Recent Comments by cixelsyd

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Are you suggesting that political concerns will trump the desire to play in the World Cup for some players?

Personal safety concerns . I suppose these do evolve from the current political mess.

Do players professional teams have the right to prohibit a player from World Cup competition?

posted by cixelsyd at 01:28 PM on July 21

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

He is leaving international competition at the top of his game. Also the first of many who will express no intention to participate in Russia.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:39 PM on July 21

CFL Pick 'Em, Week 5

Edmonton by 10

BC by 10

Ottawa by 3

Saskatchewan by 7

posted by cixelsyd at 09:27 PM on July 20

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

What are they Espys?

posted by cixelsyd at 09:51 PM on July 16

CFL Pick 'Em, Week 4

Edmonton by 7

Toronto by 7

Calgary by 17

Montreal by 7

posted by cixelsyd at 06:16 PM on July 14

LeBron James Returning to Cleveland

LeBron is tired of being the villain and wants to be the hero again

Not possible.

Maybe he can be a hero in Cleveland if he doesn't repeat his previous antics there of consistently blaming his teammates, coaches, and management for failure.

Hopefully any future articles about LeBron are about his excellence on the court. He needs to get over himself and focus on the game. He has proven that he is probably the most talented player the NBA has ever seen. But he does get beat in big moments by players with less talent and a better mindset. That never happened to Jordan. Never happened to Bird or Magic or a long list of others.

posted by cixelsyd at 07:19 PM on July 13

Germany Wins World Cup

What fabulous touch to finish that pass.

Right player at the right place ... pretty certain a striker who played the entire contest doesn't have enough left in the tank to control the ball and make that play.

posted by cixelsyd at 06:55 PM on July 13

CFL Pick 'Em, Week 3

Winnipeg by 7

Edmonton by 10

Calgary by 10

Saskatchewan by 18

posted by cixelsyd at 10:37 AM on July 09

Brazil Faces Germany for Spot in World Cup Final

Less talented teams can be successful. For years the Italians suffered on the front line because of ratios in their professional leagues that resulted in most of the "talent positions" being staffed by foreigners. The Italians weakness was offense. But in World play they realized this and adjusted their game to control the ball and allow their opponents virtually no opportunities. No matter how limited the Italians were they were never considered out of any contest, and they actually won a World Cup with said limitations.

In any sport you need to address the strengths and weaknesses of your squad and adjust accordingly. I believe Brazil had far more talent than many squads this year (including the US), but dependency on legacy rather than focus on reality did them in.

Did Brazil's coach actually make it to the press conference?

Do you think the talent on that squad loses 7 - 1 with Klinsmann at he helm? I think US soccer is in good shape for the next Cup. A few more athletes is all that is missing.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:25 PM on July 08

Brazil Faces Germany for Spot in World Cup Final

The post-game crew seemed to be crediting Germany as much as criticizing Brazil for the loss. I think that's way too generous to Brazil. They were a disaster on defense, leaving multiple players wide open.

Germany methodically chews up opponents that fail to execute their defensive responsibilities. To beat them will require sustained offensive pressure on the German weakness which this year is also the defenders. Germany does execute a slick defensive system employing their keeper, who is second to none in this role, but opponents speed on the front line is their poison.

Brazil historically has relied upon their speed and athleticism advantages to subdue opponents. They had neither this year and would have been better off employing the same strategy Klinsmann did against the Germans.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:36 PM on July 08

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

I present to you, probably the dumbest lawsuit in MLB fan history

Now there is some doubt being cast on the legitimacy of the lawsuit even existing. It may well be a prank

No, it's all true. Terms of the lawsuit are that he wants season tickets for life, a padded reclining seat, and a blanky.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:54 AM on July 08

Michael Bradley Covered Most Ground in World Cup

He turned the ball over because he had no support on the squad. Bradley and Jones were the only players to consistently pressure offensively all tournament. Add the fact that the US employed an 11 back defensive strategy that gave him less room to operate and had him covering much more ground than opponents.

Bradley is a world class player on a developing team.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:44 PM on July 02

CFL Pick 'Em, Week 2

Winnipeg by 10

BC by 7

Edmonton by 10

Saskatchewan by 17

posted by cixelsyd at 06:10 PM on July 02

The 10th Annual chicobangs Memorial SpoFi CFL Pick 'Em

Not many points handed out last night, I guess.

The Argos D handed out lots of points.

oh .. you meant in the pool

posted by cixelsyd at 03:51 PM on June 27

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Mavs are such a well run organization otherwise it's a shame they don't put more emphasis on the draft.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:03 AM on June 27

LeBron Taking His Talents Out of South Beach

it's more about the organization than the player

Mostly true. The Spurs excellence is in identifying the types of personalities it needs to be competitive over the longer term. But the Spurs don't win 5 titles if Duncan (and others) are allowed to become more focused on their own situations than considering what is best for the team.

