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Michael Vick - photo Keith Allison




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FREE AT LAST, FREE AT LAST - Once a Falcon now an Eagle the question is is Michael Vick on the road to recovery - BECKHAM ROCKS NR TOP 10 CHARTS - RAMBIS TO COACH TIMBERWOLVES - FIFA TOP 10


Monday August 17, 2009


To some it was pulsating news when Michael Vick was released from confinement after serving a 23-month federal sentence at Leavenworth, Kansas for bankrolling a dog-fighting operation on his property in Virginia. His detention came to an end July 20 when an electronic monitor was removed from his ankle at his home in Hampton, Virginia where he finished his sentence under house arrest.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said that the former Atlanta Falcon could return the league with some conditions. The commissioner stated that he would consider Vick for full reinstatement by Week 6 in October at the latest. He also noted that Vick can immediately take part in preseason practices, workouts, meetings and can play in the final two preseason games.

The 29-year-old quarterback who was once highest-paid player in the league could immediately take part in preseason practices, workouts and meetings and can play in the final two preseason games if he could find a team that would sign him. The Philadelphia Eagles were just that team as this past Thursday they signed Vick to a one-year deal one-year for $1.6 million with a team option for a second year at $5.2 million. That is a steep wage cut from the 10-year, $130 million contract he once had with the Falcons. His financial situation is bleak as he filed for bankruptcy protection and has assets of about $16 million and debts of more than $20 million.

Well that blew our best laid plans for mice, men and Michael Vick as we envisioned him becoming an Oakland Raider a team with the most notorious bad boy reputation of all-time of any sport plus they ware black with silver and have a skull and crossbones on their helmet. Where was Johnny Depp when this deal went down?

Before the Raiders fell from grace and their winning ways I asked then Raiders Executive Assistant Al LoCasale to what did they attribute their success. His reply was "We don't believe in paralysis by analysis." Analysis or not the Raiders apparently didn't give much thought about signing Vick.

The reality now is that Vick is an Eagle and many of their fans aren't too happy about it. The other muddle is that their current quarterback Donavan McNabb has had winning ways but not a Super Bowl title. McNabb also has a quarrel with the team regarding being benched for poor play last season. His contract was redone with more money but the writing on the wall indicates something is up in the city of Brotherly Love.

Vick can run as his career totals indicate that he has had more career 100-yard rushing games with eight than his six 250-yard passing games. His passing is good but not great as he registered a 53.8 percent for passing completions which is among the lowest for a starting NFL quarterback. He also has 71 career touchdown passes and 52 interceptions.

McNabb has been injured physically and his feelings are said to have been hurt when negative comments about him are made. There can be a case that they can co-exist in a two quarterback situation particularly since McNabb is often injured.

Vick can participate in regular-season games as early as October giving him time to oil the rust from his being out of the league for two seasons. More mystery is added that it was McNabb who pushed for Vick to be signed and former Indiana Colts coach Tony Dungy is said to have a hand in the signing.

To make light of a bad situation it will be interesting to see the crowd response from the Cleveland Browns Dog Pound fans who wear dog masks should Vick be a member of the Eagles or any other NFL team when they play in Cleveland. No longer a Falcon Vick continues to be a bird the question is how high can he fly? Stay tuned.


Whatever David Beckham has gone through as a result of some journalist writing negative comments from the Englishman's LA Galaxy teammate in order to sell a book the answer to 'Who Loves Ya Baby' can be evidenced by our readers. Our Beckham Abuse Continues story rocketed to the top of our NR top 10 charts within sight days of its release. Love him or not there are plenty of people who care about Beckham.


They say great players don't make great coaches. There is a long list the bear that out. Of the not so great players who became great coaches Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson and Miami Heat coach Pat Riley are two of the NBA's all-time great coaches. Now that Kurt Rambis has signed on to coach the Minnesota Timberwolves only time will tell is he can join the list. As a player Rambis is strikingly similar to Jackson. Both were key role players who weren't great jumpers, shooters and not so fast but the hustled their tails off. Rambis knows how to win having been a part of six NBA title winning teams four with the Lakers as a player in the 80's and two as an assistant coach to Jackson. The 51-year-old Rambis is known as a teacher who has good player development skills. During the strike shortened 50 game he was an interim Lakers head coach and registered a 24-13 record.


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FIFA TOP 10 - Top of the ranking unchanged

Only Gold Cup sparks movement - The USA (12th, unchanged) missed out on a place in the top ten following their resounding 5-0 defeat to Mexico in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final.

Almost the entire top 20 of latest edition of the FIFA World Ranking remains unchanged. Brazil , who returned to the top in July, are still the leaders ahead of Spain and the Netherlands . Behind them are Italy (5th, down 1), who have lost more points than Germany (4th, up 1) following the devaluation of previous matches and have therefore been overtaken by them.

The USA (12th, unchanged) missed out on a place in the top ten following their resounding 5-0 defeat to Mexico in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final. Their victors and newly crowned continental champions Mexico have only slightly improved their position (30th, up 3), as notwithstanding their triumph over the USA , their form has been patchy (only two other victories in normal time; their win over non-FIFA-member Guadeloupe did not count towards the ranking). Canada (66th, up 26) fared better after remaining undefeated in the group stage and thus greatly improving on their previous position. El Salvador (81st, up 9) are also on the up thanks to victory over high-ranked Costa Rica (38th, down 8), who like Honduras (46th, down 7) have lost ground.

The month’s other biggest movers include Namibia (103rd, up 12) and New Caledonia (138th, up 11). Montenegro (96th, up 2) meanwhile have achieved their best-ever position in the ranking. The biggest movers by points since the beginning of the year are Brazil (up 396 points), Gabon (up 277 points) and Northern Ireland (up 204 points), while the biggest movers by ranks are Nicaragua (139th, up 42), Somalia (168th, up 32) and Gabon (31st, up 31).

· Leader Brazil -- (1st, unchanged)

· Moves into top 10 -- none

· Moves out of top 10 -- none

· Matches played in total -- 34

· Most matches played -- USA (6), Mexico , Honduras , Canada (5 each)

· Biggest move by points -- Canada (up 138 points) · Biggest move by ranks Canada (up 26)

· Biggest drop by points -- Honduras (down 89 points)

· Biggest drop by ranks -- Grenada , Netherlands Antilles (each down 25 places)

· Newly ranked teams -- none

· Teams that are no longer ranked -- none

· Inactive teams, not ranked -- São Tomé e Principe

FIFA TOP 10 for August, 2009

Rank -- Team -- Points

1. Brazil - 1642

2. Netherlands - 1379

3. Spain - 1590

4. Germany - 1195

5. Italy - 1181

6. Russia - 1161

7. England - 1135

8. Argentina - 1080

9. France - 1059

10. Croatia 1031

The next FIFA World Ranking will be published on September 2, 2009


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