Tag Archives: jon gruden

A snap reaction to snap reactions aimed at the Tampa Bay Lightning and the 2018 NHL Eastern Conference Finals

I don’t know if it’s a casual fan base element, bandwagon fans or actually faithful of the Tampa Bsy Lightning who put on the panic hats if and when the Lightning struggle or fail to win… I know there’s an element of the die-hard fans who are like this – one of them is a good friend of mine – but I do know they have come out of the woodwork during the Lightning’s Eastern Conference Final series with the Washington Capitals after the disappointing opening games of the series.

To those who are crying that the Lightning are missing a piece of the puzzle in the roster, I’d like to welcome you to hockey or to the Tampa Bay Lightning from your original team. What’s worth citing as missing is your experience as a Bolts fan and your knowledge of the Tampa Bay Lightning roster and what it’s capable of.

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On Tampa Bay sports disappointment and media coverage

A disappointing season in sports – both professional and amateur — is just that, a disappointment, a downer. Things don’t go as planned and the results are lesser than you (as a fan) wish. It’s something that you can’t hold against a high school or college team while the pro sports competitive disappointments can be outright atrocities of a competitive kind, run asunder by a multitude of choices by management as well of incidents of both a competitive variety and by bad luck.

The 2016-17 Tampa Bay Lightning season is a disappointment of a competitive nature where bad luck (injuries) and a horrible schedule played part in the Bolts not roaring into a competitive, playoff-bound position that has become a constant the last three seasons. There was a noted attitude problem in the Lightning locker room, and once that was brought into check the team turned up its competitive vibe and is where it is now: Just outside the playoff bubble with a scant chance of making it and a growing chance of missing the playoffs.

It’s a disappointment, yeah. Yet the strength of the team hasn’t collapsed, things haven’t been put asunder with bad coaching or low quality management moves. For the casual fan that’s locked in on disappointment in the trades of Ben Bishop, Brian Boyle and Valtteri Filppula: They weren’t going to stick around long term by way o the salary cap and costs to do so. Bishop and Boyle will be unrestricted free agents come July 1st, Filppula was due to become one in the summer of 2018. With the club already working with a very tight salary cap, retaining them over retaining forthcoming restricted free agents Ondrej Palat, Jonathan Drouin and / or Center Tyler Johnson just couldn’t be done.

Disappointing to lose fan favorite players, especially Bishop who was such a steady hand in the crease. But when looking at the broad picture, at the “Yzerplan” that accentuates player development, it’s understandable as something that had to be done.

To cut that short: shit happens. Ho hum. Next season is going to be something worth checking out, just as this season was, and the season before…

In comparison to professional sports in the history of the greater Tampa Bay Metropolitan area which has existed 40+ years, this season of Lightning hockey ranks a hell of a lot higher on the disappointment list than oh-so-many others coming from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Rays and Lightning. All that history, all the back-story of each club doesn’t gain web-clicks or sell newspapers at the immediate moment though.

See, Tampa Bay Times (and former Tampa Tribune) sports columnist Martin Fennelly made a bold decree that this Tampa Bay Lightning’s season is the biggest disappointment in the history of Tampa Bay sports. He does quick-quick takes of other top-tier disappointing seasons for local clubs, but highlights the current state of the Lightning as “desperation hockey” and the reason why this season is the top disappointment – ever.

That’s where I’ve been revitalized as a sports blogger, because something so limited in view, perspective and opinion got the green light from the only newspaper in the region. Something so inane, random and weak didn’t just get published – it’s going to get someone his paycheck because he put words down and it fit a column length requirement. Continue reading

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by | March 22, 2017 · 8:17 AM

The Year in Review — Yuccaneers indeed

“Four and Twelve seems like a real possibility.”

You know, I got a bit of bashing for having this bleak outlook at the Bucs this season. I saw things going in a direction that was counter-productive to what fans wanted and what the NFL trend was and you know what? The Bucs got just what they deserved, those who thought I was full of shit and expected another playoff-run got what they deserved and I get to deal out humble-pie for a change.

