Recent Comments by grum@work

Panthers Win in NHL Record 20-Round Shootout

Okay, so they had to cycle through their roster again. I was stunned for a second that Ovechkin would be that far down the depth chart for shootout.

posted by grum@work at 11:24 AM on December 18

Can True Sports Fans Switch to a New Favorite Team?

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs
(If there ever was a reason to jump ship from your favourite team, being a Leafs fan over the past 43 years would probably be high up there.)

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays
(Longest active playoff drought in MLB right now. Of course, there was about an 8 year window long ago where being a fan was a good thing.)

NFL: Buffalo Bills
(Longest active playoff drought in the NFL right now. Of course, there was about an 4 year window long ago where being a fan was...tortuous.)

NBA: Toronto Raptors
(This is my weakest "hometown" connection, simply because I'm not a huge NBA fan. But things are looking pretty good this year.)

EPL: I don't have a real connection with a team. When I first started watching, it was all about ManU (Beckham, Nistelrooy) and winning. Then it was about anyone OTHER than ManU, with a leaning towards Chelsea (because someone bought me a jersey), with some love to the long lost Charlton Athletics (went to a game the year after they dropped down to Championship League).

IPL: I have a Chennai SuperKings jersey, so that's my default team.

posted by grum@work at 10:35 PM on December 17

Can True Sports Fans Switch to a New Favorite Team?

And the Canadiens still seem to beat the Leafs 9 out of 10 games with the Leafs goalies stopping 42 shots in each of those games.

Your perception is not reality.

Not counting this season (only one game played), the last time the Montreal Canadiens had better than .500 record against the Toronto Maple Leafs in a season, Pavel Datsyuk was a rookie, and John Vanbiesbrouck played his final game (2001-2002). The Maple Leafs have the upper hand over the Canadiens for the past 13 years.

Toronto is 36W-22L-10OTL-1T vs Montreal over that span.

Also, there hasn't been a single game between the two teams in that time where a Maple Leafs goalie has had to make at least 42 saves (in a win/loss/tie)

posted by grum@work at 10:26 PM on December 17

Served up on a platter for SportsFilter


posted by grum@work at 01:52 PM on December 17

Can True Sports Fans Switch to a New Favorite Team?

Unless they do something so reprehensible* that you can't stomach to even look at them, I don't see how you can have a "new favourite team". You might add teams to your "cheering" list (because you've moved), but when push comes to shove you'll probably go with the team that you grew up cheering for.

* Examples:
Edmonton Oilers
Baltimore Colts
Wimbledon F.C.
Oakland Raiders
New York Giants
Brooklyn Dodgers

posted by grum@work at 10:55 AM on December 17

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Should there be a penalty to stop visiting players from jumping into a crowd?

Only if there is a penalty for home team players for jumping into a crowd of their fans.

If visiting fans have purchased a block of tickets in the front row of the stadium, I don't see why the visiting players can't Lambeau-leap into them.

posted by grum@work at 10:32 AM on December 17

Welcome to Middle Infielder Island

This reminds me of the town of San Pedro de Macoris, in the Dominican Republic.

It has about 190,000 people in it, but it's been the home of an unusually large number of successful MLB players.

posted by grum@work at 11:25 AM on December 16

Zemgus Girgensons Leads NHL All-Star Voting

I have no problem with this.

If you want to open up voting to people around the world, you have to expect something like this to happen.

Plus, it's Latvia. There are barely 2 million people in Latvia, so if he's already got over 800,000 votes, that's amazing.

I think the gauntlet has been thrown down now.

Es ist Zeit fr sterreich zu intensivieren und stimmen Sie fr Mats Zuccarello !
Pourquoi pas la France voter pour Antoine Roussel ?
Danmark ! Intensivere og stemme p Mikkel Boedker !

posted by grum@work at 12:09 PM on December 15

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

This is the formula that helped Doug Flutie become ONE OF the greatest quarterbacks in CFL history

Anthony Calvillo is the greatest QB the CFL has ever seen.

