Recent Comments by rcade

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

Did anyone else catch this recent ESPN video segment of the Rapinoe-to-Wambach header in 2011? Epic.

posted by rcade at 12:14 PM on July 01

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

I love the general lack of diving and theatrics in the women's game. The dubious tumbles by Rapinoe I noted last night struck me as an outlier.

My impression is that women are more likely to want to appear tough enough for the physicality of the game, so they don't engage in operatic contortions like the men. I love how many times they don't topple on contact and leap right back up after being knocked down.

But it could be a cultural issue unrelated to gender. If some top women's players start getting an opponent carded when they get a little nudge and fall down like a sniper got them, this tactic may become legitimized.

It's not like they don't play to the refs sometimes. Remember the Canada goalkeeper in the past World Cup getting a penalty kick for the U.S. because of slow play? Abby Wambach had been counting the seconds out loud all match long when the keeper held the ball. It was an incredible example of working a ref.

posted by rcade at 12:10 PM on July 01

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

The Fox Sports 1 postgame show aired the 1999 World Cup Final highlights where Brianna Scurry stopped a penalty kick and Brandi Chastain scored the legendary shirt-doffing winner. Seeing it again, I was shocked by how far Scurry moved off her line before the China player struck her PK attempt. She takes a step and a half forward before the block, as you can see at 8:47 in the YouTube link.

posted by rcade at 10:42 PM on June 30

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

This has to be considered the best defensive team the USWNT has ever fielded, or close to it. The team puts a lot of pressure on an opponent when its scoring opportunities are shut down so quickly. Germany kept making terrible final kicks, which suggested to me it was feeling the pressure.

The takedown by Julie Johnston that gave Germany its penalty kick probably should have been a red card. The penalty earned by Alex Morgan looked like one that would've been called outside the box 9 times out of 10 in the Premiership. If there's a word in German for a profound sense of outrage, it's going to be used a lot on Twitter tonight.

posted by rcade at 09:15 PM on June 30

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

I wonder if Rapinoe was overselling those two collisions near the end of the first half.

posted by rcade at 07:50 PM on June 30

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

Beautiful pass by Heath to Morgan in the 13th minute. Thought the U.S. had the lead but Angerer was too good.

posted by rcade at 07:16 PM on June 30

U.S. Defeats Germany, Advances to Women's World Cup Final

I liked Heath against China. Lots of high-energy play and she was good at creating in traffic.

Wambach is so slow now it's hard for me to watch. She was my favorite U.S. player on either team for several years.

posted by rcade at 06:55 PM on June 30

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Lleyton Hewitt's opening match today in his final Wimbledon is turning into a barn burner. He and Jarkko Nieminen are in the fifth and deciding set, currently 9-8 Nieminen.

posted by rcade at 12:20 PM on June 29

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

The confidence pool is up to date. Ying Yang Mafia and I got all of our top four in the semifinals. Can't imagine that will ever happen again.

posted by rcade at 11:40 PM on June 27

The 11th Annual chicobangs Memorial SpoFi CFL Pick 'Em

This is the first year I'm making picks based on actual information. I've also picked a team to root for, the Redblacks, because I like it when there's nowhere to go but up.

So far I'm 0 for 2. Information is overrated.

posted by rcade at 01:21 PM on June 27

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

That was exceptionally harsh, but I like the idea a remark like that won't be as outrageous in the future. When you can have a laugh at someone's expense for public religiosity, it'll mean faith isn't such a dominant force in cultural life that almost no one can get elected to Congress while claiming to be an atheist. I read and watch a lot from England these days, and they take the piss out of someone over religion far more than Americans do.

But still, ouch. Pedro Strop has a job where 100-mph projectiles are fired back at his head, and in that performance it was a particularly acute risk. Be the bigger man, Bob.

posted by rcade at 10:58 AM on June 27

U.S. Defeats China, Advances to Women's World Cup Semifinals

posted by rcade at 12:41 AM on June 27

The 11th Annual chicobangs Memorial SpoFi CFL Pick 'Em

Montreal by 10

Calgary by 13

Edmonton by 4

Winnipeg by 8

Tonight's game will be on Watch ESPN.

posted by rcade at 06:42 PM on June 25

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Champion: Cixelsyd

All hail Cixelsyd!

