Recent Comments by bluesdog

Cutler tore MCL vs. Packers

I love the city of Chicago and most every person I've met who lives there, so it pains me to write "Stay classy, Chicago."

I am also from Chicago and I agree. If people want to rag on Cutler, they should get on him for being ineffective while he was healthy. Everyone wants their QB to be Brett Favre and play with one arm on one leg. I agree with kokaku -- Cutler would have been even more worthless. He wasn't getting the job done. At least Caleb Hanie played with some energy and purpose.

posted by bluesdog at 02:34 PM on January 24

Tom Jackson Should Stop Talking Now

Why should Jackson care what Bart Scott thinks of his prediction? I thought his radio interview comments were kind of an ironic joke while admitting that he guessed wrong about the score. Why make an excuse for your comments, man?

posted by bluesdog at 08:09 AM on January 21

Cowboys WR Dez Bryant defies rookie tradition, refuses to carry Roy Williams' shoulder pads

There's a difference between asking a rookie to carry your pads and making his life miserable, which I think is stupid. (Read here for examples)

Maybe Dez Bryant is all business and it seems like nonsense to him. Maybe, as Skip Bayless said on ESPN today, he just doesn't want to carry Williams' pads in particular. But doing a little dirty work shows vets you're a team guy. If he did it without making a stink, he could probably avoid step 2. Which Williams should have nothing to do with if he's smart.

posted by bluesdog at 03:51 PM on July 26

Tiger May Have More to Apologize For

There's no athlete who is bigger than the game.

It depends on how you define "the game."

As sport itself, I would agree. But the game for many people is what the media feeds us. Since 1996, Tiger Woods has been the only reason the vast majority of Americans follow golf. If Tiger never returned, some die-hard golf fans may not care. The sport of golf would go on. But who would notice? Tournament viewership would drop off the map.

Until someone else stepped up. And where is that guy?

posted by bluesdog at 11:11 AM on March 03

Tiger May Have More to Apologize For

I'm fed up with members of the sports media who forget that Tiger is their steady meal ticket. The asinine griping that Tiger apologized on his own terms is the worst. On whose terms should he apologize? Perhaps he should have requested a nationwide ESPN poll on the correct way to apologize. I don't care that he read from a script. He doesn't do improv, he swings a stick for a living.

Tiger owes his wife, his sponsors (the remaining ones), and his inner circle but owes NOTHING to the media or golf fans. They didn't make him. They just flocked to him.

Rcade, as you seem to be the SportsFilter go-to guy for reliable information, can you recommend any articles that have an objective handle on the Tiger story?

posted by bluesdog at 09:00 PM on March 01

Tiger May Have More to Apologize For

I posted this article mainly to point out the weak logic applied to the argument that Tiger's been playing dirty.


One, pretty much every high-profile athlete who has issued similar denials under similar circumstances over the past few years has been proven to be lying. Period.

Two, and this would be the game-changer, we now know that Woods has been lying for years about matters of tremendous import on a personal level. He told us himself: He has lied habitually, repeatedly, with a complete understanding of the nature of his actions and without regard to the consequences.

Which is to suggest: 1) Others have lied about using performance enhancing drugs, therefore Tiger Woods -- albeit an entirely different person -- must be lying as well; and 2) Tiger has knowingly lied about one aspect of his life therefore Tiger must consistently lie about other aspects of his life.

I have no idea if he is dirty. But I've grown weary of all the "what if" articles floating theories for the sake of riding the Tiger Woods gravy train. Prove something!

posted by bluesdog at 06:45 PM on March 01

Walking His Way to Cooperstown.

Great post, Holden! Nice to see some less obvious articles on Sportsfilter, as it was intended.

posted by bluesdog at 01:34 AM on December 13

Greg Maddux to retire on Monday

As a lifelong Cub fan I am only sorry to see him go into the HOF as a Brave, which he definitely will and probably should. If there were ever a player who deserved unanimous election, it's Maddux.

posted by bluesdog at 09:47 PM on December 07

Greg Maddux to retire on Monday

You guys are total A-HOLES! I don't where this rumor started.

