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Red Sox 2011 Post Mortem

October 5, 2011

Water is clean and pure and capable of washing away man’s sin. Last week, raindrops fell from the sky and struck my window sill with the cadence of a revolutionary enlisted regiment. I awoke in a foggy glaze of the night prior. The events transpiring in a dreamlike flash that could only be harbored in my narrowest subconsciousness. The better part of me forgetting what caused such a restless night’s sleep, I immediately snapped into an intense clarity from the slamming of metal whose rusted pistons signified refuse had been cleared from the street. Suddenly, water, with its solely unique volatility to sustain life and create decay,  became toxic when mixed with the human waste removed from the slick pavement. The Red Sox season ended earlier that morning. Moon light casted a midnight shadow over a vacant Fenway Park whose grass would go dormant and die before stitched rawhide rolled along it again.

Often, the feats of an athlete or team are romanticized in such a way to make Thoreau or Emerson himself wish they had crafted the words. I tried it for the previous paragraph, and found that aside from sounding like a douche, the 2011 Red Sox deserve no such pleasantries. The garbage removal description is a fitting coincidence to this Red Sox season. It’s a week later, and I feel no different than the minute after Evan Longoria did his best Dr. Kevorkian and used a walk-off home run to euthanize this Red Sox season. Sick, pitiful, and causing more pain with each passing day, it was the merciful thing to do.

Somewhere over the past seven years, the Red Sox shifted from an emotion-filled baseball team of self-proclaimed idiots and cowboys, to a faceless corporation of high paid suits working a 9-5. Maybe that’s what happens when you win the World Series for the first time in 86 years. Then do it again three years later. Gradually, the losses hurt less, the wins provided less joy, and I found myself  rooting for a team with about two likeable players. The Green Monster is littered with advertisements, center field tells me where to grocery shop, NESN is forcing Bill James “Temperature Gauge” down my throat like a Nathan’s Hot Dog contest, and Fenway Park is a summer social scene rivaling the swanky bars on the wharf. In 2003, I cried myself to sleep after Aaron (Uffin’) Boone ended the  Red Sox World Series hopes with a left field walk off homer. In 2011, I was numb to Longoria doing the same thing. If the guys on the field didn’t care, I couldn’t either. Quite frankly, I needed this loss. The Red Sox as an organization needed this loss.

Now, after the biggest collapse in regular season history, heads are starting to roll. Francona, the most successful manager in Red Sox history is the first to go. Citing a mutual decision, in which reports say Tito simply lost control of a clubhouse full of prima donnas. While many fans might wish it weren’t true, Tito became such a player’s manager, and kept things so “in house” that there was a mutiny. Unfortunately, captain’s go down with their ship.

The fact that fans and the media are so outraged by pitchers drinking beer in the clubhouse shouldn’t be such a “holy shit” moment. In the 60s, 70s, and 80s, guys were borderline stoned and cracked out on the field. Baseball and beer are practically synonymous. David Wells pitched his perfect game hungover on no sleep from the night before, and if you read any accounts from old-time baseball, most players were notorious drunks (Ruth, Foxx, Cobb, Mantle to name a few Hall of Famers). Blame this season on some Bud Light smoothies all you want, but it required much more for a collapse of this magnitude. True pros don’t let things like beer get in the way of their craft. I may or may not be shnockered right now, but it wouldn’t get in the way of amazing blogging.

Bud Light Girls. Because there haven't been any girls in this blog. I'm too focused.

More realistically, this season went to hell in a handbasket when the starting pitchers all dropped faster than acid in front of Jimi Hendrix. After Dice K’s elbow finally exploded from all those imaginary gyroballs he could throw, Clay Buchholz’ literal broken back was the straw that broke the idiomatic camel’s back. Suddenly, we were left with a rotation of:  

Jon Lester: Mediocre all season, with a few gems mixed in, until an embarrasing September in which he resembled a left-handed John Lackey.

Josh Beckett: Had a fine season, and I hate to come down hard on a guy with a sub-3 ERA, but this dude was straight up obese by the end of the year. In his final start, he was resting his glove on his pot belly while holding runners on like Homer Simpson rests a Duff on his gut.

Erik Bedard: What do you say about a guy who doesn’t just live on the DL, he buys up other property and becomes the landlord? Thanks for those 5 inning, 3 run efforts you served up.

Tim Wakefield: The quest for 200 wins took longer than Ulysses” god-forsaken Iliad and Odyssey combined. Night in and night out were were treated to Timmy lobbing watermelons up to the dish praying one night we’d score 12 and not give up 13.

John Lackey: Shellackey, Mouth Breather, Big Hoss, pick your name for him, but this guy just put up the worst statistical pitching season in Red Sox history. If you missed it, don’t worry, there’s 3 years at 17 million per remaining on his contract. The only thing that could make Lackey more unlikeable  is if I told you he is in the process of divorcing his cancer-stricken wife. Wait. Crap.

Basically, we were taking the field every night with a disadvantage in pitching matchups come September. On top of all that, the lineup somehow stopped producing.

Adrian Gonzalez – turned into a singles hitter, as reports came up that his surgically repaired shoulder limited his power. Not sure how everybody forgot he even had a surgically repaired shoulder when he decided to use his SURGICALLY REPAIRED SHOULDER  in the Home Run Derby.  There were times during the season Gonzalez looked like me roping opposite field home runs during wiffle ball. There were other times he put up consistently horrendous at bats against the Yankees and Rays in every big September game.

Kevin Youkilis– You can’t be that out of shape and constantly banged up for so long without it taking its toll. I can’t picture Youkilis making any movement without a grimace and wince. Dude probably rips a hemi just trying to wipe. Now let’s see what a full year flopping around at third base got him: a hip flexor and sports hernia that landed him on the bench during  the most important month. Perfect.

Varitekalamacchia– The catching platoon that actually produced some of the best power totals from that position was nonexistant in the final month. ‘Tek simply is too old to be squatting when the September chill hits his bones. Salty hits breaking pitches worse than Bobbi Brown hit Whitney, and the league figured that out.

Carl Crawford– somehow, went from being the best statistical player in the game last year, to an anemic liability this year. He actually had a few walk-off hits early in the season that everyone assumed would snap him out of his slump. But for whatever reason, once he signed a contract for triple the Rays payroll this year, he apparently thought he had to bat .700 with 113 home runs and 346 rbis. What I still can’t figure out is how he wasn’t even stealing bases. I know you need to get on base to steal, but he was a total non-factor in every aspect of the game. Fittingly, the Red Sox lost the final game on a ball that Crawford failed to make the play on. It summed up his entire suck season in Boston.

In the end, the real Red Sox fans have their team back: chokers who invented new ways to lose. It just took a few seasons of looking in the mirror and lying to ourselves to finally recognize how much has changed. We see all of these problems and finally realize we need help. Theo has been living off World Series titles that  have masked his inability to add any productive piece to the team via free agency.  When you’re a big market ballclub, Moneyball is fun, but it’s the actual money that puts you over the top.

Stay tuned…

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Can Red Sox Play Game #163?

