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Slap Shots and Hip Checks 5/2
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Boston Bruins NHL Playoffs Pittsburgh Penguins Sidney Crosby

 

Let's see, what  should I write about after such an uneventful week? That's hardly the case as we all know, but what you won't be reading here is a rant about Donald Sterling, our guys have all covered it and since I don't care about the bouncing orange ball let's get to the good stuff...where men are men and even play with a broken leg because they put TEAM above everything else, something you'll never say about the NBA and the prima donna's that play in it. All I will say is that in less than a week we've seen the story break, the world go ballistic and the NBA axing Sterling. Pretty unprecedented when you think about all this, a pro team owner removed, no trial, no evidence other than a tape recording of Sterling talking to his lover and not knowing it was being recorded. That's what I have a problem with, but since Sterling is a lawyer I'm sure he's not going away quietly, and we haven't come close to hearing the end of this story yet. 

The NHL playoffs are now in round two, there have been great games in every series. I kept asking Beeze when NY was going to finish off the Flyers, it took seven games but I knew the Flyers wouldn't beat Lundqvist in game seven in the Garden...and they didn't! The rangers now move on to play Sindy Crosby and the Pittsburgh Whiners. The Pens got by the Blue Jackets, but while doing so Marc Andre Fleury has hardly been the reliable backstop he's been in past seasons, giving up 18 goals in six games with 2 of them going to OT. Don't be surprised if the Rangers knock the Pens out, the big mismatch here is goaltending, Fleury is no Lundqvist. Also, Crosby and Malkin combined for 3 goals and 10 assists in that series, but what you're not really hearing much is that Crosby didn't have any goals, and the three Malkin got came off a hat trick. Crosby has certainly cooled off and gone into a scoring drought and this has been ongoing since he returned from Sochi. He was lighting the lamp before that, but the last 3 weeks of the season he wasn't playing up to snuff, he also went into a 5 game stretch not notching a goal. I expect the Rangers to give the Pens a real physical game, something they don't play unless you call diving and instigating being physical. 

The Minnesota Wild...wow, did they turn it on after the break and grab one of the last two spots in the West only to be a spoiler or what? I had Colorado in that series, but you still have to tip your hat to the job that Patrick Roy has done with this team and they're only going to get better...look for big things from the Avs next season. The Wild now take on the Blackhawks, this is the best of the two series in the West, Anaheim hasn't got a prayer against the Kings, and if you don't believe me just watch the rerun of that game seven against San Jose (or ask B.O.B.) and then get back to me if you think the Ducks can overtake LA. The Wild will give the Blackhawks a series, I believe they were 3-1-1 against Chicago this season...not too shabby against the defending champs eh? What would be just great is to see the Wild shutout the Blackhawks in Chi-Town if for no other reason than to just not hear that fuckin' song they play. I mute the TV every time they score when I'm watching...I can't stand that shit!

As I write this the Bruins and Canadiens are tied. no matter how this turns out I'm not worried. One thing I know about these two teams is they play each other with incredible intensity and elevate their games to a different level, and since it's the playoffs that level will be off the charts. I'm saying Boston in six, but I won't be surprised if it went seven either. Boston is pretty healthy all the way around and they're not over rested, which we tend to see hurt teams that are idle, and judging from the way this game is being played they haven't lost a beat. This will be the best the East has to offer, it's certainly one of the more anticipated games since it's a HUGE rivalry and there's a genuine andshared hatred for each other....doesn't get better than this, so if you're looking for a game that's going to give you everything...this is the series to watch. 

I saw a great blog on Facebook yesterday and I tagged some of you with it. It was written by a guy named Jim Parker, a Bruins fan and it's a 5 minute read on the "hatred" Boston and their fans have for the Canadiens and their fans. It's hilarious, but incredibly true...at least I think it is. Check it out! http://bruinsfansinc.wordpress.com/2014/04/30/why-i-hate-the-canadiens/

The Vancouver Canucks fired one year coach John Tortorella today. I saw this coming, and never imagined in a million years he'd even coach this franchise, but there he was, behind the bench coaching some of the biggest divers in hockey. Torts demands 100% from his players, he's no nonsense, no sense of humor, he requires his players to fall down to block shots constantly, something the Canucks just are not about at all. I'm sure Torts personality, arguments with media and coaches didn't make him a real prize in the city that burned itself down after they lost the Cup to Boston...but this season the Canucks went from a playoff team to sitting home and watching because they went in the wrong direction. I'm wondering, did the Sedin's or any of the other players get with the folks in the front office to get him ousted? I wouldn't be shocked by that revelation at all. Tortorella will get a job, no doubt about it. I'm just waiting for the stories to start coming out from what brought this sudden ousting on...one year and you expect miracles? It's not a coaching problem in Vancouver, it's a player problem. Any real fan of hockey has seen enough of this team to know it's long overdue to be broken up and rebuilt, starting with those two freaks of nature, the Sedins. Yeah, good luck with all that!

