• Jonathan Brannan

5-POINT FRIDAY, JANUARY 3rd, 2020

Updated: Jun 1, 2020

This article was originally published on January 3rd, 2020.


Here is this week's dose of “5-Point Friday”. A weekly round-up of the sports news and stories that I find most interesting and enjoyable.


Baseball news I am excited about -


The MLB and the MLB Umpires Association reached a tentative five-year labor deal that will run through the 2024 regular season. Umpires have reportedly agreed to cooperate with MLB on plans to adopt an automated strike zone at the major league level over that period. This will see TrackMan 3D Doppler radar used to track each pitch to determine balls and strikes automatically. Calls are then relayed via ear-piece to the home-plate umpire.

Football news I am researching -


NFL teams averaged 66,648 fans at home during the 2019 regular season, the lowest figure since 2004. It is the first time since 2010 average attendance dropped below 67,000. In all, 15 teams saw at least some decline in home attendance this season, including, most significantly, the Bengals (-7.0%), Raiders (-7.6%) and Jaguars (-8.7%).


Basketball personality I am learning about -


David Stern, the NBA commissioner during the most successful period in league history, died as a result of the brain hemorrhage, age 77.

Stern took over the NBA in 1984 with the league at a crossroads. But over the course of 30 years as Commissioner, he ushered in the modern global NBA. He launched groundbreaking media and marketing partnerships, digital assets, and social responsibility programs that have brought the game to billions of people around the world. Because of David, the NBA is a truly global brand, making him not only one of the greatest sports commissioners of all time but also one of the most influential business leaders of his generation.


Rugby story I am following -


Premiership rugby may look at scrapping relegation and choose to ring-fence the league at the end of the season, according to former England wing Ugo Monye (@ugomonye). With a number of the league's traditional big-name teams near the bottom of the league, the suggestion is that if one of these big hitters does end up being relegated the league would remove the relegation feature from the league.

Soccer game I attended -


At the weekend I went to the Lanarkshire Derby, between Motherwell and Hamilton Academical, at Fir Park. Hamilton would go on to stun their local rivals, coming out 2-1 victors, as they clinch their first Scottish Premiership away win this season. An early Christopher Long goal had the high-flying hosts ahead early on but a second-half double from Aaron McGowan (@AaronMcGowan_) and David Moyo delivered Accies' first Lanarkshire Derby win since August 2018.

Have a wonderful weekend, all!


Jonathan