20190418_071544- Deer 120190429_084124

By Danny Golding 

Aaron Rodgers Jimmy G 49ers Packers.jpg

For the first 8 games of the season all of the talk was; are the 49ers a legit playoff contender or did they just get lucky with an easy schedule? Well, they now have the toughest test to try to prove that they are indeed a deep playoff threat. The Packers, Ravens and Saints are a combined 24-6. The game on Sunday was originally suppose to be a 1:00 start, but has been flexed to Sunday Night Football. Aaron Rodgers this year has a 64.8% completion percentage, thrown for 2718 yards, 17 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions! Defensively, the 49ers most likely are gonna be without Dee Ford for a couple weeks, after he suffered a hamstring injury following a sack on Kyler Murray in the 36-26 win over the Cardinals.  The defensive dominance has been the key element in the 49ers almost undefeated record, however the run defense hasn’t been as dominant as of late. In the 2 match ups against the Cardinals, the Niners gave up a combined 288 yards, 147 yards in the Monday Night Football match up against the Seahawks, and 130 yards against Christian McCaffrey and the Carolina Panthers in the 55-13 blowout win. They now prepare to face Aaron Jones and the Packers. Robert Saleh is confident that how they have defended against the run lately is not an issue. The Niners are battling injuries on the defensive front with Kwon Alexander’s season ending torn pec in Arizona, D.J Jones’ groin injury,  Azeez Al-Shaair’s concussion, and Dee Ford’s quad. Jones and Shaair are going to play against Green Bay. The Niners are going to be going up against Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson, and Drew Brees these next 3 weeks. The defense is going to have to be dominant facing 3 high powered offenses.

The biggest injury concern is on the offensive side of the ball as George Kittle and Emmanuel Sanders are both battling injuries. Kittle suffered a knee/ankle injury in the Halloween game in Arizona, he finished playing the game but has not played in the Seattle game or the home game against the Cardinals. Sanders’ is battling a ribs injury that he suffered at the end of the first half in the Seahawks game. He was able to play the first 3 quarters against the Cardinals battling pain, and is questionable against the Packers. Kittle is doubtful. The Niners were able to utilize Deebo Samuel last week as he had 8 receptions for 134 yards. Kyle Juszczyk was a big factor with 7 receptions for 63 yards. Richie James Jr’s 57 yard reception when the Niners were down 16-0 and struggling on offense, was the spark that got them going. The Niners will need to utilize all their offensive weapons with their main stars injured. The last 3 games the 49ers have been held to a combined 229 yards rushing, including only 34 yards in the Arizona game last week. Tevin Coleman was still able to help the offense as he had 3 receptions for 48 yards and Jeff Wilson Jr caught the game winning touchdown reception. In this Niners Packers rivalry, some memorable moments come to mind. Most notably Steve Young’s game winning touchdown pass to Terrell Owens for a 23-20 win in the 1998 NFC Wildcard game and Colin Kaepernick’s 181 yard and 2 touchdown rushing performance and 263 yard and 2 touchdown passing performance which lead the Niners to a 45-31 win. This game on Sunday could very well mean the return of this rivalry as the Northern California native Aaron Rodgers and the Packers and Jimmy Garoppolo and the Niners look to battle it out on Sunday Night Football, and these 2 teams could very well meet again in the playoffs.

 

 

By Danny Golding 

wallpaper download (1)

When you go the first 8 games of the season without experiencing an L, it can sure take it’s toll.  No one expected the 49ers to go 16-0, however no one would have placed a bet on the Niners losing their first game when the score was 10-0 49ers against Seattle2 on Monday Night. In an overtime battle; the Seahawks lead by Russel Wilson and his 232 passing yards got the upper hand over the 49ers 27-24 after rookie kicker Chase McLaughlin failed to make the game winning field goal.  The main concern following the Niners first loss of the 2019 season was the dropped passes. Kendrick Bourne, despite getting a big 3rd down reception on the first drive, the first touchdown reception and a 2 point conversation reception had crucial drops that were a game changer, including one that went off his hands and into the hands of Seahawks safety Quandre Diggs for an interception. Marquise Goodwin before getting hurt, also had a big drop. Dante Pettis proved that apart from a game winning touchdown week 3 against the Steelers, that he is just not a reliable target for Jimmy Garoppolo to throw to. Deebo Samuel, despite 8 receptions for 112 yards had a drop in overtime on the last drive when Jimmy threw downfield to him that could have won the game.  The 49ers are now facing a 3-6-1 Cardinals team that despite their record always shows up to play against the Niners. They gave the 49ers a run for their money a couple weeks ago, and would handed them their first loss, if a few things had happened differently. Before that, they had an 8 game winning streak against the 49ers. The Cardinals also have big weapons on offense with the legendary Larry Fitzgerald, Kenyan Drake, Christian Kirk, KeeSean Johnson, and Andy Isabella. Rookie Quarterback Kyler Murray is also coming off a 324 yards and 3 touchdown game in the 30-27 loss against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

