FanDuel - WFBC

May 01, 2012

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle:

A place to discuss the sports stories that aren't making news, share links that aren't quite front-page material, and diagram plays on your hand. Remember to count to five Mississippi before commenting in anger.

posted by huddle to general at 06:00 AM - 21 comments

An update to a previous Sportsfilter thread about Bald Vinny retiring from being a bleacher creature.

I saw that Yankee GM Brian Cashman recently sat with Bald Vinny during a game, so I checked out his website and found out Bald Vinny returned because he couldn't find a job.

In fact, it's taken me three nights just to get this far. The thing is, I really don't think there is anything that has to be "announced". Yes, I'll be back in the bleachers for another season. But it's not because I've improved my situation at all from my last blog. In fact, I'm essentially coming back because I couldn't find another job.

posted by justgary at 10:21 AM on May 01

Can someone who knows about hockey explain why Ovechkin not getting ice time is a good thing? Can you have a defensive strategy and your best player on the ice?

posted by bperk at 10:38 AM on May 01

bperk: I think right now Alexander Semin is getting more ice time than Ovechkin because he is playing harder on defense, blocking shots, and back checking (getting back on defense). On defense Ovechkin tends to be a liability, even in the playoffs. He doesn't look interested in playing defense often times, or he'll skate around high in the defensive zone looking for an outlet pass for a breakaway, instead of covering the point man (the offense's defenseman) or helping the defense in the corner.

This isn't always the case though, sometimes he looks engaged and bothers to play defense. The problem is he isn't consistent. You can't afford not to play defense in the playoffs.

I'm pretty confident though that he'll get a lot more ice time when he's playing on home ice because the home team gets the last bench change before faceoffs, so the coach will probably match him up against the Rangers' weakest defensive pairing or their third or fourth line.

Even so, I think the Caps coach Dale Hunter is making a mistake by not playing Ovechkin more. He's the team's leading scorer and the captain. Ovechkin needs to lead by example by playing hard on both ends of the ice, like a captain should. I'm not really sure he should even be captain of the team, but there you have it.

posted by insomnyuk at 11:18 AM on May 01

Even so, I think the Caps coach Dale Hunter is making a mistake by not playing Ovechkin more.

I think it's a gamble, but if it works it's going to be huge. The less ice time Ovechkin gets now, the fresher he's going to be in later games in the series/playoffs.

As well, Ovechkin should be simmering mad to prove that he deserves more ice time. An angry, motivated Ovechkin could be a dangerous thing to opponents.

posted by grum@work at 11:29 AM on May 01

That Bald Vinny blog post is depressing. I can understand the impulse to lay everything out there on your blog, but he's at a place where he has to market himself successfully this year or his livelihood is kaput. Doing it with so much negativity is self-defeating.

He has 10,000 Twitter followers, a prominent place in Yankees fan lore and enough juice to get the GM to come sit with him for an inning. There are things he can try to do with that platform, like starting a fan Internet forum devoted to the team, looking for more opportunities to promote sports- and Yankees-related ventures and hosting a radio show or podcast. Or he could keep networking himself as an event planner to Yankees fans until he finds one to hire him.

Kvetching about how the Yankees don't want him is a waste of time.

posted by rcade at 11:34 AM on May 01

An angry, motivated Ovechkin could be a dangerous

Ovechkin needs motivation. He's got everything required to be a great player except motivation ... at least in the defensive end.

Ovechkin was -8 in regular season this year. Not being a penalty kill specialist, -8 means he's a liability to his team .. he's on the ice for more goals against than he produces on offence.

