Evan Mellett: 00:03 Welcome back everybody to the 12th edition of the Sports Run On podcast. In this edition of the Sports Run On podcast, we will be starting out by talking about a bit– a sport that’s had a very big off-season and has had a lot of talk as of recently. The sport– the main sport we will be talking about today, that is the MBA. The MBA has had a lot of trades over the last, I’d say probably month, that have really shaped the MBA and shape a new MBA which is going to feel like, “oh my goodness”, like from last season to this upcoming season, is going to feel like two completely different worlds. Because you have players like Kawhi Leonard and Paul George going to the LA clippers, that just automatically makes them a title contender as you also see Anthony Davis being sent to the Los Angeles Lakers, with a trade having to do with Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and Josh Hart.
Evan Mellett: 01:06 With that, making them an absolute title contender and also making the Lakers another the title contender with getting AB and Boogie or DeMarcus Cousins off the– after he was injured with Warriors. So, getting him back is going to be a ginormous step forward for these Warriors. I mean, it’s going to be 01:27 [inaudible] Ford for the Lakers. Talking about the warriors, they also had a– not a huge pick up but one of the bigger pickups I’d like to thank in D’Angelo Russell. Now looking like Golden State might have three splash brothers coming back in next season being on contracts with it being Curry, Klay Thompson and D’Angelo Russell coming back for them. And if you think those were all the trades that happened, you are far from it because as also one of the bigger one trades at the end of the year would be the sending of Russell Westbrook to Houston to play with James Harden.
Evan Mellett: 02:04 This is a very big deal in the fact that it’s going to– it automatically kind of makes– it doesn’t really make them a title contender because some people think, “oh, there’s going to be a crazy amount of problems between these two”. But I kind of disagree with that thought because I feel like you can definitely make an offense because people say these are two very ball dominant players, it’s hard for two ball dominant players that both like to take 30 to 40 shots a game to play with each other. I think I kind of disagree with that because of the fact that– just the fact that I feel like Mark Dantonio who I think is one of the better coaches in the NBA right now in my opinion, is going to be able to make an offense that can really make it work for both of them, it’s going to make– it’s going to be able to give them both. Instead of one is taking 40 shots and one taking 10 it can be a more even 35-25 than 40-10, something like that. Those aren’t really the only big trades.
Evan Mellett: 03:05 There have been many trades going around. Another one, sending Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, probably the most blockbuster of any trade, or probably up there with Paul George and Kawhi. But the thing about the KD, Kyrie trade, is KD after rushing his Achilles in the NBA Finals is not going to be back for a good while, with the fact– with him having come back from rehab for it being months and months before he’s able to play basketball again. Yes, they signed him to his max– then the Brooklyn Nets ended up signing him too, it was a four-year deal. So, they will get him for three of the four years and I mean, KD is like one of the best players if not in the NBA, and he’s probably besides LeBron, so I think he’ll definitely make a difference with him also adding Kyrie. Most people think at this point, that Kyrie is not going to really be able to shake up a lot because we’ve seen in Boston, who– where Kyrie was sent from Brooklyn too.
Evan Mellett: 04:01 We’re seeing that Kyrie was actually on exactly like when he thought that whenever he was being overshadowed by LeBron on the championship teams in Cleveland so he’s like, couple years ago he was like, “Oh, I need to leave this place, I need to go show them because I can run a team by myself”. Well, that kind of didn’t work out, which is why he recruited KD to come with him to the Brooklyn Nets and be able to make them a title contender, maybe not this year, but they’re definitely the team going forward, looking at the fact that these team– these players are two of the best in the entire world. And now, they haven’t really played together before, but now they are going to play together, and they could be a very dynamic duo. This is not the only thing that’s been going on in the sports world at this point. Also having to do with, well one of the other trades before we get into something else would be the Kemba Walker trade, which I forgot to mention. He is going to be sent to Boston, as I said, Kyrie has left Boston and has now been going to Brooklyn to team up with KD, but Boston is not all lost at this point.
