That's Lebron James. Smiling.
We haven't seen much of that face this season. With drama apparently leaking from inside the Cavaliers locker room for much of the first part of 2018, the city of Cleveland may have something to cheer for after a beatdown last night over conference rival Boston.
Just days after a series of transactions which made the Cavs a younger team on the court -- as well as ridding themselves of Isaiah Thomas, who barely could play defense better than I could -- the old veteran LeBron James scored 24 points to lead seven players in double figures in a 121-99 victory that wasn’t close after the first half.
Are the Cavaliers back? Well, a lot still has to unfold in the coming months, but with Kevin Love set to return in April, if this current crop of players can bring back this team from the murky waters they'd seemingly been immersed within, the future appears much brighter indeed.
Major League Baseball spring training camps open this week in both Florida and Arizona, and one team welcomes a new arm. Yu Darvish signed a six-year deal over the weekend with the Chicago Cubs. Darvish came to the Dodgers last summer from the Texas Rangers and helped to propel Los Angeles to a National League title.
Personally, I'll be very happy to not see that man in a Dodgers uniform next season. No, I don't "blame" him for the epic failure in Game 7 of the World Series, in which Darvish was as effective as the starting pitcher as a leaky faucet, but it sure didn't help.
The Dodgers most immediate task now is to find a new starting pitcher to a rotation that desperately needs a second, and maybe third big arm.
Indy (Finally) gets their man
ESPN -- Frank Reich has been hired to be the Indianapolis Colts' next head coach. The now-former offensive coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles replaces Chuck Pagano after a search that took a few twists and turns.
Indianapolis announced that Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels had agreed to take the job on Feb. 6 and scheduled an introductory news conference for the next day. McDaniels called Colts general manager Chris Ballard later that evening and reneged on the agreement, saying he decided to stay with New England. Ballard took the blame for the team's announcing the agreement with McDaniels before he signed the contract.
Reich's hiring ends a six-week coaching search in which the Colts went from being the first of six teams to fire their head coach to being the last of the six to fill the opening.
So, it was an interesting weekend inside the fortress.
My home was invaded this past weekend. In the middle of the night, I received an unwelcome guest inside my home who (for whatever reason) decided he wanted to turn on the television at just a shade after 5am on Sunday morning.
After a brief confrontation, the man did leave my home to parts unknown. It is unlikely he'll be captured or apprehended, but I'm less concerned about that as I am about the accompanying mind games the incident has played (and will continue to play) within my already troubled psyche.
I suppose there is no such thing really to the notion of being "too protective" of your home. One should always feel safe within the confines of their personal space. And while some go out of their way to better arm themselves against menacing outside forces, there are simply too many of them to guarantee your unquantifiable security.
When a tall, menacing figure was lurking around my living room in the shadowy darkness of Sunday morning, I felt a bit empowered knowing I'd been able to maintain the level of surprise in the confrontation which followed, but in the aftermath of his departure, I was looking at the broken door and faced with the concept that my fortress wasn't quite so impenetrable after all.
My thanks to the Farmington Police Department and the officers who responded to my home quickly. I appreciate the attention to detail and the calm demeanor with which they handled the situation. I apologized frequently for being a little shaken by the entire matter.
It will take some time before I am able to emotionally return to a peace of mind where my fortress will feel like four highly guarded, safely protected walls. It will take some effort, and will require some newfound attention to detail that I perhaps had overlooked or taken for granted in the past.
But I will get that peace of mind back. I'll find that missing piece of safety netting and will take back that necessity which is my mental clarity.
And so it goes.