Howard_T's profile

Name: Howard Titus
Location: Nashua, NH
ZIP: 03062
Gender: Old Alpha Male, hoping no young stud steals the herd.
Member since: April 08, 2006
Last visit: April 01, 2015

Howard_T has posted 36 links and 2843 comments to SportsFilter and 3 links and 265 comments to the Locker Room.

Sports Bio

Native Bostonian, with all attendant baggage still attached. Braves fan until they left for Milwaukee (yes, I'm that old), then it was the BoSox by default. Love all sports, but the favorites are baseball, hockey, football, and hoop, in that order. Used to umpire baseball at the Babe Ruth, Legion, and High School level. At my age, there are too many sports memories to really pick a favorite. Maybe it is Bill Russell's first game in Boston Garden. Another is the time when I was just back from Viet Nam and my dad took me to a Bruins game. This was in the glory days of Orr. Toronto was the opponent, they started 5 defensemen (really), and the fight started within the first minute or so.

Recent Links

Montreal Canadiens Jean Beliveau dead at 83: Montreal Canadiens have reported that Hockey Hall-of-Fame member and Montreal legend Jean Beliveau has passed away at age 83. Beliveau played 20 seasons for Canadiens, winning 10 Stanley Cup Championships, 5 of them coming when Beliveau wore the captain's C. He also served as a member of the team's management, earning 7 more cups along the way.

posted by Howard_T to hockey at 12:26 AM on December 03 - 2 comments

The Big Guys Get Their Way: The NCAA Board of Directors has given the 5 big conferences what amounts to near autonomy to set their own rules. It appears that football teams will now be ranked from Division 3 through FCS and FBS, with the largest 5 conferences in a new division called the Juggernaut Division.

posted by Howard_T to general at 11:26 PM on August 07 - 0 comments

Celtics Guard, Lakers Exec Bill Sharman Dies: Bill Sharman, high-scoring guard for the Boston Celtics, and later coach and executive with the Los Angeles Lakers has died at age 87. In the championship years with the Celtics, the mantra "Russell to Cousy to Sharman", describing the Boston fast break, was the equivalent of baseball's "Tinker to Evers to Chance".

posted by Howard_T to basketball at 03:15 PM on October 25 - 0 comments

The Bridgetown Senators?: This from Christopher Stuart Taylor of the Huffington Post tries to explain a possible bit of Canadian tax evasion on the part of Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk. The dodge involves setting up business relationships between Canada and Barbados. The businesses will then be taxed at the 2.5% Barbadian rate rather than the 30% Canadian rate. While the author leads with a Senators' connection, the actual investigation conducted by the CBC has nothing to do with the team. I'm sure Melnyk is clever enough to keep purely Canadian businesses out of the "Bajun" connection. Note: No matter which side (Canadian or Barbadian) is puling a fast one here, I'm on the bad side. My dad was from Nova Scotia, my mom from Barbados, and I still have family in both places.

posted by Howard_T to hockey at 01:32 PM on October 11 - 0 comments

Johnny Pesky, 1920-2012: Boston Red Sox legend Johnny Pesky died today at 92 years of age. He had been associated with the team in one capacity or another nearly continuously since 1942. Pesky, nee Paveskovich, is most remembered for the right-field foul pole that bears his name in Fenway Park.

posted by Howard_T to baseball at 05:12 PM on August 13 - 6 comments

Recent Comments

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

On another subject, there have been one or two April 1 items on Facebook and in various news articles. After posting about a pickup basketball game with Michael Jordan and a few others, Brady posted a Photoshop version of his face superimposed upon someone in a full body cast. The photo sported a supposed Michael Jordan autograph. Another is a report of the Boston Red Sox trading Shane Victorino and most of their prospects to Detroit for David Price. Boston Celtics' forward Kelly Olynyk fooled everyone in tonight's game vs Indiana. Despite running into a Shavlik Randolph elbow while doing some one-on-one before the game, and having an eye that looked like he had gone a round or two with the UFC Heavyweight champion, Olynyk went out and scored a team high 19 points. The eye took 4 stitches to put back together, but I guess that Olynyk, being Canadian, has something of a hockey player mentality.

The biggest April Fool story of the day is that despite a misspent youth, and a highly questionable adult life, yours truly made it to his 74th birthday on April 1 without spending any significant time being incarcerated. We haven't quite reached the doddering stage yet. I'm signed on to help out umpiring sub-varsity high school and middle school baseball this spring. We'll see if the season will ever start, since many of the fields still have snow on them. Some of the more fortunate schools are able to use indoor facilities, but most, especially the smaller ones up north, will not be on the field for quite a while yet. Perhaps I'm fooling myself by thinking that I can keep up with the kids, but I'm feeling good, so why not?

posted by Howard_T at 12:45 AM on April 02

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

I would suggest unbelievably fortunate. A few inches lower and they are trying to reattach his head. Unlucky to the extent that the contact was below the visor. Very lucky that the rear of the skate blade did not poke directly into the eye.

