ROCKIES: The dismal year for the Colorado Rockies is over, but a dark cloud still lingers over the minds of most. Several key scouts are already in Denver meeting with general manager Dan O’Dowd, and O’Dowd and the scouting staff stayed in Denver during this week’s Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tenn. Bill Geivett, the Rockies’ senior vice president of Major League operations, new manager Walt Weiss and the entire coaching staff were in Nashville and in contact with the scouts and O’Dowd. So what should be on The Rockies’ wish list for the upcoming season?
SHE SAID: It would be nice if Ryan Wheeler could turn into a power hitter. Everyone likes him, and he has caught the eyes of the scouts in the fall league. It would be very sweet if he turned out to be an all-around guy, personally and professionally. I personally wish that the Rockies will not trade Dexter Fowler. Even though there’s speculation around the league that he’s for sale, the Rockies have made it very clear that dealing Fowler will come at a very high price. Sure, it would be nice to get 25 year-old right-handed pitcher Mike Leake, but it would take a more impactful player (like a Gonzalez), to make the package worth dealing.
HE SAID: Victories. They have to develop a culture of winning and stop blaming the altitude and the dearth of pitching talent. They need to adopt a winning attitude before anything else.
BRONCOS: The Denver Broncos reached out for a lifeline this past spring, and they found one in Peyton Manning. With his combination of football prowess, mental finesse and a stellar arm, most Broncos’ fans would say that there’s not much else to wish for. Oh right – maybe a top seed in the playoffs. We can probably count that one as “checked off” on the list. So, what’s left for John Elway to wish for?
SHE SAID: I’m backing my wishes with some strong prayers that include no more fumbles (ever!) by Demaryius Thomas, better 1st halves in every game, and stronger defensive awareness, particularly in the 2nd quarter. The cherry on top? A Super Bowl appearance. I remember back in September that the Broncos were sharing Super Bowl favoritism with the Packers and the Patriots. Now, that they have several weeks of pigskin under their belt, Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos are now favorites on the Super Bowl odds. The Broncos’ Super Bowl odds were trimmed to 9/2 two weeks ago, and they join the Houston Texans and the New England Patriots as the favorites. Just sayin’… and prayin’.
HE SAID: What’s left to wish for? Manning to stay healthy! John Elway needs his most important asset to stay full-strength through another long and arduous NFL season if they want to have Super Bowl aspirations beyond just this year.
NUGGETS: When traveling to The Pepsi Center for Nuggets’ games, it seems necessary to bring a defibrillator – not for an errant fan who might be in distress, but rather for personal use. Whether feeling the need to shock oneself awake from a less than lustrous opening to a matchup or having a coronary watching the boys in blue let an opponent back in the game in the 4th quarter after they’ve had the lead by 15-22 points. What do the Nuggets need to wish for to ease the blood pressure?
SHE SAID: Ty Lawson needs to be a better leader. He had that fire, that verve, that swagger a year or so ago. It seems to have been misplaced thus far although I realize the season is young. But, they didn’t call him “The Blur” for nothing, and we’re all wishing it will return. Soon. As for Kenneth Faried, well, he’s just fun to watch, and I wish that his contagious energy for the game would infiltrate to more of his teammates. I also wish that they didn’t have 17 of their first 23 NBA games on the road. But, the good news is there will be plenty to cheer about in January with 12 of their 15 games played at home. And finally, head coach George Karl should have only good health and more successes ahead in his professional career and personal life. That’s a big one on the wish list.
HE SAID: Earlier start times. Seriously! I know they play in the Western Conference but it’s not like we’re in Hawaii. These old bones can’t handle all these 8:30 PM tip-offs. Do us old folks and the kids who adore this up-and-coming roster a favor and move up the game times so everyone can enjoy them.
RAPIDS: There was a lot that went wrong down the stretch this season for the Colorado Rapids. However, there have been some interesting rumblings thus far in the off-season. What should be on the Rapids’ wish list?
SHE SAID: Oscar Pareja needs to figure some things out. Does Mastroeni have anything left in the tank? The team should wish for this longtime leader to return in good health and playing shape. Also, in this transition year for the Rapids under first-year coach Pareja, perhaps there should be wishes for a more well-constructed roster and a better system for playing more competitively. One wish that was met (in a rather unanticipated fashion) was that Rapids attendance was up in Commerce City, with an average of nearly 16,000 fans per game. These fans want results. That’s their wish.
HE SAID: Bring on Beckham! The former-Galaxy and forever-worldwide heartthrob hasn’t tipped his hand about his next destination, but speculation is that he could end up Down Under in Australia’s A-League. But I say give him a weekend in Aspen to mull over staying in MLS. Something tells me he’d be convinced Colorado is the place for him (and more importantly, Victoria – hubba hubba).
SHE ALWAYS GETS THE LAST WORD: I’ll wrap up this wish list with a final wish for all: Save the date to join us in January as Kroenke Sports Charities will host the annual Mile High Dreams Gala on Monday, January 21, 2013. This unique event gives fans the opportunity to interact with players, coaches, alumni, dancers and mascots from the Colorado Mammoth, Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche and Colorado Rapids. The evening includes live music, dancing, gaming tables, wine tasting, as well as tastings from some of the best restaurants in Denver.
Thanks for always keeping the dial on Mile High Sports Radio AM 1510 | FM 93.7. May all your wishes come true this holiday season!