September 27, 2011

Heidi Watney just finished fumbling her way through another post-game interview. The Red Sox star of the game just finished answering her muddled, predictable questions: each one ending in some form of “how were you able to do that.” None of this is really news (other than the fact there was a Red Sox star of the game, implying a win). The story here is the player answering those questions. No, Jacoby Ellsbury did not get asked to talk, even though he hit ANOTHER home run, this time giving the Sox a 2-1 lead. Yes, Heidi tossed softball questions to a Yale product who probably could have better explained the current world economic crisis: rookie catcher Ryan Lavarnway.

Just mute it and enjoy.

Ryan WHO!? La-varn-way. Phonetic. Phenomenal. Phuckin’ clutch. Lavarnway is the Red Sox reigning two-time Minor League Offensive Player of the Year. But you couldn’t predict this one. Early in the game Francona had a soundbyte explaining his decision to go with Lavarnway over banged up starter Jarrod Saltalamacchia: “maybe he’ll run into one. Otherwise, we’ve got Salty to finish off the game.” Ahh Terry, you sly fox. You meant run into one or TWO. As in Lavarnway would clobber not one but two (not Green, we’re in Baltimore) MONSTER home runs. The first a three run homer to provide a 5-1 lead. The second an insurance run making it 8-4 at the time, ended up being the difference in an 8-7 win in which Sox relievers tried as hard as they possibly could to blow the game.

So now, the Red Sox live to see another day. They actually trailed the Rays by 1/2 a game in the win column tonight for about an hour. Red Sox ace Jon Lester is on the mound tomorrow. Beyond that, nobody knows what to expect from these Red Sox. The team who started the year 0-6, is trying to finish the regular season on a two-game win streak, something they haven’t had since August. The win tomorrow will only ensure a one game playoff with the Rays. And as sure as Alfredo Aceves’ arm (three straight appearances, 3 2/3 innings tonight) is held together with toothpicks, crazy glue, rubber bands and Bengay, that one-game playoff WILL happen if the Red Sox win. There’s no way the Rays go out tomorrow and lose to the Yankees spring training split squad team. The Yankees threw their top four relievers in the loss tonight, so none will be available tomorrow. They earned that rest. All the Rays have to do is beat up on second or third rate pitching. Red Sox fans earned a pacemaker and some Zantacs in watching a month with just six wins, and a nine game lead erased.

But what about that one game playoff? Who would even be pitching? The Rays will have lefty phenom Matt Moore, who has only struck out 15 batters in 28 outs. The Red Sox? Reports today said they were looking into trading for a guy to start one game, then not even be available for the playoffs. Desperate? That’s worse than taking your cousin to prom. It’s having your mom PAY your cousin to go to prom with you. For $161 million this season, that’s what the Red Sox money will get them. That, or John Lackey. Now, the cousin coming to prom doesn’t look so bad, does it?

What’s going to happen? Who knows. The Red Sox might go out and have a classic double figure scoring day and the Rays could get shutout by no names. That’s the beauty of baseball. My money’s on a one-game playoff in Tampa Bay. Rookie phenom versus disgruntled mouth-breather with the highest single season ERA in Red Sox history (Lackey). Advantage: Rays

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Tom Brady Playing Madden, in the NFL

September 21, 2011

Two games: 940 passing yards, seven touchdowns. No, these aren’t the stats of my last two online Madden games (I’d clearly top those, let’s get real) they are real life NFL stats. Easily the top story in the NFL that nobody seems to be talking about is the dismantling of opposing defenses at the gilded hands of Sir Thomas Edward Patrick Brady Jr. (knighted in [New] England for his play. This parenthetical usage got awkward when I had to use a bracket, most likely improperly, to leave out the “New.” If you’re counting; including that semicolon, there have been six different grammatical conventions used inside these curvatures). Each pass seems to be guided by Hermes, Greek god of flight, as the ball nestles into receiver’s bosoms en route to first down after first down, resulting in touchdown. For whatever reason, the media and experts seem to have glanced over Brady’s two-week feat like a pubescent teen seeing an article in Playboy (as opposed to a grown man, who obviously reads Playboy for the articles).

Any time I can get a Playboy reference into a football blog, you know Sara Jean Underwood's cover is coming next...

The numbers are staggering, mind-boggling, obnoxious or any other expression synonymous for “insane as Van Gogh on an acid trip.” Referencing an artist is no coincidence. Tom Brady has been making the Mona Lisa look average (sidenote: the Mona Lisa is a pretty average-to-ugly chick. Does anyone know how it’s the most popular, highest insured painting ever? Like, you’re at a bar, Mona’s just sitting there, hands on her lap, and she isn’t getting two looks from anyone but your fat, blacked out friend who is convinced she’s smirking at him). Brady is throwing at such an indorinate amount of yards, he could be held to just fourteen in his upcoming matchup with the Bills and STILL be on pace to break Dan Marino’s single-season passing yards record.

For whatever reason, and perhaps it’s just my New England bias, Peyton Manning’s neck, Michael Vick’s concussion, Tony Romo’s lung, or Cam Newton’s 0-2 record have captured all the story lines in the NFL. Meanwhile, all Brady’s done is win AFC Offensive Player of the Week honors in back-to-back weeks. With Buffalo, (who just allowed 35 points to Jason Campbell’s Raiders) next on the leger, a three-peat of that award should shock no one. The question that needs to be asked is: are we about to see the best offensive performance EVER by a football team? Here are five reasons why the answer is yes.

1: Nobody has ever played QB better.

Tom Brady has a home winning streak (29 games)  that makes Charlie Sheen look like a loser. In his last 10 regular season games, he has had a QB rating of 110 or better in all but one. That ONE being a 107 in a 34-3 win against Buffalo where he threw three touchdowns and no picks. In Dan Marino’s record-setting yardage (5,084) and touchdown season (48, since broken by Manning then Brady), he had a 100+ rating in 9 of his 16 games.

2. The Patriots Defense Sucks

While Brady has been the gold-standard for quarterback statistics, the Patriots defense has tried their best to make opponents look as good. In two weeks, Brady, with his ridiculous numbers has only thrown for 144 more yards than his defense has allowed. This means you better get used to offensive explosions that would make Michael Bay proud. It’s not absurd to think Brady has many more 400+ yards games in his back pocket, as the last game against San Diego, he went the entire third quarter with just two possessions, one being a three and out.

3. Don’t Worry- Opposing Defenses Suck, Too!

That little lockout thing really got in the way of defenses being able to come together as units. Every team in the league is throwing the ball all over the place. Four different Quarterbacks not named Brady are also on pace to break Marino’s record. Cam Newton, the rookie phenom who critics said couldn’t throw at the NFL level, has only gone out and thrown for 422 and 432 yards respectively in his two times stepping onto an NFL field. Ryan Fitzpatrick (Bills) and Matthew Stafford (Lions) are tied with Brady for the NFL lead in touchdown passes, and best record of 2-0. Nothing seems to be making much sense. The outlier here is that you could see this coming from Brady, not the rest of the league.

