Friday, October 30, 2009

Wire Check - 10/30/09


The 49ers might open up the passing game a little. Maybe. [SJ'>">SJ Merc]

Also from Kawakami, Crabtree is a game changer for the 49ers. [SJ'>">SJ Merc]

JaMarcus Russell showed up to work at 6:30am on Wednesday, setting his own personal best. Next stop, Championship! [SFGate'>">SFGate]

Niners biggest challenge this week? Contain Peyton Manning. [SJ'>">SJ Merc]

Louis Murphy and Chris Johnson are hurting. [CC'>">CC Times]

The Crabtree tampering case is still moving forward. Yay? [ProFootballTalk'>">ProFootballTalk]


It's time for Cal basketball to step up. Isn't that what they've been telling the football team? [SFGate'>">SFGate]

Will RT be watching Curry v. Nash tonight? I think so. [SFGate'>">SFGate]


Ray Ratto gets red-ass about the Sharks. [SFGate'>">SFGate]

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Wire Check - 10/29/09


* I love how the chronicle focuses on the fact that Morrow missed a three pointer and not the fact that taking Curry out was the reason the Warriors lost. Good stuff [SF Gate]

* The Warriors need a coach that is going to teach the young guys something, anything. Until then, just keep shooting [SJ Merc]


* Best team in the Bay Area just keeps winning. [SF Gate]


* Raiders teammates are backing up Russell which is why teams need coaches and management. [CC TImes]

* Willis no longer carries the green dot. [SF Gate]

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wire Check - 10/28/2009


Warriors season begins tonight...

And they COULD*** make the playoffs. [SFGate'>">SFGate]

How many of us will actually be going to games? Not counting RT. [SJ'>">SJ Merc]

Live Chat with Marcus Thompson of the CC Times before the game tonight. [CC'>">CC Times]

Adam Lauridsen analogizes the 2009-2010 Warriors and the Bay Bridge. [SJ'>">SJ Merc]


Everybody's talking about Quarterbacks today. [SFGate'>">SFGate]

The Raiders and 49ers are in limbo. [CC'>">CC Times]

The 49ers' offensive line, which has played soooo great lately, got a little thinner. [Press'>">Press Democrat]

See inside the mind of a Raiders fan. Q&A with Matt Gutierrez. [Sac'>">Sac Bee]

Jerry Mac, the eternal optimist. "At least penalties are down." [CC'>">CC Times]

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

RT's Official Warriors Guide 2009-2010

RT’s Official Golden State Warriors Preview 09-10

Last Year…

Not surprisingly, the Warriors’ season was a nightmare. The happy days of the Baron-led Warriors was long gone and the team lacked true leadership and an identity. The ghost of Monta Ellis’s injured ankle hung over the team for most of the season and, apparently, scared the team into playing no defense for most of the season.

However, it wasn’t all terrible. As I said in last year’s preview, out of Wright, Randolph or Bellinelli, one of them was going to show signs of greatness. True enough, Wright got hurt, Bellinelli was given no direction (or coaching) and continued to tread water in the pool of mediocrity and Randolph showed displayed flashes of greatness. The only person I know who loves the NBA as much as I do gave some very high praise to Randolph last week.

If nothing else, the 2008-2009 Warriors’ season provided us with two major positives:

1) Randolph has the potential to be an All-Star

2) Monta Ellis showed signs of his old greatness

As you should all should know by now, having two “IT” players is basically a requirement for a team to contend for a title.

The Off-Season

The Good…

* Stephen Curry: As I go through this preview I am going to remind all the bandwagon I-became-a-Warriors-fan-in-2007 fans (aka “dubs” fans) about how good we have it in 2009-2010. Before Chris Mullin became the GM, the Warriors would have taken Jordan Hill in this year’s draft. Instead the Warriors made the best pick possible by taking the dynamic guard from Davidson with the number 6 pick. The name of the game in the NBA draft lottery is take the best player available no matter who you have on your roster and that is exactly what the Warriors did. There are really only two possible outcomes for Curry.

1) He becomes the second coming of Steve Nash and we get to sit back and watch some amazing basketball over the next 12 years.

2) He becomes the second coming of Dale Ellis. (Dubs fans, he was a sharp shooter who brought nothing to the table except quality three-point shooting.)

