By: Brett Dickinson and Barry Kamen
Each week on the Brett & Barry Show (Saturdays 9am-12pm), we gather each others’ analysis of the big news stories and headlines of the week for a couple minutes a piece in a segment we call Rapid Fire. We will post our answers in blog form every Sunday to a visual version, with links to our segment in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault.
Listen HERE to this week’s Rapid Fire on the Brett & Barry Show
Barry 1: After being selected in the Rule 5 Draft by the Texas Rangers, Seahawks QB wants to head to Spring Training. Should he be participating in baseball this offseason?
Remembering Deion Sanders and Bo Jackson sparks a neat idea for Russell Wilson, but in the end he does not have the luxury to waste time playing baseball. If he played any other position on the football field, I would give my unheralded support. But as a QB, he needs to live and breathe football, especially since he is only entering his third season and still has a lot to improve. Wilson should enjoy his Super Bowl celebration, but get back into the Seahawks facilities as soon as possible to be a shining example for his teammates, preparing for a repeat; which is tough enough, without distractions of playing another sport.
Brett 1: Reports out of Sochi for the Winter Olympics say that the accommodations for media members and athletes, with bad water, incomplete hotels and unfinished rooms. What is your reaction to what looks to be a disaster?
It is an absolute disgrace. For all of the things that the Olympics does well, there are so many issues that are often overlooked or ignored. The fact that hotels are unfinished and that the water is unsafe is inexcusable. With all of the political issues that Russia has, you would think that providing amenities to those from other countries would be high on their list. However, journalists will return to their respective countries with bad memories, and a bad taste in their mouth (yes, pun intended).
Barry 2: The Ravens have filled their open coaching vacancies, with Bobby Engram as WR coach and Thomas Hammock as RB coach. Were these good hires for the Ravens staff?
As we heard last week from John Harbaugh’s exclusive interview with WNST on radio row (listen here), Steve Biscotti wanted to expand the Offensive Coordinator to the college ranks. Though neither was a highly touted candidate, they fill key needs bringing youth to the staff. Hammock understands RBs, helping Montee Ball become a Doak Walker Award Winner and Heisman finalist in 2011. Wisconsin also set a NCAA record for most rushing yards by a RB duo, with James White and Melvin Gordon combining for 3,053 yards. Examining the players Hammock has coached, they all fit the mold of the downhill one-cut backs the Ravens need to develop for their zone-blocking scheme.
As for Bobby Engram, it is not the sexy hire but he brings important experience to the position filled with young, developing players. He was always a smart player, with a degree from Penn State and 14 years in the NFL as a WR. Engram’s biggest asset will be as a mentor to the likes of Torrey Smith, Marlon Brown and any rookie they bring in via the draft.
Brett 2: The Slam Dunk contest has announced its field with stars like Paul George, Damian Lillard and John Wall. Who is your favorite to take the title?
On a personal level, I would love to see John Wall win it. This past Wednesday, I had the chance to see the Wiz Kids take on the San Antonio Spurs in a double-overtime thriller. After seeing John Wall play in person, his quickness and ability to finish with both hands is outstanding. The way he wins the NBA Slam Dunk Contest is if he utilizes the entire court. You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who is quicker with the ball in his hands.
Realistically, this event is Paul George’s to lose. George puts up highlight reel dunks on a regular basis, so why should this weekend be any different? My sleeper pick would be Kings G Ben McLemore. He could steal the show with his athleticism and creativity.
Barry 3: Alex Rodriguez has officially dropped his lawsuits against the MLB, MLBPA and Bud Selig. What is your reaction to A-Rod ending his fight of his 162 game suspension?
Let’s just say thank god that this fiasco will ultimately go away. We don’t have to hear about the court cases and ongoing lawsuit battles on SportsCenter and ESPN. Rodriquez is simply trying to save face at this point and still has several seasons left on his contract to make up. He is still due a hefty lump-some in the coming seasons, so he needs to do whatever he can to ensure his eligibility with the Yankees over the coming years.
Brett 3: Portland Trail Blazers PG Damian Lillard will participate will compete in all five All Star weekend events. Your thoughts on him stating he was doing it for the fans?
Kudos to Lillard for acknowledging the paying audience. I don’t know why more athletes don’t feel the same way. If All-Star festivities are done for with the fans in mind, why aren’t the best athletes participating in these types of contests? It would be more compelling if it was LeBron James participating in all 5 events, but I hope that Lillard starts a trend, and encourages more players to put on a show and make future games and contest more intriguing.