Carlos Molina's blog

Fill That Opening

Mon, 05/14/2012 - 3:20pm
Carlos Molina
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The poll question on the oregonsports.com front page last week asked, “Will the Blazers have a new coach by the June 28 NBA Draft?”  In short, the answer is "no," because they may not even have a General Manager by then. 

Rumors have increased their swirls in recent weeks as candidates’ names continue to pop up.  Since Rich Cho got fired late last May, Chad Buchanan has been the acting GM, but he’s never exactly gotten a vote of confidence in public from the organization.  A month ago, Chris Mullin rumors swirled when he called back to back Blazers games for ESPN.  Steve Kerr’s name seems to come up weekly, but people seem to be ignoring the fact that Kerr is very happy with his TV gig, and loves having the freedom to be a family man, which was something he didn’t have the opportunity to appreciate during his stint in the Phoenix front office.  Atlanta’s Rick Sund’s name floated out there a few months ago, and nothing came to pass. 

Then there’s Mitch Kupchak from the Lakers and Geoff Petrie from the Kings.  Kupchak seems unlikely, but apparently his relationship with the Buss family has frayed in recent years.  Geoff Petrie has history in Portland, and a rough situation in Sacramento, where the team doesn’t know where it’s going to play in two years now that the arena deal fell through.  He used to work for the Blazers organization, and it seems Paul Allen wants to go in a new direction, so his name doesn’t carry much weight in the rumor mill.

This past week, the search has heated up, with Paul Allen conducting an interview with an unnamed candidate last Monday.  Portland announced this was in fact the third candidate they interviewed, after Steve Kerr and agent/former assistant GM Noah Croom.  They have also received permission to talk to David Morway, the Pacers GM that has successfully built the team with the fifth best record in the league from bits and pieces he picked up in the late lottery/mid first round.  Sure, Larry Bird is the architect, but that’s some pretty good on the job training Morway has received.

Morway is the best candidate name that’s come up, with his track record of rebuilding a team that was in shambles after the Malice at the Palace by drafting in similar spots to where the Blazers will be drafting for a while.  With the Pacers’ playoff run still going, don’t expect to get an answer from him, or many of the other candidates they’re considering.  There won’t be an answer before the draft lottery at the end of May, when the Blazers will know if they have one lotto pick or two, which could sweeten the deal for any prospective employee.  In the end, if Paul Allen and company are going to handcuff the GM and make the draft decisions anyway, why bother hiring one before the draft?  Seems like the position could be open for at least a bit longer.


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Lostradamus' All-NBA Ballot

Mon, 05/07/2012 - 12:53pm
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Last week, Sportsland, Oregon did an NBA playoff preview, covering first round series, awards, and All-NBA teams.  Then, Mike ‘Stats’ Donovan came on for a second episode to go deeper into All-NBA teams. 

Here are the All-NBA teams, as I would vote for them:

1st Team

F:            LeBron James

F:            Kevin Durant

C:           Dwight Howard

G:           Kobe Bryant

G:           Chris Paul

 

2nd Team

F:            Kevin Love

F:            Dirk Nowitzki

C:           Andrew Bynum

G:           Tony Parker

G:           Dwyane Wade

 

3rd Team

F:            Pau Gasol

F:            Carmelo Anthony

C:           Marc Gasol

G:           Steve Nash

G:           Russell Westbrook

 

This week, the playoff analysis continues, along with some Timbers, Derby, and Boxing talk from a great weekend of sports.  Check out Sportsland, Oregon here on oregonsports.com, recorded every Monday at 9 p.m. at Blitz in Portland's Pearl District.

 

Belated Meta Playoff Preview

Mon, 04/30/2012 - 3:16pm
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The NBA playoffs have begun, and Sportsland, Oregon presents A Belated NBA Playoff Preview Pod.  A few Game 1’s are in the books, so there’s a bit of an advantage in throwing out predictions after seeing how the series have started out.  Frankly, none of the weekend’s results have changed my opinion on how the series would end up.  Without further ado, here’s a preview of the Preview Pod.  How meta.  Or is it Metta?

WEST

Spurs – Jazz:  San Antonio rolled an over-achieving Utah squad in Game 1, and there’s no way they would lose to an 8 seed in back to back years.  Yes, the Spurs overachieved this year also, but in a less surprising way.  Spurs in 5.

Thunder – Mavs:  Dallas had a great chance to steal Game 1 against a young team without much playoff experience.  Then the Durantula stepped up.  Look for the Mavs to even the series after going home, but ultimately dropping their title defense in 6.

Lakers – Nuggs:  Speaking of overachievers, my surprise pick of the year got in as a 6 seed and had the unfortunate luck of running into the Andrew Bynum Wall 10 times.  The altitude will allow them to get one at home, but Denver doesn’t stand a chance in the long run.  Lakers in 5.

Grizzlies – Clips:  What I predicted to be the most compelling series of the first round proved true when the Clips needed a 28-3 run to close out the game and win by 1. This one will go the distance, unless this collapse psychologically ruins Memphis.  Grizz in 7.