Evan Mellett: 05:05 In this– well not Brooklyn trade, but I mean it was a Brooklyn like free agency and then Boston free agency, there are two sides to every story because the fact that you see the story of, “Yeah, Kyrie went to Brooklyn, so that’s definitely not in the Celtics favor”. But Kemba Walker then it’s like, “oh, we just got Kemba”, and Kemba can really make a difference especially playing with Marcus Smart, Gordon Hayward and the team that they have, because looking like they had a good team last year, Kemba Walker is a very good star, like he’s an all-star, very rightfully, he went to the All-Star game last year. So, I mean, I really think that he can still make a difference. But– and then looking at another one of the blockbuster trades, would be the trade of Russell Westbrook going to Houston, to play with James Harden. And the other side of that trade would be the fact that Chris Paul, who was kind of the sideman to James Harden, kind of passing the ball kind of sideman.
Evan Mellett: 06:04 Because Chris Paul, some people say he was good for James Harden, because he has kind of a “pass first” mentality. But, in that fact, he’s sending him to Oklahoma City, which he funny enough, actually started out and when the New Orleans and Oklahoma City had to combine after Katrina, after Hurricane Katrina hit in New Orleans, with all that said, he is going to go there and he’s looking like, if he stays there, because now they’re looking like, Oklahoma City they have some Paul George to the Clippers for many picks going forward because they have picks, maybe one or two picks. Like they’re doubling their picks for the next five or 10 years, like want to talk about a rebuilding process, like this is the biggest of any we’ve seen in a very long time. It’s crazy to think about how big this rebuilding process is honestly, when you think of the fact that they have like picks in the upcoming draft, in the upcoming three, where they in some cases, they have three picks per draft because of how much they got from giving Paul George away to the Los Angeles Clippers.
Evan Mellett: 07:16 I mean this is also not the only big story because also the FIFA World Cup is coming up, what is that? It’s kind of like the off-season basketball. It’s not the World Cup, but it’s the lead-up to the World Cup. And we’ve seen many players such as Anthony Davis, and now John Wall, he bowed out because of injury. And Anthony Davis, bowed out because he just didn’t want to, bowed out of this team, which was– this is kind of where the dream team was made, if you heard of that, with Larry Bird, MJ, and all those guys playing together, in magic, playing together to be able to win many gold medals. It’s kind of a lead up to the team and now you’re seeing many of these NBA stars just kind of bow out on it. They’re like, “we don’t really feel like going, I mean you don’t have to make us go, this isn’t really our thing”. Which I think is crazy. And instead of having like an all-time roster, you’re trying to throw some– not really throw some players together, but you’re trying to just put some players together to make it so that you’ll be able to just have a team and have a team that to be able to take down some of the others, because these are national teams.
Evan Mellett: 08:15 Now moving on to the other sport. This one is not starter season, they’re also the off-season but they’re a lot closer than the NBA is to coming around. This is the NFL. Camp is about to begin, there are many blank, crazy entrances coming in as Jalen Ramsey is coming in a truck, it’s just there’s so many crazy things. But there’s also, with camp there’s a lot of different variables with camp too, like who can go off, what’s going to happen, then you have the Giants looking like– or you have Giants and maybe a couple other teams looking for like maybe for a second quarterback at this point because you’re getting older. And then you have some players that aren’t even attending camp at all as I’ll get into and that player that I’m saying specifically is Melvin Gordon. As he’s still looking for a contract extension with the LA Chargers and it’s looking like he doesn’t know if he’ll get one, because he’s kind of going up to the chargers and saying, “I’m as good as AB and I want to AB money”.