God, you do not know how much of a dick I feel like righ tnow and how bad I feel about it. I wanted to be wrong about hte Bucs this season. Hell, I needed to be wrong about the Bucs this season in order to be proved wrong about the state of the franchise post-Gruden acquisition. Yet I was proven right and there is this impending sense of dread with the coming offseason that the Bucs will try to jump right into contention again by spending on past-there-prime players and we’ll end up completely fucked because of it.

Jon Gruden, the man who can do no wrong in certain fans eyes because he brought the Bucs to the promised land, needs a swift kick in his ass and his yes-man office assistant, Bruce Allen, should be fired post-haste before they further fuck things up by doing what Jon wants to do without regarding the wellfare fo the team. There is indeed a way to get the Bucs back to contention and it isn’t by signing players for more than they are worth, going after names and reputations instead of talent, etc…

This off-season, the Bucs need to cut the bullshit with the free agent spending. It’s rebuilding time and instead of going after everyone on the market (and former Raider players) they need to go after young talent that needs a chance to shine in starting roles instead of on special teams or what not. They need to say goodbye to Michael Pittman and Charlie Garner, Mario Edwards and others that were brought in during the 2004 off-season and start a youth movement.

That also means keeping around Derrick Brooks, Simeon Rice and some of the rest of the veterans on the squad. Not because the Bucs need to keep some aspect of contention but they need to keep some aspect of leadership and direction. Brooks gives them that and Rice give them taht on defense (along with Ronde Barber). Mike Alstott gives them that on offense along with Cosey Coleman, Joe Jervacius, etc.

They need to let Brian Griese walk isntead of further being cluster-fucked with the Salary Cap by agreeing to his 8 million dollar option. They should bring in journeymen QB’s and le tthem contend for the starting psoition against Chris Simms. You can make chicken salad out of chicken shit at the QB position — look at Jake Delholme. He was nothing until he got a chance to start with Carolina and the rest is history.

Gruden, with a roster of youth and hungry players, needs to run one fo the tightest ships he has ever run…. Along with one of the most intensive training camps that he has ever run. He’s been stradled with superstars since taking over head coaching duties for the Riaders a few years ago… Without having a huge cast of big-name hired guns, he might just get the clue that he’s going to have to have patience and actually coach and not just shout orders. He’ll have to lead and teach instead of just expect results from players that were brought along under someone else’s system.

2005 would turn into a painful experience for some – a hopeless endeavour… But then again, it would right the ship long-term by foricng the Bucs back into the building mode instead of Gruden’s ill-planned “retoolings” of the roster.

I expect retooling instead of building this offseason again, however :-(. I expect Brooks and Alstott to be cut instead of the true fat on the roster – the dead weight. All because Jon Gruden’s ego is so much bigger than his talent. He’s an overglorified Offensive Coordinator who’s gotten carte blanche of the Tampa Bay Buccaneer franchise and will run it into the dirt before he will concede that he’s fucked things up with his acquisitions and his preferences.

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Humor Me — Buccaneer Web log

Anyone interested in working with me on a Buccaneer Web Log?

Yes, the Bucs suck right now… Yes Bruce Allen is a moron… Yes Jon Gruden needs more humillity… That doesn’t mean to say we shouldn’t support Los Buccaneeros on the web — even in criticism.

And for those who are unsure why I bring up the idea of a Buccaneer web log…. Seeing I already own and operate Boltsmag, I figure a Bucs blog wouldn’t be a bad addition…

Just post comments if you’re interested… we’ll talk.

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Gruden and Bush – uncanny similarities

You know, I could talk up and down about he Presidential Debate last night (“You forgot Poland!” ) but I digress. That’s what all the other political blogs are for…. Soemone came off like a politician and someone came off hapless… That’s all I am saying.

However with Los Buccaneeros de Tampa Bay falling assunder — looking at going 0-4 for the first time since 1996 — I couldn’t help but start thinkign about Gruden and Bush last night. I mean, the debate put El Presidente on my mind and of course any Tampa Bay resident is going to put the Bucs on their mind at one point or another.

