SURPRISE!! Another Guy You’ve Never Heard Of Won The U.S. Open

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Brooks Koepka. Tommy Fleetwood. Xander Schauffele. Brian Harman. Stop me when I get to someone you’ve heard of before. If you were 1 of the 6 people watching the U.S. Open yesterday, you probably know who these guys are. As for the rest of you, I’m betting you couldn’t pick them out of a lineup. They would be 4 of the top 5 finishers at this year’s U.S. Open. The other? Hideki Matsuyama. Oh..you’ve never heard of him either? I was giving you too much credit. Sorry.

Brooks Koepka pulled away from the field on Sunday, with 3 birdies in a row on the back-9 (holes 14-16). Koepka finished at -16, winning his 1st Major. Koepka’s -16 is tied for the lowest score to par in U.S. Open history (Rory Mcilroy – 2011). Mcilroy, golf’s #2 ranked golfer, missed the cut this year. As did golf’s #1 and #3 ranked golfers. Mcilroy has now missed the cut in consecutive U.S Opens. This says a lot about the state of golf.

This marks the 7th consecutive year the U.S. Open has been won by a 1st-time Major winner. This ALSO says a lot about the state of golf. Without Tiger Woods, or a notable superstar, golf is fairly unwatchable. Die-hard golf fans will always be there, watching every tournament no matter who’s on the leaderboard. But I’m not talking about the die-hard fans. I’m talking about the casual golf fans, ya know the ones every sport needs to keep their bank accounts overflowing.

Golf is starving for its next great superstar.

Since when does FOX cover golf by the way?! And since when does Joe Buck do golf?! I thought their coverage was atrocious. I know Fox signed a 12-year contract to cover the U.S. Open back in 2015, but we need a breach of contract over here. Pleaseeee. I know golf is struggling, but do they think Joe Buck screaming BRIAN HARMAN FOR THE BIRDIE is going to help matters?? Newsflash, this is golf, not an NFL Sunday with Aaron Rodgers dropping back to pass!! Joe, as talented of an announcer as you are, we can tell you don’t know anything about golf. You sound like you’re reading off a list of stats and facts about each golfer. I have an idea. Why don’t we take some of that $15 million you’re worth, and get you some golf lessons. What do you say?? It may help retain those 6 viewers.

Like the majority of sports fans, I won’t watch another golf tournament until the 2017 Open Championship (British Open). Mark July 20th through the 23rd on your calendar to see who will hoist the Claret Jug at Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Southport, England. Or don’t. Either way. Either way is fine. For golf’s sake, I hope Phil Mickelson plays and golf’s top golfers make the cut this time. I don’t really want to watch Trey Mullinax win his 1st Major. Oh no, he is a real person. I didn’t make him up. He is ranked 373rd in the world, and just finished tied for 9th (-8) at the U.S. Open. It’s not Mr. Mullinax’s fault, but his success is the reason why golf is struggling.

I don’t see golf’s savior anywhere on the horizon….

Did you watch the U.S. Open?? How many golf tournaments do you watch each year??

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. You can also follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!

    

Holy Hail Mary!

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Week 13 in the NFL kicked off Thursday Night with an NFC North battle between the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions.  The Lions were looking to sweep the season series against the Packers for the first time since 1991 and looked to build on their 3-game winning streak.  If you turned the game on anytime around halftime, you probably turned it right off.  If you did, I feel sorry for you because you missed one of the greatest finishes to a football game we’ve seen in years.  Yes, the Lions were winning  20-0 in the 3rd quarter, but the Aaron Rodgers led Packers stormed back into the game in the 2nd half.  And with 6 seconds left in the game, the Packers were down by 2 (23-21), on their own 21-yard line, and had time for seemingly one more play.  Rodgers threw a 19-yard pass that got laterelled back and forth a few times until the ball ended up back in his hands.  A Lions defender caught up to Rodgers and brought him down with no time left on the clock.  But wait, what is this?!  That’s right a penalty flag for a facemask against the defense.  Devin Taylor was called for an EXTREMELY QUESTIONABLE facemask penalty while bringing Rodgers down to the ground.  This allowed the Packers to run one last, untimed play from their own 39-yard line.

If you haven’t seen this unbelieveable play yet, follow the link below to YouTube to watch it.

As you can see, Aaron Rodgers ran around to avoid tacklers and launched a pass from his 35-yard line.  This Hail Mary landed in the hands of his brother from another mother Richard Rodgers for a game winning, 61-yard touchdown.  Obviously, allowing a Hail Mary is inexcusable, but there is always more than one play that contributes to blowing a 20-point lead in the 2nd half.

The Lions defense fell apart in the 2nd half.  The Packers four scoring drives only took a combined 9 minutes and 6 seconds.  That may not sound impressive, but if you think about it, that’s 4 pretty quick touchdowns.  And, in my opinion, the turning point in the game was the Matthew Stafford fumble in the 3rd quarter.  The Packers had just scored a touchdown and then you hand all the momentum over to the Packers with a costly turnover.  You can’t do that Mr. Stafford!

