Recent Comments by tron7

Chris Wondolowski Relives That Shot

I don't mind too much that the better team advanced.

It's a different kind of disappointment than that. Wondo's miss stole a great story from us. The fact that Belgium was so good made Howard look that much more the magician and made the story that much better. The improbability of it was the draw. Then comes the improbable miss. The fact that Wondolowski is a grinder and an all around nice guy almost makes it worse as he would have made a great hero.

posted by tron7 at 04:07 PM on December 19

The Boston Celtics have traded Rajon Rondo to Dallas

If they finalized the deal in time, Brandan Wright would be tradeable again by the trade deadline and I think he would pull a decent haul. Wright is limited in what he can do but extraordinarily good at scoring efficiently and not turning the ball over. That's a lot more valuable to playoff teams than it will be to the Celtics over the next few years.

I don't really like the trade for the Mavs as it tinkers with the league's best offense and I don't think Rondo will do much to help their defense. Ultimately, I trust Carlisle to make it work but it's not a trade I would have made.

posted by tron7 at 11:26 AM on December 19

Can True Sports Fans Switch to a New Favorite Team?

Still love this opening from FreeDarko (RIP) on liberated fandom:

I've heard that the worst thing you can do in the wide world of sport fandom is be a fair weather one. Okay, I can get with that. If your point of reference is the tribal sphere, and you dawdle on the margins until there's good reason to perk up, it's not just insincere. It implies that the team owes you something, that your devotion to them depends on their proving themselves devotion-worthy. If you live in a city low itching for chauvinistic rallying points, the machine of pride doesn't operate if some people have the right to stand to judgment. I'm not saying that hometown fans are always unthinking monoliths. But if the team becomes a take-it-or-leave-it proposition, then the circuits of faith are jammed up to their core.

I think it's well-known, though, that FreeDarko could give a fuck less about provincial forms of worship. We exist on a higher, or at least more time-consuming, plane known as "liberated fandom." Put simply, we like the teams that meet our vague and furry criteria, such that our sensibility can find a match worth its while. This is no more shocking than only reading books that get good reviews, or avoiding a shitty bar even though your friend works there. I don't mean to disparage all ye fine people who have home teams, or insist that the two are mutually exclusive. Hell, some of my proudest moments as a watcher of the game have come when I've been able to approximate some sort of Arenas-derived pull for the Wizards. Alas, I am a wanderer by trade and a malcontent by spirit, and thus must make my way without the comfort of community.

posted by tron7 at 06:43 PM on December 17

Can True Sports Fans Switch to a New Favorite Team?

I'm all over the map.

MLB: I've dabbled with the Twins when I was in school in the Twin Cities and the Rockies now that I live in Denver but I will always be a Brewers fan first and foremost. They were THE team of my childhood and I spent more hours listening to Uecker than I can count.

NFL: Despite living in Wisconsin I got roped in by Elway early and held dual fanship until Super Bowl XXXII when my hand was forced and I became a full fledged Broncos fan. I'm the only non-Packer fan in my entire extended family. I do find myself pulling for the Packers but it's mostly in hoping my dad doesn't have a heart attack.

NBA: I was a fan of KG's Wolves in college, rooted for the Bucks after I was out of school, and root for the Nuggets now that I'm in Denver. Though, with Shaw as coach, my eye has started to wander back to that sexy Bucks squad. I'm not really concerned if I'm seen as a True Sports Fan or not. I get as emotionally invested as anybody. The NBA seems to lend itself most to the idea of liberated fandom.