And lastly, I can't help but say this: DON'T PANIC RED SOX NATION!!! I must have read about twenty articles in the last week or so about the start the Sox have had. They're in 3rd place, 3 games out after 29 games and you're panicking? Or feel the need to stir the masses with this ridiculous garbage when the season isn't even barely a month old? Really? This is the best you've got? Look, there's 162 games to play, anything can happen in that amount of time and if come the beginning of September they're only 3 games out I'd like their chances to get into the post season. So for now people of Boston, steer that energy you're wasting away from Fenway and point it towards the Garden and Bell Centre and give the Bruins the support they deserve on this mission, I promise when hockey is over baseball will still be here, and you'll have a whole summer to hum and holler over the Sox and where they're at! Remember, it could be worse...this guy could still be around.

Enjoy the games, have a great weekend and please be sure to stop by next door and check out Hal's post, he always brings it!

Q.o.t.D 4/28 Tags: Donald Sterling LA Clippers NBA

What do you think the NBA should do to Donald Sterling? Make him resign and give up ownership or suspend him from team operations?

Slapshots and Hip Checks 4/18
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Atlanta MLS Stanley Cup P;ayoffs MLB

 

Damn near forgot to write this post then just as I nodded off I jumped up and said to myself...ahh fuck, it's Thursday and I need to write a post...now what, cuz I got nothin'!! 

Let's see what I can rant about...MLB players, let's start with these guys. I don't know about any of the other Gabber's in fantasy baseball, but my two teams (I have one in Jeff's league too) are walking MASH units, and this is exactly how my teams started last season too. Mark Texiera...this frickin' douche bag lands right back where he was last year about his time...the DL. And how much are the Spankees paying this Workman's Comp claim? He's obviously been schooled well in this organization from their previous losers that were paid astro-bucks only to  hang out at practice or sit in the clubhouse to watch games. Does Carl Pavano ring a bell? Or A-Roid? Both of these guys were paid huge ducats and both found their way to the DL for tons of missed games. So what is it with baseball players and their inability to be ready for the season? I mean baseball isn't a contact sport, there's no one being checked into boards, no one getting a slap shot to the testes, there's no tackling, so what's the deal? Is spring training too short? Do most of these guys do nothing in the offseason? It has to have something to do with not being properly prepared...how else do you explain all these DL's and day to days for hamstrings, pulled muscles etc? I would think this topic has come up within clubs who experience these issues...but is it on the team or the player to be ready for the start of the season? Burning questions, but it's not hard to notice looking around the leagues I'm in that I'm  not the only one dealing with it. Talk amongst yourselves...discuss. 

 

The NHL playoffs are in round 1, Boston faces off against Detroit in Boston for game one tomorrow night and I'm all fired up about it. No, not worried about the season series between the two, two of those four games were decided by one point, Boston won one and had a lousy game against the Wings at the start of the season...this is the playoffs, it's a whole new season and what happened over the last 82 games was just a precursor to get to season two. Again, if you've never spent any time watching playoff hockey you're really missing the very best the game has to offer...you're not going to see better games, heated competition and guys playing until their legs fall off to win that double OT like you would in any other sport. Certainly not the NBA...that's for sure. Check it out, you won't be disappointed!

Yesterday, here in Atlanta it was announced that an MLS team would begin playing games here in 2017...Arthur Blank is behind this. Now I have nothing against AB...I really don't, but this is a bit short-sighted on his part. In my seven years here I'm still trying to find how the existing teams are marketed...I really mean that. Go to NY or LA or even Boston, you see billboards galore, players in local TV commercials, everyone dressed in their gear, all that, but not here. First, this is college football country before anything else, then it's probably NASCAR and pro football, the Braves, even with their non-stop TV coverage can't sellout, and the Hawks...it's basketball, who cares? That's why I don't understand the logic to add a team from yet another sport after hockey failed miserably - TWICE, the Braves lacked any support from the city of Atlanta to build a new stadium (keep in mind, the one they're in now was built all the way back in 1996 for the Olympics, so it's only natural that place would be in dire need of replacement) so they're building in Cobb County/Marietta and they'll be opening for the 2017 season. They can't keep a hockey team, they're moving the MLB team out of town and it appears Blank's logic seems to be something has to replace what's left. Sorry Arthur, it's not going to work and this team will be heading for (if you ask DVT) Winnipeg right behind the Thrashers/Jets. If the people of Atlanta don't understand hockey and this is a football town what makes him think soccer has any chance at all? Really not seeing it, and from what I'm hearing so far it's got as much support as the Ferris Wheel they built downtown, (Arthur Blank was a huge advocate for this too) ... yeah, a fuckin' Ferris Wheel. Are you all getting that this town seems to put the cart before the horse? It's not like the roads didn't need repair, the highways around Atlanta aren't too fucked up and money couldn't be spent to rectify what amounts to a ride along the gauntlet each trip to the city, but we got a Ferris Wheel and you too can ride it for $25 for 15 minutes after you pay $20 across the street to park. Maybe that's where all the money is coming from to support the Falcons new stadium and this MLS team that has no business being here. Keep in mind, you heard it here first...this team... GONE by 2020. 

