Hot Wires

Manziel loses another agent while touring LA party circuit

Johnny Manziel is a free agent on the absurdly lucrative NFL market, but his own agent refuses to represent him.  For the first time in his 27 years as a players’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus terminated a contract.  As reported by ESPN on Thursday, he’s hoping to induce the troubled 23-year-old quarterback to seek “the treatment I believe he needs.”

Rosenhsaus, the second agent in nine weeks to sever ties with Manziel, said he will rescind the termination if the player within the next five days enters a clinic to treat addiction.  Rosenhaus said: “I’m hoping he takes the necessary steps to get his life back on track.”

His life veered off the rails at the end of a rather promising sophomore season with the Cleveland Browns that followed a 10-week stint in a substance-abuse clinic in Pennsylvania.  Manziel wrested the starting quarterback position from veteran Josh McCown, but by the end of the season a drinking problem resurfaced.

Soon other problems developed.  In February, Manziel’s girlfriend, Collen Crowley, told police he hit her several times in the head and ruptured her eardrum.  That’s when Manziel’s first agent, Erik Burkhardt, abandoned him.

Manziel is expected to face a Dallas grand jury inquiry in upcoming weeks, as a misdemeanor assault charge is being considered.

Rosenhaus wanted his new client to seek rehabilitation from alcoholism and then market the football ability that won him the 2012 Heisman Trophy and made him a first-round draft pick with his own trademark: Johnny Football.

But Manziel rejected Rosenhaus’ advice, just as he ignored recent exhortations of his father, Paul Manziel of Kerrville, Tex., to return to rehab.

Instead, Manziel relocated to Los Angeles.  He told TMZ he was enjoying “the LA party scene . . . not doing anything crazy, though, being smart.”

Alas, it didn’t seem so smart when he was reported –- probably erroneously –- to be living with Josh Gordon, who may be about to undergo his fifth NFL suspension for substance abuse.

Manziel told TMZ he’s “not drinking,” that he’s “just hanging out with my buddies.”

But his buddies may not be the sort of company he needs.  Gordon is possibly not even the worst of them.

At 10:45 Saturday night, Manziel was a passenger in a car that slammed into a street-light pole.  On Sunset Boulevard.   The driver was one of Manziel’s buddies, Ryan Silverstein, who achieved Hollywood buzz with a year-long fling with Shay Mitchell, the 26-year-old well-cleaved star of the hit series Pretty Little Liars.

TMZ reported that Manziel and Silverstein fled the scene on foot and that they were picked up by – who else? Josh Gordon.   Who apparently on this occasion did something right.  He drove the wanderers back to the scene of the accident.

Silverstein is being investigated by Los Angeles police for hit-and-run.  Manziel appears to be in no trouble with the law for this episode, but it’s hardly reassuring to NFL teams such as Dallas and Denver that were interested in Manziel but won’t touch him until he makes a better effort to stabilize his life.

If you want more information on Manziel’s misadventures, see YouTube’s “Fifteen Dumbest Things Johnny Manziel Has Ever Done.”

If you want to know where he first began veering off track, CLICK here for Mark Roberson of Truex Sports Report writing about his fraternity house being vandalized by Johnny Football. 


Warriors with record 73rd win are not yet The Best Team Ever

The Golden State Warriors succeeded in their quest to break the Chicago Bulls’ record for most victories in a season, for which they can give some thanks to Gregg Popovich.  The San Antonio Spurs’ coach chose not to put up much of a stand to protect his own team’s unbeaten record (39-0) at home.  He benched his top two centers, Tim Duncan and Boris Diaw, for Sunday’s game at AT&T Center.

Popovich commonly rests Duncan, 39, on the road but usually starts him in home games when he’s healthy.  Apparently the coach was trying to make the point, as he’s done before, that the focus should be not on number of regular-season games won but on winning the NBA championship, which San Antonio and Golden State have done the past two years.

Thus, the Spurs coach insisted it’s not worth much more than “a cup of coffee” if his team goes undefeated at home.  Nor has he expressed much interest in the Warriors’ efforts to surpass the record of 72 victories established by Michael Jordan and the 1995-96 Bulls.

Without Duncan and Diaw, who along with small forward Kawhi Leonard are their most formidable defenders, the Spurs lost to the Warriors by 6 points.

Golden State went on to achieve a 73-9 record by thrashing Memphis in the Oracle Arena, 125-104, on Wednesday night.

As remarkable as it is, the 73 won’t mean much if the Warriors do not go on to win the NBA championship.

The 2007 New England Patriots had the best regular-season record ever, 16-0, but because they lost the Super Bowl, they are not in the discussion as Greatest Team Ever.

The ‘95-96 Bulls swept two series, won the other in five games and went up 3-0 in the NBA Finals before winning in six.

So the Warriors may need to at least equal Chicago’s championship postseason of 16-3 before their season will be universally declared as Greatest of All Time.


Click here for the New York Post’s Brian Lewis reporting that a Popovich disciple, Spurs assistant Ettore Messina, is likely to be the next coach of the Brooklyn Nets.

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