Sunday State of Mind: May 13th-June 19th

It’s a special Juneteenth and Father’s Day edition of SSM.

Only one place to start, and that’s out in The Bay
The Warriors are champions again as of Thursday
Steph Curry was the MVP, a well earned award
The stupid “No Steph with KD” talk can now be ignored

The Colorado Avalanche are the perfect name
The Lightning are the target, and they’ve got perfect aim
Up 2-0 in the series, looking absolutely tough
Only two wins away from hoisting Lord Stanley’s Cup

The Atlanta Braves, 14-game winning streak
Weekend series in Chicago, Cubbies looking bleak
Baseball did the baseball thing, Cubs won the series
After losing 10 in a row, beat Atlanta two of three

Sunday State of Mind: May 6th-June 12th

Guess who’s back? SSM, that’s who.

We’ve got our first pink slip handed out in MLB
The Angles fired Joe Maddon during a losing spree
The Halos started strong this year, formerly first place
Twelve straight losses gets you canned, an unfortunate case

Another manager made waves, and not the calming kind
Tony La Russa made a move and seemed to lose his mind
Gave Trea Turner a free base, the count was 1-2
Any way you look at it, that call really blew

The NBA Finals are tight, all tied at two a piece
Both teams are two wins away from making the series cease
Steph Curry’s a monster, but we all knew that
He’s all the Warriors have, rest of the team’s been flat

The battle for Lord Stanley is now set in stone
Lightning and the Avalanche for the hockey throne
Tampa Bay will go for their third straight championship
Colorado’s young, could be champs in their first trip

Sunday State of Mind: May 30th-June 5th

The weather has turned as we are past the unofficial opening of summer. The beautiful forecast calls for some beautiful sports poetry.

The NBA Finals, Boston and The Bay
Warriors and Celtics are here to play
Al Horford and the boys took game one on the road
If they win again tonight Draymond might explode

Capital One’s The Match, the QB edition
Four of our top quarterbacks in the competition
Brady, Rodgers, Patty, Josh, young guns verse the old
ARod and TB12 took it to them for the gold

Baseball staying relevant, thanks to the NFL
Tommy Pham’s a wildcard, we’re saying “what the hell?”
Who hasn’t wanted to slap a fellow league member
Fantasy football means a lot, Tommy’s got a temper

Avalanche and Rangers, not a lot of spoilers
Both looking for a sweep against the Lightning and the Oilers
Only a few shots left for Tampa and Edmonton
If they don’t get it in gear both squads will soon be done

Sunday State of Mind: May 9th-May 15th

Photo: New Atlas

We were drowning in series-deciding games in the NBA Playoffs this weekend. Eliminations and game sevens were flying everywhere this week, and SSM is here for it.

Got started on Thursday night, Heat and 76ers
Joel Embiid came back but could not be Philly’s fixer
Jimmy Butler showed up, James Harden disappeared
Both teams said things after the game that were kinda weird

For the Memphis Grizzlies, Friday night was it
The Warriors are back to being the absolute shit
Klay and Steph were back up to their old splash brother ways
Going to the conference finals, hitting threes for days

Sunday was a big one, two game sevens on the slate
Bucks and the Celtics were the first game on our sports plate
This one was at The Garden, and Boston held their ground
With the win the Celtics, are now Miami bound

The finale of the weekend, Suns and the Mavs
Dallas is full of grown up cows, no more baby calves
A tough matchup awaits them, the Warriors are no joke
With Luka and J. Brunson, this team is far from broke

Sunday State of Mind: April 25th-May 1st

Photo: CNN

A jam-packed sports schedule lends itself to a few reminders here and there. That’s what SSM is for, you’re welcome.

The picking of the prospects, the NFL Draft
Fans getting new players finding out how their roster’s staffed
Draft grades make no sense, have to give these guys some time
To see if they’ll be good or bad, substandard or sublime

Round two NBA Playoffs are starting today
Eight teams left, four East four West, still able to play
Injuries aplenty, still plenty guys to see
Best time of the year NBA fans will all agree

Major League Baseball dropped the damn hammer
Threw out pitcher Trevor Bauer in the baseball slammer
A two year suspension, for some bad off field stuff
Search it at your own risk, it is pretty rough

Sunday State of Mind: April 18th-April 24th

Another week come and gone, another Sunday State of Mind.

