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SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

You baseball parents know nothing of junior cricket.

Drive to oval 8.00 am Saturday morning. Finish at 1.30 pm. NB: The second innings of the same match continues the following week. Find some shade, set up the folding chair, bring a couple of novels and an esky.

posted by owlhouse at 09:19 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Todd McLellan parts ways with San Jose Sharks

posted by tommytrump at 08:25 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

The Oilers have also not gotten better on their 3rd and 4th lines, which are increasingly important. Part of it is veteran free agents have been keeping away, scared by the tire fire I guess. That's about to change. Their management is poor, their player development not necessarily poor, and definitely not as bad as people make out.

They completely rebuilt their scouting system in 2010 and there may be good results from their lower rounds on the way. Not many picks below about #20 step right in or even before 2 or 3 years seasoning.

Look how the Islanders took a defence comparable to Edmontons and rebuilt it in 10 minutes by getting Leddy and Boychuk. In the new NHL teams are having to shed their players to keep under the cap. Average players are increasingly available (good news for Edmonton) and good to very good players can also be had fairly routinely. For example, it seems very likely that Seabrook will be available this summer - Toews and Kane are getting 10 million each starting this summer. How long can the Preds afford to keep Josl, Weber and Jones? Etc.

Also, stacked teams can end up with an overflow of prospects and need to make trades to balance the present with the future. Example, Clendenning was arguably Chicago's top non-NHL defensive prospect. Vancouver picked him up for their 2014 5th round pick, Gustav Forsling. Chicago restocks for the future and doesn't have to deal with Clendenning who wouldn't be able to be sent up and down next year without clearing waivers. He's a guy who would right away be solid bottom six for Edmonton with very good potential to go top four and also run the powerplay.

Anyway, Edmonton doesn't even need to trade one of their top 6. New arena, hot talent, strong fan base - there'll be free agents choosing them for sure. They could trade Draisatl, but as likely they'll put him on the wing and turn him into a power forward. Good players on entry level contracts are almost as valuable as great players making 8 million/year.

posted by rumple at 05:32 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Sooner or later, one or more of these players will move to a stronger team in a more noticeable city, and then the recognition will come

Many of the best NHL players play in smaller Canadian and US markets and don't get the media play others do. True hockey fans know who the best players are and could care less about what share of media attention they get. Stamkos plays in Tampa, Benn in Dallas, Tavares for the Islanders, Giardano in Calgary .. none of whom get a lot of ink until they visit a big market and scorch their opponents. They make great money and play for highly competitive teams.

As for "strong teams in more noticeable city" - teams like Chicago, Pittsburgh, and the Rangers are already struggling with cap issues and can't possibly sign any of the Oilers young stars. Detroit may be the only location that fits your criteria.

posted by cixelsyd at 04:39 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Did any of the parents slip you some cash? I'm in the early stages of the kids-in-sorts thing (my boys are 9, 7 and 4), but some of the mind-numbing tedium has given me a much greater appreciation of/for my parents.

posted by holden at 04:21 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Worthy homeric link, but now I'm awash in Economist banner ads proclaiming "Great Minds Like a Think."

Which calls to mind Braves pitcher Terry Forster, who perennially struggled with weight problems. Perhaps "embraced" is a better word.

Forster was once called "a fat tub of goo" by Letterman. His reply to the ribbing: "A waist is a terrible thing to mind".

The inverse of course being that a hard man is good to find.

posted by beaverboard at 03:37 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Somebody call in the linesmen and break up this hockey fight. Too bad if they do, it's just getting good. The problem with Edmonton's young talent is that Edmonton just doesn't get much exposure in the US media. Whenever they do, the youngsters are fully appreciated for their skills, do not seem to be suffering from poor coaching, but are stuck in a city that does not draw a lot of attention for much of anything. I'm not trying to run Edmonton down, but the city just doesn't hit the headlines much, for sports or anything else. Sooner or later, one or more of these players will move to a stronger team in a more noticeable city, and then the recognition will come.

posted by Howard_T at 03:24 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Two hour and two minute Sunday night baseball game

Not bad, but I took a middle school game through 7 full innings in 1:45 last Friday afternoon. With middle schoolers, who so often stand with the bat on their shoulders, turning the game into a walk-a-thon, it is rather extraordinary to get it done in less than 2 hours. The key, as holden has suggested, is for the pitchers to throw strikes and the batters to respond by swinging at them. Even at the MLB level the umpiring has a lot to do with it as well. A generous strike zone, as long as it's consistent, will speed things up considerably. It's too bad so many umpires seem to have a strike zone that limits what a pitcher can do.

posted by Howard_T at 03:15 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

A Rod and Signature significance.

That great baseball analyst (and former Federal Reserve Bank Chairman) Alan Greenspan had the exact term for this. He called it "Irrational Exuberance", and the term seems to fit exactly. Of course, Mr. Greenspan was talking about economic expectations during the "dot com" stock market bubble of the 1990s. The dot com bubble was out at the plate in 2000.

posted by Howard_T at 03:08 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

A Rod and Signature significance.

posted by yerfatma at 01:38 PM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

This whole meme that the Oilers ruin their prospects is just complete Bullshit.

