Welcome back to the I-can't-believe-I-wasted-all-that-time-doing-this-again version of Sports Take. Almost 100 views on the first version, hopefully my audience increases, but that's up to you.
If you took the time to read this far, I apologize already.
I just read this morning that John Hammond and John Salmons’ agent are working on an extension. The extension is expected to be including his opt-in year, and three additional years for up to a grand total of $27 million.
That makes it just under $7 million annually for a player that averaged near 20 points per game for the Bucks, and led them to a (22-8) record since the team had him. I like the extension if it goes through for a couple of reasons.
The first reason is because Salmons is only 30, and four more years would put him as a member of the Bucks through age 34. That’s not exactly over-the-hill, just ask Jerry Stackhouse.
Another reason I like the deal is because it makes it just under $7 million annually. Not that bad of a deal when you consider the mid-level exception in the NBA is right around $5 million per season.
After next season when Michael Redd, and Dan Gadzuric’s dead weight salaries come off the books, this team will have some money to throw at free agents.
Add in a hopeful Brandon Jennings extension next summer, and this team should compete in the top tier of the Eastern Conference for quite a few years to come.
This series has been very interesting so far. Not because of how close the games have been, because quite frankly, they haven’t been. But what has been interesting is the questions that arise coming off of the first two games of this series.
The Hawks got absolutely destroyed Game 1, in what was a blowout somewhat early. It was without a doubt an embarrassing loss for the Hawks, to lose by 43, even if it was on the road.
They came out in the first half in Game 2 and played quite well. In fact, and even had the lead. The second half seemed to be more of the first game, as Vince Carter took over for the Magic, leading his team to a 14 point victory.
Now, back to the questions that arise out of this. The first thing I wonder is if the seven game series with Milwaukee took everything out of the Hawks?
It sure seemed like it Game 1, and in the second half of Game 2.
Secondly, as a Milwaukee fan, I would have to wonder how the Bucks would have fared against the Magic, and whether they would have done any better.
I had said even if they wound up winning that first round series they would get swept by the Magic, and it seems quite apparent that’s what’s going to happen to the Hawks if they don’t step their game up.
If the Hawks lost by 43 points Game 1 with six very talented players to throw at the Magic, how would the Bucks have fared with just Jennings and Salmons? Could you imagine Dwight Howard against Kurt Thomas in the post? **shudders**
The Bucks may have lost by 60 points Game 1 if they had won their series against Atlanta. Either way though, this Hawks-Magic series looks like it’s going to be a sweep.
The series shifts back to Boston tonight with a (1-1) series tie, but I’m expecting the Cavaliers to come out tonight and flex their muscles.
This team was the best team in the Eastern Conference for a reason, and unless Danny Ainge whips LeBron hard with a towel on his elbow tonight, I’m thinking King James might just go off.
I’d expect the Cavaliers to win tonight, then Boston to win Game 4, and turn this thing back around to Cleveland all tied up again for Game 5.
Rajon Rondo has really stood out in this series though, that has to be the key to the Cleveland defense tonight.
Alex Barron - Bobby Carpenter Trade:
A swap of former first-round busts is about to go down, according to multiple sources, as the St. Louis Rams are set to send off what was once thought to be future hall-of-famer Orlando Pace’s replacement.
Barron, a former first-round pick out of Florida State has been a huge disappointment for the Rams, and a false start machine.
He’s a large part of the reason former Rams quarterback Marc Bulger’s life expectancy went down about ten years over the past three seasons.
The Rams just can’t seem to hit on linemen in the draft, whether it be offensive or defensive. In recent years on the offensive line, it was Barron, and on the defensive line, it has been a now former-Ram in Adam Carriker, and a guy who’s still with the team but not making an impact, Chris Long.
Going to the Cowboys, Barron isn’t expected to start (shocker), as he is expected to fill into what lineman Doug Free did last year for the Cowboys, that swingman, extra tackle role.
Free is expected to start at Left Tackle, replacing the departed Flozell Adams. Bobby Carpenter is a former first round pick for the Cowboys out of The Ohio State University.
I find it interesting that what was widely regarded as one of the best linebacker tandems in the country that year at Ohio State, Carpenter and A.J Hawk, have each had very minimal success in the NFL.
Nonetheless, Carpenter is expected to start at weak-side linebacker for the Rams, pitting him with another former Buckeye in that linebacking core, James Laurinaitis.