11.22.12

Battier Vs. Dunleavy : Perhaps History’s Dullest War Of Words

Posted in Basketball at 5:19 pm by

Miami F / karaoke enthusiast Shane Battier claims he there’s no one in the NBA who could challenge him at “Jeopardy”.  Bucks F Mike Dunleavy (above) begs to differ, telling Fox Sports’ Chris Thomasson, “He’s a religion major. I’m a history major, and I’ve read a lot of books. I’ve read a lot of stuff.’’  Yes, I’m sure you’re right up there with this guy.

I don’t know if he could beat Duke players,’’ said Dunleavy, a Milwaukee forward who had 16 points and four rebounds to Battier’s no points and seven boards in a 113-106 overtime loss to the Heat. “He probably could beat everybody else. I don’t think he could beat me. … I think what he meant to say is (Battier) can beat any player in the NBA besides any who went to Duke. I think Grant (Hill, also a Duke alum) could give him a run for his money.’’

“Michael knows better,’’ Battier said. “I’m a little disappointed in him saying that. … I’m ready any time, any place. Tell Dunleavy, tell Grant Hill, you know where to find me. Home or away, I don’t care. He’s a smart guy,’’ Battier said of Dunleavy. “He’s bright. He’s not going to get blown out of the water. But where I get him is in culture. Pop culture. Edge: Battier. I have a pulse of the people that most NBA players lack. Grant would be very good, but with pop culture and random factoids, I got him.’’

11.21.12

Shea Hillenbrand’s Post-Baseball Attitude Adjustment

Posted in Baseball at 11:51 pm by

After losing skipper John Farrell to Boston, Toronto rehired former manager John Gibbons earlier this week, a slightly surprising move given the later’s highly publicized tifts with Shea Hillenbrand (above, left) and Ted Lilly. Hillenbrand, a onetime CSTB fixture / object of ridicule, tells the Toronto Star’s Brendan Kennedy that he’s no longer demonizing Gibbons.

“I think he handled the situation that we had very professionally and I didn’t handle it professionally at all,” said the father of three, who owns a ranch in Arizona and devotes most of his time these days to a foundation that uses baseball and animals to teach life lessons to at-risk youth.

“All I know is that during my time with him he was a really good manager and I think he did a really good job with what he had.”

Ironically, what Hillenbrand said made Gibbons such a great manager was how approachable and accessible he was. “I think John’s going to be a great addition to that ball club and he’s a great guy.”

Division III Ballhogs Rest Assured, Kobe Has Your Back

Posted in Basketball, College Spurts at 10:44 pm by

Reporter: Kobe, a college kid scored 138 points tonight and took over 100 shots …

Bryant: “Really? Wow. That’s impressive. That’s crazy. I don’t care what level you’re at. Scoring 138 points is pretty insane. How many 3s did he shoot? He must have been wearing the Mambas, man. Only Mambas have no conscious to shoot the ball like that.”

Reporter: If you did that, would people be celebrating you?

Bryant: “Would people be celebrating me if I scored 138 points? You know how it is, some people would, some people wouldn’t. They can all kiss my a– as I’m sure he feels the same way. If you score 138 points, you kind of have a license to tell people to f— off.” –  Dave McMenamin, Sulia.com

Consciousness, conscience, it’s all good. And full credit to Kobe for not saying, “who knew Paul Westhead Mike D’Antoni was coaching in Iowa?

Buehrle : Loria & Co. Are Liars

Posted in Baseball at 6:28 pm by

The thrill of being dumped on a contender might be outweighed by having to uproot a family (or abandon an important member) for P Mark Buerhle, who has reacted angrily to his widely-ridiculed trade to Toronto. The Sun-Sentinel’s Mike Bernadino provides excerpts from a written statement issued by the former Marlins starter  and his agent, Jeff Berry.

“I’m upset with how things turned out in Miami,” Buehrle said. “Just like the fans in South Florida, I was lied to on multiple occasions. But I’m putting it behind me and looking forward to moving on with my career.”