EAST

Bulls – Sixers:  What could possibly go wrong with having your superstar albeit fragile MVP out in the last 2 minutes of a game that’s already been decided?  An ACL explosion, that’s what.  Bulls advance in 6, but their goal was a ring, and that’s not happening anymore.

Heat – Knicks:  What many expected to be a thrilling first round series featuring the two free agent superteams has the potential to become a clunker after the Game 1 rout the Miami laid down.  LBJ vs Melo will have to wait until Game 2 to Heat up (Rim Shot).  Heat in 5.

Pacers – Magic:  Orlando stole Game 1, but the overachievers from Indianapolis will prevail in the long run against a shorthanded Magic team, unless it’s a case of addition by subtraction for Dwight Howard.  Pacers in 6.

Celtics – Hawks:  I lied.  This is the only series where my opinion has changed after Game 1.  Rondo’s suspension after bumping a ref has doomed the C’s, who were experienced and peaking at a good time.  Now, the Hawks should be cruisin’ in the ATL.  Hawks in 6.

Check out an in depth discussion on the rest of the Playoffs on Sportsland, Oregon. 

Nothing's Broken, But It's Sore and Needs Fixing

Mon, 04/23/2012 - 6:08pm
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Left quad tendonitis, right knee tendonitis, right hip surgery, dislocated right shoulder, bronchitis, and family reasons.  No, this is not the injured list from your grandpa’s Boca Raton Bocce Ball team.  This is in fact the current state of the Tralblazers for the final two games of what can really only be referred to as a dreadful season.  These afflictions correspond to Nicolas Batum, Jamal Crawford, LaMarcus Aldridge, Elliot Williams, The Vanilla Gorilla, and Raymond Felton, respectively.  Not to mention, of course, the careers of Greg Oden and Brandon Roy. 

With a team shutting down people like that at this time of the year, you would not be wrong to be suspicious of a tanking franchise, but the Blazers are already locked into the 11th worst record, so tanking is pointless.  They can’t get any better.  Or worse, depending on how you look at it.  That sums up their season perfectly.  At the beginning of the year, they weren’t built to win the championship, and it didn’t look like they would be much worse than 10th in the West.  As we discuss on Sportsland all the time, stuck in the middle is the worst place to be.  Now, at the end of the year, they are trying to blow it and rebuild, and can’t even tank properly.  The 11th pick in a debatably deep draft is still the 11th pick, not exactly a place to find gems. 

With Raymond Felton starting through the injury, Portland opened the game with Matthews, Hickson, Babbit, and Thabeet.  On the one year anniversary of Brandon Roy’s 18 point 4th quarter against the Mavs in the first round, the brightest spot of the past 366 days is now over a year behind Rip City.  It’s time to look to the future, and build around Aldridge’s All-Star ability.  Tonight on Sportsland, we’ll discuss who’s audition for the future looked best.  It’s all Blazers fans have to look forward.  That, and the Brooklyn Nets’ pick. 

And The Year Goes On

Mon, 04/16/2012 - 7:19pm
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It’s a weird time of the sports year in Portland.  The Blazers have five games left and nothing really to play for, so much so it looks like they’re shutting down some key guys.  The Beavers and Ducks just opened up spring practice, but there’s nothing really to follow there.  Sure the diehards want to see how some of the new signees that manage to get there early do, or who’s going to fill in at any positions vacated by guys leaving for the draft or graduating.  In reality, there are no scores, and there’s no news to really follow, and so much can and will change between now and when the season opens that people really only follow it to have something to follow. 

College baseball is underway, and the WHL playoffs are underway, but the fanbases for these are much more limited.  And then of course there are the Timbers, but they don’t have the built in excitement of an inaugural season to carry the interest of the casual fan.  Couple that with their struggles this year, and even the excitement of early season soccer and the Army’s antics aren’t enough to maintain interest or make it enjoyable to be a Portland sports fan.

But never fear, the Sportsland, Oregon crew can find sports stories from across the country to make things interesting.  From the NBA playoff picture developing, to the NHL playoffs providing their usual excitement and even more fights than ever, there’s plenty to follow in the world of sports.  And of course, don’t forget early season baseball.  All that and more on this week’s episode of Sportsland, Oregon.