This is going to be one of those "Tastes great!" "Less filling!" kind of arguments. I would have no problem with anyone listing either of them as "the greatest" on their list.

Calvillo has the length of career on his side (20 seasons, all of the "most X in a career" records), I think Flutie has the peak of career on his side (6 MVP awards in 8 seasons).

To me, it's like comparing Ray Bourque to Bobby Orr.

posted by grum@work at 11:54 AM on December 15

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Isn't it premature to start talking CFL? Manziel is going to be the starter next year in Cleveland. He needs an entire season of terrible play under his belt, maybe two, before he might be invited to succeed elsewhere.

But I want to speculate about the future NOW!


posted by grum@work at 11:45 AM on December 15

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Actually, the CFL is better at exposing QBs that have flaws, because they are a much more pass-oriented league than the NFL. A good QB in the NFL can be a great QB in the CFL. A bad QB in the NFL can be a TERRIBLE QB in the CFL.

What Manziel might be able to do in the CFL is work on his passing while still being able to use his scrambling nature to be successful. This is the formula that helped Doug Flutie become the greatest quarterback in CFL history.

I think Manziel might be best suited for a stint in the CFL to gain more confidence. The wider/deeper field and the less talented defenses might be enough to give him time to work on his mechanics/intuition.

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats have Manziel's "negotiating rights", so they'd get first crack at him if he were to come up north. They should probably hang on to those rights for another season or two.

If he were to salvage his career and turn into the next Jeff Garcia, that's not a bad future.

posted by grum@work at 10:16 AM on December 15

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Is the MMR vaccination not done outside the US?

MMR vaccination is done at 12 months and again at 18 months (no later than before going to public school (4-6 years old)) in Canada.

Of course, maybe during Crosby's formative years it might not have been mandatory (or maybe his family skipped it anyways because of some reason).

posted by grum@work at 10:55 PM on December 14

New Tennis League Called 'Minor Miracle' by Wall Street Journal

I saw this listed on my channel guide (IPTL - Manila vs UAE) and was utterly confused as to what it could possibly be.

I switched over, saw tennis being played, and figured it was a mistake in the guide.

Two days later, I saw another listing with a similar match up (Singapore, this time) and realized it was some new version of "Team Tennis".

Those are some big name players on the rosters.

posted by grum@work at 11:51 PM on December 13

Bitcoin Bowl Brings Virtual Currency to St. Pete

I wonder if boosters could pay college football players under the table in bitcoin without it being traceable.

The smart ones have already started doing that.

posted by grum@work at 03:03 PM on December 12

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

That new GM for the Dodgers is definitely changing things up. It looks like he had a list of "must fix" ideas, and he's going through them step by step.

posted by grum@work at 11:20 AM on December 11

Wage Lawsuit by Bills Cheerleaders Details Appalling Treatment

The high rollers paid cash -- 'Flips for Tips' -- to watch bikini-clad cheerleaders do back flips. Afterward, the men placed bids on which women would ride around in their golf carts. A not-incidental detail: The carts had no extra seats. Women clung to the back or, much more to the point, were invited to sit in the men's laps.

This sounds like a ridiculous scene from "Mad Men" than something that happened during my lifetime.

I'm a Bills fan, and I hope they lose the lawsuit.

posted by grum@work at 11:17 AM on December 11

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Yeah, but did any teenagers scoop them both?

posted by grum@work at 12:14 PM on December 10

Tide-Buckeyes, Ducks-Noles

So it should be Harvard, Florida State, and then any two also-ran one-loss teams.

By your logic shouldn't it be Fair Harvard, Yale, Army and Toledo?

Yale had two losses.
Army had seven losses.
Toledo had four losses.

