Monthly Archives: January 2009

Superbowl 43

I never thought I would say it but the Cardinals are in the Superbowl.  How odd is that?  No one saw that coming but for the dozen or so schlubs that put $20 on them in Vegas, nice job.

I suppose I’ll be rooting for the underdog because I really have nothing vested in this game.  I don’t dislike or like either team.  Pittsburgh is a great team with a kick ass defense and Arizona is just a good story.

I suppose I’ll just root for a good, competitive game.  Hopefully Kurt Warner will dip into the fountain of youth one more time and air it out Rams style.  That would make for a very interesting game.

Unfortunately I think Pittsburgh is just too tough.  The defense will dismantle what ground game the Cardinals do have.  This will leave Kurt and the Cardinal offense playing catch up most of the day.  Kurt will get sacked and throw some picks but I also think he will hook up with his receivers downfield.

The biggest key of the day is the Pittsburgh offense.  If they can execute a balanced attack, grab a quick lead and keep Warner off of the field they could win pretty handily.  If the Cardinal D gets behind early they will have to start taking chances.  This could allow Ben to open up the offense.

The fun part of this game too are the two young coaches.  I think highly of both of these guys.  They are great coaches with a great approach to the game.  Tomlin’s guys didn’t miss a step in the transition from Cowher to him.  Wisenhunt took over a team from Green that was in disarray and turned it into and NFC Champion. 

My prediction – Pittsburgh 28 Arizona 16

MVP – Pitt QB Big Ben

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

Now Entering…The Dead Zone

There is no greater time for a sports fan than the time between Labor Day and mid-February.

You have the MLB pennant races, playoffs and World Series.  You have the College and Professional football seasons, bowl games and Superbowl.  The NBA and NHL begin their seasons while NASCAR, golf and tennis finish theirs.  It is almost a sports overload but most avid sporting fans will call it the best time of the year.

However we are entering the time of year some have dubbed “The Sports Dead Zone”.  That time runs from the conclusion of the Superbowl/Daytona 500 until Opening Day of Baseball.  There is no football talk other than free agent signings and pre-draft.  Baseball is in spring training and the newness of that wears off pretty quickly.  Hockey and Basketball are in their “mid-seasons” and doesn’t get exciting again until the playoff brackets start forming in late-March/early-April.  The most excitement we have at this time is College basketball conference tournaments and March Madness.

But if you are the casual sports fan the College BBall Tourney only matters if you are in a pool.  If your pool gets whacked and/or your alma mater bites the dust most people write March Madness off.  The best ratings for the NCAA Tourney are the opening weekend (people tune in hoping for #13 thru #16 upsets) and the Final 4.  Not too mention if you aren’t much of a gambler and don’t follow college sports you really don’t care period.

I am here to offer up a sort of “Survival Guide” for the sports fan that has to endure “The Dead Zone”.  Here are a few of my suggestions.

#1 Quality TV.  Lost, 24, Nip/Tuck, The Closer, Life on Mars, Heroes, Survivor, American Idol and Burn Notice have begun or are beginning new seasons (some in mid-season).  I watch a few of these and a couple of other shows.  If you haven’t checked out some of these shows do so.  It will help pass the time.

#2 DVD Time.  There are plenty of movies and TVseries that have come out and are coming out that you should check out.  Dark Knight, Step Brothers, The House Bunny, Hancock, Kung Fu Panda, Get Smart, Indiana Jones, Ironman, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Deception and Harold and Kumar 2 are all worth renting.  Whether it is stupid comedy, drama or action there are a lot of choices out there right now.  Grab some popcorn, plop in the couch and enjoy.