That's not the meme - the meme is that the Oilers are perpetually awful despite the amount of elite talent they are able to draft and the constant stream of good players on the horizon who are seemingly unable to move the dial on actually winning games - and thus these players are being totally wasted on a team that can't even sniff at the playoffs.

The Oilers will get another elite, top-3 forward, and yet they'll still be about four D and a goalie short of being an actual contender. Will they skirt into the post-season soon? Sure, but that's a bloody embarrassing goal to have 5 years after drafting Taylor Hall and three other #1 overalls.

posted by dfleming at 10:42 AM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Oilers have a wealth of skilled young offensive players and McDavid only adds to that. They are in great position now to deal a highly valued player and obtain a few NHL level defensemen and defensive minded forwards to round out their squad. RNH and Hall would fetch top value but the Oilers would be stupid to deal RNH.

McDavid in Toronto? Good god, couldn't be a worse place for a young player to begin a career. Especially with the current Leafs roster filled with older overpaid players who only show up on pay day. Leafs haven't even begun rebuilding. They have a less than stellar record identifying young talent in the draft and trade away any decent young players that fall into their lap. They are at least 4 years behind where the Oilers currently are in building a competitive team.

Leafs will have a great shot at the 2016 draft lottery. Oilers won't.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:08 AM on April 20

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Oilers have talent, its just they only have one kind of talent. Their bold plan to completely ignore d-men and goalies when acquiring players makes what they have look much worse than what it is.

At some point they'll luck into a somewhat functional back-end (blind squirrels, etc.) and then the playoffs will be there.

posted by deflated at 11:31 PM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Two hour and two minute Sunday night baseball game, as the Cardinals finish the sweep with a 2-1 victory over the Reds. Very refreshing, especially considering the 4 hour Red Sox-Yankees games we often get in that spot. Combination of two relatively fast-working pitchers (Wainwright and Leake) who pitched good not great games (very few walks, but few strikeouts as well -- lots of outs on contact) and some pretty mediocre-to-bad at bats. Oh, and no in-inning pitching changes (3 total pitchers, with both starters going 8 innings -- which is a complete game in the case of Leake).

posted by holden at 10:22 PM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

This whole meme that the Oilers ruin their prospects is just complete Bullshit.

I didn't say they ruined the prospects.

I'm just saying that the Oilers, as a franchise, is a sinkhole for talent. This will be the 4th #1 overall pick in 6 drafts, with a #3 and #7 included as well.

The players might be great, but the results seem to be the same every year. They can't win. Every year, people who follow hockey like to say "This is the year that the Oilers' talent finally starts to show.", and every year it seems to be a smoldering wreck.

The Senators had three #1 picks in four years (none of them the quality that Edmonton has had), and made the playoffs in year five. Other than being Toronto/Buffalo's bitch in the playoffs for the first 7 years, Ottawa put together a good run.

The Oilers have had more and better picks, and they've shown zero improvement.

That's what I meant by "tire fire". You keep feeding stuff into it, and it keeps burning.

posted by grum@work at 09:23 PM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Can I buy a vowel?

posted by beaverboard at 05:09 PM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

This whole meme that the Oilers ruin their prospects is just complete Bullshit. Taylor Hall is an excellent player, elite at his position. RNH just finshed his 2 1/2 year pro and is an excellent two way player on a shitty team. He's maybe one of the most under-rated players in the league. Yakupov has had a slow start on a crappy team but really looked good the last third of the season. Eberle was drafted 22nd overall which makes the Leafs drafting record look pathetic. The Oilers only first round miss recently has been Paajarvi, who did nothing after being traded away. All these players have had multiple coaches with radically different systems as well.

Yakupov and RNH are both second in their draft class for points. RNH has the highest points per game in his draft class. You could make the case that RNH was rushed into the NHL before he was physically ready and thereby hurt his shoulder. Possible. You could say Yakupov has been misused by his coaches and really only has flourished with the new coach and a centre with which he has chemistry. Neither of these are overly damning or even unusual.

It's too early to say, but Draisatl looks very promising and Nurse is almost guaranteed to be top 4 quality defenceman or top 2 more likely.

It's true their lower round draft choices have been pathetic and maybe some of that is bad development, maybe some is bad scouting. Whatever. Lots of teams in the league have lousy lower round records - it's a crapshoot. Those with great pickups often get lucky for a while then regress.

At least the Oilers didn't explicitly tank at the end of the season, they picked up their game a lot and showed real progress and actual pride, which a lot of their bottom-feeding cohort could learn from. They need some defence, and have some good ones ready for next year, and then their goaltending, which is decent but not great, will look a lot better than it does.

Not that I like the Oil, but I look forward to hating them again, and also seeing them stomp on Calgary for the next 10 years.

posted by rumple at 04:07 PM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

As a 12-13 year old I truly appreciated the weekly visit to Hee-Haw. Buck and Barbi #ftw.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:03 PM on April 19

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Younger SpoFites go scrambling to google Barbie Benton

It's "Barbi".

