Recent Comments by Mr Bismarck

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

It's the fancy new sticks for this World Cup - the bails light up when they come off the stumps, (it looks cool in night games), and the stumps light up if they're hit by the ball.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:53 AM on March 24

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The first Cricket World Cup semi-final was played last night between New Zealand and South Africa and made for an exciting few hours.

A rain break in the middle of the South African innings meant the Duckworth-Lewis Method was invoked - something understood only by theoretical physicists and some members of Duckworth-Lewis.

New Zealand ended up chasing 298 to beat South Africa's 281 and the match went to the wire.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:08 AM on March 24

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

As a result, if England can get to +63 they will win the title because they have score more tries than the Irish. To do that, they have to beat France by 26 points.

England ended up winning 55-35 - thereby falling six points, (one converted try), short of the margin needed for the title.

As a result, the Irish defended their 2014 victory, while England finish second for the fourth Six Nations tournament in a row.

The full England-France match can be seen here, (starts at the anthems). Kick off is here.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:10 AM on March 22

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

The last round of the Six Nations is today, with three teams- Wales, Ireland and England - all tied at the top, meaning the destination of the title will be decided by points differential.

Before kick off, France could have won the title with a victory over England by at least eight points, combined with losses for Wales and Ireland, but both of those teams won.

Wales did their part early, by beating Italy 61-20, to end up with a +53 differential. Ireland then beat Scotland 40-10 to complete a Scottish whitewash, (they finish 0-5) and to move to the top of the table with a +63 differential.

As a result, if England can get to +63 they will win the title because they have score more tries than the Irish. To do that, they have to beat France by 26 points.

The score at halftime is England 27-15 France.

Heaven knows the French don't enjoy spoiling England's day...

posted by Mr Bismarck at 02:08 PM on March 21

Can popularity ruin a sport?

Really good article.

Rafa is one of those Germans who apologise that their English isn't so good.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:53 PM on March 19

Lewis Hamilton wins with ease in Australia as only 11 cars finish

Meanwhile, new Ferrari Team Principal Maurizio Arrivabene is a breath of fresh air. While Renault have gone backwards, (which takes some doing), Ferrari's engine is clearly a step up over last year and his attitude has been really great.

Firstly, he's been open to a technical relationship with the new Manor Marussia team, even though Ferrari is still owed money by the old Marussia team, but his quote on the subject was gold - "I said to Graeme, no money, no honey."

Then, during the race when the left rear wheel man couldn't get the nut threaded and Kimi Raikkonen had to pull over and retire from the race, Arrivabene went and found the gunman, to find out what happened and then, when everyone expected an ass-kicking, he just told him "stay calm, keep doing your job, it's going to be fine."

Then after the race when Renault Principal Christian Horner suggested the FIA might want to step in and even up the engines because Mercedes are too good, (and Red Bull even threatened to take their ball home and pull out of the sport), Arrivabene said "Our job is to attack Mercedes on the track. Not change the rules."

Having lived through the Schumacher/Ferrari domination, I'm still not ready to see Ferrari win another title, but this guy has been fun so far.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:23 PM on March 15

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

The Dolphins have traded Receiver Mike Wallace and a seventh round draft pick to the Minnesota Vikings for a fifth round draft pick.

This is a pure salary dump, as Wallace is due to get $12m next season. With Hartline and Gibson also released, the Dolphins don't have much for Tannehill to throw at next year, outside of 2014 draft pick Jarvis Landry and former Saint Kenny Stills who was acquired today for Danell Ellerbe and a draft pick, (another salary dump, this time of $6m).

Landry had a pretty good season, but isn't really #1 receiver material.

In vaguely-related news, I'm currently GMing the Dolphins in video game "Front Office Football 7" and life is copying me to a weird degree. Firstly, I franchised Charles Clay one night, then woke up the following morning to find the real Phins had done the same. Then I traded Wallace to the Vikings, straight up for a fourth rounder and then used the freed cap space to sign... Ndamukong Suh.

If Jeff Ireland was still in the role I'd suspect he was just copying me.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:52 AM on March 14

The NFL free-agency period begins with a slew of major moves

It was fun listening to this week's Grantland NFL podcast, as the Jimmy Graham and Sam Bradford trades were announced while they were taping.

This led Mays to say "I'm glad the thing I wrote today had a shelf life of 38 minutes."

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:25 AM on March 12

The NFL free-agency period begins with a slew of major moves

If Bradford doesn't work out they always have Sanchize.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 07:37 AM on March 11

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

"Who is going to be the first Herald scribe to dub Ndamukong "Miami Vice"?"

