Recent Comments by Bryant

Ring it up! Celtics crush Lakers for 17th title

Yay hindsight! Oh, hey, I remember that comment thread. Pardon the woofing, but I said: But really. If the three stay healthy for a season, we're talking Kevin Garnett with more help than he's ever had in his life before. I'm not saying it guarantees anything; that'd be silly. It's also kind of silly to say that they won't make the EC finals. And I called Rondo out as a critical element of the team! Then again, I was concerned about their defense, so maybe I'm an idiot after all.

posted by Bryant at 12:56 PM on June 18

An Instant Classic

Yeah; and the ownership groups talk to each other and reinforce that ethos. For a while the Krafts and the Red Sox guys got a little bit snippy over who was getting the most inches in the newspaper, but everyone got over that and now we have the Red Sox moving start times in order to accomodate the Celtics games.

posted by Bryant at 12:24 AM on June 14

You got Rondo'd.

Read what I said, man. I didn't say he was better than Paul or Williams; I said he was more of a pure point guard. I said he /might/ be a perennial All-Star, and let me put the emphasis on "possible" there. But I do think he's a great point guard for this team, and I think he's easily going to be the third best point guard of his generation, with those two guys clearly ahead of him. He's two games away from being the third point guard ever to win a Finals before his third season, and the first two were Magic Johnson and Tony Parker. It's pretty darned good company to be in, and when the guy throws out 16 assists I don't think you can say he's just along for the ride.

posted by Bryant at 12:15 AM on June 09

You got Rondo'd.

I think he's a highly promising second year point guard. I get a little bit nervous when I remember that he has to play well in order for the Celtics to win a championship, but he's capable of doing it. A lot depends on whether or not he can do it consistently. He's a good defender. He's a superb rebounder for a guard; Bob Ryan says he's one of the best 6'1" rebounders in the league, and I tend to agree. He makes dumb decisions sometimes. He can penetrate and shoot -- he has a nice little teardrop floater that goes in more often than you think it's gonna. He spent all summer working on his jump shot, and it improved substantially. I expect he's going to do the same again this summer. Next year, opponents won't be able to cheat off him when he's 18' from the basket, and he'll nail breakaway jumpshots. Last year, he shot .418 from the floor. This year, it was .492. Note that he's slipped in the playoffs -- again, he's a second year guy, and he needs seasoning. He's a pure point guard, moreso than either Chris Paul or Deron Williams. He's gonna be an All Star someday, quite possibly a perennial one. His ceiling... somewhere between DJ and Cousy. Closer to DJ. Yeah, really. He might or might not reach that ceiling. I'm very happy he's a Celtic.

posted by Bryant at 10:30 AM on June 07

Lester throws majors' first no-hitter of season as Red Sox rock Royals

Martinez took a no-hitter into the ninth with Varitek catching on August 29th, 2000, and made the same mistake Schilling did. (Pedro's had lousy luck with no hitters; he's taken two into the ninth and took a perfect game into the tenth.) So Varitek's caught four no-hitters, one abbreviated five inning no-hitter, and been within sniffing distance of another two. Quite the catcher.

posted by Bryant at 09:43 AM on May 20

Page 2's Bill Simmons channels Doc Rivers

I'd just as soon they beat the Cavs. We have a three year window for a title with the current team; I don't expect them to win it this year, but it's important to get Rondo, Perkins, Powe, and Davis as many playoff games as possible. In about that order. Rondo's almost never the best player on the court, but he is almost always the most important player on the court, because the three stars aren't really great at directing the flow of the game. Fortunately we happen to have the best point guard Tubby Smith ever taught at hand, so there's a decent chance he'll mature into a Tony Parker before the three amigos age out. Playoff experience is gonna help there, no matter how painful it is to watch.

posted by Bryant at 10:46 AM on May 15

The Best Homerun Story Ever

ESPN has video. Nice little package, including the initial hit and the walk around the bases.

posted by Bryant at 04:28 PM on May 06

Pau Gasol headed to the Lakers.

