In St. Louis, Jeff Gordon writes the MLB Cardinals are a "sloppy, underachieving team," and the roster "requires reconstruction." But at least the front office "hasn’t tried to con fans into thinking that everything is just fine." The Cardinals' lack of movement yesterday at the trade deadline "wasn’t a vote of confidence for the group." It "simply meant attractive opportunities didn’t arise in the trade market." The Cardinals "couldn’t make a deal just to win the news cycle" and "they couldn’t lose assets for public relations gains." But they "must make the team better" for '18 and beyond (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 8/1).
GET THE WORD OUT: In Orlando, Mike Bianchi wrote the Magic "need to do something -- anything -- to make star players in the NBA realize" the city is an "amazing place to be." Bianchi suggests a "marketing campaign that targets free agents throughout the league, much like VisitOrlando targets tourists." The Magic's new management team "obviously can’t sell the team’s roster or performance, which is why they must pull out all the stops and actually market themselves shamelessly." Bianchi: "I’m talking newspaper, TV and radio ads in every NBA market. I’m talking buying national advertising on ESPN, NBA TV, TNT and all of the major sports websites" (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 7/30).
WINDY CITY MOVES: The WNBA Sky will return to downtown Chicago and the new Wintrust Arena next season after eight years in the suburbs, and in Chicago, Patricia Babcock McGraw notes some fans from the suburbs are "concerned about the longer commute back into the city for games." But Sky President & CEO Adam Fox "wants to assure fans that team officials are listening to concerns about the new building and are out to make the transition smooth and enjoyable." Fox: "We know it's a possibility that it will be a little more difficult for some folks to get [to Wintrust Arena], but we also know there are really great options for how to get down there. Given we play a majority of our games on the weekend, we think that will still give us the opportunity to get people down to that building" (Chicago DAILY HERALD, 7/30).