barely topping Ovechkin to take the Cup

2010 NFL Mock Draft Part 2

17. San Francisco 49ers
DB: Mike Iupati G Idaho
WC: Anthony Davis OT Rutgers
MM: Joe Haden
DC: Mike Iupati
RL: Taylor Mays S USC
B-Flo: Anthony Davis
The 49ers need offensive line help and Samurai Mike has never met any underachieving player he can't turn around so don't expect the 49ers to be scared off by Davis's poor interview and combine.
18. Pittsburgh Steelers
DB: Kyle Wilson CB Boise State
WC: Rolando McClain
MM: Mike Iupati
DC: Maurkice Pouncey C Florida
RL: Patrick Robinson CB Florida State
B-Flo: Iupati
The Steelers have struggled as of late run blocking and I think they need to get back to their blue collar offense of the past and run the ball a lot better to get back to the playoffs so Iupati is the obvious choice.
19. Atlanta Falcons
DB: Brandon Graham DE Michigan
WC: Graham
MM: Maurkice Pouncey
DC: Graham
RL: Jason Pierre-Paul
B-Flo: Sean Witherspoon OLB Missouri
The Falcons need linebackers that can stop the run and defend the pass and Witherspoon is a pretty good linebacker prospect
20. Houston Texans
DB: Ryan Mathews RB Fresno State
WC: Earl Thomas S Texas
MM: Mathews
DC: Kyle Wilson CB Boise State
RL: Brian Price DT UCLA
B-Flo: Kyle Wilson
While the running back position is a big weakness, the Texans operate like the Bronocs of yesteryear and do not draft backs early. Their secondary is a weakness, not good when you play Peyton Manning twice a year. The Texans needs to replace Dunta Robinson if they want to take the next step and Kyle Eilson could be that guy.
21. Cincinnati Bengals
DB: Dez Bryant
WC: Taylor Mays S USC
MM: Mays
DC: Sergio Kindle DE Texas
RL: Brandon Graham DE Michigan
B-Flo: Earl Thomas
The Bengals need an impact safety for thei defense to take the next step and unlike Taylor Mays, Earl Thomas can cover so I think if Thomas is there he will be the selection.
22. New England Patriots
DB: Sergio Kindle
WC: Jermaine Gresham TE Oklahoma
MM: Jared Odrick DE Penn State
DC: Gresham
RL: Thaddeus Gibson OLB Ohio State
B-Flo: Gresham
Belichich has drafted tight ends in the first round before in Daniel Graham and Ben Watson and he's never drafted a rish linebacker in the 1st before either so Gresham is a good fit and would help the offense in the wake of the Wes Welker injury.
23. Green Bay Packers
DB: Bruce Campbell
WC: Charles Brown OT USC
MM: Brown
DC: Jerry Hughes DE TCU
RL: Ryan Mathews
B-Flo: Brown
My Packers need to boost their offensive line, even with the re-signings of Chad Clifton and Mark Tauscher because both have had injuries of late plus they are both old so Brown can devlop behind both of them and come in when needed. I think they'll take a corner in round 2.
24. Philadelphia Eagles
DB: Taylor Mays S USC
WC: Kyle Wilson
MM: Earl Thomas
DC: Thomas
RL: Maurkice Pouncey
B-Flo:Patrick Robinson CB Florida State
With the recent trade of Sheldon Brown to the Browns, the Eagles could use another corner especially with the strong pass offenses they face so Robinson would be a nice addition
25. Baltimore Ravens
DB: Jermaine Gresham
WC: Jared Odrick
MM: Kyle Wilson
DC: Demaryious Thomas WR Georgia Tech
RL: Rob Gronkowski TE Arizona
B-Flo: Dez Bryant WR Oklahoma State
It's shocking to think that Dez Bryant would fall this far, but people said the same thing when Randy Moss fell in 1998. While the Ravens did pick up Anquan Boldin & Done Stallworth, they like to pick the best available which would be Bryant and would build an even stronger reciever corps for Flacco to build with.
26. Arizona Cardinals
DB: Jerry Hughes
WC: Sean Witherspoon
MM: Jimmy Clausen
DC: Patrick Robinson
RL: Ricky Sapp DE Clemson
B-Flo: Jerry Hughes
Despite signing Joey Porter, the Cardinals would like to add a young pass rusher to play opposite Porter and Hughes is, in my opinion, the best pass rusher on the board.