EPL: Like rcade, I've been following since 2006 but I've yet to acquire any kind of fandom. I've cast my lot in with ManU, Everton, and Arsenal for stints but nothing has stuck.

posted by tron7 at 06:34 PM on December 17

Lure Banned from Competitive Fishing for Being 'Too Effective'

So, I guess the flasher up front draws their attention and then it looks like a school in the back? I've done a lot of fishing in my life but I'm still amused by the things you can make fish want to eat.

posted by tron7 at 03:14 PM on December 02

Searching for Balance: The NBA’s Lopsided Conference Problem

I don't want the league to reformat the playoffs or conferences. The East is bad, real bad, and there will be some lousy playoff teams in the East and some team out west is going to win 50 games and miss the playoffs and I'm fine with that. I don't need everything to be 100% fair. I can see why the West owners and even the fans can get riled up about how bad the East is but I don't think it helps the league that much to rearrange everything.

posted by tron7 at 03:11 PM on December 02

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

76ers regular season wins this season
Eagles regular season wins this season

posted by tron7 at 02:58 PM on December 01

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

It's the worst team I've ever seen. A lot of weird things happen in an 82 game schedule and they'll fall into some wins but it's hard to imagine this team getting to double digits.

Compare the 76ers roster to the 11-12 Bobcats who won only 7 games out of 66. I think the Bobcats probably win seven out of every ten games versus this 76ers squad.

posted by tron7 at 01:15 PM on December 01

NFL Pick 'Em, Week 12

Would have been better off following the Costanza Principle this week. 5/13 so far. I also pick against the spread for funsies and there I'm 3/13. Yikes.

posted by tron7 at 11:34 AM on November 17

Clif Bar Drops Sponsorship of 5 Climbers Over Risks They Take

Well I started drawing up a response but the statements from Clif Bar and Honnold are perfect as is.

"We have and always will support athletes in many adventure-based sports, including climbing," the company said. "And inherent in the idea of adventure is risk. We appreciate that assessing risk is a very personal decision. This isn't about drawing a line for the sport or limiting athletes from pursuing their passions. We're drawing a line for ourselves. We understand that this is a gray area, but we felt a need to start somewhere and start now."

And from Honnold:

"It's a general reflection on risk," Honnold said. "The risk decision that Clif is making is the same kind of decision that we all make as athletes. I think it's completely fair for them to draw a line. It's a very personal decision. If Clif thought about it and said that that's the line that they want to take, I can't begrudge that. That's the same kind of line I draw with risk."

posted by tron7 at 11:32 AM on November 17

Denver Broncos Fan Disappears During Game

Honestly, the green chile makes up for any lack of culture.

posted by tron7 at 11:34 AM on October 29

Denver Broncos Fan Disappears During Game

It makes sense if you think about it. The concessions at Invesco are average at best and there's only one reason to go to Pueblo.

On edit: Invesco? What year is it?

posted by tron7 at 11:06 AM on October 29

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

That assumes perfect umpiring, which we do not have.

Oh, I'm well aware of that truth. Robot umps, man. Can't wait.

posted by tron7 at 06:24 PM on October 15

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

What makes pitch framing joy-inducing while flopping/diving in other sports is roundly criticized? In both cases the player resorts to trying to fool the official instead of trying to win the play in honest competition. I think the sport would be better if there weren't important strategies revolving around trying to get calls you don't deserve.

posted by tron7 at 10:35 AM on October 14

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Just thinking about them has me giggling. How can you be against that?

I've played my whole life and I've been that batter too many times. There's no joy for me in missed calls, just the memory residue of how I felt after a thousand lost at bats. There's not many feelings better than squaring up a baseball and not many worse than getting the rug yanked from under you by an umpire.

posted by tron7 at 01:04 AM on October 09

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Huh? I'm not sure what you mean by "more human element".

Oh... damn, I thought it was a pretty good joke. They always get better when you have to explain them, right? Selig once said in reference to instant replay, "I think the human element is vital to baseball." I, for one, can not wait until baseball is umpired by robots.

posted by tron7 at 02:31 PM on October 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

In all honesty, they look like the exact same pitch with the pitcher, catcher, hitter, and umpire moving exactly the same way.

I definitely see more human element in the second gif.

posted by tron7 at 11:20 AM on October 08

The NBA has a new TV deal.