You know, so they can search Google properly. She's a bit before my time but I know who she is because of, uh, historical print records.

posted by grum@work at 09:45 PM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Oh, great.

Another wonderful hockey prospect thrown onto the endless tire fire that is the Edmonton Oilers, to be forgotten by the rest of the NHL.

Maybe Hall, Eberle, Yakupov, and Nugent-Hopkins can give him some pointers.

At least in Toronto McDavid would have gotten some publicity...

posted by grum@work at 09:38 PM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Edmonton Oilers win first pick in NHL draft

posted by tommytrump at 09:05 PM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Younger SpoFites go scrambling to google Barbie Benton while Howard and I sit there watching them and chuckling to ourselves.

If we still had copies of those old magazines she once graced and they were in good condition, they'd probably be worth a little money.

(You don't need a GPS to locate Howard right now. He just ran up into his attic with dollar signs in his eyes.)

It didn't occur to me that the mention of a foreign language variety show would morph into a country-fried avianatomical discussion.

I'd like to put in a good word for Jane Russell's cheekbones. Maybe I'm the only person who ever noticed them.

posted by beaverboard at 05:10 PM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Why I didn't a-know thet, Tahoemoj. Tell me, did it dig up a bone for Barbie Benton?

two sets of laws of aerodynamics (with one pertaining to the human form)

Did any of you know that Howard Hughes invented a bra for Jane Russell that highlighted her best feature (or features, to be more accurate) for her role in The Outlaw?. Hughes took advantage of his experience in aircraft design to develop a sort of articulated lift for MS Russell, and the result was, shall we say, spectacular. The secret is that she did not like the Hughes design, and made a substitute from one of her own bras padded with tissue and re-shaped with tightened straps. Howard Hughes once commented, "There are two good reasons why men go to see her. Those are enough."

posted by Howard_T at 03:18 PM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

I don't know about anybody else here, but in my head, I am picturing this exchange as taking place between people who randomly pop out of a cornfield.

Hey Howard, did you hear my dog a-run oft last weekend...?

posted by tahoemoj at 01:37 PM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

I watched Hee-Haw for the same reasons I watched Sabado Gigante

In my travels, whenever I hit a cultural pocket in the US where both Spanish and Junior Samples are being spoken fluently at the same time, I feel like I'm home.

I feel a song coming on.

"Thar's a waitress in Texarkana..."

posted by beaverboard at 11:57 AM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

If one accepts the notion that there are two sets of laws of aerodynamics (with one pertaining to the human form), given Howard's military and engineering background and his viewership of Sabado, I can't think of anyone who is more familiar with both sets of laws than he is.

posted by beaverboard at 11:52 AM on April 18

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Atlanta over Brooklyn in 4

Cleveland over Boston in 6

Milwaukee over Chicago in 7

Washington over Toronto in 6

Golden State over New Orleans in 5

Dallas over Houston in 7

San Antonio over Los Angeles in 6

Portland over Memphis in 7

East scorer: LeBron James

West scorer: Stephen Curry

Ejection: Rick Carlisle

Moneyball: 27.5

posted by rcade at 09:52 AM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Just devastated. Heading out to slug down some Patron,

I was never a fan of Sabado Gigante, but I did watch it every once in a while. Don't tell my wife, but the feature I really appreciated was the bevy of lovely and well endowed ladies that populated the program.

My meager kingdom to have Hee-Haw available on Netflix.

There's an occasional re-run on RFDTV, if your cable or satellite provider carries that channel. I watched Hee-Haw for the same reasons I watched Sabado Gigante. As you might suspect, I fulfill both requirements to be a dirty old man.

posted by Howard_T at 12:49 AM on April 18

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

To be clear, we only ever watched to prank call. Much like QVC and the Quacker Factory, the good Lord bless that poor ex-sinner's soul.

posted by yerfatma at 10:31 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

If by some miracle The 700 Club were ever cancelled, I'd have a hell of a time annoying my wife on weekend nights.

My meager kingdom to have Hee-Haw available on Netflix.

posted by Ufez Jones at 10:01 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

If by some miracle The 700 Club were ever cancelled, I'd have a hell of a time annoying my wife on weekend nights.

If you're spending your weekend nights with the 700 Club while most heathens are out pleasure seeking, I don't need to fill out a Pray and Pledge card for the sake of your soul. Why pay good money on behalf of a guy who is already counted among the blessed and redeemed in the eyes of the lucid Reverend?

The proper answer is that there's no such thing as too much pledge money.

(Someday we can ruminate about my past association with various members of the Robertson realm over an earthly beverage.)

posted by beaverboard at 09:39 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

"Has he got some sauce?"

posted by yerfatma at 07:10 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Just devastated. Heading out to slug down some Patron, urinate on a pinata, and set it on fire with a couple of Hooters waitresses jumping up and down

Any word on what's going to happen to the lion? My heart goes out to the luchador with the trumpet, I hope he and the lion can stay close.

