FanDuel - WFBC

December 12, 2013

SportsFilter: The Thursday 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 - 24 comments

In case anyone ever forgot (or didn't know) what "fly like a butterfly" meant when Ali was describing himself:

Which always reminds me of this Tyson sequence:

And then back to Ali:

posted by grum@work at 09:20 AM on December 12

The genius of Ray Hudson.

posted by yerfatma at 09:37 AM on December 12

I LOVE listening to Ray Hudson clips.

posted by grum@work at 09:54 AM on December 12

I LOVECANNOT STAND listening to Ray Hudson clips.

FTFY grum.

posted by billsaysthis at 10:33 AM on December 12

I know it's an acquired taste, but I don't understand how you can not like someone who has such a passion for what they do. It would be one thing if he wasn't in on the joke or was a pompous ass, but he's just a nut. His Twitter feed is a fun read, even more so during baseball season where he roots (passionately, you'll be surprised to hear) for the Tigers for some reason.

Speaking of Twitter, Hope Solo has beef again, this time with Julie Foudy. I'm starting to think the shots in Solo's ESPN Body Issue feature were retouched, because with skin that thin you should be able to see her internal organs.

posted by yerfatma at 10:36 AM on December 12

If Hudson could control his over the top language to maybe half the passes and shots and tackles in the game I'd be okay with it. But to hear it every minute for entire games, just too much.

posted by billsaysthis at 10:43 AM on December 12

I also would rather turn off the TV than listen to Hudson. He's not Tommy Smyth bad, but that's like being shot in the leg instead of being shot in the face.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:56 AM on December 12

I am highly entertained by Ray Hudson. I don't listen to his broadcasts regularly, so I'm OK with the occasional doses. If I had to listen to just one commentator, I would surely prefer Martin Tyler, but I'm glad Hudson is in the mix.

(Actually, Tyler paired with Andy Gray provides a touch of the Hudson flavor without all the Bernini sculpture references).

The one problem I have with Hudson is that he sounds as though he's full of his own cleverness. Like the drunk at the party that gets going -- people start laughing and the host has to come along and whisper: "please, don't encourage him".

I can totally understand how some people are greatly annoyed by Hudson.

I feel the same way about Mike Lange, and also understand how some folks simply can not tolerate him.

It's Bill Raftery's mouth I want to stuff a ball of duct tape into.

posted by beaverboard at 11:00 AM on December 12

I am highly entertained by Ray Hudson. I don't listen to his broadcasts regularly, so I'm OK with the occasional doses.

And this is why I love listening to his clips.

Small doses of him going crazy over a goal?
I love it.

A whole game of it?
I'd probably hate it, too.

It's the same as Gus Johnson in American broadcasting.

I don't think I could listen to him broadcast an entire football/basketball game, but those last second wins or crazy plays that I see in the highlight packages? It's always fun to watch when he's going nuts about it.

posted by grum@work at 11:29 AM on December 12

Careful what you wish for. Put me down as a Gus Johnson hater. For me he's the anti-Hudson: it feels like he flips a switch and goes into Announcer Mode for the game and then probably turns it off and is completely sedate, whereas Ray Hudson comes across as someone who just can't help themselves. Put it this way: if you were sitting at home on a couch with them, I think Hudson would be jumping out of his seat every 30 seconds, but I find that harder to imagine with Johnson.

posted by yerfatma at 11:35 AM on December 12

Calgary Flames fire GM Jay Feaster

posted by tommytrump at 01:11 PM on December 12

As long as whoever is doing the play-by-play gets it right and calls it clearly, I can stand the overkill. Of course, I was raised on the late Johnny Most, Boston Celtics' announcer, and in my senior years I'm a great fan of Bruins' TV announcer Jack Edwards. Take it over the top if you will, just be entertaining and get it right.

posted by Howard_T at 02:56 PM on December 12

Gus Johnson sounds just like all the Acme School of Broadcasting graduates on drive time commercial radio that we made fun of when I was getting involved in the world of college FM stations.

If you fill out the tiny application form on the back of the matchbook cover, broadcasting school will train you to sound just like Gus does, controlling the inflections and drawing the words out to give a more emphatic and entertaining presence to the chatter.

Elocution, thy name is taffy pull.

Ideally, a trained graduate will sound like a low sodium version of what Fred Armisen and Kristen Wiig sound like on the old SNL Californians skits.

Apparently, someone thinks that is how announcers should sound. And that it will come across as sincere and genuine enthusiasm.

"There goes the Pepsi Tan Tone! It's time to turn, so you won't burn!"

posted by beaverboard at 03:49 PM on December 12

The worst part about Ray Hudson is Phil Schoen, who doesn't do his job. With Ray there providing neon outbursts, Phil fills in at the regular color position, and we're left with no play-by-play at all.