Marlins baseball czar Larry Beinfest, asked directly on a Monday conference call about reports of “verbal assurances” given to Reyes and Buehrle, said those didn’t come from him and were nothing he was privvy to.

“Throughout the recruiting process, the Marlins made repeated assurances about their long-term commitment to Mark and his family and their long-term commitment to building a winning tradition of Marlins baseball in the new stadium. This was demonstrated by their already completed signings of Ozzie, Heath Bell and Jose Reyes.

“At the same time, given the Marlins’ history, we were all certainly aware of and voiced concern about the lack of no-trade protection. This is unquestionably a business, and signing with the Marlins was a calculated risk. Mark held up his end of the bargain; unfortunately, the same can’t be said of the Marlins.”

11.20.12

Guy Who No Longer Stands To Inherit A Baseball Team : Trading Wright, Dickey Isn’t The Mets’ (Immediate) Plan

Posted in Baseball at 10:03 pm by

Calling recent reports that extensions for David Wright and R.A. Dickey are less than likely, “”some misconception in the marketplace about what’s going on,” Mets chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon told reporters Tuesday at a charity event that shopping either star isn’t the club’s intent.  For now, anyway, as Newsday’s Marc Carig transcribes :

“(Signing both to extensions is) the first preference; that has been the first preference,” Wilpon said. “Second preference is probably keep them and have them play out the season. Third preference would be to trade them. They’re both very important to the franchise, they’re both fan favorites, so we’d like to keep it that way.”

Wilpon declined to elaborate on why he believes trades are the least desirable option.

“We’re dealing in hypothetical now,” he said. “So I don’t want to go there. In terms of right now, the process is ongoing, and we want to get something done.”

The Mets exercised options to pay Wright $16 million and Dickey $5 million. But both are free agents after 2013, and if the Mets hang on to them only to let them walk, they’d be left with only draft picks as compensation.

Is That Tony La Russa’s Superior Managerial Insight In Your Pocket, Or Are You Just Glad To See Me?

Posted in Baseball, Video Games at 6:20 pm by

It took some doing, but I think Repoz finally found a Kickstarter project even lamer than this one.

The Evil Empire Just Got A Little More Evil

Posted in Baseball, Sports Journalism, Sports Radio, Sports TV, The Marketplace at 2:18 pm by

(Rupert Murdoch, shortly before learning Suzyn Waldman’s voicemail really wasn’t worth hacking into)

Seriously, was there no possible way James Dolan could’ve picked up a 1% stake, just for appearances?  With a move ESPN NY’s Wally Matthews considers a harbinger of the Steinbrenner family making their exit from baseball entirely, News Corp. has acquired a 49 percent share in the YES Network.  Aside from the likelihood of Louis C.K. being quizzed on “Centerstage”, this is probably not good news for anyone with, y’know, a soul.  From the New York Times’ Amy Chozick :

The media company said the YES Network’s current owners –Yankee Global Enterprises, Goldman Sachs and other investors — would reduce their ownership in the cable channel. The deal gives News Corporation the option to eventually increase its stake to 80 percent, with Yankee Global Enterprises, a holding company for the team, continuing to hold a minority stake.

News Corporation did not disclose the purchase price, but people familiar with the negotiations said it was based on a valuation of the channel at more than $3 billion, putting it at approximately $1.5 billion or more. The deal underscores the competitive and lucrative arena of television sports. The Los Angeles Dodgers were sold this year for $2.15 billion.

Paul Domowitch : Andy Reid’s Monday AM Translator

Posted in Gridiron at 12:22 am by

Philadelphia’s 31-6 defeat at the hands of Washington yesterday is unlikely to quell calls for the dismissal of Eagles head coach Andy Reid. This isn’t the first time Reid’s been in choppy waters, and given The Philadelphia Daily News’ Paul Domowitch’s three decades on the Eagles beat, who better to explain to us the difference between Reid’s postgame remarks and what he really meant to say.

Q: How do you avoid having your tenuous job security become a distraction for your team?

What Andy said: “Listen, you control what you can control. And that’s getting better as a football team. That’s where my emphasis is. Become a better coach and make sure I put my guys in the right position to make plays.”