With Cameron Wake already being tabbed as "Earthwake", the correct names are clearly "Earthwake and Suhnami."

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:30 PM on March 09

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

yerfatma should be working for Football Outsiders, as the Pats just re-signed Devin McCourty.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:49 AM on March 09

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Good main event - one for boxing fans, in front of a crowd full of people who'd boo 15 rounds of Balboa-Creed.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:57 PM on March 07

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

That was a very reserved Broner performance. He didn't try to spin Molina around and there wasn't much posing. Hopefully the main event isn't as one-sided.

The main event I watched last week, (UFC), lasted 14 seconds. So I should at least to get to see more of something this weekend.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:52 PM on March 07

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Football Outsiders expect Gostkowski's franchising to lead to McCourty hitting Free Agency.

Meanwhile, the Bills traded for Cassel and then traded for the opportunity to give LeSean McCoy a third of their cap space.

Our division might be the Patriots + three clowns punching themselves in the face, but I hope Rex never leaves.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:07 AM on March 06

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Finally, I can dunk.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:31 AM on March 02

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

"helmets all the way down"

I've run into a few "NFL concept helmet" stories in the past couple weeks and my reaction to both has been "if you touch the Bengals helmet, I will cut you."

I actually didn't mind what they did with the background idea here :

The guy who did this series of concepts should probably stop.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:02 PM on February 25

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Best thing about that match was the Umpires taking everyone off for a 45 minute lunch break when the Kiwi's were about five minutes away from winning.

England really are dreadful at the one day game.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:49 AM on February 20

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

For further Calvinball, the full second round Six Nations match between Wales and Scotland is available on youtube here.

Anthems start here (always worth watching "Flower of Scotland" in Scotland).

Game starts here.

The game features an excellent beard-off, between Jake Ball and Geoff Cross.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:04 AM on February 18

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

You're right about the runner in the "end zone." Where you touch the ball down is where the kick has to be taken from, so if you score in the corner, then the kicker has to take the kick from way out on the sideline. The kicker can choose to move the ball back as far as he wants, to open the angle.

As a result, runners will get across the try line and then attempt to run under the posts before touching the ball down to make the conversion as easy as possible.

Unlike a touchdown a try actually has to be touched down, so if a defender can tackle you to the ground and keep you pinned and up so you can't down the ball then that isn't a score. It's quite rare and usually happens when an attacker is diving for the try line, rather than already over it, but the defenders will trot over anyway, just to keep you honest.

As for the penalty on the ground, (that mess of people is called a "Ruck"), there are several and can be called on both sides. Firstly, when you're tackled down you have to release the ball. When Wales screw up that throw in and the England forward intercepts he gets isolated and when tackled there's no one around to take the ball, so he holds it a fraction too long, hoping for his backs to catch up and gets penalised.

Later, one of the Welsh players gets called for reaching into a ruck and picking up the ball with a knee on the ground, because you aren't allowed to touch the ball unless you're supporting your own weight.

Rucks have a thousand rules around how you're allowed to join in, who's allowed to touch the ball and when and the offside rules in Rugby are labyrinthine to say the least.

I also really like how the officiating is done in Rugby Union. The Referee is in constant communication about what he's seeing and what he wants cleaned up. He clearly tells teams to keep their hands clear, or where they're not allowed to stand and he'll communicate infractions he has seen through a team's Captain... warning a Captain that he needs to have his player stop twisting the scrum or stop joining the ruck from the wrong angle, or stop this or that behaviour or it'll lead to a penalty.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 05:29 PM on February 07

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Full coverage of the opening Six Nations game between Wales and England is (currently) available on youtube, featuring an opening sequence by someone who's watched Game of Thrones.

[jokes about a red wedding goes here]

Anthems are at ~36 minutes, with the game starting at ~40 minutes.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:54 AM on February 07

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

The Six Nations starts tomorrow.

Last year, a decent England side beat Ireland, Wales and Scotland to claim the Triple Crown, but a fantastic performance in Paris took the title for Ireland. This year, the bookies have Ireland, England and Wales practically inseparable, even if partly because England have three home games.

Here's some footage of the 2014 championship.

Musical Montage Time.

Coverage is available on BeIn Sports in the US, or ESPN in Spanish in Central America, or your usual nefarious Other Sources'.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:40 PM on February 06

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Very large image of all Formula 1 cars 1950 to 2004.

That Cooper T66 was the first F1 car my Dad worked on, as an engineer for Phil Hill.

