Saturday, October 4, 2014

Some new things I've been working on

I recently began writing for a site called, which is part of the FanSided blog network owned by Sports Illustrated.  My first two articles are on the new young and athletic Minnesota Timberwolves, and whether or not Paul Pierce is really pleased with his decision to join the Washington Wizards:

HoopsHabit pays me a very very small amount of money for every page view, so go read them!

A Bleacher Report article I wrote on Evan Turner's contract with the Celtics recently appeared on the B/R NBA front page, just below former ESPN analyst Ric Bucher.

I'll also be live blogging the Baltimore Orioles vs. Detroit Tigers ALDS Game 4 for Bleacher Report on Monday, unless the Orioles sweep and the series ends Sunday.  More on that in the future...

Friday, October 3, 2014

What is this 'Sqor Sports' Twitter-Instagram thing for athletes that all the Celtics are now using?

The other day I came across this tweet from Brian Scalabrine:

Besides badly wanting to know what will happen on October 21, I also found myself wondering "What is"  Then last night I noticed this tweet from Kelly Olynyk:

That freshman year haircut is totally sweet, and there's that thing again.  Soon after I realized Marcus Smart has been sending out tweets like this for a little over a week now:

As best as I can figure Sqor Sports is sort of a cross between Twitter and Instagram designed specifically for pro athletes.  Is anybody using this?  What does it do?  And why are all these Celtics suddenly tweeting it all over the place?  I only spent a few minutes on the site, and I can't really figure out why someone would want to use it instead of Twitter.

However, for the record, before I got all tweeted up I remember saying once "I don't understand why anybody would use Twitter since it's just like Facebook status updates."  Clearly I was way off on that one, so is Sqor Sports going to be huge?  We're about ready for the next big social network thing anyway...

Friendster < Myspace < Facebook < Twitter < Google+ ?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Postponing the Premature Patriots Panic

My initial reaction to the Patriots getting obliterated 41-14 by the Chiefs on Monday night was not what I might have expected it to be:

Yes, it is possible that for the first time in 14 seasons the New England Patriots are not a good football team.  But it's also quite likely that the situation is not as dire as it seems.  At 2-2, the Pats are exactly zero games out of first place in the AFC East.

New England has won the division with records of 12-4, 12-4 and 13-3 in each of the past three seasons, but 9-7 would've gotten the job done every time.  Over the last nine years the Patriots have won at least 10 games in every season, but they have no Super Bowl championships to show for it.  Maybe a bit of a struggle along the way is exactly what they need?

Take a look at four of the past seven Super Bowl winners:

2007 - The Giants began the year 0-2 after a 35-13 home drubbing at the hands of the Packers.
2010 - Green Bay opened the season 3-3 following a pair of back-to-back OT losses to Washington and Miami.
2011 - At one point the Giants lost four in a row, including a 49-24 mauling in New Orleans, dropping their record to 6-6.
2012 - After a 9-2, start the Ravens dropped four of their last five regular season games to limp into the playoffs as a Wild Card team.

I will say one thing though, New England's schedule scares me--a lot.  Here are their remaining games outside of the division: Cincinnati, Chicago, Denver, at Indianapolis, Detroit, Green Bay and at San Diego.  Ugh.  Maybe 9-7 is a realistic best-case scenario for the Patriots.  But even if that's true, they still shouldn't be counted out.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Oakland A's choke makes their Yoenis Cespedes for Jon Lester trade look really, really bad

This is a little redundant if you read regularly, but now that the final numbers are in I wanted to revisit it one last time.  At the MLB trade deadline (July 31) the A's had baseball's best record, 66-41.  It surprised me that Oakland was willing to deal its biggest bat, Yoenis Cespedes, for Jon Lester, especially considering the A's already had the lowest starters' ERA in the American League.  I wrote "I think it could backfire big time."

Counting yesterday's Wild Card Game loss to Kansas City, Oakland went 22-34 after the trade.

Cespedes is still under contract for one more year, while Lester is about to head of town via free agency.  Here's the sum total of everything the A's got from Lester in return for their All-Star slugger: Eleven regular season starts (Oakland did win seven of them), and the worst playoff outing of his career, in which Lester uncharacteristically gave up 6 earned runs in 7.1 innings.

One play from last night's defeat perhaps sums up the disastrous final third of Oakland's season more than any other:

After blowing a 7-3 lead in the 8th inning, and a 8-7 lead already in the 12th inning, the A's we're facing the winning run on first base with one out.  The Royals had 6 steals in the game to that point, and when Christian Colon took off for second base the A's had already made the right decision to pitch out.

But somehow catcher Derek Norris (pictured with Lester) dropped the ball, Colon easily took second, and Oakland's season was over one batter later.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Evan Turner's contract with the Celtics is finally official, and I don't like it

For two months I've been waiting for the Celtics to officially sign Evan Turner:

Turner at the Celtics Media Day on Monday.
Yesterday it was finally announced; two years guaranteed for a total of $6.7 million.  I don't understand why the Celtics would do this.  Looking ahead to next year, Boston was only on the books for roughly $32.2 million in salary for the 2015-16 season ($39.2 mil if they likely picked up the team options on Jared Sullinger, Kelly Olynyk and Tyler Zeller).  Now they're on the hook to pay Turner an additional $3.4 million that season as well.

Besides the numerous future draft picks, Boston's best asset going forward is its enormous amount of salary cap room next year.  Now that's a little bit smaller.  What if Turner's $3.4 million ends up being the difference on whether or not the C's can re-sign Rajon Rondo and add an additional big-time free agent as well (or two stars if Rondo goes elsewhere)?

It doesn't make sense.  The Celtics aren't going to be good this year, so why waste cap room on a mediocre player?  I really wish they'd just held onto Chris Johnson instead (who they had at roughly one million per year for the next three seasons and could be cut at any time).

Unless Danny Ainge believes his club will be a contender next season and Turner is going to be a big part of that, what is the point of having him here?  And if that's the case--wow.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Now that Derek Jeter has retired, guess which New York Yankee has the most World Series rings?

After what felt like hours of painstakingly slow letter flipping Wheel of Fortune style on the Green Monster, followed by a ridiculous rendition of Aretha Franklin's Respect (here's a video of the ceremony at Fenway Park yesterday that nobody should ever watch), Derek Jeter's seven-month (too long?) retirement road show has finally come to an end.

With #2 officially done for good, which current Yankee has won the most World Series championships?

There is now only one player on New York's roster with multiple rings--and it's this guy:

2007.  2013.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Awesome Old Song of the Week: "Tom's Diner" by Suzanne Vega (featuring college football and Seinfeld)

A few weeks ago when this ESPN Boston College vs USC football commercial came on, I though to myself "I know that song!"  They've since used it in other game promos as well:

This version is by Fall Out Boy, and it's called Centuries.  But if you listen to that "Dih dih dih-dih dih dih dih--dih" at the beginning, you know it's really Suzanne Vega's Tom's Diner:

Two cool things I just learned about this song: One, she originally released it in 1984, but it was the 1990 remix version that became popular.  And two, the diner Vega is singing about is the same one featured in Seinfeld, on the corner of Broadway and 112th Street in New York City.

If Carrie Bradshaw ever stopped by there on Sex and the City, I doubt they'd be so tolerant of her fake parsley allergy.

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