4. Patriots Receivers are Really, Really Good

New England is the only team in the league without a dropped pass. Wes Welker and Deion Branch, neither of whom tops 5’9”, are both averaging over 100 yards receiving per game. Hybrid Tight End Aaron Hernandez is splitting wide like a receiver and burning secondaries just as quickly, with two scores and an over 80 yards per game average. Behemoth Tight End Rob Gronkowski leads the NFL in touchdown receptions, tweets at Kate Upton–> http://bit.ly/p9rg2G, attendance at frat parties–> http://bit.ly/lL7yWY, and you guessed it, he’s in the top 20 with the above players in yards receiving. This hasn’t even brought us to Chad Ochocinco, the most well-known Patriot receiver. Ocho should finally know the playbook by Week 5, once he’s done tweeting his every move and buying his gold-digging fiancee, Evelyn Lozado, the stuff Antoine Walker could no longer afford. The scariest part here, is that Brady hasn’t even clicked with all his weapons. Additionally the offense has looked rusty on some of their wide receiver/running back screens that normally gouge defenses at key points.

5. Bill Belichick

We saw it in 2007, and we are about to see it this year. Not necessarily the 16-0 record, because this defense won’t be good enough, but definitely the unconscionable ability to show no mercy on a scoreboard. At this point in both Brady and Belichicks careers, they have seen everything, heard all the detractors, and decided to flip them the finger, in unison. If you don’t think records mean anything to Bill and Tom, just look at the way scores were run up in that 2007 season while Brady ran play action at the 1 yard line for TDs. Belichick is a football historian, and he knows full well the records within the team’s grasp this season.

Not to mention Kate Upton within Gronk's grasp.

Stay tuned…

 

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The ESPYs Running Diary

July 14, 2011

We’re live at the ESPYs in sunny LA for what is sure to be a roast of Lebron James, and a toast to Aaron Rodgers. Obviously, I’m one of 174 Americans watching the red carpet show and from the looks of it, ESPN has their full posse of blonde women who know nothing about sports, but are amazing at awkward jokes in interviews with athletes that lead to painfully stunted answers, employed for the evening. Sorry, that sentence was almost as awkward. Nary ten minutes ago, Kevin Love and Blake Griffin were backed into the “no homo” moment of the night as Erin Andrews brought up how they discussed each other’s outfits/matching Ray Bans.

Truly serious journalists working for ESPN this evening.

Aside from that, some chick named Jenn Brown is backstage interviewing players who can’t stop thinking about getting her drunk after the show, and Michelle Beadle ambitiously plays the less-hot-but-cooler-than-Erin Andrews card. Speaking of odd sexual tension, Brian Wilson is obviously in a tuxedo unitard, and Justin Bieber has stolen the show with his boyish good looks and inability to be taller than Selena Gomez. The show is about to begin, Tunde is going to be in and out making hilarious comments, so let’s get to the diary!

9:00: One of the coolest highlight montages is consistently the ESPYs show open. You forget about some plays, remember others, and see plays you must have missed during a long weekend bender trippin’ on Paoti with Spider Monkey off the coast of St. Barth’s.

9:05: The athlete’s who died in the past year montage reminds us that Sparky Anderson wasn’t already dead.

9:08- Seth Meyers comes out for his montage. Somehow this dude just soared onto the scene because he looks oddly like the special ed kid Timmy from South Park, and for no other discernible reason.

Timmy.

Seth.

– Seth busts out what seemed like 7 consecutive lame Brian Wilson beard jokes.

-Seth only makes one real joke about the Heat and one backhanded joke about them. ESPN and Nike obviously forced that limit, otherwise Seth would have made not one, not two, not three, not four, not five, not SIX jokes about them.

– Seth does a series of “Dodgers are so poor jokes” with his best being they no longer have a 3rd base coach, they just put up a mirror that reflects the first base coach.

– Seth says Yao Ming announced he is ‘retiring from basketball, but he could just be retiling his bathroom,’ arguably his best joke of the entire montage that only drew awkward laughter until people got it, but he had already moved on.

9:21- Consensus on Seth’s grade sat at a 6 within the six humans currently living in our apartment that was legally rented to just four humans.

9:22- Emmanuelle Chriqui comes on to present an award that I obviously forgot by now, because she’s talking and I haven’t heard a word she’s said. She’s in something black and sparkly and her hair is straight a perfect and she’s smiling, and I’m just mush.

Not even fair to other girls.

9:23 Turns out the award is for best breakout athlete. Jose Bautista is in this category with a bunch of rookies, a collegian, and an azn female golfer named three tiny syllables with a dash in there that formed her surname, too. Bautista is turning 31, and just followed up a 54 home run season with 31 at the All Star Break. Does this dude know this is the post-steroids era? Not 1997.

9:24- Blake Griffin wins the award, camera cuts to Cam Newton, and he is STUNNED. Blake thanks “Sloan” for the award– solid move, Blake. Tunde and I aren’t sure how we feel about the new race that’s been created where half-white/black people are now dominating sports. Tunde obviously has a leg up on creating such an athlete in the future, since he is an athlete and I write a blog about them.

9:31- Chris Berman is out presenting a series of serious, uplifting stories from the year including Mark Herzlich’s recovery from bone cancer, and wounded warriors climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. You could see Boomer shaking, while he held back one of his annoying voices with a last name pun and his own man-made sound effects.

9:35- Best Championship Performance ESPY goes to… Timmy Thomas of the Bruins! Seemingly a no-brainer, Tim is visibly shaken as he graciously thanks his teammates. Dude is like Brian Cardinal, only if Brian Cardinal was the best player in the NBA.

9:38- Video Spoof time brought to you by Blake Griffin and Kevin Love. This clip is legitimately funny, so you should just watch it. Now:

9:43- Maria Sharapova announced the winner for best upset: “The winner is, THE VCU!” I know, I know, it’s awesome when people who speak English as probably a third language put definite articles where they don’t belong in everyday speech.

9:50- They try to do a live skit about the Vancouver Kissing Couple. Basically, it was the worst, least funniest thing that has happened on TV since one of those animal cruelty/adoption ads you see on ABC Family after midnight with a Sarah McLachlin song in the background. At this point, I’m getting physically upset at how unfunny this thing was. Who previews these things and decides they might make anybody laugh? Chris Berman?

9:53- Yes, the Vancouver Kissing Couple skit lasted three painfully long minutes. Kind of like any three-minute interview involving Erin Andrews asking an athlete questions.

9:54- Justin Timberlake is out with Aaron Rodgers, and he’s obviously just being his overacting, trying-too-hard-to-be-funny self. I miss the days when comedic actors were comedians, and not lead singers of boy-bands who started banging Hollywood actresses, so they thought they could act, too.

9:56- Best College Athlete award, and I’m not loving the lax bros chances here. Cam Newton is literally sick to his stomach as he loses another award, and this time it’s to a white guy. As Tunde has so eloquently said, “I mean if it’s a fan vote, the white boy is gonna win. If they ain’t got no internet, how they supposed to vote?!” Before the award was given out, I said Cam’s got this (since he did have arguably the greatest season in college football history), with the caveat that if it’s a fan vote (and it is) Jimmer has it on lock. Bang.

