Saturday, April 9, 2016

Not So Awesome Old Song of the Week: "The NeverEnding Story" by Limahl

I have this Spotify ad to thank for putting The NeverEnding Story theme song back in my head:

That's the original actor who played Atreyu in the 1984 film, along with the real voice of Falkor, together again 32 years later.

I was a big fan of the song as an eight-year-old (and an even bigger fan of the movie), but I'm not sure it stands the test of time very well--or has any appeal to people other than children, for that matter.

Wikipedia fact: Limahl is an anagram for Hamill, the singer's actual last name.

Awesome Old Song/Movie Clip of the Week: David Bowie's "Magic Dance" from Labyrinth

Friday, April 8, 2016

Star Wars began with episodes 4-6, followed by 1-3, then back to 7, now we get a sort of 3-and-a-half?

Here's the trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which is scheduled to open December 16:

It takes place shortly before the original Star Wars with the plot centered around the rebels stealing the plans for the first Death Star.  But, it's also it's own separate spinoff storyline (sort of) with different characters.  The regular Episode 8 is on track to come out in 2017.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

The 1995-96 Chicago Bulls' target was only 70 wins, otherwise they might've won more than 72

Something worth noting if the Golden State Warriors eclipse or tie the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls' NBA record of 72 wins:

Twenty years ago, all the talk was whether or not the Bulls could get to 70.  At the time, the 1971-72 Lakers owned the best season ever at 69-13.  Winning 71, 72 or 73 games was irrelevant to Chicago.  The Bulls were 66-8 when they dropped their first home contest of the season, 98-97 to the Charlotte Hornets.  At that point, they only needed to finish 4-3 the rest of the way to make history.  Chicago eclipsed the old mark and got to 71-9 before it lost again (also by one point at home), 100-99 to the Indiana Pacers.  I'm guessing there's no way Michael Jordan would've let that one get away if it mattered to him.

Sidebar--I wonder how interested Steve Kerr is in breaking the record he was a part of?

-Do the Spurs care enough about the 41-0 home record to make things difficult for the Warriors?
-The Spurs might go undefeated at home and not win the championship
-Klay Thompson will hit more 3-pointers this season than anyone besides his teammate Steph Curry ever has
-No one has ever been better at basketball than Steph Curry is right now

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Thoughts on Celtics' upset of Warriors, Marcus Smart's future, playoff opponents and NBA awards predictions

I recently participated in a Celtics roundtable discussion for CLNS Radio, a site I used to write for.  Here are the questions and my responses:

1. Did Friday’s win against Golden State change your opinion of the Celtics?

Honestly, no. This may sound hard to believe, but I actually though the C's had a decent chance to win that one. Their guards match up perfectly with the Warriors and Boston knew it could hang following the double-OT game in December. I do think the confidence the Celtics gained from the victory will be huge down the stretch and in the playoff though.

2. Out of the three likeliest first round opponents (Heat, Hawks, and Hornets), which team poses the biggest threat to the Celtics’ chances?

The Hawks are the team that scares me the most. With the exception of two eight-point losses in Toronto and a pair of OT defeats at the hands of Golden State and Cleveland, Atlanta is 14-1 since late February (before Tuesday's action) against the rest of the league. Having said that, I'll take home court advantage first and the right opponent second. There's a reason all four teams have basically the same record.

3. What are your thoughts on Marcus Smart moving forward? Is he someone the team can build around?

I don't think Marcus is a guy you can successfully build around--he's never going to be an elite scorer. However, he's definitely someone you can build with. I'm not worried about his shooting. He's working hard on it and he just turned 22 years old, it'll come. Whether or not he's a point guard, I'm not so sure. His game is more suited for being a small forward, which he might be able to pull off the way the league is trending.

4. Provide a few end of the year award winners…

Curry. There's no reasonable alternative. Isaiah should get a couple votes though.

Rookie of the Year?
It's Karl-Anthony Towns, but Devin Booker has made a nice run down the stretch.
Defensive Player of the Year?
Hassan Whiteside. He's averaging 3.7 blocks per game, nearly 1.5 more than anybody else.

Sixth Man of the Year?
Enes Kanter. 12.4 points and 7.9 rebounds in a very efficient 20.6 minutes per game off the bench for OKC. He's also 10th in the league in PER.

Most Improved Player?
Jae Crowder might have a shot if his scoring average was a little higher, but CJ McCollum has it locked up. He's posting nearly 14 more points per game than he did last year.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

I hate (real definition) the expression "hater" (modern excepted definition)

This is what you get when you google the word "hater."  The first definition is what it means, the second widely excepted informal definition is stupid.  People should be able to argue, contradict, point out logical flaws in, disagree with, or just show a general level of opposition to something without any form of the word "hate" being part of the equation.

Just because someone thinks whatever your thing is is slightly less than perfect does not mean he/she "hates" it.  Can't we get a less extreme word to signify this?  Cynic, doubter, skeptic, etc.  They all work just fine.  The world isn't black and what, we're allowed to still describe things from a middle ground.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Memo to MLB: There's an easy way to avoid snow for Opening Day

As I write this, there's roughly two hours to go before the Red Sox begin their 2016 season.  It's also snowing like crazy in Boston:

Luckily, the Red Sox are out of town.  Unfortunately, they're in Cleveland instead.  Here's what's going on there:

Sweet.  That "RealFeel" 16 degrees number at the bottom sounds particularly awesome.

When is MLB going to learn?  Opening Day should never happen in cold-weather cities, and there's a very easy way to fix that.  Play the first two weeks of the season in the 15 of 30 ballparks that aren't crossed out in red:

Everywhere else is either not cold (with the possible exception of St. Louis, but hey, it's still a lot better than the northeast) or has a roof.  Problem solved.

The Red Sox-Indians game was postponed while I was writing this blog.  How fitting.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Awesome Old Song of the Week: "Lullaby" by Shawn Mullins

I never understood why Shawn Mullins decided to call his 1998 hit Lullaby instead of "Rockaby."  Not only is that the line from the chorus, I'm guessing a different title would've also made a large number of people a lot more open-minded to liking it.

Here's a cool side note about the video: The actress, Dominique Swain, is the girl who played John Travolta's daughter in 1997's Face/Off (clip below).

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