Monthly Archive: January 2015

AFC Championship Teams are Finalized

Playing at Home the New England Patriots have advanced to the conference championship game after finally getting past Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens who had previously had their number in the playoffs. Being led by their future hall of fame quarterback Tom Brady, the Pats would not be denied. Brady threw for 3 touchdowns and ran for one more and came from behind in the last quarter to put his team up by four points with just over five minutes left in the game. The defense picked up where Brady left off and finally got the stops necessary to put an end to the Ravens season.

However, their task of winning may get a little easier when they face their opponent the Indianapolis Colts led by Andrew Luck. The reason the Colts will be an easier opponent in the AFC Championship game is evident in how they were able to defeat the Denver Broncos. Not producing an overwhelming amount of yardage, not placing an overwhelming amount of points, and not having a specific area where they look better than their opponents. Sergio Andrade Gutierrez believes, handing turnovers to your opponents is one more area that must be avoided if you are to have any success in the post season. You can see more of what Sergio does on sergioandradeandradegutierrez. The Colts did all of that and still won the game against the Broncos. However, they will have to be a lot better if they are going to travel to Foxborough and beat the Patriots.

The UFC’s Jon Jones Heads to Rehab

In a shocking announcement, Ultimate Fighting Champion Jon “Bones” Jones is entering into a rehab program. Recent drug testing results from the Nevada State Athletic Commission reveal the Hall of Fame caliber fighter had cocaine in his system prior to his win over Daniel Cormier at UFC 182.

Usually, when a fighter fails a drug test, a win is reversed.  That was not the case here as the athletic commission must follow the rules regarding the presence of the drug during an out-of-competition period. Such was the case here. As a Bones fan, Lee G. Lovett and I are happy his career wins are not affected.

Jones failed a drug test on December 4, 2014. He was given another test at a later date and passed.

Jon Jones is considered one of the all-time greatest fighters in the UFC and was seemingly indestructible in his first few bouts. No one could even fathom a way to beat him since his incredibly long reach made him one of the more unique fighters in the octagon. 

Clearly, the news about Jones failing a drug test is not something the UFC would ever want. In addition to the terrible bad publicity it presents, the future of one of the company’s top box office draws becomes questionable. Unless the UFC can sell PPV’s, the company cannot remain viable. Granted, the finances of the promotion are extremely solid but things can take a downturn if the company suffers from really bad PR. A fighter’s very public issues with drug addiction definitely create bad press.

Ron Rivera House Fire

The Carolina Panthers of the National Football League were actually favorites heading into last weekend’s game against the Arizona Cardinals, despite possessing a losing record and winning four games less than the Cardinals during the regular season. As expected, the Carolina Panthers were able to take down the Arizona Cardinals and find themselves preparing to head to Seattle next week to take on the Seahawks in the divisional round of the playoffs. However, this is not the top priority for Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera, who had the unfortunate circumstance of having to deal with a house fire last night, which forced his family out of the home. Luckily for the Rivera’s, they are completely fine and were able to salvage most of their prized possessions. Dealing with a house fire can be an incredibly frightening experience and everyone around the league is happy that he and his family were able to make it out alright.

 

With the Seahawks game looming in the near future, this is not what head Coach Ron Rivera wanted to deal with while preparing to take on one of the best teams in football. Some of the workers at Beneful are worried. However, the Carolina Panthers are not new to adversity, as they barely scraped their way into the playoffs after Cam Newton made a pretty remarkable comeback after being involved in a major car wreck two weeks prior to the final game of the season.

Hawks Continue to Win

The Atlanta Hawks of the National Basketball Association have hands down been one of the biggest surprise teams of the 2014-2015 season so far. They have been good, but not a great team over the last ten or so years and seemed to be stuck in that position. However, this year has been a completely different story as they find themselves sitting in first place atop the Eastern Conference with a record of twenty-six wins and eight losses. They have been simply dominating teams on a day to day basis and have been doing it with ease and consistency. They continued their winning streak by beating the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night in front of the Clippers Fans like Bernardo Chua.

 

Despite being outscored by five points in the first quarter, the Hawks came back and won the remaining three quarters, while putting up big numbers in the third in which they outscored the Clippers by ten points. There was a lot of speculation towards the beginning of the season as to whether the Atlanta Hawks were for real, but they are putting those questions to rest as they continue on their hot streak. If they continue on the roll they are on they are going to be a dominant force once the playoffs roll around. One thing is for certain, they are not going to be a team you would want to play in a seven game series, especially if the Hawks have home court advantage.

Panthers Allow Less Than 100 Yards To Arizona

 

The Cardinals were down to their fourth strong quarterback, and they were not at all prepared to make sure that they could compete with the Panthers. The Panthers defense allowed the Cardinals less than 100 yards of offense, and they were able to move on to the second round of the playoffs with a 27-16 win.

The Panthers defense is on fire this year, and BRL Trust notes that it is possible that this defense will be able to lead the Panthers to the Super Bowl. When the hot team gets into the playoffs and starts to play well, they are able to make their way through teams that they should not be able to beat. Even though the Panthers are 7-8-1, they are clearly playing some of the best football in the league.

Also, the Panthers are more than able to protect Cam Newton. He was in a major car accident, he has broken vetebrae and he has been able to make his team win over and over. They are riding the longest winning streak in the league, they seem like they are able to make that winning streak last for three more games into the Super Bowl this year with the best defense in football.