10:04- Kiefer Sutherland is out to present the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. Generally the best part of the ESPYs, we get the added bonus of Matthew McConaughey narrating the story. Maybe we will be brought to tears, similar to his compelling monologue on the highway of the Brooklyn Bridge to win back Kate Hudson’s heart in “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.”

Dewey Bozella served over 30 years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit. He was offered parole multiple times if he just admitted to the murder. He refused and finally was proven innocent. Total bad ass. He boxed his way through Sing Sing prison, and hopes to open a gym to train young kids in the community. The situation is even more dire because the gym he currently trains at was just closed down. Something tells me there are a couple people in the audience tonight to help him out. Just sayin’…

10:28- Best Male Athlete intros and Rafael Nadal better not win. I’m fine with any foreigner, but this man-capris wearing fool, taking this award, even a German.

10:30- Dirk takes it… then leans over and kisses his gorgeous African-AmerGerman(?!) wife. So obviously, he’s going to be making the new superbreed Tunde is so worried about. Just picture a 7-foot light skinned fellow burying one-footed jumpers, and jumping over whatever new South Korean car is being made in 2031. On a serious note, is there a reason we didn’t know Dirk’s wife was black? In the pool of all the racially intolerant nationalities who might marry outside their ethnicity, you have to figure the German guy with blonde hair and blue eyes wasn’t a favorite here.

Serena, in the flesh...

1032: Serena Williams breasts are out to announce the upcoming award to Best Female Athlete. I’m not sure where feminists stand nowadays.  They could be proud you can see 62% of Serena’s rack, since no society ruled by men should force her to conform to their ideals of appropriateness. Or, they could be mad that she just got every man’s attention and made us realize we were about to keep watching an award given out to a female athlete, just because we saw 62% of her rack. Total conundrum.

1034: Tim Tebow is out on stage with Brooklyn Decker. ESPN didn’t have to think long about which athlete posed the least threat to want to have a pre-martial, adulterous affair with her.

10:35- Britney’s “Till the World Ends” plays for the Best Female Athlete, and Lindsey Vonn “Did it again.” Tebow just nailed that double entendre: both using Britney, and the repeat award to a T-bow. Boom. I did it too.

Vonn uses her speech to ask Bieber to take a picture with her for her facebook page. Standard.

10:43- As a final bit of torture, Seth Meyers takes the stage following a commercial stepping over the Vancouver Kissing Couple. This joke is more dead than the entire opening montage of dead athletes combined.

10:45- Seth teams up with Bill Hader of SNL to do a “Dirk Nowitzki Academy for Awkward Basketball” skit. German jokes got uber repetitive in this one.

10:47- Kevin Love is on stage with some skinny-fat kid who ESPN tells us is Jonah Hill. Unless Jonah finally popped, this dude on stage being called Jonah Hill has just been released given his “Make a Wish.” Jonah Hill apparently lost 248 pounds without telling anybody. Almost all his fat is gone, besides the back of his neck, which looks like a cancerous tumor is still there. I don’t know what award is being presented because I can’t stop looking at skinny-fat Jonah Hill. Dude officially has no place in Hollywood now. I assumed he’d just get fatter and fatter until his heart exploded that fateful night he did too much coke. Now, he’s not even the funny ugly fat guy– he’s just ugly and chubby (and the kid from Two and a Half Men has that market cornered!). I can’t stop thinking about the amount of surgery required to tuck all that excess skin away. Hope he called Octomom’s plastic doctor.

10:51- Turns out the award was for best game, and the Eagles 4th quarter comeback against the Giants wins it. Pretty sure Brett Favre deserved this one for the game he kicked at Jenn Sturger.

10:59- Stu Scott is out to talk about the V Foundation in honor of Jim Valvano. The foundation has raised over $100 million to date, which only made me say: “Wait, that’s it?!” Susan G. Komen must be smoking that total, no?! I mean come on people, the V Foundation has been around for 18 years now, donate some money in the name of one of the greatest speeches ever given, ever. Google it and try not to get chills.

11:01- Anthony Robles is the V Foundation Award winner, and this should shock nobody. This dude was born with one leg, and went out and won the NCAA Championship in wrestling. Sure, he’s in a lower weight class than he should be because he’s missing 20% of his total weight (obviously didn’t have to Google that), but that doesn’t make this story any less inspiring. Plus, he went to Arizona State, so he obviously gotten more ass standing on one leg than anyone else in the history of mankind.

Anthony Robles, embarrasing an able-bodied person.

11:05- The story only gets better as we find out Robles’ birth dad ditched the family upon his birth. Then his mom got sick, and his stepdad bailed, too. Robles said he wanted to quit wrestling to get a job and help the family, but his mother refused. So, Robles obviously memorized an inspirational poem along the way and recited it to us. Yes, I am currently typing with goosebumps. I could not feel any worse about my life, than right now. Until right NOW, because I’m thinking about you reading this blog, and not even being the one who wrote it, so I feel a little better.

11:11 Cam Newton, Amber Heard and Cee Lo are out to present the award for best play, but let’s be serious, this has all the makings of a perfect threesome. Black dwarf. Black enormous physical specimen, white chick starring in an upcoming show about the original Playboy bunnies.

For the record, I don’t love the random dude in the MLS who scored a game-winning regular season goal in less-than-amazing fashion to win this one…but he is nominated.

Sure enough, Abby Wambach’s header in the final minute to tie the World Cup game against Brazil that happened three days ago, wins the award. Obviously, if Abby didn’t have the Bieber haircut, this goal would have never happened, ipso facto, Bieber just had the best play of the year. Standard.

11:17- Right on uffin cue, the Biebs in the flesh is presenting the final award of the evening with Danica Patrick. If his balls had dropped yet, he’d be considering ditching Selena for Danica by now. He might still bag Danica, though, because he’s Bieber. Anyway, the award is for Best Team, and the soundtrack to the nominees is Fabolous- “It’s My Time.” Easily one of the top three pump up songs of the last couple years.

Since the NHL won’t win this award, the Bruins are out, even though they probably deserve the award for what they overcame in the playoffs to win the Cup. America is voting, and since literally everybody in America hates Lebron (Miami is a part of Cuba, right) the Mavs win the award.

11:27- I’ll wrap this up as quickly as Seth Meyers did since we are over the 2,000 word mark, and quicker than Bieber in bed with Selena. I know this blog caught you all off guard because it’s been a few weeks since you last heard from me. No worries, one day I’ll give you an explanation. Until then…

Bieber straight killin' it.

Stay tuned…

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NBA Draft Diary: That was Ugly

June 24, 2011

Because this draft got ugly, fast... you get Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.

One of my favorite sports writers from years back and still today is Bill Simmons. One of his notorious pieces that ran every year was an NBA Draft Diary. Simmons would sit, and live timestamp the draft as he went. I tried it last night sitting in my good friend Mikey Mac’s basement. For whatever reason, even though this draft was sure to suck, we were interested because two local stars Kemba Walker of UCONN and Marshon Brooks of Providence were sure to go in the first round. Here’s what transpired in what could be the last piece of NBA action for a while since a lockout is more likely to happen than in the NFL, which is already happening.