An always touching tribute, a statue was revealed
This week in Oklahoma this one should have stayed concealed
Poor Baker Mayfield, guy can’t catch a break
If I were him that statue would have ended up in a lake

Big loss in Chicago, Eloy Jimenez
Out for up to two months, so the doctor says
Add another name to the White Sox injury list
Tough break for a good team, that bat will be missed

A happier baseball note, it’s Miguel Cabrera
Joined the 3k hit club, maybe the last in this era
Only 32 other players have reached that career mark
Miggy one of the greatest to do it at the ballpark

NBA playoffs are here, and some teams are in trouble
Raptors, Bulls, Nets and Nuggets are all on the bubble
Mavs and Jazz, Grizz and Wolves both sitting at 2-2
We get action everyday as the games continue

If you’ve ever read this blog, you know we love NASCAR
Driving for 500 miles but not going far
The most famous track in all of motor sports
The Talladega Speedway, running today of course

Sunday State of Mind: February 28th-March 6th

It’s Sunday, there were sports this week, and we’re in a certain State of Mind.

A special week in Indy, the NFL Combine
A chance for NFL prospects to jump, run, and shine
Some major workout numbers, athletic freaks galore
NFL coaches and GMs jaws dropping to the floor

Surprise news out of Dallas about one of their best
Amari Cooper likely gone, Cowboys fans must be stressed
The wideout’s too expensive for Jerry Jones’ liking
So now their number one receiver will be gone, sent hiking

Still in a holding pattern in the MLB
The lockout continues as both sides will not agree
On a new CBA, games continue to be lost
The longer this goes on, more baseball games get tossed

We talked last week about big scores in the NBA
Repeating this week, Jayson Tatum and LBJ
JT scored 54 tonight, Bron 56 on Saturday
Defenses sat on the sideline and watched the big dogs play

We’ve got our first few tickets punched in the NCAA
March Madness is so close, let’s get this underway
Murray State, Longwood, and Loyola Chicago
You know what that means; Sister Jean’s ready to roll!

A Tradition Unlike Any Other – NBA “City Edition” Jersey Analysis

Look at all those beauts.

A great start to the week for all of us uniform analysts out there. The NBA dropped their 2021-2022 “City Edition” jerseys on Monday. One of our favorite traditions around here is being completely uninformed fashion critics. As we did last season, we are here once again to provide commentary that no one asks for or needs.

Atlanta Hawks – pretty clean. Yellow sucks as a main color but the “Atlanta” font has a nice throwback feel.
Boston Celtics – these looks like a team whose uniform budget ran out of white thread to fill in the letters and numbers.
Brooklyn Nets – always a good idea to throw back to the Jason Kidd/Richard Jefferson/Kenyon Martin era. Turns out the Nets Big 3 in the early aughts might end up being better than their current Big 3.
Charlotte Hornets – if you are privy to migraines, don’t dig too deep into these bad boys.
Chicago Bulls – the throwback font on “Chicago” is cool, but the basic number font doesn’t pair well, be better Bulls.

Cleveland Cavaliers – at time of writing, the Cavs have yet to post about their City Edition jerseys; simply shocking that an organization so well run would miss something like this. If you really want to get an idea, go watch Hoosiers.

Dallas Mavericks – not a bad effort here. Just surprising that the player they chose to model is never healthy enough to wear any of their uniforms.
Denver Nuggets – not only are these fun, but educational! I liked that Denver incorporated the ABA ball, and had no idea before today that their old logo was a miner. Also, the rainbow/mountain look always plays for the Nuggets in the uniform game.

Detroit Pistons – aren’t these pretty much just…their normal uniforms with the colors flipped? Only redeeming quality here is a that hint of Grant Hill era green/turquoise on the shorts.

Golden State Warriors – same vibes as the Pistons here for me. These are basically jerseys we’ve seen before, with one saving grace: the “splash” feature is awesome.
Houston Rockets – these are slick. I always liked the Barkley/Pippen/early Yoa Ming era Rockets jerseys, and it’s a nice touch incorporating that with their current logo on the shorts without it looking dumb.
Indiana Pacers – my answer to the above tweet? That these are only temporary.
Los Angeles Clippers – wowzers these are clean. Nothing crazy, crisp letter & number font, great shade of baby blue. Not many wins for the Clips so far this year, but this is one.
Los Angeles Lakers – “lost” is an appropriate word the Lakers used in the above tweet. I get what they were going for here, but I think it’s a miss. If you’re one of the most storied franchises in NBA history and you City Edition jersey looks like the Charlotte Hornets Starter pullover jacket we all had in the 90’s, you missed.
Memphis Grizzlies – anytime you have the opportunity to lean into some of the greatest uniforms of all time, you need to take it. Opportunity squandered.