Greg Maddux has been nothing but a model citizen and a shining example to other would-be prostitute slayers across the nation. All this nasty talk about his "pitching career" is totally unfounded. He's been murdering prostitutes his entire life and has had no time for anything else.

posted by bluesdog at 02:49 AM on December 06

Giants' Receiver Burress Shoots Leg in Gun Accident

Can someone get Jerry Jones on the phone? He hasn't signed a troubled castoff from another team in nearly 7 weeks.

posted by bluesdog at 02:12 AM on December 01

Change Citi Field to Citi/Taxpayer Field?

Beltran Backpay Ballpark

posted by bluesdog at 12:28 PM on November 26

MLB MVPs Announced

MVP is a bad name for the award in any sports league. Every year the "valuable" topic comes up -- just change the name already. It can mean anything you want to justify your rooting interest in a player. Valuable to what -- the team, the league, the fans, the game of baseball?

A more fitting title would be Outstanding Player, Most Productive or just Player of the Year. There would still be bias toward guys on the best teams but hopefully it would encourage voters to look at individual production.

posted by bluesdog at 11:35 AM on November 19

MLB MVPs Announced

The right guys got it this year. Pujols's numbers are superior to everyone in the NL. Ryan Howard struck out 199 times and bat .251 and that doesn't cut it. You can't say he totally carried his team on his back. Pujols. Easy.

Pedroia is trickier because Mauer and Morneau had comparable numbers. In that case, tie goes to the guy whose team DOES get in the playoffs (although Twins almost did). Anyway, those two guys cancelled each other out. And with that competition Josh Hamilton didn't have a chance playing on a bad team. Pedroia really did carry the Sox though when the going got tough.

posted by bluesdog at 12:56 AM on November 19

Kerry Wood and Cubs Parting Ways

It's great when your team signs an ironman who stays healthy throughout his career but it says a lot when a guy goes through the kind of injuries Wood had and comes back to produce in a totally different role. Wdminott, have you pitched pro ball? Do you know what it's like to throw in the mid 90s with a blister on your throwing hand? He would have been a total liability if they put him back on the mound before it was healed.

Wood is a consummate pro. Read this...

"I just don't think it was the right time for the team and the things they need to address," Wood said. "Obviously, the first choice was to stay here, and I would've done just about anything to stay here. They have other issues and a very capable guy to get the job done."

That's class.

posted by bluesdog at 05:41 PM on November 14

Cowboys Acquire Roy Williams in Trade with Lions

Am I crazy or does Jerry Jones only pick up guys with baggage? Dallas is like the final resting place for extremely talented misfit players.

T.O. and Williams are buddies now. But do you think T.O. will be happy if he only has 7-8 pass targets per game?

Charlatan, how did you end up drafting Romo 4 times? The odds of that are crazy. Unless you only have auction drafts and you went on a Romo binge. Btw, sorry for your loss.

posted by bluesdog at 12:37 AM on October 15

Josh Howard Disrespects National Anthem

Look everyone's personal opinion about what he said is valid. Not going to debate that. But looking at it from a professional standpoint, he BLEW it! It's not even about being a role model. It's about knowing when your private thoughts (or jokes) might become public fodder. As in ANY TIME YOU ARE IN FRONT OF A CAMERA. My guess is that this will eventually blow over. He will probably make some kind of written public apology through a spokesman that it was meant in jest but that he should have been more sensitive. Unless the people of Dallas demand his head, he'll keep playing for the Mavs. And if he keeps putting up 20 pts a game, it will be forgotten.

posted by bluesdog at 01:07 AM on September 18

Brewers Fire Ned Yost

Interesting stat, Hal. I'd heard something along those lines as well about managerial impact. Though there's a degree of subjectivity to be sure. I don't think they believe Sveum will ignite the team as much as Yost's absence will make for a more positive clubhouse. It's similar to what the Mets did dropping Willie Randolph and having Jerry Manuel take the helm (at least for this season). They think guys will just feel more comfortable with a less divisive skipper. And at least on paper, it's worked for the Mets. It seems like voodoo science but this is a desperate situation for the Brewers. Getting into the playoffs this year is critical for Milwaukee. They will probably lose Sabbathia and Sheets after the season no matter how well they do so they have to make a run now. As a Cub fan, I pray that doesn't happen.