7:31 Welcome to the 2011 NBA Draft! Just finished up an opening montage with Adele’s Rolling in the Deep and a bunch of the picks dressed like 1920s mobsters. Mikey Mac can’t believe they aren’t playing more gangster music for the NBA Draft. I think it makes sense since Adele is a thick white chick.

7:33 David Stern smiles through the boos and greets us from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Which means Stu Scoot will be calling it “Brick City” the whole night. Stu’s just so damn hood it hurts.

7:34 Stern calls the crowd “A… good crowd.” then stares blankly at the screen. Mikey and I look at each other until Mikey shakes his head and says, “this guy’s a f$#%ing idiot.”

7:35 Cleveland is on the clock, even though they’ve been on the clock for over a month now. Mikey says the obvious “They gotta know by now…”

Jay Bilas tells us there is no Lebron James in this draft. I’d argue there are going to be 60 Lebron James’ in this draft by the time it’s over: none of them will have a ring, either. As of right now, I own Jay Bilas.

Stu Scott tells us Derrick Williams has “shotten” better than 40% from the 3 pt line. If you’re wondering, yes, spellcheck is alerting me to fix “shotten.” Thanks for that word, Stu.

7:38- Cavs roster is shown on a graphic and Alonzo Gee is listed as a starter at the 3. So it looks like Cleveland might be looking to upgrade at that position, since I’m not sure he’s a real person and Mikey Mac just said to nobody in particular “Who in the f#%k is Alonzo Gee?!”

7:39: Cleveland selects Kyrie Irving, and he hugs a man that Mikey Mac is convinced is Clyde Drexler. It’s not.

So if you’re wondering,  Kyrie Irving is 6’1” weighs 190 pounds, played 11 games in college after a toe injury and goes #1 in the draft. No wonder this league is headed for a lockout. Mikey’s early analysis: “Derrick Williams is like, hell yeah I get to go to Minnesota now and let Kevin Love grab every fuckin rebound while I jack 3s.”

7:41: Mark Rose interviews Kyrie Irving and tells us he only worked out for Cleveland. If Stu and the boys let us know, we could have seen this pick coming sooner, I guess. The ESPN Microphone goes out itnermittently and we get almost no information from Kyrie. Cool. This is the perfect start to such a craptastic draft. We don’t even know what the #1 pick sounds like.

Kyrie’s dad, Clyde, er I mean Drederick is talking now, and he played for Boston University (they churn out not only amazing ballplayers, but bloggers as well). Dude is 3rd in points in school history, behind all-time leader (and good friend of the Revolver) Tunde Agboola, I mean Tunji Awojobi.

7:43: We get to the Wolves #2 pick which will be Derrick Williams.  They discuss Ricky Rubio, and Mikey Mac cannot believe he averaged six points in Europe and we are even discussing him. Bilas asks who the Wolves leader is, since they can’t draft a veteran. This insight doesn’t grow on trees people. How about Kevin Love, Jay?! Dude just put up Moses Malone numbers for an entire season.

7:45: Timberwolves select Derrick Williams as expected. Mikey Mac has been waiting for this interview all day. He is convinced Williams would have gone #1 if it wasn’t for his poor teeth and inability to speak like an educated person. Jay Bilas says he has a loping style, but is explosive, and doesn’t rebound too well, but is efficient. He’s also good at getting And 1s, which I’m not sure you can measure.

Live look in to the Minnesota draft room. It has the vibe of a child’s wake until they realize they’re on TV and give a golf clap.

Derrick Williams interviews, Mikey Mac is on pins and needles. Now I am too. “Oh, he sounds good today…” This is a letdown. Williams sounds pretty normal. Even just used the word “Ultimately” to start his response. Williams is the strongest guy in the draft, we just found out. Something Jay Bilas might have wanted to say. Strength, Jay, is a viable attribute, not And1ingness.

7:49: Jazz on the Clock with the 3rd pick. This is where the draft gets interesting, because there isn’t a single guy left anyone seems to want in the top 10. Mikey Mac is convinced if Brandon Knight goes here, it’s the worst draft in league history since Brandon Knight from Pitt who had a better college career didnt even make the league.

7:51 Jazz select Enes Kanter: We have our first selection this year of a guy nobody has seen play besides at the Nike Hoops Summit. It won’t be our last, unfortunately. Kanter would have played for Kentucky, but he was deemed ineligible because he made money playing in Turkey before that. Which is weird since Coach Cal pays his players much more than Kanter ever made in Turkey.

Fran Fraschilla, the offical Euro-Scout for ESPN just let us know that Enes dropped a record 34 points in that Nike game, so he must be good. Fraschilla also tells us he will “fit in good with that group in Utah”… which is true, since he’s white.

Live look in to the Utah draft room: “They look like their mother just died.” -Mikey Mac.

Interview with a Turk: “I dedicate this first rookie season to Kentucky f23gionj (mangled word). I just learned my second language… incoherent rambling… rambling” and Mark Rose steals the mic. Kanter wraps up another answer and mercifully the interview is over. Honestly, outside of dedicating this first rookie season to Kentucky garbled mess, I’m just looking forward to Kanter’s second or third rookie season.

755: Cleveland is back on the clock. Jeff Van Gundy tells us Cleveland is “bereft of talent” and that actually is a word. Then JVG starts to say Valanciunas, but stops mid-way to call him “the big guy from Lithuania.” Love JVG. Jeff also points out how awkward the draft room claps are after the pick. “OF COURSE THEY’RE CLAPPING, IT’S NO SURPRISE, THEY MADE THE PICK!”

7:56 Cleveland takes Tristan Thompson from Texas. So the Cavs take the Canadian-Texan. Jay Bilas had Thompson as his 7th best available and tells us this isn’t a reach. But it clearly is since he should have been picked 11th at that rate. Bilas goes on to say he’s a great offensive rebounder, but not a good shooter… or scorer offensively. His footwork is “high level, he just needs to learn how to play and score.” Sounds like this guy should have been a dancer, since then he wouldn’t need to learn how to play OR score. Unless you count scoring with Natalie Portman when you’re her choreographer.

7:59 Interview with Thompson and the mic is completely out. Midway through we hear Thompson is shooting 1,000 jumpers a day, which is good. I hope Rajon Rondo is taking 10,000. Thompson answered with about 8 words and the second worst interview of the night (not counting Kanter’s, which we heard, just didn’t understand) is over.

8:00  Toronto is on the clock with the #5 pick and our first commercial break and we see that the Kia Optima is the official car of the NBA and Taco Bell has a summer saver menu. Apparently everyone is gearing up for this lockout, with a cheap automobile and a discounted stuft burrito.

As a quick side note: This is one of the least fun things I’ve ever done. ESPN’s coverage is awful, the players are worse, the interviews are the worst. I hope something turns this around or I’m stopping after the lottery.

Come on Rosie, I'm trying anything at this point...

8:02 -Toronto selects Jonas Valanciunas. That’s the big lithuanian guy Van Gundy was talking about. Mikey Mac called this pick when he thought about all their foreign white guys and said they’d f$*k up and take this guy.

