NBA Trade Deadline Madness

Last week, NBA all-star power forward, Blake Griffin was shipped to the Pistons in exchange for Tobias Harris, a shoe, and a half ate can of beans. This began the most beautiful season for every sports season, the trade deadline. Poor Deandre Jordan must have felt excluded considering he has been in the discussion for trade all season, and now that the only attractive piece is gone; Jordan must feel like this.

Man what a day for the National Basketball League yesterday. What seemed to be a normal day just transpired into complete anarchy after ESPN analyst, Adrian Wojnarowski, dropped a Woj bomb of major proportion.  The deadline madness started with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavs have been going into a huge decline since trading all-star guard Kyrie Irving to the Celtics for Isiah Thomas and others. Isiah Thomas only played fifteen games for the Cavs and quickly became a cancer to the team due to his terrible defensive ability and being a gossipy teenager in the locker room. So the Cavs did what any smart team would do, shipped his ass out West. Thomas, teammate Channing Frye, and a 2018 first round pick for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. Can’t help but laugh at this trade coming a day after Thomas stated he did not want to be traded.

I am a huge fan of this trade. Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. are two very athletic players, who I think will seemingly mesh with LeBron and the Cavs with no issue. For the Lakers, they traded two players and cleared up nearly seventy-million dollars in cap space. Yes, that is a shit-ton of money. Enough money to grab two all-stars by the names of Paul George and LeBron James. However, this lineup they have right now with IT will not work and I see him in free agency this summer.

Image result for lebron pg lakers

I thought that would be it for big news. Then, boom! Another Woj bomb.  The Cavs were not done yet. They engaged in a three-way trade with the Jazz and the Kings. The Cavs sent out Iman Shumpert (sad) to the Kings, Derrick Rose (LOL) to the Jazz where he will be waived, and Jae Crowder to the Jazz as well. Jazz and the King’s sent two huge pieces to the Cavs in up and coming shooting guard, Rodney Hood and George Hill. All and all the Jazz got screwed and the Kings are still as irrelevant as ever.

This means the Cavs cleared up a lot of cap space and gave the them a new look. Will this be enough to keep LeBron?

The Cavs also sent LeBron’s best friend, Dwyane Wade, to the Miami Heat, where he truly belongs, and got a second round pick. That caps it for all the moves the Cavs made.

This next trade I was a huge fan of. This trade was the Suns and Magic trade. The Suns obtained Elfrid Peyton for a 2018 second round pick. Elfrid Peyton is an athletic guard with crazy potential who will be paired up with a young team with a very high ceiling.

Image result for elfrid payton suns

The last important trade was a three-way trade between the Knicks, Mavericks, and the Nuggets. The Knicks received Emmanuel Mudiay, the Mavericks received Doug McDermott and a second round pick, and the Nuggets got Devin Harris and a second round pick. This trade is big for the Knicks because they now have two very young and talented guards with extremely high potentials to build around Kristaps Porzingis (given he comes back healthy).

Image result for emmanuel mudiay knicks

While I am surprised the Celtics did not make a move other than sign Greg Monroe, I truly do not think any of these moves will effect the playoffs and who will the championship. The Warriors will have a very hard road to the championship, but they are the Warriors and they have four all-stars; thus, they are still going to win. All these trades really did was make each team a little more competitive, but every team cleared up a ton of cap space to make runs at big name players.

Image result for 2018 free agents nba

What do you think? Where is LeBron and PG going? Will these signing effect this season? Tell us down in the comments! Thank you once again for joining me on this Friday, and as always stay tuned to myself and the rest of Mid-American crew for fresh daily content.

TWITTER: @M_American_C

WEEKLY WAVES

Why Professional Wrestling Is Struggling In Today’s Culture

Professional wrestling has been a cultural staple in the United States, particularly in the South and Mid-Western parts of the country, for decades. Being a 90’s baby and the son of a huge professional wrestling fan, I grew up watching wrestling during what I believe to be the best time in the history of the sport. During a significant part of my childhood, wrestling was everything to me. I idolized the wrestlers. I collected the action figures (to this day, I still have literally hundreds of them boxed up in my garage). I proudly wore my replica championship belts. I watched WWE programming religiously. Wrestling was my greatest childhood passion.

meeee

However, wrestling gradually began to lose its appeal to myself and many other fans. At the time, I blamed my loss of interest on my discovery that the outcome of the matches were scripted and the departure of some of my favorite wrestlers from the sport. My recently rekindled love of wrestling has led me to reconsider this. I believe that a cultural shift and the industry’s attempts to keep up with said shift are more to blame than anything else.

