Recent Comments by bender

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em: Stanley Cup Final

Nashville in 6
Longest Game: 1 OT
First Goal By: Evgeni Malkin
Conn Smythe Winner: Pekka Rinne
Player With Most Goals: James Neal
Player With Most Assists: Sidney Crosby
Player With Best +/-: Filip Forsberg
Player With Most Penalty Minutes: Evgeni Malkin
Goalie With Best Save %: Pekka Rinne
Tiebreaker: 34

posted by bender at 11:52 PM on May 28

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Even kids know how bad losing to the Padres is.

posted by bender at 05:32 PM on May 19

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Third Round

Golden State in 6, Steph Curry, Draymond Green +1 +1 +1
Cleveland in 6, LeBron James, LeBron James

posted by bender at 10:43 PM on May 14

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em: Third Round

Nashville in 6 +2
Ellis
Rinne

Pittsburgh in 7 +2
Malkin +1
Fleury

posted by bender at 09:09 PM on May 12

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Nashville in 6
Pittsburgh in 7

posted by bender at 11:19 AM on May 12

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Second Round

Washington in 6, John Wall
Cleveland in 4, LeBron James +2 +1
San Antonio in 6, James Harden +2
Golden State in 4, Stephen Curry +2

posted by bender at 11:55 AM on April 30

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em: Second Round

Nashville in 5, Viktor Arvidsson +1
Anaheim in 5, Connor McDavid +1
Ottawa in 7, Bobby Ryan +1
Washington in 6, Nicklas Backstrom

posted by bender at 03:03 PM on April 25

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Today

Cleveland in 4, LeBron James +2 +1
Toronto in 6, DeMar DeRozan +2
San Antonio in 5, Kawhi Leonard +1 +1
Los Angeles Clippers in 5, Gordon Hayward
Washington in 7, John Wall +1
Golden State in 4, Stephen Curry +2 +1
Boston in 5, Isaiah Thomas +1 +1
Oklahoma City in 6, Russel Westbrook +1

posted by bender at 12:19 PM on April 15

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Tonight

Boston in 6
Pittsburgh in 5 +1
Edmonton in 5 +1
New York Rangers in 4 +1
Minnesota in 7
Washington in 4 +1
Anaheim in 5 +1
Nashville in 6 +1
Ovechkin

posted by bender at 03:52 PM on April 12

NBA Pick 'Em Week 25: All the Marbles Edition

SLAM Indiana by 13 SLAM
SLAM Portland by 15 SLAM

posted by bender at 01:17 PM on April 12

What if Barry Bonds had played without a bat?

+1

posted by bender at 09:33 PM on April 11

NBA Pick 'Em Week 25: All the Marbles Edition

Yes! Last week's lock 'em all gamble paid off. Let it ride!

SLAM Minnesota by 8 SLAM
SLAM Sacramento by 5 SLAM

posted by bender at 04:35 PM on April 11

NBA Pick 'Em Week 24: Westbrook Triple Double Edition

SLAM San Antonio by 8 SLAM
SLAM Toronto by 13 SLAM
SLAM Washington by 6 SLAM
SLAM Los Angeles Clippers by 8 SLAM

posted by bender at 12:02 PM on April 08

NBA Pick 'Em Week 24: Westbrook Triple Double Edition

SLAM Atlanta by 5 SLAM
SLAM Portland by 5 SLAM

posted by bender at 08:48 AM on April 06

NBA Pick 'Em Week 24: Westbrook Triple Double Edition

SLAM Boston by 4 SLAM
SLAM LA Clippers by 12 SLAM

posted by bender at 03:34 PM on April 05

Penn State Trustee 'Running Out of Sympathy' for Victims

And I am running out of sympathy for Penn State. I haven't read enough about this to know who exactly did or didn't know something, but it is clear that Sandusky's actions were no secret and could have been stopped. Even *if* Spanier didn't know and isn't directly culpable for the inaction, attacking the victims is ludicrous.

posted by bender at 01:51 PM on April 02

World Cup 2026: Fifa reveals allocation for 48-team tournament

CONCACAF also six (no more Hex?)

