Patriots Have Many Holes To Fill In This Year’s Draft.

Now that Mac Jones is officially a Patriot let’s look at the big picture. The Patriots have many holes to fill. Defensively, they ranked 26th in 2020. They were one of the worst teams in the league in stopping the run. So where do they go from here? My guess is Bill Belichick will focus on the defensive line adding to the rotation. In this post, we will discuss three departments the team needs to restructure.

Middle Linebacker/Defensive Front

The good news is Donta Hightower is returning for the 2021 campaign. Other than that there is not much to get excited about. Edge rusher Josh Uche showed flashes of promise. Chase Winovich is gradually getting better. Number one pick Kyle Duggar has shown he can play. I personally feel they need to get more physical. Teams ran all over them last season, averaging 4.5 yards per carry. That statistic needs to improve.

New additions Henry Anderson, Davon Godchaulx, and Matthew Judon, and Kyle Van Noy will bolster the front seven. Stopping the run is priority number one in 2021.

Patrick Chung Retiring/McCourty Aging

In the off_ season safety, Patrick Chung retired. Chung was noted for his ability in stopping the run. Long time safety Devin McCourty a year older. Second_year safety Kyle Duggar is not ready to take over yet.

Replacing Julian Edelman

The biggest off season news was Julian Edelman announcing his retirement. Edelman is one of the greatest slot receivers in Patriots history. Known for his toughness,Edelman made one of the most clutch catches in Super Bowl history in the comeback win.

Two names to keep an eye on are Elijah Moore of Ole Miss and terrace Marshall Jr of LSu. Both receivers are excellent route runners with burning speed.

Conclusion

Poor execution was frustrating for Patriots fans. A 7-9 record is frustrating for Patriots fans But with the free _agent spending spree and new blood coming in,2021 will be an exciting year.

Sizing Up Chaim Bloom’s Offseason Transactions.

Now that baseball is officially here, it is time to make predictions. Red Sox General Manager Chaim Bloom didn’t really make any big splashes, but he did enough to keep the team competitive. In this post, we will review Chaim Bloom’s Off_ season Red Sox transactions. If anything, the organization got better. But that remains to be seen.

New _Season Fresh Outlook

In 2020, the organization had the 4th worst record in Major League Baseball. Now a year later the team has rehired Alex Cora. With Alex Cora, the club has several new faces. Key addition,s are Garrett Richards righthanded pitcher, outfielder Hunter Renfroe, right_ handed pitcher Mike Andriese, Relief pitcher Adam Oattavino, utility man Marwin Gonzalez, second_baseman Kiki Hernandez, Right Handed_pitcher Calvin Pritchard,

Granted, these moves are not blockbusters, but good enough to make a solid competitor in the AL East this season. Martin Perez provides depth. With promising prospects Tanner Houck and Bryan Mata on the horizon, the club will make 2021 interesting.

Pitching Is Still Questionable

In 2020, the team had the worst bullpen in baseball. A Major League _high 25 blown saves cost the club a winning season. Manager Ron Roenicke lost his job to Alex Cora. Starters Chris Sale and Eduardo Rodriguez suffered season _ending injuries. Mike Andriese and Adam Ottavino will provide depth.

The primary concern is who will win the closer’s role? The logical candidate is Matt Barnes. Barnes will get competition from Ryan Brasier and Connor Seabold. Seabold came over in the Brandon Workman trade from Philadelphia trade along with Nick Pivetta.

Well Balanced Offense

In 2020 the Red Sox finished with a team average of 265 81 home runs and 278 rbi’s. They also had a 5th best 292 runs scored. Despite impressive numbers they finished with disappointing 24-36 record.

The team added Kiki Hernandez, Hunter Renfroe, and Marwin Gonzalez to the mix. Rookie Bobby Dalbec is the starting first baseman. In23 games with the big club he had 8 home runs and 16 rbi’s in 23 games.

Team Has Plenty Of Depth

The Red Sox have added plenty of depth for the 2021 season. Manager Alex Cora has plenty of options. KiKi Hernandez and Marwin Gonzalez can play both the infield and outfield. Hunter Renfroe can platoon and share the designated hitter responsibility.

Conclusion

With a new season comes hope and optimisim. The organization has young prospects ready to make their mark in the majors. The bullpen added arms and depth. A veteran starting pitcher in Garrett Richards. Red Sox fans have reason to be excited for the upcoming season.

