Ray Ratto

Ratto: Ranking the 49ers, Raiders, Warriors


Ratto: Ranking the 49ers, Raiders, Warriors


Todays miscellaneous crap comes to you from those notorious Bolshevik screedmongers, the Wall Street Journal and Forbes Magazine, who dabble in sports to make us think theyre on to something that they actually are only occasionally.

First, WSJ, and a piece from Jared Diamond who discovered a statistics company called Thuuz (which like many modern companies was named by slamming your elbow onto the keyboard and calling the result the letterhead for your business). It seems the Thuuzians (they sound nicer as Star Trek villains, dont you think?) have a metric for rating exciting NFL games, and therefore exciting NFL teams.

Their thesis: The more exciting your team, the less likely their chances of reaching the Super Bowl. More on the theory here.

But for those of you too busy on that cancer cure to click and read, well just tell you that the Raiders finished 19th and the 49ers 23rd. Seems to us we should have gotten more playoff bang for these dreary bucks.

I mean, if boring is what youre after (Steelers 29th, Patriots 28th, Bills 24th) for long-term staying power, how is it that the 49ers didnt make a much bigger splash?

Oh, sorry. Forgot, Mike Singletarys fault.

But the 49ers just hired the exciting and dynamic and charismatic Jim Harbaugh to jazz up the team and make it more excit ... oh, damn. Theyve screwed up again.

The Raiders at 19 are a different kettle of corn, of course, because they create their excitement when Al Davis does his one-man shows.

Seven teams in the upper half of the excite-o-meter made the playoffs, five below it. The three teams adjudged more boring than the Steelers were Arizona, Seattle and Carolina. We suspect this little tool isnt actually all that helpful, then.

Still, Paraag Marathe, the math guy, ought to get on this. Harbaugh may want to install the Wing-T this year -- just in case.

The other news comes from Forbes, which just valued the 30 NBA teams and declared the Warriors the 12th most valuable property, just ahead of the Pistons and right behind the Magic. For the full list, click this link.

That said, the Warriors were valued at 363 million, or 87 million less than Joe Lacob and Showbiz Petey Guber paid for it. Now even if Forbes valuations are off a decimal point here or there, thats still a heap of overpaying, and the result of overpaying is too much worry about the bottom line on the other end.

That doesnt sound like a lot of fun over at Lacob Heights. Then again, neither did the games against the Spurs and Hornets, and hell be coming back for more anyway. This may just be a labor of love for Lacob after all.

Either that, or hes nuts. Or he wants to give his son Kyle fulltime employment running the basketball end in a few years. Or he loves basketball. Or hes all those things, and nuts too.

This is the third time the Warriors sold for much more than their blue book value (Chris Cohan before that, and Jim Fitzgerald and Dan Finnane before that), and every time the old owners got their money out and then some. The power of making a high attendance figure look like proof of a good operations, wins and losses be damned.

But if Lacob is planning to turn this baby around for the profit any time soon, hes really going to have to find someone with real money to burn and a need to own an NBA franch . . .

Hey! We all know a guy who fits that descrip . . . oh, never mind. Its Larry Ellison. Yeah, I knew this would end badly. After all, its the Warriors. But at least nobody rolled an ankle this time.

Ray Ratto is a columnist for Comcast SportsNet Bay Area.

If eclipse ends life on Earth, it's bad news for fans of one Bay Area team


If eclipse ends life on Earth, it's bad news for fans of one Bay Area team

If the lunatic fringe of the lunatic fringe is right and the total eclipse of the sun is actually a harbinger of the end of life on earth . . .

- It’s good news for the Giants, who have been eliminated from the National League West race for less than 24 hours, or that they will not have to watch the Los Angeles Dodgers put their feet up on baseball for the first time in 28 years.

Besides, there won’t be any more years, so time becomes meaningless.

- It’s good news for the 49ers, who won’t have to endure a harsh week of practice from freshly irked head coach Kyle Shanahan, who finally saw exactly why the job came open for him in the first place.

- It’s good news for Raiders’ fans, who won’t see their team move to Las Vegas, and because they won't be soul-crushed if they can't beat the Patriots -- who will also die en masse despite Bill Belichick's entreaties to ignore the noise of seven billion terrorized shrieks.