I assume CONCACAF will go to a double Hex with 3 teams through from each. Of course that means that USA-Mexico WCQs will no longer happen...

posted by bender at 03:55 PM on March 30

NBA Pick 'Em Week 23: Better Not Rest Your Starters Edition

SLAM Cleveland by 13 SLAM
Houston by 5
SLAM Golden State by 21 SLAM
San Antonio by 9
Boston by 8
SLAM San Antonio by 12 SLAM

posted by bender at 03:50 PM on March 30

NBA Pick 'Em Week 23: Better Not Rest Your Starters Edition

San Antonio by 4

posted by bender at 09:23 PM on March 29

NBA Pick 'Em Week 19: J.J. Barea Will Smash Edition

Milwaukee by 7
Washington by 3
Houston by 8
SLAM Portland by 14 SLAM
San Antonio by 3
Utah by 5

posted by bender at 03:31 PM on March 24

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

posted by bender at 07:36 PM on March 23

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle


posted by bender at 09:17 AM on March 16

NBA Pick 'Em Week 21: Emphasize the Triangle Edition

Cleveland by 6
Minnesota by 4
Los Angeles Clippers 5
SLAM Toronto 9 SLAM
Golden State by 5
SLAM Los Angeles Clippers by 12 SLAM

posted by bender at 09:04 AM on March 16

NBA Pick 'Em Week 20: Dirk Nowitzki 30,000 Edition

San Antonio by 3
Boston by 7
SLAM Cleveland by 14
SLAM San Antonio by 10
LA Lakers by 4

posted by bender at 11:12 AM on March 11

NBA Pick 'Em Week 19: Not Funny Amar'e Edition

Golden State by 8
Portland by 1
Cleveland by 7
SLAM San Antonio by 13 SLAM
Chicago by 5
SLAM Golden State by 20 SLAM
Oklahoma City by 7
Charlotte by 3
Los Angeles Clippers by 10

posted by bender at 04:39 PM on March 02

NBA Pick 'Em Week 18: Trade Deadline Edition

Chicago by 4
SLAM Cleveland by 11 SLAM
SLAM Houston by 13 SLAM

posted by bender at 12:55 AM on February 25

NBA Pick 'Em Week 18: Trade Deadline Edition

Cleveland by 4
SLAM Golden State by 14 SLAM

posted by bender at 02:54 PM on February 23

NBA Pick 'Em Week 17: Charles Oakley Will Smash Edition

Cleveland by 3
Oklahoma City by 3
SLAM Boston by 11 SLAM

posted by bender at 01:28 PM on February 15

NBA Pick 'Em Week 16: Go Mavericks Edition

Chicago by 3
Golden State by 8
SLAM San Antonio by 12 SLAM
Indiana by 3
Portland by 3

posted by bender at 09:39 PM on February 10

NBA Pick 'Em Week 16: Go Mavericks Edition

Portland by 2

posted by bender at 07:21 PM on February 09

NBA Pick 'Em Week 16: Go Mavericks Edition

Los Angeles Clippers by 2
SLAM Golden State by 17 SLAM
Cleveland by 4

posted by bender at 05:34 PM on February 08

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Super Bowl 0x33 Edition

Atlanta 34, New England 27

LOCK Atlanta by 7 LOCK
LOCK First FG: Stephen Gostkowski LOCK
First TD: Tevin Coleman
LOCK Most Passing: Matt Ryan LOCK
Most Rushing: Tevin Coleman
LOCK Most Receiving: Julio Jones LOCK
Sack: Dont'a Hightower
Interception: Jalen Collins
Turnover: Tom Brady
MVP: Julio Jones
Winner: bender
Total Points: 61

posted by bender at 02:43 PM on February 05

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Super Bowl 0x33 Edition

Your tally correctly shows me picking two correct props (Ryan and Jones), but the table did not award me any points for them.

posted by bender at 05:00 PM on February 03

NBA Pick 'Em Week 15: Proud Refugee Luol Deng Edition

SLAM Cleveland by 8 SLAM
Oklahoma City by 6
SLAM Houston by 11 SLAM
Golden State by 9
SLAM Boston by 14 SLAM
Dallas by 4
Cleveland by 5
Boston by 7
Washington by 3
Memphis by 6

posted by bender at 04:27 PM on January 31

NBA Pick 'Em Week 14: Ads on the Jersey Edition

Cleveland by 7
Boston by 7
Memphis by 7

posted by bender at 11:55 PM on January 28

NBA Pick 'Em Week 14: Ads on the Jersey Edition

SLAM Oklahoma City by 9 SLAM
SLAM Utah by 13 SLAM

posted by bender at 09:37 AM on January 26

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Conference Championship Edition

Atlanta by 4
LOCK New England by 10 LOCK
Matt Ryan
Ty Montgomery
Julio Jones
Malcolm Butler

posted by bender at 11:35 AM on January 22

The Worst Time to Lose a Scholarship Offer

Just four words:

Ee! Es! Pee! En!