Revolution Season Ends In A heartbreaking Loss

The New England Revolution’s season came to a heartbreaking loss Sunday, as the team lost 1-0 to the Columbus Crew. Columbus mid_fielder Artur scored the game_winner in the 58th minute. In this post, we will review three positives that the Revolution can look forward to in 2021.

Revolution Season Ends In a Heartbreaking Loss

13 Players Under Contract

Heading into next season, the Revolution will have 13 players under contract. Notable players under contract are Taejon Buchanon, Brandon Bye, Matt Turner, Gustavo Bou, and Alexander Button are just some players who will return in 2021.

Head coach Bruce Arena feels that the club has made significant gains from last season. Arena feels the team needs to strengthen its attacking department.

In Sunday’s loss, the Crew’s midfielders completely controlled the game. Star play _maker Lucas Zalaryan proved too much for the Revolution defenders. Star mid_fielder Artur took a pass from defender Johnathan Mensah for the game _winner.

Significant Improvements From 2019

The club had a significantly better season in 2020 than last season. Last year in 2019 the Revolution finished in 7th place with an 11-11 record and 12 ties. They averaged 1.33 points per game.

While in the bubble in 2020 the club finished 8-7-8 for 23 points, They scored 1.33 points per game. Defensively the club is one of the better teams in the MLS.

They still have one of the game’s best goalkeepers in Matt Turner. Down the stretch, Turner was fearless in dramatic wins over Philadelphia and Orlando. The club, however, did not pick up the option on backup Brad Knighton’s contract.

Bright Future With The Current Group

With the core group intact, the club will set higher expectations in 2021. The team has gained confidence and feels it can finally be a contender in the tough MLS East. The team broke a barrier by defeating the Philadelphia Union. The Revolution previously was 0-5.

Sunday’s loss was an excellent building block for the Revolution. Aside from 13 players under contract, the organization needs to decide on several other key players. Kelyn Rowe, Diego Fagundez, Antonio Delamea are a big part of the future that needs to be resigned.

Conclusion

Despite a heartbreaking loss,2021 should be even better. Head coach Bruce Arena is the game’s best. Considering the team came so close to going to the championship, they should only be better in 2021.

Why The 2020 Celtics Have An Outside Chance To Win Their 18th NBA Title

As the NBA season is about to resume, there are several issues facing the Celtics chances of winning their 18th title. Kemba Walker’s knee seems to have healed and is ready to go. The Celtics will play eight games to finish the season. If all goes well, the Celtics may reach the finals. In this post, we will review three reasons why this year’s team has an outside chance to win their 18th NBA title.

Why The 2020 Celtics Have An Outside Chance To Win Their 18th NBA Title 

Overall Health Of The Team Is Good   Since the league shut down in mid_March the health of the team is excellent. Kemba Walker’s knees are healed. Jayson Tatum is ready to take his career to the next level. If Brad Stevens can guide his team cautiously the Celtics could be interesting down the stretch.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Also, the organization needs to keep everyone healthy. If the league makes the season, the club that stays the healthiest is the team that could win it.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Team Is Shooting Better As we have seen in the past, the team that wins in  the postseason, is the team that shoots better from the field. For example, this year the club is shooting 363% as a group. The league average is 357%.                                                                                                                                                                                         Depth wise, the Celtics have been getting excellent production from guards Javonte Green, Carson Edwards, and Brad Wannamaker. Marcus Smart has improved tremendously in his outside shooting. Gordon Hayward was playing like Gordon Hayward before the pandemic.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      One Of The Best Defensive Teams In The League  In 2019/20 the Celtics ranked near the top defensively. Guard Marcus Smarts is one of the games best. His physical style of play has helped Boston win a lot of close games.                                                                                                                                                                                    If the Celtics expect to beat Milwaukee, Indiana, or Miami playing tough and physical will be one strategy they have to apply.  Center Robert Williams is maturing and brings muscle to the frontcourt. Center Enes Kanter is one of the team’s most popular players. Overall, the team was one of the leagues best defensive rebounding units.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Surviving The Pandemic With the league set to resume July 30th the overall safety of the players is goal number one. This will be a day to day season. If multiple players and teams start testing positive then expect the season to close.