With George Kittle and Emmanuel Sanders questionable Sunday,  Deebo Samuel Kendrick Bourne, and Dante Pettis need to step up.  All Pro Cornerback Patrick Peterson is also suppose to pay on Sunday despite battling a calf injury. This Cardinals team always plays their A game against the 49ers, so if the Niners want to prove that they are still one of the top teams in the NFL, they need to beat the 3-6-1 Arizona Cardinals in a convincing fashion. All of the division games are important but the last thing the Niners want to lose is the 1 game lead against Seattle in the NFC West standings. What Kyle Shanahan, Robert Saleh and the 49ers are hoping for is that by the time the week 17 game in Seattle comes up, they will already have the NFC West clinched, so they can rest starters and not having to worry about anyone getting injured for the playoff hunt. Injuries may been a major factor in preventing the 49ers with a perfect record and with a much more dominant presence against the whole league. The early bye week and the Seahawks losing a couple games have benefited the 49ers in the division standings, they now have to do whatever it takes to keep that lead in the NFC West!

By Danny Golding

Do you remember the last time the 49ers had a MEANINGFUL big prime national TV division showdown? Well it was against this very same Seattle Seahawks team but in an NFC Championship game played on January 19, 2014 in which the Seahawks defeated the 49ers in a close battle on a pass from Colin Kaepernick that was tipped by future 49ers Cornerback Richard Sherman and into the hands of Malcon Smith to clinch an NFC title for the Seahawks. Along with Navarro Bowman’s injury, a moment 49er fans will forever remember is Richard Sherman’s postgame interview with Erin Andrews where he called Michael Crabtree a “sorry receiver” and himself the “best corner in the game”. Many 49er fans were insulted by that, but now almost 6 years later Richard Sherman is on the other side trying to help the 49ers defense remain undefeated against his former Quarterback Russel Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks.  The Niners snapped a 9 game losing streak against the Seahawks last year with a 26-23 win at Levi’s Stadium with Nick Mullens at Quarterback. Now with the 49ers being at 8-0 on top of both the NFC West and the entire NFL and the Seahawks being 7-2 with below them for division standings, the 49ers look to remain both undefeated and to keep a convincing lead in the NFC West standings.

The 49ers have had 10 days of rest after the Halloween win over the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday Night Football in a game where Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 317 yards and 4 touchdowns. Jimmy looks to pick up right where he left off, but he will most likely have to do it without pro bowl tight end George Kittle who is doubtful with knee and ankle issues. George has been the Niners biggest offensive threat since the beginning of the 2018 season.  After the injury to Kyle Juszczyk, Ross Dwelley got the start at Fullback/Tight End, and now with Kittle most likely ruled out tonight against the Seahawks and Juszczyk back healthy, Dwelley will start at Tight End. Dwelley got the game winning first down reception in Arizona on Halloween. Another new key component to the 49ers offense is all pro Wide Receiver Emmanuel Sanders. In Sanders’ first game after being traded from the Denver Broncos, he had 1 touchdown and 4 receptions in the 51-13 win over the Carolina Panthers. In the Thursdays Night showdown in Arizona, he had 1 touchdown, 7 receptions for 122 yards. Sanders filled in the one weakness this 49ers team had at the Wide Receiver position.

The defensive side of the ball also suffered a catastrophic loss in the previous game with Kwon Alexander’s season ending torn pectoral injury. Dre Greenlaw who had 3 tackles and a sack last week will have to step up, along with Fred Warner. The defense has been dominate for the entire season but has a tough challenge tonight against Russel Wilson. Another major event that caused a lot of Niner fans hate on Richard Sherman when he was on the other side of the Seahawks rivalry was the 2014 Thanksgiving game when Richard Sherman and Russel Wilson ate turkey on the 50 yard line with NBC’s Michele Tafoya after beating the 49ers 19-3 in a gimmick that was set up by the NBA network. If the Niners win tonight, they will be 9-0 for the the first time since 1990. The 1990 team started 10-0. Just a couple years ago in 2017, the Niners started 0-9. This will be the biggest game in the short lived history of Levi’s Stadium!
 