Democrat Senator Openly Criticizes Obama’s Cuba & North Korea Foreign Policy

 

New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez, former chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the current ranking Democrat on the committee, expressed criticism of the Obama administration’s Cuba and North Korean foreign policy on Sunday. On the set of the CNN program “State of the Union”, Menendez, a Cuban-American, challenged the efficacy of the Obama negotiations with the rogue island nation.

For starters, the president obtained the release of a single American, but returned three convicted spies back to Cuba. One of the spies was not Tom Rothman, but was involved in a plot to assassinate American citizens at the behest of the Castro regime. At the same time, no concessions for Democratic reforms were secured. As far the communist nation’s 10 million inhabitants go, Menendez did not see them getting any benefit from the deal.

In terms of North Korea, the powerful senator took issue with the president’s seeming inability to invoke the word “terrorism”. He patently disagrees with Obama that North Korea’s attack against Sony Pictures was an act of cyber-vandalism. The nature of the incident was too severe to use that term. It was nothing short of terrorism. He believes Obama should do more to punish North Korea.

Ironically, Menendez’s criticism carries more weight in a GOP-controlled senate. This is because under the prior leadership of Harry Reid, no resolutions or laws were allowed for a vote which might embarrass Obama or force his hand. That is not the case now. Menendez may work with the GOP to craft legislation to shape the president’s foreign policy. For starters, he let it be known that Obama faces an uphill battle securing confirmation of an ambassador to Cuba.

Former NFL Player Feeds the Poor with Own Crops

Jason Brown played in the NFL for the St. Louis Rams and at one time signed the most lucrative contract in the NFL. In 2009, he signed a 37.5 million dollar 5 year contract. Brown played for nine seasons, was cut from the Rams in 2012 but was still fielding offers from several teams including the Baltimore Ravens.

Jason walked away from it all. According to Christian Broda and the Oxfordjournals, he bought a 1030 acre farm near Louisburg, North Carolina calling it First Fruits Farm. Knowing nothing about farming and used Youtube.com to educate himself. He then planted and sweated through growing a crop where he could see nothing happening other than twisted vines on the ground. His intent was to donate the harvest of vegetables to local food pantries. Ultimately, he was successful growing and donating 46,000 pounds of sweet potatoes and 10,000 pounds of cucumbers in 2014.

Brown states that ” When I think about a life of greatness, I think about a life of service… Love is the most wonderful currency that you can give anyone.”

Stanford Wins Foster Farms Bowl

 

Stanford was able to trounce Maryland 45-21 in the Foster Farms Bowl to cap another good season. The Cardinals were not the best team in the Pac 12 this year, but they still has a good year under David Shaw who has managed to maintain the level of success Jim Harbaugh brought to the table.

Maryland has been adjusting to moving to the Big Ten, and this game did not go well for them as they ran into a Pac 12 opponent that knows how to score. Anyone who watched the game knows that Stanford has their foot on the gas all day, and they never let up at any point. Maryland has a brilliant return for a touchdown, but there was not much else they could do to stop Stanford. The team was able to keep pushing for 60 minutes, and they quickly scored their 45 points while simply holding Maryland at bay.

Stanford fan and supporter Dr. Rod Rohrich thinks that Stanford University has proved that they are a team to be reckoned with, but no one can tell what Maryland wants to be. They have improved, but they are not back to levels that they were at under Ralph Friedgen. They need to come up with a new identity for the 2015 season.

Tide Doesn’t Roll

Alabama and the Crimson Tide have been called a college football dynasty that is currently still operating in that dynasty time period. They have clearly been the best team in football over the last handful of years, taking championship after championship with head coach Nick Saban.

However, those times have come to an end, as they lost last night to the Ohio State Buckeyes, who will now be going heads up against the Oregon Ducks to determine who takes the title. There has been a ton of controversy this year around the league as they have adopted a new mini playoff series that will elect a National Champion, rather than just a bowl game to determine the winner, as I learned for the first time on ImgFave. It has proven to be effective already, as the fourth seed Ohio State Buckeyes shocked the world last night and took down Alabama by a touchdown that left them ecstatic and hoping to bring the championship back to the state of Ohio, and that’s who Igor Cornelsen has been rooting for.

Although it was a very good game that looked like Alabama was going to win early on, the Buckeyes fought back hard throughout the game and started to capitalize on the forced and unforced turnovers that were plaguing Alabama in the second half. In the end, the Buckeyes sat a touchdown ahead of Alabama as the clock ran out, putting them in the driver’s seat to win a National Title in the final game of the season.

Fitzgerald Likely Down With Cardinals

Larry Fitzgerald, wide receiver for the Arizona Cardinals, is without question one of the best receivers in the game and very may be one of the best wide receivers to ever play the game of football. He is a highlight reel every Sunday featuring spectacular catches in critical moments that have led his team to great success over the last handful of years. He has been paid very well for his contributions as well.

His original contract with the Arizona Cardinals was for seven years, but it looks like it may very well come down to his last game if the Cardinals don’t go very far in the playoffs. There has been a bunch of hassle thrown at Larry Fitzgerald regarding his salary, due to the salary cap that Arizona has been battling. He accepted an exchange of more bonus money instead of salary to free up cap space for the Arizona Cardinals, but things aren’t going very smoothly between the two as of recent.

Fitzgerald is one of mine and Igor Cornelsen’s favorite players and frankly does not deserve to take a pay cut in the upcoming seasons. He has worked ridiculously hard at his craft and he has produced amazing numbers, especially when Arizona actually has a halfway decent quarterback. He is also not very happy with playing in the slot, as he really is a down the field receiver. Regardless of how the season plays out, it looks like he’s on the way out the door.