If by some miracle The 700 Club were ever cancelled, I'd have a hell of a time annoying my wife on weekend nights.

posted by yerfatma at 03:10 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Pennsylvania, California, New York, Ohio, and Alabama would be the favourites, I believe.

posted by grum@work at 01:57 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

I've seen a handful of similar articles, but this one has a nice graphic representation: What The MLB Would Look Like If Players Played For Their Home States

posted by Ufez Jones at 01:26 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Flyers fire coach Craig Berube

posted by tommytrump at 12:58 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

This is more FarceFilter than SportsFilter material, but to hardy denizens like yerfatma and me, the cultural crush of 2015 is not going to be the final airing of the Letterman show, but the news as of today that Sabado Gigante is ending its 53 year run in September.

It has been one of the few places one could turn in order to confirm that the traditional concept of "boom or bust" had a viable alternative in "boom and bust".

Because the show does include live team competition and timed events that require a certain degree of physical mobility, I am compelled to deliver the sad news here.

Just devastated. Heading out to slug down some Patron, urinate on a pinata, and set it on fire with a couple of Hooters waitresses jumping up and down, hollering, and clapping excitedly in a sincere and unsolicited show of enthusiasm and support.

posted by beaverboard at 12:25 PM on April 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Simulate your football team's upcoming draft. Make sure to set it 7 rounds to show off your DIII/ 1AA nous.

posted by yerfatma at 12:19 PM on April 17

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

C = Cavaliers or C = Celtics?

Not sure. He must mean the team with the 'C' sound.

posted by tron7 at 10:59 AM on April 17

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Howard_T -- as long as you are calling for Yannick Noah to get ejected, why not Tito Horford, Dell Curry, or Mychal Thompson?

posted by holden at 10:25 AM on April 17

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

We were missing plenty of first choice players too. This wasn't an international date so both teams mainly selected domestic league players.

Dos a Cero!!

posted by billsaysthis at 10:19 AM on April 17

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

OK, here goes. I am absolutely thrilled to once again go to a Boston Celtics playoff game -- or 2 or 3. It should be 2 for sure, but my son's girlfriend might want to go to game 4. I would complain, but she's my fitness trainer as well as son's girlfriend, and a really nice person to boot.

Atlanta vs Brooklyn: The no stars Hawks should have little difficulty with Brooklyn. On the "blind hog and acorn" theory, Nets will take one game, but the rest will be no contest. Atlanta in 5.

Cleveland vs Boston: Isaiah Thomas goes absolutely bonkers, averages 36 per game, a trio of Celtics defenders wears down LeBron James to the point where he loses his temper in game 3 and is ejected and suspended for attacking an official, and the Celtics win the series. All this will happen sometime in the next two nights, and then I will awaken from the dream. Cleveland in 5.

Chicago vs Milwaukee: The Bucks have been a bit of an enigma, looking unbeatable on some evenings and quite ordinary on others. On the other hand, the Bulls have suffered all year from injury, and at times seem to have stopped listening to Coach Thibodeau. Rose is back, but is he back to his top form? I look for the Bucks to stop here. Chicago in 6.

Toronto vs Washington: Raptors are a talented bunch. Landry Fields, DeMar DeRozan, and Louis Williams can fill the nets, while Valanciunas can get the ball off the boards. Defense could be a problem for them. Washington lacks the scorers of Toronto, but Wall and Gortat sre a tough combination to stop. One thing that Wizards have is the playoff experience of one gray bearded Paul Pierce. His presence on the floor, on the bench, and in the locker room will keep Washington focused. This will be no easy series, but it's Washington in 6.

Golden State vs New Orleans: The best team in the NBA against one that crawled into the post season in its last game. To quote Ogden Nash, "A remarkable bird is the Pelican, his beak holds more than his belly can." New Orleans will stick its beak into Golden State, but will wind up with a belly full of Warriors' basketball. Golden State in 4.

Houston vs Dallas: Who cares about the NBA championship; this one is for the championship of Texas. It could very well prove to be the best series of the 8 being played in the first round. Rockets have Jams Harden and Trevor Ariza to do their scoring, and with Dwight Howard back they have a third threat. The Mark Cuban AC counters with Monta Ellis, Dirk Nowitzki, and Chandler Parsons. The question for Dallas is whether or not Rajon Rondo is able to work within the system and support the others. I watched Rondo for his years in Boston, and I know he saves his best for the big moments. This series is the one I will watch when it's available. I look for Dallas in 7.

Los Angeles Clippers vs San Antonio Spurs: Doc Rivers vs Gregg Popovich; Tim Duncan vs Blake Griffin; Kawhi Leonard vs J. J. Reddick. The matchups in this one are intriguing. The only problem with this series is that too many of the games will be in the Pacific time zone. I mean, I'm a night owl, but that's ridiculous. The big difference between these two clubs is at the point guard position. Chris Paul against Paddy Mills might be spectacular. As good as Mills has been this year, I look to Chris Paul to guide the Clippers and sell plenty of insurance. Los Angeles in 7.