 

By Danny Golding

Going into 2019 the 49ers had high expectations with Jimmy Garoppolo  being fully healthy after tearing his ACL in week 3 of 2018, but most people would not have picked them to start the season off 3-0, especially with the Pittsburgh Steelers with what what was originally thought to have been Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback on their schedule for week 3. However, the way the 49ers defense played they could have easily won this game with Big Ben at QB. Mason Rudolph was 14/27 and threw for 174 yard with 2 touchdowns, not bad for a young quarterback making his first career start.  The first of 5  turnovers occurred in the Niners first offensive possession when Jimmy G threw a screen pass to Matt Breida was bobbled off Breida’s hands and into the hands of Steelers linebacker T.J Watt. Pittsburgh ended up with a field goal on the following drive to make it 3-0 to 11:45 remaining in the first quarter. On the following drive Jimmy was sacked for the only time in the game by defensive end Stephon Tuitt. Jimmy G a couple plays later attempted to pitch the ball to Raheem Mostert, the ball went off Mostert’s hands and was a fumble but the Niners offense was able to recover.  The following 49ers possession Jimmy threw a pass to Donte Pettis that was off Pettis’ hands and into the hands of Minkah Fitzpatrick. The Steelers on their next possession got deep into the red zone but the Niners defense still managed to hold them to a field goal as they took a 6-0 lead with two minutes left to go in the first quarter. In the first drive in the beginning of the second quarter, Mostert fumbled at the Steelers 10 yard line after what would have been a big first down run. So, yes that’s 4 turnovers in the first half and the defense was still able to hold Pittsburgh to 6 points in the first half.

One of the big plays of the first half was Kyle Juszczyk’s diving catch for 22 yards. Juszczyk ended up having 3 receptions for 51 yards, he could prove to be a valuable hidden weapon.  The Niners failed to get into the end zone in the first half but still managed to score 3 points to make it 6-3 Pittsburgh at the half.  On the defensive side of the ball, Dee Ford scored his 2nd sack in a 49er uniform, Deforest Buckner who’s having a great start to the season also had a sack, and K’Waun Williams picked off Mason Rudolph. The defense was not kind to Rudolph as they pressured him all game. The 49ers got their first touchdown of the game with 9:17 left to go in the 3rd quarter when Jeff Wilson JR ran it in for the first of two times. Wilson got his 2nd rushing touchdown with a minute left to go in the third quarter, and it was 17-13 49ers going into the fourth.  In the Steelers first possession in the 4th, following a pass interference call on Jason Verrett, Mason Rudolph found Diontae Johnson for a touchdown to make it 20-17 Steelers. The 49ers got their fifth turnover in the red zone with 6:50 left to go as Richie James JR fumbled. That turnover looked like it was gonna be the nail in the coffin and the Steelers were gonna be able to hold on and get the win, but shortly after on the Steelers next possession, Arik Armstead knocked the ball out of James Conner’s hands and Deforest Buckner recovered! With a 1 minute and 21 seconds left to go Jimmy G found Dante Pettis for the game winning touchdown! The 49ers stopped the Steelers on all four downs on their next possession and won the game 24-20. The defense stopping the Steelers from getting into the end zone in the first half proved to be a game changer.  The only negative in the Niners 41-17 win over the Bengals in week 2 was the lower left leg injury to Joe Staley in the fourth quarter. Rookie Justin Skule made his first career start with Staley expected to be out six weeks. Skule’s performance in his first game was praised by Kyle Shanahan, Laken Tomlinson and Levine Toilolo, however in the fourth quarter Skule was penalized three times, twice for holding and once for an illegal blindside. Justin Skule is going to have to work on limiting penalties. Ahkello Witherspoon was carted off the field with a foot injury and is expected to miss at least the next month.