Plus Phil does that J. P. Dellacamera thing where every single play is of major portent, something huge is always about to happen, even if he never actually tells us who's involved. It's exhausting to listen to.

Truth is, all that's required is someone to tell us who just touched the ball. All the rest is dross. American broadcasts are invariably way too color-heavy.

Sometimes I watch a whole match on some mystery feed that gives me stadium noise but no announcers. That's heaven.

posted by Hugh Janus at 04:28 PM on December 12

In the rule 5 draft, the Texas Rangers selected Russell Wilson. Yeah, the QB Russell Wilson. I wonder if he'll show up at Spring Training?

posted by Ufez Jones at 06:50 PM on December 12

Ray Hudson is a poor man's Sid Waddell, but since Sid is no longer with us, he'll have to do.

I'm starting to think the shots in Solo's ESPN Body Issue feature were retouched, because with skin that thin you should be able to see her internal organs.

I can sort of see her point about the 'ponytail posse'. The women's game in the US basically spans two sporting generations: the older one now forms the commentariat covering the younger one, and there's a lot of false nostalgia there. No point in fighting it out on Twitter, though. You just have to wait until your career's over and the call comes in from from the networks: then you can sit alongside your former nemesis and call her an idiot during half-time analysis.

posted by etagloh at 07:31 PM on December 12

Per my previous comment, here's a bit of Johnny Most at his best and another from BuzzFeed with a couple of Jack Edwards' finest.

posted by Howard_T at 09:52 PM on December 12

there's a lot of false nostalgia there

I wouldn't argue that at all (ESPN did a 30 for 30/ Title IX thing that was basically Julie Foudy tripping down memory lane), but Hope Solo just looks nuttier than a twenty pound fruitcake again here. I'm having trouble finding her career record with the US National Team, but she's made a total of 27 appearances (assuming that site is close to correct) and won a Gold Cup and two Olympic Gold medals. As for Scurry, 159 starts "with a record of 133-12-14. She also earned 71 shutouts." Along the way she collected two Gold Cups, two Olympic Golds and a World Cup. I know Solo was benched, probably wrongly, for Scurry in 2007 but how are you going to argue about losing out to someone with almost 6x as many caps? Hell, Scurry has almost 3x more shutouts than Solo has appearances. Much like her uncle Han, Hope is her own worst enemy.

posted by yerfatma at 08:07 AM on December 13

... how are you going to argue about losing out to someone with almost 6x as many caps?

It isn't hard to argue that. National teams often drop accomplished vets for talented young players. Scurry was 36 in 2007 and would be dumped from the team within a year. Solo was 26 and has been on a fantastic run as keeper since then.

When Solo is on the far side of her thirties, she'll probably have six times as many caps and three times as many shutouts as the rising young keeper who takes her spot. It won't mean she shouldn't be replaced.

I like Solo's public Twitter feud with Foudy. Solo's swagger gives the women's sport a little much-needed star power. I don't want them to go all pro wrestling with this stuff, but the sport would lose out if someone taught her to be as anodyne as most pro athletes.

posted by rcade at 08:23 AM on December 13

I'm having trouble finding her career record with the US National Team, but she's made a total of 27 appearances (assuming that site is close to correct) and won a Gold Cup and two Olympic Gold medals.

No, that's well short. An exact record is tough to find, but adding up the matches in ussoccer.com's recount of her career I come up with 130 caps through 2012, and this match preview from early September 2013 has her at 137 caps at that time, and her wikipedia page lists 142 caps, though it does not have a record. She posted her 67th shutout (in her 133rd start) for the USWNT on October 30, 2013 vs. Australia, 4 shutouts shy of Scurry's 71.

Solo and Scurry have remarkably similar career USWNT numbers, with the noteworthy difference that Scurry helped bring home a World Cup. Solo did win the Bronze Ball (from the ussoccer.com link) at the 2011 WWC, becoming the first goaltender to do that.

posted by bender at 09:08 AM on December 13

Ah, thanks. Those numbers seemed incredibly low.

When Solo is on the far side of her thirties, she'll probably have six times as many caps and three times as many shutouts as the rising young keeper who takes her spot. It won't mean she shouldn't be replaced.

I don't follow your logic. Will it also mean the rising young keeper has had a better career at that point?

posted by yerfatma at 09:45 AM on December 13

The logic is that past performance is not indicative of future results. A strong argument can be made that Solo was better than Scurry at that point in 2007, regardless of how much experience they each had.

posted by rcade at 08:22 PM on December 13

I don't argue that at all. I think the decision to bench Solo was at best a strange one. But I don't see how their respective merits in 2007 means Solo was the better keeper in the history of US Women's soccer.

posted by yerfatma at 08:57 AM on December 14

I wasn't arguing about who's better all-time. I was focusing on who deserved the start in 2007. I didn't watch the women's team much when Scurry played. I got into it right around the time Solo melted down over not starting.

posted by rcade at 09:29 AM on December 14

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