My wife had foot surgery a week ago and had the bandages removed yesterday. The stitches on her right foot look a lot like those on Miller's face. Come to think of it, it looks a bit like one of Gerry Cheevers' old masks.

posted by Howard_T at 12:23 AM on April 02

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

It's an idiotic rule. On occasion I worked on a flight line testing one or another aircraft system. Often we were working with engines turning and no access to any communication with the pilot in the cockpit. We usually had to relay numbers for switch settings. The way we communicated single digit numbers from 6 - 9 was to hold up 5 fingers on one hand, place the other hand in front with the first knuckles even with the heel of the rear hand, and hold up the required number of fingers to add to the number required. It was a system that was well understood by all. The other part of this was always to flash the digits one at a time. For example, the number 17 would be flashed by first holding up a single finger and then holding up the 5 and 2 digits using both hands as described above. Do you think that NCAA referees and scorekeepers might be able to figure out such a system?

posted by Howard_T at 11:07 PM on March 31

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

Early favorite for sportswriter of the year.

The guy gets paid for crap like this?

posted by Howard_T at 09:35 PM on March 30

The Hidden Value of a Knuckleballer

I have heard this idea before, and there seems to be merit in it. The reverse might be true as well. When Boston used Tim Wakefield as a closer, coming in behind a pitcher with a "conventional" fast ball, batters seemed to have a great deal of difficulty slowing themselves down to the knuckleball. The same phenomenon applies to a driver who, after 2 hours of 70 mph interstate driving, slows to 50 on an off ramp. It seems like you are crawling.

posted by Howard_T at 03:20 PM on March 25

Obama Proposal Could End Taxpayer-Subsidized Pro Sports Stadiums

For what it's worth in relation to the arguments over public funding of sports venues, I offer the following. The emotional attachment to a team in your city can be quite strong, even if you never go to one of their games. Walk around anywhere in New England and look at the number of Patriots, Bruins, Red Sox, and Celtics hats, shirts, and jackets. I would bet that fewer than 25% of those who sport the gear have been to a game of that team in the past season, or perhaps even the past 5 seasons.

I have just renewed my Boston Celtics season tickets. It's something of a luxury, although the cost for the 2 seats is not a budget buster for me. I have tried to make it to at least one Patriots game per season, but did not this year. I don't think I will try for the coming season, either. The seats are expensive, getting to and from the games from southern NH is a real pain, and the seats that are usually available are located "somewhere in the Town of Foxborough". While I am a baseball and hockey fan, I will not go to Fenway Park, and I probably won't go to TD Garden for a Bruins game. I can get my baseball fix with a collegiate level wooden bat game at the local park. College hockey is readily available, with 3 teams within less than an hour's drive and 4 more in Boston.

So why did I choose the Celtics for season tickets rather than one of the other teams? First of all, I go back to the 1952-53 season with the team. I lived in the town of Winthrop, MA, which by public transportation was less than 30 minutes away (if connections were good). The cost for a game was affordable for a kid of 11 or 12 who was in the process of getting filthy rich by delivering newspapers. The best bet was to get my dad interested in the team and talk him into going to a game. The Celtics became the only championship winning team in Boston, and continued a winning tradition throughout the 1960s and well into the 1970s. I was absent from the area for most of those years, but I still followed the team.

I know I will not attend all 43 of the games in the coming season (ticket plan includes 2 exhibition games), so why renew? I will use a number of the tickets as prizes for fund raisers at my church or for the PTO at the school where my wife works. I will sell a few to a couple of people I know who want to go to the occasional game but don't want the hassle of buying tickets through the team and having to figure out whether the seats are any good. Still, I'll eat a few, but I really don't worry about it. In short, while the money I spend could be used for something else, it isn't that I'm taking food out of my wife's mouth. I'm not wealthy, but I am certainly comfortable. Thus, I can afford a few luxuries, and the Celtics are one of them.

posted by Howard_T at 11:47 PM on March 20

Formula E Racing Comes to U.S.

The changing cars halfway through just proves that electric cars will never work unless you have a regular car also.

Drive your local commutes everyday but if you want to take a trip forget it.

That's the kind of thing that buggy owners said about gas-powered "automobiles" over 100 years ago. If you really think this is the be-all-end-all of battery tech, then you're probably going to be very surprised in the (near) future.

Electric vehicles at this point in their development are not quite there as a replacement for the internal combustion engine (ICE). Range and refueling (charging) times do not compare favorably. The hybrid vehicle offers the best compromise between fully electric and fully ICE. Admittedly, Tesla has come close to a practical fully electric vehicle, but is not quite there yet. Battery technology has been in development for over a century, but until the last quarter century or so there was little progress. When newer materials for battery production were introduced, batteries got a lot better. The lithium-ion (LIon) device is now a standard, but other than incremental improvements to the LIon battery, nothing of great importance seems to be on the horizon.

Having said that, the technology that might make all-electric vehicles not just practical but preferable is in a stage of development that might be ready to break out. I am speaking of higher-temperature super conducting materials. These materials offer low resistance paths for the conduction of electricity when temperatures are held higher than those usually associated with super-conduction, that is temperatures of liquid nitrogen or lower. Private industries are working with carbon fiber, weaving it into transmission cables. The technology has great importance for the transmission of electricity over distance, and if used for the windings of electric motors, it could improve their efficiency as well.

