Author: Dawson Haywood
The Golden State Warriors are without a doubt the best team in the 2010's. Five finals appearances and three finals with the help of the Splash Bros helped change how the game of basketball is played. I would also like to give Golden State the Most Entertaining Team of the 2010s Award. Adding Kevin Durant into the mix created, in my opinion, the most heated rivalry the NBA has seen with Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder since the LA Lakers and Boston Celtics in the '70s and the '80s.
I would also like the give them the Most Influential Team (Behind MJ's Bulls) Ever Award because they played smart basketball. They took smart shots. Most kids in the world can't dunk a ball like Lebron or MJ. Most kids can drain a three pointer better than they can dunk a ball. Rec leagues around the US and maybe even the world are filled with kids that hack up three pointers before driving to the basket because of this Golden State team.
Because of their success on the court and the amount of influence they have, the Golden State Warriors have turned themselves into the fifth most valuable sports organization in the world behind the Dallas Cowboys, New York Yankees, New York Knicks, and the LA Lakers. The title of this article is "Golden State = Bad Business". Why? Well lets take a look at some players that were on the 2019 Finals team that is not named Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, or Draymond Green.
Demarcus Cousins was just recently waived by the Houston Rockets after playing off the bench behind Christian Wood. Now I get it. He got hurt and is not the same player he once was, but dang he could start in this league. I'd love to see him get picked up by the Hornets because he could easily start over Cody Zeller and Bismack Biyambo. Point is, the man is a dog and easily deserves a starting spot somewhere.
Damien Jones. In 2019 he averaged 17.1 minutes a game, had a 71.6% field goal percentage, and was overall a great role player for the 2019 Warriors. Since those finals he has hopped around the league playing for Atlanta, LA Lakers, and Phoenix. He was waived by Phoenix last month and is now working to secure his next 10 day contract
Quinn Cook. The 28 year old point guard who seemed to have a ton of potential back in 2019 is, like most players on this list, fighting for minutes. After the 2019 season the Lakers picked him up and is now with Cleveland. He has only played 65 games since the 2019 season and of those has only started one. I'm not going to pretend like he deserves a starting spot but his potential was wasted.
Alfonzo McKinnie is currently the fourth string power forward for the LA Lakers. I'm not going to make much of a case for him because throughout his career he has averaged 4 points a game while playing 11.9 minutes a game. On top of that he is 28 years old and is only in his fourth year in the league. Maybe could start in the G-League or overseas.
Jordan Bell has been bouncing from team to team since 2019 playing for Minnesota, Memphis, and Washington. He is a smaller center but could be a decent role player for a smaller team maybe at power forward. Bell was relatively efficient in shooting making over 50% of his shots.
Jonas Jerebko is one of those players on 2k that seem like a steal because his rating is high compared to his value in the game. The old man played in Russia since the 2019 season and is no longer playing basketball anymore.
Andrew Bogut collected his money in 2019 and decided to retire. He's old. He got his ring in 2015. Not much to say about Bogut.
Shaun Livingston played off the bench for Golden State in his last five seasons and was loved by all Golden State fans. Livingston bounced around the league from 2004-2014, paid his dues, and is now a three time champion with the Warriors.
Jacob Evans is the third first round pick the Warriors have picked in the span of three drafts to fall out of the league. Evans is currently in the G-League and is doing exceptionally well. Evans averages 9.9 points playing 24.6 minutes a game and is only 23 years old. He is still young and has a lot of potential and of all players on this list he is the player I would most like to see be a role player in the Association.
Kevin Looney is the only player on this list still playing with Golden State but is second string behind James Wiseman. At 25 years old he still has a lot of room for growth but it seems as if Golden State has given up on him since he was hurt in February. I hope this is not Looney's last season in the league because he is still young.
Finally, Andre Iguodala. Now playing for the Heat and is trying to make his eighth finals appearance in a row is currently playing the lowest amount of minutes of his entire career and has only started two games since being with Miami. He is third string behind Kelly Olynyk and KZ Okpala. Who? Don't get me wrong, Olynyk statistically is better than Iguodala but dang. I like to compare Iguodala's playing style to Lebron's and he has proven that he can carry teams to a championship. I'd like to see him get a more pivotal role with Miami because he is a team player and can win games. Maybe he is just a really good Playoff player. Unfortunately, he will likely retire once this contract is up.
So, to make my point, if you are a young player coming into the league if your only goal is to win a ring and not have a lengthy and meaningful career, Golden State is your place. I understand that Golden State does not really need to develop young player because they have players like Curry, Thompson, and Green which could all lead the team to a championship. The fact that these young players made it to the finals and are now struggling to make it in the league baffles me. Going to Golden State almost grantees that your potential will significantly drop. The average amount of time a player spends in the NBA is 4.8 years and it would be a waste to see player like Cook, Bell, Looney, and Evans play only 4.8 years in the league.