Ic23b ties for the best round, escapes the Costanza.

My trendline isn't pretty. If there had been another round I would've scored -1.

posted by rcade at 10:50 AM on June 25

NHL Playoff Pick 'Em Champion: Cixelsyd

Round 1Round 2Round 3Round 4Total
cixelsyd784524
tahoemoj851519
jagsnumberone663318
tommytrump960217
holden662317
Howard_T553417
rcade753116
grum@work642416
bender553114
ic23b540514
dfleming661--13
Ufez Jones641112
NoMich6----410
MrFrisby--4206

Please doublecheck your Stanley Cup round scores.

Chicago Blackhawks win in 6 games.

Bonus point results:

Longest game: 0 OTs (0 winners)

TV rating: 3.1 after game 6 (closest 3.2, jagsnumberone; 2.7, bender; 2.5, holden)

First scorer: Alex Killorn (0 winners)

Conn Smythe winner: Duncan Keith (3 winners)

Most goals: 2, Teuvo Teravainen, Antoine Vermette, Brandon Saad, Cedric Paquette, Killorn (0 winners)

Most assists: 4, Marian Hossa, Victor Hedman (0 winners)

Most points: 4, Hossa, Teravainen, Hedman, Ryan Callahan (0 winners)

Best plus/minus: 3, Duncan Keith (7 winners)

Most penalty minutes: 6, Braydon Coburn, Saad, Killorn (1 winner)

Starting goaltender with the best GAA: 1.69, Corey Crawford (5 winners)

posted by rcade at 10:47 AM on June 25

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

Ah. This would help explain your point of view.

Rose was one of my childhood idols, but I supported the punishment at the time it was handed down and for years afterwards. But this 2004 SportsFilter thread shows I'm at least 11 years into thinking enough is enough.

Here's my take back then:

Rose's poor-me act is tiresome, but as I've said before, 15 years' banishment is a sufficient sentence for what he finally admits to doing. Baseball ought to respond to his admission by reinstating him. ... I don't agree with lifetime bans in sport.

posted by rcade at 04:38 PM on June 24

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

That exchange between Miggy and the kid is hilarious. The Rangers need to sign that kid as a fan.

As for the other video, the TV announcers really get on their high horse against that fan on the game broadcast. They don't even give him props for the epic snag.

Announcer 1: "Mister, there are bigger things in life than a foul ball. That's unbelievable."

Announcer 2: "He's supposed to be kicked out of the game, too."

posted by rcade at 11:54 AM on June 24

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

He said specifically he did not bet on baseball as a player and I find it extremely unlikely that Rose does not remember his player-manager days as him playing the game.

Does Rose strike you as a person who speaks with precision and self-knowledge about himself all the time? I was challenged to document where Rose admitted to betting as a player-manager and I think I've done so for 1986.

Rose was an All-Star as a player through 1982 and played 151 games in 1983 with the Phillies. He was traded from the Expos to the Reds on August 15, 1984, and hired to be player-manager the same day. He talks in his book about gambling being something he chased for excitement as a manager when the thrill of playing was no longer enough.

The scenario that looks the most likely to me, in terms of what he's said and what we've known since Dowd, is that he began compulsively gambling on the Reds to win somewhere between August 1984 to 1986.

As to when that began, he started himself 110 games in 1985 and was named an All-Star that year, chasing the all-time hit record until getting 4,192 on Sept. 11, 1985. I imagine that pursuit was his major preoccupation -- it certainly was mine during the season. He wouldn't need to be finding extra reasons to be excited.

With that over, he turned 45 on April 14 as the 1986 season began and started 61 games (career low), hitting .219 (career low). Here's an analysis of his play that season.

