Big bucks for wide receivers is bad news for several other positions

There are currently 12 wide receivers in the NFL with contracts that earn them an average annual value of $20 million or more. Nine of those contracts — Chris Godwin, DJ Moore, Cooper Kupp, Davante Adams, Tyreek Hill, Mike Williams, A.J. Brown, Terry McLaurin, and Stefon Diggs — were signed during this offseason. Just…

Read more…

Le’Veon Bell and Adrian Peterson will continue the tradition of retired pro athletes turned boxers this summer

Most recently, we’ve seen Frank Gore leave the gridiron, throw on a pair of boxing gloves, and get it on. In his first bout, he fought former NBA point guard Deron Williams. Gore lost that bout via split decision only to return to the ring a few months later, on his birthday, to claim his first professional victory in the ring.

Advertisement

And everyone remembers Nate Robinson, albeit in a celebrity boxing setting, running into the ring and swiftly being shown the exit. While Peterson and Bell should be closer to the same experience level, this fight might be just as big a disaster as Robinson’s nap on the canvas.

Advertisement

I’m not mad at Bell, Peterson, or any other former pro athlete who decides this is the route they want to take once their primary sports career ends. But we don’t want to see these guys get in the ring and look like has-beens. I’m sure there isn’t anyone besides the two fighters who expect this fight to resemble anything close to a boxing clinic.

If someone is willing to pay these amateur fighters who just happen to be former pro athletes large sums of money to get in the ring, then I say go for it. Because the truth is, once most of these athletes retire for good from their sport, that’s usually it. Once that spotlight disappears, it doesn’t return for the overwhelming majority.

Advertisement

There are always a few exceptions, like Michael Jordan, LeBron James (once he retires), Charles Barkley, Deion Sanders, and probably even Tom Brady once he officially calls it quits. And then some choose the media route upon retiring, but even then, most of them fade into the background sooner than later.

Getting into boxing immediately after retirement is another way for guys who are used to a certain level of physicality to still be physical and get paid for it. I’m just hoping they take it seriously and approach boxing with the same intensity and vigor they did their respective sport.

Advertisement

I’m interested to see how long it takes for either Peterson or Bell to get tired and drop their hands. While they’re pro athletes, football and boxing training are different beasts. It’s easy to get hurt on the field or court, but it’s even easier in a fight sport like boxing, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing.

This is just the beginning, especially with NFL players jumping from field to ring. Now that there’s a lane and obvious audience for this, I think we’ll see at least one or two retired NFLers announce their boxing debut during the next handful of offseasons. If someone funds it, they will come. You can bet on that.

Corey Perry is the curse we’d all hoped he’d be

Colorado Avalanche And Tampa Bay Lightning Exchange Handshakes Following Their Six-Game Series

I defy you to find a hockey fan that doesn’t hate Perry with every fiber of their being. Oh sure, if you can find a Ducks fan in the wild (and I doubt you can), they’ll tell you he’s an Orange County hero, a phrase that tells you everything you need to know about a person and place. Maybe you can find a Stars or Canadiens or Lightning fan that barely stomached his presence for a season and will try to convince you while really trying to convince themselves, “Oh, I get it now. Watching him every game you really see the effe….”

Advertisement

And it’s a load of horseshit. They hate themselves for even trying to dry hump the word out of their mouth. You can see their entire being deflate behind their eyes for even trying to take a pro-Perry position, even the theory of one, for just a matter of seconds. It’s why that sentence above dies of exhaustion and dehydration way before completion. It’s built on nothing.

Perry has been a shitbag for his entire career. His vacant face trying to hide the thousands of punches to the back of someone’s head, or the spears to the gut during scrums, or the hits from behind, or whatever other misdeed he could think of as long as it was behind an official’s back and his opponents weren’t looking. What was even more infuriating about Perry is he never answered for any of it, despite being 6-3 and 206 pounds. Any number of his teammates had to clean up his mess despite being smaller, because Perry could hide behind his stature of top line scorer.

Advertisement

And Perry was a dominant scorer, once upon a time. Even an MVP. Even now, he put up very good numbers for a bottom six winger who can fill in higher up the lineup when you need him to. On paper, Perry is a good player to have.

But as the Ducks learned, counting on Perry when it mattered was the best way to hand up with nothing but a handful of yourself. As the Ducks tripped and fell into a manhole every Game 7 at home, you couldn’t find Perry or his fellow disappearing act/rat-eating connoisseur Ryan Getzlaf with a drone and CIA backing. Whether it was the Kings or Hawks or Wings or Predators, all of whom gleefully skipped in and out of The Pond with a laughably easy deciding game win, all of them could find players willing to step up to the moment while Perry watched it go by him, flailing his stick at someone’s jaw just to assure everyone he was still in fact breathing.

Advertisement

Except now, he’s a curse. He’s always been, but it’s completely out in the open and breathtaking. Perry has lost three straight Cup Finals, with three different teams, as he more nakedly ring-chases than Karl Malone. He’s put in all that time, all that work, and three seasons in a row he’s had to stand there and watch someone else celebrate. Even more infuriating is that Perry doesn’t need to ring-chase, as apparently he has one. There is some record of the Ducks winning in 2007, except you can’t find anyone who remembers or witnessed it. Apparently it happened.

Every so often, you get one up on the villain even though we don’t play. You get to watch Perry lose a third Final in a row, know that he’ll carry the label that Marian Hossa had to and then quickly shed because Hossa was an actual winner, and make it his own. Teams will actually be cautious of signing Perry now, because that’s how hockey works. He’s the reverse Pat Maroon, and the only player that could stop Maroon’s streak was Perry. It may be what he’s best known for when he retires, which it should be.

Advertisement

Hockey fans around the world are going to chop up these images of yet another Perry failure and snort it. There is joy out there, people. Just have to be patient.