#3 Nights Out.  Now guys you didn’t think women wouldn’t notice this down time.  Of course they notice and they are going to be on you like a fat kid on a cupcake.  The best thing to do is take them out for good food and entertainment.  However, don’t get suckered into the sushi, wine bar and art film black hole.  If you fall into this your friends may take your man card.  It depends where you live obviously but in KC how about some prime rib or baby back at Jack Stack, a few drinks over at the Power and Light Station and finish off with some smooth Jazz at Jardines.  Chicago guys!  How about taking the lady for some steak and seafood at Smith and Wollensky followed by some drinks at the Redhead Piano Bar.  Tampa Bay guys should grab the lady and hit an early dinner at Aquaknox followed by some bar hopping in Ybor City.  Some recommendations there might be taking the woman for some drinks and good music at Caribe, walk to one of the many cigar shops in Ybor, get a smooth Dominican and finish it off with a martini at Lit Cigar Lounge.  And, if your night continues to go well, head over to the Redington Beaches for a sunset stroll and “Grunion Run”.  Gentlemen there are plenty of ways to show our ladies we care this time of year.  Trust me, put forth the effort now and it you’ll be good to go well into baseball season.  😉  

#4 Family Time.  Now if you’re lucky like me most of the birthdays and other events like anniversaries fall in this time period.  Let’s face it.  Nothing is worse than the lady making plans for the both of you to go to your niece’s 4th birthday the same day the Yankees and Red Sox open a 3 game set in Fenway.  Bite the bullet now guys.  Spend as much time with your woman and her family for the next 10 weeks.  Go out to dinners, offer to have them over and bestow upon them gifts.  Now some days you will never get out of like Mother’s Day, Easter and significant birthdays, but with proper planning you can lessen the committment you would otherwise have to make during our sports “In-Season”.  Offer to get married on Valentines Day.  You will appear to be the romantic but you are at the height of “The Dead Zone”.  Having an anniversary the same weekend as the NFL Draft, an important baseball series or the beginning of the NFL season can put undo stress on the marriage.  Another helpful hint is when the woman wants to start a family hem and haw until June/July and then start having mad, crazy sex with her.  This will guarantee a Feb/March birth, thus keeping you free around “Sports Time”.  WARNING:  Do not engage in careless sex during “The Dead Zone” period.  You run the risk of an Oct/Nov birth thus conflicting with events like the World Series and Thanksgiving football.  Don’t be silly, wrap your willy.

#5 Vacation Time.  It is very tempting for your significant other to encourage summer vacations because the kids are out of school.  I do not recommend this course of action.  Do you really want to be stuck on some beach when the White Sox play the Cubs?  Do you really want to be playing with your kids in a pool during the final round of the British Open?  Of course not.  You have two options here guys.  You have a very small window during Christmas break when the sports world is relatively idol.  It is usually week 17 of the NFL so if you know your teams have their spot sewn up you can make it a holiday vacation for the family.  However, most playoff spots were up for grabs going into the last week.  If this is the case and your teams will be battling into the final week use your best judgement and wait until “Dead Zone” time.  Most kids spring breaks are during this time so things should work out.  Most government checks/rebates etc. come back to us around this time too (for early filers) so what a perfect time to wisk the wife and kids away somewhere nice.  Florida is nice this time of year as is Arizona.  Do you get where I am going with this?  That’s right, Spring Training.  Like an Alzheimer’s patient you will forget that the Boston Red Sox play ball in Fort Myers during this time.  Ooooops, is that the Cleveland Indians bus outside their Winter Haven facility?  You are in!  Do the family stuff and then say, “Honey, you chill out by the pool and I’ll take little Billy to a ball game.”  Bonus sports is never a bad thing if you plan it out just right.

In conclusion, this is our time to shine to the most important people in our lives.  Be smart about it and use your time wisely.  “The Dead Zone” only lasts about 10 weeks so take advantage, rest up, catch up and prepare for the seasons ahead.

Leave a comment

Filed under Baseball, Basketball, College Sports, Football, Hockey

The Boldin Not Beautiful

The AFC and NFC Championship games were incredibly entertaining.  One game, pure power and defense and the other game an air assault.  There were so many great stories from these 4 teams.  Rookie QB Joe Flacco for the Ravens, McNabb playing in what could be his last game for the Eagles, the Steeler D laying the smack down and old man Warner and the Philly Special.  It really was a beautiful weekend for pro football fans. 

