In the aftermath of Super Bowl XLIV, there are two things I still can't shake loose. 1. My third degree sunburn complete with blisters on my forehead, and 2. The feeling that the Colts would have won easily if not for Hank Baskett.
Don't get me wrong, he's a great guy and has been a pleasure to interview this season. Plus, we all know he's married to superstar playmate Kendra. Be that as it may, I think Hank's inability to make a "basket catch" on an onside kick proved to be the major turning point in the Colts 31-17 loss. I know that games aren't won or lost on just one play, but this time I think it was.
Now let's play the "what if" game. What if Baskett came with the ball like he should have? The Colts take over in Saints territory and probably score a TD. After all, they did march the length of the field for a score when they actually got the ball later in the 3rd quarter. The score would have been 17-6 Colts, and the Saints most assuredly would have been a deflated bunch.
Dwight Freeney also would have had more time to get ready for the 2nd half instead of being unexpectedly rushed back into action. So many things would have been different including the final outcome in my opinion.
You have to give the Saints credit, though. Head Coach Sean Payton made a gutsy call like a poker player ready to make a big move in the WSOP. He went "all in" with his chips knowing that his bluff may get called leaving him busted and headed home in shame. I think he knew the Colts would score on the their first possession and this was his only chance to flip the script and get back in the game.
But instead of rolling over a winning hand, Baskett showed that his hand(s) are not the stuff of champions.
Hangin With Hagan: Baskett Case
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