Somehow this TV deal exceeded even the wildest expectations similar to the way that the prices of franchises recently has surprised basically anyone that wasn't trying to buy one. Or maybe the people buying franchises were privy to the upcoming TV deal. Anyway, there is a lot of money being spread around and it's not clear to me why.

These next few summers of free agency are going to be bonkers. Everyone is going to have cap flexibility, literally everyone. I think it'll be a mad house. I'm also interested to see if the salaries of the mid-level talent, the 5-10 million dollar guys now, will raise with the cap. Currently, those guys are the most overpaid players relative to their production. If that level of player doesn't see a pay raise it might be more viable to win without a superstar in the NBA. Getting rid of max contracts could also do the trick.

I root for a team in the non-preferred NBA market of Denver. I don't necessarily want the NBA to focus on small markets but I think it would be beneficial if franchises had an alternate path to building a contender than trying to find a superstar at all costs.

posted by tron7 at 04:28 PM on October 06

Video of Ray Rice Elevator Punch on Partner Released

I don't think the NFL should have to do anything about this, if they hadn't already set a precedent.

I agree with this as well and I think it's gong to be difficult to ever go back now. I don't know that it will ever happen at this point. I do know that this case would probably not be the best time to wash your hands of dispensing discipline.

Further, I'm really not a fan of this broader trend in recent years, this PR-driven idea that until the angry twittering hordes have been sated in their lust for vengeance and biblical retribution, you simply must keep punishing private individuals in some publicly visible way.

This bugs me even when I think the person who Twitter's Eye of Sauron is gazing at is deserving of scorn. I'm here for the protest but then it starts turning into a mob, flipping over cars and breaking in windows, and suddenly I'm not so keen on the cause.

There's a clear double standard at work when it comes to male and female violence that I call "incredibly sexist".

I guess I'm fine with the double standard. I don't think it's a product of sexism, I think it's a product of the reality of men being generally bigger and more capable of causing physical damage. If I seeing it become more of a problem going the other way I'll change my view.

posted by tron7 at 01:02 PM on September 11

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

The Pirates' John Holdzkom has brought the palmball back to Major League Baseball.

I can't figure out why that would do anything other than go deceptively slowly. Also, where is the best place to find more of this pitch-porn? I've seen the PitchCraft stuff over at Grantland and need more.

posted by tron7 at 04:59 PM on September 10

Video of Ray Rice Elevator Punch on Partner Released


Ooh, are we starting a hivemind?!

posted by tron7 at 04:50 PM on September 10

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The NBA is negotiating a new media deal that is reportedly in the $2 billion dollars a year range which would boost the cap by about $16 million for the 2016-17 season.

posted by tron7 at 10:47 AM on September 09

Video of Ray Rice Elevator Punch on Partner Released

It is baffling to me that these consequences weren't dolled out originally. Who would've complained if this had been the original punishment? A handful of Ravens fans who would've been silenced as soon as the video leaked. Instead, the league and team piss off everyone with uneven punishments that look like they are only protecting their bottoms and bottom lines. So it looks like the League wanting to protect it's stars but then the league is still crushing players for marijuana. I realize there is language in the CBA specifically regarding marijuana but Goodell has shown no qualms about flexing his power before. Who is going to turn away from their fandom because Josh Gordon got his suspension reduced or removed?

The motivations have always seemed very clear when it came to the NFL and Goodell but this year it seems like he just let go of the wheel.

posted by tron7 at 10:36 AM on September 09

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Are we doing the NFL pick-em again?

posted by tron7 at 11:11 AM on September 02

Yours Truly, Dr. Z.

It's a cruel condition for anyone but it seems fantastically cruel for someone who spent his career as a communicator. Great job by NFL Films to get the story across for him.

posted by tron7 at 05:00 PM on August 17

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Westbrook was a liability at first.

Westbrook wasn't good his rookie year but he was far from a disaster. Anthony Bennett's season was on a different level of suck.

