The Monday Morning Script: Where ESPN's BottomLine Threw Shade On Carmelo Anthony


You are going to be so inundated with the 2013 NFL Draft this week by every media outlet, publication and blog (maybe even us, I'm sorry) that at some point you might just want to yell HURRY UP AND BRING ON THIS FRIGGIN DRAFT SO I DON'T HAVE TO HEAR ABOUT IT ANYMORE JEEEEEZ or something to that effect.

The draft will come on Thursday evening, and then you will probably watch the entire thing and then become infuriated that you only got to watch the first round and that the second and third rounds don't start until Friday.

Then Friday comes and you tune in to the draft, hoping that your team makes some miraculous personnel move or your favorite college team has some of its players' names called, and it won't happen. Then the draft will end, and you'll realize that you still have to watch another four friggin' rounds on Saturday.

Then you'll sit there on Saturday, turning back and forth from the NBA playoffs and the draft just mindlessly wasting your time for no friggin' reason. You'll be angry when your team drafts a punter in the 5th round from Sugartit State and realize that you spent 12 hours of your life watching an overhyped human resources talent acquisition meeting.

Therefore, here are the sights and sounds that occurred this past weekend in sports that you need to be up on, so when that big personnel meeting happens you might remember that, "Oh, there are other things happening than this terrible HR meeting."

Previously: The Monday Morning Script - Where Things Other Than ‘The Masters’ Happened


You’ve heard it for years: Carmelo Anthony is the black hole on a team’s offense. There are some of us who think this angle has been used and abused for quite a while, even if there is truth to how the ball "sticks" at times when the New York Knicks (or his former Denver Nuggets) become stagnant. It’s why analysts, bloggers and reporters have knocked him for so long, despite him being the person that you want with the ball in a close game.

Then, on Saturday, he had a hot start and drastic cold spell in the first half of Game 1 versus the Boston Celtics.

You’d think that in the ideally objective BottomLine you’d catch a few scores, a handful of stats and the headline of the game.

Never mind that while Anthony had his share of attempts, it wasn’t as if the rest of the Knicks were moving the ball very well or draining their shots, either. Never mind that three of the Knicks starters combined for five attempts (Chris Copeland, 0-3; Tyson Chandler, zero attempts; Iman Shumpert, 1-2). Never mind that Jeff Green, who has become the Celtics’ top gun at times, had a whopping TWO assists while playing five more minutes than Anthony. Never mind that neither team was dishin’ and swishin’ with a lot of success (the Celtics had 18 assists vs. 13 for the Knicks). And never mind that J.R. Smith is J.R. Smith; not one assist, but shot 7-19 from the field.

There’s no question that those crawls further the clichés that we’ve heard about Melo, but it also seems too easy, too simplified and too convenient. Why? Honestly, have you EVER seen another player in the NBA get this treatment on the BottomLine? Probably not.

This isn’t homerism or throwing shade towards ESPN by any means, but if they’re going to single out Melo for the sake of giving First Take the regurgitated talking point, they should at least provide the same for anyone else in the league. - J. Clinkscales

(To be fair, the next crawl hoped to prove some sort of causation. “If he passes, the team wins!” As if it’s always that simple.)


Most of us give up biting others by second grade. And to be fair, most of us give up soccer by then too. That being said, Liverpool’s Luis Suarez’s biting of Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic might go down as the most childish act I have ever witnessed during a sporting event.

We’ve discussed Suarez before, and the fact remains that he is undoubtedly one of the most talented strikers in the world. This year, the Uruguayan has produced his best season in England to date. Suarez leads the Reds with 23 goals in 33 Premiership games. He’s chipped in 5 assists while routinely embarrassing defenders in one v. one situations.

The only thing that has matched his spectacular play has been his spectacular lapses of character. There’s this. And this. Then of course, there’s his diving. And hey, did you know he wasn’t a first-time biter?