Side note -- I agree with Qatarian. Having the Cubs come in to Milwaukee and win under those circumstances must suck for the Brewers. I would not be happy about a division rival playing in Wrigley against any team other than the Cubs. Raw deal for Astros and Brewers.

posted by bluesdog at 02:18 AM on September 16

Giants & Jets Nix Stadium Naming Deal with Nazi-linked Insurance Firm

Like it or not, these decisions are always hugely political. No sports organization wants to be affiliated with perceived sketchiness. As kokaku points out, Allianz is not the same company today and has acknowledged its shame for contributing to Nazi atrocities. I've heard that some Jewish organizations consider present day Allianz a friend to the Jewish community. But it doesn't matter because this has become a cause celebre for a lot of people in New York. It's bad for business and good business is all that matters. That's why Enron Field is now Minute Maid Part. With the subprime mess we're in now, I would bet that if Citibank were implicated (unlikely but possible), the Mets organization would consider buying back the naming rights so the new stadium did not bear the name Citi Field.

posted by bluesdog at 02:12 PM on September 13

Giants & Jets Nix Stadium Naming Deal with Nazi-linked Insurance Firm

Like it or not, these decisions are always hugely political. No sports organization wants to be affiliated with perceived sketchiness. As kokaku points out, Allianz is not the same company today and has acknowledged its shame for contributing to Nazi atrocities. I've heard that some Jewish organizations consider present day Allianz a friend to the Jewish community. But it doesn't matter because this has become a cause celebre for a lot of people in New York. It's bad for business and good business is all that matters. That's why Enron Field is now Minute Maid Part. With all subprime mess we're in now, I would bet that if Citibank were implicated (unlikely but possible), the Mets organization would consider buying back the naming rights so the new stadium did not bear the name Citi Field.

posted by bluesdog at 02:11 PM on September 13

Who Showed Up? Was it Really Clutch Rex? Bears Move On.

Wdminott, I am a Bear fan too and Rex gives me ulcers out there. But unless Rex is tanking beyond belief (possible) I don't think putting Griese in will make a difference. He hasn't had the reps this season to come into a huge game like this and bail them out of a jam. When he has played his numbers have been subpar. Like everyone else who is prescribing the solution to Rex's woes, here is my prescription: 1. Be aware of pressure and take a sack if necessary. Too many times Rex doesn't see defenders bearing down on him and when he does, he doesn't tuck the ball into his body and take a 5 or 10 yard loss to avoid fumbling or throwing a pick. 2. Hit receivers in stride. Did you notice how many balls he threw to a receiver's rear shoulder? 80% of the time, guys had to reach back to make catches. Muhammed coughed up that one ball for an INT but Rex's ball placement did not help. 3. Lean into passes and throw off front foot.. The throwing off his back foot drives me nuts. It automatically puts more loft on the ball and makes it easier for DBs to pick it off. 4. Learn from mistakes. You have to take risks in a game but you can't afford to gamble with field position or turnovers.

posted by bluesdog at 01:35 AM on January 16

Nick Saban to leave Dolphins for Alabama

If you are an NFL owner you have to learn from recent history -- college coaches who jump straight to the NFL without pro coaching experience don't pan out so well. Steve Spurrier, Butch Davis, Dennis Erickson, Pete Carroll and now Saban. There may be others I'm forgetting. Jimmy Johnson is the exception to the rule. And I guess you could make an argument for Tom Coughlin. It's a different reality in the pro game. Teaching and mentoring is lost on those huge paychecks. Joe Theisman had an interesting observation on ESPNews -- how will Saban talk to recruits about making a commitment to Alabama after this? Probably won't be too hard but it's a fair point.