 attitude

Wrestling was arguably never more popular than it was in the late 90’s and early 2000’s. The sport was at its peak during the “Monday Night Wars”. The Wars were actually a competition between the country’s two top wrestling promotions, World Championship Wrestling and World Wrestling Entertainment (then known as the World Wrestling Federation) for superiority over one another. The Monday Night Wars led to the beginning of the Attitude Era in the WWF. The borderline vulgar, often profanity-ridden, and violent storylines that came from the Attitude Era are some of the most entertaining content ever created by a wrestling promotion. Not only were the storylines great, but the characters were iconic and the viewer could really identify with them to an extent. Who didn’t want to give their boss the finger and pound beers like Stone Cold Steve Austin? Who didn’t want to have the charisma and swagger of The Rock? Who didn’t want to be as rebellious and controversial as the D-Generation X faction? No other point in wrestling history could even hold a candle to the Attitude Era.

rock austin

However, the sport took a drastic decline in the years following. After the demise of WCW, World Wrestling Entertainment stood as the only major player left in the world of professional wrestling. This led to a noticeable decline in quality. The crude, bloody action sport that wrestling was gradually declined into a series of watered-down matches between mostly goofy, generic characters. The change was undeniable. Ratings and house show numbers have fallen dramatically in recent years. These loses cant be blamed completely on the decline in quality, however. Even the less violent matches between the lower card wrestlers during the Attitude Era were great. So what is the issue?

BayleyAsuka.jpg

I personally believe that much of the problem is the change in culture in the last two decades. Ultimately, political correctness is a good thing. Simply put, it basically promotes common courtesy and respect being expanded to everyone regardless of who they are. It makes the community a better place. But, wrestling is not about that. Wrestling was so great during the Attitude Era because it provided viewers with an escape from all social norms. Fans could live vicariously through the wresters and experience things that are not plausible in the real world. As WWE became more mainstream and family friendly,    it strayed further and further away from what made it so great. While trying to move in a safer and more commercially acceptable direction is commendable, this alienates a vast percentage of the sport’s core fan base. The proof is in the numbers. The sport just isn’t the same.

bad

With that being said, it is important to note that there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. That light comes in the form of  a man named Paul Levesque. Better known by his in-ring name Hunter Hearst Helmsley (Triple H), Levesque was a focal point of the Attitude Era. As a member and eventual leader of, the D-Generation X faction, Triple H played a key role in some of the Era’s most controversial moments. Levesque is also the son-in-law of WWE owner Vince McMahon. Many believe that Helmsley will eventually take over the company. This could lead to an instant resurgence of the things that made pro wrestling the cultural icon it is today.

triple h.jpg

Only time will tell if WWE will return to its attitude-filled roots, but the future of the sport is certainly bright. Regardless of all of the flaws in the current WWE product I mentioned above, the current roster is arguably more athletically talented than ever before. With the right kind of help from the creative team, the wrestling promotion could easily return to its former glory. While the Attitude Era deeply contrasts what political correct culture is about, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Professional wrestling is scripted and predetermined. It is done for the sake of entertainment. Entertainment needs to continue to push boundaries. The world of professional wrestling can do that by bringing back what made it so edgy and exciting, despite pressure to conform to social pressure. While it does not need to turn to the gory, uber-violent, and often outright offensive content of a promotion like Extreme Championship Wrestling, WWE  does need to recapture some of the grit it exhibited during the Attitude Era. This kind of sports entertainment could succeed, and even thrive, in todays culture. It is time to bring the attitude back to professional wrestling and that’s the bottom line…….

steve.png

Twitter: @ BigRedAFerg

Predicting the 2018 MLB Postseason

Last week, I predicted the final standings for each division in the MLB for this upcoming season. I thought it was pretty fun, so I decided I’d go ahead and predict the postseason as well. So, let’s get to it!

Continue reading “Predicting the 2018 MLB Postseason”

Predicting the Final 2018 MLB Standings

UPDATE: CHECK OUT MY POSTSEASON PREDICTIONS HERE!

Ever since I was a young lad, baseball has been my favorite sport. In recent years, however, I’ve become more and more enamored by other sports (particularly football) due to my favorite team, the Cincinnati Reds, being…well…terrible. But they’ll always be my team, and baseball will always remain my sport of choice, even if I have to suffer until the Reds become good again. Is that possible next year? Probably not, but I figured I’d go ahead and predict the final standings for the upcoming MLB season. Let me preface this by saying: I am not a sabermetrician or MLB analyst, just a lifetime fan of the sport, and I don’t plan on including records or playoff predictions, just the final standings for each division. So, let’s get to it!

Continue reading “Predicting the Final 2018 MLB Standings”