Going to Golden State is bad business for players looking to make it in this league.
Author: Dawson Haywood
The Sweet 16 of the March Madness tournament is my favorite round of the entire tournament. You've got your Cinderella teams, like Oral Roberts, whose stories are either going to continue developing or unfortunately come to an end and you have teams that have been powerhouses all year that are going to have to perform their very best to beat out the competitive competition. I can make all the predictions I want and for the sake of keeping the tournament interesting, I hope I'm wrong with most of these. With that being said here are my predictions.
#1 Gonzaga v #5 Creighton
Prediction: Gonzaga Win
Gonzaga has proven to be the cream of the crop this year and they do not look like they are slowing down. They have three dudes that could go in the first round of this years NBA draft. Jalen Suggs who knows how to run the point efficiently, Corey Kispert who can drain a three at any given moment, and Joel Ayayi who is a guard that gets boards like a big man. Don't sleep on Sophomore Drew Timme though who gets buckets with 18.8 points a game and is a very effective scorer with a 65.5 field goal percentage.
Creighton sneaks their way into the tournament every now and then and is a reputable team entering the Sweet 16. This is their first time in the Sweet 16 and they're out to prove they belong. Beating this Gonzaga team would be huge for the program. This team reminds me a lot of the 2014 UConn team in that they have the potential to blow up, even being a lower seed, and win this whole thing if they play to their true potential.
#6 USC v #7 OREGON
Prediction: USC Win
USC has arguably the best player in the NCAA this year with Evan Mobley. USC also has a phenomenal coach in Andy Enfield who has had five twenty plus win seasons in his eight seasons at USC. Two of which from the last two seasons. The fact that USC beat Oregon already and has the best player amongst the two teams gives them my bid for this game.
Oregon has been consistently good in the past few tournaments losing to National Champion Virginia in 2019 and losing in the Final Four in 2017. A win for Oregon would have to come off of Chris Duarte's back and his exceptional shooting. Oregon is a reputable team in the tournament and has a solid resume in the tournament. Oregon lost to USC by fourteen this past season and will be the second time they face off this year
#1 Michigan v #4 Florida State
Prediction: Michigan Win
Juwan Howard is a Champion. If you look up his name on any site the word "champion" shows up at least five times. Michigan won the Big Ten regular season championship and that is arguably one of the hardest things to accomplish in the NCAA this year. The conference is stacked. They know how to win. This is the first time since 1992 they are seeded number one and they lost in the finals that year. Michigan has been in the tournament eight out of the last ten seasons and is looking hard at the throne.
Florida State was the runner up in the ACC tournament this year and with Duke and Carolina performing less than standard this should have been their year to win it. Coach Hamilton received his 600th win this year and is an experienced coach. This will be his eighth tournament with the Seminoles and his clock is running out. Scottie Barnes and MJ walker will need to have the performance of their life to pull this one out with a win.
#11 UCLA v #2 Alabama
Prediction: Alabama Win
Alabama is arguably one of the most entertaining teams in the tournament because they came out of nowhere this season. From being a team that was barely breaking .500 to now being the number one team in the SEC in one season is miraculous. They are currently on an eight game win streak and show no signs of easing up. Alabama plays team ball and in the NCAA that can take you far.
UCLA placed fourth in a less than exceptional PAC-12 this year and came into the tournament with a four game losing streak. BYU was an impressive win, I'll give them that, but they do not have any games that they won that stick out to me that make me think they can make it much further than this.
#1 Baylor v #5 Villanova
Prediction: Baylor Win
Baylor, oh Baylor. Dunk city as I have heard people call it. The two losses they had this season I can excuse and still make an argument for them to win this whole thing. The trio of Butler, Teague, and Mitchell might be the best trio in the NCAA this year. This team is fast, explosive, and gets buckets. Not many teams that I have seen are averaging over 80 points a game but Baylor is. At this point I expect a Gonzaga v Butler final and who is to win that game? Flip a coin for me.
Villanova. Could they win this game? Yes. Do I see it happening? No. Am I letting my emotions of them beating Carolina in the 2016 National Championship get in the way of making this pick? Maybe just a little BUT Baylor is just that team. The Big East this year has been less than exceptional and 'Nova has lost a few games that it shouldn't have. If I had to put money on a game in the Sweet 16, it would be this one.
#3 Arkansas v #15 Oral Roberts
Prediction: Arkansas Win
It honestly pains me to predict an Arkansas win because I would love to see a small school, like Oral Roberts, make it further than the Sweet 16. All of Arkansas's losses this season has come from teams that are currently in the tournament.
Oral Roberts is in the Summit League and finished fourth. How they even made the tournament I'm not even sure. They also lost to Arkansas earlier this season so it pains me to say that it will happen again. I'll be optimistic and say they are more prepared and maybe since Arkansas beat them earlier this season they think it is a freeby which could lead to their defeat, but Arkansas is well coached and I do not see that happening. If Baylor loses and they wind up playing Villanova in the Elite 8 I can see Arkansas making it to the Final 4.