The only other remaining 1-loss teams (other than those I listed before) in D-1 conferences are:

New Hampshire
North Dakota State
Illinois State
Jacksonville State

For those teams, you can trace back the "win chain" to Harvard:

Marshall - eventually links into the chain through Illinois
New Hampshire - eventually links into the chain through Toledo
North Dakota State - eventually links into the chain through Baylor
Illinois State - eventually links into the chain through Baylor
Jacksonville State - eventually links into the chain through Ohio State

In all seriousness, Florida State is the only one that you can't link through "win chains" to Harvard.

I assume you can build a similar "win chain" for every team for Florida State.
(But I'll leave that up to anyone else who feels obsessive/compulsive. I've drained myself for this intellectual exercise for now.)

posted by grum@work at 02:08 PM on December 08

Tide-Buckeyes, Ducks-Noles

I find it funny that the Belt hasn't actually landed on the National Champion team since 2010.

posted by grum@work at 09:55 PM on December 07

Tide-Buckeyes, Ducks-Noles

I've been informed that Harvard will automatically refuse any post-season bowl appearances (school policy).

posted by grum@work at 05:32 PM on December 07

Tide-Buckeyes, Ducks-Noles

I'm not sure why Harvard isn't in the College Football Playoff

Let me map it out for you:

First of all, Harvard is undefeated this year.

Second of all, they can claim to be better than the other teams with one-loss in the top 6.

They are better than Alabama.
Harvard beat Yale
Yale beat Army
Army beat Toledo
Toledo beat Bowling Green
Bowling Green beat Indiana
Indiana beat Missouri
Missouri beat Arkansas
Arkansas beat Mississippi
Mississippi beat Alabama

They are better than Oregon.
Harvard beat Yale
Yale beat Army
Army beat Toledo
Toledo beat Bowling Green
Bowling Green beat Indiana
Indiana beat Purdue
Purdue beat Illinois
Illinois beat Penn State
Penn State beat Rutgers
Rutgers beat Washington State
Washington State beat Utah
Utah beat UCLA
UCLA beat Arizona
Arizona beat Oregon

They are better than Ohio State.
Harvard beat Yale
Yale beat Army
Army beat Toledo
Toledo beat Bowling Green
Bowling Green beat Akron
Akron beat Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh beat Boston College
Boston College beat Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech beat Ohio State

They are better than Baylor.
Harvard beat Yale
Yale beat Army
Army beat Toledo
Toledo beat Bowling Green
Bowling Green beat Indiana
Indiana beat Missouri
Missouri beat Arkansas
Arkansas beat Mississippi
Mississippi beat Alabama
Alabama beat West Virginia
West Virginia beat Baylor

They are better than TCU.
Harvard beat Yale
Yale beat Army
Army beat Toledo
Toledo beat Bowling Green
Bowling Green beat Indiana
Indiana beat Missouri
Missouri beat Arkansas
Arkansas beat Mississippi
Mississippi beat Alabama
Alabama beat West Virginia
West Virginia beat Baylor
Baylor beat TCU

So it should be Harvard, Florida State, and then any two also-ran one-loss teams.

(For the record, Florida State's chain of victories begins with:
Florida State beat Wake Forest
Wake Forest beat Army
Army beat Toledo
Toledo beat Bowling Green
...and from there you can finish off the other chains.)

posted by grum@work at 02:14 PM on December 07

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

They've both seen Patriot missiles up close.

But...but patriot missiles (from the first Gulf War) weren't fired AT Iraqis. They were used in defense of incoming missiles FROM Iraqi forces. Therefore they were, by definition, in areas occupied by Americans and NOT containing Iraqi forces. Iraqis wouldn't EVER see patriot missiles "up close".

So not only is it tone-deaf, it's also stupidly inaccurate.

posted by grum@work at 09:50 AM on December 05

College Football Fan Map

I was going crazy for a few minutes because I KNEW we talked about this before, but the search options on Sportsfilter are, shall we say, "stunted".

Thankfully, some crafted Google searches from their main page and I was able to find the discussion, and where I even made mention of the Wisconsin thing.

They were wrong about not reaching a level anywhere else in the US, as Hayes County Nebraska supports the Cornhuskers at 88.4%.