Have a great weekend! 

Slapshots and Hipchecks 4/4
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Red Sox Opening Day DeSean Jackson David Ortiz Chris Johnson

 

Sorry about posting late Gabber's...last night I had a board meeting for our HOA and what was supposed to be a brief, maybe 30 minute coverage of budget items turned into 2 hours of bullshit, followed by us unwinding on the deck while it was still in the 70's drinking some Jamaican Rum...we all know what happened after that. 

First, do we think we've had enough coverage of David Ortiz taking a selfie with the President yet? Personally I thought it was a pretty funny moment...but then the rumors started flying that it was actually a promo...but in all the articles I read none of them had quoted Ortiz, who said it wasn't. Time to move on media...you've beaten the shit out of this story too, but what else is new? At least it started to move the Malaysian flight off the radar (pun intended) for a few hours...I feel for the families of this tragedy, I really do, but does anyone in this world really believe after all this time the plane will be found? From all appearances the folks who are coordinating the search efforts seem to have no clue to where to begin looking. All I want to know is - How the fuck do you lose a plane? 

So, I understand it's baseball season now...is that correct? Not quite in baseball mode with hockey gearing up for season 2 in a week or so. The Red Sox have opening day this afternoon, and in front of the Brewers they'll get their WS series rings and I'll be tuning in for that. As you see from the above photo, the World Series rings are a thing of beauty. I'm sure that this ceremony will be pretty emotional since a lot of the Marathon bombing victims will be in attendance. I don't know what the Sox have in store for the festivities beyond that, but I'm sure it will be handled with exceptional grace and class! 

 

The other day I was talking to a neighbor about football, he's a Redskin fan and when I said I wasn't surprised the Skins signed DeSean Jackson and they'll probably regret it because one, he's a tool, and another, he can't stay healthy long enough to make a true impact...just the kind of guy Daniel Snyder would hire and guarantee that he gets $16 million guaranteed. He asked me why all the hate for his beloved Skins...I merely [pointed out that since Snyder has taken the helm of the Skins what have they done other than do what the Cowboys do, overpay for guys who turn out to be busts, Dallas seems to do more of the - We'd rather they look good doing it than being good at it...where as Washington simply throws money at every position with no regard for the fact most of the guys they sign were passed over for one reason or another. Jackson has the talent and ability to be a great receiver, and he's shown flashes of brilliance, but that's clearly been overshadowed by his injury issues. Bottom line, Jackson laughs all the way to the bank and he's not going to amount to much in the Beltway. Snyder may think he's got the right guy for RG III to throw too now, but he's forgotten one important fact...they guy has to be on the field to catch the ball.

Just saw on the ticker that Chris Johnson WILL be released today by the Titans. Here's another example of a guy who performed well enough to get huge deal then turned into a bust. He had no rush for over 30 yards last season...when I read that compared to what he had done prior to the contract he signed in 2011 I wasn't shocked. I call this the Shaun Alexander syndrome. Alexander plays every game each season until he signed his new deal for $63 million with $15 million guaranteed, and $15 million the first season of the deal and never played a full season again, and never rushed for more than 800 yards either. Yeah....fuck you pay me, now I'll watch my bank account get larger while my stats go down the toilet...but I got paid and that's all that matters. Again...I'm for base salaries and incentive filled contracts. You know, like how it works in the real world...you show up and perform you get paid, you fuck up, see ya later. So what becomes of Johnson now? Who take a chance on this guy? Hey Snyder, hey Jerry Jones....break out the checkbooks!

That's all I've got today...and again, m apologies for being late and brief...Have a great weekend!!!

2014 YGS Bracket Challenge
Category: NCAA
Tags: NCAA Bracket challenge. College basketball

We have the 2014 YGS Bracket Challenge started. If you'd like to enter just signup below and I'll send you out an invite...if you haven't already received one...check your email...about 10 or so went out already to those I thought might pay. 

Sully

 

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