What Andy meant: “I had hoped Jeffrey would address that by giving me a five-year contract extension, but he politely declined.”

Q: Are the problems with this team fixable?

What Andy said: “Yes, I believe it’s fixable. Like I said, we’ve got to eliminate the mistakes. It’s not (a lack of) effort or want-to. I don’t see that. I see guys pressing a little bit where they don’t need to press. Guys that have been very consistent players for us in the past are pressing just a bit. They want to do so well. They want to be that guy that makes that play.”

What Andy meant: “We’re as fixable as the Petraeus marriage.”

Q: Is there any scenario where you would step down?

What Andy said: “I’m standing in front of the team and telling them these are the things we need to do. One of which is to continue to battle. (To quit) would be a copout. That’s not how I see things. That’s not the way I’m wired.”

What Andy meant: “I’ve got 5 ½ million reasons to keep coaching this football team.”

11.19.12

Domenech : Nic Anelka Is An Imbecilic Coach-Killer

Posted in Football at 8:32 pm by

Striker Nicolas Anelka (above) found himself bounced from the French national side after telling manager Raymond Domenech, “go fuck yourself, you son of a whore” during intermission of a 2010 first round World Cup defeat to Mexico.  Anelka’s teammates responded by boycotting practice, an incident Domenech recalls in the forthcoming memoir, “Tout Seul”, with the following excerpts courtesy The Guardian :

In a book called Tout Seul (All Alone), to be published on Tuesday, Domenech reserves his most critical comments for Franck Ribéry, Anelka and Thierry Henry. “I couldn’t bear to hear everyone giving their opinion on everything,” Domenech said. “I just wanted to be sick, to cry, to leave.”

On the day of the strike hundreds of locals from the town of Knysna gave the French players a rousing reception when they stepped off the team bus. After quickly shaking hands and signing autographs, they all returned to their bus.

“The France team had just crucified itself, in public, live on television,” Domenech said. “Maybe the players realised it, maybe they didn’t. Anyway, it was too late. The infernal machine had started up and was dragging all of Les Bleus to the abyss.”

Domenech felt powerless to regain any control of his squad. Even though France still had one match to play, against the hosts South Africa, the head coach was stunned when players chose to skip massage and other treatments and he exploded with rage in the hotel lobby.

“I’m out of here. I couldn’t give a damn about this bunch of imbeciles,” he says in his book, written largely in diary form. “I have no energy left. I don’t like them any more. I’ve had enough of their tantrums,” Domenech wrote before the 2-0 defeat by Mexico. “This team is completely incapable of transcending itself and I’m certainly to blame for something. I got it all wrong. I feel humiliated to have got it so wrong.”

How Does Damian Lilliard Act Like He’s Been There Before If He Hasn’t, Y’know, Been There Before?

Posted in Basketball at 2:17 pm by

Blazers PG Damian Lillard’s slam dunk with his club already up by 6 and 1.9 seconds left against Chicago last night raised the ire of the Bulls’ guardians of hoops etiquette, Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson. The Oregonian’s Joe Freeman shifts thru the hurt feelings :

“I just told him he can’t do that,” Gibson said. “He didn’t say anything. He was making a scene out of nothing. He made the layup and me and Joakim just addressed it, like, ‘In the future, you have to be smarter. A lot of teams aren’t going to let you do that.’”

“When I caught the ball, I didn’t know what to do honestly,” Lillard said. “I was just like, ‘Man, I’m here by myself, I don’t know what to do.’ I didn’t mean no disrespect to them … next time, I just know to dribble the ball out.”

It’s ironic that Noah was one of the Bulls most upset by Lillard’s late-game dunk, considering he drew scrutiny Nov. 6 for heaving a late three-pointer against the Orlando Magic to try to earn Chicago fans a free Big Mac. The Bulls had a 99-93 victory sewed up when Noah launched a three with 3.9 seconds left in an effort to get his team to 100 points and earn fans a McDonald’s coupon similar to the Blazers’ chalupa promotion
.

“You don’t do that and I think he knows better now,” Aldridge said. “I don’t think he’ll do it going forward.”

