Recent Comments by andrewraff

Closure.

If they were willing to play in Europe or low paying minor leagues for less money, then why couldn't they take a cut in the NHL The players did offer to take a large pay cut (24%). But the players are opposed to a salary cap. But with a salary cap, if team revenues go up, the owner sees that as pure profit and doesn't have to pay the players any more than the maximum cap amount. In theory, a cap allows small market teams like Tampa Bay and Calgary to compete with big market teams like New York (Rangers) and Chicago. But with the players willing to accept a cap and it appearing like both sides were reaching towards a compromise figure, wtf went was behind the League's decisiomaking? "We've already scheduled the press conference, we can't leave the journalists hanging to wait around for more negotiations, let's cancel the season"? But now the NHL is officially over as a "Big 4" league on par with the NFL, NBA or MLB and at best second rate. Well done!

posted by andrewraff at 02:39 PM on February 16

NHL Award Nominees Named.

Luongo deserves serious consideration for the Vezina. He saw a LOT of pucks flying at him this year. Imagine what the Panthers season would have been like if Luongo hadn't played spectacularly? However, Brodeur has a legit chance of repeating. For the Hart, probably St. Louis. Possibly Iginila. Not Brodeur (sorry, Marty.) Norris: Niedermayer. Chara proved that he's not just a freakishly tall hockey player, but a damn good freakishly tall hockey player. However, Niedermayer was consistently the best player on the Devils, put in a lot of minutes and stepped up big time to lead by example without Stevens. Adams: Wilson. Who expected San Jose to make the playoffs? with the second seed? Calder: Raycroft.

posted by andrewraff at 05:16 PM on April 21

Yankees, Nets and Devils agree to split up

The objectionable part of the Nets arena plan in Brooklyn is not the arena itself, which will be built over railyards. The arena is just one part of a large development project, which will include a number of large office towers. The city hopes to use its power of eminent domain to get land to build these office towers. Presumably, the revenue from those buildings will enable Ratner to afford to run the Nets profitably. For the Nets, downtown Brooklyn is a much more desirable location than the Meadowlands. Of course, just about anyplace in the NY Metro area (with the possible exception of Staten Island) is a better location than the Meadowlands.

posted by andrewraff at 11:20 AM on March 24

The NHL is sinking.

Besides limiting the size of goalie pads, the two changes which would do the most to open up the game would be to eliminate the red line and adopt the international-size rink. Increasing the size of the rinks would really open up the game (more like European play rather than North American), but would force teams to give up some arena capacity, so it's a no-go with the owners. Too bad. I don't understand the logic behind the goalie puck-handling rule. Watching some older clips (during all-star weekend coverage), the goalie equipment was so much smaller.

posted by andrewraff at 09:33 PM on February 10

nets fire byron scott

That Scott is the all-time winningest coach in Nets history doesn't really say much. The Nets have a long and ignominious tradition of losing....

posted by andrewraff at 01:01 PM on January 26

Bob Hope's dead

The Smoking Gun has CNN's ready-to-go obits

posted by andrewraff at 12:02 PM on July 29

"I hope I can do a better job than Mr. Bettman,"

Even though the NHL has expanded so much in the last 10 years or so, I don't think the talent level has dropped off because of the influx of talented players from Europe. I do think that Hull could do a better job than Bettman. I'd like to see many of those rule changes adopted in the NHL, particularly eliminating the red line, which would do the most towards opening up the ice with the fewest changes. Adopting the Olympic sized ice would help opening up the game, too. I'd rather see more power plays than more penalty shots. While penalty shots are dramatic (and make for good highlights on SportsCenter), a 2 minute power-play provides more excitement over a longer period of time. As far as penalizing for trapping, how do they intend to do that? "2 minute minor for playing good positional, defensive hockey." make it harder for teams to trap, by eliminating the redline and making the ice larger, and the game will open up on its own.

posted by andrewraff at 12:36 PM on July 16

Officiating a huge factor?

A couple of years ago (I think 2000-2001, when they went on to lose to the Avs in the finals), the Devils were the highest-scoring team in the NHL...

posted by andrewraff at 10:30 PM on May 06

Lack of star power may leave Flyers short.

oops, forgot to note that this is via PuckUpdate

posted by andrewraff at 01:47 PM on April 28

"We didn't play the Danish for 57 years,"

The World Championships are the NIT to the Stanley Cup's NCAA tournament.

posted by andrewraff at 12:54 PM on April 27

The NHL Playoff match-ups are finally set

East Ottawa - Lon Gisland. The Islanders have been on a roll, a losing roll. Ottawa is too fast. Senators in 4. NJ - Boston. Brodeur and the Devils' defense are the difference. Devs in 6. Tampa - Washington. Jagr isn't playing like Jagr. Khabibulin is the difference. Tampa in 7. Philly - Toronto. This should be a nasty series. Philly has the offense, but Belfour's been having a good year. Leafs in 7. West Dallas - Edmonton. How many playoff teams trade away their top players at the deadline? Stars in 5. Detroit - Anaheim. I just can't pick the team called the Mighty Ducks. Wings in 7. Colorado - Minnesota. Roy. Forsberg. Sakic. 'Nuff said. Av in 6. Vancouver - St. Louis. Osgood is the answer? Naslund and the Canucks in 6.

posted by andrewraff at 03:34 PM on April 09

USA Today ranks the Ten Hardest Things to do in Sports.