Evan Mellett: 09:11 Yeah, it’s only in the difference of like 5 million a year, which is a lot of money, but it isn’t a lot of these pro athletes, but it’s kind of like more of a respect thing because like, “I’m as good as these guys and I’ve always been, I just don’t understand why you won’t give me the money that he does”. And the one thing that there is to talk about when it comes to the Le’Veon Bell situation is not everybody plays in New York, New York is a giant, absolutely ginormous market for sports as– LA is big, but there’s no place in the country that’s New York big. Because then that’s why people like KD, going back to the NBA, and Kyrie that’s why they’re going to New York because that’s where the money is, the Knicks, the Brooklyn, the Giants, the Jets, and that’s one of the reasons people are like, “Oh, why did Le’Veon go to the Jets? They’re absolutely awful”. Because that’s where the money is. I mean, that’s what these players want. They have a few years sometimes, in the NFL to go to make as much money as they can. And to be able to do that, they have to go to where the money is, where the big money is. And that big money for most sports is in New York whether it be MLB, NFL or NBA.
Evan Mellett: 10:17 But there is also another player that’s really upset with his contract and that would be Genovian Clowney who is a– he was a defensive end last year for the Houston Texans and he will be at camp. Well, he’s actually not going to end up showing up to camp because of the fact of him not having a contract. As you know, there are some players that are franchise tagged, one of those was– last year was Le’Veon Bell, how most like know what the franchise tag is, where you put the big money on the one player and that’s why Le’Veon sat out, because he got franchise tagged. With Clowney, it’s looking like out of most of the teams, Clowney is the only player who is, at this point in the year, after the post-season has not been offered a new contract. He hasn’t been offered like, “hey, we want to give you this much in this much and this much. And he’s like, “where’s the contract?”, there hasn’t really been anything said about it, which is why some people don’t blame him, why would you show up if there’s absolutely no chance that you’re going to get money if you do show up.
Evan Mellett: 11:16 And that’s just the point of this, there are people now taking like a Le’Veon Bell approach such as Melvin Gordon and Genovian Clowney because the fact of they’re not getting contracts, so they need to make sure that they get contracts they’re kind of going to hold out to go to the fact of, “Oh, we need you so badly, we’ll give you whatever money you want”. And it kind of forces the team owners and managers into like, a bad position. Because it’s like, we can’t let them go because anybody will pick them up and we won’t get anything from them. It’s like we just trade them, but I mean, some people think too, but that’s not what most people think to do. And then because then there’s the fact of like, they just put him in a really bad position of like, “we kind of have to pay him, because we’re not just going to let him go because we need that talent on our team, we got to win football games and that’s what we’re here to do”. Also speaking of the NFL, another training camp connection that we will want to see coming in is the Browns. Because everybody’s like, “oh, Brown’s going to the Super Bowl this year, this could be the big year for them”.
Evan Mellett: 12:15 And I mean, I agree with that somewhat because after the adding of Odell, him and Jarvis Landry and Baker that’s of course, yeah, that’s a lethal combo. Those are players that can really play out and I think they’re going to be great together. But I really, I don’t know how much that they can do if their defense isn’t there, it’s not going to matter, because they score 30, they might give up 40. So, I feel like no, they’re definitely going to have some there, so, I don’t feel like it’s definitely not going to be an Owen 16 season for the Browns. But am I on the trip of “Oh, yeah, they’re going to go in New England. They’re going to beat Tom Brady, and we’re going this is going to be the magical year that we’ve all been waiting for”, I don’t know. And I think that kind of just remains to be seen. And I feel like I’m not the only one who feels like that, where it’s like “oh, it still remains to be seen” kind a year because yeah, they’re a good talent but kind of like in the NBA, with Westbrook and Harden. They’re very good apart, but are they good together? Like, that’s what I’m saying, is Odell and Baker, is that connection just going to come naturally?
Evan Mellett: 13:13 Or is it going to be like it’s going to take a couple games, they’re going to throw a couple, they’re going to lose a couple and then they’re going to start out one in three and then if anything, maybe they get disjointed and it turns into like a five and 11 season like that’s possible. It’s possible for all teams but I mean, especially with new teams that are trying to add players or whenever they have players that are like very young like rookies like the Redskins and Dwayne Haskins hiring to come into a big role. It’s really going to be a question mark of, can they– do they have the chemistry this early? Or, is it going to I mean, if it takes a year, it takes a year but I mean, these guys want winning now. That’s why they signed these guys off the free agent market. Now moving over to another topic of football, it would be the NCAA, this is also 45 or under 45 days away from starting at this point. The NCAA, I do think is going to be a very interesting like, thing to watch because of how many new faces there are.