Quiet Bruins OffSeason Resulting In Little Improvement

The Boston Bruins are enjoying a quiet offseason, after claiming their third Eastern Conference championship banner in nine years. Thus far the only Bruins signings have been forward, Brett Ritchie from Dallas, Danton Heinen, and Steven Kampfer. General manager Don Sweeney still has a lot of work to due this summer. The Bruins need to come to terms with Defenseman Torey Krug, Charlie McAvoy, and Brandon Carlo. In this post, we will review three reasons why the Bruins have not improved from last season.

Overpaying For Danton Heinen  Mistake, number one was overpaying for Danton Heinen. Heinen, the third_ year wingers production dipped considerably in 2018.

In 2011 Heinen’s 11 goals and 13 assists and a plus_ minus ratio of 11 one more than the previous season. In  2017  he netted 16 goals and 31 assists. This past summer the organization awarded him a 2.8 million dollar salary which ends in 2023.

Granted, Heinen is a gritty third__line player, he is not worthy of 2,000,000,  per season. With only three years of service time, he adds a strong physical presence on the team’s third line. Only time will tell if he is worthy of the contract.                          

  No Major Free Agent Signing’s  The good news is the Bruins are well under the NHL cap space this summer. The bad news is they have to come to terms with  Tory Krug, Charlie McAvoy, and Brandon Carlo. The team cannot sign all three

Torey Krug had one his most productive seasons as a Bruin. Krug is a valuable member of the power play and sparkled in the playoffs. Krug has one more year left on a four_ year  $21,000,000 deal. Expect Krug to average 9 or 10 million per year on the open market. Signing him will be a major hurdle losing him will be worse.

Charlie McAvoy and Brandon Carlo are the nuts and bolts of the defensive corp. McAvoy is at the end of his rookie contract. Carlo had his best season as a Bruin. When Zdeno Chara retires, Carlo will be the club’s number one or two defenseman.

Signing Brett Richie  The only major splash this summer has been Brett Ritchie. The team lost free agent  Marcus Johansen and center Noel Acciari. Ritchie has 33 goals and 21 assists n five_year’s as A DallasStar.  He is not the skilled player that Johansen is, but fits the Bruins style of play.

The Bruins have major decisions to make on McAvoy and Carlo. Krug could be the odd man out. Mc Avoy and Carlo are the future of the Bruins Compared to last season the team has not gotten any better and will struggle to reach the finals.

Three Trade Scenarios For The Red Sox As Trade Deadline Is Approaching

With the 2019 Trade deadline approaching July 31st, the club has several issues to consider. Struggling in third place for most of the season the most significant need is in the bullpen. With no proven closer, Boston does not have an abundance of prospects to offer. In this post, we will explore three possible trade scenarios for the 2018 World Champions to explore.                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Trade Eduardo Nunez  Trade chip number one trade Eduardo Nunez. Nunez was acquired two years ago from San Fransisco at the trade deadline. Nunez is having a productive 2019 hitting 2home runs and 18 rbi’s and hitting An experienced veteran Nunez would be a plus on any team.  Nunez brings versatility and is an asset in the locker room. With Marco Hernandez and Brock Holt, healthy Nunez is expendable.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Release Stephen Pearce    The 2018 World Series hero has been plagued with injuries in 2019. Currently on rehab Pearce, is nearly ready to return. A valuable member of the team last season Pearce has only 89 at_ bats in 2019.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Pearce signed a one year 6,000,000 dollar deal this past offseason. With plenty of power, Pearce still carries a potent bat when healthy. Would be a valuable acquisition for a  team contending for the playoffs. Rookie Michael Chavis has been the regular first baseman.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Trade Mitch Moreland   With rookie Michael Chavis playing every day Mitch Moreland could be expendable. Moreland is in the middle of a two_ year contract extension.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Last season, Moreland was a valuable contributor for the world champions He had one of his best season hitting 15 home runs driving in 68 runs and batting 245. When healthy he is one of the best defensive first basemen in baseball. Moreland, when healthy, would bring value to an organization with a thin farm system.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       So far, the 2019 season has been disappointing for Red Sox fans. With injuries to key players Nathan Eovaldi and no proven close,r the team has been struggling. With the All-Star game one week away the club is nine games  behind the first place Yankees. If the Sox do not gain any ground soon, then the club will have to move some overpriced players.  With half a season left, the Red Sox are far too talented to be stuck in third place.

