Archive for January, 2013

Phils Get Young-er

January 22nd, 2013 by Mike H. | 1 Comment | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

A balance of Youth and Experience is Best

The Phillies got older at the winter meetings by acquiring third baseman Michael Young. Now they’ve doubled their youth by adding former first- rounder Delmon Young. While the move has its potential based on the fact that the Phillies are on tied to 750k, it does create an issue. Who’s the odd man out?

The Phillies currently have six out fielders: Revere, Ruf, Brown, Mayberry, Nix, and Young. I’d imagine Revere is a lock to make the team. Mayberry is the only one who is capable to play center field of the remaining four. Nix, when healthy, can be a solid hitter. While many have given up on Brown, I still think he has a chance to be a solid contributor. Ruf not only hit, but mashed his way to the show in 2012. So much that Manager Charlie Manuel has taken a liking to him.

So who stays and who goes? The most likely option to go is Brown. He has the ability to be sent down and is left-handed. It also appears that the team may have soured on him over the years.

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Should The Sixers Re-Sign Andrew Bynum To A Long Term Deal?

January 22nd, 2013 by Sam Shipley | Comments Off on Should The Sixers Re-Sign Andrew Bynum To A Long Term Deal? | Filed in Basketball, Sixers, Sports

Is Bynum worth the risk?

The Sixers lost to the Spurs last night 90-85, and have now fallen to 17-24 on the season. However, this season up until this point could not be looked at as a whole since the Sixers have been without star big man Andrew Bynum. Bynum was brought over to Philly in the blockbuster trade that also sent Dwight Howard to the Lakers, and former Sixer All-Star Andre Iguodala to Denver.  There was no question to the move when it was made because Bynum has the ability to be a dominant force down low and is arguably the best big man in the game at times. The Sixers haven’t had a big man like that in a long time, and for years that has been the Sixers Achilles heel.

When the trade was made the Sixers jumped to the top of the Eastern Conference in terms of predictions for who would be the top teams. However, not many knew about the extent of Bynums injury which has kept him from even putting on a Sixers uniform besides on media day. This teams make-up is a lot of perimeter shooters, who aren’t necessarily scorers who will give you 25 a night, but instead knock down long two’s and three’s. That kind of makeup is tough to win with because teams will stay on the perimeter and contest shots and a long two or three is not a high percentage shot.

When you have a dominant force down low that can demand a double team, such as Bynum, that is when the shooters become much more dangerous. If teams would decide to double Bynum, they would have to live with the risk of leaving shooters open for good looks. If they would contest the shooters, then that leaves Bynum one-on-one down low which he is very capable of taking advantage of.

We have not seen this style of offense yet, because like I said the only time we seen Bynum in a Sixer uniform was on media day. Bynum has played just one full season, which was his second year in the league, and besides that his most active season was last year where he played 60 of 66 games. That is a big concern going forward, especially when it comes to Bynum’s next contract. As you can already see, Bynum being hurt takes a huge toll on this team because they aren’t the most sound team in the league where guys are just able to come in and replace that kind of talent.

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My Thoughts of BDawk at The Sports Cave

January 22nd, 2013 by talks7 | Comments Off on My Thoughts of BDawk at The Sports Cave | Filed in Eagles, Events, TalkSportsPhilly

Brian Dawkins is the Man!

By Bud Vaughn

I recently got the pleasure of shaking the hand of probably, my all time favorite football players.  Brian Dawkins, or “Weapon X” as he so deservedly was called.  The 9 time pro bowl safety out of Clemson University played 13 of his 16 year career with the Philadelphia Eagles. The final 3 came with the Denver Broncos.  He presence on the field brought an energy and passion to the game I have not seen since within the Eagles.  I don’t know which was more explosive, his hits or the fireworks show that preceded his entrance onto the field .

Receivers who were sent to his part of the field knew at some point they were going to get hit HARD.  During one game in 2002 against the Houston Texans Brian recorded a sack, an interception, forced fumble and a touchdown reception, which has never been done before in the history of the NFL. When I walked into the Sports Cave where he was signing autographs, I had a “thought He’d be bigger” moments, sorry Brian.

That just made me that much more impressed with his level of play.  He was very nice to all the fans.  I loved the hat he wore.  Now that I have retired my Dawkins jersey, which is now signed , I can only hope that an Eagle of his caliber will rise up soon.  He has my vote for a defensive coaching position with the Eagles. Can you think of anyone else who knows Jim Johnson’s defensive mind better than Brian? Throughout his career I never heard of him getting anything but praise from people who met him or seen him out and about.  I wish I had the opportunity to tell him thank you for everything.  I also thank The Sports Cave for putting together such a great signing. (more…)

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The Boys (Flyers) are back in town

January 19th, 2013 by Emily Phung | Comments Off on The Boys (Flyers) are back in town | Filed in Flyers, General, Hockey

The Boys are Back in Town

Winter doesn’t feel the same without a bit of hockey. Philadelphia sports fan have been rejoicing since the lockout ended. The Flyers are so glad to be back for so many reasons. A few of the Flyers had sustained injuries from playing in European leagues overseas (Jakub Voracek, Danny Brière, and Claude Giroux) and didn’t want to continue with the rough style hockey that may have put their careers in jeopardy. Some just felt like they were not part of a team even when they joined one. For example,Wayne Simmonds felt out-of-place and uncomfortable since there were so many racial remarks made by fans at a Czech Extraliga league. He definitely is more than thrilled to be back in action in the states where such incidents are rare and remote. With a shortened hockey season, what will the Flyers team possibly be like?

Here’s a few dynamics that can be major factors for the season.