Miami Heat – year in and year out, the Heat are at the top of any type of alternate uniform list, and nothing changes here. The ability to pull off all of the neon blues, pinks, etc. puts them at an unfair advantage. Excellent as usual.

Milwaukee Bucks – kind of cool, I guess. The side panel with all of the greens and purple works, but another weird letter/number font combo.
Minnesota Timberwolves – Kevin Garnett would be proud, and so am I. Nice and easy look, the accent trees on the belt and shorts, with the throwback font as a cherry on top.
New Orleans Pelicans – looks like the Pelicans and Pistons share the same design team. This is just their normal jerseys, right?
Oklahoma City Thunder – “Welcome to Create a Team on NBA2K22, this is the first screen where you start designing your team’s uniforms!”
Orlando Magic – one of life’s most intriguing questions; what is with the Orlando Magic’s infatuation with the color orange?

Philadelphia 76ers – nice 70’s ABA vibe here. The multi-colored side panel gives off a little Nuggets/rainbow feature as well.

Phoenix Suns – the Suns haven’t posted about their City Edition jerseys at time of writing. But, it doesn’t appear they changed anything from last year. Those were perfect, so if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Portland Trailblazers – not a huge stray away from their normal threads, but this still plays. How about the argyle-ish side panel, when was the last time we saw that on an NBA uniform?

Sacramento Kings – the lion logo is above par, the rest is fine. I’m going to use my joke from last year’s review (because it was so hilarious), I can see thousands of bros at Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza rocking these bad boys solely because is has β€œsac” on it, which is approval enough for me.

San Antonio Spurs – all in on these. Bright colors really work when teams try to think outside of the box on uniforms, and the Spurs’ color history works perfect for this.

Toronto Raptors – the Raptors kind of have a Magic/orange obsession with gold; very random. But you have to give some points here for the old school logo. A dinosaur dribbling a basketball, how absurd.

Utah Jazz – no social media post, and based on the picture above it doesn’t look like the Jazz put too much effort into their City Edition jerseys this year, sad!

Washington Wizards – ending with a winner here. Fairly basic design, love the font from the Washington B*llets days. Well done in our nation’s capital.

Another year, another mediocre City Edition jersey review. This is a fun thing the NBA does every year, and while I’m sure they love the conversation and extra dollars that come with it, the misses are almost always as good as the hits.

Who Wore it Best? 19-10

Photo: Dr. Odd

The finish line is in sight on our recurring series “Who Wore It Best.” In our penultimate edition, we’re getting into the teens.

19 – Johnny Unitas

Starting off young, fresh, and hip. While 19 turns out to be an incredibly strongly represented number, Unitas is widely known as one of the best quarterbacks to ever play in the NFL. Four championships, three MVPs, and a member of all three of the 50th, 75th and 100th NFL Anniversary Teams gives Johnny U the nod.

Honorable Mentions: Tony Gwynn, Willis Reed, Steve Yzerman, Jonathan Toews

18 – Peyton Manning

Photo: CBS

Back to back Colts quarterbacks to get us started here. A member of the most recent Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee class, Manning put up some unreal numbers en route to two Super Bowl wins. Manning’s trophy case is busting at the seams with five MVPs, the 2012 Comeback Player of the Year Award, and number retirement plaques for his number 18 in both Indianapolis and Denver.

Honorable Mention: Denis Savard

17 – Todd Helton

Photo: Fansided

Todd Helton played baseball and football at University of Tennessee, and was a teammate of Peyton Manning’s. However, Helton makes our list for his accomplishments on the diamond. Helton retired in 2013 with a career average of .316, 369 home runs, and 2,519 hits. Along the way, he won three Gold Gloves, four Silver Sluggers, and a batting title in 2000.

Honorable Mention: Philip Rivers

16 – Joe Montana

Photo: Esquire

Much like Unitas, Montana is a firm part of the “best quarterback of all-time” conversation. Montana lead the 49ers to four Super Bowl rings, while being the MVP in three of those four wins. One of the more accurate quarterbacks of his time, he lead the NFL in completion percentage five separate seasons.