Despite all the beauty that is NFL Conference Championship, there was something that really messed with my enjoyment of the games.  It happened in the 2nd half of the Card-Eagle game when Philly was getting back into the game.  They grabbed a 1 point lead and it looked as if Arizona might go down.  They had absolutely no momentum at this point. 

The camera pans over to Anquan Boldin and he is chewing out offensive coordinator Todd Haley in the beginning part of what turned out to be the winning drive.  Players were pulling him back but he just kept after Todd and Todd shot a few choice words back.  Like most people at home we were wondering what the hell was going on. 

Todd was interviewed this morning on AM1000 in Chicago and said he wasn’t a “players coach” kind of guy and it was a matter of a couple of guys losing their cool. Anquan wanted to be on the field and that is fine.  That is the attitude you want out of a guy making the money he makes.  However, there is a time and a place for the conversation they had and on the field during a key drive wasn’t it.  But both guys get the blame for that.  No doubt both men lost their cool. 

Even though Anquan gets off the hook for the verbal disagreement I can’t let him go for happened after the game ended.  The Cards win the NFC Championship at home and Quan makes the decision to run from the field to the locker room, clean his locker out and go home.  In my opinion that was the wrong thing to do.  I don’t care how important you think you are.  You are a member of a team and you win or lose with that team.  He should have been on that field with Fitz, Kurt and the rest of the team.  

Malcontent receivers are no stranger to the Cards OC as he has dealt with the likes of Keyshawn Johnson, David Terrell and T.O. as a position coach.  What happened Sunday defied sports logic.  Anquan made himself look like an ass to a whole nation of football fans.  And, more importantly, a sea of GMs considering acquiring his talents for the 2009-10 season.   

Anquan has had issues with the franchise dating back to August when he demanded a trade.  He has 3 year left on a 4 year deal and still wants to be traded.  I can’t see how the Cards will say no.  My only hope is they send the big cry baby to Detroit.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football, Uncategorized

Return of the Puck Bunny

Hot women and hockey seem to go hand in hand.  As I was sitting center ice for the Blackhawks v. Sabres game I couldn’t get over all of the hot women at the game.  I’m a huge fan…of the sport and the women.  Enjoy!

rachelhunterstoll

I am not sure how Rod Stewart ever landed this amazing piece of ass (probably money but any how) but he blew it and Jarrett Stoll is hitting it now.  Way to nab the cougar Stoll.

redwingsfanwithstick

A random Red Wings babe looking very hot.  But I do think this is the most air brushed photo in the history of air brushing photos.

kellycarlsondomi

Rumour has it this Nip/Tuck hotty is dating Tie Domi.  I have never, ever been a fan of Domi but I have to give him props for this.

bruinsgirls1

You don’t have to wonder why these Bruins hotties are happy.  They have the best team in the East.

campohabs2

Habs fan Ms. Campo gets a little cheeky with the BPD crowd.

Have a great night!

Leave a comment

Filed under Hockey

NFL Championship Weekend

On the AFC side you have a classic matchup of two teams that don’t like each other very much.  Ravens v. Steelers.  Defense v. Defense.  This one is going to get muddy and bloody.  On the other hand you have an improbable #4 v. #6 seed.  The old time rivals of Eagles v. Cardinals.  Does Kurt Warner pull another rabbit out of his hat or does the hot D.McNabb keep it going?

BALTIMORE V. PITTSBURGH

ravensteelers

The Pittsburgh Steelers have eeked out two wins against the Ravens this season.  It is now that crucial third game that most teams that won the first two don’t like.  However teams that have beaten another division foe twice in the regular season have met that team 18 times in the NFL postseason. The 2-0 teams have won that third meeting 11 times. 

The Baltimore Ravens are the OLD Cleveland Browns so some of the older players remember this rivalry.  Cleveland v. Pittsburgh is a great AFC rivalry.  The Rooney and Modell clans certainly remember.  However, the Ravens have their own identity and the Steelers have developed a great rivalry with Baltimore. 