Per wikipedia, it appears that National Signing Day predates ESPN, though the Worldwide Leader has certainly made a cottage industry out of it in recent years. prof's explanation sounds plausible. It could also be tied to the recruiting schedule that allows and restricts contact between schools and recruits during certain periods.

posted by bender at 11:25 AM on January 18

NBA Pick 'Em Week 13: No Rivals Edition

SLAM Houston by 12 SLAM
Golden State by 7
New York by 6
SLAM Los Angeles Clippers by 17 SLAM
Golden State by 3
Los Angeles Lakers by 5
Cleveland by 7
SLAM Indiana by 8 SLAM

posted by bender at 10:54 PM on January 17

The Worst Time to Lose a Scholarship Offer

I also assume that this incident will cost Edsall more in the long run. Recruiting is competitive, and if I was a coach and one of my prospective recruits was also considering playing for him, I would certainly be sure that the kid was aware of this story. [Unless, of course, this sort of thing happens everywhere and I just haven't heard these stories. That would be all the more reason to protect the players from this.]

posted by bender at 03:01 PM on January 17

The Worst Time to Lose a Scholarship Offer

Offers should be iron clad as soon as the kid agrees.

I think the counter-argument would be that that's what Signing Day is for. Agreements before Signing Day can be (and are) broken by either side. That is, after all, why UConn called him several times to make sure he was still coming. Now, I would make an argument that you should just be able to sign acceptance before Signing Day--I suspect there is some reason why Signing Day exists, though I don't know what it is.

All of that said, repeatedly checking that the kid is accepting the offer and then snatching it back is low. We'v only got one side of this story, but Edsall's [alleged] actions certainly are hard to justify.

Also, I do think that it would be fair to slant these procedures far more in favor of the players. There's a relevant side of that that comes from the fact that players cannot go straight from HS to the NFL and paying college players, but ignore that (for now) and focus on this kid, who as mentioned above, likely doesn't have a future career on Sundays. Coaches are all looking for the same thing: the best players they can land who fit with what they want to do. There's obviously nuances and exceptions, but coaches will all take the best players they can get. Players, conversely, have a lot of different reasons to choose where they go. It could be the name brand of the school, it could be the coach, it could be academic ranking, a particular academic program, scholarship details, proximity to home, ... Why did Ryan choose UConn? I have no idea. Business schools aren't rare, so it's probably not because they were the only school in the region with his program, but the fact that something like that could happen is all the more reason to protect the student.

posted by bender at 02:57 PM on January 17

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

It's easy to get bogged down by all of the idiotic stuff that is shared on Twitter, so it's nice to hear when technology is used for good!

posted by bender at 01:31 PM on January 17

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Divisional Round Edition

I would like to lock my pick of Dallas tomorrow. Full updated picks:

Atlanta by 5
LOCK New England by 13 LOCK
Kansas City by 3
LOCK Dallas by 10 LOCK

Matt Ryan
Zeke Elliott
Antonio Brown
Whitney Mercilus

posted by bender at 07:45 PM on January 14

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Divisional Round Edition

Atlanta by 5
LOCK New England by 13 LOCK
Kansas City by 3
Dallas by 10

Matt Ryan
Zeke Elliott
Antonio Brown
Whitney Mercilus

posted by bender at 03:27 PM on January 13

NBA Pick 'Em Week 12: Unexcused Absence Edition

Boston by 7
Cleveland by 5
Chicago by 4
LOCK Golden State by 17 LOCK
LOCK Atlanta by 7 LOCK
Utah by 6
Memphis by 7
Golden State by 4
Oklahoma City by 5

posted by bender at 01:24 PM on January 11

NFL Pick 'Em Champion Crowned

Thanks, rcade! Team bender is waiting with baited breath to find out if our stunning week 17 performance has indeed moved us out of the cellar or if we have a dented new Costanza to add to the trophy case.

some text

posted by bender at 10:53 AM on January 11

It's the end of the World Cup as we know it

It already is. Three and a half places for CONCACAF. You should make it every time.

I agree that we should make it every time, but at least the margin for error is small enough that it remains interesting. With 6 teams getting through, there is effectively no chance that the US doesn't qualify. Even Canada is going to qualify for the World Cup someday.

posted by bender at 09:05 PM on January 10

It's the end of the World Cup as we know it

I suppose it is worth noting that the tournament field has only been 32 since 1998. The current format just seems so good, though, and I agree that 3-team groups sound a lot less compelling.

I do not like the fact that this makes qualification a slam dunk for the US. Currently, WCQ matches are exciting and interesting and accessible here at home. I don't want to lose that, and the downgrade in importance may also hurt team development.

