Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Welcome Back Wizards

The NBA season has officially started, and for those who haven't read anything i've ever written, I find this to be about as exciting as going to see fireworks on acid (which I'm just natural assuming is awesome). Not only that, but my boy Gilbert Arenas decided he wasn't going to mess around and helped the Wizards kick the season off with a big win over the Dallas Mavericks.

The Wizards had several questions going into this game and answered every one of them. Besides the health of Gil's knee, people wanted to see who would take over for Jamison, who will miss the first month of the season, as well as whether or not Andray Blatche will be that much better. All of these questions were answered in the second quarter when Blatche switched into a gear we haven't seen before.

Blatche has worked significantly harder this offseason and all of us fans were waiting to see if it was translating. I'm not saying anything is for sure after one game, but this 20 point, nine rebound performance was a great sign.

It wasn't just Blatche that impressed though, Randy Foye made his new fans happy by repeatedly scorching the net in the fourth quarter to help ice the game. The bottom line is that the Wizards legitimately have eight players on the roster who can put up 20 on any night, so even if one is injured (like Jamison), or has an off day, this team still has amazing firepower.

The Dallas Mavericks are a 50+ win team and we just beat them in their house. Putting that into perspective, the Wizards won six road games all of last year. Comparing this team to that one isn't fair to anyone because if this team is as good as it just played, Cleveland and Boston better look out.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

God Must Hate The Clippers

For decades, the Los Angeles Clippers have been not just one of the worst franchises in basketball, but in all of sports. They have only had two winning seasons and three playoff appearances since they moved to LA in 1984. Now, as a team that might have contended for a playoff spot, they lose their star forward and number one draft pick in Blake Griffin.

In seven games this preseason, Griffin showed that he 'is who we thought he was' (Denny Green will always make me laugh); a freakish athlete who is one of the most ferocious rebounders you will see. Not only that, but he had a pretty good core around him with Rasual Butler, Baron Davis, and Marcus Camby. Instead of getting to see that exciting team, Clipper fans will have the pleasure of seeing their star sitting on the bench for the first six weeks because of a stress fracture in his knee cap.

First of all, if you have ever been to LA, the whole city is purple and gold and the Clippers could never change that. The Lakers will always be the kings of the city whether they are led by Magic Johnson, Kobe, or whoever their next superstar is. Think about this, since 1984, when the Clippers were moving in, the Lakers have made it to the finals 11 times, winning it seven. The Clippers could win the next five NBA titles and would still be seen as the team that plays in the Lakers arena when they aren't using it. In fact, if the Clippers were to go on that run, the LA Times would be focusing on why the Lakers haven't been to an NBA Finals in five years, and not the five NBA titles the other team just won.

I agree that sports fans are all about 'what have you done for me now,' but at some point, the tradition of some teams overrides that. Teams like the Celtics and the Yankees will always be the king in their city and if another team were to move into their city, they would be nothing more than the step-child no one loves. And yes, I am aware that New York has the Mets, but I am including them in the unloved children group.

The good news for the Clippers is that no one other than people in Los Angeles will even be able to see them, thus making it impossible to see what they will look like without Griffin. The bad new...everything else. They are looking at another sub-.500 year where no one in their city even cares because the Lakers are contenders for another O'Brian Trophy. Maybe Griffin can comeback around new years and at least give the team a little bit of flash while they don't make the playoffs.

Monday, October 26, 2009

One of the Best World Series' Money Can Buy

This years World Series is going to be great if you were never a fan of Cinderella stories. The series will feature two teams in the top ten in payroll with both spending over 113 million dollars on their team. That being said, lets break this down and see who possesses the advantage here.

Starting Pitching: Each team's starter is a borderline god, so CC Sabathia and Cliff Lee will be a great matchup that we could possibly see three times. After that though, things get interesting. The Phillies have Pedro, JA Happ, and a struggling Cole Hamels, where as, the Yankees don't really have a fourth starter. If they go with Chad Gaudin, he won't have a shot against the game four starter, who I'm guessing will be Happ. However, the bottom line is that the yankees first three starters (Sabathia, AJ Burnett, and Andy Pettite) will control the outcome of this series
Advantage: small to Yankees