Three Reasons Why The Celtics Need To Play Like Celtics In 2019/20

What a difference a year makes. In 2018 the Celtics lost to Cleveland in the Eastern Conference Championship. That roster was minus a Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward. This year, with a healthy roster the team slipped all the way to a fifth seed in the East. Several factors can contribute to this year’s disappointment. In this post, we will examine three reasons why the Celtics failed to play a brand of basketball fans can be proud of.

Three Reasons Why The Celtics Need To Play Like Celtics in 2019/20

No More Finger pointing    One area that needs to be addressed in 2019/20 is no more finger pointing. This was the norm for this year’s squad.  Previous  Celtics greats Larry Bird, Bill Russell, Bob Cousy, Kevin McHale, and Paul Pierce would never blame other teammates.

The team needs to focus on cohesiveness and unity. Over the course of 82 games, unity prevails where fingerpointing ends up in a losing battle.  If the Celtics can regain their 2018 form, this is one area that needs to be eliminated  immidiately.
For a team that came so close a year ago, you would never know by the actions of this seasons team.
 Better Ball Movement  The second area that needs improvement is the passing department. Games in which all five players were involved in were usually games that resulted in a victory.                                                                                                                                                                                For most of the season, the ball and game fell on Kyrie Irving. Gordon Hayward returned after a season _ending injury in 2018 was a disappointment.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The rest of the players Marcus Smart, Al Horford, Jayson Tatum,Jaylen Brown and Marcus Morris contributed significantly. Reserve guard, Terry Rozier spent most of the season complaining about his lack of playing time.
 Better Shooting  The biggest weakness, for this year’s team was the shooting. The Celtics finished fifteenth overall in three _point shooting. In the two_point shooting area, the club ranked fifth.  In the rebounding department, the Celtics ranked 16th and on the defensive side, the team sank to 22nd.
  All factors considered the club lacked consistency. At times they showed flashes of brilliance and other times they would return to unacceptable basketball. If the team aspires to be an Eastern Conference Contender, then they need to play like a Celtic team. Teamwork, Shooting and rebounding.
The Upcoming Season  If 2019 /20 is going to be a success it will have to be a complete team game. Head coach Brad Stevens needs to be more of a disciplinarian. Too many times last season the coach allowed the players to walk all over him.Regaining trust in each other is an important ingredient for any teams success.

Lack Of a Closer Will Prove Costly for 2019 Red Sox

With a quarter of the 2019MLB season completed, it’s safe to say the 2019 Red Sox have many question marks. Question number one is pitching. Currently, the club is tied for third in the ALEast behind Tampa and New York. Any hopes of a mid _season surge into first place will fall on the starting pitching. In this post, we will review three areas that the organization needs to focus on a return to return to first place.

Lack Of A Closer Will Prove Costly For 2019 Red Sox

No, Craig Kimbrel  In 2018 the Red Sox bullpen had a combined total of 46 saves. A lot of the credit went to closer Craig Kimbrel and setup man Joe Kelly. Kelly was instrumental in the post _season last year as he was one of the managers Alex Cora’s trusted relievers.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In the offseason, Kelly signed a multi _year deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Since Kelly’s departure, the majority of the responsibility has rested on reliever Ryan Brasier. Brasier has so far been adequate but does not even come close to Joe Kelly’s caliber.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Kimbrel, on the other hand, remains a free_agent. He is believed to be seeking a long _term deal perhaps equaling six or seven years.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Lack of Hitting  So far, the Red Sox are 17-19 in the American League East. Overall, the club is hitting 283 as a team fifth best in the league along with a total of 42 home runs.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    As of late outfielder, Mookie Betts has been on a torrid hitting streak. Newly recalled Michael Chavis had been one of the teams most productive hitters belting seven home runs in less than two weeks.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Also contributing with the bat have been Rafael Devers and catcher Christian Vazquez, and JD Martinez has been consistent.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Starting Pitching Needs To Be Healthy  After 36 games, the Red Sox starting pitching has suffered injuries to two key pitchers. Both starters David Price and Nathan Eovaldi have been placed on the DL  Out of the two, Evoldi’s injury is considered more serious.  It was diagnosed that Eovaldi will miss at least  4to 6 months of pitching due to Tommy John surgery.

If the team has any aspirations of returning to first place, then they will need a healthy David Price and Nathan Eovaldi.  Also on the injured list is lefthander Brian Johnson. Johnson’s injury is not regarded as serious.                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The season Ahead If the club expects to have any hopes of postseason then a lot will depend on the health of the pitching. Also, investing in closer is one  alternative the organization needs to think about if they expect to play even close to last season.