Andrew Bynum comes to mind

It's 300 minutes from an 18 year old but it's still a good example of a player having a horrible rookie season and turning into an all star. It's not quite as bad as Bennett's rookie season but it's close enough.

posted by tron7 at 10:40 AM on August 06

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

How many good NBA players do you know who started off with a year that bad? I'm struggling to think of any examples at all. Would I completely give up on him? No, but I also wouldn't think twice about trading him for a top ten player.

posted by tron7 at 01:42 AM on August 06

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Looks like Kevin Love will be going to Cleveland by way of Philadelphia.

I thought they'd be be a 50 win team before and I think they'll crush the East now. Losing Wiggins hurts them about 3-4 years from now but there's a significant chance that Wiggins never gets as good as Love is right now. The Cavs butchered LeBron's first go around by overpaying for marginal or over the hill talent. This is different, Kevin Love is just entering his prime and is already a top 5-10 player.

So Cleveland trades away it's two #1 picks to land Kevin Love?

Anthony Bennet had such a horrible year that his value is well below what you would normally see for a #1 pick. I mean, it was nearly Adam Morrison bad.

posted by tron7 at 04:46 PM on August 05

Ray Rice Suspended for 2 Games

...Jason Whitlock who told us we couldn't judge Ray Rice because we didn't know what happened and the fact the DA is letting him off suggests there must be extenuating circumstances because DAs aren't in the habit of cutting young black men a break.

I haven't really been following this story. Do we know why the DA is letting him off? I think that bugs me more than the length of the NFL suspension.

Of all the suspensions Goodell has handed out I can't believe this is the one he chooses not to be heavy-handed on. He had to know the league was going to come under scrutiny for a small suspension.

posted by tron7 at 05:38 PM on July 25

Pitcher Freaks Out Because of Bunt in 2-Run Game

This is probably the most baffling use of unwritten rules I've ever seen. Usually there's something you could point to that, if you were feeling really touchy, you could construe as being disrespectful somehow. This one though, there's just nothing there.

I'm starting to think baseball needs unwritten rules just to have something to get worked up about. Baseball doesn't have the physical interaction with the opposing team that the other team sports have so there's less tangible things to get upset about. If you really want to hate another team, out of frustration most likely, and you don't have any hit batters or hard slides, you have to search and grasp for reasons why. Unwritten rules are conveniently not written down so you can always find one obscure enough that someone on the other team is bound to offend it out of ignorance.

posted by tron7 at 03:11 PM on July 21

Germany Wins World Cup

When Kramer was a late addition for Khedira I was sure it was a day he would never forget.

posted by tron7 at 10:52 AM on July 15

SportsFilter's World Cup Confidence Pool Winner

So the win essentially came down to my dislike for Tiki-taka and my 50% Dutch blood.

posted by tron7 at 10:45 AM on July 15

LeBron James Returning to Cleveland

As for maximizing his money, why is LeBron the only guy who signed this sort of deal?

Because it's riskier. There's no one else who has signed recently that would be a sure fire max guy in two years. If Bosh and Melo can get 100 million it's safer to just do it now because they are less likely than LeBron to be worth substantially more in two years.

posted by tron7 at 12:49 PM on July 13

LeBron James Returning to Cleveland

Leaving aside Gilbert, what did the fanbase do other than express anger and disappointment?

Other than the jersey burning, I saw the same sentiments that Gilbert outlined in his letter coming out of the mouths and keyboards of every Cavs fan I interacted with. The circumstances explain why the city reacted as it did but I don't think it excuses them.

posted by tron7 at 03:08 PM on July 11

Argentina Faces The Netherlands for Spot in World Cup Final

Woah. It did not look like it was going to stop. That would have been amazing.

posted by tron7 at 02:12 PM on July 11

LeBron James Returning to Cleveland

Maybe that was Cleveland's 4 years in the wilderness before they were taken to the promised land?

posted by tron7 at 02:05 PM on July 11

LeBron James Returning to Cleveland

Ahh, I think you're onto something here, it was retroactive karma.