* Amare Stoudemire is not a Warrior: Koski told me over the weekend how much he hates the Warriors management. I told him that I am willing to give them a chance but if they trade for Amare, I am done. The bottom line is the Warriors have a lot of young talent and they will need to trade some of it to take the next step but the time to do it not now. The fact that the current management had the discipline to not mortgage the future for a quick fix, is a good sign.

The Bad….

* Captain Jack to Stephen Jackson: If you ask anyone who knows anything about basketball, the Warriors need to have a tall point guard who can guard the likes of Kobe and Brandon Roy while Monta plays shooting guard. Amazingly enough, the Warriors already have that player and his name was Captain Jack. However, the clock struck midnight on this relationship and or fearless leader has turned back into a pumpkin. A starting lineup of Capt. Jack, Monta, Randolph, Ronny Turiaf and Andres Biedrins is pretty darn intimidating. Unfortunately, we will never get to see it.

* Don Nelson is still the coach: Like George W. Bush in December last year, Don Nelson doesn’t care anymore and is already looking towards retirement. As a result, a team oozing with talent and looking for guidance has only two “role models” – 1) the man mentioned above and 2) a coach who drinks scotch before games and who will tell the young players “just keep shooting”. By the all-star break, we will be mentioning Cohan’s decision to not let Nelson go in the same breath as the Corey Maggette signing.

The Ugly…

Randy Johnson

Outlook 2009-2010

For those of you not familiar with my preview style, I will talk about what the Warriors should do and my predictions as opposed to what they will do (which will undoubtedly not be what I suggest)

The Stating Line-up

Point Guard: Stephen Jackson

He is under contract and as long as the Warriors force him to honor that contract (see what I said about the Al Harrington situation last year which applies to the Stephen Jackson situation this year), he still gives the Warriors a chance to be successful this year. Monta needs to play shooting guard and Stephen Jackson is the perfect player to get the offense started for the Warriors unconventional backcourt. Not to mention, he can still guard the likes of Kobe Bryant and Manu Ginobili.

Shooting Guard: Monta Ellis

To be clear, Monta should be playing the same role AI played for the Sixers in the late 90s and early 2000s. For all the dubs fans out there, AI was the first under 6’4” player to play carry the burden of scoring and lead his team to the finals. Monta is cut from the same cloth and there is no reason that he cannot do the same thing AI did if the Warriors surround Monta with the right supporting cast.

(I can’t be the only person who thinks this backcourt makes perfect sense)

Small Forward: Anthony Randolph

If the Warriors do nothing else this year, the one thing they need to do is play Randolph 40 minutes a night. Period. He will have nights where is the best player on the court and other nights where even the most optimistic Warrior fan will think he will never live up to the hype. Either way, he needs to be allowed to play and gain confidence from his successes and learn from his mistakes.

Power Forward: Ronny Turiaf

There is a better chance of the sun rising in the west then there is of Turiaf starting at power forward on a Don Nelson team. I cannot help but agree with this move by Don Nelson. There is nothing that drags a team down like an unselfish, hard-working, defensive rebounding power forward in your starting frontcourt. Smart move Mr. Nelson … your genius knows no bounds.

(I cannot wait for the Cam Inman article in 2011 when he calls the next Warriors coach a genius for playing Turiaf and Biedrins side by side. Of course, I might be giving Inman too much credit)

Center: Andris Biedrins

The definition of a rock solid NBA player is Andris Biedrins. The only question is how many years can the Warriors count on him to be a 13-11 guy who plays great defense and always seems to get better right when you think he has plateaued? 10 more years? 12? I am starting the campaign that says anyone who bad mouths Biedrins at a Warriors game should spend a night in the drunk tank at the county jail.

The Bench

* Corey Maggette: It is about time we started calling Maggette “Mr. 2nd Quarter”. All Maggette cares about are his numbers and Nelson finally started to realize that last year. As a result, Maggette is the perfect player to play during garbage time (aka the 2nd quarter) in an NBA game. He could score 16 points in 12 minutes and with 12 of the 16 coming from the line. The Warriors would win at least 5 more games just for the fact that Maggette would keep them in games they would normally roll over in. I love this plan.