Hunter knows what he is doing, and unlike Washington coaches preceeding him that were fired to cater to Ovechkin, he doesn't give a shit because the Caps make no bones about his interim status. He can simply focus on giving the Caps the best chance to win.

posted by cixelsyd at 12:01 PM on May 01

So who here thinks Roy Hodgson will be leading the Three Lions to trophies at Euro2012 or WC2014 and earn himself a peerage?

posted by billsaysthis at 12:14 PM on May 01

Not being a penalty kill specialist, -8 means he's a liability to his team

FYI- the plus/minus rating is only for even strength play. Goals against on the PK don't count against it, and goals on the PP don't either.

posted by tahoemoj at 12:29 PM on May 01

I think Roy Hodgson will help lead England to second place in their group and a quarterfinals knockout. Also known as, same as it ever was and evermore shall be.

posted by holden at 12:35 PM on May 01

Given that an England QF will most likely be against either Spain or Italy, that sounds about right.

posted by etagloh at 12:52 PM on May 01

the plus/minus rating

Thanks for clearing that up.

Makes Ove's value to the Caps look even worse.

posted by cixelsyd at 01:02 PM on May 01

he doesn't give a shit because the Caps make no bones about his interim status.

Actually, he doesn't give a shit because he's made no bones about wanting to get back to running his money-printing operation here in London (London Knights junior hockey team). As co-owner/coach, he was the be-all/end-all of hockey in this town. He took a step down to coach his former NHL team.

That said, London has a better-than-even chance of getting to the Memorial Cup, and even winning it. If the Caps get eliminated, there's a chance he could be the only person in history to coach in the Memorial Cup and Stanley Cup playoffs in the same year.

posted by grum@work at 01:28 PM on May 01

Makes Ove's value to the Caps look even worse.

Can you explain how?

posted by yerfatma at 02:55 PM on May 01

Forgive me if this has been posted before, but this is a great clip of an intense badminton rally.

posted by Joey Michaels at 03:50 PM on May 01

One thing confuses me in that clip: is there no out-of-bounds for the backline? It seems like some of those shots would have gone way out, but it might just be perspective.

posted by yerfatma at 04:17 PM on May 01

Can you explain how?

If I may presume...I think it could make his value worse because the +/- was a -5 without counting shorthanded goals. If penalty kills were counted, a player could have a negative number, but also be a very effective even strength player. The fact that Ovie is -5 without PK's shows that he is ineffective at even strength, making his value look worse. But that's just me answering a question posed to someone else, so I'm not sure that's what cixelsyd meant.

posted by tahoemoj at 05:18 PM on May 01

-8 means he's a liability to his team .. he's on the ice for more goals against than he produces

It's cherry-picking to say his -8 this year means he's of such little value to the Caps they should cut his ice time. And -8 doesn't mean he's on-ice for more goals scored against than scored for; it just means that's the case in even-strength. There are plenty of players on the Caps' roster below him in +/-. Should they all be benched as well or does it mean they play different roles? Ovechkin also led all Capitals forwards in ice time and played on a team that allowed more goals than it scored (2.66 to 2.76), so it seems fair to expect him to have a negative value here. He was also involved in 23 power-play goals that +/- doesn't care about.

I've never been sure how much weight to put into +/-. It seems to favor players for being on certain teams; the top 5 for the year are all Bruins. Is that because they're a dominating team that will win the Cup or is it because they were a decent team who had problems scoring on the power play?

posted by yerfatma at 06:07 PM on May 01

One thing confuses me in that clip: is there no out-of-bounds for the backline? It seems like some of those shots would have gone way out, but it might just be perspective.

There is out of bounds, but the trajectory of every deep shuttle shot doesn't follow a nice ballistic arc. As the shuttle slows, it starts to fall quickly, so by the time it is in the back court, it is almost falling vertically, and you can be very embarrassed when letting these ones go, and then watch on helplessly as it drops within the court.

I wish I could draw the arc for you, but hope you can picture it.

posted by owlhouse at 02:01 AM on May 02

I full expect England's Euro 2012 to largely repeat World Cup 2010. Scrape through the first round and get the crap kicked out of them in the second, and Hodgson's face superimposed on a turnip by The Sun.

posted by Drood at 04:13 AM on May 02

Flight of a shuttlecock. Implicit in the advertising seems to be that the steeper the final descent, the better quality the shuttlecock.

posted by JJ at 08:26 AM on May 02

Thanks guys.

posted by yerfatma at 09:03 AM on May 02

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