12 Years Ago Today, Kobe Bryant Dropped 81 Points

It’s the 12 year anniversary today of Kobe’s famous 81 point game. The Raptors were in town against the Lakers and well, Kobe took over.

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Absolutely crazy statline. Of course, he didn’t break Wilt’s record of 100 but 81 points is still no minuscule feat. The most impressive of it all was that he managed to do so on nearly 61% FG. This was easily one of the top highlights of one of the greatest players to play the game.

The Patriots Complete the Comeback En Route to Their 10th Super Bowl

The Jaguars carried a 20-10 lead into the fourth quarter and had a chance to stop the Patriots on a key 3rd and 18 backed up in their own territory.

Let’s rewind real quick.

CBS hit us with a fantastic opener with almost countered the fact that we had to listen to Tony Romo all day

The Patriots opened up with a quick FG on a productive drive to make it look like they weren’t going to have any issues with the Jaguars defense. The Jacksonville offense, however, had other plans.

We saw Marcedes Lewis catch his only pass of the day on an easy, wide-open TD.

And then we saw a Fournette TD to put the Gillette Stadium on edge.

14-3 is not the greatest look against one of the best defenses in the league. The Patriots however did manage to drive down the field and get a TD before half (as they always do well) to go into the locker room at 14-10.  The bad news however, was that they lost Gronk to a brutal hit by Church.

 

It was a lackluster third quarter which saw the Jaguars take a 20-10 lead after two Lambo FGs.

The Patriots looked to be in trouble after a double-pass play from Amendola to Dion Lewis resulted in a fumble caused & recovered by Myles Jack. The Patriots got the ball back and were faced with 3rd and 18 and as all NFL fans know, this went exactly how you thought it would.

 

 

Amendola then capped the drive with a touchdown.

The Patriots then got the ball back and well .. you know how this one goes as well.

The Jags did put up a small drive to end the game but ultimately could not get the pass to Dede Westbrook as Stephon Gilmore (who has barely made a play all year) made the deflection of his career. The Patriots got the ball back and Dion Lewis finishes the job on third down.

Hats off to the Jags — Belichick is never that happy so this game was clearly in danger of being lost. However, in the end it just wasn’t enough to stop the Patriots for going for #6. The Jags will be back but it’s still the Patriots’ time.

 

P.S. Get that trophy the hell away from Bill if it’s not the Lombardi.

 

16 Years Ago Today, Tom Brady Won His First Playoff Game

Snow Bowl. Tuck Rule Game. January 19, 2002. Whatever you want to call it, it was the debut of the greatest quarterback of all time in the playoffs.

The game, of course, was not very high scoring with the Patriots winning on a Vinatieri field goal 16-13 in overtime.

Nobody hated the Patriots back then but this was the game where we learned of the tuck rule where Raiders fans will take to their graves that Brady got away with a fumble.

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The rest is history — the Patriots went on to upset the Rams in the Super Bowl and start a near 20 year dynasty while the Raiders went on to lose the Super Bowl the following year and fade into irrelevancy.

Revisiting the Minneapolis Miracle

It’s been about 5 days now since what may go down as the best NFL playoff finish ever. The Minnesota Vikings, led by long-time backup Case Keenum, were able to shock the Saints after a back-and-forth 2 minutes which both teams kicked go-ahead FGs. If that wasn’t enough to believe, take a look at the win probability chart:

And well the rest is history…

Even Case Keenum can’t believe what Case Keenum did. I wanted to let this sit for awhile to not give it the early reaction of being the best finish ever. Obviously the Music City Miracle was the first thing to come to mind.  It’s still an early reaction but this is a no-brainer for me. This is the best finish ever. How could you not like this — unless you’re a Saints fan of course.

Odin.Thor. Keenum. All Vikings legends.

The tackle attempt by Marcus Williams was of course an awful approach but he’s 20 years old and made a key interception in the game — the kid will bounce back. This season has been a great storyline for the Vikings and Case Keenum, who may not even be on the team next year with Bridgewater & Bradford both coming back. The Vikings of course are not able to ride homefield advantage all the way to the Super Bowl as the Eagles won their game.

 

PS — Reaction videos will never get old

Kris Dunn Eats The Floor After Dunk Attempt

The two-year NBA player won’t be smiling like that for a while. Kris Dunn went up for a dunk against the Warriors last night and well..