  • Bush came into power and was blessed with the state of the economy and state of the federal budget which the previous administration helped along. He was handed a world that wasn’t embroidered with peace but if he acted decisively and quickly – he could have dealt with a lingering foreign problem… September 11th happened (which was tragic) and people started to blindly follow him through the days that followed.

    Jon Gruden came into power with The Buccaneers blessed with the Buccaneer roster anda shrewdly managed salary cap that the previous head coach helped along greatly during his tenure. He was handed a team that was dominant but couldn’t win the whole she bang, but if he acted decisively and quickly – he could turn the team into not just a one time Super Bowl champion but a dynasty. The Bucs were coming off a first round loss to the Philadelphia Eagles (again) which featured an inept offense (which was tragic) and people started to blindly follow Gruden (after he was hired) because he seemed to be the answer to things.

  • Bush went to War with terror. Patriotism went through the roof and the man could seemingly do no wrong.

    Gruden brought the Bucs to the Super Bowl and won. Team frevor went through the roof and Gruden could seemingly do no wrong.

  • Bush went off on a tangent and wanted to attack Iraq, and verbally sparred with his allies when they wouldn’t agree with his plans.

    Gruden went off on a tangent and started to attack his free agency carelessly, and verbally sparred with his General Manager when he (Rich McKay) wouldn’t agree with hsi plans.

  • Bush continued to do as he pleased and sold Iraq on false pretenses…

    Gruden continued to do as he pleased and cut John Lynch on porrous pretenses

  • Bush surrounds himself with sychophants in his administration in order to continue with his carekess plans without opposition

    Gruden surrounded himself with a sychophant (Bruce Allen) in the organization to continue with his careless plans without opposition.

  • Bush’s cronnies made bad tactical decisions (Fallujah, Hallburton, etc)

    Gruden’s cronny has made bad tactical decisions (signing Darrell Russell, Signing Charlie Garner, etc)

  • Bush doesn’t think of the Future with the national debt, tax cuts and costly defict spending.

    Gruden diesn’t think of the Future with his shunning of rookies, trading draft picks and costly/careless signings.

  • Bush will not fess up to his mistakes

    Gruden will not fess up to his mistakes

Maybe it’s just me, but this is how I see it. The similarities stop at the fact Bush can be kicked out of office in November and Gruden is contractually signed for a long time to come….

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Four and Twelve seems like a real possibility

I haven’t talked about the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a real long time… I think the last time I put up a post was in January where I gave a general sports roundup. Of course, my sports eye has been on my primary love in Tampa Bay — The Lightning — and that means the Bucs (who I grew to love during their hapless years) have taken a back seat.

Before anyone lays into me about being a bandwagon fan, I support the Buccaneers and haven’t turned a blind eye because another team in town won a championship. The Bucs earned my love over the years from miserable to respectable, and the Lightning won my love since their inception and I place hockey just ahead of football because it was a sport I liked to compete in.

Anyway, I haven’t abandoned the Bucs but I have to turn my eyes because of the train wreck the franchise has become.

Lets go to January of 2003 first and foremost and Jon Gruden / The Tampa Bay Buccaneers winning the Super Bowl. When Jon won the title, little did fans know it gave him carte blanche over the Buccaneer Franchise. A team assembled by Rich McKay and Tony Dungy was put over the top by Jon and of course we all loved him for it because this was the Buccaneers finally reaching the paramount of the NFL after being as low as you could get for so long.

Things fell apart last year as Jon Gruden started to follow a trend that previous Buccaneer coaches have shown and fallen with — Absolute power corrupts absolutely. The Glazer’s catered to his every whim and the only guy who stood in his way was Rich McKay…

Was, past tense. Rich left the only franchise he had known and went north to Atlanta… Jon was allowed to keep walking the walk he wanted and the Bucs continued the downward spiral.

A trend from Oakland seems to be in place here — not just a desire for veteran players over building a team from the ground up with talented youngsters, but also a “Just win, baby” mentality that tells players their off-field antics amount to shit as long as they perform on the field.