He admits in his book that he gambled before the 1986 post-season, but doesn't know the date. He just knows he first spoke of doing it during that post-season. So there he is gambling sometime in 1986 when he's playing out the string and hitting like Mario Mendoza.

Are you really taking the position that you would have favored Rose for reinstatement if he wasn't still lying about betting on games as a player, even though he admitted in his book gambling as a player-manager in at least 1986, which is the year the new ESPN story documents?

In 2004, Rose appeared at a church in Royersford, Pennsylvania, and was interviewed by the senior pastor before a packed house about his actions. He said this:

It wasn't that I was calling somebody everyday and betting on the games. I told the guy before the season that I want to bet on my team every night a certain amount. No one in the clubhouse ever knew I was betting; no coaches, no players, no clubhouse guys, and I was wrong.

I was wrong. However, I wasn't betting when I was a player. It's when I became a manager because I had so much love and respect for my players because they were like my sons. I wanted to bet on them because I needed something extra because I wasn't getting the at-bats or playing in the field, and I was wrong.

When Rose says he started gambling "when I became a manager," do you think he meant "when I became a manager exclusively and was no longer a player-manager"? That seems like a strained interpretation to me -- but it's the one all over the media today. If anyone finds a contemporary media account that acknowledges Rose has said in the past he gambled as a player-manager, I'd love to see the link.

posted by rcade at 10:43 AM on June 24

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

Oh, I see you've fallen victim to Manfred's tactic of not taking a stance on anything that is ever put in front of him, regardless of of how silly it might sound.

Manfred didn't just pay lip service to the idea of reinstating Rose. He reviewed documents related to the ban, arranged to meet Rose sometime in July after the All-Star Game in Cincinnati, allowed Rose to participate in All-Star Game festivities and "didn't nix Rose's new analyst job with Fox Sports," per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

It doesn't sound like Manfred was being glib when he opened the door to Rose's reinstatement. The new commish was seriously entertaining the idea, which is no doubt why somebody broke the law and leaked documents under court-ordered seal to throw a wrench into it.

posted by rcade at 11:44 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

As an aside, it would be ironic if Rose betting as a player hurt him more than Rose betting as a manager. A manager betting on his own team to win is worse than a player doing the same thing. A manager could do things to win a game he bet on that hurt his team's chances in future games, such as burning through relievers like there's no tomorrow.

A player betting on himself to win would do the same things he does any other time, unless you think a player would play harder with a bet on the line and be more likely to risk injury. But Rose was famous for hustle all the time.

It's a severe violation of the rules either way, but a manager betting on his team is clearly the worse offense.

posted by rcade at 11:39 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

However, if he admitted at the beginning to everything he conceded to at this point, then maybe he'd have a much better case to plead to the commissioner.

Of course. But I tire of suggestions on how Rose could solve his present circumstance through time travel and/or being less of an asshole. What's the point? I've never said Rose did nothing to contribute to the length of his "lifetime" ban.

Are you sure about this?

Rose was a player-manager from 1984 to 1986 and manager from 1987 to 1989. In his book he admitted to betting on the Reds to win frequently while he was manager in 1987, but he also admits that it began earlier than that:

I can't honestly remember the first time I bet on baseball. But I can remember the first time I spoke openly about it. I was sitting in my living room, watching the 1986 playoffs between the Mets and the Astros. I had a group of friends over for the game -- just like I'd done my whole life. Paul Janszen, a friend of Gio's from the gym, heard me talking about the score and asked me a question about gambling on baseball. Without even thinking about the consequences, I said, "Betting on the playoffs makes the games more exciting to watch!"
My assumption is that Rose's denials of betting on baseball as a player are general statements about 1983 and earlier -- when he was just a player -- and there's some fuzziness about 1984 to 1986 when he was a player-manager.

Dowd is expecting lawyerly precision from Rose when he interprets Rose's "I did not bet on baseball as a player" to mean "as a player or player-manager," and this furthers Dowd's attempt to portray Rose as an unrepentant liar. (You're doing the same here in how you interpret his 2015 comment.) But Rose says in his book that bets were made earlier than the 1986 postseason, so he's making an implicit admission there to betting in 1986, at least.

