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CATS FEVER

The Carolina Panthers are NFC SOUTH Champions, Yes we did it by no means was it pretty but it’s not how you start, its how you finish and we proved that this entire year! The last 4 games have been textbook for the Panthers from the top making the changes needed to make to spark this epic turnaround. Starting with cutting Jason Avant for questioning the play calling, which I did too, but it opened up an opportunity for Philly Brown who has been a spark-plug for our offense. Then the biggest difference was cutting the veteran older members that couldn’t keep up with the young, athletic wide receivers in the NFL today. Tre Boston and Bene Benwikere have been welcome surprises paired with Josh Norman our secondary from a weakness to strength and powered this run.

On the offensive side of the ball Jonathan Stewart is running with an attitude, showing that if injuries didn’t slow his career down who knows what he would’ve been able to do. The last 5 games he has been animal running the ball leading the league in rushing! With the running game clicking like it has it has opened up the read option game with Cam and passing lanes for Greg Olsen and Kelvin Benjamin both eclipsing 1000 yards on the year, Greg Olsen is a reliable target and don’t really know why the Bears let him go even though they had a different scheme he is a strong leader and a big reason we are where we are!

We may be 7-8-1 but we are a scary right now and like they say once you get in anything can happen! Things are clicking right now its been fun to watch!! I have pulled many hairs out this season, but it’s been worth it and now we get a chance to exact revenge on the tragic game in 2008 at the hand of the Arizona Cardinals. I will be there!!!!! BACK-TO-BACK CHAMPS BABY FIRST TIME EVER GO PANTHERS!!!!

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Family Love

Time to brag a little bit as my uncle Pat McMahon is going to be honored with the Lefty Gomez Award! An award presented to a person who has distinguished himself throughout the game of baseball locally, nationally and internationally. My uncle has touched so many lives in a positive manner, there are too many to count as that number continues to grow today.

He has a resume that would rival many of the best names around the game of baseball 30 years of inspiring and changing athletes’ lives from the high school level to the pro level. Starting at Bishop Kenny High School his alma mater where he was a good pitcher in his own right, that got his feet wet as a head coach.

Next he was the head man at Mississippi State he led them to a College World Series appearance and a coach of the year award. He was able to handle big personalities including Raphael Palermo while there. If that didn’t convince he was a special head coach I have more. He then led Old Dominion to relevancy in his time there. He then got a chance to don the Red, White and Blue with USA baseball as an assistant, he was able to get a bronze medal then in 2001 he was able lead them as a head coach. That’s just the start of what he has been able to do in the baseball world!

Where he became a household name for many was at the university of Florida leading them to many winning seasons and a runner-up finish in the 2005 World Series. It was possibly the hottest weekend ever, but it was so much fun, even though they came up short. I don’t know why, but the university decided to go in a different direction. During his time at 3 universities, he amassed 584 wins, which is amazing and shows his amazing coaching ability to adapt and change in every situation!

The New York Yankees came a calling after that, it says a lot about the person and the knowledge of the game when one of the most storied franchises wants you. His current position, as international player development coordinator, helping develop future Yankees and classy ballplayers.

He can do it all folks and does it with ultimate class in every situation even with umpires when he didn’t agree. He a big reason I love sports so much and am pursuing a career in sports! Congratulations well deserved Love you very much!!!!!!!!!!

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Million Dollar Mistakes

Sports no doubt is an industry that throws money at every possible situation, trying to put the best team on the field. The contracts these days are ridiculous, with 100 million dollars being average which is laughable. The problem is when decide to give one of these and it doesn’t work well a lot of people mad!

Two examples of that are Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, who signed 7 years years 126 million dollars, which was questionable at the time and he showed us why forgetting who plays on his team with 18 interceptions and just making any plays. Leading to his benching for Jimmy Clausen, who hasn’t started in 2 years and is 1 and 10 as a starter that’s desperate for sure.

One thing on bears fans Christmas list is an overhaul to find an identity and a quarterback to lead the team to victories! Hopefully for their sake they can wipe their hands of Jay Cutler completely.

The other contract that has tied the teams hands financially is one of my teams the Braves Bj Upton, who signed the highest free agent contract the Braves have ever given out, 7 years 75.25 million makes me want to puke because he has hit under.200 since he has been with the team and has stuck out so many times he couldn’t hit a beach ball I could make more contact than he can and that’s bad!!