(Of course, Nelson will think Maggette is playing a great game by halftime, leave him in during crunch time and Maggette will stop driving to the basket because he will have scored his 23.5 points and start shooting fade away jump shots because he does not want to get hurt. Who says NBA players are selfish!?)

* Anthony Morrow: What is the exact opposite of Biedrins? Anthony Morrow. The only thing I know for certain is that he will have night where he has a hard time guarding a flag pole let alone an NBA player. However, the combination of his offensive skill and hustle probably puts him in front of Kelenna Azibuke. I don’t think Morrow is destined for greatness, but he could prove to be a legitimate candidate for the 6th man of the year award.

* Kelenna Azibuike: What can you say about the Wizard of Azibuike? He does everything well and nothing great. While that description is to be considered a negative comment when talking about a starter, it is a compliment for a reserve. There isn’t a Warrior fan who should be upset when he comes on to the floor.

* Brandan Wright: Let’s play Jeopardy –

Answer: For the Warriors to make the playoffs in the 09-10, this player needs to have a breakout season.

Question: Who is Brandan Wright?

In other news, Brandan Wright might miss the season with a shoulder injury.

* Acie Law IV: Allow me to make this quick … Acie Law is a poor man’s Marco Bellinelli.

(and yes, I am very proud of that reference)

* Mikki Moore: The Warriors have to be the only team in NBA history that replaces a skinny power forward who can barely shoot or rebound with a skinny power forward who can barely shoot or rebound. There has to be a player in Germany right now that is 6’10” 265 lbs that can at least rebound. Seriously.

* Speedy Claxton/C.J. Watson/Devean George: Every minute these guys play is a wasted minute. None of them are going to be an integral part of a Warrior playoff team now or in the future, so why play them when some of the other guys need experience.

(Over/Under on how many minutes C.J. Watson averages this year is 15.5. I hate that I love this team)


The Warriors

The Warriors are not going to make the playoffs. However, this is the second best Warriors team (based on talent) the Warriors have had to start a season in the last 14 years. Seriously, look it up if you don’t believe me. While Dubs fans will complain about how terrible the team is, Warriors fans will get to watch some amazing basketball at the Oracle, where the Warriors will be tough to beat. However, young teams struggle on the road and the Warriors will be no different. Once again, I will be too optimistic with my prediction but I am standing behind it. Same exact predication as last year:

Finish: 40-42, 4th in the Pacific and 10th in the Western Conference.

Happy Warriors Season!

The League

The one thing I will say about the 2009-2010 NBA season is that it will be the most boring NBA season in recent memory. The Lakers are far and away the best team and there is no reason they don’t sleep walk to the title.


1. Boston (2)
2. Philadelphia (6)
3. Toronto (8)
4. New Jersey
5. New York

1. Cleveland (1)
2. Chicago (4)
3. Detroit
4. Indiana
5. Milwaukee

1. Orlando (3)
2. Atlanta (5)
3. Charlotte (7)
4. Washington
5. Miami


1. Denver (2)
2. Portland (5)
3. Utah
4. OKC
5. Minnesota

1. San Antonio (3)
2. New Orleans (4)
3. Dallas (7)
4. Houston
5. Memphis

1. LA Lakers (1)
2. Phoenix (6)
3. LA Clippers (8)
4. The Warriors
5. Sacramento

The Finals
LA Lakers over Cleveland

Bold Prediction: The Lakers win 70 games

Wire Check - 10/27/09

Welcome to Christmas morning aka opening night of the NBA! In honor of the best day of the year, today's wire check will be all about the best league in world.

First lets sum up everything else.

* Raiders need to draft a quarterback
* Alex Smith is good, Jeff Garcia would be better
* The Giants need a hitter but will overpay for Holiday instead
* The A's need a new GM
* The Sharks are better than ever and the only team worth rooting for.