I would be happy for them if the fanbase and Gilbert hadn't reacted so childishly to LeBron leaving in 2010. I can't think of anything a NBA fanbase has done that is more distasteful to me. To see them get LeBron back, on top of the first overall picks the lottery has been cramming down their throat, rubs my sense of justice the wrong way.

posted by tron7 at 01:56 PM on July 11

LeBron James Returning to Cleveland

The letter from Dan Gilbert, the booing of the Cleveland fans, the jerseys being burned -- seeing all that was hard for them.

Does any city deserve this less than Cleveland? Everybody makes mistakes, sure, but usually you have to pay for them.

posted by tron7 at 12:59 PM on July 11

Jason Kidd joins Bucks as head coach

Bear in mind this is also the new Milwaukee ownership group that may have paid up to $150M more than needed to acquire arguably the league's weakest franchise.

Or $100M less than the highest offer. Yeah, it seems high but every franchise being sold right now is going for way over the expected price.

I wouldn't say he was "smelling like a rose"

Well Buck's ownership would. I appreciate that Lasry and Edens wanted to make a splash but I can't believe they went with this particular cannonball.

posted by tron7 at 10:07 PM on June 30

Jason Kidd joins Bucks as head coach

The Bucks saw how he turned around the mess in Brooklyn...

That's one way to look at it. You could also say he was a big part of the mess at the beginning of the season. When the dust settled he had a team that finished 8 games under their preseason over/under and wasn't a serious playoff contender. There was bad and good. I don't see how he gets out of the season smelling like a rose when he looked like a bumbling idiot for the first couple months of the season.

posted by tron7 at 12:40 PM on June 30

Jason Kidd joins Bucks as head coach

Why is Jason Kidd a sought-after coaching prospect? Wait, I'll rephrase. Is Kidd using witchcraft or sorcery in order to convince owners to hire him? The Bucks gave up two second rounders for Kidd and there was some talk of giving him full control, even if it's just the coaching position for now. I have no idea how Kidd commands this level of respect.

posted by tron7 at 11:42 AM on June 30

Luis Suarez Bites Opponent at World Cup

I'm really amused by Suarez's insistence on biting dudes.

posted by tron7 at 02:14 PM on June 24

LeBron Taking His Talents Out of South Beach

I want him to go back to Cleveland...

There is nothing I want less. Cleveland is probably the only team he could go to where I would actively root against him.

posted by tron7 at 01:09 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.

It would help but it's not a requirement. Hell, even at max money he's wildly underpaid. If you can't put a contender around LeBron, it's not LeBron's fault.

Miami as constructed is just fine, by the way. They could transition away from their frenetic trapping, and physically demanding, defense that's been producing diminishing results and continue to rule the East with their current roster plus a few minor tweaks.

posted by tron7 at 01:07 PM on June 24

World Cup Confidence Pool Leader

Something is definitely wrong with the scoring, it says I'm winning?!

posted by tron7 at 05:20 PM on June 20

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

For reference, here's Alex Avila getting hit on Friday by David Ortiz's follow through. See the difference in Papi's reaction?

It proves that Machado doesn't care but not necessarily that he did it on purpose. If it was intentional, it looks a lot more natural than his bat throws do.

posted by tron7 at 12:00 AM on June 09

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Machado overreacted to being tagged in the chest forcefully (while attempting to dodge the tag)

I'll say. That's pretty touchy if that's what started the whole thing. Why they decided to retaliate the next day, after they'd presumably seen a replay, is a little perplexing. I guess once you start jawing you don't want to back down even when there's video evidence showing a rather benign play.

What would have happened if he had actually hit the pitcher with the bat?

posted by tron7 at 11:55 PM on June 08

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Argh... linked before I completely read. Not Win Shares but is using Win Shares.

posted by tron7 at 01:06 PM on June 04

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

Gasol doesn't get enough credit for his stretch from '08 - '11. His rank in Win Shares over that stretch: 4th in '08-09, 7th in '09-10 (65 games), 2nd in '10-11. He played with Kobe so he gets overlooked but his numbers definitely warranted some MVP attention.

