- Evan Longoria and the Rays are stuck with each other for a long time. The all-world third baseman (who can't stay on field, but that's for another day) inked a $100 million contract over 6 years that will keep him with Tampa through 2022. That's not a misprint. 2022. He already signed what some people have called "the most team-friendly deal in history" coming out of triple-A, but this one will likely end up more on his side as he's making $22 million at age 37. Either way, Tampa's best hitter isn't going anywhere.
- Monday Night Football wasn't exactly a good match-up last night. The previously 2-8 Panthers up-ended the previously 3-7 Eagles by a score of 30-22. Cam Newton was the best player on the field, scoring 4 touchdowns (2 pass, 2 run) and that was really the story. On the Philly side, the bright spot was certainly the work of backup RB Bryce Brown, who got the start in place of the injured Shady McCoy and ran the ball 19 times for 178 yards and 2 scores. Impressive.
- In the Association last night, the Battle of New York led the way. Brooklyn outlasted the Knicks 96-89 in overtime in a make-up of the previously scheduled season-opener. Brook Lopez led the Nets in scoring with 22 points while adding 11 rebounds, and Deron Williams put up a 16-point/14-dime effort in support. On the New York side, it was a tail of Raymond Felton's poor shooting as he shot 3-19 including a stretch where he took 5 shots in 7 possessions in the 4th quarter as the lead slipped away. Carmelo Anthony was superb with 35 points and 13 rebounds, and Tyson Chandler had his best offensive game of the year with 28 points (on 12-13 FG) and 10 boards. It simply wasn't enough.
- Elsewhere in the league: San Antonio obliterated the now 0-12 Wizards 118-92. No one played more than 26 minutes for the Spurs and the game wasn't this close. Milwaukee rallied from a 27-point deficit to get a 93-92 road win in Chicago. This was a non-typical Bulls effort in that they got blitzed 30-12 in the 4th quarter with porous defense. Utah went to 6-0 at home with a 105-103 win over a game Nuggets team. Al Jefferson led the game in scoring with 28, but Derrick Favors' 19 points and 7 boards in 24 minutes off the bench keyed the win for the Jazz. And finally (and most hilariously), the Thunder/Bobcats game last night was an absolute massacre. OKC led 64-24 at the half, and 79-25 early in the 3rd quarter before taking their foot off of the gas. Neither of those scores are misprints and things were as ugly as humanly possible for Charlotte. The Bobcats shot 22% in the 1st half and 29% for the game, while allowing OKC (typically a one-on-one type of offensive team) to assist on 31 of 40 field goals. I could list stats for days on this one, but just know that it was as bad as it sounds.
What to watch for on Tuesday (in chronological order)...
- 7:00 - NBA - Mavericks @ Sixers (NBA-TV) - Dallas is playing without Dirk, Philly may be without Andrew Bynum indefinitely (insert laughter here)... Must-see TV!
- 7:30 - NCAAB - #18 NC State @ #3 Michigan (ESPN) - The ACC/Big 10 challenge is here and the match-ups are awesome this year. This is the opener for ESPN and Michigan is a legitimate national title threat for the first time in 20 years. I'm not giddy at all.
- 9:30 - NCAAB - #14 North Carolina @ #1 Indiana (ESPN) - Two of the most storied programs ever and one of them is #1 in the country. The difference this year is that its Indiana. Cody Zeller is the real deal.