The 49ers are now 3-0 for the first time since 1998 and are going into an early week 4 bye week before they take on the Cleveland Browns on Monday Night Football the following week. Jalen Hurd and Tevin Coleman are expected to be back after the bye week. The 49ers running game with Matt Breida, Raheem Mostert, and Jeff Wilson JR, so the question is does Tevin Coleman even fit on this team? Jalen Hurd being healthy should be the last key piece on the Niners offense. Along with George Kittle, Deebo Samuel, Marquise Goodwin, and Dante Pettis, Jalen Hurd will be a key weapon for Jimmy Garoppolo. Speaking of Dante Pettis who had the game winning TD after being a practically a no show in the first 2 games. So the question is, are we gonna see more action from Pettis?

By Danny Golding

 

With Kevin Durant not even making the trip to Houston waiting to be reevaluated and despite the fact that the Warriors have an NBA title, a 73 win season and a Western Conference title without K.D, no won gave the Warriors a chance to win a game on the road in Houston. The Dubs did not let that get into their heads and were on fire from the tip off to the final buzzer! The game was almost a trade of points each possession. In the first half the Warriors offense mainly centered around Klay Thompson who lead the ball movement for the Warriors as Steph struggled in the first half.  Klay had 27 points. In the second half Steph came back and scored 33 points with a dominant 4th quarter. Kevon Looney and Shaun Livingson came out strong with some points in the paint, Kevon with 14 and Shaun with 11. Quinn Cook only had 2 points but played well on defense and helped move the offense in the first half. Andrew Bogut also had a good game defensively. Andre Iguodala proved he could be a dominant weapon in the postseason once again with 17 points, he hit five 3 pointers.  Chris Paul’s fade away jumper with 11 left to go made it 89-82 Rockets. Iguodala then hit a 3 pointer followed by a Steph layup to make it back into a two point game. Just a prime example about how the playoff Warriors don’t let a small defecate on the road get to them and most of the time come back next possession and answer back. The old Warriors motto was “Strength in Numbers” meaning that the numbers of everyone contributing is greater then the numbers of a few star players was pretty much how the Dubs closed out the series without Kevin Durant and with Steph struggling in the first half. Curry’s 33 point second half, Livingson’s 11 points, Looney’s 14 points, Andre’s 17 points and Klay’s 27 points is what let them stay in the game despite James Harden hitting almost every shot he took with 35 points and Chris Paul’s 27 points. P.J Tucker also had 15 points. After  the game 5’s 104-99 victory at Oracle, Steve Kerr quoted Liverpool’s Soccer coach Jurgen Klobb who after leading  his team to a comeback win against Barcelona to advance to the UEFA Champions League final, he said his team was “intelligent fucking giants” acknowledging that the young kids in Liverpool would probably be asleep. After game 5 Steve Kerr quoted him, apologized to his mom and said “Our guys are fucking Giants”

The official San Francisco Giants Twitter account  had fun with it.We gotta trademark that line

After game 6, Kerr was asked what he’s gonna call them tonight: “Just Giants, I’m not gonna swear tonight. They’re Giants, they’re Champions. They’re a historically good Basketball team. ”

With the Portland Trailblazers game 7 win against the Denver Nuggets in another great down to the wire game lead by CJ McCollum’s 37 points. This series has a lot of interesting story lines with Damian Lillard returning to his hometown of Oakland to play against the Warriors in the battle for a Western Conference title in the last year of Oracle Arena, an arena that he grew up going to games in. Stephen Curry vs Seth Curry the first time 2 brothers have ever played against each other in a conference championship series. Kevin Durant will be reevaluated on Thursday and will not play games 1 or 2. DeMarcus Cousins who initially was said to be out for the remainder of the playoffs, could play at some point in this series. Game 1 will be tomorrow night at Oracle Arena.

By Danny Golding

On a big Bay Area sports night with the Warriors playing potentially their last ever game at Oracle Arena in a game 5 against the Houston Rockets. Like the Warriors game, the Sharks game 7 against the Colorado Avalance was at home in the Bay Area. The Sharks had also played one of the most historic games in NHL history in their previous series against the Las Vegas Golden Knights which was also a game 7.  In that game Captain Joe Pavelski suffered a concussion after being cross checked which lead to the 5 minute major that lead to the Sharks to score 4 goals in 2:48 which put the Sharks in the lead 4-3 after previously being down 3-0. The Sharks ended up winning 5-4 in overtime. This game 7 was had the Sharks motivated and confident to put away the Avalance the same way they put away the Knights in the previous series at the Shark tank! The Sharks players and fans were in for a pleasant surprise as they saw Joe Pavelski in the lineup for the first time since the previous game 7. Pavelski scored the first goal of the game early into the first period which was followed by Tomas Hertl’s goal with 8:25 left to go in the first. Mikko Rantanen scored a goal for Colorado with 7 seconds left in the first period to cut the Sharks lead to 2-1. Joonas Donskoi scored his first goal since January with 7:23 left in the second period. The Sharks ended up winning 3-2 to close out the series. The Sharks will start the Western Conference finals against the St Louis Blues on Saturday! What a time for Bay Area sports!

