The View From Mt. Airy 07-29-16

images@MtAiryPhil

PHILADELPHIA, PA

Legends of The Dome appeared to be wildly successful. Looked like a repass for a loved one who was loved by all and left here far too soon. Kudos to the many Rams all-timers who came out, mixed, mingled and reciprocated the love and adoration of the St. Louis faithful who gathered more than likely, for the final time, to express their love and respect for the “Greatest Show On Turf.”

That being said, it’s time for the Arch Angels to redirect their collective sports energies.

Once upon a time, there was a wildly successful St. Louis sports franchise. They dominated their division, owned the Lakers, and are one of the few NBA franchises that can claim a win over the dynastic Boston Celtics in an NBA Final. The St. Louis Hawks, who landed in the Gateway City in 1955 after 4 last place finishes in Milwaukee (http://www.sportsecyclopedia.com/nba/stlhawks/stlhawks.html) and immediately turned around their fortunes behind a young Bob Pettit, who in the Hawks first season would win the 1st NBA MVP Trophy and lead them to the NBA Finals with a 33-39 regular season finish followed by an upset of the Lakers in the Western Division finals which was one of the most remarkable playoffs ever. The Hawks won Game 1 by a  single point. Lost Game 2 by 58 points, and won the decisive Game 3 by a single point. Total aggregate of -56 points but they moved on. The early Hawks would win consistently and would leave St.Louis for Atlanta in 1968 after winning the division with a 56-26 record under coach Richie Guerin and an imposing roster led by Paul Silas, Sweet Lou Hudson, Lenny Wilkens, Jumping Joe Caldwell and the Pride of Prairie View, Zelmo Beaty. For years I heard the story of failed attendance as the reason for their departure but upon further review that doesn’t resonate as truth. The Hawks didn’t break records, averaging just 6800 paid per game, but the ENTIRE league avg. in the Hawks final season was just 6,749 paid including the champion Celtics, whose paid attendance average was just 8,670 per game. Look it up. The New York Knickerbockers were the only team over 10k in average attendance in the ’67-68 season and I still can’t figure out the move to Atlanta, especially when you factor in that in the Hawks first season in Georgia, they would average just 4,427 per game and wouldn’t crack 6,000 per until their 6th season in the south. Why this walk down memory lane? Why this opening of a nearly 50-year old wound? Because if I’m a St. Louis sports fan, I’d be thinking its time we got our focus off the traitorous, despicable Rams and their carpetbagging owners who will soon find that not only is the grass NOT greener in the City Of Angels, but the bank account isn’t either. There is a reason why the Rams and Raiders left, and yes I know that TV pays the bills in today’s NFL, but empty seats resonate still. Goodbye.

Beat the NBA drum. Remind them of the storied tradition of the St. Louis Hawks. Show Adam Silver the St. Louis Blues history of drawing huge crowds in a market where everyone assumed the NHL had lost their collective minds expanding into, despite having never won a Stanley Cup. The Blues now have nearly half of a century of selling out the St. Louis Arena (CheckerDome), Kiel, oops I mean, Scottrade Center.

The infrastructure is there. Beautiful NBA ready arena. Lustful fanbase that has been simmering for years in the shadow of the Chicago Bull dynasty, and now looking over their shoulders and seeing the sold out crowds partying in OKC. It’s time St. Louis. Gather your elbows and begin to beat your NBA drum. The league will expand in the next the next four years under the billions and access to every market guaranteed by their historically wealthy 24 billion dollar, 9-year deal. The league wants always to expand by two, maintaining an even number of teams that makes scheduling and conferences sure numerically. Seattle gets the first franchise. Write it down. Until Kevin Johnson rode to the rescue of the city of Sacramento, the Kings were headed to the Emerald City 2 seasons ago. The city had broken ground on a new arena and the league was prepared to welcome back am amazing an supportive fanbase that had nothing to do with the Sonics departure to Oklahoma City in the first place. The city of Seattle still owns the rights to the colors, name, all trophies and records of the original franchise under the settlement allowing the ownership under Clay Bennett to jump ship in 2008. They are a lock to be the first city in any future NBA expansion.