11.18.12

Q : The Worst Part Of Bart Scott’s (Failed) Media Boycott?

Posted in Gridiron, Sports Journalism at 10:57 pm by

A: He probably owes Rasheed Wallace royalties. The New York Post’s Bart Hubbach on Scott’s behavior after the Jets’ defeat of St. Louis earlier today.

The Gang Green linebacker ordered every Jets defensive player to say nothing but “both teams played hard” to reporters, threatening anyone that don’t obey his wishes. Scott’s anger clearly stems from a report this week that published anonymous Jets players ripping Tim Tebow.

Safety Yeremiah Bell refused to participate in the boycott and Scott yelled at Bryan Thomas for breaking it, calling him “a [expletive] sellout.” Bell told Scott: “Stop it. Just stop.”

Scott ended up speaking calmly and openly to the media after his attempts fell flat.

Backne To The Future Pt. II – Chass Predicts Piazza’s Book Won’t Even Mention Sam Champion

Posted in Baseball, Sports Journalism at 6:51 pm by

Last June, I wonder if “a major publisher would ave advanced Mike Piazza $800,000 merely to find out the favorite backstop’s favorite King’s X album?” (“Can one fashion a New York Times best seller from the words, ‘Where’s Mota?’ repeated 50,000 times?”). Said questions were raised by former NY Times baseball columnist Murray Chass‘ insistence the scheduled February 2013 publication of Mike Piazza’s autobiography was curiously close to the next batch of Hall Of Fame inductees being unveiled. Earlier today, Chass revealed himself as still utterly obsessed with Piazza’s rumored use of PED’s, and specifically the complexion of the metal-loving backstop’s back (link swiped from Repoz and Baseball Think Factory)

We’re getting closer to the moment of truth for Mike Piazza. His name, for the first time, will be on the Hall of Fame ballot voters will soon receive, and his book is supposed to be out in February.

The book has been kept hush-hush, the better for voters not to know if he admits in the book to using steroids use.

A bad scenario for the voters: they elect him, then learn from the book that he used steroids.

A bad scenario for Piazza: he is not elected on the first ballot, and his admission in print bars him from ever gaining election.

A good scenario for voters: enough vote for him to keep him eligible for future ballots until the book is published and we see what he says about steroids.

A good scenario for Piazza: he finds a way to prove he never used steroids, and the tell-tale acne that covered his back and disappeared only when baseball began testing for steroids was just a delayed case of teen-age acne.

Here’s yet another scenario ; with all the scores to settle (Clemens, Mota, Art Howe), discussions of popular culture (Zakk Wylde, Eddie Trunk, Stuart Murdoch) and myriad opportunities to declare his heterosexuality, maybe, just maybe, Metal Mike never mentions backne once?

11.17.12

Coming To The Alamo Ritz Monday Night : “Hard Core Logo” (1996)

Posted in Austin, Cinema, Rock Und Roll at 10:38 pm by

At the time of Bruce McDonald’s “Hard Core Logo” being commercially released, the phenomena of 2nd generation punk bands doing reunion tours no one had asked for was not nearly the common practice it is today (let alone fully institutionalized to the point where the Fun Fun Fun Festival might feature a half dozen or more any given year).  And we’re all painfully familiar with such endeavors ;  they’re rarely cash grabs. Most of the time, they run the gamut from a fun trip down memory lane for a handful of fans and friends, to something slightly more desperate in terms of being unable to get off the fucking  treadmill.  Every so often, there’s a transcendent musical moment or an inspiring reinvention years after the fact.  In the case of the fictional Canadian quartet Hard Core Logo, there’s precious little in the way of transcendence or reinvention.