Edit: They've got it at a zip code level now, and I can't pinpoint Hayes County Nebraska properly. In fact, it looks like the numbers for Nebraska aren't the same as they used to be...

posted by grum@work at 11:53 AM on December 04

Montreal Canadiens Jean Beliveau dead at 83

As all of the Canadian news/sports stations are reporting, Beliveau was the definition of "class". The fact that he turned down the prestigious Governor General position so he could spend more time with his (now fatherless) grandchildren is just an example of his character.

In terms of talent, he isn't in the inner ring of hockey hall of famers (Gretzky, Howe, Orr, (Maurice) Richard, Lemieux), but he's definitely in the next ring (Beliveau, (Bobby) Hull, Sawchuk, Harvey, Messier, Plante).

In terms of respect from fans, opponents, and teammates, he might be the head of the class.

posted by grum@work at 08:58 AM on December 03

MLB umpire Dale Scott comes out as gay in quietest way possible.

Taking Dale Scott's action as a spearhead for change, umpire Angel Hernandez came out today as "stupid", while C.B. Bucknor came out as "blind", and both are hoping for the same tolerance and acceptance from the fans and players that Scott has received.

posted by grum@work at 11:54 PM on December 02

Bye-bye Blazers:

The scene at UAB after the announcement.

"Fine, we'll keep the football program. All we need to do is make sure that the budget is covered each season. To do this, we'll have every student pay an extra $1200 in tuition a year. Is everyone okay with that? Hello? Are you there?"

posted by grum@work at 11:37 PM on December 02

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Or, tell the less-padded kickers that they might not want to get involved in play.

Of course, sometimes you get surprising results.

posted by grum@work at 02:09 PM on December 01

0-16 Philadelphia 76ers Two Games from Worst Start in NBA History

The challenge I gave to my friend was a to guess which is going to be higher:

76ers regular season wins this season
Cavaliers playoff wins this post-season

posted by grum@work at 02:03 PM on December 01

Ticats lose Grey Cup 20-16 to Stampeders

That ending to the Grey Cup for Hamilton is almost as bad as what happened to the Saskatchewan Roughriders a few years ago.


It was a hell of a weekend for exciting Canadian football...

posted by grum@work at 12:32 PM on December 01

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Hamilton defensive end uses Calgary punter as human missile to take out another player.

Sweet fancy Moses.

posted by grum@work at 10:01 AM on December 01

New India Super League Has Fourth-Highest Attendance in Soccer

The Indian [and Chinese] sports markets are the future, and I'm surprised it took this long for someone to try and capitalize on it.

Like they said, 1% share is still over 100million, so it might be worth it to try.

posted by grum@work at 07:00 PM on November 30

Toronto Blue Jays trade Brett Lawrie, 3 others to Oakland A’s for Josh Donaldson

If the Jays window of opportunity closes in two years with no playoff/pennant/World Series to show for it, then I think Anthopolous is probably going to be fired.

At least it won't be for inaction, as he's pretty much stepped up and made every move he can to try to bring a winner to Toronto.

The interesting thing will be to see how the Blue Jays fans react to this. Lawrie jerseys were the easy #1 seller in Toronto, and he was a BIG hit with the younger/hipper crowd (being Canadian, heavily tattooed, and wearing his heart on his sleeve).

Hopefully the smarter ones will realize that he was slowly turning into the Canadian version of Nick Johnson; tons of potential, flashes of greatness, a body made of balsa wood. Over the last three seasons, Lawrie has played 125, 107, and 70 games. He just can't be counted on to stay healthy.

posted by grum@work at 10:27 PM on November 29

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

The "half-time adjustments" must have been amazing.

91 points scored in the first half, 27 points scored in the second half.

posted by grum@work at 05:49 PM on November 28

CFL Playoff Pick 'Em, Grey Cup Edition

Calgary by 14



617 yards

posted by grum@work at 01:46 PM on November 27

Red Sox Sign Pablo Sandoval, Hanley Ramirez

His story is that the ownership wants to move into radio by buying a station, and that they would need "attractive" players to help sell it.