Honorable Mentions: Whitey Ford, Brett Hull

15 – Bart Starr

If we’re including Johnny Unitas, it’s only fair to involve Bart Starr. The quarterback who lead the Packers to victories in Super Bowls I and II, while winning MVP in both games, finished his career with five championships, a regular season MVP award, and four Pro Bowls.

Honorable Mentions: Carlos Beltran, Jim Edmonds

14 – Pete Rose

Photo: Time

Taking a bit of gamble including Rose on our list, but here we are. The all-time hit king (4,256) does have a stellar on-field resumΓ©. Seventeen All-Star games, three World Series rings, the 1973 NL MVP, and two Gold Gloves.

Honorable Mentions: Ernie Banks, Oscar Robertson, Dan Fouts

13 – Wilt Chamberlain

Photo: SB Nation

Of course the only man to score 100 points in an NBA game is making our list. Wilt the Stilt averaged a silly 30.9 points per game and 22.9 rebounds per game over his 15 year career. He also won two rings, four MVPs, was a seven time scoring champion, as well as an 11 time rebound champion.

Honorable Mentions: Alex Rodriguez, Dan Marino

12 – Tom Brady

Photo: Amazon

The greatest quarterback of all time at the most important position in sports. TB12’s resumΓ© is too long to outline here; but it’s headlined by his seven Super Bowl rings. On top of that, Brady has lead the league at one point in his career in passing touchdowns, yards, and rating.

Honorable Mentions: John Stockton, Terry Bradshaw, Roger Staubach, Jim Kelly, Joe Namath, Bob Griese, Aaron Rodgers, Jarome Iginla

11 – Mark Messier

Being the center piece of a dynasty goes a long way in lists like these. Messier was the unquestioned leader & captain in Edmonton, where he lead the Oilers to five Stanley Cups. He also became the only player to captain two separate teams to Stanley Cup victories when he lead the Rangers to the cup in 1994.

Honorable Mentions: Barry Larkin, Larry Fitzgerald

10 – Fran Tarkenton

Fran Tarkenton walked to Steve Young, Michael Vick, and the like could run. Not only did Tarkenton sling it for 47,003 yards and 342 touchdowns, he also ran for 3,674 yards and 32 touchdowns in his career. Another fun fact: his only MVP season came in 1975, his 15th year in the NFL.

Honorable Mentions: Walt Frazier, Guy Lafleur

Heavy quarterback representation here. Any other noise was a faint whisper from baseball. Abysmal showing by hockey and basketball. We’ll bid farewell to our ongoing series in the next edition of “Who Wore It Best.”

Kevin Durant and Draymond Green Sat Down For an All Time Interview

Photo: YouTube

This was incredible.

Draymond Green dropped his latest episode of “Chips,” his interview series on Bleacher Report on Wednesday. This was a special one, as he sat down with former teammate and fellow chip-on-shoulder haver Kevin Durant. The best player in the NBA was open, introspective, and refreshing in the 24-minute video released on YouTube.

Off the jump, KD’s headgear selection was intriguing. You have to wonder if the selection of an Oakland A’s hatΒ was a tip of the cap (bad joke) to Warriors fans for his time in the Bay. Even if it wasn’t on purpose, it was ironic.

Despite being teammates on back-to-back championship teams, in today’s environment, the pair are probably better known for their blowout argument (start’s at about 0:56 in the link) that went fully viral. It does appear the two got over the argument, and rather quickly. KD made an interesting comparison between their “conversation” and the infamous Scottie Pippen sitting out incident; saying it was better to “get all that shit out” in the moment instead of letting anything fester. Can’t say I disagree with him.

Another subject Green breached with The Slim Reaper was his apparent change in personality between his clean, “kid who wears the book bag” he was assigned while in Oklahoma City to what we’ve seen since then. In terms of the much maligned career move of leaving the Thunder to join the Warriors, KD said “[i]t was a basketball decision, but I knocked it down to not giving a fuck.”

When discussing how his attitude change towards the media, he also provided compelling openness in admitting he believed they knew more than he did. With age and experience, he was able to find more of himself; noting “the questions they ask me now don’t move me like they used to.” Another encouraging viewpoint of a person finding out more about who they are and not being afraid to be that person.

This interview included a man who seems to be at peace with the person he has become. When asked about his happiest professional moment, Durant expressed his dislike for the word “happy,” saying “it’s a fleeting feeling. I just want to enjoy every day being alive…I don’t want to chase happiness, I want to stay even.”

It was exceptional seeing a personable, accessible, and seemingly unburdened KD. I hope we get to see more of this in the future.