Week 12 free NFL point spread picks

My Week 11 record was 2 – 3 record. I’m 29 – 28 after 11 weeks barely over .500 and in need of a great week. This season has been tough to find a group of teams playing well either at home or on the road. This is the first time this year that I will only take underdogs to cover.
My 6 picks this week are:
Arizona Cardinals against the Seattle Seahawks (-6)
The Cardinals defense is ferocious and confident. They will contain Russell Wilson’s read option runs. The Seahawks are no longer the dominating team that won the Super Bowl last year.
Take the Cardinals + 6
Cleveland Browns versus Atlanta Falcons (-3)
I love the Browns who may win the game outright. The Falcons have won all their games this year against NFC South opponents. The Browns superior defense will create turnovers and the return of Josh Gordon will help the offense.
Take the Browns + 3
New York Jets versus Buffalo Bills (-4)
The Jets have a great defense and the poor weather condition will make it tough for the offenses to make big plays. The Bills still have playoff hopes and need this win to keep them alive. Michael Vick’s running ability will be the difference in the game. Two average teams meet more often than not it is a 3 point game.
Take the Jets + 4
Tampa Bay Buccaneer against the Chicago Bears (- 5.5)
The Lovie Smith Bowl, it will be interesting to see if Jay Cutler can respond to the pressure of beating his former head coach. Coach Smith was fired because Cutler never developed as a franchise quarterback. The Bucs defense will be prepared for the Bears deep passes. Josh McCown had success last year with the Bears has a chance to beat his former team in Chicago.
Take the Bucs + 5.5
Cincinnati Bengals versus Houston Texans (-1)
The Bengals have their keys players back from injuries and are the better team. The Bengals should be able to beat the Texans in Houston despite J.J. Watts dominance. The Bengals are very good at beating teams theya re supposed to beat.
Take Bengals +1
Miami Dolphins against Denver Broncos (+8)
The Dolphins are a physical team that plays power football that is the type of team that gives the Broncos a hard time. The Broncos seemed to have lost their mojo and Emmanuel Sanders might not play due to a concussion. The Broncos biggest concern is their defense haven’t made big plays in the last few weeks.
Take the Dolphins + 8
Good luck this weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Many talented Black NHL players this season

There are many talented Black NHL players this season having statistical success. The group is talented enough that people who are fantasy pool owners should consider drafting. There are currently six Black players in the top 150 in scoring: Kyle Okposo of the New York Islanders (22nd), P.K. Subban of the Montreal Canadiens (79th), Wayne Simmonds of the Philadelphia Flyers (83rd), Joel Ward of the Washington Captitals (123rd), Trevor Daley of the Dallas Stars (129th) and Jarome Iginla of the Colorado Avalanche (149th).
The Winnipeg Jets Dustin Byfuglien and Evander Kane will end up in the top 200 before the year is up. The remaining seven players are: Anthony Duclair (New York Rangers), Ray Emery (Philadelphia Flyers), Seth Jones (Nashville Predators), Johnny Oduya (Chicago Blackhawks), Ryan Reaves (St. Louis Blues), Chris Stewart (Buffalo Sabres) and Darnell Nurse (Edmonton Oilers).
There are 706 players who played a minimum of one game this year and 15 of them were Black, which means 2.2%. There might be more players of colour than teams within the next three years.
The OHL All-star team that beat the Russian select team on Monday had team Captain Darnell Nurse, Jordan Subban (highest scoring defenseman in the OHL) and Joshua Ho-Sang (he had 3 points that evening) in the line-up. All three have been drafted and Nurse has already played 2 games for the Edmonton Oilers.
Malcolm Subban is in the American Hockey League (AHL) this season with Providence.
Caleb Jones, Seth’s brother plays for the USA developmental team and may represent his country at the World Juniors tournament this year.
The presence of the Black hockey will continue to grow because many players in Canada and the USA are very good players.
Do you see an increase in Black hockey players? Do you have a Black player on your fantasy hockey team?
Enjoy your day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