* Don Nelson is excited for the season ... I am excited for his resignation. [SF Gate]

* According to some the Warriors are the second worst team in the West. This writer would be a good example of a Dub fan (aka someone who has been watching NBA basketball for less than 5 years and thinks this Warriors team is really bad when really it is one of the best Warrior teams in the last 14 years. You can read my preview tomorrow) [SJ Merc]

* Who says the Clippers are cursed? [ESPN]

* Still the best sports information site on the internet. [CNNSI]

* You know whats funny, I have been calling for this lineup change for over a year. [CC Times]

* Everyone agrees, the Warriors are not going to the playoffs [ESPN]

Monday, October 26, 2009

Wire Check - 10/26/2009


The 49ers offense looked terrible in the first half, coming off a bye week, so Singletary switched things up at half time and Alex Smith looked really good almost a yer to the day after Singletary pulled JT O'Sullivan in favor of Shaun Hill. [SJ'>">SJ Merc]

Gwen Knapp says Smith had nothing to lose, but coming off the becnh hurt his ability to lead the two minute offense. [SFGate'>">SFGate]

Maiocco asks if this was all in the script? [Press'>">Press Democrat]

Darrius Heyward-Bey: Seven games played, 4 receptions 64 yards.

Michael Crabtree: One game played, 5 receptions 56 yards.

The Raiders got blasted and everybody owned up to it, except one. JaMarcus Russell. Nuff said. [SFGate'>">SFGate]


Big Mac is back! Weird. [SFGate'>">SFGate]

More Big Mac stuff. Inman says Big Mac's return will provide great theater. I'm not so sure that "No Comment" qualifies, but what do I know? [CC'>">CC Times]

John Shea is optimistic the Dodgers will crumble next season. RT and I aren't quite so sure. [SFGate'>">SFGate]

Friday, October 23, 2009

Wire Check - 10/23/2009


You want a divorce? Okay, you're FIRED! [The Big Lead]

FOX has now opened the flood gates on drunk waterfall jumping. [Deadspin]

Bruce Jenkins states the obvious, which apparently eluded Mike Scioscia, Darren Oliver sucks. [SFGate]

It's all Nick Swisher's fault! Not really, but NY media has to blame someone. [ESPN]


Does anybody care about the Napa D.A.? Anybody? [SFGate]

Despite the non-charges, Mark Purdy is skeptical of Tom Cable's innocence. [SJ Merc]

Kevin Lynch sets the over under on Crabtree catches on Sunday at 2.5. I'll take the over. At least one bubble screen and one quick slant per half. [SFGate]


Stephen Curry wins a starting spot by default. [SJ Merc]

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Wire Check - 10/22/2009


* Guess what the Niners need a passing game. In other words, the world doesn't need a third world war. [National Football Post]

* Wait a second, I thought JaMarcus Russell looked good last weekend!?! How dare you attack the savior of the Raider franchise! [ESPN]

* I would be too positive too if I had his contract. What does he care if he sucks? [SF Gate]

* If you can break a subordinates jaw while on the job and not get charged than we are looking at whole new way of doing business in CA. As a small business owner, I am in favor of Tom Cable avoiding charges. [SJ Merc]


* The newest problem with the Warriors. HINT: It is not winning too much. [SJ Merc]

* The scouts agree ... the Warriors are going to be great this year!! [CNNSI]


* The biggest winner of this years NLCS is ... [MLB]

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wire Check 10/21/09


Warriors' pre-season is almost over. Yawn. [SJ Merc]


Should fans cheer or boo Crabtree? [SFGate] Really? How about this, if he plays well, cheer him and if he plays poorly, boo him?

Kawakami says the pressure is going to build on Shaun Hill over the next few weeks. Alex Smith, be ready. [SJ Merc]

What's taking the Napa D.A. so long to decide whether to file charges in the Tom Cable/Randy Hanson incident? [SJ Merc]

Q&A with Gary Kubiak for this Sunday's 49ers' game against the Texans. [Press Democrat] Who asked this question? With your corners, do you stay on one side or do you have Dunta Robinson shadow the top guy? Did they expect an honest answer? Why not ask which downs they plan on blitzing, too?

After describing the Giants-Raiders game as scrimmage-like, Antonio Pierce is now complimenting the Raiders after they beat the Eagles. [Sac Bee] Gee, thanks for beating our division rival. You're not as bad as I said you were. Could you also beat Washington and Dallas?


