Predictions are like podcasts; it seems like everybody has one. But I’m no ordinary predictor/podcaster. In August, I predicted that the Steelers would go 12-4 and that Maurkice Pouncey would not get injured. As long as the Browns didn’t somehow trip them up this past Sunday, the Steelers will finish 11-5, and Pouncey is still upright heading into the playoffs, so there’s a little credibility. With that in mind, here are thoughts on 2017. Some of these predictions are easy and obvious, while others are admittedly a stretch. Since everybody hated 2016 so much, here are some prognostications that hint that 2017 will be much better.
Paul Spadafora gets arrested again. I feel like the limb’s pretty secure on this one. Spaddy will lose a re-match against the 65-year-old woman he ALLEGEDLY beat up last year. The lady has been training for the fight while Spadafora has been bogged down in court for ALLEGEDLY stabbing his brother last month.
The Penguins win the Stanley Cup again. History repeats itself, and the Pens go back to the Stanley Cup finals. They did it in 1991 and 1992, and again in 2008 and 2009. They will beat Boston, Washington and Columbus along the way. The parade even draws Capitals, Sabres and Blue Jackets fans who make the drive just to see what the Cup looks like.
The Flyers vs. Penguins Heinz Field game devolves into a huge fight in the stands. It will have nothing to do with hockey. It will just be fans of both teams arguing over pop vs. soda; French fries vs. potato chips on a sandwich; Sheetz vs. Wawa; Christina Aguilera vs. Pink; buggy vs. cart; and how to pronounce the word “water.”
Jameson Taillon emerges as the pitcher everyone hoped he would be. Taillon starts the year 15-7, and the Pirates immediately start listening to trade offers for him.
Former Woodland Hills star Jason Taylor is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Fans are upset as Hines Ward falls short, but he’ll make it in 2018. For the 53rd time in 54 years, no Cincinnati Bengals make the cut.
PPG Paints Arena sells its naming rights to Giant Eagle. Pens fans rush to Twitter to be the first person to call the newly named arena “The Iggleloo.”
Jaromir Jagr goes top-shelf on Marc-André Fleury to become just the second player in NHL history to amass 2,000 career points. Boos reign down, not just on Jagr, but on Fleury as well.
The Pirate Pierogies are rocked by scandals. After six straight wins, Potato Pete admits to using performance-enhancing olive oil. Oliver Onion has his own scandal involving an affair with the Bratwurst from the Milwaukee Brewers’ racing mascots.
The Cleveland Browns get the first pick in the NFL draft and he immediately sucks. The No. 1 overall pick gets injured at training camp, quits football and becomes roommates with Johnny Manziel.
Chicago Cubs fans become even more obnoxious as they flood into Pittsburgh for a weekend series. Everybody can get lucky once in 108 years, but Cubs fans will be bragging about last year until 2124.
After another 8-4 regular season, Pitt disappoints in a bowl game. This time it’s a 30-28 loss to Kentucky in the Taxslayer Bowl. It will be worse than 2016 because Pitt fans who traveled to this year’s bowl game at least got to experience the culture of New York City. They find a lot less of it in Jacksonville.
Pitt basketball’s Jamel Artis is drafted in the second round of the NBA draft by the New Orleans Pelicans. Pitt hoops fans celebrate, but a survey later reveals that before the draft, 68 percent of the fans had no idea the New Orleans Pelicans were a real team.
The Cincinnati Bengals pass on Pitt running back James Conner. In the fourth round of the draft, they find Conner’s lack of a criminal record would make him an outcast on the team.
Antonio Brown announces another name change. This time he wants to be called Jim Brown just to tick off people in Cleveland.
The Pittsburgh Thunderbirds defeat their rivals, the Madison Radicals, in Ultimate Disc action. The win goes unnoticed by social media because another celebrity nobody cared about died. RIP, guy that was on Herman’s Head.
Pirates announcer Greg Brown misses a game in the booth after doctors diagnose him with exhaustion. Brown faints after the excitement of back-to-back trip-trip-triples by John Jaso and Chris Stewart.
Finally, in a shocking turn of events, Steelers wide receiver Martavis Bryant passes a drug test! However, he runs out of steam by week 12 because he’s never played a full season before.