A prime example on the flip side is the Kobe and Shaq Lakers. A pretty good chance that team wins another 3 championships if it stays together. Along with 2 of the most talented players in the NBA that team had a roster with top notch role players. The organization did a great job of identifying which pieces to add but the stars essentially destroyed what management had created.

posted by cixelsyd at 01:36 PM on June 25

The 10th Annual chicobangs Memorial SpoFi CFL Pick 'Em

Argos by 7

Calgary by 7

BC by 7

Hamilton by 3

BTW, does anyone know which SIRIUS channel will be carrying CFL games? From the CFL site:

Every regular and post-season game as well as the 101st Grey Cup Championship will be available to Sirius and XM subscribers on channel.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:57 AM on June 25

Luis Suarez Bites Opponent at World Cup

Pretty good evidence there for a suspension. Guy appears to be the Lucic of soccer.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:12 PM on June 24

Luis Suarez Bites Opponent at World Cup

It's ironic that Chiellini stayed down forever after phantom injuries and popped right back up after the bite

It's soccer reality unfortunately. And it ruins the game. There is as much emphasis by players on drawing bogus calls as there is on actual play. Most especially if a team is down by a goal late in the match.

Someone ought to keep stats on individual players and teams and chart who and how many times a player goes to the ground and what the score was at the time.

posted by cixelsyd at 04:34 PM on June 24

LeBron Taking His Talents Out of South Beach

If he wants to win a championship in Miami he needs to opt out and resign at a lower salary so the Heat can buy a better supporting cast. Miami is also his best bet to get to another championship as the eastern conference is horrible. $20 Million is pocket change for LeBron.

If he is after money he can go somewhere that he eats a good portion of the player budget and have no chance of being competitive.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:31 AM on June 24

Keeper Guillermo Ochoa Saves Mexico's Tocino

Don't think I ever seen that many quality saves in a match even if some were directly at Ochoa. Brazilian tender had a few good stops as well.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:49 PM on June 17

The San Antonio Spurs beat the Miami Heat 4-1 to win the NBA championship.

Agreed. Jordan had Grant, Kerr, Pippen, Rodman and others who had well defined roles at a different position than Jordan. All were considered amongst the top in the league at what they did, and all were complimentary players. Ditto the Kobe / Shaq Lakers with Horry, Fox, Fischer and others.

While the Wade / Bosh / LeBron combination is probably the most talented trio of all time, they all play a similar offensive game (outside the key with the ball facing the basket) and have limited supporting talent.

posted by cixelsyd at 01:52 PM on June 16

The San Antonio Spurs beat the Miami Heat 4-1 to win the NBA championship.

The Heat employ the Phil Jackson offensive strategy: get the best players and the sole focus is to isolate them on their defenders. It's imperative your stars are more talented than than the opposition and they must perform at a high level. A very small percentage of your roster gets 80 plus percentage of the touches on offense.

LeBron is still the most talented player alive but Leonard was the better all around player this series. The Heat got nothing from anyone not named LeBron. Spurs held multiple double digit leads when their best players had off games including last night when Parker hadn't made a shot and had only 1 assist late into the 3rd quarter.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:31 PM on June 16

The 2014 World Cup is Here

Hmmm .. is that a +1.5 gladness or a it would suck if Brazil won because of an NBA-like homer call? Or both?

posted by cixelsyd at 09:41 PM on June 12

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

to continue to be so visibly represented by someone like Don Cherry

Cherry is quite the character, but we'll keep him. He still presents interesting commentary on the game.

Before posting did you consider that mainstream US Hockey broadcasts center around Mike Milbury and Pierre McGuire? Yikes.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:04 PM on June 10

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em, Stanley Cup Round

Moore ... Rangers have 2. Dominic or John?

posted by cixelsyd at 03:48 PM on June 04

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em, Stanley Cup Round

LA in 6 (more Canadian players on the roster than NYR) +1

Series MVP : Doughty, LA

Goal Scorer: Williams, LA +1

Point Scorer: Kopitar, LA

Penalty Minutes: Pouliot, NYR

Most Ice Time: Doughty, LA (assuming this is non-goaltender player)

posted by cixelsyd at 02:43 PM on June 04

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

More Jon Bois' EA Sports "journalism" goodness (via Metafilter), on the impending death of basketball

Need to be in an altered state to digest that article .. Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard entering the Hall of Fame? Wade playing beyond 2015?

posted by cixelsyd at 12:01 AM on June 04

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

This all feels like a tautology that grum cannot win

Tautology? Not really, just opinions like everyone has here. And a far cry better than trollology ...