That leaves St. Louis. The natural geographic location for the second team. What other choices are there. Adam Silver and the NBA don’t need Vegas in the way that the NHL does. NBA history has been littered with hints and instances of manipulation. I don’t think they want their product across the street from a sports book as a playoff Game 7 takes a left due to a referee’s whistle.

I’ve gotta believe the NFL thirsty  citizens would grab 10,000 NBA season tickets on day 1, even with the knowledge that the expansion product in year one would most likely be an assembly line of end of the benchers (think Nik Stauskas) and problem contracts and everybody’s NBA knuckleheads (think Nick Young). Sounds like fun to me.

St. Louis, from over here in the land of Ben Simmons, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid, Dario Saric and the emergent Philadelphia 76ers, we’d welcome you back. Turn the page. Raise a collective middle finger to the pirates who stole your NFL team. Bury ’em. You had a great sendoff with the legends game.
Finally, you’ve got an owner in waiting. The two brothers Ozzie and Daniel Silva, who have made $800 million since signing away their rights to the St. Louis Spirits in the ABA contraction and merger which netted them $2 million and an NBA TV share in perpetuity (the best business deal ever made anywhere) that still reaps major benefits. Bring ’em to the table.
Times yours St. Louis. Can’t you hear the Scottrade Center in Game 5 of the NBA Eastern Conference semi-finals? Surely you can feel opening day. This one’s a natural. How about this? The St. Louis Sounds. Stop the NFL nightmares and begin the NBA dreams. Goodnight.

http://hangtime.blogs.nba.com/2014/01/09/nba-settles-perpetuity-deal-with-former-owners-of-aba-spirits/

THE A-TRAIN RANT 14.0!

296958_1545752100335_1731016917_773274_1225805634_n1.jpg

Time for the 14th edition of The A-Train Rant…hope your sports weekend was good, here at A-Train’s home…umm hell no.

That’s why I’m hear to rant about it…enjoy.

PRE-RANT: I always look forward to what Kevin Slaten has to say about Missouri sports…ALWAYS. Some things I like, others I don’t. He can be sane, he can be crazy. He’s entertaining. He makes sure you have something to say (if you listen to him). Check out “Slaten Unleashed” on TalkSTL.com every weekday from 3pm-6pm. Sometimes it’s good to be antagonizing, other times not. Still a sight to see each weekday afternoon.

  1. I’m cheering for Florida State in the national championship. Auburn did what they had to do in the SEC title game but I’m going against them.
  2. Welcome back, Kobe Bryant. Am I being nice to Jellybean? In this case, yes. Just hope it doesn’t bite him in his ass making this triumphant return and winds up going back on the shelf.
  3. Speaking of injuries, I would be happy that Rob Gronkowski got hurt…but I can’t. The reason is because you’re seeing a long trend of top players get hurt. I understand football players take pain and so do other athletes, but when is it smart to comeback and play again?
  4. I had no idea that baseball managers could get in the Hall of Fame so easily…Tony LaRussa, Joe Torre, and Bobby Cox are in.
  5. I guess I’m supposed to be thrilled for the Lambs (yeah I called them that) right now. Thanks to a friend, I understand Jeff Fisher. He has no control of his damn team. Several games this season, this bum ass team decides they want to fight their opposition. FOR WHAT? Is that supposed to fire up the team? In at least 4 of the games I saw they got in fights and grabbed a plethora of penalties. No control whatsoever. NONE. I understand this team has no QB, yeah no quarterback and I guess those draft picks are looking nicer every day. Thanks Washington.
  6. Mizzou football will be in great shape, the day they get a different coach. Pinkel can’t win big games. He sucks bad. Last 2 conference championship games he’s been in, he gets smoked. Then has no idea how that ever happened. However, Mizzou had an unforgettable season, can’t take away what they did.
  7. Speaking of Mizzou, shoutout to CBS Sports for having a Mizzou Saturday…great win for the Men’s program beating 18th-ranked UCLA.
  8. Cano and Ellsbury got paid. I still hate Cano.
  9. Good bye, Roy Halladay. Halladay announced his retirement after 16 seasons. I will never forget his 2010 season, Halladay threw a perfect game and then a no-hitter in the postseason. Shame he didn’t get a ring while in Philly. He had no chance in Toronto. NONE.
  10. The death of Total Nonstop Action Wrestling is near, they lost their biggest acquisition in AJ Styles.
  11. Please Daniel Snyder, do us all a favor and put Mike Shanahan out of his misery.
  12. Rudy Gay going to the Sacramento Kings does nothing for them. You got a bighead jackass in DeMarcus Cousins. Unless both can work together as a tandem, I don’t think it will work out in Sac-town.
  13. The Super Bowl being in New York City is hilarious…you asked for this one. “Cold weather is where the game is supposed to be.” Because of this, now you have restrictions. No tailgate parties at Meadowlands Stadium. Enjoy.
  14. Keith Olbermann (whom I have caused a response with on Twitter) had this to say about cheating. I hear a lot about it. Shoutout to Solomon Alexander for this but it’s great. Enjoy. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5N1XoJq_fk

