Christmas Eve is tomorrow night, and we're in a giving mood. So we're passing on this list to Santa Claus so that he can add these to his bags of gifts to drop off to these Houston sports figures.
JEFF BAGWELL: You're the best player in Houston Astros history. So you're getting inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Yeah, I know, the voting's not done until the end of the month, and the actual announcement won't be made until next month, but why wait? You're in. Congratulations.
JIM CRANE: You purchased a baseball team that had been stripped bare of usable parts by the previous owner. Yet you've assembled a group of smart guys who have put together a roster with some of the best young players in baseball. Your team made the playoffs two years ago, and contended for most of this past year. So in turn, you're getting sold-out crowds for every game as Houston fans show that results really do matter.
DRAYTON MCLANE: You get a lump of coal. As if stripping bare and nearly destroying the Astros weren't enough, you've been throwing your weight around in an attempt to restore the reputation of Art Briles.
HOUSTON COUGARS FOOTBALL: You deserve a little stability. There's been the constant coaching turnover as guys soar onward and upward. There's been the actual conference change several years ago, and then this past year, which saw the Big 12 promise expansion, then shut the door at the last second, and the turmoil surrounding Tom Herman. So let's hope Major Applewhite sticks around and takes you to lots of conference titles and major bowl games.
HOUSTON HOCKEY FANS: I know that you exist. If there were any justice, Houston would have a major NHL rivalry with the Dallas Stars. Or at least an AHL squad on par with the Aeros. So Les Alexander will be visited by three ghosts who will remind him he got Toyota Center built by saying it can also be used for hockey. And seeing how quickly Las Vegas sold season tickets for its new NHL team, he'll realize all of the cash he's missing out on and buy a team like the Carolina Hurricane or the Florida Panthers and move it to Houston.
BOB MCNAIR: A Super Bowl at your home stadium featuring the Oakland Raiders so that you can see what could have been if the geniuses you employ had not passed on Derek Carr, who by the way is still a lot cheaper than Brock Osweiler.
JEFF LUHNOW: So you whiffed on Chris Sale. So it appears Jose Quintana might go elsewhere. And Dallas Keuchel is still recovering from his injury that sidelined him at the end of last season, and Lance McCullers is still a risk for a major injury every time he steps on the mound. Not to worry, the Tampa Bay Rays are still apparently willing to trade Chris Archer, so let's make that happen so that the Astros can have an excellent starting rotation.
JOSH REDDICK AND GEORGE SPRINGER: You both get a season of no injuries.
TSU BASKETBALL: Come January, you actually get to play some games at your home arena.
UH AND RICE BASKETBALL: Since you are both fun teams to watch, how about some people showing up to watch you play some games — though, UH, it might help out Santa if you scheduled a few out-of-conference home games that people might actually care about watching.
NRG STADIUM: Some people to figure out how to open up that expensive retractable roof the taxpayers paid for yet which never seems to open.
CARLOS BELTRAN: Bo boos from Houston fans mad about your leaving the Astros a decade ago.
BILL O’BRIEN: Old Joe Montana and John Elway game tapes for you to watch over and over and over so that maybe you’ll start to get a clue in regards to clock management.
LES ALEXANDER: A return of the Rockets to the Summit so that the fans who buy seats in the lower levels actually have to watch the games from those seats and not up in the bars and suites of Toyota Center.
HOUSTON ROCKETS: An entire new set of uniforms featuring the classic Rockets colors of red, mustard and white with a return to the old logo. All uniforms with black, red, gray and silver will be destroyed.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.