Reassembled by frontguy/founder Joe Dick (Hugh Dillon) for a “Rock Against Guns” benefit in Vancouver, Hard Core Logo take the good reception as an excuse to embark on an ill-fated tour of Western Canada.  Musically, they’re not super memorable.  The mimed performances look, well, mimed.  And the songs are lousy, aside from a faithful cover of “Sonic Reducer”. These guys are so meat & potatoes, DOA seem almost avant by comparison (and of course, there’s a cameo from DOA).  But this isn’t about how great Hard Core Logo were supposed to be or even how they were so terrible “you’ve got to hear them” (one acquaintance likened the phony doc to “a Canadian ‘Spinal Tap’”, which I don’t get in the slightest).   “Hard Core Logo” might be the only film I’ve seen that really captures the boredom, the abject sadness of what it’s like to be a below-average touring band that’s still clinging to some delusion of relevancy.  That it takes place in Canada and the band in question is ostensibly punk is besides the point.  I am willing to bet you know someone just like this, no matter where you’re from or what genre we’re talking about.

The crux of the story revolves around the late-hate relationship between Dick and guitarist Billy Talent (capably played by non-rocker Callum Keith Rennie, most recently of basic cable’s “The Killing”).  Dick is the annoying, arrested adolescent, doomed to keep-it-real until death ; Talent the Mick Jones archetype (more trad rock star, upwardly mobile, with a paid gig waiting for him with some stateside sub-Hole ensemble).  That their band kind of stinks and the actors in question look as comfortable wielding guitars as Al Leiter swinging a bat doesn’t make Dick and Talent’s banter any less compelling or reminiscent of numerous other partnerships.  I’m sure someone could fashion a decent comedy out of the Carl Barat and Pete Doherty duo, but cracks tend to appear faster when a band is playing in front of 20 people when they’re pushing 40.  Or at least they’re a different type of cracks.  When they’re not pretending to play, Dillon and Rennie are pretty convincing as lifelong friends heading for yet another, (final) falling out.

“Hard Core Logo” is being screened this November 19 as part of the Alamo’s Music Mondays series.  Tickets are $5 ; metered parking in the neighborhood is free that night.

The Longest 19 Minutes Of Mike Tannenbaum’s Life

Posted in Gridiron, Sports Radio, Sports TV at 4:47 pm by

I’m no fan of the NY Jets, but I’m gonna have to give Gang Green GM Mike Tannenbaum credit where due.  Never before have I heard the person responsible for assembling the roster of an underachieving team suggest the franchise’s security department shared in the blame.

Charles Oakley Humbly Suggests He & Patrick Ewing Are Almost As Big A Part Of Knicks History As Baron Davis

Posted in Basketball at 4:40 pm by

Though it wouldn’t be entirely correct to say there’s no room for old Knicks in James Dolan’s regime —- John Starks and Allan Houston remain gainfully employed — the lack of a role at MSG for Patrick Ewing and Charles Oakley continues to rub some the wrong way, particularly in light of Baron Davis’ cushy gig. The New York Daily News’ Stefan Bondy caught up with Oakley while the power forward / fashion plate / chef prepared Thanksgiving meals for the needy yesterday, with the former Michael Jordan wingman claiming he’s “cried and tried” to secure a job with the Knicks.

“They say I’m hard on them. I say, I’m not hard on them; that’s just the way the game goes and people have opinions,” Oakley said. “Ex-players I talk to, they say, ‘Management, they like you. But sometimes it’s the way you say things, the way you do things. I don’t know. I try to keep it simple and up front. I feel like I owe that to the fans with them coming to watch me for 10 years, following me, being a fan of mine. I feel I’m not going to let them down because somebody else wants to say something else. . . . (Dolan) shouldn’t be mad at me because all I did was come before him and play the hardest and the best I could do. I’m going to be a Knick for life, though, no matter what people say.”

Oakley was also critical of the way the Knicks have treated Ewing, who was offered a D-League coaching job instead of the Knicks’ assistant gig given to LaSalle Thompson.

Ewing declined the D-League offer.“That’s embarrassing,” Oakley said. “How can you offer Patrick a D-League coaching job? I think it’s embarrassing. No matter what a person did to you or whatever over the years, his agent or somebody. “That’s Kindergarten. This man has been the coach for 10 years and you’re going to offer him a Kindergarten job. Totally disrespectful. Then you’re going to hire a guy, LaSalle Thompson, that had nothing to do with the Knicks.”