By Danny Golding

 

Well this postseason has been rocky and boy is that an understatement! In game 2 of the series against the Clippers Demarcus Cousins suffered a torn achilles injury and last night fears were that Kevin Durant could have suffered the same fate. At the end of the 2nd quarter after hitting a jumper he appeared to not be able to walk normally. Today, it was announced that KD had only suffered a mild calf strain.  Curry looked like his normal self  as the Dubs executed well in the 4th quarter and came away with the victory in a 104-99 down to the wire battle.  Kevin Durant will be reevaluated next week but will be out for the rest of this series. It’s the Warriors turn to prove they can contend for a 3 peat without their superstar addition that’s helped them win the last 2 titles. Game 6 is tonight at 6:00 in Houston although this is a must win for the Rockets to keep their season alive, the Rockets have already beaten the Warriors in game 3 and 4 and have every potential to blow out the Warriors tonight. The Dubs have won an NBA title without KD and have won 73 games and and a Western Conference title without KD, but this team is going to have the most challenging time trying to 3 peat if KD isn’t able to come back for the Western Conference finals. First things first though, the Dubs need to win game 6 or 7 for us to even talk about the Western Conference finals. Although game 7 looks like the most promising outcome, the Dubs would love nothing more then to prove they can win in Houston without KD and end this series tonight. In 2015 the Warriors won an NBA title not only with Steph, Klay, Draymond Iguodala, Bogut and Shaun Livingson but also with Harrison Barnes, Leandro Barbosa, Marreese Speights, Fetsus Ezeil and David Lee. Those players especially Barnes and Barbosa were big keys that won them the 2014-2015 NBA title. The original players that are also on this team Steph, Klay, Draymond, Bogut and Livingson need to step up as well as Alfonzo Mckinnie, Jonas Jerebko, Quinn Cook, Jordan Bell and Kevon Looney. They are 1 win away from advancing to the Western Conference Finals but also 2 losses away from being eliminated in the playoffs without making it to the finals, a fate that hasn’t actually happened since 2014.  Kevin Durant could return next series if they pull off that one more year, but it could also have been KD’s last appearance on the Dubs as well as the end of the Dynasty. It is in the Warriors hands to keep the dynasty alive!

By Danny Golding

With the Giants season not going particularly well a month into Bruce Bochy’s final year managing, games where they’re able to put up a lot of runs is crucial to have a shot at contention and a lot to stay relevant on the radar for Bay Area sports fans with both the Warriors and Sharks deep into their respective playoff races. The Oakland A’s also happened to get a no hitter with Mike Fiers on the mound as they beat the Reds 2-0. With the Giants tied for last place in the National League West with the Colorado Rockies at 16-20, and things not looking to promising what game to start making some offense happen then a game a series opener at Coors Field against those same Colorado Rockies with Madison Bumgarner on the mound. Madison showed signs of his old dominant self pitching 6 innings with 8 stikeouts and only giving up 3 runs (2 of them on homeruns from Charlie Blackmon and Chris Iannetta). The big stort was Mac Williamson in his first game of the season after being called up from Triple A hitting the 3 run homer in the top of the 4th inning. Following Williamson’s homerun, Brandon Crawford singled which was followed by Kevin Pillar hitting a 2 run homer making it 6-1. Evan Longoria had previously hit a solo homerun in the top of the 2nd inning. Mac Williamson and Madison Bumgarner’s successful night and the Giants gaining some ground on the Rockies made for some action that the Giants were looking for in 2019!

20190417_193449

Sunset from my backyard April 17, 2019

 

 

 

20190418_071544- Deer 1

Deer spotted over my backyard wall April 18, 2019

 

 

20190423_170643 (1)

View from the top of my driveway of Black Mountain April 23,  2019

 

 

 

20190426_151630 (2)

My Driveway being remodeled April 26, 2019

 

 

 

20190429_084124

View of my backyard on a somewhat cloudy day April 29, 2019