In the end, the Rodgers-to-Rodgers connection was the difference, and the Packers’ NFC North title chances remain alive and well (standing at 8-4).  As for the Lions, well they look a lot like the Lions.

Was this the craziest ending to a football game you’ve ever seen??  Let me know in the comment section below.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!

Championship Weekend Is Upon Us

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Something spectacular is about to happen.  After four grueling months, only four of the NFL’s best teams remain.  And with the Lombardi Trophy in their grasp, it is going to take an incredible feat, by a still unknown hero, to earn a trip to Glendale, Arizona and an appearance in Super Bowl XLIX.  We could see the ‘passing of the torch’ from a hall of fame quarterback to a future hall of famer.  Or we could see an opportunity for the first back-to-back championships in 10 years.  No matter what happens, history is about to be made.  I think we are going to witness two unbelievable football games, and I wouldn’t be surprised by any outcome, so sit back, relax, and enjoy the show!

NFC Championship

Green Bay Packers vs. *Seattle Seahawks – Sunday @ 3:05 P.M. (FOX)

* – Indicates Home Team

The Packers and Seahawks will meet for the second time this season in the NFC Championship.  The first meeting didn’t go so well for the Packers, as they were blown out 36-16 in Week 1.  Revenge should play a slight factor, but the outcome of this game rests primarily on the calf of Aaron Rodgers.  If he is healthy enough to keep the Seahawks’ tenacious defense in check, they have a shot, however, if he is only 70% of himself, the Packers are in for a long afternoon.  Another key to this game is Marshawn Lynch versus the Packers run defense.  The Packers were 23rd in the league in rushing yards allowed this season (119.9 ypg), while the Seahawks were the number one rushing team (172.6 ypg).  Despite all the evidence to support a Seahawks victory, I think Aaron Rodgers is going to give us one of the grittiest performances we’ve ever seen.  Also, expect Jordy Nelson to wake up after a lackluster performance in the Divisional Round, and show Richard Sherman a thing or two.  Home/Road splits be damned.  Give me the Packers, in the upset, squeezing out a 1 point victory.

Prediction: Packers 28 – Seahawks 27 

AFC Championship

Indianapolis Colts vs. *New England Patriots – Sunday @ 6:40 P.M. (CBS)

* – Indicates Home Team

Oh Bill Belichick, as much as I dislike your sweatshirt and your general attitude towards everyone, I have to give you credit.  You are the best coach in the NFL.  You and Tom Brady are Greg Popovich and Tim Duncan.  Thirteen years have gone by, you haven’t aged, your productivity is still top notch, and just when everyone counts you out, you remind them why you’re still the best.  I guess cranky, surly head coach plus humble superstar is a decent combination.  I digress.  Just like the NFC, the AFC Championship is a repeat matchup of a lopsided affair (NE 42 – Indy 20) from earlier in the year.  You will remember, however, that was the game where Jonas Gray ran for 201 yards and 4 touchdowns, so expect this Sunday’s game to be a lot closer.  Andrew Luck’s game also took another step forward this season, as he led the league in touchdowns, but Luck will need to come up with a performance for the ages if the Colts are going to take down Goliath.  The other key to this game will be limiting “The Gronk”.  He can’t be stopped completely, but if the Colts can keep him out of the end zone, that’ll give them a fighting chance.  Unfortunately for all of us bitter Jets fans out there, I expect Tom Brady and the Patriots to make their 6th Super Bowl appearance in 14 years.

Prediction: Patriots 31 – Colts 28

Who do you have in this year’s Super Bowl??  Let me know in the comment section below.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!

NFL Divisional Playoffs Kick-Off Saturday

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This is the best weekend of the year.  If you had somewhere to go, cancel your plans, because that groove on the couch misses you.  I know it’s been hard to stay “into it” since your fantasy team was officially eliminated from contention, but it’s time to gear up for playoff football.  The schedule is as follows:

Baltimore Ravens vs. *New England Patriots – Saturday @ 4:35 P.M. (NBC)

Carolina Panthers vs. *Seattle Seahawks – Saturday @ 8:15 P.M. (FOX)

Dallas Cowboys vs. *Green Bay Packers – Sunday @ 1:05 P.M. (FOX)

Indianapolis Colts vs. *Denver Broncos – Sunday @ 4:40 P.M. (CBS)

* – Indicates Home Team

If the Ravens and Patriots matchup is giving you deja vu, you are not the only one.  This is the fourth time in six years that these teams will face each other in the postseason.  And while the Patriots have the best postseason record of any team since the turn of the century (18-8), the Ravens have been Tom Brady’s kryptonite.  Joe Flacco and the Ravens have beaten the Patriots in two of their last three trips to Foxboro.  As much as I would enjoy seeing that trend continue, I believe the Gronkanator and the Pats will be too much for the Ravens to handle.