Rose also says in the book he came clean to Commissioner Bud Selig in 2002, recounting the exchange with these quotes:

Rose: Sir, my daddy taught me two things in life -- how to play baseball and how to take responsibility for my actions. I learned the first one pretty well. The other, I've had some trouble with. Yes, sir, I did bet on baseball.

Selig: How often?

Rose: Four or five times a week. But I never bet against my own team and I never made bets from the clubhouse.

Selig: Why?

Rose: I didn't think I'd get caught. I just thought that I would win every game I managed. I was looking for some extra excitement.

ESPN's new document drop reports something that was already implicitly admitted in Rose's mea-culpa memoir: Bets were made in the 1986 season when he was a player-manager.

posted by rcade at 11:30 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

For the record, I was in the camp of letting him back into baseball until we found out in this latest report that he's lying about betting on games as a player.

The investigator for baseball in 1989, John Dowd, heard testimony from a bookie who said Rose bet on baseball when he played. Dowd's report concluded that Rose, as a player-manager and as a manager, bet on baseball from 1985 to 1987, including 52 times on the Reds to win. In his 2004 autobiography, My Prison Without Bars, Rose admitted betting on baseball when he was a player-manager.

All we have that's new here is corroborating documentation for something that was already known and factored into Rose's punishment.

Yours seems to be unfazed by anything except how long his lifetime ban has been.

Bingo. But I'm not claiming to be the voice of reason. I don't think banning him forever is unreasonable. I just think it's wrong.

Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker and two other players participated in fixing a Tigers-Indians game at the end of the 1919 season and Cobb arranged to bet $2,000 on it ($27,000 in today's money), according to columnist Jerome Holtzman in 1989. Evidence was presented to Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis eight years later, but he let the inquiry drop.

Fixing a game is worse than betting on your own team to win, I'd suggest.

Yet Cobb and Speaker are both in the Hall.

posted by rcade at 10:15 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

I don't need more indication. Twenty six years have passed. If Rose goes before Manfred and the commissioner is satisfied with how he talks about himself and his future plans, that's enough for me.

I find it hard to believe that anything Rose could say today would be accepted by Rose critics as a reason to trust him in the future.

In 2010, Rose was at a roast held in his honor attended by many of his Reds teammates that coincided with the 25th anniversary of his 4,192nd hit. Press accounts indicate that he took the stage, openly wept and acknowledged that he "disrespected baseball." He apologized to Tony Perez and other Reds and said, "I guarantee everyone in this room I will never disrespect you again. I love the fans, I love the game of baseball, and I love Cincinnati baseball."

So there's your public act of contrition and a heartfelt pledge for future sterling conduct. That was enough to convince you, right?

posted by rcade at 07:54 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

Then why is it a lifetime ban?

It isn't. If you don't believe me, ask Rob Manfred, who said in May he'd consider reinstatement.

Everybody knew from day one the lifetime ban would be open to reconsideration later, so to harp on the word "lifetime" the way you're doing is to cling to a fiction.

Manfred didn't pretend that "lifetime" has to mean "lifetime." Maybe you shouldn't either.

The moment they cut that sentence, it sends the message to everyone "Okay, we don't think it's REALLY important any more."

You're like the tough-on-crime Republican on a parole board who declares that if anyone is ever paroled, it means the crime they committed is now OK. No, that's not the message it sends to show mercy. The message is that sometimes enough is enough.

If Rose was reinstated today, any player considering betting on games would know that he could get a 26-year ban. That's hardly sending the message it is OK to bet on the game.

He is still trying to cover up the extent of his previous problems. He is still not truthful. His remorse has entirely been related to how much he gets caught.

I knew we'd eventually get around to this -- if Rose would just admit everything, we'd consider lifting the ban!