I look for this game to be really tight.  I would also be surprised if either team broke 20 points this weekend.  The difference could be Joe Flacco who has won 2 playoff games, more than any rookie QB in NFL history.  Can he get that third on the road in Pittsburgh? 

My prediction is Pittsburgh wins a game on a late field goal.  Both QBs will struggle against good defenses.  Final score: Pittsburgh 16 Baltimore 13.

PHILADELPHIA V. ARIZONA

phillyarizona

The Cardinals have been around since 1920.  The Eagles have been around since 1933.  They have a 75 year history of playing one another.  It is a rivalry that dates back almost as far as Green Bay v. Chicago or the NY Giants v. Washington Redskins.  In 1947 the Cardinals won their last championship against the Philadelphia Eagles.  In 1948 the Eagles win the championship against the Cardinals. 

The meeting hasn’t been as significant since the Cardinals left Chicago/St. Louis, but it is still a good one.  And now it is our NFC championship game.  No one is surprised (even with the #6 seeding) that the Eagles are in the NFC championship game.  They have been in this game 5 times since 2001.  Reid and company have been very good team this decade and lack only one thing, the Lombardi Trophy.

The Cardinals stand in their way and they are truly a mystery.  They finished 9-7, 6-0 versus their own weak division and 3-7 against the rest of the league.  No one expected them to do much.  No one gave them a chance at home against a hot, young Atlanta team but they won.  Kurt Warner looked like the old Kurt Warner.  He is having a blast throwing to Arizona’s big three of Fitzgerald, Boldin and Breaston.  The Cards are starting to run the ball too with Hightower and Edge.  The defense is also making statements by blitzing, hitting hard and getting turnovers.  Just ask Jake Delhomme who was obviously confused by their schemes.  He was rushed early and often and turned the ball over 5 times.

In the Eagles v. Cards match up early in the year Philadelphia destroyed Arizona by 28 points.  It wasn’t much of a game.  This time around could be a little different.  Arizona is at home.  Arizona is running much better than they did in November.  They are also playing good defense.  For Philadelphia, the Eagles have been lucky but they have also been good.  And, to win championships in this league you have to be both lucky and good.  McNabb is playing loose right now.  He beat the defending champs in adverse conditions on Sunday.  When McNabb is a happy camper and Westbrook is healthy, Philly is tough to beat.

My prediction is Arizona and Kurt Warner will out gun McNabb and company.  It should be a very entertaining game.  I look for both team’s defenses to dial it down a notch after tremendous efforts against Carolina and NY.  Final score: Arizona 28  Philadelphia 24.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

Bears Must Be Aggressive in Free Agent Market to Win in 2009

The Chicago Bears were a disappointment this season.  I don’t think any Chicago Bears fan would think otherwise.  They are a mediocre team.  They were in 2007 and were again in 2008.  Their window for any sort of a championship run is closing fast and 2009 is probably their last opportunity for a while to come.  Now I am not a huge believer in the “Lovie” philosophy of football but for the most part, the talent is there.  So, what is it the Bears have to do this off-season.

The Bears have to be willing to part with some of their veterans (some of them fan favorites) and dive head first into the free agent market.  Here are my proposals.

OUT – QB Rex Grossman     IN – QB Kurt Warner

Yes, I know Kurt is ancient but we are trying to win right now.  Kurt would give us the leadership and arm to move the offense vertically.  He gives automatic respect to the passing game.  I do like Kyle but more as a back up in the NFL.  Rex Grossman is gone.  Rex is incredibly disappointing but I think under the right system or coach he could become a good NFL QB.  Look for him to wind up a back up in Miami or Tampa Bay.

OUT – WR Marty Booker, Rashied Davis     IN – WR Devry Henderson, Amani Toomer

Our biggest problem was we had no one to throw the football too.  Marty who was a very good NFL WR for years was brutal in 08.  Rashied also took a huge step back after a good 06-07.  You could bring Superman in to QB but if the Bears don’t have someone to throw to it won’t matter.  Devry is a legit downfield WR.  He is much more fluid and has better hands than Devin.  Devry would be my new No. 1.  Amani is older but continues to produce an I think he could do that for a season or two with the Chicago Bears.  For Warner it would be like having Isaac Bruce back.  Devin would be demoted to 3rd/slot reciever duties where I think he could do the most damage blowing up the seam.

