Sports Agenda for Monday (1/21/13)

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(Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

(Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

Miami Heat

Big Story:
We have the matchup for the Super Bowl in two weeks and it’s gonna be a defensive game. The Heat went looking for any big man help they could find yesterday. The Florida Gators humiliated my Missouri Tigers on Saturday. The Panthers got started in a big way. And a thought or two on this ceremonial inauguration day.

Quote of the Day:
“I do the very best I know how – the very best I can; and I mean to keep on doing so until the end.” – Abraham Lincoln

Super Bowl XLVII:
The matchup has been set as we’ll see brother against brother with Jim Harbaugh’s San Francisco 49ers against John Harbaugh’s Baltimore Ravens.
The Ravens will be playing to send the best defensive player in a generation out with a second Super Bowl ring.
The 49ers will be playing to reestablish themselves in the upper echelon of the NFL after being dormant since the 1990’s.
Offensively, the teams are not exactly alike.
San Francisco likes to run the football, while Baltimore rides Joe Flacco’s arm for all it’s worth.
Baltimore’s defense will line up and smack you in the mouth, which San Francisco’s will also do if Justin Smith is healthy.
My gut tells me to favor the 49ers in this one, but only because a strong running game can overcome other issues. Ask Notre Dame!
But, it’s still a long ways from Super Bowl Sunday and I’m sure I’ll waffle a little between the two.
I did love the comment Terrell Suggs had about the Patriots…
“Them them (The Patriots) to have fun at the Pro Bowl. These are the most arrogant pricks in the world starting with (coach Bill) Belichick on down. Ever since Spygate they haven’t been able to win.”
That’s what you would call fighting words there.
I remember seeing Suggs standing next to Vince Wilfork a couple of years ago at the Pro Bowl…if Wilfork got angry, my guess is he could probably snap Suggs in half, and trust me, Suggs ain’t a little guy.
Still it was kinda humorous watching the CBS team rip Belichick for not talking after the game.
I don’t know what they expected, I mean the guy was coming off getting his butt handed to him this year and let’s not forget what the Giants have done to him the last two times he’s gone to the Super Bowl.
Ouch…that’s gonna leave a mark.

Miami Heat: (off until Wednesday)
Well, the Heat went out and signed the Birdman yesterday.
Yup, Chris Anderson and his psychosis is coming to the Heat.
I don’t know exactly what to say about Anderson, except that he will at least keep things interesting.
He’s got enough tattoos to make Dennis Rodman blush and his hair cut would make Mr. T proud.
That said, he is 6’10” and can jump out of the gym, or at least he used to be able to.
Interesting side note, he went to the same junior college Cam Newton went to before the future Heisman Trophy winner went to Auburn.
Anderson hasn’t appeared in more than 45 games since 2009-2010 and averages 5.2 points per game.
Depending on his defense, which honestly it’s been so long since I’ve seen him play I can’t tell you, he’ll be a decent addition if he can still jump.
The Heat also signed Jarvis Varnado to a second 10-day contract, so he’s apparently making a good impression on the coaches.
And finally, the Heat also recalled Dexter Pittman from the D-League to the main roster.
So let’s see this, Anderson is 6’10”, Varnado is 6’9”, and Pittman is 6’11”.
Yeah, I’d say the coaches are a little bit nervous about the team’s rebounding woes at this point in the season.
Hopefully, one of those guys develops into something serviceable on the boards and can at least give a few baskets a game.
We’ll see if any of them can fit in. If I had to money on one of them, I’d go with Anderson or Varnado.
But that’s just me.

Florida Panthers: (@Ottawa Senators, 7:30 p.m.)
Get ready hockey fans, because this season is going to come fast and furious for the next few months.
The Panthers got things started with a thumping of Carolina.
Good news for the Panthers…the penalty kill unit was great.
Best news for the Panthers…Jonathan Huberdeau scored his first goal and looked great in his rookie debut.
I’ve been writing about Huberdeau since his draft, I think he’s going to be a big time superstar in the NHL.
The Panthers will be on the road tonight and tomorrow night against Ottawa and Montreal before returning home for another game against Ottawa and then a home game against the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday.
It’s great to see the Cats back on the ice, hopefully they can follow up last season’s division championship with another one and a deeper playoff run.
Here’s something funny…
The Panthers, Dolphins, and Heat have all made the playoffs since the Marlins have.
Yes, the Marlins are the worst franchise in pro sports, er, well at least Miami.

Inauguration Day:
Finally, allow me to take off my sports hat and put on my political hat for a minute.
President Barack Obama officially began his second term on Sunday, but Monday will be the public ceremony.
It’s an interesting time for the country as a whole.
President Obama’s first inauguration brought a certain hope with it for a new America. Little did he know the Republicans in DC concocted a plan that very night to block every single policy initiative he had through any means necessary.
Since then, we have had partisan gridlock the likes of which has never been seen in Washington.
Even during the violent civil rights days, Congress wasn’t as dysfunctional as it is now.
For some reason, the Republican Party has tapped into a part of the American psyche that had been relegated to the fringes.
It’s become quite disturbing to watch as there is now not just a partisan disagreement, but a true hatred coming from many Republicans and GOP leaders.
I’m all for partisan division and opinion, but respect is something that should go along with it.
I have friends who are Republicans and as much as we may disagree, we ask each other questions and try to come to a common ground.
You won’t find that in Washington any more.
President Obama is vowing to take a more aggressive strategy in his second term.
Well, that would be a start after getting run over like Notre Dame’s defensive line in the BCS Championship game during his first term.
But in reality, what good will it do?
Republicans are fighting the very thing that helps an economy recover, stimulus spending by the government, in the name of austerity.
Democrats are fighting making any substantive changes to Social Security and Medicare to help the long-term status of the programs.
Here’s an example of how easy it is to fix things, but leaders make it too difficult.
Lift the current salary cap on Social Security taxed earnings, which is around $115,000. Get rid of the cap entirely and let all income be taxed for Social Security.
The CBO said that would pay the program for the next 70 years.
Problem solved, deficit for that gone.
Medicare, allow the government to negotiate for the best prices on medications and such.
Health care costs cut in half, possibly, but costs would go way down.
Cut Medicare benefits for the super wealthy, simple idea to give more to those who have less.
Reform the defense department spending and cut any program that was for previous forms of warfare.
You’re looking at trillions in savings right there and it took me what, three minutes to write that.
We should all look back at the words of Abraham Lincoln during the height of the Civil War…
“With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.”

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