Wow. Nice of The Logo to help out the Lakers like that. It is almost as he still works for them but just in the Memphis office. Chris Wallace is the Memphis GM this year; he hurt the Celtics while he was their GM, and now he's hurting Memphis.

posted by Bryant at 05:51 PM on February 01

Last minute rally moves Patriots to 12-0

Rex Ryan, the defensive coordinator, called the timeout. So the defense got screwed by their own coach. I'm sure it stung. I think that if the officials on the field had called the TD pass an incomplete, the booth would have upheld it. It was just a close, close play. On the other hand, if the booth had overturned it, then it would have been second and 4 with plenty of time, and I think the Patriots most probably wind up getting the touchdown anyhow.

posted by Bryant at 11:04 AM on December 04

New England By the Numbers

CBS says the crowd noise was their audio glitch.

posted by Bryant at 01:54 PM on November 05

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

In a league that features over 400 players a season, ranking in or around the top 50 isn't bad, especially if you're not a PG. Even better if you're on a team without any other serious scoring threats. So, yeah, not too bad.

posted by Bryant at 04:49 PM on August 01

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

Who do they have to pass the ball? They seem to have lots of shooters and a poor defense. I admit to not being much of an expert, but I thought that the guys they have want the ball fed to them. The trio was #49, #50, and #51 in the entire NBA in assists per game last season. (Allen, then Pierce, then Garnett.) This is not superb, but then again it's not a sign of a trio of players who're unwilling and unable to pass. Rajon Rondo is the current choice to start at PG. He's untried. He looked pretty good in the last 30 or so games last year; his big weakness is that he can't shoot the jumper. He is pretty effective inside, though. 5.8 assists, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.4 steals in 25 starts. 20-30 games does not a career make, however. Celtics fans will be significantly more comfortable if and when Danny signs a competent veteran PG as backup. Brevin Knight is one obvious choice.

posted by Bryant at 03:02 PM on August 01

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

If I were a Celtics fan, I'd be glad the team made a bold move to escape mediocrity. Garnett, Allen and Pierce put them back on the map in an East that's susceptible to title runs driven by superstars, as Wade and Shaq did in Miami two years ago and LeBron did last year. I think they've got a legit shot at a top four finish in the East, though I wonder how much defense they can muster in the postseason. Me too. Garnett's a capable defender, so I feel comfortable there. Pierce played good defense earlier in his career but has regressed a fair bit. Sometimes I want to blame that on Doc Rivers. We'll see. It's a definite potential weakness.

posted by Bryant at 12:20 PM on August 01

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

For those who are counting the wins in the coming season, just remember that you are one injury away from disaster. We had that problem last year, as evidenced by the disaster that occurred when Pierce went down.

posted by Bryant at 03:04 PM on July 31

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

Nah, they still own his contract.

posted by Bryant at 07:27 AM on July 31

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

They did lose 58 games last season, but then again, they just upgraded a bit. Injuries is the big question. But really. If the three stay healthy for a season, we're talking Kevin Garnett with more help than he's ever had in his life before. I'm not saying it guarantees anything; that'd be silly. It's also kind of silly to say that they won't make the EC finals.

posted by Bryant at 08:45 PM on July 30

Kevin Garnett Traded to Celtics

Oh, it's fairly respectable from the Celtics perspective. Ainge absolutely threw away the future. This is all about the next three years. But the Celtics are immediately solid favorites to make the EC finals at the very least, and probably see the Finals once. If Garnett was discontent, he wouldn't be agreeing to the trade. And make no mistake; he is agreeing. If he disliked the trade, he wouldn't sign the extension, and the trade won't happen if he doesn't. As long as Rondo isn't part of the trade, you have someone to start at point guard. The Celts will need a backup PG, but Brevin Knight's probably available for the midlevel. Center: Perkins and Davis. Sixth man: Tony Allen, whatever he can bring to the table at this point post-injury. I'm not sure how you can say the Celtics won't make the EC finals, really. Who's going to stop them? Cleveland, with one incredible player and a bunch of eh? (Z's a year older, as are his ankles.) Miami? I would have preferred to see Pierce traded pre-draft for picks and possible new stars, so that the team could build around Jefferson and young guys, but Ainge isn't very good at that. Once the trade for Allen was made, this was about the only thing that could justify it. Remember: the team that walks away from a trade with the best player wins. Garnett is an all-time great. Jefferson has potential, but it would be very surprising if he turned out to be as good as Garnett. Jefferson will certainly be better five years from now, when Garnett's well past his prime, but this trade is all about the next three years.

posted by Bryant at 05:35 PM on July 30

Paul Shirley blogs

Prolly not -- it's been fixed already.

posted by Bryant at 05:29 PM on March 26

Paul Shirley blogs

Yeah, half the NBA is gonna hate him before he's done. On the other hand, that probably won't get in the way of his inevitable career as an insurance/car salesman once the ten day contracts stop coming.

posted by Bryant at 12:03 PM on March 25

Game on!