Three Quarterbacks That Would Be Perfect Fits In A Patriots Uniform In This Years Draft

With the 2019 NFL Draft officially underway, the quarterback issue is an area of concern as long as Tom Brady stays healthy. Barring an injury, the only capable backup is veteran Brian Hoyer. The question is can Hoyer carry the Patriots through the whole season and the playoffs. Some possible names to keep an eye on are Justin Herbert of Oregon, Drew Lock of Missouri and Will Grier of W Virginia. In this post, we will examine three quarterbacks who could help the Patriots and make the 2019 roster.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Three Quarterbacks Who Would Be A Perfect Fit In A Patriots Uniform In This Year’s Draft

Justin HerbertOregon Herbert is an interesting possibility whose stock has climbed the past month. The 21 year_old has the height 6’6” and weight 224 lbs. that appeal to a lot of NFL coaches.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               In 2018 Herbert threw for 3151 total yards and 29 touchdowns 8 interceptions. As a three year starter at Oregon, has thrown for 63 touchdowns with his longest an 83_ yard bomb in 2018.                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Herbert’s strong points are his decision making and arm strength. Look for Herbert to go in the mid_ rounds in this year’s draft. Herbert certainly has the size a characteristic that head coach Bill Belichick relishes.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Will Grier West Virginia  Grier has shown considerable interest from the Patriots as a possible fit in New England.  The former transfer from Florida had a career year in 2018 throwing for 3,498  yards and 12 touchdowns.                                                                                                                                                                                                  Grier’s strengths are his throwing accuracy and pocket presence. With, three _third round picks the chances of Grier being available are slim. Do not expect  Bill Belichick to trade up to get him.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Drew Lock  Missouri  Locke is an interesting candidate. As a three year starter at Missouri Lock has thrown for over 3000, yards in each season. In 2017 led the nation with 44 touchdown passes.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                At 6’4” Lock has the size and agility to be a legitimate NFL quarterback. He comes with the reputation of being a gunslinger and lacks patience. With an impressive resume under his belt look for Lock to be a fourth or fifth round selection.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Upcoming Season With a total of eleven draft picks this year look for the Patriots to be quite active. With  Rob Gronkowski retiring the team has several needs to fill. The question still remains the Patriots will win as long as Tom Brady stays healthy.

Why Defense Is A Key Factor For A Successful Bruins Post Season Run

Experienced Group; With three- quarters of the NHL season over, the team’s defence ranks second in the league in goals allowed. As the third-year coach, Bruce Cassidy rotates goalies Tuukka Rask, and Jaraslov Halak the Bruins have held onto fourth place in the NHL East.

The defensive group of Zdeno Chara, Charlie McAvoy, Brandon,  Carlo, John Moore Kevan Miller, Steven Kampfer, and Torey Rug.. have remained fairly healthy. Early season injuries to Charlie McAvoy and Zdeno Chara the Bruins defence has been one of the best in hockey.

Except for John Moore and Steven Kampfer, the group has been together for five years or longer. At 42 years old Zdeno Chara is a valuable member of the clubs power play. Veteran Torey Krug is having a solid season by logging 44 games played and 5 goals and 33 assists. Krug is also an essential member of the Bruins power play.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sixty Minutes Of Hockey; One area the team needs to focus on is consistency. Saturday’s 5-4 win over the LA Kings the Bruins fell apart in the third period. Future Hall Of Fame winger Patrice Bergeron netted the game _winning goal in overtime to beat the Kings. It was also Bergeron’s 1,000 point as a Bruin.

The team has won and lost several close games this season because of a defensive breakdown.  In a recent win over Washington, goalie Tuukka Rask kept the Capitals scoreless for three periods and earned his 253 wins as the organizations winningest goalie.

Staying Healthy; Despite early season injuries to Charlie McAvoy and Zdeno Chara, the Bruins have one of the top five defensive units in the NHL.  Outside of the Bruins Anaheim, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh and Minnesota have better defensive units.

Zdeno Chara continues to pile up the minutes every night. If the rest of the defence can stay healthy, the team will be a serious contender going forward.

Looking Ahead; Head coach Bruce Cassidy continues to mix up his lines regularly. Keeping goalies Tuukka Rask and Jaroslav Halak fresh will be another factor for a successful Stanley Cup run