Portland vs Memphis: Trail Blazers might have problems if Chris Kaman and Nicolas Batum miss any time in this one. Both are questionable for game 1. Damian Lillard can make up a lot of the Portland offense, but can he do enough without the others? Injuries are a problem for Memphis as well. Tony Allen, one of the best defenders in the league, is coming back from a hamstring strain and is questionable for game 1. Mike Conley is likewise questionable after missing the last 4 games with a sprained foot. Beno Udrih is a competent backup at the point, but after him only rookie Russ Smith is left. Marc Gasol, Zach Randolph, and Jeff Green will provide sufficient offense for the Grizzlies, and can also play enough defense to slow Kaman and Batum. Memphis in 6.

High scorer in the East: DeMar DeRozan High scorer in the West: James Harden Ejected player: Yannick Noah (on a flagrant 2) 3-point moneyball (scoring average): 36.2

posted by Howard_T at 12:29 AM on April 17

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Atlanta Hawks in four. Cleveland Cavaliers in four. Chicago Bulls in six. Washington Wizards in six.

Golden State Warriors in six. Dallas Mavericks in seven. San Antonio Spurs in six. Portland Trailblazers in seven.

Eastern Conference player: LeBron. Western Conference player: Anthony Davis. Ejection: Matt Barnes 27.5

posted by Goyoucolts at 12:00 AM on April 17

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

I predict a C's victory in 12.

C = Cavaliers or C = Celtics?

posted by NoMich at 09:59 PM on April 16

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

It was his 3rd cap but his first start and first goal.

posted by bender at 08:39 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Atlanta in 5
Cleveland in 5
Chicago in 6
Washington in 6
Golden State in 4
Dallas in 7
LA Clippers in 7
Portland in 6

LeBron
Steph Curry
Blake Griffin
34.1

posted by bender at 08:38 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Uhm, did you all not see how the Celtics destroyed the Cavs last time out? I predict a C's victory in 12.

posted by yerfatma at 07:47 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Hawks in 5
Cleveland in 4
Bulls in 5
Wizards in 7

Warriors in 5
Houston in 7
Spurs in 7
Grizzlies in 6

LeBron
Harden
Blake Griffin
28.5 points

posted by holden at 07:36 PM on April 16

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

You may be right, Bismarck - I thought I heard one of the commentators say it was a debut, but I (or them) could be wrong.

posted by sbacharach at 05:15 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Atlanta in 4

Cleveland in 5

Chicago in 6

Toronto in 7

Golden State in 4

Houston in 5

Clippers in 7

Memphis in 7

East- LeBron James 32.7

West- Blake Griffin 31.7

Ejected- Matt Barnes

Money Ball - 32.7

posted by ic23b at 04:40 PM on April 16

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

the winning US goal came from a debutante

I'd pay to see that. But didn't Morris play in the 4-1 loss to Ireland?

Amusingly, Morris couldn't be given the Man of the Match award, because he's 20 and the award is sponsored by Budweiser.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 04:03 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Atlanta Hawks in 5 Cleveland Cavaliers in 5 Chicago Bulls in 6 Washington Wizards in 6

Western Conference: Golden State Warriors in 5 Houston Rockets in 5 San Antonio Spurs in 7 Portland Trailblazers in 6

Lebron James - 28.4 James Harden - 29.2 Ejected: Matt Barnes Moneyball: 29.2

posted by dfleming at 01:44 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

(Highest scoring avg is independent of your choices for leading conference scorer. Just pick where you think the number will land. If you're within .5 over or under, then Cha-ching! you've hit the Mavs Moneyball.)

posted by Ufez Jones at 01:33 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

ATL in 5
CLE in 4
CHI in 6
TOR in 7

GSW in 4
HOU in 5
SAS in 7
MEM in 7

East scorer: L.James (CLE) - 27.5
West Scorer: J.Harden (HOU) 28.3
Ejected: J.R. Smith (CLE)
Highest Scoring Avg: 28.3

posted by grum@work at 01:29 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Eastern Conference:
ATL in 4
CLE in 4
MIL in 7
TOR in 7

Western Conference:
GSW in 5
HOU in 7
SAS in 6
POR in 7

Bonus:
East Scorer: L. James - 28.7
West Scorer: S. Curry - 29.4
Ejected: Josh Smith (HOU)
Highest Scoring Avg: 29.4

(I'm not sure if I'm understanding the scoring predictions here)

posted by NoMich at 01:19 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

Hawks in 5
Cavs in 5
Bulls in 5
Raptors in 7

Warriors in 4
Rockets in 5
Spurs in 6
Grizzlies in 6

East Leading Scorer: Irving
West Leading Scorer: Curry
Ejected: Blake Griffin
Moneyball: 30

posted by tron7 at 12:42 PM on April 16

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

Happy with the win, but it looked like Mexico fielded a team with significantly less experience than ours - despite the fact the winning US goal came from a debutante.

posted by sbacharach at 12:41 PM on April 16

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Mark Stone has a microfractured wrist and his availability is questionable as a result of the two-handed PK Subban slash - reports from TSN insiders are Subban won't be suspended, and reports from the arena are that Chris Neil was the first guy on the ice today for the Senators.