Actually, the announcers did call out that Dillon block -- a little rushed, but they got it. This does not mean I liked 'em, though -- they were pretty sloppy about replays, particularly on penalty calls.

posted by Bryant at 10:46 AM on February 07

Clemens is the highest paid pitcher in baseball history

I think it's fair to take the two years total he's going to be playing for the Astros as an aggregate, too. I mean, last year he signed for significantly under market value. The total salary will be, what, something around 23 million? I think 11.5 million a year is fair value for a pitcher of that caliber.

posted by Bryant at 08:09 AM on January 22

It's MY ball, dammit!

Nooooo, tieguy! I'm a UK fan, thanks to an ex-girlfriend. I'd let Special M play every day and trade Millar, myself. Theo was mentioning the other day on 'EEI that he thought the "gang of idiots" thing went a bit too far last year -- and if he's of that mind, well, trading Millar is the right thing to do. Nothing happens there till Delgado lands, though.

posted by Bryant at 11:09 PM on January 08

It's MY ball, dammit!

Lotta good stuff on this (well, or anyhow Minky's side of the story) at Boston Dirt Dogs. Including links to a transcript of Minky's remarks on EEI. No, I cannot type Mienkieitz... crap.

posted by Bryant at 08:54 PM on January 07

World Series Game 4

Well, I love that dirty water. Ah! Boston! You're my home! God, that was great.

posted by Bryant at 11:52 PM on October 27

World Series Game 3

Yeah, that was two almost-homers there; made me a tad nervous. "I could be anybody's daddy any day." Heh. You tell 'em, Pedro.

posted by Bryant at 10:49 PM on October 26

World Series Game 3

Shucks.

posted by Bryant at 10:43 PM on October 26

World Series Game 3

Timlin does the things he does, and it's three outs to go. I agree with JG -- this is surreal. In a good way.

posted by Bryant at 10:28 PM on October 26

World Series Game 3

Hey, Pedro? Just in case, just on the off-chance you don't come back next year -- Thanks for absolutely everything. It's been a blast watching you pitch.

posted by Bryant at 10:13 PM on October 26

World Series Game 3

Lotta people making contact against Suppan. I have to feel pretty good about that.

posted by Bryant at 08:18 PM on October 26

Is anyone else sick of Curt Schilling?

All I'm saying is that when you reach a point that you're rooting for Boston to win "another World Series," you'll find yourself missing some of the mystique that was created by eight decades of inexplicable futility. See, this is a regrettable misunderstanding of Red Sox Nation. A common one, but a misunderstanding nonetheless. We do not define ourselves by our losses; we are defined by others by those losses. We don't care if the mystique is gone. We don't need the mystique. We are sick and tired of people talking about the mystique. What we need, or at least what we want, is a quality baseball team. The passion you see from us is not generated by failure, it's generated by the desire for success. We want to see our team do well. We define ourselves by that desire. It's a simple thing.

posted by Bryant at 02:43 PM on October 25

Is anyone else sick of Curt Schilling?

I'm not sure when losing five miles an hour off your fastball became "insignificant."

posted by Bryant at 07:41 AM on October 25

World Series, Game Two

2-0! And another four errors. Wonder what the record is for errors in a World Series? Ah, looks like it's 34, way back in 1909. "Love that dirty water, ahhh, Boston! You're my home."

posted by Bryant at 10:49 PM on October 24

World Series, Game Two

Ah, man, he's over-using Foulkie.

posted by Bryant at 10:28 PM on October 24

World Series, Game Two

Schilling may miss the rest of the Series; the surgery apparently hurt a lot more the second time. Pfoo. I can't say I'm surprised, though.

posted by Bryant at 10:12 PM on October 24

World Series, Game Two

Well, look at Embree, striking everybody out! The 70s Show guys are into that, huh? How depressing.

posted by Bryant at 10:03 PM on October 24

World Series, Game Two

Francona's got to be feeling good now. Get another inning out of Schilling, and you can go Embree/Timlin to finish it up and rest Foulke a bit, or even use Leskanic if you need to. All assuming that the Red Sox don't give it up. Which they so easily could.

posted by Bryant at 09:45 PM on October 24

World Series, Game Two

I'd bet on Schill starting the seventh, but he'll be on a tight leash.

posted by Bryant at 09:36 PM on October 24

World Series, Game Two

I don't like Schilling's control. I like his velocity, but I don't like his control.

posted by Bryant at 08:28 PM on October 24

Get Your Series On!

