Brian Ortega’s Obsession With The Guillotine Choke Should Lead To His Demise Vs Frankie Edgar

Throughout his UFC career, Brian Ortega has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into striking range. If Ortega is successful, he will throw the left jab followed by an occasional straight right hand or lead left hook. Once Ortega throws the initial combination, he would retract his arms back towards his body and place his hands at about chest height. Brian intentionally puts his hands at about chest height because he wants to give the illusion that his head and body are wide open to be countered. If the opponent takes the bait, he will throw a counter strike from the edge of the pocket or take a step in an attempt to throw the counter. When the opponent decides to take a step in, Ortega will reach out to get a body lock or duck under to shoot for a takedown. If he is successful, Brian will slowly start moving his arms up the back of his opponent until he reaches the neck to lock in a guillotine choke. For instance, in the first round of the Cub Swanson fight, Cub stepped in to throw a counter left hook to the body, but in the process, he got caught in a body lock. Once this happened, Brian slowly started to move his arms up the back of his opponent until he reaches the neck to lock in a guillotine choke.

Cub Swanson vs Brian Ortega fight on UFC Fight Night 123

However, Frankie Edgar has most likely been made aware of Brian Ortega’s tendencies by his coach Mark Henry. As a result, Edgar will look to engage with Ortega in short spurts where he can land his strikes and immediately get out of range. For instance, he will feint or throw the left jab followed by the straight or overhand right. After Edgar finishes his striking combination, he should take a couple of steps back and circle out to the left away from the power hand of Brian. The strategy should force Ortega to reset by having to chase Edgar around the octagon constantly.

Kevin Durant Will Pursue A Reunion With The Oklahoma City Thunder Before Retirement 

Over the past year and a half, Kevin Durant has been on a mission to prove that he made the right decision in leaving the Oklahoma City Thunder to join the Golden State Warriors. For instance, Durant has repeatedly engaged in conversations with NBA fans that ask him for a reasonable explanation as to why he left the Thunder. According to SI.com, Kevin responded to a Twitter user who stated that he respected Durant but needed “one legitimate reason for” him “leaving okc other than getting a championship.” Kevin answered the question by saying that “he didn’t like the organization or playing for Billy Donovan. His roster wasn’t that good, it was just him and russ”. Although Kevin Durant gave a legitimate reason for leaving the Thunder, he continues to talk about the topic instead of letting it go.

Therefore, one can argue that Kevin Durant is like a person who is in a relationship, but they can’t stop thinking and talking about their previous partner. A person in this situation will continuously compare the characteristics of their current partner to their last partner and debate which one is better. For example, Durant interviewed with Michael Lee from the Vertical, and he was asked: “how do you feel it has played out for your game, in terms of maybe shots coming easier?”. Kevin responded to the question by saying “obviously, when you’ve got a better, when you’ve got a deeper team, you’ve got guys that can handle the ball, you’ve got shooters, you’ve got guys that can finish at the rim, it just opens it up for everybody”. Even though,  Kevin Durant gave an honest answer; it came off as a person acknowledging that their current partner has all the characteristics that their former partner was lacking.

Eventually, the constant acknowledgment of the Oklahoma City Thunder will create some friction between  Kevin Durant and the Warriors; because they know he isn’t fully committed to the relationship. As a result, there will be a time where the Warriors are going to pull him aside to tell him to stop mentioning his former team. The request should irritate Kevin Durant, and he will begin to design an exit strategy. Due to this, I believe he will pursue a reunion with the Thunder before retiring in an attempt to find happiness and get back in the good graces of fans.

The Washington Redskins Should Part Ways With Kirk Cousins After 2017

Throughout the 2015 season, the Washington Redskins decided to implement an offensive system that was centered around the running game and the play-action passing game. For instance, during the first two downs of a series, Kirk Cousins would hand the ball off to Alfred Morris or Matt Jones in an attempt to force the opposing team to stack the box and set up a manageable third down. If the strategy was successful, the Redskins called a play action pass where Kirk would fake the handoff and go in the opposite direction to throw the ball to the flat or the crossing route fifteen yards down field. However, on occasion, Kirk would fake the handoff to freeze the defense momentarily that allowed the receivers to get some separation as they try to complete a slant, in or out route. As a result of this, the Redskins offense was able to stay on the field for a longer period, which means that the opposing team had less time to feast on their defense. In fact, according to teamrankings.com, the Redskins offense was on the field for an average of “31:29” thus the defense was only on the field for 28:31.

However, it was an entirely different story last season because the team made wholesale changes to the offensive system. This is because the organization wanted to see if he could lead the team to victory while being the focal point of the offense before giving him a big contract. As a result, the Redskins went from a run heavy offense to more of a passing offense to evaluate his decision making; and ability to make all the throws without having the running game to preoccupy the defense. For instance, the Redskins dialed back on the play action bootlegs where he would fake the handoff to the running backs and roll out in the opposite direction to hit the wide open receiver. In place of the conservative offense, they decided to call the traditional three to five step drop passing plays to gauge whether Cousins can make the right decision with the football when the defense is ready for a pass. For instance, Kirk would take a 3 to 5 step drop from under center and proceed to throw the ball to a receiver on a curl, crossing and corner routes as well as screens. While it is reasonable to expect a team to give their potential investment many opportunities to prove that he deserves a long term commitment at a certain point, it will affect the performance of the rest of the team. Since the team had Kirk Cousins throw the ball a lot, the offense spent less time on the field because of incompletions, interceptions, sacks or big plays that result in short drives. As a result, the defense went back on the field without the proper amount of rest which led the defense to be more susceptible to giving up yards and points. Since they would be unable regain some energy between possessions to be able to stop the opposing offense. In fact, according to teamrankings.com, the Redskins offense was on the field for an average of “29:32” thus the defense was on the field for 31:28.

In conclusion, a long term commitment to Kirk Cousins will elevate his individual statistics but will hurt overall team success.

Ricky Rubio: An Underutilized Player With All-Star/MVP Potential 

Throughout his professional basketball career, Ricky Rubio has been described as a player who possesses exceptional court vision and passing ability. In fact, according to DraftExpress Rubio has an “ability to deliver crisp, perfectly timed passes directly into the hands of a cutting teammate for an easy basket is uncanny… into the net for them”. Due to this, a team who owns his services should develop an offensive system where he would be the primary ball handler; and is allowed to analyze the defense to determine what is the right pass. For instance, the traditional pick and roll offense would be an ideal system for him because he can bring the ball up to the three-point line and ask for a screen. Once the pick was set Rubio can pay attention to his defender to determine the next course of action, for instance, if the defender went under the screen, Rubio can go over it and take the wide open shot. On the other hand, if the defender went over the screen, Rubio can go over it as well and drive towards the basket where he can score or pass the ball to the player next to him or to the perimeter depending on whether he was double teamed or not.

However, Ricky Rubio has yet to reach his full potential as an NBA player because the Minnesota Timberwolves run an offense system that does not cater to his strengths. The Timberwolves run a system where Rubio brings the ball up to the three-point line and passes it into the mid to low block or to the player next to him. Once this happens, he stands behind the three-point line as a spot up shooter which is his biggest weakness as he has a career three-point shooting percentage of 31.5 percent. As a result, the team effectively diminished his ability to pass the ball which is one of the main ways Rubio can profoundly impact a game.

Due to this, he should hope that a traditional pick and roll team like Dallas or New Orleans decides to trade for him because that is the only way he will reach his potential. If he gets traded to one of these teams, he should have a similar impact to that of James Harden with the Houston Rockets this season (potential All-Star and/or MVP candidate).