11.16.12

Raptors Fans – Perhaps Not Entirely Familar With A Former Lithuanian Player Of The Year…

Posted in Basketball, We Aren't The World at 9:22 pm by

…or at least not totally sure how to pronounce his name.  Teammate Amir Johnson attempts to aid the Toronto public in getting to know their 7-foot tall, first round draft choice.

Cumbucket Media’s Entertainment Division Announces Annual Christmas Bash

Posted in Austin, Merry Fucking Christmas, Rock Und Roll at 7:22 pm by

There’s not many details to be found at 12XU.net, and with good reason.  What else do you need to know?  It’s free. Major religious holidays were practically invented for The Golden Boys.  There’s nothing that says “holiday season” like the very good chance Jeremy Steen might vomit on your shoes.  Burnt Skull’s 2013 recorded debut will soon pass the threshold from “hotly anticipated” to “wildly overrated” (with any luck).  As for Jonly Bonly, it’s only the 2nd show for this new Austin trio fronted by OBN III’s / The Best guitarist Jason Smith, so do you really think it’s fair to burden him with your insanely high expectations?  WHEN PEOPLE IN OUR CITY ARE STARVING?

With that in mind, we’ll be collecting canned goods for the Capital Area Food Bank of Texas, but such donations are optional.  Even the most horribly selfish amongst us are invited to this party.

Fred Wilpon Remains Squarely In Bud Selig’s “Not As Bad As Frank McCourt” File

Posted in Baseball, New York, New York at 4:57 pm by

Of the Mets’ lack of urgency in signing newly crowned Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey to a long-term extension, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney argues, “They exist in the biggest market in the world. They aren’t the Miami Marlins. They’re not the Tampa Bay Rays. They should be able to take some risks, especially after next season, when Johan Santana’s contract is set to expire,” adding, “if their current financial circumstances prevent the Wilpon family from giving a well-earned extension to their breakout star and fan favorite, they should just unload the team to somebody who will operate it like the big-market club that it is.” And if you’re waiting for MLB commissioner Bud Selig to lean on the Wilpons to agree to such a sale, don’t hold your breath, as the following item from Newsday’s David Lennon explains.

Selig remains confident that Fred Wilpon’s ownership group has the money to field a competitive team regardless of how little is being used to improve the Mets, one of baseball’s premier franchises in the sport’s biggest market.

“They said they do and I think they do,” Selig said shortly after the MLB owners’ meetings concluded at the O’Hare Hyatt. “It just depends. It’s interesting how you rebuild or how you do things. Spending money doesn’t guarantee anybody anything. I want to be very careful here.

“As far as the Mets are concerned, I know they’re very comfortable where they are and they’re very optimistic. I’ll take them at their word.”

Both Fred Wilpon and COO Jeff Wilpon attended the owners’ meetings. Fred declined to take questions from reporters before leaving Wednesday night and Jeff has made it an unofficial policy to not provide updates on the team’s financial state.

11.15.12

Are Knee Injuries More Serious Than Brain Damage? Brian Urlacher Says, “Do The Math”

Posted in Gridiron, Medical Science at 9:06 pm by

“Don’t want to get concussed, don’t play.” In a nutshell, that’s how Bears LB Brian Urlacher looks at the current outpouring of concern over football-related brain injuries in general, or perhaps the fate of concussed Chicago QB Jay Cutler in particular. With quotes collected by the Chicago Tribune’s Brad Briggs Thursday, Urlacher seems to think the league emphasis on blows to the head, well, blows.

Urlacher said he’s not worried about his future and brain injuries and says he’s suffered only one major concussion, in 2003 at Denver when he missed “a couple plays.”

“I think they shouldn’t allow cut blocks because our knees are important to us, too,” Urlacher said. “I know concussions are a big deal, too, but I think cut blocks are a big deal but that seems to be OK with the NFL so they’re not too concerned about safety. They’re concerned about long-term concussions, but immediately they are not concerned about your knees or your ankles or anything like that. I think that should be an issue.

“Concussions are taking care of themselves. It’s a big deal to everyone because of all of the older players coming back and saying they’re all messed up now. That’s definitely an issue but I think the cut blocks need to be a big issue as well.”