If we can't beat Tim Fricking Wakefield on a night when he struggles and the Red Sox give us four extra outs, I don't think we have much of a chance against Schilling and Pedro. That's sort of what I've been thinking from the opposite side, yeah. Of course, that changes a lot if Schilling's ankle gives way. I would pay serious money to be a fly on the wall while Varitek and Schilling discuss bunt strategies today.

posted by Bryant at 10:30 AM on October 24

This is it

Yes. Ortiz has played plenty of first base. Where "plenty" is defined as "not as much as I'd like, damn it, and do they replace him with Minky in late innings?"

posted by Bryant at 01:04 PM on October 22

This is it

Lowe was pitching on two days rest; you'd be insane to give him more innings. I probably would have felt better about putting in Mendoza, but then again, Mendoza might not have recovered and put out the last two batters.

posted by Bryant at 04:27 PM on October 21

This is it

I think the Sox rotation should be OK. According to Jerry Remy, the Red Sox planned on having Pedro pitch today for one inning, representing his side session. So: Pedro goes in game one. Schilling goes in game two, if he can; otherwise it's Lowe. Then Arroyo, then Wakefield. If Schilling misses game two you slot him in wherever you can.

posted by Bryant at 07:29 AM on October 21

This is it

What's the commercial? I swapped over to NESN.

posted by Bryant at 11:35 PM on October 20

This is it

Yeah, hey -- thanks to the Yankees fans among us for being completely classy. You guys rock.

posted by Bryant at 11:23 PM on October 20

This is it

THE BOSTON RED SOX HAVE WON THE PENNANT!

posted by Bryant at 11:11 PM on October 20

This is it

Nah, it's more that I can't breathe at the moment.

posted by Bryant at 11:02 PM on October 20

This is it

Hey, betcha five bucks Francona does something REALLY DISTURBING in the ninth inning... And it works out.

posted by Bryant at 10:39 PM on October 20

This is it

Aw, shucks. Gordon doesn't have much left in that tank of his... No. No, I can't do that; I love Tom Gordon more than I thought I was capable of loving anyone who used to play for the Sox and now plays for the Yankees. So I won't mock him. But really, he should have signed with a team that wouldn't misuse him.

posted by Bryant at 10:27 PM on October 20

This is it

On the other hand, he's throwing 97 MPH fastballs, and he hasn't done that for years. So I think I'm just kind of nervously weirded out.

posted by Bryant at 10:21 PM on October 20

This is it

Wakefield pitched a lot and you want him to be able to start if you make the World Series. The right move here is probably either Mendoza or Leskanic. Timlin and Embree get you through the rest of it. Pedro is available in case of serious trouble.

posted by Bryant at 10:07 PM on October 20

This is it

Lowe pitched two days ago, and it would he hugely impolite to make him blow out his arm. I'm OK with bringing Lowe out. Just I dunno about putting Pedro in.

posted by Bryant at 10:03 PM on October 20

This is it

I do not like putting Pedro in. If that's what Francona has in mind. Doesn't make sense with this kind of lead.

posted by Bryant at 09:58 PM on October 20

This is it

Holy crap, Lowe looks like he's going to personally run up to home plate and tear out spleens if anyone gets a hit.

posted by Bryant at 09:37 PM on October 20

This is it

Yankee Stadium: silent, except for the Red Sox fans chanting "MVP!" for David Ortiz. But there are six innings left, which is an awfully long time.

posted by Bryant at 09:10 PM on October 20

This is it

Man, here's what I hate about Fox. Mueller makes a heck of a play and they can't be bothered to do a replay, because they might lose a commercial because of it. Bastards.

posted by Bryant at 08:58 PM on October 20

This is it

Doesn't mean a damned thing, Flunked. Means the pitching was bad and the Yankees had good bats.

posted by Bryant at 08:51 PM on October 20

This is it

That may not have been the best pitching decision ever.

posted by Bryant at 08:22 PM on October 20

Yanks v. Sox Game 6.

Cause in a baseball game, one isn't often acting in ways that contradict one's faith. Rap videos are not known for their religiousity.

posted by Bryant at 10:26 AM on October 20

Yanks v. Sox Game 6.

I got no problems with Schill's comments about God, and I'm a die-hard atheist. He's never been one of those guys who invokes Jesus after every game. He was pretty quiet about it even tonight -- he didn't pray for a win, he just wanted the strength to compete. I'm OK with that.

posted by Bryant at 09:50 AM on October 20

Yanks v. Sox Game 6.

He talked about it during the post-game interview, dusted. I can't find a story but it'll be all over the news tomorrow. Boston Dirt Dogs has it.

posted by Bryant at 12:29 AM on October 20