LA Dodgers new acquisitions, XFL Recap, UFC 247 Recap, Daytona 500 Preview & NBA All-Star Weekend

It was another busy week in sports. A major trade led to a World Series favorite strengthen their chances, the reborn XFL played its first week, and Jon Jones showed he’s a walking MMA legend. Also, an underdog grabbed the pole for this Sunday’s Daytona 500 and the NBA All-Star Game is on Sunday. Check out what happened this week in sports!

Weekly Sports Update – February 8th Edition

L.A. Dodgers Acquire Price, Betts, From Red Sox

No matter the sport, great organizations don’t rest on their laurels. They don’t rest on their laurels after winning championships. They don’t rest on their laurels after disappointing seasons.

By the most important measure, not winning a World Series, the Dodgers had a disappointing 2019. So, what did Hollywood do? They decided to trade for two awesome players. From the Boston Red Sox, LAD acquired starting pitcher David Price and the great Mookie Betts Before getting into why Price and Betts make the Dodgers a second-choice chalk to win the World Series, let’s discuss the reason Dodgers’ brass are geniuses for making the deal.

Not only did Los Angeles acquire two of the top players in Major League Baseball, but they saved money. The Red Sox are paying for half of the $96 mil left on Price’s contract. That makes the Dodgers geniuses.

When he’s healthy, David Price is an ace starter. He’s especially important to the Dodgers because Hyun-Jin Ryu flew the coop and landed with the Blue Jays. With Price, the Dodgers continue with their 3-ace rotation. Price folds right into a rotation that includes Walker Buehler and Clayton Kershaw. Acquiring Price is an A+.

Acquiring Betts is also an A+. At 27, Mookie has a lot of playing years left. Betts hit .295 with 29 home runs and 80 RBIs last season. The Dodgers’ batting line-up now includes Justin Turner, Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger, A.J. Pollock, and Mookie Betts.

The trades have sent the Dodgers to +325 on MyBookie to win the World Series. That makes Los Angeles a solid second choice behind the New York Yankees. Are the odds justified? Probably not. Betts and Price are awesome. But Los Angeles’ bullpen requires work. Let’s see if LAD makes any more moves before spring training.

XFL Hopes to Not End Up Like the AFA

This past weekend, the 8-team XFL began their inaugural season. The main goal for the XFL? Not end up like the AFA. Last year, the American Football Alliance lasted from February 9 to April 17. The AFA went bankrupt after they failed to sign a contract with the NFL to become a developmental league.

The XFL’s prospects are much brighter than the AFA’s. For starters, Vince McMahon tried the XFL before. That football league failed because it centered around making the game different from the NFL. This time around, McMahon has created a fan-centric football league. How fan-centric?

The XFL has what they call the Football Advisory Network, or F.A.N. The core principles of the XFL are: affordability, tickets start at $20, access, game day experiences for fans, community engagement, and the Football Advisory Network.

Will the XFL work? Sure it will! McMahon knows why college football works. He’s not shooting for the stars here. He wants to create a league that appeals to fans. Sort of like a WWE on the gridiron. Let’s hope it works. There’s never a problem with more football, right? 

Jones Wins Tough Bout at UFC 247

The greatest MMA fighter of all-time, Jon “Bones” Jones, won again. This time with some controversy.

Jones faced undefeated Dominick Reyes. Per many, Reyes won the fights. That’s hard to say conclusively because Bones did take the fifth round. But fans were outraged, including UFC President Dana White’s son, who called his dad to complain about the controversial decision.

White told reporters that Reyes fought well enough for a rematch. But the rumor is that Jones will move up to heavyweight after such a tough battle at light heavy. No matter what Bones does, we can all agree that he’s lost a step.

Unless White matches Jones with a  cupcake, the MMA’s greatest will have a tough time in his next bout. Keep Jon Jones on your radar. No way he goes off the underdog in his next fight. So, we could all score on by backing his undervalued opponent. 

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Grabs Daytona 500 Pole

Roush Fenway made a smart move signing Ricky Stenhouse Jr. In his first test with his new team, Stenhouse Jr. passed with flying colors. Ricky grabbed the pole for this Sunday’s Daytona 500.

Although Stenhouse grabbed the pole, he offers +1800 odds to win the race. The race’s favorite is Joey Logano at +900. Logano won in 2015. He finished fourth last year. Joey’s the only driver that offers odds less than 4-digits on MyBookie.

Pay attention this week as the starting grid gets fleshed out. Since 2015, the winners in order are Logano, Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch, Austin Dillon, and Hamlin again last year. Worst comes to worse, back the driver among that group with the highest odds. 

Get Ready for NBA All-Star Weekend

This week, the NBA plays games on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. NBA All-Star festivities start on Friday. They culminate on Sunday with the NBA All-Star Game.

Just like last season, the NBA decided to forego the traditional East versus West battle. Instead, Giannis and LeBron got to draft players for Sunday’s matchup. Keep that in mind when you handicap this year’s game.

Check out the starting lineups. For Team LeBron James: LeBron, Anthony Davis, Kawhi Leonard, Luka Doncic and James Harden will start. For Team Giannis, these 5 players will start: Giannis, Joel Embiid, Pascal Siakam, Kemba Walker, and Trae Young.

But don’t just handicap and wager on the NBA All-Star Game. The NBA Slam Dunk Contest and Three-Point Shooting Contest are Saturday highlights. Keep a look out for blogs about more NBA All-Star festivities.

Have a great week!