#8 Loyola Chicago v #12 Oregon State
Prediction: Loyola Chicago Win
I'm jumping on the Sister Jean bandwagon. Loyola has God on their side and are currently on an eight game win streak which includes beating Illinois in the Round of 32 and ACC Tournament Champion Georgia Tech in the first round. They are hot. I feel like if you don't go for Loyola this round God might send you to hell for a day.
Oregon State placed sixth in the PAC-12 regular season and I'll say it again, the PAC-12 was less than exceptional this year. They did beat Cade Cunningham and Oklahoma State which is very impressive and maybe they could beat a lot of other teams in the Sweet 16 but beating one player over two powerhouse teams is hard for me to overcome. Loyola to the moon.
#11 Syracuse v #2 Houston
I know, I know. This might be my dumbest pick in this whole article. But Syracuse I feel is very underrated and Houston I feel is very overrated. Their last loss was against a Virginia team that could have won the ACC tournament had COVID-19 not knocked them out. And they only lost by three. Their last three losses came from Virginia, ACC Tournament Champion Georgia Tech, and Coach K's Blue Devils. Had it not been for those powerhouses they would be really hot right now. So... Underrated
Houston is the most fraudulent team in the tournament this year. Don't let their 26-3 record despise you. Texas Tech is their only quality win this season and then they lost to Tulsa, East Carolina, and Wichita State. Cmon. Frauds
Final 4 Prediction
#1 Baylor v #8 Loyola Chicago
#1 Michigan v #1 Gonzaga
#1 Baylor v #1 Gonzaga
Andy Dalton and The Chicago Bears
Author: Dawson Haywood
Photo by: Getty Images
Being a Chicago Bears fan is arguably more difficult than being a full time college student. The amount of mental torment I have been through in the last decade because of this team really makes me question why I am even a fan. But, I stick with my teams through it all because hopefully, at some point in my life, I will see the Chicago Bears win at least one playoff game. I'm 21 years old so hopefully I have a good 50 to 60 years on this planet to see this happen.
When the Chicago Bears announced that Andy Dalton was going to be our Quarterback my initial reaction was "Bruh". My girlfriend and I were sitting outside of a tattoo shop and she probably thought I had a heart attack or maybe someone died. Well, a little piece of me did.
A stat that I really look at when determining if I like this guy or not is his QB record. Dalton has not had a winning season since the 2015 season and he is getting up there in age. I decided to cut him some slack because he was playing for Cincinnati and a Dallas team that had a lot of issues going on, so I did a little more digging.
The fact that his first five seasons with Cincinnati were winning seasons gives me hope because, like the NFC North, they have two teams, Pittsburgh and Baltimore, that generally can compete for the top two spots in that division. Then they have Cincinnati who, before the Browns became a relevant team, usually fell in the third position in the division. I'd like to compare this division to the NFC North because we have Green Bay, who dominates the division. Minnesota, who generally competes for the second spot with Chicago. And finally the Lions, who look promising this year but have always been last in the division.
From 2012-2015, Dalton led the Bengals to the wildcard round of the NFL Playoffs but never got past that. They have not been to the playoffs since. With just one year on his contract I am hoping that Dalton is out to prove that he belongs and exceeds expectations.
Dalton has been successful in the NFL before. Do I think he can do it again? Not really. Dalton has not had a winning QB record since 2015 and he is older now. I'm being optimistic when I say I believe Chicago can make playoffs this year but, like the last few seasons, a playoff berth is going to have to come from the backs of the defense. Now that fourteen teams can make playoffs I think it should be standard for every team to make playoffs.
Based off what us Chicago Bears fans have been experiencing this offseason it is evident that Chicago is in rebuild mode. If Chicago has a losing season this year and does not make playoffs I'll give it to them. It's what I expect. After this season though, I fully expect Chicago to make playoffs every year. If this year turns out to be crap like us Chicago fans expect, Nagy and Pace have to go. That is a whole different topic.
So, Andy Dalton, you have one year to prove to us that your last five losing seasons were not your fault. I really hope for the best but I expect the worst. That's what you have to do as a Chicago Bears fan.
Teams For and Against
Author: Dawson Haywood
Everybody has is a fan of a various number of sports teams. It would be a lie if I said a lot of my future post are coming from an unbiased opinion, so I'm not even going to try. This post will cover teams that I, Dawson Haywood, am for and against. If I do not mention a team in this post it is because I am neutral about them but these are teams that I am really for and really against.
Kannapolis Cannon Ballers
Oklahoma City Thunder
Any team Russell Westbrook is on
Green Bay Packers
Oklahoma State Cowboys
NC State Wolfpack
Any team from Pittsburgh
Any team Kevin Durant is on