Fran tells us right now he runs the floor well and gets put backs, but Toronto is best served to leave Jonas overseas and let him get stronger. So, by the time he comes to America, we’ll all have forgotten about this guy, basically.

Jonas can’t speak much english, and for some reason Mark Jones asked him about Dirk Nowitzki. Jonas didn’t even know what to say since he’s not German and barely speaks english. Jonas did say, “uhhh my body uhhhh not so strong (smile) so ahhhhhh but uhhhh I move feet good soooo uhhh.” No joke I quoted that as directly as possible. So uhhhh, get excited uhhhh Toronto fans, because uhhhhhh you have ahhhh not so strong guy who move feet good uhhhh.

8:06 Wizards on the clock with pick #6: They have almost no talent besides John Wall. Stu Scott says they need to win more games on the road next year sicne they won three last year. Unfortunately, this is one of the most insightful remarks I’ve heard all night.

8:07 BOOM. That is how you get drafted! Jan Vesely just stole the show as his name gets called  and he proceeded to suck his blonde Euro-girlfriend’s tongue, who is 6’7 from the looks of it. Then he turns and hugs an even finer brunette. Mikey Mac notices this, “this dudes got madd bitches.”

Fran breaks down Jan by saying “First of all, he’s got great taste in women.” Everyone on the ESPN broadcast is completely hot for Vesely’s girl. Fran goes on to say Vesely will win a dunk contest at some point because he is a high flying energy guy. After all that talk, we still know he only scored 10 points a game in Serbia. Apparently NBA teams are drafting foreigners based on the US dollar’s weakness. They’re just hoping points overseas have a strong US exchange rate.

During Vesely’s interview he calls Blake Griffin the US version of Jan Vesely. I like this guy already. Jan must have won the Serbian dunk contest by dunking over a horse and buggy?

8:11 Sacramento is on the clock but they are picking for the Bobcats in a trade involving Stephen Jackson, Corey Maggette and John Salmons. Sacramento selects Bismack Biyombo for Charlotte. Biyombo is from the Congo, which makes me wonder how these guys get found out about. Stu Scott tells us he’s got the coolest name in the draft by far. His wingspan is 7’7” and he had the first triple double in Nike Hoops Summit history.

Fran says until January, three teams in the league might have known about this guy. We find out that “he cannot score.” And that, “You cannot run plays for him. But, he will be an outstanding rebounding player. High risk, high reward, for a guy who is allegedly 18 years old.” Jon Barry is dying laughing for the same reason as you and me at this point. The draft is an absolute joke right now.

Mikey Mac cant wait to see how well Bismack speaks english, since he speaks 6 languages. After the interview, Mikey’s advice is: “He might want to work on one language instead of six.” Bismack says he is excited the way Jordan ran a practice and he was so excited to practice for him. So I guess things are exciting in Charlotte.

815: Pistons on the clock. JVG thinks the hardest part is whether they are totally invested in a rebuild. Since they suck, Id say it’s a good idea. The pick is in and it’s Brandon Knight. Mikey Mac was convinced Kemba was going to Detroit since they love Uconn guys (Rip Hamilton, Ben Gordon, Villanueva).

Bilas says he isn’t a point guard, but is a scorer. He can pass, but isn’t a good passer. And if he can learn the point guard position, he’ll be valuable. If you’re confused, don’t worry, nobody else on the ESPN set knows what to say. So, Stu says he had a 4.3 gpa in high school. Since Brandon never had to go to class at Kentucky, I guess his High School GPA is relevant? He apparently went to a really easy high school with a lot of APs, or the school gpa was out of 6 and he was a C student.

8:20: Commercial break and ESPN is no longer giving me any time to react to picks etc. Basically, with a 5 minute clock, they spend all of it on the pick made, then sprint through to the next pick. We are no longer analyzing who the next team may take. Which is fine, since these guys haven’t been right outside of the top two picks.

Sorry everyone, but this Draft can't be saved. Not even by Rosie. So here's Maggie G.

8:23 Charlotte picks for Sacramento at #9 and takes Kemba Walker. The star and MOP of the NCAA tournament gets easily the biggest applause from the NJ crowd. Bilas says he is a winner, obviously, and that Kemba is at his  best in the open floor. “The knock on Kemba if you want to call it a knock is that he can go into a defender and score and is a good penetrator.” Jay never told us why that would be a knock, so I guess I don’t want to call it a knock. Jay Bilas is basically the younger, taller, better looking. clearer speaking version of John Madden. I’m not sure when this happened, but it did.

Kemba gets interviewed about playing for Jordan in Charlotte, and he says how good he felt working out for them.They then show a video of Kemba doing the Harlem shake for a dance recital at the Apollo. So that was neat, maybe he can have a dance off with John Wall at the next level, if not be a better player.

8:28 Bucks picking for the Kings at #10 because of a trade that ESPN has done an awful job of clarifying.. The Bucks picking for the Kings take Jimmer. ESPN shows us a handwritten contract that Jimmer signed in 2007 in which his older brother made him promise he would do what it took to reach his overall dream of playing in the NBA. I wish I had an older brother who made me reach my goals with handwritten contracts. Jimmer’s older brother, TJ, is a wannabe rapper, so I mean this guy knows all about wanting to reach his goals. Unfortunately, without surgery, TJ will always be white, and not Eminem. Stu tells us Jimmer dropped 40 against prison inmates in his first game playing at the local prison. Mikey Mac questions that by saying, “Right, like they got a f*#$ing guy keeping score in prison…”

8:35 With the 11th pick the Golden State Warriors select Klay Thompson from Washington State University. Klay’s dad Mychal was the number 1 pick in the draft. Mychal is African-American and I’m not basing that solely on the name spelling, he’s on the TV. Klay took on the lighter characteristics of his white mother. When Bilas explains that Klay is very different from his dad, Mikey Mac quickly says, “No shit, he’s white?”

We go on to learn that Klay is one of the best shooters in the draft who is creative in the open floor and was taught to be the guard version of Tim Duncan. I guess Klay will be banking in three-point attempts from here on out.

8:41 With the 12th pick the Utah Jazz select Alec Burks from Colorado. Bilas says he is not a shooter but he has some shake to his game and he can score. “He has defensive potential, but he’s not a great defender.” I’d say that’s probably because he likes scoring more than playing defense, so that shouldn’t change once he goes to a league where nobody plays defense.

Interviews are one question-one answer at this point, and since Burks is American, nothing awesome happened in this time.

847 Phoenix Suns take Markieff Morris at #13. Bilas lets us know that, it’s true, he is the Morris twin considered the worse player of the two. However, he is a true power forward, while Marcus is a tweener. Since every other player has been a tweener so far, you’d think this would have helped Marcus. As Markieff takes the interview, they ask him about his brother Marcus crying. Markieff says, “Yeah, that’s my boy. That’s. My boy.” Marcus was then asked how he’ll deal with being separated from his big bro (Markieff was born 7 minutes earlier than Marcus). Marcus kills the response, saying, “Oh you know, I’ll send him some flowers and fruit.” Yup, that was the most hilarious thing to happen at this draft. Ugh.