Case in point – Michael Pittman remains on the Buccaneer roster even though he is guilty of ramming his car into his wifes vehicle with children inside. He faces possible jail time and Jon Gruden could give a shit.

The Bucs picked up another ass-clown from the Raiders in the form of Bruce Allen who cut one foo the greatest players in Tampa Bay Buccaneer history – John Lynch — and signed one of the most notorious players in NFL history — Darrell Russell, who drugged a girl and taped him and his friends raping her.
Allen went so far as to compare Russell with former president Bill Clinton and said the rapist is guilty of less crimes than Clinton. (side-note, Allen’s brother is a Republican Senator in Virginia)

I could keep going with moves the Bucs have made and crimes their players have committed since the Super Bowl Championship, but I can’t. It’s watching a train wreck as it occurs and their are more people than just myself who can see this. For the first time since Raymond James Stadium was opened, their are tickets available on Ticketmaster for Buccaneers games this late after the initial public offering of tickets. The Bucs boast a season ticket waiting list of 110 thousand but all it takes is filling out a form online in order to do so. Somehow, my name is on the Season Ticket waiting list and I hate watching football in person. I didn’t sign up and I don’t have the foggiest clue how I got on there…

The number is artificially inflated and more than half of those on this waiting list would not invest in the current product on field.

I look at the Buccaneers this season and I see the train wreck in progress. I feel bad for guys like Derrick Brooks and Mike Alstott who are pillars in the community and who will be cut lose if it meant a marginal offensive tool could be picked up. The once vaulted defense is in shambles and Jon Gruden was given a contract extension before the season to continue is free reign over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

6-10 may be a reach but 4-12 is still a possibility this season. Break out the orange, it’s Yuccaneer football all over again.

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Long Overdue Sports Roundup

Well, I have totally avoided the subject of sports for the most part — I don’t mean certain sports topics because I know I have left a couple of sports entries the past month but I haven’t written much of anything with concern of los deportes since October 2003 with the Marlins winning the World Series, and there is always a vast allotment of things to talk about with regards to Pro Sports that I have passed over for the sake of just being a lazy ass….

So let me get cracking with regards to sports and my sports world here in Tampa Bay. Where shall I begin?

I made a post in October regarding the Bucs vs. Indianapolis Colts and expect the Bucs to get a win and my friend Bill’s new born niece to get a “birthday present”. I never, however, posted the fact that Los Buccaneeros de Tampa Bay went ahead and blew the game. That game and the utter let down by both the offense and the defense basically summed up the Bucs season from that point on — full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. The once dominating Tampa Bay defense turned into a shell of itself. The over-hyped Jon Gruden offense was a disaster area, committing penalty after penalty in order to kill drives and kill chances of victory. Former University of Florida offensive lineman Kenyatta Walker was horrendous with regards to committing infractions at the worst times….

And this was just the start of things.

Jon Gruden and Keyshawn Johnson clashed and Jon Gruden deactivated Keyshawn at midway through the season. This caused a great deal of conflict in the Buccaneers front office, along with other problems that weren’t known to the average Buc fan. Rich McKay, Buccaneer General Manager and son of it’s first head coach, Jim McKay, ended up leaving the team because of conflicts with Gruden. Some people might have sided with Jon Gruden and his “Just win, baby” style that he picked up from Al Davis while he coached with the Raiders, but I’m someone who believes that McKay was the more-valuable between the two. McKay built the Buccaneer team that went on to win the Super Bowl in 2003. He helped turn the Buc franchise around from perennial losers to the winning franchise it has been the last 6 years.

But now he’s been shown the door…

He wasn’t very fond of some of the low-quality personnel that Jon Gruden was after — low quality when it comes to moral standards and length-of-rap-sheets and I am one that agrees on that. I guess it’s the fact that I saw Tony Dungy – a high quality person and a moral leader – come into the Bucs, change them into winners on field, and expect players to perform on field and be respectable off it as Dungy did. When players got into trouble while Dungy was head coach, it would mean that you would soon be shown the door if your infraction was big enough. I’m not talking about missing team meetings, I’m talking about crimes that players get away with so often in society.

