‘For What It’s Worth’, June 1st

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I love DIA, even if I don’t like the process of getting to it. The first time I ventured out there from downtown, I felt like I needed a Sherpa to find it. I know, I know… it’s only 37 minutes via light rail from Union Station but the problem was the light rail was down when I last tried to use it.

On another note, I was struck by the timing of Paul Simon performing in Berkley, CA last Friday—sadly announcing the passing of Muhammed Ali while in the midst of his song ‘The Boxer’…which leads me to:

Passing of a legend—
I can’t possibly add much more to what’s been said about the life, legend and legacy of Muhammed Ali. Simply put, he was the most iconic, transcendent and transformative athlete of my generation. He was a man whose character was measured by the depth of his convictions and those convictions never wavered.

For a young boy growing up in the Pacific Northwest– his stands on religion and the war in Vietnam were my first recognition of the power of social activism. That he swam so tirelessly against the mainstream early in his life and emerged so universally beloved, is a testament to the power of love that he so espoused. I simply can’t think of a finer thing to be remembered by.

Rest well Champ.

Seeing orange—
Even before I knew I was coming to Denver, I figured the Broncos would be a pretty big deal, then I got here and realized how much I underestimated them. Early on here, I was asked ‘how do you look in orange?’ How does anyone look in orange I thought, but I got the message and it’s totally understandable.

Now, two weeks later, I’m already a veteran of OTA’s…ok, one day of OTA’s, which uniquely qualifies me to make sweeping conclusions, right? Actually, I subscribe completely to the Gary Kubiak approach of ‘we’re trying to be the best team that we can be by September’, so I’ll only offer a couple of observations:
Paxton Lynch has real potential, right now it’s measured more in upside than it is in terms of immediate help. How much will he grow in the ninety or so days before the season starts? A bunch. He admits that the learning curve is steep, as is the adjustment to the speed of the game in NFL. While he’s comfortable with his growing knowledge of the playbook, he has a way to go on his footwork. That’s not unusual in the age of spread offenses in college, where a quarterback never takes a snap under center or the five step drop he’ll need to get into the pocket in the NFL. Kubiak describes Lynch’s footwork as ‘having to think about it, instead of just doing it’, Lynch himself says he’s still ‘connecting the dots’.

There is no question about his arm, his accuracy, and his touch. You only need to see him once to know why people are so excited about him, although those who are proclaiming a ‘quarterback controversy’ at Mile High are just trying to churn talking points in a 24-hour news cycle—we simply haven’t seen enough. Heck, Gary Kubiak hasn’t seen enough.
My other thought has to do with the overall attitude this team appears to have approached the offseason with. The energy and focus I saw last week certainly belied a group full of itself after a Super Bowl Championship. Having said, any assessments have to be digested cautiously—last I checked, they’re only working out with blanks in the chamber.

The Joker—
I’m no more than a passing fan of tennis. When Borg, McEnroe, Connors, Martina and Chrissie ruled the courts I was much more locked in, but I must admit that the success of Novak Djokovic is intriguing.
His first win at the French Open yesterday allowed him to become just the third player in history to hold all four of the Grand Slam titles simultaneously. He’s only the eighth player to win all four majors in a career—something that Borg, McEnroe, Connors and Sampras never did. Is that enough for me to watch Wimbledon?

My goal is to post here every couple of days, the only bad reaction no reaction—so feel free to express your opinions Bruce.Haertl@kdvr.com

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