That's a Charlie Brown and the football scenario, and danging it out there when you're so adamant about continuing the ban is not serious. Be honest, Lucy. Any admission Rose made would be thrown into the pile of reasons to justify dragging this all the way to his grave.

... your example of Mark McGwire is again irrelevant because can't take PEDs and play anymore ...

No, he can't, but he has a lot of how-to advice he could offer on PED use to young players if he were, say, a coach. Ban him for life! Show no mercy! The sacred honor of baseball demands it!

posted by rcade at 05:57 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

As a general rule I think it's important that punishment be proportionate to the crime, proportionate to other punishments and tempered with mercy.

Why do you feel it is important that he be banned for 27 years instead of 26? 36 instead of 26? His entire lifespan plus one day? What interest hasn't already been served that will be served with more time?

posted by rcade at 03:34 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

I think baseball players and other personnel can manage to understand the seriousness of a rule without punishing Rose for another quarter century or two -- maybe he'll live past 100 and we'll have this debate again in 2040 when another document drops.

Since you think the idea of Rose's family seeking reinstatement after his death is something to snicker about, the chance we'll see eye to eye on this is close to zero.

posted by rcade at 01:47 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

Mark McGwire did not receive a lifetime ban from baseball.

I didn't say he did. I cited him as an example of someone who got hired despite a large portion of baseball considering him an ignominious figure.

Oh, I'm pretty sure that the Reds would welcome him home with open arms if MLB would allow them.

I agree. The Reds should be allowed to do that. It also would be smart for Manfred to reinstate him so that the Rose scandal can fade into history.

posted by rcade at 01:37 PM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

The only price he's paying currently is the people to whom he lied and cheated refuse to associate with him professionally ...

You make it sound as if everyone affiliated with MLB wouldn't associate with Rose. They don't have the choice, so we don't know what some organization in baseball would do if the commissioner allowed it. The sport is big. Mark McGwire got coaching gigs eight years after the PED scandal sent him into hiding.

posted by rcade at 11:43 AM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

Well, it does have the word "lifetime" in it.

So do life prison sentences. Yet ...

You're conflating this with crimes like embezzlement ...

Grum brought that comparison up, not me.

I'm all for Pete Rose being reinstated, and being put on the HOF ballot...the day after Shoeless Joe gets the same treatment, and not a day before...

Deal. Shoeless Joe today, Rose tomorrow.

posted by rcade at 09:31 AM on June 23

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

Why let him be part of the game at all?

Because 26 years is long enough for his punishment. I think it's way past long enough and deeply into ridiculous territory. Baseball is hardly so pristine that his jersey should be a hair shirt for a quarter century and counting.

Alex Rodriguez was suspended for a season for being a huge PED cheat. Is what Rose did 26 times as bad?

Marge Schott was banned in 1996 for racist, anti-Semitic, anti-gay, pro-Nazi and pro-Hitler statements and reinstated two years later. Is what Rose did 13 times as bad?

Has the definition of "permanent" changed?

Can you honestly tell me that when Pete Rose received a "lifetime" ban, you thought it would be for his entire life? If yes, then you can play the "permanent" card. If not, then like me you always knew permanent actually meant "a long-ass time but quite possibly not forever," so here we are.

Do you decide 20 years after he was fired to ignore the embezzlement and give him a gold watch for his retirement?

This punishment isn't one company, though. It covers a giant range of companies and activities that includes all teams in the majors, all affiliated teams in the minors and related activities such as being a sports agent.

Most embezzlers would have been convicted and released long before 26 years had passed and could be hired by any entity that wanted to hire him.

posted by rcade at 10:52 PM on June 22

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

I'm pretty sure that his reinstatement did hinge on him being truthful and showing contrition about what he had done.

I never saw a news story where Manfred mapped out the process under which he'd consider reinstatement. I've assumed that it's a situation where Manfred knows what he wants to do and the process will take shape accordingly.

It seems ridiculous to think that Rose would be able to come clean with something not yet acknowledged *and* still have any chance at reinstatement. The new admission would be treated as justification for continuing the ban because he didn't admit it earlier.