The Bucs finished 7 and nine, there worst finish since 1998. Looking at 2004 with Gruden and Ray Allen, newly hired GM from the Raiders, in charge…. i don’t hold optimism toward the team for one reason or another. Maybe it’s parity alone that spoils my optimism for the club or perhaps it is the “Just win” attitude? The mystique is gone for the time being… When it returns for me is anyone’s guess.

Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Lightning seem on a rebound as of late after falling into the gutter through November and December. After a white-hot start, the team fizzled through the next 24 games and only now dseem to be turning the corner back towards winning – and even now, that isn’t certain. Looking at the problems the Bolts have faced, I have been somewhere in the middle with regards to firing John Tortorella or just making a trade to shake up the roster and bring in some new blood. I personally believe that a new player – an upper echelon type of guy, could have helped the team get back to winning but hindsight is 20-20… it also might have led to destroying the chemistry of the team…

Pete Rose is all over the news because he finally came out and admitted he bet on Baseball. It’s an awkward situation because Rose took the hoopla away from the Hall of Fame ballotting that happened this week and also hasn’t won over any traditionalists in baseball. The sympathizers (like myself) think Pete should be in the hall regardless… The traditionalists think the lifetime ban should stay in place because now there is proof Rose committed the cardinal sin of Baseball by betting on games…

Only time will tell if Pete gets his just due and gets enshrined in the hall.

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I CAN'T LOOK! I CAN'T LOOK!!!

Anyone who knows me knows I love the Buccaneers — or did love the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Maybe they were hapless in yesterday, maybe they were oh-so-close and that’s why I loved them. Right now I can’t bring myself to love them, or even watch them for that matter. On this first day of Autumn (or is that tomorrow?) I can’t bring myself to sit down and enjoy the game like I would usually do.

“Why?” you ask. Well, The problem is there is differences in this offense and this team compared to the old teams. There was this “They could do it! They just got to do a little bit more than the basics to get it done!” attitude to everything in the past. In fact I grew up on Slam-mouth football (running the football and passing on key downs alone) with the New York Giants and the Buccaneers under Tony Dungy… Yet now with Jon Gruden, the team has become a flying circus or it at least feels like it is being one under Gruden’s playcall.

Barely any running, giving too many attempts at the pass… Not owning the clock, not giving the defense a chance to rest… Just ATTACK, ATTACK, ATTACK. It just is NOT how you should play football unless you have a significantly weaker opponent. And you RARELY get that in the NFL.

At any rate, I’ll update you all (or key people) how I am doing later on… Right now I need to vent. I need to eat. I need to drink. I need to get my ass in gear and WRITE my next assignment.

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Gobble Gobble

Turkey Day….

Just what am I thankful for? Just what is there to be thankful for?

For starters, having readers like you actually viewing my web page. Hello, how are you? 🙂

I’m thankful for electronics and for the mesh of the electronic and the biologic that gives me a chance to hear again.

I’m thankful that George Dubya Bush hasn’t blown us all to hell yet – though I don’t think it will be much longer if the fool gets to remain in charge for a while.

I’m thankful for the internet….

For Sarah Marie….

For Target Corporation and giving a guy who can’t hear that well a chance to do a job on the sales floor.

Speaking of Target, I’m thankful I still have use of my legs, feet and arms after getting worn out pushing, shoving and lifting stuff and putting them on to shelves.

I’m thankful for Jon Gruden, for the Glazer family proving that they aren’t as incompetent as they are shrewd, for the Tampa Bay Buccaneer sand 9-2 as of this writing….

For the Tampa Bay Lightning proving me wrong and starting off very hot this season. I am very thankful for that.

For Lou Pinella Coming back to TB to coach the Devil Rays who play like Deviled Eggs.

For the Beatles and Sony Music not suing my ass, and for the fans who supported me while they threatened… I am most certainly thankful for this.

Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving everyone 😀

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