posted by bluesdog at 11:45 AM on January 03

Coach Sets High School Bad Sportsmanship Record

What makes it hollow? He still had to run over the other team even though they knew he was going to be running. They still couldn't stop him. Because it was like shooting ducks in a barrel. The kid himself thought he'd be watching from the sidelines after halftime. So the score was obviously lopsided at that point. Even if he played the third quarter to insure the victory, fine. But not returning punts to help him get more yardage? The coach did that because he knew it was a cakewalk. And it proves that coaching all aspects of the game became unimportant to him. He made a choice to stop coaching the way the game should be played and to start a public campaign for one player in the middle of an official game. His ass should be fired. If I was the opposing coach I would have repeatedly gone for it on 4th down even in his own team's territory. Besides, if they were down by that much they shouldn't bother punting anyway.

posted by bluesdog at 11:57 AM on October 06

Coach Sets High School Bad Sportsmanship Record

forget the sportsmanship issue for a moment. isn't the job of a coach to promote a team first attitude rather than putting one player on a pedestal? even if the kid deserves some glory because of his amazing work ethic and attitude -- in fact, BECAUSE of that -- it sends a completely wrongheaded message to your players -- that it's all about individual records and recognition. it was no longer about winning. it was no longer about giving kids on the bench some playing time -- which might be useful if at some point in the future. it all focused on one guy in a team game. if it was tennis -- all bets are off -- go for as many aces as you can get. but come on, that was lame. sure, all the kids were probably psyched that their buddy broke the record but years later they'll know they took advantage of easy prey. forget sportsmanship -- what a hollow friggin' achievement. the only attention it will bring this kid is negative attention. and don't tell me it helps put smaller schools on the map. it only reflects badly on them.

posted by bluesdog at 10:12 AM on October 06

Madden Jinx?

I'm superstitious so I believe in this crap I admit. I wonder if players may graciously decline the opportunity to be on the Madden cover. I guess if you want rock solid proof, someone indestructible like Peyton Manning has to be on the cover.

posted by bluesdog at 02:32 AM on September 26

At 30, Tiger becomes youngest to 50 PGA wins

Dbt, there is no way Tiger will average 5 wins a year until he's 37. No way. He will probably average slightly under 4 wins/year. Too much can happen in 7 years. Injuries, babies, new swing coach, who knows. The big question is how many majors will he average a year. I would guess 1/year.

posted by bluesdog at 10:43 PM on August 07

Most influential players in NBA History

what stands out in his list is the unique stamp each of those players left on the game. based on that alone (not necessarily who was the best of all-time), here's who should also be on the list: 1) Olajuwon -- most mobile, best-passing, most well-rounded center ever. no brainer. 2) Kevin McHale -- patented the undefendable low-post move. he dominated on that move alone. everyone knew where he'd be but still couldn't block him out. 3) Dennis Rodman -- first purely defensive-minded starting forward who was not an offensive liability bc his offensive rebounding made him a threat. paved way for guys like Ben Wallace. and i agree with spitztengle. like it or not, he was really first guy to push the tattoo/wild hairdo envelope to become commonplace today. 4) Bird -- mainly because he's Bird and bc he proved slow white guys could dominate with amazing court sense and psychological intimidation. plus, he and magic brought the NBA out of the abyss when they joined the league. 5) Maravich -- for the reasons already mentioned

posted by bluesdog at 12:08 PM on August 03

Be like Zidane.

agree with redsox. fun for 15 seconds. what will last much longer is the spyware that site downloads to your computer.

posted by bluesdog at 08:29 AM on July 14

Woods skips Memorial:

In a way I'd be happy if Tiger did opt out of the US Open and eventually return for a smaller tourney with less TV coverage. Tommy you're right about the media overdramatizing it. They would go straight for the heart strings like friggin vultures. Networks love "stories" like this and behind closed doors would be pissed if Tiger didn't give them a chance to capitalize on it. It's nice to see an athlete mourn on his own schedule rather than buckling to pressure of sponsors, fans, etc.

posted by bluesdog at 12:18 AM on May 27

The No-Fun NFL strikes again

On the other side of the line, Brian Bosworth went ballistic when they denied his petition to wear 44, his college number at Oklahoma. He had established a corporation called 44-Boz Inc. and argued the economic impact would hurt his corp. He even obtained a court order against the NFL to wear 44 instead of 55. I guess if Bush wants to sue the NFL he may have a case. Wouldn't do much for his image though.

posted by bluesdog at 09:30 AM on May 24

Schmidt: McGwire should be in Hall; Palmeiro tougher

i like schmidt and i respect him but it does bother me that guys wait until they're in the HOF to offer any critical commentary on players or the game. it's like, "Now that I'm in Heaven, no one can touch me." it's understandable i guess but it makes me appreciate a guy like charles barkley who spoke his mind throughout his career without sucking up to the media or the league.

posted by bluesdog at 04:39 PM on February 28

Why skating is not a sport

Why is "sport" such an incredibly loaded word? By writing that article, Wetzel makes a relatively cogent argument but implies a "competition" doesn't measure up to sport status. And yet he credits the athleticism of skaters. It really seems he's just making a semantic argument for the sake of argument. But then why write the article? Is his point that an athletic pursuit has street cred if its a sport and somehow less cool if its a competition? THX, you're totally right about X-games (and some Olympic "sports") as being competitions as Wetzel defines them. I wonder if he would consider curling a sport, or chess? Scoring in both are objective, just like basketball.

posted by bluesdog at 05:04 PM on February 21

Lions ink Mike Martz as Offensive Coordinator

Note this odd coincidence in Detroit coaching hires: Matt Millen has now hired: Mornhinweg, Mariucci, Marinelli and now Martz. They might get John Madden out of the broadcasters booth in a couple years. Dick Jauron never had a chance.

posted by bluesdog at 09:38 AM on February 09

Super Superbowl fan: He's attended all 39!

I was there at Super Bowl XIV with the guy to watch the Steelers beat the LA Rams. I was only 10 but it was memorable. My dad probably had to shell out $200 for tickets -- a lot of cash back then.

posted by bluesdog at 10:02 PM on January 27

Worse. Halftime. Show. Ever.

I've probably watched this 15 times since it first came out. It makes me smile with delight every time. I don't know why it makes me so happy.

posted by bluesdog at 01:12 PM on April 12

What Would Morrie Think?

This from a 2003 Albom article about, Jayson Blair, the former New York Times journalist who resigned in disgrace following a plagiarism scandal. What he doesn't get is that journalism is not Hollywood. It's not about closing the deal. It's not about face time. It's about -- simply put -- telling the truth. Ironically, Albom's latest misstep is all about face time, or lack thereof.

posted by bluesdog at 04:52 PM on April 09

What Would Morrie Think?

LOL, chris2. He did fuck up. Serious lapse of judgment. And in his apology, I think Albom unwittingly implies he has made this journalistic faux pas before. However I'm not sure how much further he could have gone in his mea culpa. He's not going to put himself on probation. Per that article in Poynter Forum, I think the Detroit Free Press should issue a full page self-flaggelating apology to its readers acknowledging its responsibility in the matter. Albom would certainly feel the repercussions.

posted by bluesdog at 12:23 PM on April 08

Illinois Mascot Controversey:

Thanks for the post, newage. I agree, a very good read. I've always found such mascots to be an indefensible disgrace. But like most people all I ever do about it is roll my eyes. And that's only when the subject is raised in forums like this. We've become anesthetized because it's woven into our cultural fabric as a harmless vestige of another era. The truth of the matter is that while some groups are off-limits, it's tolerable to exploit Native Americans in this way. The Fighting Whites satire is a good way to raise awareness. But I would love it if some small college went in the other direction and announced that it had a Jewish or African American mascot in the same vein as Chief Wahoo. In spite of the intended irony, the public outrage would be deafening.

posted by bluesdog at 12:40 AM on April 08

Is The Hall Of Fame Out Of The Question For Mark McGwire?