27 Dallas Cowboys
DB: Nate Allen S South Florida
WC: Mike Iupati
MM: Anthony Davis
DC: Taylor Mays
RL: Dez Bryant
B-Flo: Taylor Mays
The Cowboys need some help at safety and while Taylor Mays can't cover, he is very fast and is a big hitter.
28. San Diego Chargers
DB: Jared Odrick
WC: Ryan Mathews
MM: Terrence Cody DT Alabama
DC: Dan Williams
RL: Jonathan Dwyer RB Georgia Tech
B-Flo: Mathews
The Bolts need a full time back to replace LaDanian Tomlinson and since Mathews is the best and most complete, in my eyes, back still on the board, San Diego has to take him
29. New York Jets
DB: Demaryious Thomas
WC: Sergio Kindle
MM: Arrelious Benn
DC: Jared Odrick
RL: Odrick
B-Flo: Jared Odrick
The Jets need some help alongside the monster Kris Jenkins on the defensive line and I think Odrick could be the next Shaun Ellis.
30. Minnesota Vikings
DB: Jimmy Clausen
WC: Devin McCourty CB Rutgers
MM: Kareem Jackson CB Alabama
DC: Tim Tebow QB Florida
RL: Clausen
B-Flo: Maurkice Pouncey
Pouncey would be a much needed upgrade to the interior of the Vikings line and he is a great value pick at 30.
31. Indianpolis Colts
DB: Maurkice Pouncey
WC: Rodger Safford OT Indiana
MM: Jerry Hughes DE TCU
DC: Charles Brown
RL: Dan Williams
B-Flo: Kareem Jackson
The Colts could use some depth at the corner position and Kareem Jackson is a good pick and would not have to start right away
32. New Orleans Saints
DB: Everson Griffen
WC: Brian Price
MM: Brandon Graham
DC: Sean Witherspoon
RL: Witherspoon
B-Flo: Brandon Graham
The Saints could use a pass rusher following the release of Charles Grant and Gregg Williams loves versatile players like Brandon Graham so its a very good fit for the Super Bowl Champs.

2010 NFL Mock Draft Part 1

One of my favorite times of the year, NFL Draft time. As the draft will start in primetime for the first time ever, the Rams are on the clock. I have put together a mock not with just my picks but with Sports Illustrated's Don Banks, WalterFootball's Walter Cherepinsky, WalterFootball's Matt McGuire, NFL Draft Countdown, and Sporting News' Russ Lande (from this week's issue). And here we go:
1. St. Louis Rams
DB: Sam Bradford QB Oklahoma
WC: Bradford
MM: Bradford
DC: Bradford
RL: Bradford
B-Flo: Bradford
Seems to be a trend. No way the Rams pass up on Bradford. While they have a lot of needs, a franchise quaterback is number 1. Whether Bradford is that guy, only time will tell
2. Detroit Lions
DB: Ndamukong Suh DT Nebraska
WC: Suh
MM: Suh
DC: Gerald McCoy DT Oklahoma
RL: Trent Williams OT Oklahoma
B-Flo: Suh
As I can certaintly testify, the Lions' defense is a mess. Even despite trading for Corey Williams and signing Kyle Vanden-Bosch, defensive line is the number one need (although a franchise left tackle would also help, as protecting your franchise QB is a must) Coach Schwartz loves a strong d-line, and the Lions love to take the best player available, so Suh is the pick.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
DB: Gerald McCoy
WC: McCoy
MM: McCoy
DC: Ndamukong Suh
RL: Suh
B-Flo: McCoy
The bucs desperatly need some defensive line help so they will take whoever the Lions do not at tackle.
4. Washington Redskins
DB: Russell Okung OT Oklahoma State
WC: Okung
MM: Okung
DC: Okung
RL: Okung
B-Flo: Okung
After trading for Donovan McNabb, the Redskins needs to and can focuse on their porous offensive line, and here take the best offensive tackle on the board.
5. Kansas City Chiefs
DB: Trent Williams
WC: Bryan Baluga OT Iowa
MM: Baluga
DC: Baluga
RL: Eric Berry S Tennessee
B-Flo: Baluga
While Safety is a big need for the Chiefs, GM Scott Pioli loves to draft for positional value and is not a fan of drafting safties this high in the draft, so therefore he tries to provide Matt Cassel better protection by drafting Baluga.