We still owe him 46 million, which has caused us to go on a mini rebuild, getting rid of some of the best talent to free up money to add more players for less its very frustrating, but needed because when bad contracts snowball their is no other option! We will see what happens this year I think we will still be competitive but not where we want to be.

This goes to show you you better be very confident when you sign one of the mega deals because you must answer questions if they backfire and sometimes you will pay the ultimate price with your job! Gotta love sports!!

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Flying High

Oregon has had a magical year thus far and will face Florida State for the right to play in the National Championship! Tonight however, it was time to celebrate the person who help lead them there as quarterback Marcus Mariota became the first Oregon player to win the heisman trophy and man was it well deserved.

The ultimate dual threat quarterback with the foot speed of a deer and agility to make college footballs best defenders look silly, oh and a great arm too the total package with the stats to back it up. With 101 total touchdowns and only 12 interceptions in his entire career that is laughable in this day and age makes you do a double take.

Not only is he a great player but very humble tonight his speech there was not a dry eye of anyone who listened to that speech he defected all the praise elsewhere a breath of fresh air to the entire sports world! I feel sorry for all the NFL defenses that have to chase him for many Sunday’s to come all I got to say is Good luck with that! Congrats Well deserved!

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Winter Meetings Thoughts

The winter meetings just finished up and it was the most active one ever with 20 trades. The most surprising move to me was the Dodgers shipping slugger Matt Kemp to the Padres, because the Dodgers still had 5 years of control and sending him somewhere he can inflict direct damage being in the same division. It’s a very questionable move for me, but they did have outfield clutter so that fixes that and with a new GM changes have been made in bunches for the Dodgers and more to come.

It was also a battle of Chicago as both the White Sox and Cubs made big splashes, White Sox getting David Robertson a star reliever to finish games next year, and Jeff Samardzija a front-line starter to be paired with all star Chris Sale a pretty deadly combination with Carlos Rodon waiting in the wings. They could be very dangerous this year.

The Cubs were busy as well, landing one of the big fish of the off-season Jon Lester and getting Miguel Montero to lead that pitching staff. I am happy for Jon Lester because he has a chance to become a hero in a city that has been championship starved. With that young talent the skies the limit for them and Joe Madden is the perfect leader for this team, because in my opinion the Cubs are the National leagues version of the Rays and we know how that’s played out. They are the most intriguing team for me excited to see how this season plays out for them. Baseball could be very exciting in the Windy City this year!

Now for my team the Braves were relatively quiet on the transaction front, but they were able to pick up utility man Alberto Callaspo a low strikeout guy and a veteran presence in the clubhouse. Justin Upton and Evan Gattis have been in trade talks all off-season and some fans are frustrated we haven’t made those moves yet, but it’s important to get the best haul possible and don’t settle! Be patient Jon Hart is smart he will put the best team possible out there. Baseball games aren’t won on paper lets let the off-season fully play out before we judge. Baseball is fun on and off the field this year especially.

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Hart Piecing it Together

The Braves are having the busiest offseason in a while, this week making a splash signing veteran outfielder
Nick Markakis to a 4-year 44 million dollar deal as the replacement for Jason Heyward. Markakis 31, is very durable,averaging 155 games played in his career and those types are hard to come by these days. He also gives you a great at-bat putting the ball in play low strike out guy,which is something we desperately need as last year we had 9 strikeouts per game and you can’t win games like that.

My favorite part about this signing is he brings a veteran presence that we didn’t have last season that might’ve saved a dismal September. I forgot to mention we are also replacing a 2-time gold glove winner with another also not bad

Some experts are saying this goes against the plan of rebuilding and maybe that’s tue, but I think you can rebuild and try to win at the same time and think that’s what Hart is doing, getting rid players heading into their free-agent year knowing you going not going to resign them,get what you can and save money to invest in multiple areas of the team instead of just that one player.

He also made some changes with the pitching staff not signing Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy both coming back from their second Tommy John surgery,which is very risky to keep as it is unknown how you will come back and most importantly how effective you will be. I love them both and I hope they have success wherever they end up, but I agree it’s to much of a risk. This method is smart and has worked for Hart before with the Indians in the 90s, I trust his vision and nobody knows until we play the games so don’t be to judge.

This has been a crazy offseason already and we are just getting started as the winter meetings start Sunday, I will be glued as more moves will be made to shape this team and I am excited to see what we are going to put on the field in 2015!! Go Braves

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