– Departure of players may change the dynamic of the team. Without the presence of major producer, Jaromir Jagr, many wonder who will step into his shoes. Jagr was a team player by helping individuals to improve on the ‘basics’ that the Flyers had lacked in many seasons prior to Jagr’s arrival. On another note, with Matt Carle migrating to a Tampa Bay, the Flyers team needs to negate this deficit as well since Carle was able to move the puck efficiently on the ice that opened many game making opportunity plays for other players.

– Claude Giroux hits back the ice as the Flyers captain. His leadership last year helped motivate the team to unprecedented levels at time. Finishing 3rd in the NHL with points was an impressive feat. It is only so fitting that he represents the Flyers team in a recognized leadership position such as captain.

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Should the Sixers shake up the roster?

January 17th, 2013 by Sam Shipley | Comments Off on Should the Sixers shake up the roster? | Filed in Basketball, Sixers, Sports

Time for a Change???

The Sixers are now 16-23 on this 2012-13 season, and in no way do they resemble the team that brought a spark back to basketball in this city just a year ago. They look awful at times, and even when they do play good basketball they still find ways to lose those games. Now I know that Andrew Bynum has yet to play a game yet, but in all honesty I don’t believe that he will make this team any more then another first round exit or a weak 2nd round opponent. Bynum is a great player, one of the top big men in the league, but besides Jrue Holiday there isn’t a player on this team who is able to make big shots consistently. Holiday is having a breakout, all-star like season averaging 19 points and just under 9 assists per game. He is also one of just two Point Guards to average 18 points, 8 assists, and 4 rebounds along with Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook. However after Holiday it doesn’t look that good for this team.

Evan Turner is having a solid year when you look at his number averaging about 14 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists per game. However, when you watch him play it doesn’t feel like he is having that solid of a season. Evan is one of the most inconsistent players on the team, if not the league. Some nights everything will be working for him, but on other nights which is more often then not he will be painful to watch. He tends to force contested fade away’s and jumpers, or tries to force the issue to try and get to the rim which usually results in a miss or turnover. On most teams Evan’s numbers would be good and really helpful and his inconsistency wouldn’t be noticed as much, but when you are a “go-to” guy on a young team and struggle more often then not it is tough to deal with.

Thad Young is having a solid year as well, averaging about 15 points and 7 rebounds per game on 52% shooting. However those numbers can be misleading as well. Thad is a great hustle player, he is someone who never gives up on a play and will fight for a rebound or lose ball. He can make a broken play a good play by getting a tough bucket late in the shot clock, and his defense is average as well. Where Thad gets into trouble is when he tries to become a shooter instead of a post up player. Thad is much more efficient when he has his back to the basket and is able to get his patented little left handed hook shot to go. That has always seemed to be Thad’s go-to move over the course of his five year career so far, but this season he is settling for jumpers more than he usually does. Don’t get me wrong Thad can knock down a 15 footer, but not as efficiently as a 5 foot hook shot. Also, it would benefit the Sixers if Thad was down on the block rather then at the free throw line this way we have another body down there to grab rebounds. Like Evan Turner, Thad is solid but he is not a go-to guy in a half court offense quite yet.  (more…)

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Rollins = America!

January 17th, 2013 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Rollins = America! | Filed in General

As the official 2013 United States roster is unveiled for this iteration of the World Baseball Classic, the Phillies only representative so far is Jimmy Rollins. Later today, when the international teams are announced, we may find other Phillies involved, but for now, only Rollins will miss time with team. This will benefit Freddy Galvis, as he will most likely get the nod at short in his absence.

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New Man in Town without a “Chip’ on his Shoulder

January 17th, 2013 by Emily Phung | Comments Off on New Man in Town without a “Chip’ on his Shoulder | Filed in Eagles, Football, General

The New Man

The Philadelphia community is excited to embrace some new and fresh energy when it comes to football after such a turbulent season. Who is this new man about town? The new coach for the Philadelphia Eagles will be Chip Kelly formerly the head coach of the University of Oregon.

What was Chip Kelly’s deciding source? One can only speculate. One source of motivation is that Philadelphia has not yet won a Super Bowl. This is a great driving source of motivation and also a fantastic challenge for Chip to bring the 1st football championship into the City of Brotherly love. There also lays lot of opportunities for Chip Kelly in regards to a team aspect. With a lot of players to coaching staff leaving, he seems to have almost a somewhat nice and clean palette to work with it. Considering that the Eagles season was terrible, he also has an active opportunity in picking a great draft pick. There is a lot of room for Kelly to customize his team and what works for him. That flexibility may be a decision breaker as well. Or maybe he was won over by the city of Philadelphia itself which contains a deep-rooted sports culture to the culinary pizzazz. Philadelphia does have a lot to offer overall from the city to the team situation and that maybe been another source of enticement and a reason for the solidity of the coaching position.

Critics wonder if Chip can transition from college football to NFL. Well, there are certainly big differences; however I am confident that Chip will excel at this opportunity. Is winning in Chip Kelly’s blood? It certainly is. He has taken University of Oregon to many bowls and earning them 3 outright conference titles as well as a conference division title in 2012. Chip’s success has been recognized with many coaching awards as a result. For someone that only has a few years of college coaching that’s a record to boast about.

Will Chip’s infamous blur offense (his version of spread offense) translate well into the Eagles? The shotgun formation may just work out. LeSean McCoy and Bryce Brown are infamous for their long runs on the field so the wide splits in this strategy will help open opportunity for more touchdowns or at least more impactful plays. As long as the Eagles establish some great defense to cover the field, it will work out to the benefit of the Eagles.

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