It was a blatant and successful attempt to injure and the kind of play, suspend-able or not, that just makes hockey that much more dangerous for everyone.

posted by dfleming at 12:14 PM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

My picks:

Hawks in a sweep
Cavs in 5
Bulls in 6
Wizards in 6

GSW in 5
Mavs in 6
Spurs in 6
Memphis in 7

East Leading Scorer: LBJ
West Leading Scorer: Steph Curry
Ejected Player: Mat Fucking Barnes
Moneyball: 32.7 PPG

posted by Ufez Jones at 11:58 AM on April 16

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em

You have the chance to earn three points for each series. One for picking the series winner, one for picking the correct number of games in the series, and a bonus point for getting both correct.

Eastern Conference:
(1) Atlanta Hawks vs (8) Brooklyn Nets
(2) Cleveland Cavaliers vs (7) Boston Celtics
(3) Chicago Bulls vs (6) Milwaukee Bucks
(4) Toronto Raptors vs (5) Washington Wizards

Western Conference:
(1) Golden State Warriors vs (8) New Orleans Pelicans
(2) Houston Rockets vs (7) Dallas Mavericks
(3) Los Angeles Clippers vs (6) San Antonio Spurs
(4) Portland Trailblazers vs (5) Memphis Grizzlies

Bonus Points! Bonus Points!
One bonus point for picking the Eastern Conference player with the highest scoring average during the first round (to one decimal point)
One bonus point for picking the Western Conference player with the highest scoring average during the first round (to one decimal point)
Two bonus points for naming a player or coach that gets ejected during the first round (straight ejection or two technical fouls - does not include players that foul out via personal fouls)
Three-point Moneyball: To the first decimal place, what will the highest overall scoring average in the first round be? Come within +/- 0.5 points and you'll land this bonus.

Max points in the first round: 31

posted by Ufez Jones at 11:46 AM on April 16

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

How do you make long drives, Fancy Pants? Big Bertha?

posted by yerfatma at 11:11 AM on April 16

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

I am living in fear that Scotts will turn footage of the match into an ad for its turf care products.

Here now cometh Ray Hudson and Scott, the burly Highlands garden gnome of all US suburbia. After a few pints.

"Feed your pitch, Mikey! For God's sake, man. It's a living, breathing thing! Can you hear it crying out to ye? FEED IT!"

posted by beaverboard at 11:09 AM on April 16

U.S. Men Win 2-0 Over Mexico in San Antonio

That pitch was nothing short of a disgrace.

posted by flannelenigma at 10:34 AM on April 16

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

I don't know how astronaut diapers got into this discussion, but I am in awe, sir.

posted by rcade at 10:04 AM on April 16

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

My favorite romantic sports feud

This was no feud, rather it was friendliness to excess. Back in 1973, Yankee teammates pitchers Floyd Peterson and Mike Kekich engaged in occasional wife swapping. Look at item 6 in the link. It grew to the point where the two actually traded wives. I always wondered if there was a player to be named later in that trade.

posted by Howard_T at 11:17 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

posted by NoMich at 10:13 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Mexico v USA on one of the Spanish language channels right now. The only soccer match that I really, really want to watch.

posted by NoMich at 10:11 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Eff! You're right.

Ducks over Jets in 6

Thanks tommy

posted by NoMich at 10:05 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

NoMich, you missed the Anaheim/Winnipeg series I think.

posted by tommytrump at 09:23 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Ottawa in 6

Washington in 7

New York Rangers in 5

Tampa Bay in 5

St. Louis in 6

Calgary in 7

Nashville in 7

Anaheim in 7

Stamkos

posted by tommytrump at 09:20 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Montreal in 5
Tampa in 6
NYR in 5
NYI in 7

StL in 6
Smashville in 6
CalGARY in 7

Leading Scorer: Stamkos

posted by NoMich at 08:34 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Just checked with Cristal Taylor, and she is pissed that a Mavs fan of all people would reference Anna Benson as a top level response. Really pissed.

She just ordered a carton of astronaut diapers through the dispensary in Titusville. She should have them soon. Watch your back, man.

posted by beaverboard at 08:11 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Habs in 6
Wings in 7
Rangers in 6
Caps in 7
Blues in 6
Canucks in 6
Predators in 7
Ducks in 5

Ovechkin

posted by holden at 07:49 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Ottawa in 7 Islanders in 6 Blackhawks in 5 Flames in 7 Rangers in 5 Tampa in 6 Blues in 6 Anaheim in 5

Top scorer: Rick Nash

posted by dfleming at 07:42 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Ottawa in 7

New York Islanders in 6

Chicago in 6

Vancouver in 5

New York Rangers in 5

Tampa Bay in 5

St. Louis in 7

Anaheim in 4

Top scorer: Backstrom (Washington)

posted by rcade at 06:54 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Habs in 6

Caps in 5

Hawks in 5

Flames in 6

Wings in 7

Wild in 7

Ducks in 5

Goals-Tavares

posted by tahoemoj at 06:20 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