Batting: I never thought I'd say this, but I think the Yankees aren't as dangerous as the Phillies here. I'm not saying they aren't great, but the Phil's have more weapons near the bottom of their lineup. I really like guys like Jason Worth and Carlos Ruiz to be key factors in this game. The Yankees middle is as treacherous as any though and if I'm Philadelphia, I'm doing what the Angels did and walk ARod whenever I can.
Advantage: very small to Phillies

Bullpen- With Joba, Phil Hughes, and Mariano Rivera in the Yankees 'pen, all a starter needs to do is get through six. Its one of the greatest trios in baseball right now. The Phillies though are suspect here; Brad Lidge has been good, but he hasn't been tested much nor has he faced a lineup like this.
Advantage: big to Yankees

Bench: Other than Matt Stairs, who you will only get one at-bat from a game, the Phillies don't have the depth you would expect from a NL team. On the other side, The Yanks have lots of depth in Rod Gardner, Jerry Hairston, and Jose Molina, something that could come in handy.
Advantage: Yankees

Coaching: Joe Girardi tried to over-manage in the ALCS and it resulted in the series lasting longer than it should have. Jerry Manual has been here before and knows exactly what to do. If the Phillies are going to win this, they will need some great decisions by Manuel on who to use in the bullpen
Advantage: Phillies

I really wanted to not pick New York because they are everything that is evil in this world, but they are just too good. The Phillies are a mediocre team at home which will hurt them, and even though they are the best road team in the MLB, it will be different in New York. My prediction is that the Yankkes will win in six games, with Mark Texiera (the godless asshole) getting the MVP.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday Notes

There isn't one thing that I want to focus on, so I'll give you a buffet of sorts.

-It was absolutely wonderful to watch football today without it being ruined by the Redskins. I have come to see watching pro football as a chore recently because, well, watching the 'Skins play is just painful.

-I understand its hard to predict how bad teams are going to be, but this is the second time in three years that the NFL has sent a winless team (Miami in 2007) to London to play a powerhouse. Tampa Bay got to travel over the Atlantic Ocean to get thrashed by what appears to be a completely healthy Tom Brady.

-I bet it felt good for Cedric Benson to run all over the team that labeled him a bust and convinced everyone he was so bad, that he had to sign with the Bengals. Lookingback on that draft, he was better than both Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams.
-My god does Carolina suck. Buffalo could only muster 3 points against the Browns, but put up 20 big ones against the Panthers? Dude.

-It was announced today that Mark McGwire is going to be St. Louis' hitting coach next year for Tony La Russa. La Russa has been trying to convince the Big Mac to take this job for five years and I'm trying to figure out why. The guy is a career .263 hitter and had one of the most uppercut swings in baseball. Now, if he signed him to help the team acquire "herbal supplements," I'd understand that.

-Pedro Martinez came out publicly and said if the Yankees make it to the World Series, he wants game 2. I say I hate Pedro because my brother loves him, but he is one of the most clutch pitchers in the game and it would be stupid to give it to someone else. Hamels has been a bum, and Pedro has pitched gems in New York many times.

-When the Nationals fired Manny Acta I told everyone that it wasn't his fault and that he would find somewhere else to manage. Well, I was right because he was signed by the Indians today. It will be interesting to see how he does because even though Cleveland sucks, so does everyone else in the AL Central.

-The referee strike is over even though no one cared to begin with. I'm pretty sure the only thing they won in the strike was that the NBA now has to pay for their whistles. Honestly, what made them think they had any leverage?

-Antawn Jamison will be out for the first 3-5 weeks of the season. Why does everyone get injured as soon as they come to DC. Did you know that Jamison had played in almost 350 consecutive games in a row before coming here? Andray Blatche better be ready to step up because I'm expecting us to get off to a good start.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The No Class Organization of the Redskins

At around 9 o'clock this morning, ESPN broke a shocking story that the Redskins are going to keep Jim Zorn as its head coach for the remainder of the season. This news was not only shocking to me as a fan who believes Zorn doesn't have what it takes to be a head coach, but as someone who just feels bad for the guy.

Zorn was initially hired to be our offensive coordinator and to call the plays; we finally gave him the job of head scapegoat (because that is the primary job of a head coach in D.C. these days) only when all other coaches laughed at us. He was an offensive mind from the very beginning and the Redskins knew that was what he brought to the table. Yet, here we are at 2-4 and we are stripping play calling-Zorns only real asset-away from him? What does he have to offer at this point?