"Move into radio"?

Is this the 1920s?!

posted by grum@work at 10:35 AM on November 25

2015 Hall of Fame ballot released

The true home run champion is still Roger Maris.

You can believe that all you want, but you'd still be wrong.

posted by grum@work at 08:38 AM on November 25

2015 Hall of Fame ballot released

My ballot:

P.Martinez - obvious
R.Johnson - obvious
R.Clemens - obvious, but tragically a wasted vote I'm thinking
B.Bonds - obvious, but tragically a wasted vote I'm thinking
T.Raines - I'm pushing for him to keep climbing before he gets forgotten
C.Biggio - get him in now, to clear room.
M.McGwire - I'm beating my head against the wall, but it's the principle of the thing
M.Piazza - he should be in there before the 10 years are up
J.Smoltz - I'd like to see him join Maddux and Glavine
J.Bagwell - he should be in there before the 10 years are up...I think.

If I had room:
M.Mussina - ballot size issues
C.Schilling - ballot size issues
A.Trammell - he's a hopeless cause like McGwire/Clemens/Bonds, but not as good
E.Martinez - overlooked star
S.Sosa - unfairly tainted, but I still like others more than him

On the cusp:
G.Sheffield - probably going to be 5%'ed off the ballot, which is a shame (just like Kevin Brown)
L.Walker - Oh Canada!

posted by grum@work at 08:28 PM on November 24

Red Sox Sign Pablo Sandoval, Hanley Ramirez

They really don't give themselves much of a "down cycle" in Boston.

posted by grum@work at 08:06 PM on November 24

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Canadian goalie makes the save of the year.

posted by grum@work at 12:57 PM on November 24

Former NHL player, coach and executive Pat Quinn dies at age 71

Quinn and Tikhonov in the same day?

The hockey afterlife just got a little more hard-ass than yesterday.

posted by grum@work at 12:56 PM on November 24

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Stupid choking Chiefs ruining (early) my chance for a perfect NFL pick-em week.

posted by grum@work at 08:38 AM on November 24

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Is "stick-um" allowed again in the NFL?


Then Mr. Beckham Jr. is straight up amazing.

posted by grum@work at 10:37 PM on November 23

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

The Raptors fall behind the Cavaliers by 18 points in the first quarter, but then win the game by 17. They are now tops in the Eastern Conference, and have already beaten the top team in the Western Conference (Grizzlies).


posted by grum@work at 10:41 PM on November 22

Blind-sided: Blue Jackets’ Jack Johnson is bankrupt; who led him there is biggest shocker

I think it's also deserving of a main post.

It's amazing that large sums of money can so drastically change how family members see each other.

posted by grum@work at 02:05 PM on November 21

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Ha! I tried something similar with NHL teams. I wasn't looking for the longest link on a specific team, but the longest chain I could find in the NHL. Is there a player in the NHL right now that can be linked through trades/traded picks all the way back to the 70s? Or further?

It's tough to do because doesn't have complete transaction history, especially for things like expansion drafts and supplemental picks.


I know that Guy Lafleur* was picked in an Sharks/North Stars expansion draft by the Minnesota North Stars in 1991, and then traded back to Quebec by the Stars for Alan Haworth. Except, Haworth's page doesn't make any mention of that deal, so what else might be missing?

*I use Guy Lafleur as an example because he was picked by Montreal with a traded draft pick in 1971, played for a long time (retired, came back), was in a deal for a player (Sergei Zubov) that played for a while (until 2009). So I have a link of 1971-2009 (38 years).

posted by grum@work at 03:35 PM on November 20

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

At least something good came out of the thrashing the Leafs took on Tuesday night:

posted by grum@work at 11:37 AM on November 20

CFL Playoff Pick 'Em, Finals Edition

Montreal by 13

Calgary by 3



posted by grum@work at 04:31 PM on November 19

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Yeah, I want to turn the lights down low, throw on some Barry White, and get comfortable with those MLB Statcast Player Tracking videos. If I were to somehow get access to the raw data, I'd probably quit my job and just waste away in front of the computer while playing with the info.

posted by grum@work at 03:11 PM on November 18

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Martin has had two great years, but 5 years for a pair of knees that have caught more than 8,000 innings seems like a lot. You have to go back to 2007/ 2008 for another pair of years where Martin performed like he has the last two seasons.