6. Seattle Seahawks
DB: Bryan Baluga
WC: Trent Williams
MM: Eric Berry
DC: Williams
RL: Derrick Morgan DE Georgia Tech
B-Flo: Berry
While Williams would fill a big need at tackle, Eric Berry is the best player available and could be a big weapon for Pete Carroll's defense.
7. Cleveland Browns
DB: Eric Berry
WC: Berry
MM: Jason Pierre-Paul DE South Florida
DC: Berry
B-Flo: Derrick Morgan
The pick really should be Jimmy Clausen, but Mike Holmgren is not a fan and spent a lot of money on Jake Delhomme plus Seneca Wallace is in the mix. The Browns need a big time pass rusher and the word is that they like Morgan so they will take him.
8. Oakland Raiders
DB: Jason Pierre-Paul
WC: Bruce Campbell OT Maryland
MM: Campbell
DC: Campbell
RL: Campbell
B-Flo: Campbell
We all know that Al Davis loves combine stars, and Campbell rocked the combine. He really was not a good player at Maryland as proved by not even earning Honorable Mention in the ACC, a weak football conference, but look at his 40! Does this all sound familiar to a year ago?
9. Buffalo Bills
DB: Anthony Davis OT Rutgers
WC: Jimmy Clausen QB Notre Dame
MM: Dan Williams DT Tennessee
DC: Clausen
RL: Davis
B-Flo: Jimmy Clausen
This makes way too much sense not to happen. The Bills need a quaterback and Buddy Nix is looking for a strong armed quaterback to play in Buffalo and new regimes often mean new quaterbacks, so unless something shocking happens, the Bills should take Clausen.
10. Jacksonville Jaguars
DB: Earl Thomas S Texas
WC: Derrick Morgan
MM: Morgan
DC: Morgan
RL: Joe Haden CB Florida
B-Flo: Jason Pierre-Paul
Despite signing my boy Aaron Kampman, the Jags need a consistant pass rush in they want to compete in the AFC (while selling tickets is a big problem so don't rule out Tim Tebow) and since Morgan is off the board, the Jags would be happy to land Pierre-Paul
11. Denver Broncos
DB: Rolando McClain LB Alabama
WC: Maurkice Pouncey C Florida
MM: McClain
DC: McClain
RL: Mike Iupati G Idaho
B-Flo: McClain
While Reciever is an option for the Broncos, Coach McDaniels pretty much hate B-Marsh so that throws out Dez Bryant. Linebacker is a big need and the Broncos need to step up their defense if they want to return to the playoffs so McClain is the pick.
12. Miami Dolphins
DB: Dan Williams
WC: Williams
MM: Dez Bryant WR Oklahoma State
DC: Bryant
RL: Demaryius Thomas WR Georgia Tech
B-Flo: Williams
Wide reciever is a big need but Bill Parcells just does not draft recievers first round, and when he was forced too by the Patriots he became the coach of the Jets. Nose tackle is a big need so Dan Williams is the pick.
13. San Francisco 49ers
DB: Joe Haden
WC: Haden
MM: Trent Williams
DC: Haden
RL: Bryan Baluga
B-Flo: Haden
Really struggled b/w Haden and Trent Williams but I think Samurai Mike will go CB here because the draft is stacked with o-tackles and CB is also a big need.
14. Seattle Seahawks
DB: C.J. Spiller RB Clemson
WC: Dez Bryant
MM: Spiller
DC: Spiller
RL: Spiller
B-Flo: Trent Williams
Trent Williams is too good for the Seahawks to pass up on and offensive tackle is a much bigger need than running back for the Seahawks in my opinion.
15. New York Giants
DB: Sean Witherspoon LB Missouri
WC: C.J. Spiller
MM: Witherspoon
DC: Anthony Davis OT Rutgers
RL: Rolando McClain
B-Flo: C.J. Spiller
In my opinion, despite the disappointing season last year, The G-Men don't have a lot of glaring needs and Jerry Reese ikes to take the top player on his board and while I think Witherspoon fills more of a need I don't believe the Giants will pass on a player to add to their offense that has the breakaway ability that Spiller has.
16. Tennessee Titans
DB: Derrick Morgan
WC: Jason Pierre-Paul
MM: Carlos Dunlap DE Florida
DC: Pierre Paul
RL: Sergio Kindle DE Texas
B-Flo: Everson Griffen DE USC
The Titans clearly need a pass rusher plus they also love workout warriors so Griffen is a good fit