It wasn't until a friend of Zorn, Steve Largent spoke up that I realized why Snyder took play calling from Zorn; he wanted Zorn to resign and thus void his contract. It had nothing to do with trying to jump start the was a ploy to save money. If it had anything to do with winning, he wouldn't have gotten Zorns replacement from a retirement home.

This is where I really wish I was kidding.

The Redskins "offensive consultant" Sherman Lewis was actually working in a retirement home as the person in charge of choosing ping pong balls for bingo. Yea, he was once a successful offensive "genius," but so was Steve Spurrier right? Seriously though, unless our plays are called "B 36" or "A 19," he isn't going to have any idea what play he's calling.

The bottom line is that I respect Zorn more that ever because he is still here. Not only has the whole city turned on him, but Snyder just destroyed every bit of self esteem he had, yet he still is willing to stick it out. The thing that I think is important here is that the reason he is staying is not because of money, its because he doesn't want to abandon his players in a horrible time like this. He is basically nailing himself to the cross so players like Campbell or the young guys that were thrust into a makeshift offensive-line don't have to deal with constant criticism. Zorn knows a young player can't function , let alone get better, when he is made out to be worthless.

I know I always say that organizations like the New York Giants or the Boston Red Sox would never do this because they have more class, but this is worst than not having class; it's a matter of not having respect for other people. In the last week, I have learned that not only is Dan Snyder a horrible owner, but he's just a horrible human being who will always think of money first. I honestly don't know how he sleeps.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Professional Refs/Umps are Retarded

Over the last couple of weeks, two of the biggest stories in the sporting world have been about the people that are supposed to be invisible: the refs. Instead of being in the background like they should be, they have been in the news because 1) the NBA refs went on strike, and 2) the refs (or they call themselves) in the MLB seem unable to make the simplest calls. Because of this, I am going to spend this entire post just verbally bashing both.

Let's first discuss the NBA referees going on strike. Do they not realize how bad they are? Like, I don't know what the qualification for being an NBA ref is, but it certainly doesn't have anything to do with calling a travel or carry, because they call so few of them, you'd think they didn't know what one was. I have refereed basketball for seven years now, so I am completely qualified in saying that I'm definitely better then everyone of them. In fact, they are so bad, that when I started training, the very first thing my trainer said was "don't look at the refs in the NBA because they are lazy and just terrible." After hearing that, does it sound like a group of people that will be missed if they were to go on strike. If Reagan was able to replace air-traffic controllers, refs have no hope. There is a reason people aren't bashing the replacement refs...they may suck, but not more than the originals.

MLB umpires truly take the cake though. How sad is it that umpires have been having their own press conferences to discuss the calls they blew? I wasn't ever a fan of instant replay in baseball because its already so slow, but now, I'm so for it because the umps are just ridiculously bad. Did you know that baseball video games have a feature that lets the digital umpires blow calls every once in a while so its more realistic? I'm not making that up.

The point of umpires and referees is to unbiasedly enforce the rules; they are supposed to be the eyes of the rule book if you will. There will always be some human error in the process, but not anything that would call attention to themselves. I shouldn't know the names of any of them, yet I do. If this trend continues, we could be just five years or so from robot officials.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wizards Game Last Night

The Wizards game was absolutely insane. With the game tied, Nick Young fouled Willie Green with one second left, giving Green two free throws. Now, that would normally be the end of things, had Green not missed one of his free throws and fouled Mike James at the buzzer. James made two of his three shots from the charity stripe and the game was over, sending a ton of ticked-off 76er fans home

The win isn't the thing I want to focus on because it is, after all, the preseason. What was telling for me though, is how we won. Despite not having Gilbert, and Mike Miller due to the flu, and Jamison because of his knee, the Wizards were still able to beat a quality opponent. They won with depth (six guys in double figures) and defense; two things the Wizards have never been known for.

I see this as a sign of great things to come. All of this preseason, we have been told how the depth of the team was a strength and it could possibly withstand a few injuries. However, against Atlanta, I saw a team that was just in over its head with out the same three players it was missing last night. After watching this game, I am starting to think that maybe the Hawks' game was just a dud, and not proof that we can't be competitive without Gil.

