This may not be the year


Unbeknownst to me, the sports gods decreed this would be a year in which they take away rather than give.


That is the only thing I can imagine after suffering a seismic double whammy last week. Perhaps some explanation is in order.

There are three teams that bring out the inner fan within me. In no particular order, I am sold out for OU football, in addition to the Dallas Cowboys and Oklahoma City Thunder. When any of these teams are playing, cancel the plans. Well, maybe not the Thunder so much over the past two years. But you get the idea.

Earlier this year, the OU football team provided some turbulent days, thanks in no part to Lincoln Riley. Time has healed that wound and I can safely say the Sooner program is better off heading into the future. That is all I need to dwell on over this subject. Conrad wrote some stories and I doubt he would appreciate me trying to hog space with a dedicated rant.

As anger gave way to excitement for OU, both the Thunder and the Cowboys suffered a huge lose. 

For the Thunder, it was Chet Holmgren’s Lisfranc injury. That is some problem with the foot that appears to end your season with surgery. 

Were the Thunder going to the playoffs with Chet? I have no idea. But the chances seemed a lot better. A 7-footer who can shoot a 3-pointer and block shots can be an exciting addition to a team. Even if he looks like he has yet to discover barbecue and Mexican food. 

Apparently, the Thunder will be okay, so the Thunder sales rep people tell me. Saturday, it was explained to me the team is on the upswing. I’m not sure if they are talking about the future. I’m not sure if anyone mentioned Chet’s injury. 

I know that after I heard about it, I was stunned for about 15 minutes and then it dawned on me. Oklahoma City is now in the running for another lottery year and generational talent Victor Wembenyama. 

Thunder up!


The loss of Tyron Smith was significantly more devastating. 

Smith is one of the top left tackles in the NFL. If you are not sure how important that job is, Sandra Bullock does a commendable job of explaining during the first minutes of “The Blind Side.” 

The problem for Smith and the Cowboys is that he struggles to stay on the field. Two seasons ago, he missed 14 games and last season, he missed six. 

The Cowboys are not the type of team that leave much room for error.

Since 2016, Smith has missed at least three games. You can learn more about human anatomy by following Smith’s injuries than you can in most high school classrooms. 

As luck would have it, Dallas general manager/owner Jerry Jones appears to have not adequately prepared for the possibility of Smith being out this season. Even if the rookie from Tulsa can fill in without committing three penalties a game, the cupboard is currently bare behind him. Friday night, my sister-in-law and brother-in-law were in town, and we went out to The Lokal for refreshment and socializing. At 7 p.m., the final Dallas preseason game came on, which caused me to immediately focus on the game, searching for clues on how Dallas plans to proceed without Smith. 

My brother-in-law Chris cannot for the life of him figure out what can be so interesting about a game featuring second and third stringers. He is just too polite to put it that way. Meanwhile, my wife Bonne can only shake her head and explain this is life for the next five months. 

Nope babe. Dallas last won a Super Bowl in 1996 and with the most recent injury to Smith, it appears this is life for another year.

Five months should be so easy.

Michael Pineda is a staff writer for The Yukon Progress. He can be reached at