Bud Selig recently said he has no plans on expanding instant replay in MLB. Then the "worst call of all time" happened. [Yahoo!] Your move, Bud.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wire Check - 8/20/09


* Thank god the Giants don't have a closer that just tries to throw the ball 100 mph and really has no idea where the ball is going. Oh wait ... [SF Gate]


* Let the ass kissing of Michael Crabtree begin. I really hate the Chronicle. [SF Gate]

* You want to know what the lock of the week is ... the Jets because there is no way the Raiders can win two games in a row. [SF Gate]


* One of the better teams in hockey got worked last night by my favorite team ... San Jose Sharks. [SJ Merc]


* Jackson promises peace against Bryant because he wants to play for the Lakers. [CC Times]

Monday, October 12, 2009

Wire Check - 10/12/2009


The 49ers' world came crashing down around them yesterday and Singletary boiled over. [SJ Merc]

Is it a good thing for the 49ers that Singletary draws most of the media attention? [SFGate]

The Raiders are a complete mess. As Gwen Knapp notes, JMR attempted his lowest number of passes this season despite being utterly blown out from the get go. [SFGate]

How bad was the loss for the 49ers? Worst loss at Candlestick. Ever. [Press Democrat]


Tiger, Tiger Woods y'all! [SFGate]

Friday, October 9, 2009

Wire Check - 10/9/09


* Crabtree is not going to suit up on Sunday so the question is ... what is the over under on how many times the TV goes show him in street clothes? My number is 8. [SF Gate]

* This is an awesome video clip of Mike Singletary (you have to love the Journey in the background) []

* The Raiders are stupid. [SJ Merc]


* Looks like talking a risk might pay off for the Sharks. Is anyone listening in the Giants Building?? [SJ Merc]


* Is Randolph ready to save the franchise? He better be. [CC Times]

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Random Thoughts and Questions: 10/8/2009

Random Thoughts and Questions: October 7, 2009

* Now that Crabtree is officially a 49er, can we start talking about how big of a steal he was at the 10 spot in last year’s draft?

* How is it possible that in 2009 baseball fans cannot watch the official broadcast of a division series game online? Allow me to apologize – you can watch the games as long as you don’t live in the United States. (Seriously, I am not making this up.)

* What do women do on Sundays during the football season?

* Multiple Choice – Which one of the following Bay Area team is the best team to root for?

A. Oakland Raiders
B. Cal Bear Football
C. San Francisco Giants
D. Golden State Warriors

* Just in case you were wondering, Stanford has a really good football team.

* If I told you at the start of the season that the pitcher with the second lowest ERA in the league and who led the league in strikeouts would finish third in the CY Young voting, wouldn’t you call me insane? Watch it happen.

* There is no way the Warriors cannot get close to equal value for Monta Ellis.

* Last year, I wrote an article on how NBA GMs should handle players that demand a trade. The Warriors completely blew it with Al Harrington so what do they do with their second chance with Stephen Jackson? Current odds are -500 on them trading him for a player that I cannot stand. (For those of you non-gamblers, -500 means bet $500 to win $100)

* Who cares what women do on Sundays during the football season?

* Answer to the multiple-choice question: A – When they leave town, you can change allegiances to a winning franchise and nobody will blame you.

* Is there anything worse than the “new” trains that Cal Train uses during commute hours? Is there ANYBODY on the planet who would rather face a fellow commuter rather than have his/her back to him/her? And yes, I am writing this on the train while playing footsy with a total stranger.

* Gambling Advice for the Week: During the NFL season, take the team that is playing the team I picked. Your Welcome

Wire Check - 10/8/2009


The 49es were the winners in the Crabtree holdout saga. [SFGate]

Kawakami just can't help but applaud the 49ers recently, and it's killing him. [Merc]

Maiocco asks why Eugene Parker was nowhere to be seen at Crabtree's press conference? [Press Democrat] Per Maiocco's tweet, Hammer played a larger role than escape route director.