The bottom line for me is that he's 74. For me, every drop of emotion has been wrung out of this. Let the old fart be a part of the game, and if there are concerns some team might put him in a prominent position, limit what he's allowed to do.

posted by rcade at 07:58 PM on June 22

Pete Rose bet on MLB games while an active player in those games.

I never saw Rose's potential reinstatement hinging on him being someone who was wrongly punished.

It is about deciding that a quarter-century ban is sufficient punishment and a 74-year-old man should be able to return to the game before he's dead.

posted by rcade at 04:39 PM on June 22

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

The Women's World Cup confidence pool is caught up. Putting Australia down at 21 of 24 was not my best moment.

posted by rcade at 08:13 PM on June 21

Max Scherzer Has Perfect Game Through 8 2/3, But Hits Tabata

Props to Beaverboard for the headline I promptly stole.

posted by rcade at 08:44 PM on June 20

Max Scherzer Has Perfect Game Through 8 2/3, But Hits Tabata

Max Scherzer has a perfect game through 8.

posted by rcade at 06:14 PM on June 20

Brazil's World Cup Stadiums, One Year Later

I know, but if the corruption extends far enough to build a world-class stadium, why not go the extra step of getting a team funded that belongs in it? I can employ cognitive dissonance to ignore public stadium financing when there's a team that fills the house -- I'm a Cowboys fan.

posted by rcade at 06:12 PM on June 20

Brazil's World Cup Stadiums, One Year Later

How do you build a $900 million stadium in the fourth most populous city in Brazil -- the second most expensive soccer stadium in the world after Wembley -- and not have a local club worthy of filling it? The home club Brasilia FC being four levels down in Serie D is a waste.

posted by rcade at 01:18 PM on June 19

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Hey, man, nice shot.

posted by rcade at 03:34 PM on June 18

Golden State Warriors Win NBA Title

The Golden Ball is for an entire tournament, not just the final game/series. The Conn Smythe also covers the whole playoffs in hockey and has gone to a losing player five times (goalie Roger Crozier of the Detroit Red Wings in 1966, goalie Glenn Hall of the St. Louis Blues in 1968, right wing Reggie Leach of the Philadelphia Fliers in 1976, goalie Ron Hextall of the Fliers in 1987 and goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere of the Anaheim Ducks in 2003).

The Super Bowl has awarded the MVP to a losing player once (Dallas Cowboys linebacker Chuck Howley in 1971). The World Series also has done it once (New York Yankees second baseman Bobby Richardson in 1960). The NBA has done it once (Los Angeles Lakers guard Jerry West in 1969).

I don't mind it going to a losing player, but LeBron James only led the Cavaliers to two wins in the Finals and the last two losses were not competitive. That's not enough to merit MVP consideration.

posted by rcade at 02:31 PM on June 17

U.S. Beats Nigeria, Wins World Cup's "Group of Death"

The U.S. has a defense that can win it all, but I fear the lack of scoring punch. Nice to see Abby Wambach scoring on a fantastic goal that shows her killer instinct.

posted by rcade at 12:28 AM on June 17

Chicago Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup

Props to the Blackhawks, but I was disappointed in the drama level of this final. No overtimes and only two deciding goals in the final five minutes.

posted by rcade at 02:10 PM on June 16

St. Louis Cardinals Investigated by F.B.I. for Hacking Astros

If Cardinals front-office officials intentionally broke in to the Astros network to steal secrets, this would be one of the biggest scandals in baseball history. It should result in a lot of firings and a severe organizational penalty for the Cards.

The posting of some stolen information to an anonymous file site on the Internet suggests the people who did this were particularly malicious in intent.