There's also his Spanish National team accomplishments as the basketball hall of fame is not limited to NBA performance.

Even so I'm not sure if he's hall of fame or not. I really don't have a good handle for exactly how good you have to be for basketball hall of fame consideration.

On edit: Here is an ESPN the magazine article suggesting a re-do of the hall with an arbitrary Win Shares cutoff of 100 and Gasol is at 113.1

There's a giant ad blocking my link button

posted by tron7 at 12:48 PM on June 04

CNN: Steve Ballmer Reaches Deal to Buy Clippers for $2 Billion

big money, high profile, racist vanquishing owner in town looking to prove himself with the Clippers.

I know he says he plans on keeping the team in Los Angeles but it was just a year ago he was trying to move the Kings to Seattle. I'm not sure whether it's better to split the LA market or own the Seattle market or how much that even matters to Ballmer.

posted by tron7 at 10:20 AM on May 30

Landon Donovan Left Off World Cup Roster

I had heard some rumblings that this might happen. I'm not sure it effects the USMNT's chances all that much but it really makes me sad.

posted by tron7 at 10:54 AM on May 23

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

And Kawhi Leonard, the quietest superstar, leads the team in Win Shares.

posted by tron7 at 10:50 AM on May 23

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

This is probably #2 on the top 5 list of reasons why soccer/football isn't bigger in North America.

It's the #1 thing that's mocked but I don't think it's that big of a reason why North Americans aren't into soccer. The NBA has plenty of flopping and they're doing all right.

posted by tron7 at 02:35 PM on April 15

Four strikes and you're out

Ahhh tron7, it appears you need a calibration on your sarcasm detector.

Is there a version of Poe's Law that applies to umpire satire? It's either that or I'm still smarting from the bat being taken out of my hands on my first at bat of the summer.

posted by tron7 at 05:49 PM on April 04

Four strikes and you're out

Umpires do not make the wrong call! They might make the incorrect call at certain times, but because the umpire makes the call, and it is a judgement call, the call is not wrong. If replay is used, and the call is overruled, the umpire was not wrong, merely incorrect.

I call therefore it's right. Might help you sleep at night but it's infuriating to players having to deal with the "right" albeit incorrect calls.

posted by tron7 at 12:50 PM on April 04

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

The Rays cut 3,000 seats at the Trop, mostly to make a walkway that circles the field.

Meanwhile the Rockies cut a bunch of seats (I can't seem to find how many) to put in a rooftop bar (AKA the Party Deck or Poop Deck depending on who you're talking to). There's been some criticism regarding the Monfort's spending priorities and focus on booze, there's already a microbrewery in the stadium. Personally, I think it looks great but I assume it's going to be hell getting in there for awhile. I'd really like it if they opened her up when the Rockies are out of town. Having a beer overlooking the empty stadium just after the sun drops over the mountains and sets their rims aglow... well, that sounds mighty nice.

posted by tron7 at 09:19 PM on April 01

Doctors Staple Aroldis Chapman Back Together

Heard about the play but I hadn't seen it until now. Wow, that is terrifying.

posted by tron7 at 08:02 PM on March 22

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Decker was telling one of the local guys here that the Jet's offer was far and away the most money he was being offered. The other offers being in the 5 million per year range. The Broncos didn't even make an offer according to him.

posted by tron7 at 11:11 AM on March 14

In Fake Classes Scandal, UNC Fails Its Athletes—and Whistle-Blower

Show me an NBA game from the last decade better than George Mason getting to the Final Four.

Game 6, 2013 NBA Finals

Though, I don't watch college sports very often anymore so one seems infinitely more important than the other through my eyes.

posted by tron7 at 01:13 PM on March 04

Missouri All-American Defensive Lineman Michael Sam Announces He Is Gay

How many DPOY awards is it going to take to tuck that girlfriend story under the fold? I still can barely believe that story was real.

posted by tron7 at 02:18 PM on February 11