Evan Mellett: 14:11 With Justin Fields now starting for Ohio State, you have Jalen Hurts starting for Oklahoma coming from Alabama, just to name a few. I feel like whenever you– especially in college, if any more, it’s going to turn into a free agency because it’s turned in, “Oh, I can’t start here”, which is kind of what Jalen and Fields said because Jake Fromm is pretty much the starter for Georgia. Jalen feels like, “Oh, I can’t start here, but hey, Ohio State just had their quarterback graduate, I can go in there and they have a really young guy coming up as a sophomore. I’m like the best in the country. I can just come in and swoop that spot.”. Same thing with Hurts, as you see with Oklahoma, they’re having very good track record with having quarterbacks transfer in, then winning the Heisman with them. As you see Baker Mayfield who transferred in from Texas Tech to go on to win the Heisman, then you see Kyler Murray, who transferred in after a year at Texas A&M, who was transferred in to now go– who went to Oklahoma and then went on to win the Heisman and now is the number one pick in the draft. And also, having to add, both picks did go number one in their drafts.
Evan Mellett: 15:12 So, I mean you can’t really blame them, they’re kind of looking like a good central for transfer quarterbacks this point. But, and the only reason I really think and people knows, Hurts is doing this is not really because well, it’s because he lost his spot to a young underclassmen, which is to Tua Tagovailoa, who is undoubtedly one of the best quarterbacks in the country, in the NCAA, maybe behind Trevor Lawrence because I think he’s undoubtably after that absolute, like win. Like an absolute beat down, some people would call it of Alabama on the national championship game. It’s kind of crazy. It’s kind of hard to say or make an argument, “Oh, he’s not the best he got lucky”. It’s Alabama. It’s the best team in the country. I don’t know how lucky you can get when you beat them by so– like beat them so handily as they did to this team. But I just, I think it’s crazy. But I mean, and that’s what I’m saying, like how I talk about Alabama and Clemson. I just think it’s crazy how like the power five conferences, they’re still going to be there, like maybe you’ll have like a team like Texas maybe because they always have a good recruiting class.
Evan Mellett: 16:12 What I’m trying to get at, the teams are always going to be there, the same teams are usually going to be there, because if you’re good, a good season usually turns into a good recruiting class and a good recruiting class usually turns into seasons going forward. And that’s why people are like, “oh why is Alabama? Why is Georgia? Why is Texas? Why is Clemson? Why are they always in the Final Four or in the conversation?”. 16:35 [inaudible]. And the reason that is, is because the power is going to remain where it is if they keep getting their draft– if they keep getting the recruiting classes that they are because of just how good they are, because the recruiting classes are usually based on like how many five stars you get, how many four stars you get, and usually at the lowest how many three stars, if they’re at this high level football. And if you’re going off how many like recruits I get and that’s accurate of how much talent, that’s how much talent they’re getting each year and like, if Clemson’s getting most of the five star recruits in the country, you’re going to think, “oh, over the next four years, unless they leave or play a year and go to the NFL, they’re your top team coming up”.
Evan Mellett: 17:13 I mean, that’s kind of hard to think that they’re not your top team coming up, if anything whenever they have such an absolutely great recruiting class. Now after talking about MLB, I’m talking about NCAA, we’ll be talking about our last sport of the day, which we will be talking on this 12th edition of the podcast which will be the MLB. The MLB is now finishing up its all-star game and is looking like moving forward, kind of because it’s now moving into the end of the season, where I think some trades can happen because I mean, you’re going to try to like– I think there could be a lot of trade negotiations coming now because after your– you’re starting to see coming down as the season winds down. Who’s a contender for a World Series? And who isn’t? Like you can kind of see that the Dodgers are because they’re at 60 wins and then on the other hand, on the other side, they’re kind of like, teams with 15 wins, are probably not that bad. But there are teams that like, you know, for a fact, like 25 games back in their conference, they’re not going to win this one.
