Thoughts for this week

Steve Lavin, the next coach of St. John’s. I like this hire. I personally would have preferred a Pitino or Knight, but Lavin is an excellent choice. St. John’s is finally acting like the big time college program it once was and as the only major college basketball program in the NYC area, should be.

Speaking of college basketball, this year’s tournament only further validates my view that the NCAA tournament is one of the best sporting events in the world. St. Mary’s, Butler, Cornell, Baylor and Northern Iowa? Come on, I knew some of these teams were good, but nobody expected this! At this point, i’m still hoping for a Big East champion, but Butler has been very impressive.

Brittney Griner is the most dominant female basketball player I have seen since Chamique Holdsclaw played for Tennessee. She was a high-school sensation two years ago, and has continued that in college. If you’ve never seen her play or watched women’s basketball, you need to watch this girl play.

Sunday afternoon she and the Baylor team goes against a UConn squad that has not lost in 70+ games. Don’t be surprised if Baylor wins-Griner is that good. Of course, it’s not a game of 1 on 5, but it will be an entertaining match

Looking at the rosters of both the Knicks and the Nets, it’s hard to believe, but the Nets have more talent on their roster than the Knicks do. The Nets have an All Star caliber point guard, a very good power forward/center in Brook Lopez who will be an All Star very soon, and decent role players-Lee, Yi, Dooling & Douglas-Roberts. If they manage to attract even one top flight free agent, they will be a force next season. Of course, the Knicks will be getting Lebron + one, so they will be instant contenders also. Next season promises to be a very good one for the local NBA and college teams.

I’m not a big Manchester United fan, but I hope Wayne Rooney recovers quickly from his most recent injury. No fun if Chelsea beats them and they’re not at full strength, considering Chelsea has been battling injuries all season long.

The New York Mets suck! They should have fired Minaya and kept Randolph. They have no chance of being a contender this season, which is a shame considering they have one of the five best pitchers in baseball as their ace.

I hope they finally wise up this year and trade the perennial underachiever Jose Reyes-he’s dogged it before and he’ll do it again. Rebuild the Mets, please.

I think the one team that no one’s looking at that will be a major contender this season is the San Francisco Giants. They have one of the top three rotations in all of baseball and if they manage to add another bat to their lineup, this pitching will keep them in contention all season.

I don’t need to explain why the Yankees will win again this year, right? Well lets start with this; they have the best rotation, closer and lineup in baseball, as well as the best owner in sports, an owner who is committed to winning and puts his money where his mouth is.

If you don’t like Steinbrenner and the Yankees, think about this-baseball has a luxury tax system where every dollar above the threshold means you pay a likewise amount in taxes/penalties. It was meant to deter the teams like the Yankees from outspending every other team. What happens also is that the tax money is distributed among all the other teams in baseball. So all the other owners are getting FREE MONEY every time the Yankees or Red Sox go out and spend hundreds of millions.

So what are the other owners doing with that money? If you’re a fan of Kansas City, Milwaukee, San Diego or another of the teams that lose consistently, what’s your team doing with all that money? I can tell you they’re not upgrading the talent on the field. And that is why Steinbrenner is the best owner in sports. He is determined to win, and will spend the money to do it. Sometimes he loses, but 28 World Series and countless playoffs shows that a lot of times he wins.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the owner of YOUR favorite team acted like that too?