I know its just the preseason, but bare with me. Basketball is my favorite sport and I haven't watched much of it besides the playoffs because watching my team was borderline cruel and unusual punishment. Remember, a teams record in the preseason is indeed irrelevant, but how it plays isn't; and I'm excited with what I see.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

NBA Eastern Conference Preview

For years, people have talked about how much better the West than the East and since Jordan retired, they have been right. However, from top to bottom, the East is full of teams that are going to surprise people this year. If there is a team that is going to beat the Lakers, it will be from the East.

Cleveland Cavaliers- You will hear a lot of talk about whether LeBron will leave at the end of the season or not. Let me stop all of this-he's not going anywhere. LeBron might want to be in a bigger market, but competing for a ring is more important and he knows how close they are. With Shaq adding an inside force, there is no reason that the Cavs shouldn't be in the NBA Finals this year.

Boston Celtics- In the playoffs, Rajon Rondo really developed into a key contributor on the team. If he can be that player without the drama that he causes, that could be a huge factor in their success. I don't really like them adding Rasheed Wallace because I think his act is getting old and I don't know if he brings enough to the table to be worth it. That being said, if Garnett is healthy with Paul Pierce, they still have a ridiculously amount of talent.

Orlando Magic- There will be a lot of people saying that the Magic will be better with Vince Carter than with Hedo Turkoglu...they are wrong. Orlando was so good last year because they were a matchup nightmare. Having two 6'11" players that play on the perimeter was something no team could figure out how to play. Carter is still good, but doesn't create matchup problems. Howard and Nelson are good enough to get this team 50 wins or so, but not anything like last year.

Washington Wizards- I have them a little higher than most, but the depth the team has makes me think they could be back. Granted, Gilbert needs to be healthy and stay that way, but besides him, the Wizards can get through any injury. I think new coach Flip Saunders will turn Caron Butler into a Tayshaun Prince-like defender and have him not worry about scoring because trust me, this team will have no problems scoring.

Atlanta Hawks- Hawks' fans finally have a team that they can not be ashamed to root for. Coming off a season where they finished fourth in the conference and made some noise in the playoffs, Atlanta is even better. Young guys like Josh Smith, Al Horford, and Marvin Williams are a year older, and adding vets Jamal Crawford and Joe Smith will help the team mature faster.

Toronto Raptors- I was VERY high on this team last year for apparently no reaon because they sucked. However, I'm gonna still go on a limb and say they are looking good. Getting Turkoglu was a big boost for them because with him and Bargnani, the Raptors could pose the same matchup issues Orlando made last year.

Question Marks
Chicago Bulls- Derrick Rose is no longer a rookie and Luol Deng is healthy again; that by itself gets them into the playoffs. Not only do they have that, but with rookies Tau Gibson and James Johnson, this team will surprise teams.

Detroit Pistons- Joe Dumars is a great GM, but boy did he blow the Billups trade. I know it was mostly for cap space (that got them Ben Gordon), but it was a mistake. This team still has talent with Jason Maxiell and Prince, and Rodney Stuckey (my pick for most improved player) so plan on seeing them in the playoffs, but not for more than a week or so
Philadelphia 76ers- Year after year, want to say that this is the year Andre Iguodala breaks out and has a big year, so I have given up on that. Instead, I'll concede that he's just an above average player who people wanted to call A.I.

Mediocrity Deserves Applause Too
Miami Heat- If Dwayne Wade sees the same thing I do, there is no way he resigns here. The only other weapon on the team is an obviously troubled Michael Beasley and nothing else. Wade might be good enough to get Miami into the playoffs by himself, but there is just nothing else there.

Charlotte Bobcats- Michael Jordan is a worst at being a GM than he was at being a baseball player...and that's saying something. There is no superstar here, just a few good pieces that might be good if put around any legitimate point scorer.

Indiana Pacers- Danny Granger is by far the best player you have never heard of. He is probably going o score close t 30 points per game, but like Wade, he's got nothing around him. Until the Pacers help him out, he will continue to be "the best layer you've never heard of," which isn't a good title to have.

New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, and Milwaukee Bucks- I'm not even gonna talk about the Bucks because they actually might be in the NBDL, I don't know. Now, the Nets and the Knicks are this bad because they have been freeing cap space for the last three years to get LeBron. The tragedy in this is that neither will get him and they wasted three years where the East wasn't good.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

NBA Western Conference Preview

We are 12 days from the NBA season starts and I can enjoy watching a DC team play a game. This isn't usually as big a moment for me, but have you seen the Skins attempt to play football? As Rip Torn once said, "it looks like a couple of retards trying to hump a doorknob out there." That being said, here is what I think of the Western Conference; I'll get to the East sometime tomorrow probably.