Gwynn is a first-ballot guy for sure. Ripken gets in easily as well (but jeez..imagine if HE used steroids...he was awfully big for a shortstop...j/k) McGwire gets in as well, but maybe not with the percentage that Gwynn and Ripken get (say, 81%). Baines makes it in ONLY if there is a sudden shift towards allowing a pure DH to make it in (which is what Baines was for the latter half of his career). In the modern age, it is extremely rare that 3 guys get in on a first ballot. '99 is the only time it has happened in recent memory and there was zero question that Brett, Ryan and Yount were getting in. It was a fluke those three guys happened to be up it for the same year. Gwynn and Ripken are obvious. And I tend to agree with you about Baines. He won't get in the first try -- may not for a very long time, if at all. But he will also take votes away from McGwire because the writers are stingy that way. McGwire will not get in first ballot. Won't happen. Based on what I've read, enough voters are now sufficiently turned off by McGwire's testimony to make that a certainty. They may give it to him eventually -- and I believe they will -- but they will not give him carte blanche. PS Will Clark will not get in either. I'd love it if he did but nope.

posted by bluesdog at 12:48 PM on March 28

Is The Hall Of Fame Out Of The Question For Mark McGwire?

I agree that OBP is valid whether earned with good hitting and a good eye or "earned" because pitchers feared someone enough to put them on base intentionally. But receiving entry into MLB'S Hall of Fame is widely considered to be more difficult than any other pro sport. Pure power hitters don't get into the HOF on a first ballot unless they have significant postseason heroics on their resume, which McGwire doesn't have comparitively speaking. It took Killebrew 4 years to get admitted and he was certainly viewed to be as much of a power stud at the time as McGwire is now -- though not as popular in the public eye. McGwire was a ferocious slugger but he was not multi-dimensional and I highly doubt he would get in on a first ballot, roids or no roids. He and Sosa helped get the game back on its feet and that would probably push some writers on the fence to give him the nod. But unless he's in an especially weak field of nominees, it would take him at least a few years WITHOUT the cloud of a steroid scandal.

posted by bluesdog at 02:21 PM on March 26

Is The Hall Of Fame Out Of The Question For Mark McGwire?

Great point dyams! Steroids notwithstanding, how do you vote in McGwire before a Dave Parker? As I see it, McGwire would get in on the same terms that Gary Carter got in. Quality players with subpar numbers in most areas but were good for the game and loved by the media. The one guy in the Hall I'd compare McGwire to is Harmon Killebrew. Killebrew was a great power hitter especially for his time but barely merited admission to the hall otherwise. And his numbers are generally better than McGwire's overall. McGwire is not a 1st ballot guy by any stretch. I'm sure he'll get in eventually. But now the wait will be longer.

posted by bluesdog at 06:34 PM on March 25

Toughest Position on the Team: Coach's Son

I'm a little confused. Based on the two articles, it seems that this coach has two sons whom he coached at different times. One son named Chris, one named Justin.

posted by bluesdog at 12:32 PM on March 19

Embedded journalism in a foreign unit

yeah, i'm jealous. he is a bastard. but did anyone notice how easy it was for him? it would have been nice to see more humility injected into the piece. but i guess that speaks to the hospitality of the blue jays.

posted by bluesdog at 10:58 AM on March 10

Moss to be traded to Oakland

Wonder how Jerry Porter feels about this development -- what, a whole day after re-signing. He must have been informed and felt it would open him up to single coverage to play with Randy. But for sure, Ronald Curry cannot be happy -- this will definitely limit his touches.

posted by bluesdog at 08:30 PM on February 23