From Urlacher’s standpoint, knee injuries caused by cut blocks are a bigger deal than concussions.

“Huge because a knee injury can put you out for a season,” he said. “A concussion you may miss a game or two. Huge difference.”

For One Brief Moment Earlier This Week, Matt Bonner Almost Resembled A Basketball Player

Posted in Basketball, Fashion at 7:11 pm by

Though I’m not sure persons obsessed with Matt Bonner’s choice of sneakers technically qualify as “NBA foot fetishists”, but that’s how San Antonio Express-News beat writer Mike Monroe describes those stunned by the Red Rocket opting for a pair of Addidas before a recent game.  Hanging in the (new) balance? Bonner’s loyalties to a decidedly unglamorous brand.

“I think everybody in the locker room noticed it,” teammate Stephen Jackson said. “The New Balance has been his thing for a long time. It’s kind of like Shaft cutting his ‘fro.”

Formerly sponsored by New Balance, Bonner was running low on his favorite shoe until uncovering a few long-lost boxes in a locker at home.

“It was kind of like finding the Dead Sea Scrolls,” Bonner said.

With four pairs of New Balances left, Bonner believes he now has enough to last the season, especially if he occasionally practices in another brand to save wear and tear on his game shoes.

Bonner’s teammates wouldn’t mind seeing him break out the Adidas for game use at some point.

“He looks more like a basketball player in them — and not a tennis player turned NBA star,” Jackson said.

Davidoff : Many People Would Like To See Jeffrey Loria (Dead)

Posted in Baseball at 3:13 pm by

Yes, I am already sorry about the above headline. MLB’s owners meetings are taking place in Rosemount, IL this week,  and in the wake of Miami throwing competition to the wind with the proposed gifting of Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson and Mark Buerhle among others to the Blue Jays, fans and media are hardly alone in their frustration.  As the New York Post’s Ken Davidoff writes, Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria (above) spent Wednesday, “alone in the lunch room, not conversing with his fellow owners.”

Teams from the American League East were unhappy that the Blue Jays improved dramatically, clubs from the National League Central and West were displeased that the four other NL East members would be able to feast on the carcass posing as the Marlins and there was a general sense of embarrassment over the Marlins cutting bait just one year after opening a new ballpark built overwhelmingly with public monies.

In a separate interview with CBSSports.com, Loria alluded to the team’s last-place finish and said, “We have to take a new course.”

The Mets, represented here by CEO Fred Wilpon and COO Jeff Wilpon, declined comment, but they had to be thrilled. The NL East just became easier, and whatever the Mets’ problems are, they pale in comparison to those of the Marlins.

11.14.12

Isola’s Reminder That Jim Buss Isn’t The Only Genetic Lottery Winner Threatened By Phil Jackson

Posted in Basketball, Sports Journalism at 10:41 pm by

Ever since the surprise announcement late Sunday evening that Mike D’Antoni, rather than Phil Jackson, would be hired to succeed Mike Brown, there’s been no shortage of conjecture about exactly what went wrong during the Lakers’ talks with Jackson and his representative, Todd Musburger.   The New York Daily News’ Frank Isola insists “Lakers management didn’t want to meet (Jackson’s) salary demands and take orders from the high maintenance, aging hippie,”,  adding without much prompting, “Madison Square Garden Chairman James Dolan never bothered to contact Jackson for the very same reasons.”

Today, Dolan looks like the smartest owner around because he has a winning coach in Mike Woodson and a savvy general manager in Glen Grunwald. He also has two guys he can control. Woodson, a Brown protégé, had to sever ties with Brown’s agent before Dolan would talk contract. Grunwald, as nice a guy as you will find, is barred from speaking to the media.

Heck, the Knicks have employees whose job is to eavesdrop on conversations between reporters and players. We’re talking established veterans who are 37, 38 and 40 years old being treated like children. And it’s not like Jason Kidd is revealing what really happened in Benghazi or giving away Dolan’s WiFi password.