Power Houses
Los Angeles Lakers- people made such a big deal about Boston chasing after the 95-96 Bulls record of 72 regular season wins, but I never bought it. With this team though, I can see it. Adding Artest means that not only do they have the ability to flat out stop any one player on the other team, but it also means Kobe doesn't have to play him. The Lakers have a great bench featuring Lamar Odom, Shannon Brown, Jordan Farmar, and Adam Morrison (HAHAHAHA! I couldn't even type that without laughing; what a failure). The one weakness tey didn't address is the need for a quick point guard to matchup up against guys like Chris Paul, or Aaron Brooks, but I think Farmar can step up and be a bigger help there this year.

Denver Nuggets- Ever since Chauncey Billups arrived and started distributing the ball to other people, the team has thrived. J.R. Smith and Nene' both had career highs in points and even though 'Melo had a bit of a down year, the team was one of the elite. The Nuggets have every aspect of a good team from the superstar in Anthony, to the crazy energetic douche bag in Chris Andersen...expect them to be great this year.

San Antonio- Every year I tell myself the are too old, but they seem to be just fine despite having players who were alive when Lincoln freed the slaves. In the offseason, the Spurs got some big talent in Richard Jefferson and Antonio McDyess to add to the core of now superstar Tony Parker, Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, and Roger Mason. They could be title contender, but the injury bug actually lives somewhere in their locker room.

Portland Trailblazers- Last season, the only thing this team was missing was experience and now they have it. Whether you have heard of Brandon Roy or not, he's a straight baller. The Blazers also have a core of great, young talent in LaMarcus Aldridge, Rudy Fernandez and Travis Outlaw to help him out. I don't count Greg Oden here because 1) he is like 72, and 2) you don't get to be mentioned if you're gonna be in five games.

Dallas Mavericks- People are giddy about Shawn Marion here, but last year, all i saw was an old man that is playing in a game that was too quick for him. As always, they are gonna score a boat load of points, but where will any defense come from?

Question Marks

Phoenix Suns- The Suns are interesting because like Denver, they seem to have the makings of a good team; the problem is the "parts", are five years out of there prime. That doesn't mean they aren't good, but just a little slower. The biggest problem I see with them is that I don't see a team with identity. All of their players have different skill sets and that might cause issues in deciding whether to speed up the pace or set up the offense.

Utah Jazz- After a great year two seasons ago, Utah was terrible despite having most of the same pieces. If Boozer comes back strong, he and Millsap form a great front court to go along with point guard Deron Williams. The problem is that they don't have a true scorer which you really do need in the NBA.

New Orleans Hornets- Chris Paul is a basketball god that gets to play in front of 30 people ever night. The Hornets did nothing but back track in the offseason by getting rid of Rasual Butler and trading for oft injured Emeke Okafor...just set CP3 free so he doesn't hate his life.

Mediocrity Deserves Applause Too
Houston Rockets- Remember how I said the injury bug lives in San Antonio? Well, the injury gorilla live in Houston. T-Mac never plays more than 50 games an Yao is probably out for the year...again. they have a few good pieces to supplement a star, but no star.

Los Angeles Clippers- Had a great offseason, but does it matter? Blake Griffin could average a triple-double and they still wouldn't be mentioned in the newspaper. If LA doesn't care, why should I?

Oklahoma City Thunder- Kevin Durant might be the best scorer in the NBA and he has a few people around him that aren't terrible too. They look like Portland three years ago- scary potential, but not there yet.

Minnesota Timberwolves, Memphis Grizzles, Golden State Warriors, and Sacramento Kings-
People always talk about how good the West is, but it's because they forget about these guys. Each team has one or two gems that are great, but the team is so bad, that no one cares.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Let My Unhealthy Obsession With Gilbert Arenas Resume

Consider this my first post of MANY on Gil...

For two years now, I've had to defend my boy Gil from all of the narrow-minded retards who turned on the Wizards firs legit star since Chris Webber. Why? Because he got hurt after signing a contract he deserves every penny of.