That’s all I can think of for now.

More to come.

The A-Train

Don’t forget N The Zone TV is coming soon and Beyond The Ropes podcast is LIVE every Monday night after Raw.

The A-Train Rant 13.0!

296958_1545752100335_1731016917_773274_1225805634_n1.jpg

It’s the weekend and I have some things that need to be said…

  1. Jason Kidd coaching the Brooklyn Nets is like Whoopi Goldberg’s character Eddie coaching the New York Knicks…it’s a joke.
  2. Chris Petersen is a great hire for Washington, he’ll start stealing those Pac-12 recruits from USC, UCLA and Oregon.
  3. Might have to start watching the 2014 World Cup, if not, I should start playing FIFA.
  4. Maybe Jay-Z is a smart guy after all. Kudos to him netting former New York Yankees 2nd baseman Robinson Cano a $240 million deal with the Seattle Mariners. Maybe Cano might humble himself after all in a new uniform. Then again, it’s Robinson Cano. Shoutout to Stephen A. Smith for calling out the Yankees on First Take. (NOTE: I rarely watch that show)
  5. Watched Bulls/Heat last night…I guess it’s one of those times the Heat plays like crapola before turning it up in the month of April.
  6. I really want Mizzou to win the SEC Championship just to see how screwy the BCS gang will be towards them.
  7. Curtis Granderson got $60 million from the New York Mets…Hey Mets management, how did that deal with Jason Bay work out? Curt, make your money! If you screw the Mets, I love every minute of it.
  8. Gary Kubiak getting fired from the Houston Texans was understandable, but don’t fire the man when he just got off a stroke. I don’t care how big or how small it was. Damn. I guess 11 straight losses made sure he got that ax quick.
  9. To the gamer who cussed during the middle of a game on NBA 2K14…do that again, it was hilarious.
  10. I want to see how the Downtown Athletic Club treats Jameis Winston now that he is not charged…My race card is ready to pulled if he doesn’t win the Heisman. He’s the favorite. Johnny Manziel and A.J. McCarron can both go to hell.
  11. I actually miss Lovie Smith. It’s time for him to get back in the saddle as head coach for a team…maybe the Houston Texans come to mind. I don’t know.
  12. I would actually laugh if the Miami Heat trade Dwyane Wade.
  13. What was the point of the Indianapolis Colts getting Trent Richardson? I’ll leave that for YOU to answer.
  14. DeMarcus Cousins should have no reason saying anything about anybody. You play for the Sacramento Kings dude, the Kings.
  15. What happened to the St. Louis Blues? Please EA, be correct on this prediction.
  16. So…is Kobe coming back?

That will wrap up this rant for today. More to come. Make sure you tune in to “Beyond The Ropes” on Youtube, comes on every Monday night after Raw. It’s LIVE and you can chat with the crew.

N The Zone TV is coming soon. You don’t want to miss that either.

The A-Train