It’s a rather silly exercise, especially in a locker room with engaging and been-there, done-that players. Is it meant as a form of intimidation? Sure. Mostly, it’s a way of letting everyone know that Big (dufus) Brother is always watching.

Stay Dead, B.F. Skinner : Rockets Mouthpiece Matt Bullard Weighs In On Royce White’s Woes

Posted in Basketball, Mental Health at 6:11 pm by


Read the rest of this entry »

The Nihilist Spasms Of Jeffrey Loria

Posted in Baseball at 4:37 am by

This past July 23, Sirius/XM’s Dino Costa assured his several dozen listeners that the Marlins’ rush to dump Anibel Sanchez and Omar Infante on Detroit was no cause for alarm and it was simply a matter of time before South Florida’s baseball fans — previously disguised as acres of empty seats —- eventually embraced Jeffrey Loria and David Samson’s garish team and stadium.

Fast forward some 18 weeks later, and it seems that only does one blatant fire sale deserve a couple more, but the good people of Miami are about as likely to appreciate what Loria’s done for their community as the residents of Cheyenne, WY are to thank Costa for what he’s done for theirs. The pending 12-player exchange between Miami and Toronto would send SS Jose Reyes, RHP Josh Johnson, LHP Mark Buehrle, catcher John Buck and utility man Emilio Bonifacio north of the border for the modest haul of homophobic eye-black enthusiast Yunel Escobar and a half dozen other barely breathing human bodies. Simply because the Marlins have fewer serious fans than Costa has legitimate Twitter followers, that does not make Loria’s machinations any less sickening or cynical. Once upon a time, Bowie Kuhn put the kibosh on Charlie Finley’s efforts to dispense of highly paid talent, but if you’re waiting for Bud Selig to take a similar stance in this day and age, you’d have better luck selling Escobar a blu-ray disc of “The Birdcage”. In the considered view of
Faith & Fear Flushing’s Jason Fry, “ Loria is a shambling colony of amoral excrescence disguising itself with the skin of a human being”

They are flesh-eating mosquitoes surrounding an orphanage in some ruined part of the world, bred by cannibals laying land mines. Not only that, they are the worst collective entity the world will ever see.

The Yankees have values, and a code built from those values that they live by. To be sure, they’re twisted and evil values, ones that teach their fans that the appropriate soundtrack for the death of decency and fair play is laughter echoing throughout the icy halls of an empty palace. But, well, they’re values. The Yankees stand for something, however reprehensible that something is to good-hearted people.

The Marlins? They stand for nothing. They embody the void — nihilism given terrible shape as a franchise, devouring everything touched. The Marlins are the entropic cackle that greets the death of everything.

11.13.12

AFC Wimbledon Supporters Less Than Thrilled About A Bus Ride To Milton Keynes

Posted in Football at 10:16 pm by

AFC Wimbledon achieved promotion to the Football League last season after being formed by fans 9 years prior when Wimbledon F.C were rebranded/relocated as Milton Keynes Dons. The latter club’s 6-1 defeat of Cambridge City earlier tonight set up a an FA Cup 2nd round home tie next with AFC Wimbledon, the first-ever meeting between the two clubs. In the view of some fans abandoned by Wimbledon F.C., this isn’t exactly an eagerly anticipated clash, as this item from tomorrow’s Guardian explains.

AFC Wimbledon, have said they will grudgingly fulfil the fixture. But Simon Wheeler, chairman of the Independent Wimbledon Supporters Association, will not be there to see it.

“This has reopened a lot of scars,” he said. “We never wanted this to happen and frankly I feel numb. I won’t be going and I know lots of other fans won’t be going. Personally I would rather take my girlfriend’s mother to the garden centre than go to that game.

“Other fans will have to take a long look at themselves and make a personal, informed decision. We’ll talk to the fans and to the club. We didn’t ever want this to happen but it does highlight the phenomenal success of AFC Wimbledon from having had everything ripped out.”

The MK Dons chairman, Pete Winkelman, has described the meeting as a “potentially fantastic tie”. But Wheeler added: “MK Dons might say how much they are looking forward to the game but actually they are probably rather embarrassed.”