That is absolutely idiotic; anyone that knows anything about him knows how hard he works and how he killed himself to come back. In fact, that determination to return and help his team was the reason he re-injured himself. Questioning his competitiveness is like questioning Peyton Manning's ability to throw a football.

For people who aren't aware (which is pretty much everyone), the NBA preseason has started and that includes my beloved Wizards. I honestly believe that we will be back in the playoffs this year, but I'll wait for my NBA Preview to elaborate on that; however, all of these prediction rely on Gil being, well, Gil.

That being said, he's baaaaaaaaack!

In his last three games, Gil is averaging 16.7 ppg and 7 assists in just 23 minutes a game. If you adjust those numbers to the 40 mpg he will be playing in the regular season, thats 28 points and 12 assists. I'm not saying I'm expecting those numbers, but 25 and 7 aren't unreasonable.

I have to admit, I will miss Gil's antics. He has already said he won't resume his blog and last night, he talked to the media for the first time since media day. That being said, I can respect the fact that he wants to be taken seriously and stay focused on basketball.

Out of all of everything that comes with the return of Agent Zero, I'm most looking forward to him resuming his god-given-talent of hitting game-winning shots. I know that people love to forget things that happened before last week, but I'll never forget what it felt like to see him win a game at the buzzer and hear Steve Buckhantz scream "DAGGER" as loud as he can. When that starts happening again, I will laugh at all of the haters.

Monday, October 12, 2009

MLB Divisional Series Awards

I know that the Phillies-Rockies series isn't technically over, but it doesn't matter. The Phillies are going to win. That being said, lets give out some awards for the series becuase the MLB doesn't

The Comeback Player Award- Alex Rodriguez
As if this isn't obvious. A-Rod came into the series going 0-18 with runners in scoring position. After starting the series by striking out and a fly ball, I assumed that things would never change. However, after that, he returned to the all-star he is, finishing the series with 2 HRs and 6 RBIS.

The Mr. Irrelevant Award- Minnesota Twins
I know I said that the game against the Tigers was going to be their "World Series," but I wasn't expecting them to get swept. I know that two of the games went down to the wire, but they were just dominated by the Yankees' pitching. Not to mention the fact that their all-star closer was the one that blew things for them.

The Monkey Off Their Back Award- Los Angeles Angels
Seeing that the Angels' mascot is a little spider monkey holding up a "rally time" sign, this works on two levels. The Angels and Red Sox have met in the divisional series in '04, '07, and '08 and despite the fact that the Angels looked as good, if not better, than the Red Sox on paper, the Angels could only muster one measly win in those three years. This year, the Angels were finally able to prove that they were better by sweeping the team that has ended their season so many times.

The I have No Faith in You Award- Colorado Rockies
I started this article when game 4 was in the 5th inning, have I made my point? Their story is cute, but no one gave them any chance. For God's sake, I know everything about baseball and I can name like three of their players. (update: The phuckin' Phillies gave up three runs in the 8th and are probably gonna be forced into a game five. People from Phili piss me off.

The Thanks for Making Me Look Stupid Award- St. Louis Cardinals
I thought you would contend for the World Series and told everyone that. Instead, your superstar pitchers were worthless and the 1-2 punch of Holliday and Pujols did nothing except blow a play in the outfield to lose game 2...thanks for making me look like a jackass.

The Biggest Douche Award- Mark Texiera
This guy could save my life twice and I would still spit in his face. How do you grow up in Baltimore, idolize Cal Ripken, and go to Camden Yards, but follow it up by going to the Yankees for a few more bucks? Hey Mark, I hear the Devil is willing to pay you 35 dollars to be apart of his softball team, you wanna play for them in the offseason? Go to Hell

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Who needs tie-breakers?

Imagine you are a team in the NBA that is in the playoff have caught fire at the end of the season to catch the team in the eight spot and finish with the same record. You know what you get? You get to sit at home and watch the playoffs because of a few games you lost in the beginning of the season. Now imagine the same scenario in baseball; in baseball, the tiebreaker is very simple, game 163.

The unique way to settle who gets a trip to the playoffs is by far better that any tiebreaker. The atmosphere is nothing like any baseball game you will every experience, and most importantly, it is going to give you the hotter team. A team that was good early on shouldn't get a trip to the playoffs over a team that is as hot as anyone.