Goalie wins with at least 50 shots against, since 2010-11 season

Reimer does head that list. The stats pretty much prove that the Leafs are giving up huge numbers of shots and getting bailed out by the goaltenders, who ever they may be. In general, the Leafs most solid position currently is goal.

posted by cixelsyd at 03:06 PM on May 23

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

like Parker and Ginobili

Hold on there ... no mention of Tim Duncan, who is likely the best all around big man of all time?

posted by cixelsyd at 11:28 PM on May 22

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Enjoy the Spurs while you have them

Low maintenance superstars all over the roster who prefer winning over personal accolades. Basketball purists love 'em.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:03 PM on May 22

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Great stats grum, as usual.

But I think they only prove Reimer isn't such a bad option for a team needing an upgrade. Be willing to bet Reimer's name heads a listing of goalies who have won games where his team was badly outshot and outplayed. Reinforces my amazement of how Carlyle and TO media dump on the guy ... he's been better at his position than anyone else on the roster.

Further, the Leafs give up an amazing number of quality shots, not just quantity. Goalies like Lundqvist, Price, and Quick are solid but they just need to do their jobs and can count on defense and forwards to clear rebounds and prevent opponents from getting quality chances / second chances.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:35 PM on May 22

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

His confidence is shot ...

Pretty much any goalie whose coach consistently lays blame on him for giving up 3 goals on 47 shots wouldn't feel very confident. Not saying the guy is Tretiak, but give him a chance behind a team with some attention to defense and he'll do OK. No more evidence of that required than Bryzgalov with the Wild.

posted by cixelsyd at 01:36 PM on May 21

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Reimer played behind the worst defensive team in professional hockey with the Leafs and still carried them to game 7 against the Bruins.

By the way, guess which goaltender holds the all time record for save percentage in a season for Toronto?

posted by cixelsyd at 12:06 PM on May 21

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Penguins lost 2-1 in the 7th game of a series against the 2nd best goalie in the world (Price is #1). The coach is not the problem. A healthy roster, a few big forwards to minimize the pounding Crosby and the other skilled players take, and an upgrade in goal (James Reimer?) delivers the cup to Pittsburgh next year.

Hiring Tortorella will yield a higher draft position ...

posted by cixelsyd at 12:11 AM on May 21

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em, Round 3


posted by cixelsyd at 10:40 AM on May 20

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Not minimizing Cooke, he's a wart on the game. There are many others that also fit into the same category. Hockey would be much better without all of them.

Interesting how the NHL gives 20 game suspensions for 1st offenses of performance enhancing substances when 3 and 5 game suspensions are the norm for players like Cooke and others who repeatedly intentionally injure opponents.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:40 AM on May 16

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle


Cooke, Bertuzzi, Lucic, Thornton, Torres, etc. ... any one of these repeat offenders getting a lengthy suspension would send a message.

Cooke is not the precedent in his actions. If he BECOMES the precedent by receiving severe punishment which in turn prevents future goonery I'm all for that.

As I would be if it were any of the other players in the league who exist solely because goonery is not punished.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:01 PM on May 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

The "You can't do anything about Egregious Offender until all other transgressions, no matter how minor, have been addressed" is not a valid argument

Not my argument at all.

The original inference was that Cooke is setting the precedence, when many players before Cooke and now during Cooke's tenure have been given the same slap on the wrist treatment for major infractions of the rules and deliberate intent to injure opponents. Cooke has nothing to do with precedence here.

posted by cixelsyd at 02:56 PM on May 15

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle


posted by cixelsyd at 02:48 PM on May 15

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

The players need to be hounding the NHLPA to be putting pressure on the league. Cooke's setting a precedence that you can be as dirty as you want and still have a long and prosperous NHL career.

The precedence is set by the NHL's lack of disciplinary action, not by Cooke.

Singling out Cooke is incorrect, as many other players (Lucic, Thornton, Torres are a few notables) who are otherwise ineffective without playing over the line of the rules have received passes from the league.

I agree the NHLPA needs to take action to force the NHL to maintain the integrity of the game as the NHL has failed doing so.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:18 PM on May 14

Gay Athlete Michael Sam Drafted by St. Louis

He played in the SEC, which is the toughest conference in the FBS.

Based on media rankings, maybe.

I do believe that SEC rosters are the strongest in College football. (I also believe SEC teams avoid playing good out of conference opponents which artificially inflates their ratings, but relevant only to my challenge of rcade's statement and not the issue here.)

I believe having 18.5 sacks has a lot to do with the roster he played with.

NFL teams could care less about a player's sexual orientation, skin color, favorite music, or anything else outside of what they deliver on the field. Teams drafted the likes of Moss, Hernandez, Pac Man, and a huge list of others based solely upon the fact they were studs on the field.

If Clowney declared he was gay he still would have gone first overall.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:41 PM on May 11

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em, Round 2


My picks:

PIT in 7
CHI in 6 +2
LA in 7 +2
MON in 7 +2

posted by cixelsyd at 04:09 PM on May 01

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

NBA scouting eh? I'm sure a recording device and skill at using it is a valuable asset in a scouting job.

