jjzucal's profile

Name: J.J. Zucal
Location: Richland, NJ
ZIP: 08350
Member since: April 28, 2005
Last visit: May 08, 2018

jjzucal has posted 81 links and 918 comments to SportsFilter and 0 links and 2 comments to the Locker Room.

Sports Bio

Memorable: at age 7, booing Henry Aaron in Connie Mack Stadium (I must have been a young commie back then).

College: Rider '86.

Occupation: Former sports writer, now a news editor.

Hobbies: Fantasy soccer and hockey; soccer simulation game called Trophy Manager.

Fan: Philadelphia professional teams plus the English Southern League club Slough Town through membership in the My Football Club organization (former majority owners of Ebbsfleet United in England).

Recent Links

Vince McMahon plans to resurrect XFL: WWE founder and chairman Vince McMahon announced Thursday he plans to bring back the XFL in 2020 ... though it won't be like the wild and crazy 2001 season.

posted by jjzucal to football at 04:01 PM on January 25, 2018 - 3 comments

Supreme Court to hear N.J. sports betting arguments Monday: New Jersey's law to permit betting on sporting events, passed by voters in 2011, will get its hour before the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday.

posted by jjzucal to other at 07:20 PM on December 01, 2017 - 5 comments

Bills' move to Nathan Peterman is a disaster: Buffalo head coach Sean McDermott's decision to bench Tyrod Taylor explodes in his face in just one half.

posted by jjzucal to football at 07:43 PM on November 19, 2017 - 10 comments

Ticats prove they're not only bad, but clueless: The train wreck known as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats took their ineptitude to a higher level this week with the Monday hiring of controversial former Baylor head coach Art Briles to be an assistant coach, the reversing of Briles' signing by club officials on Tuesday, and the confirming of media reports that former NFL quarterback Johnny Manziel received a tryout in Buffalo last week.

posted by jjzucal to football at 10:43 PM on August 31, 2017 - 2 comments

Ezekiel Elliott suspended by NFL: Ezekiel Elliott was suspended for six games Friday by the National Football League. The league said the suspension followed a year-long investigation into domestic violence allegations made by a former girlfriend.

posted by jjzucal to football at 08:03 PM on August 11, 2017 - 9 comments

Recent Comments

Arsene Wenger is Leaving Arsenal

There aren't any managers left who are synonymous with a club.

Among the top four tiers, only one manager - Paul Tisdale at League 2 Exeter - remains of managers who took over their club in the 2000's. The longest tenured Premier League managers will be Eddie Howe (Bournemouth) and Sean Dyche (Burnley), who became their clubs' managers 18 days apart in October 2011.

posted by jjzucal at 09:32 PM on April 21, 2018

Arsene Wenger is Leaving Arsenal

With all the talk (distraction?) last season - will he or won't he sign a new contract? - I think this has become Exhibit A for someone staying one season too long.

It's being considered a resignation, not a retirement, but where would Arsene go? I couldn't see him staying in the Premier League: he's now likely "damaged goods" to the large clubs; the others couldn't/wouldn't pay him the salary he would demand. Maybe one of the large French clubs (his home nation)?

posted by jjzucal at 02:25 PM on April 20, 2018

MLB Execs Consider Wild 9th-Inning Batting Rule

This was a solution in search of a problem: the losing team had eight previous innings to NOT be the losing team but could get a "Get Out of Jail Free" card by selecting their starting hitters?

As for the quote, to cite "star" players in other sports is a flawed argument. Basketball, hockey and football have free substitution, so players could go to the bench for rest and return; thus, the "stars" often are in at game's end. Soccer doesn't have free substitution, so the "stars" must be physically able to go 90/120 minutes or potentially find themselves sidelined.

One beauty of baseball is "strategy" -- pinch-hitters, defensive replacements and relief pitchers are part of late-inning strategy. Here's the GOJF card: I pull my 25-HR, .300 hitting 3B in the 7th for defensive purposes, but I get to bring him back to hit in the 9th. If my new 3B hits just .240 (but is a vacuum with great range), I could skip him in the order, let my first 3B hit, then bring the defensive 3B back if the 10th inning is needed. No strategy there!

posted by jjzucal at 03:19 PM on February 23, 2018

MLB announces pace of play initiatives for '18

I'd love to see the period between innings trimmed to 1:30, but it means fewer commercials: less money that comes to the clubs. I really have a problem with the visits, especially since it includes players that "do not require either to vacate their position": an infield/pitcher meeting often is one to discuss strategy on defense or how to pitch to a batter; will infielders now have to yell strategy to the pitcher?

Why do I have a feeling much of this will be forgotten by the All-Star break? Sort of like defining the strike zone, then the strike zone returns to whatever umpires call.

posted by jjzucal at 09:37 PM on February 20, 2018

Vince McMahon plans to resurrect XFL

I was thinking about him: players must stand for National Anthem, no players with criminal backgrounds. It seems Vince is looking to attract the "Boycott NFL" folks but I believe he'll learn something quickly: that group is small (relative to all NFL fans) and will get smaller as more objectors return to watching the NFL by the end of 2019.

posted by jjzucal at 10:22 AM on January 27, 2018

NFL Pick 'Em Champion: Tron7

If only I remembered to post for two weeks ...