For the Twins and Tigers, this game represents an entire season of work. It is more stressful than any playoff game because there is zero room for error. Whether it's fair or not to have one game mean so much is irrelevant. It makes for great tv, and gives the winning team a boost heading into the post season.

Now, as if the game needed more drama, this game will be the Twins final regular season game in the Metrodome. Well, technically the last game was their last, but "the baggie" decided that it wasn't quite done.

For the Tigers, this is a nightmare of a situation because they know that this game shouldn't have happened; they should have locked the division up weeks ago. Instead, they have to walk into a hostile and emotional stadium where they have struggled. They still have as good a shot as the Twins to win, but to end up in this situation with the team they have should be seen as nothing less than a failure.

While it is true that neither of these teams has a shot in hell at winning a five game series against the Yankees, the winning of this game will do a lot for both of these teams. If Detroit wins, they will avoid the public bashing that the Mets have enjoyed for the last two years; If the Twins win, they have already won their own World Seres and they get to give their fans a few more days in the Metrodome. The bottom line is that game 163 is always huge and the effects of it ripple into the future. Just look at where the Padres are now after being heartbroken by the Rockies two years ago

Monday, October 5, 2009

Redskins: An Epic Fail of a Fantasy Football Team

Ladies and gentlemen, let me squalch any talks of the Redskins' win on Sunday being the turning point of the isn't. In fact, it only further proved the ineptitude of the sad excuse of a football team that dominates the front page of the sports section of the Post.

Believe it or not, this isn't even going to bash Jim Zorn or Jason Campbell (that much). It is going to focus on the shrewd businessman that continuously thinks that finding the loophole in the salary cap system leads to championships.
Last summer, ESPN ranked the best and worst owners of each of the four major sports and to my surprise, the Redskins' owner Dan Snyder wasn't on the list. Why? Because he's at least 'trying' to make the team successful. Remember when you were a little kid and the coach said that so long as you did your best, then you were doing great? that meant two things, 1) you sucked and 2) your team had no shot at being successful. There is no way that this attitude belongs in pro sports.

Every offseason, Dan Snyder 'tries' to make his team the best by making huge off season acquisitions that have a worst success rate than the Raiders first round draft picks. Lets look at the amazing list of players that didn't pan out: Deon Sanders, Bruce Smith, Brandon Lloyd, Jason Taylor, and Adam Archuleta ( I'm already counting Albert Haynesworth just because the Skins are so bad and I'm assuming he will get hurt in the time I write this blog).

After reading that laundry list of over the hump players and players that had one great season during their contract year, you really have to ask if Jim Zorn and Jason Campbell deserve all of the blame, or just a bit of it. The answer is that they just get to be to scapegoats of a failing organization.

I had a friend who spent a good bit of time with Redskins GM Vinny Cerato last year. After he talked with him, he immediately called me and said "I have never met a man who knew so little about football." You think that there is any way my friend says that about the GM o the Giants or Patriots? HELL NO! There in lies the problem, we have a front office that has yet to figure out how to make a 'team.'

As much as it pains me to say, Redskins' fans should have seen the signs of this season years ago. The steps we took always led to this team that has a few talented pieces in a system that can't utilize them and has no idea what kind of identity it has. For example, Clinton Portis can't run effectively because Campbell isn't great at the deep ball which also turns Santana Moss into an average receiver at best. See? There isn't a way the team was ever set up to score points. Instead, all the team can manage is check downs to Chris Cooley and small receivers like mMss who have never been good possession guys.

Here is the final analysis of the team: a fire-sale is needed-everything must go. Every coach, person in management, the owner, and pretty much every player. Even the good ones we have don't belong in our system and we really do need to start from scratch. Pretend we are an expansion franchise and draft a new set of players.

I know it seems harsh, but what on our team is really championship worthy? Portis- a runningback who can't stay healthy for an entire season, let alone a playoff run? Santana Moss-a deep threat with no other value? our secondary- which is undisciplined and can't catch a ball if their life depended on it? No, nothing is strong...and that's Dan Snyder's fault.

People in DC should be calling for his head with the same passion as Oriole fans call for Angelos'. Where are the torches, the pitchforks, and the crazed mob? The time for unconditional love is over and tough love is needed. People need to realize we are dangerously close to falling into a pit with the Lions and Raiders...and you can't come back from that.