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Hockey's a very funny sport. It always seems like when a team has opportunity after opportunity to put a game away like the Red Wings did yesterday (all the powerplays and two 5-on-3s, and the powerplay in OT), and that team fails to cash in on any of those opportunities, the "hockey gods" always rise up and make something bad happen like Lilja's turnover for the game winner for Anaheim.
posted by Greenmiles at 07:30 PM on May 21
Let us put Michigan State's miraculous victory into perspective. As has been said already it was against a very bad team. And even though we have to give Michigan State a lot of credit for making it happen, we also must give Northwestern as much credit for blowing a 35-point lead. I'm not saying that to be mean. It's always been my opinion that any team that blows a huge lead did as much to lose the game as the opposing team did to win it. Heck, we Spartan fans only have to look back a few weeks to know how true that is. Furthermore, it was only one win. Senior center Kyle Cook was quoted after the game as saying, "We just saved our season." I couldn't help but shake my head when I read that. The truth is the Spartans haven't saved anything yet. It was one game. It was an exciting game, yes. It was an important win in the sense that it stopped a losing streak and keeps the possibility of a bowl game alive. But it was only one win. There are four games left to play. And Kyle, we won't know whether you've "saved" your season or prolonged your (and your fans') suffering until those four games have been played. You know, it's attitudes like that that are at the root of Michigan State's football woes. They win one big game (and I'm using the term 'big' very loosely in this case) and they think they've done something. It's that kind of attitude that causes Michigan State to do something like beat Michigan one week and then lose to Indiana at home the very next week. Michigan State's problems are more with their collective heads than with their collective talent. It's true they don't have the depth of talent that other programs have, but they do have talent. Their problem is that you never know what Michigan State team is going to show up on any given Saturday. It could be the team that is actually motivated to play as hard as possible to win. Or it could be the team who thinks all they have to do is roll their helmets out onto the field and they'll win. Or it could be the team that's so wrapped up in last week's huge loss that they forget there are still games left to win. You get the idea. And for all those who think it's John L. Smith's fault, remember, Michigan State has been doing this for 20 years. They were doing it when George Perles was here. They were doing it when Nick Saban and Bobby Williams were here. The thing is, it's something that somehow has been ingrained into this program. Even though the players and coaches change, the same problem remains. So for all those who say Smith is to blame and he's got to go -- he's really not. Michigan State was like this when he signed on the dotted line. The only thing he's really guilty of is not being able to come up with a solution. People are saying he looks clueless. I claim those looks on his face are more like, "I've tried everything I know how to do to turn this program around and nothing has worked. What the heck should I do now?" Don't get me wrong. I'm not actually defending Smith. My point is this: if Ron Mason fires Smith, who does he hire? Who is the magician who will be able to come to East Lansing and actually turn this program around? I tell you what. I don't know. Lots of people around here are high on getting Steve Mariucci. As fun as that sounds I don't think that's the answer. He's always been known as a player's coach -- a nice guy. I think a guy like that would have little success reversing the trend here. Truth be told the guy who came the closest to a turnaround was Nick Saban. And he was definitely not a player's coach. He was on his teams like white on rice for five years to play harder and be tougher and all that. And just when results began to show he left. Quite frankly I think if Mason decides to fire Smith he needs to find a replacement who's just like Tom Izzo. Izzo is just like Saban with respect to how he treats his team. He's very hard on them. The difference between Saban and Izzo is that Saban was always in it for himself. Everything he did he did for what it would get him. Izzo on the other hand is every bit as hard on his players, but he's hard on them for what it can get for his players rather than himself. Anyway, Mason needs to find a guy like that and give him at least five years, maybe longer, to wrench Michigan State into another direction.
posted by Greenmiles at 03:08 PM on October 23
Believe me I don't condone cheating. And if Kenny Rogers was, that's too bad. But let's face it, he had whatever substance it was on his hand for one inning. He gave up one hit in that inning. And for seven more innings without any substance on his hand, he gave up exactly one more hit. Quite frankly I think it would have been much more damning if the Cardinals would have all of a sudden started hitting the white off the ball. Oh well, if the Tigers end up winning the World Series, Cardinals fans have their excuse as to why they lost four games to the Tigers: Kenny Rogers had a foreign substance on his hand for one inning of only one of those losses.
posted by Greenmiles at 02:05 PM on October 23
Wow! Wow! All I can say is, "wow!"
posted by Greenmiles at 01:57 PM on October 18
You know what's funny? Not five seconds after I heard Steve Lyons' comments during last night's game I said out loud, "Well, he's fired." And that's not because I was offended by his comments. I've simply been around long enough to know that in this day and age when you say something like that, you're gonna be fired. I did think Lyons crossed a line last night. I can easily see how people of hispanic origins would be offended by what he said.
posted by Greenmiles at 09:50 PM on October 14
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