Many congrats, Tron; thanks, rcade ... now I'll sit for four months of SportFi Premier League fantasy "garbage time."

posted by jjzucal at 10:03 AM on January 05, 2018

NFL Pick 'Em Week 16: Gene Steratore's Index Card Edition

There's a bug that has jjzucal out of sort in the standings.

The "bug" was my brain going into massive lock mode. Didn't realize until Monday night I forgot to make my picks.

Baltimore by 13 LOCK

Minnesota by 12 LOCK

Chicago by 14 LOCK

Cincinnati by 5 LOCK

L.A. Rams by 6

Kansas City by 7 LOCK

New England by 23 LOCK

Atlanta by 3 LOCK

N.Y. Jets by 3

Washington by 10 LOCK

Carolina by 13 LOCK

San Francisco by 6 LOCK

Seattle by 5

Arizona by 10 LOCK

Philadelphia by 18 LOCK

Pittsburgh by 15 LOCK

posted by jjzucal at 10:07 AM on December 23, 2017

NFL Pick 'Em Week 15: Concussion Protocol Edition

Well, isn't this embarrassing! I just realized, as I saw the Patriots escape from Pittsburgh, that I missed these. Guess who won't be third any more!

posted by jjzucal at 07:26 PM on December 17, 2017

NFL Pick 'Em Week 14: Get Better Ryan Shazier Edition

Who raised that damn hurdle over which I tripped? ... I must have lost quadruple points for blowing two chances at an Eagles' NFC East championship.

Atlanta by 5

Buffalo by 14 LOCK

Cincinnati by 10 LOCK

Green Bay by 13 LOCK

Oakland by 7 (without penalties to extend the game)

Dallas by 20 LOCK

Tampa Bay by 9 LOCK

Minnesota by 5

San Francisco by 10

Denver by 3

Arizona by 6

L.A. Chargers by 7

Philadelphia by 16 LOCK

Seattle by 13 LOCK

Pittsburgh by 17 LOCK

New England by 21 LOCK

posted by jjzucal at 07:45 PM on December 07, 2017

Supreme Court to hear N.J. sports betting arguments Monday

According to many media outlets, it appears the justices may be inclined to overturn the federal ban.

posted by jjzucal at 05:17 PM on December 04, 2017

Supreme Court to hear N.J. sports betting arguments Monday

I was among those who voted against the referendum, not because of the betting, but because of the limitations on where bets could be placed. While betting parlors/offices and online betting are standard in many countries, New Jersey would limit betting sites to the racetracks and casinos, presumably to attract business to each.

Here's more background on the law and history.

posted by jjzucal at 04:42 PM on December 03, 2017

CFL Playoff Pick 'Em, Final Standings

I was out all day and got in just in time to see Shania Twain perform in a snowstorm ... which, I presume, she's never done.

Watching the blockers running with Cassius Vaughn's 109-yard fumble return, I had one thought: "Get out of the way!" Thankfully, one went for a block, the others gave room, and my frown turned to a smile. You know the rest of the story.

The Eagles went to 10-1 and the Argos won the Grey Cup. All in all, it was a terrific day!

posted by jjzucal at 07:26 PM on December 01, 2017

Are You Ready for Some Football?

A) The draw was conducted inside the State Kremlin Palace. B) Russia was the first ball selected. C) Russia received a fairly easy Group A. I'll go full-blown conspiracy theorist: did Putin play with the balls before the draw?

In Group B, who was the last team Portugal would have wanted to face? Diego Maradona now may be more hated in Portugal than in England.

Group G: England is England ... you could group England with Basingstoke, a SportFi club and 23 random players and they'd still figure a way to screw up.

posted by jjzucal at 03:53 PM on December 01, 2017

NFL Pick 'Em Week 13: With the First Pick the Giants Take Edition

Washington by 13 LOCK (E-A-G-L-E-S win NFC EAST!)

Minnesota by 3 (Case Keenum: NFL's Some Guy Not Named Carson Wentz Offensive Player of the Month for November)

New England by 20 LOCK

Chicago by 15 LOCK

Tampa Bay by 6

Houston by 5

Miami by 7

Kansas City by 13 LOCK

Jacksonville by 17 LOCK

Baltimore by 11 LOCK

L.A. Chargers by 23 LOCK

Oakland by 20 LOCK (Say a prayer for Geno Smith)

New Orleans by 10 LOCK (Play the OVER)

L.A. Rams by 7

Philadelphia by 17 LOCK

Pittsburgh by 6 LOCK

posted by jjzucal at 08:21 PM on November 30, 2017

New York Giants bench Eli Manning, start Geno Smith

Mike Francesa is a few weeks from ending his career at WFAN-AM, but not before he issues a classic rant in McAdoo's direction.

posted by jjzucal at 07:12 PM on November 28, 2017