Thursday, April 03, 2008


So, yeah. I'm here. I'm alive. Every month, I think I'm going to update this thing more. Then I slack. I suck. Right now, I'm on my couch, enjoying the Lightning-Capitals game in sparkling high definition. Not even Joe Beninati could screw this night up.

Random thoughts on things that have already happened or are about to happen. Feel free to follow along...
  • Michigan is the best college hockey team I've seen as we head into the Frozen Four. North Dakota didn't play terribly well in the Midwest Regional, and I'm not confident in their chances. Boston College is fast, and their goalie doesn't appear easily rattled. Frankly, I'm not a huge Notre Dame fan, meaning they'll probably wax Michigan in the semifinals.
  • Despite all the controversy, the NCAA Selection Committee did a good job. The actual selections were made for them, as they are obligated to follow the stringent criteria. The committee didn't pick Wisconsin. The system did. The only decision the committee made that could be fairly criticized was their call to protect the top two national seeds by not making them play in regionals featuring host schools. The Colorado Springs and Madison regionals had to take their host teams (CC and Wisconsin), and the committee was right to send Michigan and Miami out east to neutral regionals. Here's hoping future selection committees follow that precedent.
  • Please, Washington, make the NHL playoffs. And knock out someone not named "Carolina". If Boston or Philadelphia end up golfing next week, we're all winners. For that matter, Ottawa is practically useless with how they've been playing.
  • I was hoping that fun, young, exuberant Edmonton team would make it out West. It's a longshot, but it would be cool as hell to see Chicago make it. I'm not anti-Nashville, but they've yet to show me much in the postseason, despite having home-ice advantage a couple times.
  • The NCAA Basketball Tournament can't afford to be boring. Basketball is just not a terribly exciting sport, and the tournament - no matter the tradition - needs some compelling storylines in order to keep the viewers around. This tournament now lacks that. No one is going to care about an all-favorite Final Four, especially when it includes traditional powers like UCLA, North Carolina, and Kansas. Memphis is the only one of the bunch that can claim to be an underdog, and it's only by default because they're from a smaller conference.
  • Wisconsin's shooting woes might have blown the best chance they'll have at the Final Four under Bo Ryan. Great coach, but the style he coaches leaves the team really prone to long shooting slumps that can cost them big games. Strangely enough, when those shooting slumps happen, it seems to have a real impact on the team's normally strong free-throw shooting.
  • I couldn't agree more with Michael David Smith's take on the NFL's attempt to stop the trend of players letting their hair hang out of their helmets. This is petty, stupid, and could be seen by the oversensitive crowd as being racist. I have no problem with the NFL going so far as to regulate the length of a player's socks, or the color of their shoes. That's part of a uniform. Hair is not part of a uniform. This isn't a restaurant, where problems can be had by someone letting their hair hang out and fly around everywhere. People who care about the length of players' hair have entirely too much time on their hands.
  • Chris Henry is in trouble again. Shocking. This time, it cost him his job in Cincinnati, and it's worth noting it's likely to cost him his NFL career. Words cannot describe how sad it is to see someone waste their gifts because they're too stupid to stay out of trouble.
  • The Phoenix Suns were widely criticized for making the trade for Shaquille O'Neal. Well, now that Shawn Marion has shut it down for the year in Miami, and O'Neal is more and more of a fit in Phoenix's wide-open attack, the trade doesn't look so stupid. The race for eighth in the West is intriguing, with Dallas suddenly fighting for a spot against Denver and Golden State. Denver is probably the least likely of the three to make it when you consider how often they get blown out (something like 15 losses by double-digits). However, they have great talent, and Dallas is reeling with Dirk Nowitzki out. Golden State is simply the most exciting team in the sport, and one has to hope they make it. In the East, nobody cares. Just like pretty much every year.
  • Baseball is underway. No major stories yet, though it's nice to see teams like Tampa Bay and Washington off to good starts. However, it's just too early to tell if those teams can sustain anything positive. I think it'll be interesting to see how the National League races develop. The Mets are hardly a slam-dunk to win the East, with Philadelphia and Atlanta both potential contenders. The Nationals would like to think they can win, but I don't see them hitting enough. In the Central, everyone is picking the Cubs, but it's as if they forgot how long Milwaukee held the lead in the division last year. It's not like the Brewers are going to disappear, even if their manager is a bit of an idiot.
NON-SPORTS WARNING...Is this really a surprise? Seriously. How could anyone think this is a big deal? At this point, the Clintons are going to have to steal the nomination from Obama. I wouldn't put it past them, but that's what it will take. At this stage, he's winning the delegate battle, the fundraising battle, and he has all the momentum. Hillary should play it smart, take a potential spot as the vice president on the ticket (because that would be a sure victory, no matter who McCain chooses as a running mate), and stop acting as if she has a good chance to win the nomination (unless Camp Clinton already has a plan in place to steal it).

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