Despite the overwhelming amount of negative stories that 2017 will be remembered for, it was actually a pretty good year for sports. When the New Year comes around, there is nothing better than making baseless sports claims that will inevitably come back to bite you, which is why I bring to you the “5 Bold Sports Predictions for 2018” that I will live to regret by next New Year’s Eve.
1. Tiger Woods Will Win the Masters for the Fifth Time
Let’s start this list off on a high note, shall we? Following Tiger Woods’ humiliating escape from his own home over a decade ago, Woods doubled down on his race to rock bottom in the summer of 2017 when he was arrested for driving under the influence. It was immediately following his most recent run-in with the law that most golf fans finally accepted the fact that Woods would likely never return to the dominance that he once displayed regularly.
However, after overcoming all of the obstacles that Woods put in front of himself, he returned to the world of golf in the final trimester of 2017, and even finished tied for ninth place in the Hero World Challenge. Despite his prolonged absence from the top of the golf world, Woods’ appears to be within reach of grabbing his throne at least one more time before he’s finished playing. That is why in 2018, Tiger Woods will win the Masters for the first time since 2005, grabbing his fifth green jacket in the process.
Golf no longer needs Tiger Woods, as the sport has established a new generation of stars in the past decade, but there is no doubt that golf is at its best when Woods is in contention on the final day of tournament. With a promising performance in late 2017, combined with the confidence that his competitors have in Woods’ ability at this point in his career, I predict that this is the year where Woods will finally grab his 15th major victory.
2. Colin Kaepernick Will Be Signed to an NFL Team
I want to point out that it is absolute bullshit that I have to classify this as a bold prediction considering how talented we all know Colin Kaepernick is on the football field, but considering the animosity that has surrounded any potential interest in Kaepernick’s return, it remains relatively unlikely that he will find a home in the NFL before 2018 comes to an end.
Still, I remain hopeful that one of the teams that finds themselves on the “We Only Need a Quarterback and We Can Win the Super Bowl” list will finally come to their senses. Teams such as Jacksonville, Arizona, Denver and both of New York’s teams will all be in the running for an upgrade at the quarterback position, and Kap’s resume is unmatched when compared to the other players who will be available this off-season.
Despite all of the hubbub that surrounded Kaepernick in 2017, I predict that at least one team will finally take the non-existent “risk” on 2017’s Man of the Year.
3. Demarcus Cousins Will Be Traded Once Again
While Demarcus Cousins has been one of the ten best players in the NBA for quite some time, for some reason his talent has not led to team success. After joining forces with fellow All-Star, Anthony Davis, in New Orleans this season, the Pelicans have failed to make much noise in the Western Conference. Some nights, the team looks unstoppable, with Cousins and Davis simply overwhelming the opposition. More often, however, the team appears extremely top-heavy, lacking any offensive options after the team’s two star big-men.
Thus, I predict that the Pelicans will call it quits on their experimental system, and move Cousins at the trade deadline. Potential landing spots for Cousins are likely limited to teams that have a legitimate chance of winning a championship, as he has not proven to be a player who is interested in playing for a rebuilding team.
4. The Minnesota Vikings Will Win Their First Super Bowl
If you told me that Case Keenum was going to lead a team to the playoffs this season, I probably would have assumed that you just took a heroic dose of mushrooms. Here we are, however, entering the postseason, and I’m picking Case Keenum and the Minnesota Vikings to win the Super Bowl.
The Vikings ranked at the top of the defensive rankings this season in the NFL, and winning a playoff game in Minnesota’s sub-zero weather is a tall-task for any team that the Vikings might face. With a guaranteed home game in the second round, and a depleted NFC, the Vikings should waltz into the Super Bowl, where their first real test should be waiting for them.
5. The Cleveland Cavaliers Will Not Make It to the NBA Finals
This one hurts a little bit, because it means that I am admitting that the Boston Celtics have the best team in the Eastern Conference. Despite the rejuvenated effort that Cleveland has been putting forth in the past two months, and a promising return from star point guard Isaiah Thomas, the Celtics simply appear to be better at pretty much everything. It would be one thing if Boston relied on their scoring to win games, as that would make it a relatively level playing field between the Celtics and the Cavs, but Boston has the best defensive rating in the NBA. In comparison, Cleveland has the second worst defensive rating in the NBA.
Despite LeBron having the best statistical season of his entire career, the Celtics are pretty much better at every other position, including the depth of their bench. I haven’t rooted for LeBron very often during his career, but I would immediately accept this as my terrible sports prediction for 2018 if it came at the expense of the Celtics.