Sunday, March 10, 2013

Out of right field

The Columbus Blue Jackets find themselves in the unfamiliar position of being in a four game winning streak. In two hours there game two of a home and home series against the Red Wings. Yesterday afternoon, the Blue Jackets spanked them 3-0 in front of a joyous home crowd. It got a bit testy when, late in the game Justin Abdelkader got in a tussle with Vinny Prospal. While skating away Prospal pointed at the scoreboard, and got a deserved ten minute misconduct. After years of getting the crap beaten out of them by the Red Wings, I can understand the reasons for release, even if it was a schoolyard move. Going to be fascinating to see how the Red Wings react on their own ice, with their own crowd of lunatics behind them.

Everton are in a bit of a free fall. After an embarrassing and disgraceful 3-0 defeat at the hands of Wigan at Goodison Park that knocked them out of the FA Cup, I'm wondering how they react next week against Manchester City. The team is in disarray. There's little creativity in mid-field, the defense is woefully thin with the injury to Jagielka and Jelavic has not been effective up front in weeks. Plus you have the off again on again situation with Fellaini wanting to move to a bigger club. He was booed off the pitch yesterday after a passive performance against the Latics. If he continues like that, no one will want his services. Another reason this team is in crisis mode is the uncertainty of manager David Moyes. His contract is up at the end of the season and his stay at Everton will be reviewed at the end of the season. I'm not sure how much Moyes wants to stay in at Everton now. He has had little financial support from management in building a team, but when he does acquire a team, his tactics belie their abilities. He continues to rely on veterans who may be past their prime (Tim Cahill and Phil Neville) ahead of young players who are hungry for a chance to prove themselves. The last third of the season will be very telling. If Everton do not earn play in Europe I think Moyes leaves for another team.

Celtic are in first place in the Scottish Premier League, and are likely to be league champions for a second straight year. They were eliminated by the much in form Juventus from Champions League play this week, but gained some experience at top level play. A couple of players are likely to move on at the end of the season. Wanyama and Hooper are said to be moving on to England. Celtic are in the position of bringing in players cheap, then selling them at a good profit after developing them into quality athletes. An easy thing to do when, sadly, you are the only decent team in a poor league.

We're off to Glasgow next month and I have a ticket to the last game of the season against Hibs. I'm very excited to see a match in Celtic Park even though there will be little for the home side to play for.

The Crew have started play with a win and a loss. Still too early to tell what this season will bring.

Baseball's spring training has started. The Mets still do not have an outfield. General Manager Sandy Alderson has my number.

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