Didn’t go so great. He fell in exactly the worst way possible. He clearly needed Draymond to save him.

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I’m not sure if details came out yet but he had to lose at least one tooth there — today is not a good day to be Kris Dunn.

Isaiah Thomas Needs To Stop

Here we go again. IT and the Cavs return once again to the Garden on February 11th to face the Celtics. As you remember, IT declined the tribute video the first time he returned because he wanted his family to be there. Fair enough I suppose — the little guy did transform the franchise during a rebuilding period and is a big reason for the success of the Celtics now. Sure — nobody ever really declines a tribute video but we gave IT a pass there. Now he tweets out this today:

Isaiah, come on. Are we going to have to play him a tribute in the playoffs? This is why you don’t push it back. All of Boston loved IT, still does. The man put his heart on the line during the playoffs last night and pushed through when his sister died. All the respect in the world. Boston now lines up with Kyrie Irving who is an upgrade while IT and the Cavs are a disaster at this point.

There were some ramblings that Pierce was upset that they’d be showing the IT video during his night, which he should be. If IT would have just sucked it up and allowed the Celtics to show the video the first night he was back — this wouldn’t even be mentioned. Here we are now though, and at this point there shouldn’t even be a video shown. IT did great for the Celtics and he will always be appreciated but in the grand scheme of things, he spent 2 and a half years there. He’s not going to be mentioned with the Garnetts and Pierces of the Celtics and nobody is even thinking about retiring his jersey. He never actually won anything for the Celtics so it’s time to move on. Thanks for the memories IT but you shouldn’t really be dictating what’s going on in Boston anymore.

 

Ronaldinho Hangs Up His Cleats

The soccer world has lost a legend today as Ronaldinho has called it quits after an amazing playing career. This generation grew up with Ronaldinho and I’m sure he has influenced a ton of fans into playing and watching soccer.

He was impossible to hate and made everything look so effortless.  Of course, he was only playing in Brazil right now and not at a high level but the man made the game fun — which I wish a lot more players would do so today. In terms of entertainment value, Ronaldinho may have been the best player ever. He finishes his career with a World Cup, Ballon d’Or, a Champions League title, 2 La Liga titles, and a Serie A title. Not too shabby.

I leave you all with a highlight video and here’s to hoping someone comes along that is 50% as entertaining and skilled as ‘dinho.

Jaguars Shock the Steelers

 

We heard all week about how the Steelers were going to beat the Patriots — from the Steelers themselves. Mike Mitchell had a fantastic quote:

Le’Veon Bell followed it up with a nice Saturday night tweet (which has not since been deleted so good for him standing him ground):

And then this happened:

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The 2017-18 season where a team can score 10 points in a home playoff game against Buffalo and follow it up with 45 points at Heinz Field to knock off the Steelers. AND it’s the Jaguars that did it. Crazy.

The Jaguars raced out to a 21 point lead and looked to easily run away with it as Leonard Fournette passed Le’Veon Bell for rushing TDs at Heinz Field this year (crazy stat). However, the Steelers kept fighting back but could never get ahead again. Bortles didn’t play fantastic but he did just enough to keep his team in front of Pittsburgh and never allowed them to take the lead. Pittsburgh had some incredible TDs and Big Ben still threw 5 TDs on the elite Jaguars’ defense but it was not enough.

The Jaguars move on and everyone’s preseason prediction of the formerly 3-13 Jaguars against the Patriots comes true. The Jaguars certainly deserve some respect but run into the immovable object that is the Patriots next week for a chance to play in Minneapolis.

1/13 Divisional Playoffs Roundup: Patriots Destroy Titans

The Titans scored first and actually gave their fans a glimmer of hope that they’d be competitive and then the Patriots showed up. I’ll give credit where credit is due though — Corey Davis’ first TD of his young career was the first score of this game and was what we were hoping he’d be all here.

After that, well…it was all Patriots per usual. The Pats rode Brady’s 53 pass attempts en route to 35 straight points and an easy road win. James White added two TDs and the Pats allowed a garbage time TD to make the score 35-14, which honestly was not even that close.

Business as usual for the Pats as they’ll host the Jaguars next week at Gillette for a 7th straight appearance in the conference championship.

But at least we got to see Gronk and Amendola’s friendship go to the next level?

Fun stat of the night? Brady is 6-2 in the postseason when throwing 50+ times. In the Super Bowl era, all other QBs combined are 3-28.