He might even trade Phil Kessel back to Boston for a couple of bags of pucks

Nonis already made that offer to the Bruins in an attempt to get rid of the associated contract but the Bruins passed.

posted by cixelsyd at 06:14 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Montreal in 6

Islanders in 7

Chicago in 7

Vancouver in 6

Rangers in 4

Detroit in 7

St. Louis in 4

Anaheim in 5

Goal Scorer- Ovechkin

posted by ic23b at 05:57 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Montreal in 5
Washington in 6
Nashville in 7
Calgary in 6
NY Rangers in 4
Detroit in 6
St. Louis in 5
Winnipeg in 7
Ovechkin

posted by bender at 05:25 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

With the Bruins alternating between highly entertaining and brutally incompetent this season, I haven't paid a lot of attention to the NHL this season. I will attempt to pull a few out of my hat.

Montreal vs Ottawa: Senators might just pull Montreal's old trick of introducing a relative newcomer in goal, having him go on an insane hot streak, and steal the series. Ottawa in 6.

Islanders vs Washington: Two words: Ovechkin, Trotz. With Ovechkin playing really good hockey and Trotz having sold his defensive responsibility schemes, the Caps are looking strong. Washington in 5.

Chicago vs Nashville: Blackhawks talent is not music to the Music City team. Chicago in 5.

Calgary vs Vancouver: It took a bit of time, but Vancouver seems to have jelled. Calgary can be tough, but not tough enough. Vancouver in 7.

Pittsburgh vs Rangers: Penguins have to be the playoff team that has done the least with the most talent. There are others in this category, but none made the playoffs. Rangers are solid from top to bottom. Rangers in 4.

Detroit vs Tampa Bay: Red Wings made the playoffs through the grace and ineptitude of a few other teams. Tampa Bay has a lot of young talent. Tampa Bay in 5.

Minnesota vs St. Louis: This is another pairing of a solid team with some depth against a good team that plays hard. Go with the Blues here. St. Louis in 6.

Winnipeg vs Anaheim: Duck! It's the Jets. Jets (at least those of the US Navy and Marine Corps variety) can't fly without JP-5 fuel, while ducks do nicely on whatever they can find. Jets will be grounded and ducks will swim placidly on the frozen pond. Anaheim in 5.

Goal scorers to watch: Ovechkin is an easy pick. I have to look at Stamkos, Tavares, and Monahan, but figure Washington to get put on the power play often enough to give the nod to the Russian. Top Scorer is Ovechkin.

Note for Ufez, if you put up an NBA pickem, I'm in. I have my seats for the first 2 Celtics home games, section 316, Row 5, Seats 9 and 10. Go Celtics. Nice thing this year is that the team does not charge the season ticket accounts until the games are scheduled and necessary. Two years ago they made buying a full playoff package a part of the season ticket renewal, then had to credit the accounts for games not played. It wasn't exactly fair, but there are worse things done.

posted by Howard_T at 05:11 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

My favorite romantic sports feud was the allegation that Jimmy Jackson poached Toni Braxton from Jason Kidd when the two men were Dallas Mavericks. Braxton showed up to see Kidd and Jackson executed a screen and took her out instead.

The best wag for generating funny news stories was Anna Benson. Though the last few headlines were not funny any more.

posted by rcade at 05:04 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

There's a cryptic comment in my link that suggests the Bruins got rid of Seguin because he slept with Nathan Horton's wife,

/Google: who is Nathan Horton's wife?

Goodness, gracious!

These "slept with team-mates wife" are almost like a meme now. I wouldn't put a lot of weight on it.

That's the feeling I get when I hear these things.
It's been around for as long as I've been a hockey fan.
Just on the Maple Leafs alone...

Gary Leeman supposedly slept with Al Iafrate's wife.
Shane Corson supposedly slept with Alex Mogilny's wife.
Joffrey Lupul supposedly slept with Dion Phaneuf's wife.

posted by grum@work at 04:10 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Montreal 7

Islanders 6

Chicago 5

Vancouver 7

Rangers 5

Detroit 6

St. Louis 6

Anaheim 5

Goal scorer: Ovechkin (Washington)

posted by jagsnumberone at 03:30 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Seguin was often misused as well. He shone in skill roles but he got stuck on the 3rd and 4th lines a lot it seems to me.

These "slept with team-mates wife" are almost like a meme now. I wouldn't put a lot of weight on it.

I wonder how Jim Benning feels? He's doing a great job in Vancouver but he probably didn't know the Boston opening would happen so soon.

posted by rumple at 03:08 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Jurgen Klopp leaving Dortmund at the end of the season.

posted by yerfatma at 03:06 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

if Marc Savard had've been healthy

Really good point. I know Don Sweeney has the makings of a good GM but this seems like an overreaction, which is doubly frustrating given the Jacobs' used to have a habit of doing the opposite.

posted by yerfatma at 02:41 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

If that all is true, the Bruins upper management knows it and Chiarelli's a sacrificial lamb.