I also am concerned for my marriage. I watch a lot of the World Cup already, to the detriment of all else.

I'm with you, though it's a bit surprising that adding 16 teams would only add 16 matches and keep the same amount of time on the calendar. Think of it this way, there's probably 16 snoozers in group play that you can forego so that you can add in the round of 32 without watching more games!

posted by bender at 05:39 PM on January 10

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

There was a slow buildup in the game, but what a finish! I think it was a steady progression of Clemson figuring out Alabama's defense so that they could lay it to them in the 4th quarter.

posted by bender at 04:02 PM on January 10

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Wild-Card Edition

Didn't think about locks for the playoff pick 'em. If they are in effect, my picks are updated as follows:

Houston by 3
Seattle by 7
LOCK Pittsburgh by 13 LOCK
Green Bay by 4
Matthew Stafford
Le'Veon Bell
Doug Baldwin
Quintin Demps

posted by bender at 12:00 PM on January 07

NFL Playoff Pick 'Em: Wild-Card Edition

Houston by 3
Seattle by 7
Pittsburgh by 13
Green Bay by 4
Matthew Stafford
Le'Veon Bell
Doug Baldwin
Quintin Demps

posted by bender at 02:42 PM on January 06

NBA Pick 'Em Week 11: Nick Young Dance Party Edition

SLAM Houston by 9 SLAM
San Antonio by 7
Milwaukee by 5
SLAM Golden State by 17 SLAM
Utah by 4
Los Angeles Lakers by 3

posted by bender at 09:29 AM on January 05

NFL Pick 'Em Week 17: One-Legged Quarterback Edition

Cincinnati by 3
Buffalo by 2
Tampa Bay by 5
Minnesota by 4
LOCK Pittsburgh by 17 LOCK
Dallas by 5
Detroit by 3
Houston by 7
Indianapolis by 4
LOCK New England by 15 LOCK
Atlanta by 4
Washington by 3
Arizona by 3
LOCK Kansas City by 21 LOCK
Oakland by 3
Seattle by 3

posted by bender at 05:50 AM on December 30

NBA Pick 'Em Week 10: George Karl's Distracting Posse Edition

Boston by 3
LA Lakers by 3

posted by bender at 05:16 AM on December 28

NFL Pick 'Em Week 16: Farewell Gus Bradley Edition

New York Giants by 7
Atlanta by 5
Buffalo by 4
LOCK Green Bay by 7 LOCK
LOCK New England by 13 LOCK
Cleveland by 3
LOCK Tampa Bay by 10 LOCK
Tennessee by 10
Washington by 4
LOCK Oakland by 10 LOCK
LOCK Seattle by 10 LOCK
San Francisco by 3
Houston by 3
Pittsburgh by 4
Kansas City by 4
LOCK Dallas by 10 LOCK

posted by bender at 11:04 AM on December 23

NBA Pick 'Em Week 9: Craig Sager Memorial Edition

Boston by 1
Los Angeles Clippers by 1
New York by 4
Cleveland by 4
SLAM San Antonio by 13 SLAM
SLAM Oklahoma City by 15 SLAM
Los Angeles Clippers by 6

posted by bender at 01:00 PM on December 22

NFL Pick 'Em Week 16: Farewell Gus Bradley Edition

NY Giants by 7

posted by bender at 06:39 AM on December 22

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Also, my captaincy of Salomon Rondon's hat trick and the resultant 34 points were equal to or better than 5 full weeks' performances for my Fantasy EPL squad. Watch out, guy in 13th place!

posted by bender at 11:52 AM on December 15

NFL Pick 'Em Week 15: Farewell Jeff Fisher Edition

NFL Picks for this week:

LOCK Seattle by 18 LOCK
Miami by 5
Green Bay by 8
Houston by 7
LOCK Buffalo by 13 LOCK
Philadelphia by 3
Kansas City by 3
New York by 7
Minnesota by 3
Pittsburgh by 3
Arizona by 9
LOCK Atlanta by 12 LOCK
Denver by 3
LOCK Oakland by 14 LOCK
Dallas by 3
Washington by 10

posted by bender at 11:41 AM on December 15

NBA Pick 'Em Week 8: Last-Place Dallas Mavericks Edition

SLAM Chicago by 7 SLAM
Oklahoma City by 3
Indiana by 7
SLAM San Antonio by 12 SLAM
Milwaukee by 3
Golden State by 6
Philadelphia by 5
SLAM Utah by 8 SLAM

posted by bender at 09:52 AM on December 13