It’s another week of “Buy or Sell,” and this week we’ve got topics from each of the three major sports in the USA. Sorry, Hockey isn’t getting much love this summer after the St. Louis Blues won the Stanley Cup. We’ll bring that back when the season starts.
For now, we’ll focus on topics from the NFL, NBA and MLB, as Joel and Dan join me in this week’s edition. Each question deals with a player’s success helping his team on their way to a possible championship.
Joel: After receiving a 99 overall rating on Madden 20, WR DeAndre Hopkins won’t lead the NFL in any receiving category next season?
Dan: I’m selling this. This is an easy sell because of just two stats that may not even be considered. One stat is his catching percentage (70.6), which was a career high. With a healthy Deshaun Watson, we could see Hopkins continue to put up great numbers, just like greats before him. Rahim will get into the comparisons below.
Rahim: I don’t believe in the Madden ratings or the Madden Curse, so I’m going to sell this. I’m also selling this because Hopkins is one of the top receivers in the league and there is no way he doesn’t lead the league in at least one receiving category.
Let’s think of it this way, he is the No. 1 target on his team and has the best hands in the league. When was the last time you’ve seen him drop a ball that was catchable? When we look at top receivers, we think of guys like Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, Odell Beckham Jr., Davante Adams and Hopkins.
You could add guys like Amari Cooper and Juju Smith-Schuster as well, but they all have an offense that has more than one weapon available to them. I see Jones having the most catches 20+ yards. Hopkins could be there with him.
Brown will likely get most of the teams targets, like we expect Hopkins to do. There’s no saying what Beckham will do with that talented offense the the Browns have put together.
We expect Adams, Cooper and Juju to get most of the receptions on their teams as well. However, with a great running game and other role players, they will lose some receptions.
Hopkins is the only pass catcher Watson can really trust, unless Keke Coutee and Will Fuller can get things going again. I also think the running will help open up the field more for Hopkins, as the Houston Texans plan to use D’Onta Foreman more this season.
So I sell that Hopkins won’t lead the league in any category this season. I see his stat line to being about 130 catches for 1700 yards and 15 touchdowns, with a catching percentage of 73.
Rahim: It’s championship or bust for Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks next season?
Joel: I’m going to sell it being championship or bust for Giannis and the Bucks.
I feel like when you say it’s championship or bust, the bust part means they’ll blow up the team and start all over if they don’t win. I feel like the core of this Bucks team will stay together for a while. Giannis has just recently said he plans on sticking around instead of changing teams like several other stars.
He’s only going to keep getting better, and I believe he will win a championship in the next few years. Anytime a star player like Giannis doesn’t win a championship, it’s a disappointment, but I feel like saying it’s a bust would be going too far.
Dan: I sell that it’s championship or bust for Giannis and the Bucks. Giannis has stated that he is there for the long haul, and Khris Middleton just signed a very nice contract to return. These are two guys who aren’t old, and they’ll be together for a while.
The Eastern Conference is still the much weaker conference, and the only thing that stopped the Bucks from reaching last year’s finals was Kawhi Leonard. He’s now in the Western Conference.
Giannis can certainly lead this team to a championship. His road isn’t going to be easy with teams like the Boston Celtics and the Philadelphia 76ers to worry about. Then there’s the Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and several more in the Western Conference. Regardless, I believe Giannis has time to win a championship, even if it’s not this year.
Dan: When Luis Severino returns from IL, the Yankees have a better shot at making the World Series if they keep him in the bullpen for 2019?
Joel: I buy the Yankees having a better shot at making the World Series by leaving Severino in the bullpen when he comes back. At 60-33, the Yankees have the best record in the American League right now. If they’ve done this well without Severino, I don’t see why they need to change anything. You don’t fix something if it’s not broken.
Obviously, the Yankees are not broken. If the Yankees can continue their play at this current level, they’ve got a great chance at making it to the World Series. Luis Severino can help make their bullpen even deeper than it is right now, but I don’t think there’s any reason to stick him in the starting rotation.
Rahim: I am buying this too! I think Joel said it best when he said, “You don’t fix something if it’s not broken.” The New York Yankees have battled through a lot of different injury scenarios, which included guys like OF Aaron Judge and several of their starting rotation pitchers, like C.C. Sabathia and Luis Severino.
I honestly counted the Yankees out with the 15+ injured players they had on the injured list, but they managed to pull things together and keep it going with the slim division lead in the American League East. Having Severino coming from the bullpen will also continue to have a guy later in games to set up for Betances and Chapman, so I’m all for it!
There you have it! Now, what do you think?
- Will Hopkins lead the NFL in any receiving category next season?
- Are Giannis and the Bucks in Championship or Bust mode?
- Does having Luis Severino in the bullpen help the Yankees’ chances at making the World Series?
Let us know your thoughts in the comment!