I'm a degree of separation from it (hometown and all), but in addition to Horton, it was pretty clear to a bunch of people on the team that the combination of Marchand and Seguin off-ice at clubs had the potential to totally derail his career. Bad influences and all.

posted by dfleming at 02:35 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

The thing is - I don't think Chiarelli lacked the knowledge that Seguin could have been the guy he has been the last two years, but in Boston he just wasn't that guy when he was dealt. His work ethic and off-ice partying were the kind of thing that could go either way for a young player.

Perhaps he matured immediately or he just needed a different fit of friends/coaches, but Seguin looks a lot more like the guy everyone expected him to be when he was drafted #2 than the guy he was when he was dealt. There's a scenario like this for a lot of other young guys which doesn't end this way.

It's worth considering as well what the Bruins might've been the last 3-4 years if Marc Savard had've been healthy - to extract a clear #1 center from any roster in his prime and still building a very good team is worth noting.

posted by dfleming at 02:32 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

it's hard to objectively say Chiarelli did a poor job.

That's how I felt and one of the more even-headed Boston writers agreed but when you look at tommy's link, that is a pretty damning list of mis-steps. Admittedly it's not counter-weighted by the things he did right but it feels like Chiarelli's ability was to get 4 quarters for a dollar some times. There's a cryptic comment in my link that suggests the Bruins got rid of Seguin because he slept with Nathan Horton's wife, which would (Occam's Razor be damned) explain why Horton was so insistent on leaving town right after a Cup win: "this wasn't a monetary decision".

If that all is true, the Bruins upper management knows it and Chiarelli's a sacrificial lamb.

posted by yerfatma at 02:21 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Habs in 6
Caps in 7
Preds in 7
Canucks in 6
Rangers in 4
Lightning in 6
Blues in 6
Jets in 6

Goal scorer: Stamkos (TB)

posted by Ufez Jones at 02:18 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

They literally made the Chiarelli announcement 15 minutes after the verdict in the Hernandez case. Coincidence?

Chiarelli did a good job overall. Two finals, one cup. In the cap era it is really tough to keep good teams together. The trick is, like the Blackhawks, to have the right people in place when you have to get rid of the high priced guys. Losing Boychuk fits that model, without the replacement part. and the Hawks are going to be finding it tough with Toews and Kane's new contracts.

Losing Seguin, right now looks terrible. If he excels for a few more years it will look almost as bad the Neely trade in reverse. Maybe Brian Burke would be interested in a Lucic for Gaidreau deal?!

I mean, I hate the Bruins almost as much as the Leafs and Flyers, and I sure hope this is a start of a nice long period of mediocrity, but it's hard to objectively say Chiarelli did a poor job.

posted by rumple at 01:51 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Perhaps the Leafs will go out and get Chiarelli

Their current roster would be all in favor of same. Chiarelli would give many of them high-priced, long-term deals that could keep the Leafs irrelevant forever. He might even trade Phil Kessel back to Boston for a couple of bags of pucks.

posted by Howard_T at 01:34 PM on April 15

Aaron Hernandez convicted of 1st-degree murder

I can think of a few things to give him in a going away party. A copy of How to Win Friends and Influence People would be useful. A supply of Soap on a Rope is always handy in a prison environment. Perhaps some boxing lessons, a few "how-to"books on easily crafted weapons, and a contacts list of those who can supply certain contraband goods will serve him well.

posted by Howard_T at 01:22 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Perhaps the Leafs will go out and get Chiarelli just to avoid any future hoodwinks.

posted by dfleming at 01:06 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

Canadiens in 5
Islanders in 7
Blackhawks in 6
Vancouver in 6
Rangers in 5
Red Wings in 7
Blues in 5
Ducks in 6

Goal scorer: Tavares (Islanders)

posted by grum@work at 12:43 PM on April 15

Aaron Hernandez convicted of 1st-degree murder

They could bunk him with Rae Carruth first, since Carruth has a release date coming up in 2 1/2 years. Then onto Phillips, who will be in for a while.

Or better yet, spread the love and bunk these guys individually with James Holmes, Jared Lee Loughner, and a few other choice individuals.

posted by beaverboard at 12:38 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Boston Bruins fire G.M. Peter Chiarelli

posted by tommytrump at 12:29 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Now

If Spofi had a pickem lottery similar to the NHL draft lottery I'd be first up, so here goes ...

Ottawa in 6

Washington in 6

Chicago in 6

Calgary in 7

Rangers in 5

Tampa Bay in 6

St.Louis in 7

Winnipeg in 7

Goal scorer: Monahan (Calgary)

posted by cixelsyd at 12:25 PM on April 15

Former Bradford chairman linked to at least eight fires before Valley Parade disaster

Not to say this guy is a complete bastard or anything but at least one of the fires was set during a firemen's strike to avoid detection.

posted by yerfatma at 11:27 AM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

That's a great catch by Arenado but it also seems like a dumb one. He was taking a pretty big injury risk spinning across the tarp and into the stands.

posted by rcade at 11:19 AM on April 15