Evan Mellett: 18:12 They’re not going to win the World Series, or even make it to the playoffs, which is why these teams are better, and they’re like, “Oh, we can get this player from this team that we know is not going to for sure make it”, and if he gets sent to the team is going to make it, he can really make a difference, like he can, when he can make that difference in the home runs we need, in the maybe plays in the field, that they need, because they’re lacking defense at a certain position of the nine, that’s on the field. Or maybe he’s just an absolute hitter, he can just hit bombs for absolute days. And hey, you, you go to the DH possession type thing. And that’s just kind of how I think it’s going to probably go down. It’s just going to– I think it could be, there could be a lot of trades going down because of these teams trying to just get– try and nit-pick like that one extra guy that they can say, “hey, you can come over here and win a World Series. Why would you stay there and not even get to the playoffs? Like it’s not so smart”. Which I feel like there are some cases of that and I mean, they’re going to be people that are going to get injured, there’s going to be people that absolutely go off in the second half and teams that absolutely go off in the second half.
Evan Mellett: 19:17 Like, they’re like, “oh, they’re five behind”, but then they go like 15 over 500 in the second half and, oh, what is that? They’re winning their division now? Like there are some divisions that are tight where if a team goes off, the entire playoffs is like screwed because like it’s kind of switched around. Because now you have a team that’s now sitting at the top and then like, “oh, we thought we had this this first round”, bye. Or, “we thought we had home advantage for this first round and now we’re going at them for four of the seven in this first round that they’ll be playing”. And I just think it’s very interesting to see like what changes will be made. Because of the fact that I feel like there is going to be– there’s definitely going to be some to try to make that like, kind of like jump, being able to make from like, “oh, we’re going from a first run team to a– we can make a jump from a first round team to a World Series team”, because there are some players I can honestly do that and those are going to be the players that we have my eye on you because you can make the difference in a first round exit or a World Series win.
Evan Mellett: 20:18 And I mean, yeah, there are most of the teams like Red Sox and Dodgers that are looking like favorites, but I mean there are always teams that sneak in, there maybe not beat them at seven but take them to seven. And then it goes and they’re like incredibly tired for the next series, like there’s a lot that goes into the whole playoff scenario. With wrapping up this talk about the MLB, this will also wrap up the 12th edition of the Sports Run On podcast. I want to thank you all for listening, if you have any suggestions of like sports you think, “oh he needs to talk about this more, like something big happened and he missed it”. Like, make sure to subscribe down below to make sure that you know when my next podcast is, so if like you want to give or, I mean if you want to let me know down below if maybe you want to hear me live, if that’s like something that, instead of pre-recorded, to know that like, so you can actually like absolutely, I can make a line and you can call in so I can know like, I can hear your input, like that that’d be fine too.
Evan Mellett: 21:16 But you guys got to let me know down below so subscribe to make sure and let me know. Like, comment down below what you think– what you want me to talk about. I mean, I want to know what you guys want to hear about, and that’s what I want to talk about because I want to know, like what you guys want my opinions on. Like if you want my opinions on something, if you want to say like, “Oh, you’re so wrong about this”, like if I’m so wrong about this, tell me why like I mean, that’s what I’m saying. Like, don’t kind of like go in the newsletter and say, “Oh, you’re wrong”. Like I want you to say like, “Oh, I think you’re wrong about the prediction for the Browns. They’re going to click immediately. It’s just going to be like oh Super Bowl or at least playoffs”. And if you think that then let me know down below and that’s– and with that said I do want to thank you for listening to the 12th edition of the Sports Run On podcast, and if you have any suggestions, make sure you subscribe down below for the next newsletter and let me know in the comments what your suggestions are. Thank you.