8:52  Houston Rockets select Marcus Morris with the very next pick. The stuff only a bad Hollywood script could make up. Twins go back-to-back, and Marcus is technically the younger brother by 7 minutes. Bilas says Houston must be very happy Marcus fell to them. I think they were taking whichever Morris was left, since you can’t tell any difference between them. Marcus seems to be the better twin, based on the clips they showed, but really, it could have been Markieff, so who knows. Maury Povich would need to do DNA tests.

Mark Jones claims he can tell them apart when asked. I call bullshit. Marcus says he wanted to go to Houston since they don’t have a scoring forward. Luis Scola can’t be happy right now. “How pissed is Phoenix gonna be if Marcus turns out to be a stud and Markieff bunks out,” says Mikey Mac, who is talking much less by now since this draft has been awful and pizza arrived.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Yup, it happened. I had to quit at the lottery. This thing was a trainwreck from the start. Not my diary, that made it plausibly entertaining. But this draft, from the venue, to the players, to the broadcast, to the interviews was just one big chinese fire drill. Since this is my first time doing one of these, it has left an awful taste in my mouth. It’s like a bile-burp after you eat some foreign food you’re not used to. I think that’s how I’ll always remember the 2011 NBA draft, which is fitting, since half the guys drafted were foreigners I wasn’t used to.

PS- This draft sucked so bad, the lone drama remaining hinged on Marshon Brooks slipping to the Celtics pick at #25. We both went nuts when Stern announced the Celtics had actually picked Marshon, because that sort of thing never happens. New England home teams never pick the guy you want. Sure enough, as Mikey fielded excited phone calls, Andy Katz dumped on our parade and explained a deal of Brooks for JaJuan Johnson, taken two picks later by New Jersey. Our hometown hero had been dealt, and the suckdom continued.

Stay tuned…

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8 Pound 6 Ounces Colton, Don’t Even Know a Word Yet

June 23, 2011

DISCLAIMER: This is for the people who wrote on my facebook wall yesterday. If you didn’t, aside from sucking, just stop reading now. You don’t deserve this particular blog post.

DISCLAIMER #2: Even if you read this, it makes almost no sense. It’s like part fiction, part biography, part delusions of grandeur. Basically, it’s a lot like Obama’s book, “Audacity of Hope.” Only he was serious.

So in the past, I became notorious for my personalized facebook birthday-wall-post-thank-you’s. Consistently banging out a hundred plus messages like it was just a walk in the park. Yesterday, however, I think my wall completely altered facebook forever. My computer ran slowly, I struggled to follow my fantasy baseball team, and facebook creeping came to a near-screeching halt as every five to seven minutes someone else dropped some love on my digital canvas. Sure, Verizon has been having some trouble in my area, but I think the reason behind this slowdown is obvious. Yesterday, I put up numbers that Wilt Chamberlain could be proud of. Clearly, it’s not every day I’m born. In fact, yesterday is the only day I celebrate my birth. If you missed the event, or took part and are suffering from post-partem depression, calm down, it’s only 364 short days until the next time you get to write on my wall. In between, our great country will celebrate its own birth, Jesus’ birth, George Washington’s birth, and Marisa Miller’s birth. Now I’m not saying my birth is nearly as important as all of those (with the exception of maybe G.W.), but none of those people or sovereign nations will write you a blog, either. So here we go…

If you thought anyone else would take the first spot in my birthday blog, you probably didn't know me well enough to write on my wall.

If you want to know how I came to be, I’ll forward you to the post John MacKinnon left on my wall. While it basically caused me to stare at my computer screen unblinking for about 6 minutes, it’s unfortunately most likely pretty accurate. Now that we’ve reached the point where I know I was not, in fact, dropped on the doorstep by storks, left in a basket by the Nile like Moses, or birthed through the head of Zeus like Athena, we can move on to the important things. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard about those people who can recall details from every single day of their lives, but I’m not one of them. I can only assume the thoughts going through my head while I was chilling in the womb.

For one thing, I obviously decided I wanted a Y chromosome. Can’t even imagine being a girl. Constantly persecuted for my good looks. Switching best friends every month: depending on who got hotter than me, or started a menial conflict over a guy. Spending potential alcohol money on fake nails, tans, make-up and shoes. Draining my dad’s bank account and going on a Eurotrip for “culture” that doesn’t extend itself beyond the pot in Amsterdam, the clothes in Italy, the sex in France and the stalking of Prince Harry in London. Basically, after two girls, my dad hit the jackpot with me.

Don't let that above paragraph make you think I'm not grateful for XX chromosomes like Leeann Tweeden...

After diving into the world feet first, because that’s how ballers do, I thought I’d play a little joke on everyone and fake a suicide by wrapping the umbilical cord around my neck. Talk about your all-time backfire. Everyone started freaking out and screaming and stuff. Obviously, my sense of comedic timing has improved tenfold since this original stunt, which may or may not be true for the purposes of storytelling. For the first couple years of my life, I just chilled out, mowing Gerber and soiling myself like it was going out of style. Pretty soon I started forming memories, an addiction to David the Gnome, the WWF, baseball (specifically, the Red Sox) and Strawberry Milk. This all built up to my first grade birthday party. My dad made toys for a living so he got 20, seven year olds into the company meeting room where we rated the new action figure line with a 🙂 😦 or :-/ face. I’m not sure what you call that last face, but I call it the uneasy/constipated face, depending on my mood. After some smiles, frowns and constipations, the party favors of GI Joes and Transformers were given out. My dad basically cemented my legacy as the coolest birthday host until Billy Madison started throwing his blowouts.

Sometime after this glorious first grade banger, I became disenfranchised with the whole birthday party concept. Perhaps it was due to the stretch from 3rd grade on when I stopped having parties thrown for me because of Little League All Stars, having two older sisters, and only two parents capable of getting us everywhere. The summer birthday is an amazing thing, but it does not lend itself to easy elementary school celebrations. The last day of school rarely made it to June 22, unless there were a bunch of snow days. Thus, teachers never started the day singing to me, giving me gold stars, hoodsie cups and letting me make friendship bracelets all day like the rest of the kids born between September and early June. From that point on the extent of my birthday celebration was a Wiffle ball game in the backyard while my dad grilled meat and my mom kept the pink lemonade flowing like it ain’t no thing. Sure, I never threw wild pool parties with wet t-shirt contests and chicken fight contests, that’s what ASU is for, but I was happy raking home runs into my driveway.

ASU absolutely has to be fake life. Like this does not happen...

Even my 21st birthday started off as tame as possible. When it came time to choose my stomping grounds, I selected the bar that has treated me so kindly for the two years prior to my legality. Some people turn 21 and forget about the little people, make new friends who can go to the cool bars and ditch everything else. I paid homage to the old reliable J Tree by having my party there. Even though the original plan involved going after midnight so I could use my real ID, people got drunk and antsy and I decided I’d just use the Maine, 23 year-old version of myself one last time. After eight of my friends got kicked out of the bar in three distinct incidents, the next thing I knew I was being pulled from a cab and thrown to the ground. Apparently the poor townie whose friends took her to JTree for her bachelorette party told her fiancee to meet up with them?! Who knew…

Which brings us to present day. While I may never forgive my family for the toys and riches I missed out on from all those lost childhood birthdays, I take solace in the fact that I’m not one of those painfully annoying people who start birthday countdowns, create entire weekend agendas mapping out each afternoon and night using adjectives like: “sloshed” “Shwasted” “wasteyfaced” or even the repugnant combination, “shwastyfaced.” After all that self-promotion, how can anybody expect people to actually care that their day meant anything at all. I guess not everyone can rely on great friends to flood their wall all day with well wishes without that kind of promotion. If you read this post until now, you truly earned this thank you. And this…

Just wouldn't be a birthday blog without Rosie Jones. PS- googling her and finding anything with clothes on is getting tougher and tougher. It's amazing what the Revolver has done for her career.