Surprised he wasn't hired by the Patriots first.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:24 PM on April 30

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Lucic was fined $5,000 for intentionally spearing Dekeyser in the crotch.

Lucic is just trying to find out what balls actually feel like. Give the guy a break.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:08 PM on April 19

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em, Round 1


Boston in 6 +1

Tampa in 6

Pittsburgh in 6 +2

New York in 7 +2


Anaheim in 6 +2

Chicago in 7 +1

Los Angeles in 6 +1

Colorado in 7 +2

Total: 10 points

posted by cixelsyd at 06:51 PM on April 16

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

I don't think anyone is so annoyed by it to stop watching the sport

Guess my vote was a spoiled ballot.

Seriously, I'll watch World Cup playoff matches, but nothing else. For me the whole pace and feel of the game gets destroyed at every flop.

posted by cixelsyd at 06:21 PM on April 15

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Wow, go UConn. What a totally unexpected run they've had this month.

Best guards in the country by a mile, great defence, great coaching. Kentucky has 8 players that would start, had they enrolled at UConn, in front of everyone but Napier.

This guy could have helped by staying at UConn. Not just UConn, but his own future. Blew a chance to go first round.

Knucklehead move.

posted by cixelsyd at 06:52 PM on April 06

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Boo on Connecticut for mucking up the works in the NCAA

Appears UConn has found another coach who can draw blood from a stone. And to pull off that game against a well balanced Izzo coached squad yet.

At this point I reluctantly believe nobody can stop Kentucky. Too much talent, too much size, and for the first time in ages playing almost like a basketball team.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:50 AM on March 31

DeSean Jackson released by the Eagles

Hernandez has taught them well

Taught them how to disassociate the organization from accepting any responsibility. The Patriots brass sole focus is on winning. Expect Jackson to have a visit soon.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:25 PM on March 30

Detroit Tigers, Miguel Cabrera agree to 8 year extension

Guess I missed the news about Brian Cashman moving to the Tigers this offseason.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:40 AM on March 28

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Defenders on that goal look as if the play was scripted. Nice run, though.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:12 AM on March 26

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Pretty much an annual headline recently ....

"X pulls off the biggest upset in the tournament beating Duke"

Which isn't really accurate at all. They were a 4th place team in their conference losing to another conference's regular season and tournament champion and the only way the term upset can be applied is the initial seeding of the 2 teams. Duke is perennially over rated by 3 or 4 seeds.

posted by cixelsyd at 03:31 PM on March 21

Enter the SportsFilter NCAA Bracket Contest

which has a 1 in 9.2 quintillion chance of happening

Made the mistake of using a Chevy Cobalt platform for my time machine (couldn't afford the DeLorean) and lost the whole damn thing to an ignition switch malfunction.

We'll meet at the border, grum

Be careful, H - grum is known to support a terrorist organization .. The Leafs, who have been terrorizing their fans for decades.

posted by cixelsyd at 05:06 PM on March 18

Enter the SportsFilter NCAA Bracket Contest

I'm in.

Odds of me winning the Spofi pool are about the same.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:59 AM on March 18

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Interesting, as some members of the Jets have quit sports as well.

posted by cixelsyd at 02:29 PM on March 17

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

No Big East or ex-Big East team has a top notch squad this year. Louisville might have garnered consideration if Chane Behanan hadn't got kicked out of the program.

Still not surprising that the most of the teams from last year's Big East are at the top of their conferences.

posted by cixelsyd at 02:11 PM on March 16

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Virginia has been the only team in the ACC that has played consistently well all year. Carolina either plays like the best team in the country or like a division 2 team, Duke is good at home but plays well below their talent level otherwise, and Syracuse has had some bad injuries down the stretch.

posted by cixelsyd at 06:07 PM on March 14

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Broncos will easily fill Decker's role and have a few million per year to devote to areas of true weakness.

posted by cixelsyd at 02:42 PM on March 14

Cowboys Release DeMarcus Ware

You thinking closer to 5-11 this year

Dallas Cowboys 2014 Schedule

Home: New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers, New Orleans Saints, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts

Away: New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, St. Louis Rams, Seattle Seahawks, Chicago Bears, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans

Cowboys benefit from playing in a division where the best team, the Eagles, are at best progressing along a rebuild effort. Redskins and Giants are at or nearing rock bottom. Six games against that level of competition has got to yield 3 wins for any NFL team.

Jacksonville, Houston - another 2 probable wins.

St.Louis, Chicago, and Tennessee would not be major upsets but wouldn't expect more than 1 win.

5 - 11 or 6 -10 sounds about right.

posted by cixelsyd at 04:52 PM on March 12