Suarez’s chomp on Ivanovic was astounding. Watch the clip, and you’ll see that the biter made a hilariously poor attempt at subtlety. Ivanovic, a much larger man, has Suarez tightly marked when the Liverpool man decides his best route for escape is to go all Hannibal Lecter on the Chelsea center back.

A couple of options Suarez passed over. One, run. He’s much quicker than his defender who would likely commit a foul in a dangerous area should he impede Suarez in any way. Two, go down. It’s soccer. Players dive all the time. Even if the referee bade play go on, he would pay more attention to the ensuing Ivanovic-Suraez tussles the rest of the match. Three, stomp on Ivanovic’s foot. It doesn’t have to be a hard stomp, but it’s much easier to be subtle with a step than a bite. A well-placed foot can send a defender writhing in pain, while the offender can shrug his shoulders innocently.

Alas, Suarez chose to bite Ivanovic despite the fact that he will surely receive a season-ending suspension, Liverpool may sever ties with him completely and his victim, Ivanovic, hadn’t been sweating.

The worst part of it all is that the referee somehow missed it. Suarez played on undisciplined and, here’s the kicker, scored the dramatic tying goal in a 2-2 draw.

He’s a love/hate player of the worst kind. We love to watch him play and we not only hate that we enjoy it, but we also hate that he so often robs us of that enjoyment. Luis Suarez, the talented scumbag. - Dillon Friday

canelo vs trout

Saturday’s super welterweight unification bout was a close fight that ended with an unsurprising set of skewed scores. Wacky scoring seems to be the norm in Texas. For any reasonable observer scoring the fight, the rounds turned on whether you preferred a small handful of hard-landing punches or greater control of the entirety of the round with volume punching. The Texas judge who had the fight 118-109 seems to have scored the bout based on the Canelo-must-win system, instead of the traditional 10-point must system. But I digress.

Canelo showed us new wrinkles to his game, effectively bobbing and weaving out of the way of much of Trout’s aggression. In the ninth round, Canelo’s showboating head movement even momentarily had the fans asking who was supposed to be the boxer and who was supposed to be puncher in the fight.

Unfortunately, Canelo’s confidence in his punching power seemed to lead him to long stretches of inactivity. At best, Canelo was tired and had to conserve his energy for his short outburst of explosive punching that likely won him the round on many people’s score cards — although, not mine. At worst, Canelo purposefully adopted his low-output approach, which is unappealing, and isn’t the way to make a case that he holds the key to beating Floyd Mayweather.

“No Doubt” Trout has grit. He got knocked down in highlight-reel fashion and came back stronger. When Canelo’s right hand buckled Trout’s knees and brought him to the canvass for the first time in his career, many must have thought the KO was imminent. But Trout wouldn’t say die. Not only did he go on to control the remainder of the round, he seemed to have new life in the rounds thereafter. It’s just too bad that Trout lacked the power to offer Canelo any real scares.

Where do they go from here? Canelo wants Floyd Mayweather but may have to settle for hard-hitting middleweight champion, Gennedy Golovkin, who has stated he’s willing to come down to fight the Mexican star. Trout’s next steps are more difficult to divine. There are several rising 154-pounders who could benefit from adding Trout’s name to their ledger. Vanes Martirosyan or the winner of Alfredo Angulo v. Erislandy Lara (coming up on the June 8th) may hope to test themselves on the former world champion. All have a higher KO percentage than Trout. Whatever is next for Canelo and Trout, I look forward to their next date in the squared circle. - Paul Navarro

Hey Darrelle Revis, I know you're getting healthy and all, and I know you're now a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and all, but we still ain't forgot about that one time where you grabbed your hammy after Randall Gene Moss ran a 9-route right by you for a touchdown. You and your soul recovered from that yet or nah? Because you know, Matt Ryan, Drew Brees and Cam Newton are all going to be slangin' the pill on you next season so, get your hamstring ready. - ETSF

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