In short, batteries are not the wave of the future, but there are other things that might make the present state of the art battery suitable to be the fuel source for all-electric vehicles.

posted by Howard_T at 11:55 PM on March 16

"Why not go for 70?"

Forgive me if someone has cited this previously, but when a statue of Dominique Wilkins was recently unveiled in Atlanta, Larry Bird's comment was, "I'm sure it does not show him in a defensive stance." Some things never change.

posted by Howard_T at 05:47 PM on March 14

The NFL free-agency period begins with a slew of major moves

I assumed letting Browner shop around was because they were resigning Revis . . .

Now Browner has gone to New Orleans for 3 years at $18 million. There's some guaranteed money there too, but I can't recall what it was. Supposedly the Saints wanted him so they could better cope with some of the tall receivers in the NFC South.

posted by Howard_T at 01:37 AM on March 13

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

I was unaware of cities and states singling out certain occupations for taxation while not charging others the same tax. I am not a lawyer, but what I do know from history is that laws that are unequally applied usually do not stand review by higher courts. I would bet that Hillenmeyer and Saturday have a decent chance of prevailing in the courts.

One sneaky thing to do might be to have one's agent research the tax laws of each NHL city and state. If such laws are on the books, have the agent get one's contract restructured so that games in those cities or states are paid at a very low rate, and the difference is made up in other games. If such contracts are allowed by the NFL, it could raise a bit of nasty with taxes.

posted by Howard_T at 09:57 PM on March 10

Hassan Whiteside's Cinderella season

Whiteside's latest adventure has cost him a game and some money. His hit on Olynyk was unnecessary, unthinking, and basically stupid. Here's a link to the Boston Globe article with a video. Look at where Whiteside's elbows are when he shoves Olynyk. It's nearly a head shot, and the NHL might have given him 5 games.

I nearly lost my breakfast when I read of Dwayne Wade's comments. Evidently Whiteside did not learn enough from Wade about how to get away with cheap shots, and Wade has called him out. Wade is nothing but hypocritical when he talks about others. In the 4th quarter, as Boston was beginning to pull away, Wade put a shot on Isaiah Thomas that put Thomas to the floor. Thomas had to leave the game, he is badly bruised on the back and arm, and will have tests to determine if there is any further damage. Add this to Wade's take down of Rondo a few years ago that put Rondo out for the duration of the 2011 Eastern Conference Semifinals and his shove of Darren Collison in the 2012 post season. In short, Wade has a history of cheap shots that have not always been adequately dealt with by the NBA.

posted by Howard_T at 09:42 PM on March 10

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

I'm not sure Mr. Packard's statement that players from a visiting team are subject to state income taxes is universally correct. I worked for a company in New Hampshire, which has no personal income tax. I spent a lot of time working for my employer in states that had personal income taxes. As long as my employment was considered as temporary with a fixed time limit, and I maintained my home of record in New Hampshire, I was generally exempt from paying any tax to the other state. Our accountants kept track of where I was working and the applicable laws. They would warn me were I remaining too long in one place, and they would then start withholding income tax as applicable. Suffice it to say, they never had to withhold any state income tax from me. Each state law is different, so Mr. Packard might well be correct for certain states, but what he has written does not apply everywhere.

My son is now employed as a state tax researcher, so I will ask him what he knows of the subject. His problem is that although he is a New Hampshire resident his employer is in Massachusetts. Thus he gets to pay his dues to the "Peoples' Republic".

posted by Howard_T at 03:06 PM on March 10

Baseball's fight with fatigue

I read someplace that coffee was the substitute of choice when the amphetamines disappeared from the dugout. Could this explain why a certain doughnut chain advertises on so many sporting events. "America runs on Dunkin".

posted by Howard_T at 01:39 PM on March 07

Curt Schilling Declares War on Twitter Trolls Abusing His Daughter

The jerks who decided to spew the garbage on Schilling's daughter very likely presumed that their anonymity would protect them. Surprise, surprise, it turns out that Mr. Schilling is tech savvy enough that he was able to expose them for what they are. The nearest thing I can come up with is to have a couple of high school yoyos talking stink about your daughter while you are waiting around the corner of the hall for a teacher's conference. I'm fully in favor of Schilling's actions on this.

Perhaps the standard on the internet ought to be "would you dare to say these things to someone's face?" If by doing so you would be taking a serious risk of having your facial features permanently rearranged, it might be a good idea not to say what you are thinking.

Schilling included a bunch of links in his blog. I did not follow any of them, but the urls all led to stories about suicides that were due in some part to harassment on the internet. Having your daughter ripped on twitter, but being strong enough to survive is one thing. Having your teen age son or daughter take his or her own life because of the harassment is quite another. I really don't think Schilling was strong enough in his reaction.

posted by Howard_T at 11:12 PM on March 02

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

I always loved his first name, Orestes. Nobody with a name inspired by Greek mythology could be all bad, and this Red Sox fan enjoyed watching him on TV whenever the White and Red varieties of hose paired up. He was an exciting and colorful personality. RIP.

posted by Howard_T at 05:04 PM on March 01