S.I. should have Subban cover in USA also

The Sports Illustrated magazine decided to use the P.K. Subban cover only in Canada, while the USA cover will feature the New England Patriots running back Jonas Gray. The S.I. team felt no one in the USA really cares about hockey except the Stanley Cup Champion.
The New England Patriots winning another football game, they have a two game lead in their division and look like Super Bowl contenders what a surprise? How many people are shocked and want to read about the Patriots being an excellent football team again? Free agent Patriots running back Jonas Gray was one yard short of reaching the 200 yard mark is a typical story in the NFL. The undrafted free agent who blew out his knee his Senior year of college will now get a big contract in the summer.
Sports Illustrated didn’t see it as an opportunity to feature a Black athlete who is an excellent NHL player, is a member of the most storied franchise in the league (Montreal Canadiens) and is an alternate Captain on his team. The Canadiens are the New York Yankees of the NHL. Subban is a Black athlete who is succeeding in a predominately white sport. There are over 600 NHL players and only 15 Black players presently. He was the first Black player to win the Norris Trophy.
S.I. prevented their American public a chance to learn about the Subban’s strong family unit. His parents raised five kids with the three boys who were all drafted in OHL, NHL, all represented Canada internationally and the two girls have university degrees. The feature was an opportunity to show the mass media that there is a positive Black athlete role model who is smart, articulate, talented and rich without the issues that would lead to negative press for him and his family.
I hope the S.I. didn’t think the Subban cover would not sell because he didn’t come from an impoverish situation, didn’t have to overcame a missing father figure, no criminal accusations nor children out of wed lock and speaks well. Why can’t a positive Black role model playing a sport not called Football, Basketball, Baseball, soccer, boxing or MMA fighter be on the cover in the USA? My neighbour’s seven years old Black boy has started to play organized hockey this year because of Subban. Maybe it would have put the thought of being a professional hockey player in a few African-American kids.
I’m tired of seeing all the negative press and how the media only want to inform the world the negative stereotypes about Black male athletes. There is no attempt to talk about the ones who are acting like role models and taking the responsibility seriously.
Should Subban’s S.I. cover be also sold in the USA?
Enjoy your day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

The Bulls pulled a “Spurs” on the Clippers

The Chicago Bulls beat the Los Angeles Clippers in L.A. without Derrick Rose and Pau Gasol. The Clippers made a run in the fourth and it seemed like they would find a way to win instead the Bulls threw the ball inside and won easily 105 – 89. Coach Tom Thibodeau’s team won the third quarter 31 – 14, which was almost the difference in the final score.
The Bulls have two back-ups who would start for most NBA teams in Kirk Hinrich and Taj Gibson. Hinrich as the starting point guard has kept Chicago as a playoff contender during Rose’s two year absence. He is used to playing heavy minutes and at a high level. Gibson is the reason Carlos Boozer no longer played in the fourth quarter for the Bulls last year, was waived and subsequently signed by the desperate Los Angeles Lakers.
Jimmy Butler is the breakout star for this season and we can expect him to make his first of many All-star teams representing the East and all-defensive team this year. A young wing player who can actually post-up a smaller defender (Chris Paul) was the key in the final minutes in the victory. Butler also held NBA All-star and FIBA team USA member DeMar DeRozan to a 3 for 17 shooting night. I just hope Coach Thibodeau somewhere along the season either gives Butler a few nights off or reduce his minutes in order for him to be ready for the playoffs. Butler player over 45 minutes in last night’s victory. Please don’t run Butler to the ground like he did with Luol Deng.
The Bulls will represent the East in the NBA Finals as long as their top 8 players are healthy. Sorry, top 7 players because there is no guarantee Rose will be healthy for the playoffs. Mike Dunleavy is getting comfortable in his role as three point specialist (4 for 7 from the three point line) and Nikola Mirotic had 12 points in 18 minutes last night will continue to improve. Aaron Brooks is an offensive catalyst with his minutes depending on Rose’s health.
The Bulls are the best defensive team in the Eastern Conference and now their offense is starting to click with the additions of Gasol and Mirotic. The Bulls are the best in the East.
Who is your pick for best in the Eastern Conference?
Enjoy your day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