A Fantastic Fantasy Draft

Fri, 06/24/2011 - 3:02am
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In honor of the NBA Draft, the oregonsports.com crew decided to conduct our own version of a fantasy draft on the Sportsland, Oregon podcast earlier in the week.  Instead of basketball players, we drafted sexy celebs to create the perfect cast for our ideal fantasy movie.  The only requirements were that we have one TV Actress, one Movie Actress, one Supermodel, one singer, and one athlete on the roster.  We also threw in a Wild Card spot for any celebrity that didn't fit one of these descriptions, and one Cougar Coach spot for an aging star to guide her squad to victory.  Now it's up to you the reader to decide which of these teams is the hottest.  Cast your vote for your favorite team, and be sure to check out the podcast either on iTunes or under the Shows tab here at oregonsports.com for the complete live draft, and the backstory to this amazing draft-day tradition.  Now for the Final Rosters:

 

Los                                         

TV:  Christina Hendricks

Movie: Scarlett Johansson

Model: Brooklyn Decker

Singer: Katy Perry

Athlete: Anna Kournikova

Wild Card: Erin Andrews

Cougar: Stacey Dash

 

Derek

TV: Yvonne Strahovski

Movie: Megan Fox

Model: Ana Beatriz Barros

Singer: Cheryl Cole

Athlete: Allison Stokke

Wild Card: Jenn Sterger

Cougar: Jennifer Love Hewitt*

 

Cliff

TV: Sophia Vergara

Movie: Amy Adams

Model: Carolina Ardohain

Singer: Rihanna

Athlete: Sanne Keizer

Wild Card: Petra Ecclestone

Cougar: Dyanna Lauren

 

Mike

TV: Cote de Pablo

Movie: Aishwarya Rai

Model: Kate Upton

Singer: Beyonce

Athlete: Michelle Wie

Wild Card: Nicole Briscoe

Cougar: Angie Everhart

 

Round by Round Results

Round 1:              1) Brooklyn Decker, 2) Yvonne Strahovski, 3) Sophia Vergara, 4) Beyonce

Round 2:              5) Katy Perry, 6) Megan Fox, 7) Carolina Ardohain, 8) Michelle Wie

Round 3:              9) Scarlett Johansson, 10) Cheryl Cole, 11) Amy Adams, 12) Kate Upton

Round 4:              13) Christina Hendricks, 14) Allison Stokke, 15) Sanne Keizer, 16) Angie Everhart

Round 5:              17) Anna Kournikova, 18) Ana Beatriz Barros, 19) Rihanna, 20) Nicole Briscoe

Round 6:              21) Erin Andrews, 22) Jenn Sterger, 23) Petra Ecclestone, 24) Cote de Pablo

Round 7:              25) Stacey Dash, 26) Jennifer Love Hewitt,* 27) Dyanna Lauren, 28) Aishwarya Rai

 

* - We know she's not a Cougar, but Derek had no one over 40 on his auto draft board, so we took the oldest available.

Sportsland, Oregon: 11/23/2010 - #38

Wed, 11/24/2010 - 3:13am
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In the first part of an extra long holiday podcast, Los and the gang delve into the Blazers injury woes and their outlook for the rest of the season, and discuss the action around the rest of the league. Then they move on to BCS talk, including possible championship scenarios, Black Friday, and awards winners. This is all followed by the NFL, and early seasoncollege basketball action.

In Part 2, Los and the gang wrap up everything else they missed in Part 1, including NCAA Women's soccer, Baseball Rookie's of the Year, High School football playoffs, Kentucky vs Portland in Men's basketball, and this week's segments, including This Week in Oregon Sports History and What Plucks My Duck.

Sportsland, Oregon: 11/15/2010 - #37

Tue, 11/16/2010 - 3:08am
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In the first part of a two part episode, Los and the gang open up with their concerns about the Blazers situation, specifically Brandon Roy's comments and health. After that it's on to the world of college football, with plenty of Ducks talk after their tight win, which inevitably leads to BCS Championship talk and Heisman Trophy predictions. They wrap up Part 1 trying to figure out who the best team in the NFL is.

In Part 2, Los and the gang wrap up everything else they missed in Part 1, including NCAA Women's soccer, Baseball Rookie's of the Year, High School football playoffs, Kentucky vs Portland in Men's basketball, and this week's segments, including This Week in Oregon Sports History and What Plucks My Duck.  You can check it out in the nifty player on the right.

Sportsland, Oregon: 11/8/2010

Fri, 11/12/2010 - 1:55am
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Back after an extended break, Los and the gang start off a packed show by remembering the great Maurice Lucas on the day of his memorial.  They also delve into the Oregon Ducks National Championship chances, the Portland Pilots Women's Soccer National Championship chances, the Blazers' start to the season, and some NFL talk.  Check it out at blogtalkradio.com/oregonsportsradio, sportslandoregon.blogspot.com, or in the nifty player on the right.

Sportsland, Oregon: 10/18/2010

Tue, 10/19/2010 - 12:04pm
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In this week's episode, Los and the Oregonsports.com crew discuss the year's first BCS Rankings. They also commend OSU for its 2ot loss to Washington, and apologize to PSU for causing their last second heartbreaker.

In a Special Edition NBA Preview, Lostradamus and the Oregonsports.com crew analyze everything you need to know about the upcoming NBA season. From the Blazers' outlook to the end of year awards, plus playoff predictions and teams to watch out for. They also come up with a new nickname for LaMarcus Aldridge at the end of the show, in addition to the usual weekly segments.

Check it out at: SportslandOregon.blogspot.com  or at blogtalkradio.com/oregonsportsradio

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