Schmuck stops: On exporting NFL preseason games, Le'Veon Bell's female problem and why the Orioles aren't tanking

John Graham, president of On Ice Management, speaks to the media, Wednesday, June 5, 2019, at a news conference in Winnipeg, Manitoba, to announce that the Oakland Raiders and the Green Bay Packers will play a preseason NFL game Aug. 22 at the home of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

News Item: The NFL will stage the Week 3 preseason game between the Oakland Raiders and Green Bay Packers in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on Aug. 22. It will be the first NFL game of any kind to be played in Canada since 2013. Tickets go on sale Saturday and will be priced from $75 to $340 Canadian or about $55 to $250 U.S.

My take: Great news, but I wish the game was going to be played in Quebec, so we could hear Canadians complain about the price of NFL preseason tickets in French.


News item: Orioles catcher Pedro Severino hit three home runs in Tuesday night’s victory over the Texas Rangers. It was the first time an Orioles catcher has ever had a home run hat trick.

My take: Just to put this in a totally irrelevant perspective, the most famous catcher in Orioles history — Rick Dempsey — hit three home runs in the first 150 games of his Orioles catching career.


News item: The Philadelphia Eagles just signed quarterback Carson Wentz to a four-year contract extension that will keep him under center at Lincoln Financial Field through the 2024 season.

My take: Guess the Eagles are just hoping Nick Foles gets released by the Jacksonville Jaguars in time to lead them deep into the playoffs for the third straight year.

Bonus take: I know, I know. Foles signed a four-year, $88 million contract with the Jags, but does anyone really believe he can beat out Gardner Minshew II for the starting job?

News item: The New York Giants and the media couldn’t contain their excitement when newly drafted Duke quarterback Daniel Jones broke away for a long touchdown run during a noncontact organized team activity this week.

My take: Perhaps this would be a good time to remind everyone of former Ravens coach Brian Billick’s favorite line whenever somebody got too excited about a rookie player in camp — “Never fall in love with a guy in shorts.”

News item: Hall of Fame pitcher and Minnesota Twins broadcaster Bert Blyleven was so flabbergasted by a freak play at Tropicana Field that he blurted out, “Blow up this place!”

My take: Of course, it was just a figure of speech, but it contained an ironic twist, since the Twins’ previous stadium — the inflatable-roofed Metrodome — actually had to be blown up and was almost as quirky as “The Trop.”

News item: Police in Hollywood, Fla., reported Thursday that two “girlfriends” of superstar NFL running back Le’Veon Bell have disappeared with several pieces of his jewelry valued at $520,000.


My take: This might be the first time there has ever been a “Florida Man” story about a “First World” problem.

News item: The courtside fan who shoved Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry during Game 3 of the NBA Finals in Oakland, Calif., was a minority owner of the Golden State Warriors. That means he was not only ejected from the arena but was also fined $500,000 by the NBA and the Warriors, as well as banned from attending games and team activities for a year.

My take: Love to hear what Raptors superfan Drake has to say about this. He’s probably wondering why everybody made such a big deal out of it since certain courtside fans can do anything they want in Toronto.

News item: The Orioles remain on pace to lose almost as many games as last year, which is probably going to fuel suspicion they are tanking to get back to the top of next year’s draft.

My take: Preposterous. How could a team possibly be tanking when it’s paying its part-time first baseman $23 million per year?

News item: Warriors star Kevin Durant has been ruled out of Game 4 of the NBA finals.


My take: Not a big surprise, since he hasn’t played since May 8, but with Klay Thompson back and Stephen Curry on fire, the Warriors will even the series at home tonight. Book it.