Here's some highlights from the British Grand Prix that year. Sadly they cut off way too early, as that was the only race Hill scored a point at in '64.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:30 PM on February 03

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

'Arry has resigned from QPR. Apparently because he needs a knee operation and not because his side are second bottom with the worst away record in the league since 1954.

If QPR are relegated back to the Football League at the end of the season, they're expected to face a fine of up to £40,000,000 for failing the League's football fair play rules during their one season there.

If they don't pay or renegotiate the fine they could be refused entry to the league and become the first club to be relegated from the Premier League all the way down into the Conference.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:09 AM on February 03

Patriots Win Super Bowl 0x31 After Epic Last-Second Interception

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:58 AM on February 02

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

On the one yard line with Marshawn on your team...

Pete Carroll finally won a Superbowl for the Patriots.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:02 PM on February 01

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Full set.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:00 AM on February 01

11 of 12 Patriots' Balls Deflated, ESPN Reports

"Rob Gronkowski is not afraid of making a buck off the situation."

Unrelatedly, I saw another Gronk shirt that said:

"Gronk know only three things :
Touchdowns and fucking."

Even as a Dolphins fan I almost bought that.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:25 AM on January 22

11 of 12 Patriots' Balls Deflated, ESPN Reports

Bill is furious to hear 11 of the 12 balls were underinflated.

He wants to know who didn't do their job with the 12th ball. That guy is fired.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 05:22 PM on January 21

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Yep, he gets the Bills' $4m for doing nothing. Or being an Offensive coach for Jacksonville. Whichever takes less work.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 04:21 PM on January 20

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Doug Marrone used his option to escape the Head Coach role in Buffalo, enabling him to take up an exciting new opportunity... as Offensive Line Coach in Jacksonville.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 02:29 PM on January 20

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

The Jets have hired Arizona DC, (and former Dolphins' interim head coach), Todd Bowles to be their new leader. Heaven knows hiring a defensive specialist hasn't gone wrong for them before.

Meanwhile, Rex Ryan finally gets his wish to lead a New York football team, as he's in in Buffalo.

In Florida, Miami Head Coach Joe Philbin cooked a pancake without burning it.

Prediction : New England to win the AFC East in 2015.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:15 AM on January 14

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Touching moment of sympathy from the Arsenal fans toward their visitors from Stoke today.

After the Emirates Stadium PA backed up Arsenal's third goal with the announcement that the trains back to Stoke had been cancelled, home fans all began to sing "you're shit and you can't get home."

posted by Mr Bismarck at 03:35 PM on January 11

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

This week in headlines that write themelves, former Miami Dolphin Fullback Rob Konrad fell of his boat in the Atlantic off the coast of Florida, then swam back to shore. Nine miles.

As you do.

He was swimming for twelve hours and treated for hypothermia and then released after being found on a beach at 4am.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 02:34 PM on January 09

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

At the start of the season I may have said out loud "Dallas will be lucky to win four games this year."

Clearly I underestimated how lucky they are.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 07:47 PM on January 04

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

"Biggest Play of the Year"

Neither of those videos are available in "my" country. Please describe them in text, using your best Skip Bayless tweet impression.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:22 PM on December 30

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Stay classy, Skip.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:01 AM on December 30

How Boxing Day Became a Highlight of the Sports Year

Ipswich won 4-2 at third placed Brentford, meaning we were top of the league for 10 minutes, before Bournemouth scored against Fulham.

Mick McCarthy is doing a fantastic job with a team that cost a total of 10,000. People are sniffing around Murphy (14 goals) and Mings (very comfortably replaced multi-million sale Aaron Cresswell), and we had offers in the summer for McGoldrick. If we lose those three then I suspect we'll slip backwards after January, so I have my fingers crossed the Chairman will decide we can afford to ignore offers, at least in this window.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:07 AM on December 27

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

I first bumped into Scott McLaughlin in online sim racer iRacing, where he was throwing the older Ford Falcon V8 Supercar about, (stick with it after they cut away from Scott-v-Scott, because it's going back to them a couple times). Turns out he was decent at that too.

Shane Van Gisbergen is another Aussie Kiwi who I first saw on iRacing before he appeared in the real life V8 series.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:42 AM on December 18

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

That's the same thing, right?

I'll show myself out.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:11 PM on December 17

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

That's good stuff.

Although it needs some "fucked it in first and gave her some Jandal!"

I'd be quite excited after this finish too.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:37 PM on December 17

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Exciting signing for the Devils.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 03:04 PM on December 15

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

A school holiday event is the only thing keeping me from that epic tilt at EverBank.