OUT – RB Adrian Petersen     IN – RB Dominic Rhodes

I keep hearing how great Adrian is at special teams but you can’t hold a RB position on a team just because you are a good special teamer.  You need to be able to contribute behind the QB and he doesn’t.  They need to find a dependable guy to play behind Forte or the young kid is going to get killed.  The perfect guy just might be Dominic Rhodes.  He had a combined 900 yards total offense and 9 TDs last season.  He is an above average reciever and that is good for a Kurt Warner who loves to include the RB in the passing game.  He might also be able to tutor 3rd string RB Garrett Wole, a player of similar size.

OUT – DL Dusty Dvorczek     IN – DL Shaun Cody

It is obvious to me the Bears need big, athletic bodies in the middle.  The Bears line improved when Anthony Adams started along side Tommie Harris.  We need more beef to rotate in the middle and 25 year old Shaun Cody would work out well.  Not too mention Marinelli is going to be the DL coach and Cody played for Detroit.  He would replace the often injured Dusty Dvorczek.  I like Dusty but if you can’t stay healthy there just isn’t a spot for you.  Tommie Harris would come in on passing downs only until further notice.

IN – DB Jermaine Phillips, Phillip Buchanon     OUT – DB Mike Brown, Nate Vasher

Mike Brown is such an important part of this defense it is hard to discard him.  However the Bears need to move on.  The same goes for Vasher.  Since getting the big contract the rewards have been few and the injuries many.  Vasher is under contract so the Bears might get a 3rd Round pick for him.  Phillips and Buchanon both come from the Monte Kiffin defensive scheme which means they should understand our scheme.  The Bear DBs looked lost and times this season.  If the Bears continue to play the Tampa D as a base philosophy they need guys that understand it.  

I think these moves can make the team better and help us contend short-term.  Now this post doesn’t include the NFL Draft and I’ll begin addressing those needs then.  The focus of the 2009 Draft will need to be on the offensive line, defensive line, weak side linebacker and quarterback postions in the 2009 draft.

Leave a comment

Filed under Football

College Football’s Swan Song

This is it.  Florida v. Oklahoma.  Tebow v. Bradford.  This should be a great game.  This game is a toss up.  Both teams are on fire.  Prediction?  Florida Gators 35 Oklahoma Sooners 31.  I can’t wait.  In closing please enjoy our final edition of college football hotties 2008-09.  Enjoy the game tonight.

lsuawesomeness

LSU is back.  Nice win in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl.  GT was blown off the field.

iowagirl22

What can I say?  I have a spot in my heart for Hawkeye girls.  Besides, got to give props to Iowa for being the only Big10 team to get a W in bowl season.

uscspank

In the end it was ALL USC.  Penn State just didn’t have the talent or speed to stick with them.  And yes, that pun was intended.

footballcheerducks

The Ducks have a very fine cheerleading squad and the football team had an equally fine effort over OSU in the Holiday Bowl.  PAC10 flexing their muscle this bowl season.

kentuckycheerteam

The Wildcat girls must have enjoyed that victory over ECU in the Liberty Bowl.  Kentucky football is back!

texashotties

Now we know why their horns are long.  OK, that was bad but their effort against Ohio State wasn’t.  Probably one of the better games of the bowl season.

wvugirls

We haven’t had a chance to showcase the cuties at WVU this season but after that exciting win v. UNC, you get your day in the sun.

missrebels

Upset alert!  Ole Miss beats down on Texas Tech.  Wow!  What a game if you like offense.  Watch out for Ole Miss in 2009.

arizonawildcat1

Arizona’s Kara (Tempe12.com) had to be delighted with a different upset.  How about Arizona over heavily favored BYU?  Very few people saw this coming, although I think most of us would see Kara coming.

Leave a comment

Filed under College Sports, Other