As a Jays fan, I can only respond with:

"Nahnahnah I CAN'T HEAR YOU!"

posted by grum@work at 08:42 AM on November 18

Penny-pinching, no more!

The big worry is injury, but I'm sure there are injury clauses built into these contracts, and insurance is available.

There is always insurance, but I'm not hearing any talk about "milestones" for any of the money he is getting, so it's probably just "get paid for living", and if he doesn't play because of injury, then the insurance covers some of it.

posted by grum@work at 03:32 PM on November 17

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

That is crazy money for a over-30 catcher, but if the Jays know their window of opportunity is about 3 years at most, they might as well throw some more money into the fire and hope that works.

Martin being Canadian probably helped their case a bit.

posted by grum@work at 03:15 PM on November 17

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Holy crap, Sunday was a slaughter for my NFL pick'em selections. If I had really Costanza'd, I would have won the week walking away...

posted by grum@work at 10:42 PM on November 16

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

Yeah, the Faroe Islands one was the big shock to me. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the score with only minutes remaining. That's the kind of loss that gets the manager/national team president fired.

posted by grum@work at 03:47 PM on November 16

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Bryan Murray's ultimate battle

Just another reminder that everyone should get tested on a regular basis. Murray's always been a good guy, even when he was running the show for my team's arch-rival (for a while).

posted by grum@work at 09:59 AM on November 14

FIFA Goal of the Year nominees

The most famous one of those is the Van Persie header. It's probably the one that made me leap out of my chair the furthest during the World Cup.

The most mind-blowing one is the Zlatan body-twisting back-heel one. I really don't understand how his brain can figure out the physical requirements for half of the highlight reel goals he scores.

The most technically amazing one is the Stephanie Roche goal, which is also the furthest away from even getting noticed if it wasn't for YouTube. Three touches without it hitting the ground, and putting it inside the post? That's some serious skill.

Just a reminder of the insanity that is Zlatan's 2013 winner.

posted by grum@work at 09:52 AM on November 14

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

NL MVP: Kershaw
NL Cy Young: Kershaw
NL ROY: Kershaw DeGrom
NL Manager: Kershaw Williams

AL MVP: Trout
AL Cy Young: Hernandez
AL ROY: Abreu
AL Manager: Showalter

I got 7 out of 8 right. If I had gone with my gut and picked Kluber for the AL Cy Young, instead of caving to the nagging feeling that the voters would go with the "name brand" in King Felix, I would have run the table.

posted by grum@work at 07:23 PM on November 13

CFL Playoff Pick 'Em, Semi-Finals Edition

Montreal by 6
Saskatchewan by 3

posted by grum@work at 10:09 AM on November 13

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Today is the birthday of the most famous major league baseball player to do nothing of note on the playing field.

posted by grum@work at 10:51 AM on November 12

Joe Hart prevented a goal

When I saw it happen live, I knew exactly what had happened and I was glad the ref disallowed the goal (even though I was cheering for the minnow).

That said, I don't think the ref should have allowed the re-kick: (from the wiki link)

Free kick taken by the goalkeeper

If, after the ball is in play, the goalkeeper touches the ball again (except with his hands), before it has touched another player:

An indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team, the kick to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred.

QPR should have had an indirect free kick from the spot of the original kick (near the penalty spot, it seems). That would have been exciting to watch

posted by grum@work at 10:31 AM on November 12

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

That's "play of the year" material, right there.

posted by grum@work at 11:02 AM on November 10