Everyone loves to carry on about the spirit of cricket, but it seems like it's not just planes that disappear around Bermuda. Nah jokes, I actually don't think this video of two cricketers from opposing cricket teams in Bermuda is too bad - we've all seen something similar. Seeing the headlines and then watching the start of this video had me scared that we were going to see a team on team brawl like .... like what happens in baseball on the regular.
Instead and thankfully, it was just two grown men having a wee disagreement which usually results in the batsman swinging his bat. No one else takes this scuffle to the next level, which is how all disagreements between two men should go down. The NRL should definitely take note.
A quick trip to Bermuda and I don't know whether to skip back to Aotearoa or head to New Orleans because that's where Corey Webster is going to reside for the near future. Webster has been training with the New Orleans Pelicans, home of one of my top-3 favourite NBA players in Anthony Davis and appears to have done enough to warrant a longer stay.
Webster tweeted that he had signed a contract with the Pelicans, his first NBA contract but this doesn't mean he will be lacing up to join the Pelicans on their NBA roster. It is widely believed that Webster signed a non-guaranteed deal that will see him stay with the Pelicans during the Training Camp period as well as being a multi-year deal so if Webster doesn't quite make the cut, then he will still be in the mix. The only thing is that it was reported that Webster had nailed this contract last week, so the signing of this contract has only now become official.
The next date on the timeline for Webster and us kiwis is October 26 when NBA rosters for the opening day will be need to be sussed. That gives Webster just over a month to drain plenty of 3's and show-out on defence in front of Pelicans officials showing that he can, at the very least be a solid team lad who does his job when called upon. That's the thing here as Webster definitely won't see the minutes that Steven Adams does with the Thunder. Even if everything goes exceptionally well for him with the Pelicans there are some solid NBA guards ahead of Webster in Eric Gordon, Jrue Holiday and Norris Cole.
The Pelicans will continue to roll through their training schedule which will be pretty funky for Webster as he'll get to go head to head with Davis, Ryan Anderson and those guards listed before they embark on preseason fixtures. This is what Webster will be eyeing up, this will be his opportunity to prove that he can hang against NBA-quality opponents which is always the biggest question for a non-NBA player hunting for an opportunity. The Pelicans will play seven games between the 3rd of October and the 23rd against the Pacers, Atlanta, Bulls, Kings, Rockets, Magic and Heat.
How awesome is this? While the NRL Finals are winding up to a climax and the Rugby World Cup is heating up, we'll have our own Jarryd Hayne-like story to follow and get overly excited about performances that the average American simply wouldn't give two shits about. It's a great time to hop aboard the Webster-wagon folks and support the kid.
Two other kids who need some support are Dylan Walker and Aaron Gray. The two young Rabbitohs backs were rushed to hospital yesterday after apparently overdosing on prescription pain-killers. Walker and Gray are now the poster boys of the over-reliance on prescription medication or pain-killers which is an issue that has been brewing in the NRL and has rather obviously done the rounds in the NFL as well.
How can we expect guys who get smashed for a living to behave like you or I when handed a tub of pills to deal with pain after a surgery or just after a game? I mean, I am sure that you all have experience the joy of receiving a pack of 'tremmies' (tramadol) and if you haven't then you sure as hell know someone who has. So if people like you and I can get addicted or overly giddy about the prospect of popping some pills, what about blokes who are rarely not in pain?
If you've got the time, then watch this documentary about Oxycontin, which clearly messes up lives of everyday folk let alone vulnerable athletes who want to be able to run out on the field each week and earn a pay check. Oxy was one of the pain-killers reported to have been used by Walker and Gray, yet Oxy is highly addictive and has numerous negative side-effects.
A few months ago I posted an article about the widespread use of marijuana in the NFL as players seek a non-pill way to ease the pain that comes with whacking into other huge men. Whether it's for concussion or that niggling knee issue, many NFL players turn to something that Mother Nature has gifted to us and has little to no negative side-effects.
May this serve as a warning - as long as marijuana is illegal and is frowned upon by close-minded individuals, we will continue to see professional athletes turn to pills and over-use these pills. Until then, don't be surprised to see more drama about the use and wrongful use of pain-killers come out from rugby and rugby league #LegalizeIt.