RG III should let his play do the talking

Robert Griffin III circus show is in a downward spiral and he will not be able to prevent the crash. The more RG III speaks and tweets it seems like a whiner who has no self-confidence. He is one of the Captains and likes to stand in front of the media to state he is the leader and his teammates trust him.
The Washington Football Club have won three games this year and none were with RG III as the quarterback. Kirk Cousins (1) and Colt McCoy (2) who are not as athletically or physically talented as Griffin who hasn’t had a great season since he blew out his knee. The media and fans love the back-up and McCoy was the hero with back-to-back wins.
Many players, fans and media thought McCoy should have started against the Minnesota Vikings after leading his team to two wins. He is not a quarterback that will lead a team to the playoffs, but he can help a team win 9 games.
RG III is the franchise quarterback still says he feels that he is one. Griffin doesn’t need to remind everybody that he is because the Redskins sacrificed their future by trading many picks to the St. Louis Rams and committed financially to him. He got huge endorsement deals with Adidas and Subway. RG III is supposed to be the Golden Boy of the NFL who had the intangibles black quarterback, exciting player, smart person (graduated a year in college) and was personable.
RG III stands at the podium and takes no responsibility for losses. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost is partially his fault as the quarterback and leader; he just needs to admit that he played poorly. He had three turnovers with 2 interceptions and had a fumble. The Minnesota Vikings lost 2 weeks ago he couldn’t lead his team in the final drive to an opportunity to kick a winning field goal. The comments about the team has to better around him should be saved for the locker room not the media. How he handles interviews is a thing that separates a leader from a player who is disliked.
The Griffin III inner circle should advise him that he should stop talking and let his play do the talking. He has to understand if Washington wins he is a hero; if his team losses his is the reason.
Washington has 6 games remaining with four games against playoffs teams.
Will RG III be cut after this season?
Enjoy your day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

Bills should bring back Manuel

The Kyle Orton experiment has gone on long enough. Orton doesn’t make any spectacular plays that could help his team, but he doesn’t do anything that would make you lose either. He has a 3 – 3 record this year, is a 32 year old 10 year veteran with no upside and the Bills won’t get much more out of him. Orton has a .500 winning percentage during his 8 year career (38 – 38).
E.J. Manuel the 16th pick in the 2013 NFL Draft is a 24 years old with a bright future and could use the pressure packed games while his team in the playoff hunt would be great for the development of Manuel’s future as the Bills franchise quarterback. He is athletic and can use his legs to create plays.
Coach Doug Marrone and the Buffalo Bills organization have to make a decision who will be the starting quarterback next season Manuel or Orton? Yes, the team has to decide this now because Manuel needs to play to improve. He and Sammy Watkins are supposed to be a lethal combination for many years to come.
The Bills lose to the New York Jets this weekend then Manuel should start the rest of the season. They will not win the Super Bowl nor make the playoffs with Orton at the helm. There is no guarantee that Manuel could accomplish either feat, but he has many more years to develop into a playoff quarterback. He would need to start again this year to move to the next level.
The loss of key offensive players C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson hasn’t prevented the Bills from staying in the playoff race. The New England Patriots will win the Division again and Miami Dolphins could be the second playoff team in the division this season.
The Bills last 6 games will be against the Jets, Browns, Broncos, Packers, Raiders and Patriots. The Bills will end the year with minimum 2 losses against power houses Broncos and Packers with the Patriots playing their back-ups because they may have a playoff spot before playing Buffalo.
Should Coach Marrone play Manuel or Orton?
Enjoy your day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