- It’s bad news for A’s fans, who will never learn in what location their fabulous new franchise-saving stadium will not be built.

- It’s good news for the Warriors, who can say in their death throes that they were the last NBA champions ever, and that the Lakers will never get LeBron James.

- It’s good news for the Lakers because they cannot be found guilty of tampering with Paul George. It’s also good news for Jimmy Kimmel because he can’t lose a draft choice (some faceless F-list actor as a guest) as a result.

- It’s good news for the Kings, because they’ll never have to have the difficult meeting about Zach Randolph.

- It’s good news for the Chargers, because they won’t have to answer any more questions about why only 21,000 people were announced as the crowd for their second practice game, or to confront the very real possibility that they could become the NFL’s Washington Generals.

- It’s good news for the Jets, Mets, Nets and Knicks because the end of the planet is the only just solution for them all.

- It’s good news for Cal because it can stick its middle finger to the sky and say, “Here’s your $400 million debt. Try to collect it while we’re all dying.”

- It’s good news for Kevin Durant because he doesn’t have to slalom through the Internet trolls any more.

- It’s bad news for Roger Goodell, because he sure left a boatload of money on the table as he was hurtled into space like the rest of us.

- It’s bad news for Nick Saban because he will have never seen it coming. On the other hand, it’s good news for the people who cover Alabama football because they’ve endured their last journalism lecture from Prof. Nick on why they do their jobs so poorly.

- It’s bad luck for Jim Harbaugh because he will feel like a complete nitwit as he learns just what “an enthusiasm unknown to mankind” really means – the end of mankind.

- It’s bad news for all the sixth graders in America who are being offered scholarships that they will never be used by college coaches they will never meet. Of course, that would have been true even  if the world doesn’t end.

- It’s bad news for the hackers who have been spoiling Game Of Thrones because this is Game Of Thrones, only the dragon is the sun incinerating us all.

- It’s bad news for Kyrie Irving, because he will have died a Cleveland Cavalier.

- It’s good news for America, for the obvious reason that the planet will expire before our current political class can murder it.

- And finally, it’s good news for dignity, because the Mayweather-McGregor “thing” will never happen, and that alone means that even as we are torn asunder, we will know that the deity loves us all because both McGrogor and Mayweather are being torn asunder too.

Of course, if you’re reading this Tuesday, you’ll know the world didn’t end, and we’re just as screwed as we ever were. Oh well. Try to find your happy place, and drink like there’s no Wednesday.

Phrase that Matt Joyce left out of his apology is key to talking the talk

Phrase that Matt Joyce left out of his apology is key to talking the talk

Matt Joyce said the word, he did the apology, he’ll do the time, and then we’ll see if he’ll get the forgiveness he asks.
Joyce’s two-game suspension by Major League Baseball for using a gay slur at a fan during Friday’s Athletics-Angels game in Anaheim is well within industry norms (though it might have been more tactically impressive if the club itself had issued the suspension), and his apology did not deflect blame or contain the always-insincere caveat “if I offended anyone.” He did offend people and he knew it, so he didn’t couch it in the phraseology of “I don’t think what I said was improper, but I’ll do the perp walk just to get this over with.”
He even offered to do work with PFLAG, the support group that supports the LGBTQ community, thereby putting his time (which is more meaningful than money) where his mouth was.
In other words, he seems to have taken his transgression properly to heart, which is all you can really hope for, and now we’ll see if he is granted the absolution he seeks.
You see, we’re a funny old country in that we talk forgiveness all the time but grant it only sparingly, and only after a full mental vetting of important things like “Do we like this guy?” and “Is he playing for my favorite team?” and “Do I feel like letting him up at all?”
In other words, forgiveness is very conditional indeed.
Joyce said what he said, but his apology seemed to be given freely and unreservedly rather than crafted to meet a minimal standard of corporate knee-taking/arse-covering. If he follows through on his offer to do face-to-face work with PFLAG or an associated group and absorbs the lesson of not using other people as a weapon for his own frustration, then he ought to be acknowledged for doing so. That’s what forgiveness is.
But if the principle you adhere to is “once guilty, forever doomed,” then you’ve succeeded at giving in to the mode of the day, which is jumping to a conclusion and never jumping back because it’s just easier and more convenient to do so.
It’s up to him. But it’s also up to you.