The Tour de France should probably be ranked higher than 8th. 3 weeks, steep mountains, high speeds, and may be the supreme test of endurance in the world of sports.

posted by andrewraff at 01:48 PM on March 10

Down time.

and, tieguy, not all of the teams going bankrupt are good. For example: Buffalo.

posted by andrewraff at 10:47 PM on March 05

Down time.

American sports would be better off if we had relegation. Baseball should definately consider it, since they want to contract. The problem is that it would affect the dynamic of the minor leagues as MLB's farm system. I don't know what this would do for the way that teams manage their prospects and players getting called up to the Big Leagues. The same dynamic exists in hockey. Football and Basketball don't really have minor leagues, since their farm system is the college teams. While the Bengals might possibly be competitive in college ball, it would require ending the fiction that these are student-athletes... Practical considerations aside, American pro sports would be much more interesting with relegation...

posted by andrewraff at 10:45 PM on March 05

While linemen and backs play most of the game, mentally, the kicker's game is tougher. The kickers sit on the sideline for 90-95% of the game, come in at a high pressure situation and not make mistakes. If the kicking screws up once or twice in a game (cough...Giants...cough), you notice more than a single missed block or dropped pass.

posted by andrewraff at 09:15 PM on February 03

Say it Ain't So, Wayne.

Maybe he's trying to break Gordie Howe's record of playing in consecutive decades...

posted by andrewraff at 12:52 PM on August 05

Charlotte will beat NJ in 6 What are the chances the a carolina team will beat a NJ team in 6 games in the playoffs twice within one month? (Devils lost to Carolina Hurricanes already)

posted by andrewraff at 02:13 PM on May 06

Charlotte will beat NJ in 6 What are the chances the a carolina team will beat a NJ team in 6 games in the playoffs twice within one month? (Devils lost to Carolina Hurricanes already)

posted by andrewraff at 02:03 PM on May 06

The Man Show with balls

I'd rather watch sportscenter 4 times in a row. And thanks to the wonderful people at ESPN, you can!

posted by andrewraff at 01:19 PM on April 29

I'm sure Steinbrenner fired someone that quickly...

posted by andrewraff at 10:03 AM on April 09

Mookie Wilson: Truck-drivin' man.

Hermann Meier was a bricklayer. Then he decided to become a world cup skier....

posted by andrewraff at 01:14 PM on March 22

SF Giants' 2B Jeff Kent breaks his wrist at a self-serve car wash,

where Gus Frerotte, when he was with the Skins, headbutted the wall after scoring a touchdown, and knocking himself loopy for a few weeks. That is easily one of my favs. It still makes me laugh. :)

posted by andrewraff at 02:20 PM on March 04

NHL Third Jerseys.

New Jersey doesn't have a third jersey, right? There's a minor bit of irony in there. I think the Rangers third jersey (statue of liberty) is very cool. And yes, the Avs third jersey is a ripoff of the Ranger's normal jerseys.

posted by andrewraff at 02:17 PM on March 04

Is short track a ridiculous sport? Hell yeah, that's why it's so entertaining. In what other sport is staying in DEAD LAST until the end a brilliant strategy to win a gold medal? As for NBC's coverage and biases, they were useless and obvious. The alpine skiing coverage was so incomplete to be comical and so jingoistic to be annoying. Feh. The only thing enjoyable about NBC's coverage was the color commentator for men's bobsledding. He was so overly enthusiastic that he was entertaining.

posted by andrewraff at 04:43 PM on February 26

They used that system for hockey in the Stanley Cup finals last year. I think they installed it at the Meadowlands for the games in NJ (or was it for the games in Denver?)

posted by andrewraff at 04:42 PM on February 14

Where the sports are.

Not only is Green Bay, by far the smallest metro area to have a team, but their team is also run the most sensibly for the fans. Tuesday Morning QB: "Offseason renovations at Green Bay's Lambeau Field will reduce the number of luxury boxes and increase general seating. "

posted by andrewraff at 01:10 PM on February 13

Monday is the expansion draft

Texas could build a team with enough quality players to be a contender from the expansion draft... but they probably wouldn't be able to afford it under the salary cap. Many of the players on the table, such as Jessie Armstead or Bill Romanowski are exposed because their cap prices are quite high. I think the Texans would be much better off a few years down the line if they pass up on most of the expensive veterans, and build a team around a few solid drafts and selected tactical free agent pickups...

posted by andrewraff at 01:04 PM on February 13