KG wants to own the Timberwolves…

It is great to hear Black athletes speaking in terms of being an owner and LeBron James wants to be a Billionaire. Michael Jordan is the majority owner of the Charlotte Hornets, Shaquille O’Neal is a minority owner of the Sacramento Kings and at one time Magic Johnson owned 10% of the Los Angeles Lakers. Magic has sold his Lakers shares and now part of the group that owns the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The African-American athlete’s transition from high priced athlete to the next 30 working years before retirement is a struggle for many. The EPSN 30/30 team did a great show on the inability of former athletes to invest and save their funds; therefore, being broke within 5 years of retiring.
The comments are refreshing to hear and even if he accomplishes his goal or not it will make a few Black athletes think of the possibility that they must think of themselves as more than just entertainers. The professional athletes are no longer just making money playing a sport. They have the possibility to have million dollars endorsement deals, autograph signing appearance fees could be more than six figures for top stars, and they can start their own businesses during their careers or start having sport camps named after them.
There is no reason Black athletes can’t own something that generates money instead of depreciating after it is purchased. KG grew up watching Jordan, Magic, Shaq, Puff Daddy and Jay-Z are making more money as owners and being their own brand will make them a lot more money than they did as entertainers for less work.
It will be interesting to see the kids of the athletes who received $100 million dollars to play a sport use their money to make more money? The Black millionaires could essential set a high bar that would show the World that there is more than one way to being Black.
The Black Nouveau Riche (people who acquired wealth in their own generation) could own a bigger piece of the pie and have their kids’ transition to Old Money (wealth that is inherited). This legacy would guarantee many generations of their blood lines would be rich with a great possibility of being wealthy someday.
Could you name Black athletes who will leave enough money to their kids for a few generations to be wealthy?
Enjoy your weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

MLB needs to add the “Rooney Rule”

In Major League Baseball there are 30 managerial jobs and only 2 are held by minorities, which are Llyod McClendon (Seattle Mariners) and Fredi Gonzalez (Atlanta Braves). The MLB had 10 minority managers in 2009, which was their highest total during the league’s existence.
The ten minority managers were: Manny Acta, Dusty Baker, Cecil Cooper, Cito Gaston, Fredi Gonzalez, Ozzie Guillen, Jerry Manuel, Lou Pinella, Willie Randolph, Don Wakamatsu and Ron Washington. This list has 5 African-American, 4 Latino and 1 Asian American.
The 2014 MLB season began with 5 minority mangers: Rick Renteria, Ron Washington, Bo Porter, Llyod McClendon and Fredi Gonzalez. Washington quit, Porter was fired and Renteria was replaced by Joe Maddon, which leaves only 2 minority managers with only the Tampa Bay Devil Rays position available.
There are 4 invisible minorities who are from Italian-American don’t count as visible minorities. Their race doesn’t make them minorities it is there ethnicity. Robin Ventura, Terry Francona, Mike Scioscia and Joe Girardi would not be discriminated against in the “Jim Crow” era.
The majority of players are White (63%) with Black (8.3%) and Latinos (28.2%); therefore the possibilities for a baseball manager to be White increases dramatically. The amount of Cuban players coming to the MLB will increase the percentages of minorities and dominating players who may produce more with managers who understand them. The reason for the “Rooney Rule” is to at least get Blacks and Latinos an interview for openings.
Many of the best players on an MLB team are minorities and having a Latino or Black manager would improve communication with their star players. The Toronto Blue Jays and Chicago White Sox have a high number of players who are Latino or Cuban would be great candidates for Latino managers.
The Tampa Devil Rays apparently are interested in Raul Ibanez, Barry Larkin and Doug Glanville who are all minority candidates. It would still give the MLB a poor record for diversity in terms of hiring managers. They are the worst of all professional sports in North America because the NFL have 5 Black head coaches and many Black candidates get interviews.
Do you think the Devil Rays will hire a minority?
Enjoy your weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com