Prediction: Patriots 27 – Ravens 21        

Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers will look to keep their momentum going as they venture to CenturyLink Field on Saturday.  The Panthers are looking to become the first team ever to advance to the Conference Championships after having a losing record during the regular season (7-8-1).  The Seahawks were 7-1 at home this season, and will look to continue that trend with their usual formula: ground and pound + violent defense = more points than the other team.  If the Panthers are going to have any chance in this game, they’ll need Cam Newton to do his best Superman impression.  Unfortunately, I don’t see that happening.  Expect a defensive struggle in the first half, and then the Seahawks should pull away late in the game.

Prediction: Seahawks 26 – Panthers 17  

As we transition to Sunday, expect the best game of the Divisional Round to come from the frozen tundra; aka Lambeau Field.  This is a product of matchups.  Demarco Murray, if healthy, should run all over the Packers less than stellar defensive line.  However, Aaron Rodgers, if healthy, should have a field day with the Cowboys secondary.  This matchup marks the first time in NFL Playoff history that an undefeated team at home (Green Bay 8-0) will host an undefeated team on the road (Dallas 8-0).  Murray is the Cowboys only chance at victory, because as good as Tony Romo is, he is not winning a shootout against his counterpart.  The soon to be MVP (Rodgers) should be able to will his team to victory with or without a torn calf.  I see the Packers edging out the Cowboys in a thriller.

Prediction: Packers 28 – Cowboys 27

And to wrap up a great weekend in football, Andrew Luck will march in to Denver to take on Peyton Manning and the Broncos.  Everyone can talk about how ordinary Peyton has looked over the last month, and how bad he is in the playoffs, but I am not ready to give up on the first family of football.  Andrew Luck is a phenomenal talent, and I expect him to be great for 10 more years, but this is not his year.  This Colts team is not strong enough defensively to stop Peyton Manning, and their running game has simply crumbled.  They have left Andrew Luck on an island.  I hope this game is close, but I see Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas, Julius Thomas, and Emmanuel Sanders being too much for the Colts to handle.

Prediction: Broncos 34 – Colts 24

What do you think?  Who do you have advancing to the Conference Championships?

Let me know in the comment section below.

Since you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!

One Liner Friday’s

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Hello and welcome back to another edition of One Liner Friday’s. Here you can find the past week in sports wrapped up in one line and one line only. Enjoy!!

Hey what do you know, Bill Belichick does have a heart.

I was actually starting to wonder if he was a robot.

Has anyone seen that picture of Tyson Chandler in a pair of shorts?

Forget one line, I have one word for Tyson Chandler : SQUATS!

I know virtually no one has noticed, but we must be in bizarro world because the U.S. Men’s Soccer team has won 9 games in a row!

Dear Derek Rose, I love the confidence, but you must be high as a kite to say that you are the best player in the NBA.

We all know you didn’t play any games last year, but apparently you didn’t watch any games either.

The Hefty Lefty shot a remarkable final round 66 to win the Open Championship, I’m just glad there were no tents in his way this year.

From now on, I think Tiger Woods should wear Pink on Sundays.

Is anyone else tired of hearing about A-Rod?

Here, I will be taking a stand against the meaningless A-Rod drivel that everyone else is pushing.

I will give you one last line: he cheated and lied, but he’s clearly The Yankees best option at 3rd base so play him until he gets suspended.

Isn’t it sad though that The Yankees are going to rely on Alfonso Soriano to be their savior?

Wait a minute, Alfonso Soriano, Derek Jeter, Andy Pettite, and Mariano Rivera, where is Chuck Knoblauch when you need him?

Lebron left his city, now he’s turning his back on his own country, what’s next? (Maybe he’ll move to Canada)

Ryan Braun bet his life and he’s still alive and Aaron Rodgers bet his salary and he’s still living large, let’s bring out the electric chair so we can move on with our day. #welchonabet

Matt Ryan gets paid!!!!!!

Apparently winning 1 career playoff game is the new benchmark for a $100 million dollar contract.

So big hits at the college level are now cause for ejection, I’m glad the NCAA is attempting to completely ruin another aspect of their game, what a shocker.

They might as well put tutu’s on these guys and let them hit each other with pillows.

Football is a violent sport, let’s leave it that way!!

Speaking of football, Jaws must be sharing Derek Rose’s stash if he thinks Joe Flacco and Matt Ryan are both better than Drew Brees.

On a serious note: I feel horrible for Tim Hudson, who over the past 15 years has been one of the most solid and consistent pitchers in all of baseball.

I feel really bad that he got injured the way he did, and I hope he is able to return to form and pitch in the Major League’s again.

The Mets are not just ruining their own players careers, but have now figured out how to ruin their opponents careers too.

Jaromir Jagr was born during World War II, and he is still playing in the NHL; amazing.

With the start of training camp it’s time to get excited about football, but I think it’s cute that Jets fans are actually convinced that they can win 9 games this year.

4 spot, if they’re lucky.

Have a nice weekend everybody!!

If you enjoy my writing, follow me over to intheneutralzone.com where I am a contributing author there as well. Also you can follow me on twitter @DaveEttinger2 or like me on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/DaveTalksSports. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it!