That's a shame. If you went in a white jersey you'd probably get to play.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 02:56 PM on December 15

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

So the Jacksonville Jaguars are favoured for an actual NFL football game.

It only took a matchup at home against the Titans' third string QB, playing behind two third stringers and a street free agent on the Offensive Line.

Considering how sloppy the short week fixtures can be, this is going to be the best Thursday Night game ever.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:14 PM on December 15

Bitcoin Bowl Brings Virtual Currency to St. Pete

Now we need a Dogecoin Bowl.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:28 AM on December 14

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Jeff Fisher sent six Rams players to midfield for the coin toss in today's victory over Washington.

They were the six players the Rams acquired with the draft picks obtained in the RGIII trade.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:43 PM on December 07

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Before yesterday's kick off, the Buccs were a win out of a possible first place and a loss out of a possible first overall draft pick.

Fortunately, the Raiders gave up 52 points to a true second coming of The Greatest Show On Turf in the form of offensive legends Shaun Hill, Steadman Bailey and Tre Mason.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 03:45 PM on December 01

FIFA Goal of the Year nominees

As the sole Ipswich fan around here, I'm honour bound to point out Mariner went the other way - south - to Arsenal. Our biggest deal with Liverpool was for Johnny Wark.

Of course, Wark's biggest deal was when he signed for a German Prison Camp to star in the movie Escape To Victory, with some lesser known footballers like Sylvester Stallone. And Pele.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:49 AM on November 16

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Minnows San Marino scored their first ever point in European Nations Cup Qualifying today, as they held Estonia to a 0-0 draw.

The result snapped San Marino's sixty-one game losing streak.

This put the cap on something of a good week for minnows, as Liechtenstein beat Moldova 1-0 and on Friday the Faroe Islands won 1-0 in Greece.

In the moral victory column you can find Gibraltar, who held reigning world champions Germany to "only" a 4-0 scoreline. Meaning Gibraltar are better than Brazil, right?

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:39 AM on November 16

FIFA Goal of the Year nominees

Of course, we all know the real goal of the year was scored by Ipswich Town's Under 14 academy team.

Or, to give them their proper name, Bluecelona.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 04:09 PM on November 14

FIFA Goal of the Year nominees

That Zlatan goal, (and most of his others), should always be shown with commentary, simply because it's great to hear other people react to unbelievable things.

This guy laughing is my favourite one for that goal.

OH HO HO!

posted by Mr Bismarck at 01:04 PM on November 14

World Cup inquiry clears Qatar but criticises English FA

The English are to blame for everything. I'm surprised we had time to ruin the World Cup bidding process while we were also setting up our grand international conspiracy to push Italians into Luis Suarez's mouth.

This is why we don't have an empire any more. Too busy.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 06:57 PM on November 13

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

For people who enjoy playing with silly nicknames, here's Optimus Grimes versus Megatron from yesterday's Detroit-Miami tilt.

There was one offensive pass interference call on Calvin Johnson in the first half where he bumped Grimes and Grimes bounced off him like a small child, but he went on to have about as good a game on Calvin as you can expect from someone giving up seven inches and 46 lbs.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:26 AM on November 10

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

This game would be closer if the Packers were playing against actual bears.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:38 PM on November 09

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

After today's games, the English Premier League's Top Five features Southampton, West Ham and Swansea.

Arsenal, Man United, Liverpool and Spurs are all closer in points to last placed Burnley than first placed Chelsea.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 12:57 PM on November 09

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

The Washington Football Team have started doing their own jokes now - on the way to the game yesterday their two team buses crashed. Into each other.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:59 AM on November 03

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

There's a lot of automation in those and sometimes it goes wrong. Today on a long incompletion from Matt Moore, Mike Wallace was credited with a catch for minus 41 yards.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:08 PM on November 02

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Knowing they were facing a rookie Quarterback, the Buccaneers threw some defensive looks at the Vikings that Bridgewater had not seen before.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:32 AM on October 29

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

The part of the academy that agreed deals for Enner Valencia and Sakho for the same amount that Liverpool paid for Balotelli.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 09:50 PM on October 26

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

When you sack the backup Quarterback while losing by 25 points, you probably shouldn't celebrate.

Especially if you then injure yourself doing so.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 04:17 PM on October 26

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The Out Of The Park Baseball developers used the 2015 version of their game to run the upcoming World Series five times.

The first series went six games. All the others went seven.

I won't spoil the projected winner, but I will say they posted the stats generated by the five series in a big google doc. If only we knew anyone who liked that sort of thing.

Interestingly, the overall losing team scored more runs across the five series and had a better ERA from the starters and the bullpen.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:35 AM on October 21