Week 11 free NFL point spread picks

My Week 10 record was 2 – 3 record. I’m 27– 25 after 10 weeks and in need of a great week. This season has been tough to find a group of teams playing well either at home or on the road. This is the first time this year that I took 4 favourites to cover.
My 5 picks this week are:
Denver Broncos against the St. Louis Rams (+8)
The Broncos are great at blowing out teams that are weaker than them. Shaun Hill will be starting his first game this year as a Rams starter. The Broncos edge rusher Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware will have a great game collapsing the Rams pass protection.
Take the Broncos – 8
San Francisco 49ers versus the New York Giants (+3)
The 49ers defense is getting healthy against an undermanned Giants offense. Aldon Smith and Ray MacDonald return to an already very good defense is bad news for the Giants. The 49ers offense will pond the ball with Frank Gore and play filed position. San Francisco will continue their playoff.
Take 49ers – 3
Cincinnati Bengals versus the New Orleans Saints (-7)
The Saints are pissed off after a heart breaking loss at home last week against the 49ers. The Bengals played a vanilla defense last week against the Browns because their 2 starting middle linebackers were hurt. Drew Brees will have an awesome game.
Take the Saints – 7
Houston Texans against the Cleveland Browns (-3)
The Texans will start Ryan Mallett for the first time this season, which will make Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins very happy. The Browns are playing extremely well right now on both sides of the ball. The Texans defense should be able to create pressure and turnovers.
Take the Texans + 3
The Oakland Raiders against the San Diego Chargers (-9)
The Chargers had a week off and the Raiders haven’t won a game yet this year. The Chargers defense is excellent and Rivers will recover from a few bad games before the bye week.
Take the Chargers – 9
Good luck this weekend!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com

NFL: Wilson, Kaepernick, Newton and RG III

The top 4 African-American quarterbacks in the NFL are being questioned about their durability because of their style of play. Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick, Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III each one of them is expected to run the read option, run for first downs and three of them are playing in an offense that only has one back with them in the backfield.
The top three rushing quarterbacks so far this year in terms of yards and attempts are Wilson, Kaepernick and Newton who have 21 more carries than the fourth quarterbacks in attempts Ryan Fitzpatrick (36). Ryan Tannerhill might break into the top 3 in terms of total yards if he continues at this pace. RG III is presently ranked 24th and is one good rushing game away from being in the top 10. Link for QB rushing leaders: http://pickingpros.com/nfl/quarterback-rushing-leaders.php
Their athletic ability is the gift that makes them special, but at the same time it is a curse because their organizations and fans expect them to do something spectacular with their legs if a play breaks down. The offensive coordinators can’t eliminate the read option plays or ask them to throw ball out of bounds when a play breaks down because each one can more often than not beat a defender despite poor blocking to either make a great throw or run.
The top 4 White quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees also play with only one back in the backfield. The difference is when they fake a hand off to their running back it is called a play-action pass not a read option. They will either throw the ball for a completion or out of bounds to avoid a sack that is a huge difference in mentality. Their ranking in the QB rushing list: Rodgers (11th), Brees (27th), Brady (38th) and Manning (55th) which makes them stay in the pocket passers.
The Black quarterbacks are not thought that concept because they can sometimes escape the pass rush, which often leads to 10 to 20 yards sacks that can kill momentum, put them out of field goal range and lose field position for their team.
The White quarterbacks training makes it possible for them to excel even with limited mobility due to injuries because they are used to playing without the option to run. On the other hand watching a Black quarterback try to play without his mobility due to an injury exposes their inability to read a defense and release the ball quickly to the open receiver.
The one factor no one mentions is the offensive coordinators number one job with the immobile White quarterback is the protection. They will make sure to have very good offensive linemen, backs will stay in to block, and sometimes tight ends will help offensive tackles against speed rushers also the running back will use the chip block before running their pattern.
Can someone explain me why these techniques, schemes and tactics are not used when a team has a Black quarterback especially when they are hurt and lost their mobility?
I agree with the analyst that Wilson, Kaepernick, Newton and RG III will not have a long career if they continue to play depending on their athletic ability to make plays while not being encouraged or take the onus to learn how to read coverage, release ball quickly or occasionally throw a ball out of bounds to avoid losing a field goal attempt.
All 4 Black quarterbacks have played in the playoffs: Wilson has won a Super Bowl and Kaepernick has lost in a Super Bowl and Conference finals.
Will Wilson, Kaepernick, Newton and RG III play long enough to be Hall of Fame players?
Enjoy your day!
You may comment or contact me on Twitter @AlixtheGambit or e-mail at Jadesronvil@gmail.com


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