People are going to jail for this.

posted by rcade at 12:51 PM on June 16

Chicago Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup

NHL Pick 'Em update (still in progress):

Longest game: 0 OTs (0 winners)

TV rating: 3.1 after game 6 (closest 3.2, jagsnumberone; 2.7, bender; 2.5, holden)

First scorer: Alex Killorn (0 winners)

Conn Smythe winner: Duncan Keith (3 winners)

Most goals: 2, Teuvo Teravainen, Antoine Vermette, Brandon Saad, Cedric Paquette, Killorn (0 winners)

Most assists: 4, Marian Hossa, Victor Hedman (0 winners)

Most points: 4, Hossa, Teravainen, Hedman, Ryan Callahan (0 winners)

Best plus/minus: 3, Duncan Keith (7 winners)

Most penalty minutes: 6, Braydon Coburn, Saad, Killorn (1 winner)

Starting goaltender with the best GAA: 1.69, Corey Crawford (5 winners)

posted by rcade at 11:25 PM on June 15

Lightning Can't Get Out Of Own Way, Blackhawks Go Up 3-2

NHL Pick 'Em update:

Longest game: 0 OTs (0 winners)

TV rating: 2.9 after game 2 (closest 2.7, bender; 3.2, jagsnumberone; 2.5, holden)

First scorer: Alex Killorn (0 winners)

Most goals: 2, Teuvo Teravainen, Antoine Vermette, Brandon Saad, Cedric Paquette, Killorn (0 winners)

Most assists: 4, Marian Hossa, Victor Hedman (0 winners)

Most points: 4, Hossa, Teravainen, Hedman, Ryan Callahan (0 winners)

Best plus/minus: 2, Hossa, Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith, David Rundblad, Callahan, Braydon Coburn, Ondrej Palat (9 winners)

Most penalty minutes: 6, Coburn, Saad, Killorn (1 winner)

Starting goaltender with the best GAA: 1.74, Andrei Vasilevskiy (0 winners)

posted by rcade at 02:07 PM on June 14

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

The schedule on FIFA's Women's World Cup site has a time feature that's confusing as hell. You can click a link that's either "Change to local time" or "Change to your time." But the first text you see is always "Change to local time," which makes me click it to see the game time for my locality.

Then I click it and am told "Change to your time." I thought I already did.

WHAT THE HELL, SEPP!

posted by rcade at 12:54 PM on June 12

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Watching Germany-Norway, I see some sections with quite a few empty seats. These are easy to spot because they're painted the same color, which makes me wonder something: Has any stadium ever used varying seat colors to make the venue look more full on TV?

posted by rcade at 04:33 PM on June 11

Corey Crawford Comes Up Big as Blackhawks Even Stanley Cup at 2

These numbers don't look like a Conn Smythe winner. Who would be the front-runner at this point assuming his team wins?

posted by rcade at 12:06 PM on June 11

Corey Crawford Comes Up Big as Blackhawks Even Stanley Cup at 2

NHL Pick 'Em update:

Longest game: 0 OTs (0 winners)

TV rating: 3.1 after game 2 (closest 3.2, jagsnumberone; 2.7, bender; 2.5, holden)

First scorer: Alex Killorn (0 winners)

Most goals: 2, Teuvo Teravainen, Brandon Saad, Cedric Paquette, Killorn (0 winners)

Most assists: 4, Marian Hossa, Victor Hedman (0 winners)

Most points: 4, Hossa, Hedman, Ryan Callahan (0 winners)

Best plus/minus: 2, Hossa, Duncan Keith, David Rundblad, Callahan, Braydon Coburn, Ondrej Palat (7 winners)

Most penalty minutes: 6, Coburn (1 winner)

Starting goaltender with the best GAA: 1.74, Andrei Vasilevskiy (0 winners)

Vasilevskiy starts a game and screws us all with that performance.

posted by rcade at 12:05 PM on June 11

U.S. Men Beat Germany After Beating The Netherlands

I like the idea that Klinsmann has the Americans playing without excessive fear of top sides like Germany. Winning a friendly there is one rung up the very tall ladder towards World Cup greatness.

posted by rcade at 11:31 AM on June 11

Corey Crawford Comes Up Big as Blackhawks Even Stanley Cup at 2

That Stamkos miss will haunt his dreams forever if the Bolts lose. As good as Crawford was at the end, he wasn't getting that one.

