CHANGING PACE

Raheel Ramzanali: Some off the wall rule changes for all the major sports

New rule: James Harden has to bet his beard. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

With rule changes being all the rage in sports these days, here are some other rules I would like to see implemented across all sports:

  • MLB - The Dock Ellis Card: Did you know LSD is still banned in baseball? As my co-host Del explained to me, “hey dumbass, LSD is still illegal so yes it is banned,” so yes it is. I think LSD being banned is dumb. If anybody still wants to take a tab of LSD and be a professional baseball player they should be able to do it. I want to take it a step further and implement a new rule where each manager is given a Dock Ellis Card every game and they can use it at anytime to make any player on their or opposing team take a tab of LSD. Could you imagine the fun we would have watching a pitcher try to get his bearings in a 2-1 game?! Facing Aaron Judge? Use the Dock Ellis Card on him and he’ll strike out even more due to the hallucinations. This adds another layer of managing and now AL managers can actually manage games in the regular season!

  • NFL - Headset Espionage: The NFL goes to great lengths to prevent teams from picking up each other’s headset frequencies. For those of you that don’t know, the NFL (and pretty much all of football) depends heavily on headsets to communicate with the QB, coaches in the coaches box, and each other on the sidelines. Wouldn’t the NFL be way more fun if each team had 30 seconds worth of espionage use? Meaning, they could listen in to their opponents audio feed and gather all the info they wanted to, but for only a total of 30 seconds. The game within the game would become even better with teams throwing out fake calls during times they feel like the other team is using their espionage time.

  • NBA - Gimmick Bet: The NBA is wildly popular because of their superstars. Unfortunately, most of their superstars are gimmick based and that bothers me. The Beard, The King, The Unibrow, etc. will now have to make a bet before each playoff series where they put their gimmicks on the line. Could you imagine how hard James Harden would play if his Beard gimmick was on the line?! Just thinking about the potential bets is making me even more interested in the playoffs. Celtics vs Cavs in the Eastern Conference Finals we get to see LeBron put The King on the line against Kyrie’s Uncle Drew. Loser has to end the gimmick and think of something new for 2019.

  • NBA - Houston Rule: A team can delay the start of seven total games by 30 minutes every year (including playoffs) so the crowd can filter in. I get it, life comes up and traffic is the worst so I’m not here to bash Rockets fans for not being in their seats when games tip, but I am going to help the teams out. I think they should be able to delay the start by 30 mins if they feel like the crowd is too thin for a real home court advantage. Now teams won’t be stuck with the predicament of a less than stellar crowd during a playoff game. This gives the crowd time to fight traffic, park, and get in their seats.

 

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Another tough loss for Houston. Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images.

The Houston Texans lost again as their road game ineptitude continues. Former Texans stars DeAndre Hopkins and J.J. Watt helped the Cardinals to the 31-5 victory.

1. The lack of talent is getting exposed earlier and earlier each week. The Texans have seen games slip away faster and faster from them each week. The team is overmatched almost everywhere.

2. Penalties remain a problem for the Texans. It seems like clockwork the team gets an illegal motion or illegal formation each week. Jordan Akins torpedoed a drive with a chop block. Max Scharping erased a positive play with a hold.

3. Davis Mills had some solid moments, but again, this team isn't good. It is hard to assess Mills with this team. He's making quicker decisions but he doesn't have the time or the players to make big plays.

4. The offensive line stinks. The interior of the line is still a mess and with Laremy Tunsil down the edges find themselves shaky as well. The running backs don't block well. The blocking tight ends don't block well. It is bad football in what was supposed to be a much-improved unit.

5. Desmond King was the best returner in the preseason. The team elected to give Andre Roberts an opportunity for a few games, but with his departure, the duties went to King. King is the most successful returner the Texans have had in a long while. Yes, it is that clear after just one game.

6. Max Scharping was benched in favor of Justin McCray. McCray produced similar levels of success. Scharping was benched last year for a journey-man veteran as well. The former second-round pick isn't getting it done.

7. Speaking of former second-round picks, Lonnie Johnson had an interception. That was the highlight of his day. Otherwise, Johnson frequently has me asking "what is Lonnie Johnson doing?" The former second-round pick at cornerback has been less than impressive at safety. Johnson seems to frequently be out of position or making the wrong choice in coverage.

8. DeAndre Hopkins had a solid day against the team that traded him away. Hopkins hauled in seven catches for 53 yards and a touchdown. After he scored, Hopkins looked to bring his hands together and mimic a prayer motion. I don't anticipate this was a nod to Arian Foster but perhaps could this have been about Jack Easterby?

9. The Texans had some sacks, but little of that action came when the game was close. Jonathan Greenard added two sacks to his total. The success Greenard is having is frustrating when you consider he couldn't get on the field last season. Charles Omenihu returned to action and had some pressures for the defense.

10. During the game reports surfaced that the Panthers might be interested in trading for Deshaun Watson. It was also reported by the Houston Chronicle Watson had vetoed a trade to Philadelphia, so the Eagles will not be involved in the Watson sweepstakes. The Panthers can only trade two first-round picks. The Miami Dolphins have three first-round picks they can trade for Deshaun Watson.

11. The Texans decided on a "culture" head coach in David Culley. His team has looked lifeless on the road. While the Texans took their beating, the Lions gave it their all against a good Rams team. Detroit is winless, but they play harder and better than the Texans. It grows clearer each week "culture" is meaningless if the team can't win.

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