Football Outsiders' Walkthrough looks at JaMarcus Russell's terrible completion percentage(It's after the Sharper Image section), including this gem:
Because of three interceptions, his quarterback rating on first down is 10.0, far lower than the rating you get just by throwing incompletions. (If you throw nothing but incomplete passes, your rating is 39.6.)
Jerry Mac's news and notes after Wednsday's Raiders practice. [CC Times]


Bruce Jenkins offers some power hitter options for the Giants. B.J. Upton intrigues me. [SFGate]

The Giants' Double-A team is moving to Richmond, VA and they are looking for a new nickname, please save them from becoming the Flatheads. [Merc]

The A's busy offseason and what lies ahead. [SFGate]


Monta Ellis injures his ankle in last nights game. Yes, it that is his scooter ankle. [CC Times]

WFB( Warriors Fast Break) with player by player performance breakdown. [Merc]

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wire Check - 10/7/09


* Crabtree is actually going to play for the Niners!? It's a miracle! [ESPN]

* I have never agreed with Ray Ratto in the past but I actually agree with him here [SF Gate]

* Which incident do you think the Commissioner is referring to? [CC Times]


* I will admit it - I love Warriors basketball and Tim Kawakami does a great job reporting on it. More on Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry. [SJ Merc]


* Its never to early to discuss what players the Giants will either fail to sign or overpay for. Welcome to the off-season. Also, please don't sign Jermaine Dye. [SF Gate]


* I don't know about you but I am excited for the Sharks slow start ... they may be saving their energy for the playoffs for once. Go Sharks! [SJ Merc]


* Sometimes sports and sex can sell together. [ESPN]

Monday, October 5, 2009

Wire Check - 10/5/09


Tidbits from the 49ers' mauling of the St. Louis Rams. [SFGate]

The Raiders are _______. Cam Inman chose "lacking leadership and offense" for today's column. [CC Times]

Some Niners were skeptical about the pink breast cancer awareness cleats, but it was only momentary. [SFGate]

The blame game is about to begin and heads will roll. Not Al Davis' head, of course. [SFGate]

The tsunami in Samoa hit close to home for Isaac Sopoaga, but he was relieved to hear his family was safe. [Merc]


Giants season - Over. [Merc]

A's? Been over. [CC Times]


Warriors played their first exhibition game last night against the Clippers. [CC Times]


After a disappointing opening game, the Sharks went to town on the Ducks. [Merc]

Friday, October 2, 2009

RT and Koski NFL Picks: Week 4

Just when you thought I was falling off on my picks..BAM! 3-0! RT even rebounded with a 2-1 performance. Who you got this week, RT?

  • Bengals -5.5 @ Browns
    The browns are terrible and the Bengals are on fluke away from being 3-0
    The Bengals score 14 points and win by 14.

    Last week, I went outside of the box and won with the Bengals so this week's outside of the box pick is ...
  • Cowboys -3 @ Broncos
    Everyone is down on the Boys except for me. The Broncos are not going 4-0 and I believe this is the week the Cowboys start clicking on offense. Boys win by 10.

  • Patriots -1 v. Ravens
    Wait, I get Brady, Moss, Belichek at home against a team that is trying to prove the dynasty is over!?!? I would not have bet against the Niners in 1991 and I will not bet against the Patriots in 2009.

Koski (7-2)
  • Titans -3 @ Jaguars
    The Jaguars got lucky and beat a terrible Houston defense last week. The Titans defense is legit, not superhuman like last year, but legit.

  • Giants -9 @ Chiefs
    Are the Giants one of the five best teams in the NFL? Yes. Are the Chiefs one of the five worst? Yes. I'll gladly give single digit points.

  • Chargers +6.5 @ Steelers
    Philip Rivers is the new Dan Fouts and the Chargers offense runs through him. Without Polamalu, Antonion Gates, Vincent Jackson and Darren Sproles all day.

Week 1 Results
Koski: 49ers +6.5 @ ARI, Cowboys -6 @ TB, Vikings -4.5 @CLE
RT: Packers -3.5 v. CHI, Patriots -11 v. BUF, Chargers -9 @ OAK
Week 2 Results
Koski: Raiders+3 @KC, Packers-9.5v. CIN, Chargers-3v. Ravens
RT: Titans-6.5 @ Texans, Steelers-1@CHI, Panthers+6.5 @ ATL
Week 3 Results
Koski: Giants -6.5 @ Buccaneers, Jets -1 @ Titans, 49ers +6.5 @ Vikings
RT: Texans -3.5 v. Jaguars, Lions +65 v. Redskins, Bengals +4 v. Steelers