posted by rcade at 11:28 AM on June 11

LeBron James Puts Cavaliers Up 2-1 on Warriors

As good as the story is, I feel like the Warriors are one great stretch from restoring order to the universe. They'll hang 20 in a row on the Cavaliers to make a game a laugher and Stella will get her groove back.

posted by rcade at 11:40 AM on June 10

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Standings in the Women's World Cup confidence pool are updated through the first round of group games, which ended yesterday.

posted by rcade at 10:08 AM on June 10

NBC Sports to NHL: Hey Good Lookin', Shave Those Playoff Beards

We saw football players' faces more in the old days when facemasks were smaller and there were no visors. There also were no rules about removing helmets while on the field.

So the face theory works for that sport too. An old football helmet shows almost as much of the player's face as today's hockey headgear.

Football is such a juggernaut now the facelessness of players isn't going to make much of a dent. But if you're the No. 4 sport and soccer could make you No. 5, it makes sense to look for any advantage where you can find it.

posted by rcade at 10:55 PM on June 09

NBC Sports to NHL: Hey Good Lookin', Shave Those Playoff Beards

I like the playoff beards, but I can see why a top network executive would believe there's something about an Aqua Velva man. Sports where viewers see faces can make bank on the athletes' sex appeal. (I believe baseball offsets this with the spitting, unflattering pants and constant genital realignment.)

When Lazarus said, "What model citizens they are. (Hockey players) truly are one of a kind among professional athletes," I felt like he was treading into dangerous territory. Our players are white! They come from better homes because the equipment is so damn expensive! No one ever calls them urban!

posted by rcade at 08:16 PM on June 09

Football Coach Creates Rivalry Game Without Rival's Knowledge

It's too bad the game doesn't cross the Jornado del Muerto. That's a fantastic name for a rivalry game.

posted by rcade at 05:47 PM on June 09

NBC Sports to NHL: Hey Good Lookin', Shave Those Playoff Beards

NHL Pick 'Em update:

Longest game: 0 OTs (0 winners)

TV rating: 3.6 after game 2 (closest 3.2, jagsnumberone; 2.7, bender; 2.5, holden)

First scorer: Alex Killorn (0 winners)

Most goals: 2, Teuvo Teravainen, Cedric Paquette (0 winners)

Most assists: 4, Victor Hedman (0 winners)

Most points: 4, Hedman, Ryan Callahan (0 winners)

Best plus/minus: 3, Ondrej Palat (0 winners)

Most penalty minutes: 6, Braydon Coburn (1 winner)

Starting goaltender with the best GAA: 2.48, Ben Bishop (7 winners)

posted by rcade at 05:25 PM on June 09

U.S. Women Impress in World Cup Opening Win Over Australia

I think the last half was impressive. Megan Rapinoe was doing great things in tight space and her attack all the way from midfield for the final goal was flawless.

The first half was scary, since for the first 30 minutes Australia was clearly the better team and only Hope Solo kept the U.S. close. But aside from Abby Wambach's play I didn't leave the match with the concerns others have expressed here.

posted by rcade at 12:56 PM on June 09

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Reyes handled that situation so well he blocked out the shortstop from the ball and remained on base the entire time. It's like he practices that.

posted by rcade at 05:09 PM on June 08

Football Coach Creates Rivalry Game Without Rival's Knowledge

I used to talk about creating UNT/New Mexico State as a rivalry game when the schools were Big West opponents. The Mean Green lack a rival because of our frequent conference hops and the unfortunate trip down into the old Division I-AA. The team we've played the most is New Mexico State.

But I couldn't come up with a name. I needed a river that divided us.

posted by rcade at 05:04 PM on June 08

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

It seems a bit harsh to release Spikes before the authorities know whether he was driving his car at the time. But what the hell, the Cowboys could use another linebacker.

posted by rcade at 02:43 PM on June 08