 

 

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Stanley Cup Finals Game 7 Need-to-Know

June 15, 2011

By now, you’ve been gripped by the Stanley Cup finals if you’re living in New England and have a pulse. Growing up a New England sports fan, I root for every hometown team, and the Bruins have always been “The Thing” in the Fantastic 4. You know about them, but they don’t really fit in, they don’t have a very cool power (other than being turned into a human rock), and the other three steal most of the glory. This year, though, the Bruins are the team who is making the magical playoff run. Much like the Patriots of ’01, the Celtics of ’08 or even the Red Sox of ’04 and ’07, the region has shifted all of its focus to a foreign place in June: the ice. I won’t sit here and berate fans who just recently jumped on the bandwagon. I myself am a pink hat Bruin fan. However, I started watching in the first round of the playoffs and have watched every game since (except for the game 7 against Tampa Bay when I was in a Brooklyn Law apartment complex with no Versus, and had to watch on ESPN gametracker). While the Red Sox are like a wife, the Celtics are like a steady girlfriend, and the Patriots are like that smoking hot hook-up you get on weekends all the time, the Bruins, in these playoffs, have been my one night stand. I hardly knew more than their names before the playoffs started, and after these playoffs I’ll go right back to my wife, but for this one time, I’m cheating, and fully invested in the moment. So, since I know more about sports than you, I’ll tell you all you need to know about this series, from the plots to the players, as we head into tonight’s deciding game 7 (oh, and here’s a potential one night if I had to cheat on my hypothetical wife).

Diora Baird: You remember her from when she flopped onto the bed in the opening Wedding Crashers montage. Like I said, amazing one night stand.

HOME ICE ADVANTAGE:

In six games thus far in the series, the home team has won every game. The Bruins won their home games by a combined score of 17-3. Fortunately, the Canucks have looked far more vulnerable at home, with just a 5-2 goal advantage. Unfortunately, that means the Bs have scored just twice in three games north of the border. Fortunately, none of this makes any sense, the Bruins have been the clear-cut better team, and at some point, you figure one of those fluky one goal games will finally go in the Bruins favor. If the Bs can get an early lead tonight, look out. Roberto Luongo has been, in a word, a shit sandwich once he gives up one goal…

ROBERTO LUONGO

The Italian-Canadian sleezeball has looked like Swiss cheese in Boston, and a block of Cheddar in Vancouver. Okay, so I’m not sure if the block of cheddar analogy made sense, but go with it. The hilarious part is after he gave up 12 goals in two games, he won 1-0 in game 5 and ripped Tim Thomas for the goal he allowed, saying “it would have been an easy save for me.” The Bruins came out in game 6 and scored 3 goals in 8 minutes to chase Luongo to the bench. I would have said showers, but he didn’t have enough time on the ice to require more than an Axe body spray. Look for Boston to come out shooting pucks like Darryl Strawberry’s baseball career: fast, high and on the short (glove) side.

TIM THOMAS

He’s already the Conn Smythe winner for MVP of the Stanley Cup Finals. No, you didn’t miss that award ceremony, because it’s given out tonight, but regardless of who wins game 7, Thomas has it locked up. His numbers, while not quite historic, have been heroic. Like Emmanuelle Chriqui at a bar, Thomas has turned away everything that’s come flying at him. It’s not simply the shots he’s turned aside, but the amount of games he almost single-handedly won the Bruins. Even as their play was shoddy in front of him, Thomas stood on his head to keep games close, or leads in hand. He has made Luongo look foolish on the opposite end of the ice all series long, and if the sports Gods do exist, the right man in net will hoist Lord Stanley’s Cup as well.

It's just been far too long since Emmanuelle has been featured on the Revolver.

THE BITE SEEN ‘ROUND THE WORLD (just not in NHL headquarters)

In Game One, Alexandre Burrows got in a scuffle with Patrice Bergeron and while a ref held them back, he bit Bergeron’s finger. Yes, like a toddler bitch with no other thoughts, he BIT him. While a penalty was called for the bite, the league offices took no action in suspending Burrows. In the very next game, with Burrows playing, Canucks henchman Max LaPierre taunted Bergeron by poking his fingers in his face. Then, Burrows scored the game-winner in Overtime, and the shit had officially hit the fan. It didn’t help in Boston that his name is spelled French-ly and that hockey fans all hate Montreal, French-Canadians, and the French in general. This bite only set off the start of the hatred developed between these two teams.

HORTON HEARS A WHO, SEES STARS

In game three, with all the suspense leading up to how the Bruins would retaliate against the girly, classless antics of the Canucks. Then, minutes in, it was the Canucks who leveled Bruins first-line forward Nathan Horton with a cheapshot two strides after a pass with his head down. Horton lying on the ground with his arm frozen upright like a full mailbox, was out cold: and out for the series. After that hit, the Bs went on to score 12 goals in two wins at home to send the series back for game 5. As I already discussed the results in games 5 and 6 for each home team, it brings us to game 7.

THE SEDIN TWINS VS. THE NOSE FACED KILLAH

Since I can’t tell these particular rare breed of ginger twins apart, I’ll just say the Swedish Twins. Since that makes everyone think of two hot blonde chicks you’d dream about in a menage… I’m sorry. Basically, all you need to know about the Sedins can be summed up by this video: 

I mean, this dude just gets punked, in the face, six separate times, without doing anything. Just standing there like someone from a Nordic country who has never been in a fight before. Apparently Sedin is the Norse God of bitch, who knew? Meanwhile, the guy punching him repeatedly, Brad Marchand, has made a name for himself in this series. He’s even taken on one of the greatest monikers in recent sports nickname memory: The Nose Faced Killah (upside down Wu Tang logo making an “M” and all). With nine goals, and seven assists in these playoffs, Marchand has also been the lead agitator for the Bruins. Pissing off the other team is a trait not to be overlooked. He netted the first goal of the Game 6 blowout when he sniped Luongo’s glove-side and the rout was on.

Straight up gangster.

FINAL PREDICTION:

Because what’s the point of all this information without me making a bold prediction. Well, as I said, the Bruins have soundly outplayed Vancouver throughout this series, and without some bad bounces and breaks, could have already won the cup with multiple one-goal games. It says here, though, that tonight the Bs get the monkey off their backs and Canuck the shit out of Vancouver. 4-1 final with Thomas winning MVP honors, obviously, and the Sedins left to hold each other sobbing in solace during a post-game shower.

Stay tuned…