Friday, April 30, 2010

Ryan Madson Fought A Chair....And The Chair Sent Madson To The DL

This is something straight out of the page of bizarro world and/or the 2009 New York Mets. Or a combination of the two. After blowing a save in the 10th inning of that crazy game against the Giants, Ryan Madson was a very angry person. He wanted to destroy some shit. His method: kicking a folding chair. But what young Ryan did not realize was that folding chairs do not like getting kicked. When you kick them, they tend to make you instantly regret it. Ryan Madson will now attest to that statement for his misplaced anger at innocent metal folding chairs has resulted in him being placed on the 15-day Disabled List with a broken toe. From CSN Philly.

Angry after blowing a save for the second time this season in Wednesday’s game against the Giants, the reliever exited the dugout, slipped and then drop kicked a chair. Admittedly it’s not the smartest act of Madson’s career.

“I let down my teammates. I let down the fans that want us all to be out there playing hard for them. I feel terrible about that,” Madson said, before gimping around the clubhouse in a calf-high protective boot. “I've done it before. Not kick stuff, but I've gotten upset before and never broken a bone. It's just one of those things. I learned from it. I won't do it again. I realize how much I'm letting my teammates down.”

Still, if one act can describe the way things have gone for Madson this season, it’s the TKO with the metal chair in San Francisco. In nine appearances this season, Madson is 1-0 (the win came in the game for which he kicked the chair) with four saves in six chances. His ERA is a robust 7.00 while opponents have batted .333 against him.

If there is a silver lining in this it’s that the timing was not awful. Madson was placed on the disabled list just as the team’s usual closer Brad Lidge was activated. Instead, the Phillies will have to make some adjustments for the seventh and eighth innings without Madson in his regular role.

“It’s one of those things that happened,” Manuel said. “He told me how he did it and he’s very embarrassed by it. He was very apologetic.”

Oy ve. I can't.......I can't even......oy ve.....thank goodness for the Flyers tomorrow.

You want something that I did not think I would be doing now back in March? Saying oy ve about the Phillies and eagerly anticipating the Flyers. Shouldn't the 2 be reversed?

April 30 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread; Oh Sidney, Where Ever Did You Go?

Montreal @ Pittsburgh 7:00 (*Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland, Dez Bryant, And The Revelation Of Context (UPDATED: And Social Disorganization Theory

I think we all know the story of Jeff Ireland and Dez Bryant by now. For those that have been living under a rock, it is being reported that in an interview with now Cowboys WR Dez Bryant, Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland asked Dez whether or not Dez's mom was a prostitute. Ireland has since apologized and the issue has seemingly been brushed under the rug, but what if there was more to it than just that? To everyone sitting on their ass now thinking that this story is nothing but the world's dumbest football interview question, I can tell you right now, you haven't the faintest idea what you are talking about. And by the end of this post, you will be sorry for saying anything you said negatively about Miami Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland.

It's about the media and people protecting Dez Bryant. In other words, this is not a story about a dumb interviewer, it's about the absence of context and now the revelation.

It started with an interview Marcellus Wiley did for ESPNEWS, and continued in a long string of tweets from Wiley. The initial question by Ireland was manufactured by Mike Silver at Yahoo! and Brooks of SbB. A recent stream of tweets from Marcellus Wiley further teased the truth.

I actually do! RT @pigskinpundit @marcelluswiley Do you know yourself the exact context in which that question is asked? I'm struggling to C

BINGO! RT @Kaleem88 @marcelluswiley I don't think Jeff was in the wrong, I think he worded the question wrong

Big Biz PR! RT @raromero07 then why hasnt Ireland come w/ the rest of the story yet to clear his name? why apologize if there was more 2 it

Bcuz Dez knows the TRUTH & CONTEXT of the ?'s RT @ronwahl Dez is not making a big deal of this-why is everyone else going berserk over it

I'm not the only person that knows the entire story, but every1 is trying to protect Dez. That's why it's not out YET!

Out of respect, another trying to protect Dez RT @nickborrelli Why didn't Ireland tell the public what the context was when he apologized?

Every1 reacted (understandably so) with emotion to this story, diminishing the cognitive thought process. Sit back & think w/o emotion.....

.and the truth and the context of the question will start to crystallize. Their is a justifiable reason why someone asked him that question

I know this is sensitive stuff...and trust me, I get that. But sometimes in life, you have to deal with real, despite how painful it is!
And now the money tweets. The moment when you will no longer make fun of Jeff Ireland and heck, the moment you will apologize to Jeff Ireland. You think I am kidding? The line of questioning by Ireland was perfectly rational though just poorly worded. You will soon see that.

First, a follower of Wiley hitting the nail right on the head:

BINGO! RT @RealCedAllen Takin a guess but never heard ANYTHING bout Dez's pops! Is it that he was once a pimp? That would give reason 2 ask.

And a (presumably condensed) version of the transcript in 140 characters from (of all things) the Dan LeBatard Show Twitter account.

Here's dolphins side: what does dad do? Pimp. Mom? Works for dad. She's a prostitute? No she helps him with other stuff.

All of a sudden does this all make sense?

People everywhere want to protect Dez Bryant. But when you admit in an interview in response to the standard question of what your father does for a living (I've been on both sides of interviews, family background is standard stuff here, folks) and you answer "pimp," is asking if the mother is a prostitute not a reasonable follow-up. Could it have been worded better? Sure, Ireland could have worded it better, but Dez set himself up for that. After all, does a pimp not often find themselves with prostitues? Asking that as a follow-up is not reaching far. And even Silver did not lead with that quote in his story on Dez where he first brought it up. Aside from that one quote buried, why else did Dez Bryant not make this a huge story? Because he knew the context. And why were people so afraid to admit this context? Because people wanted to protect Dez Bryant from the word getting out to the public that he admitted in an interview that his father was a pimp. You think the Dolphins are going to reveal the context and throw Dez under the bus like that? Hell no, they are not. They did the right thing by not speaking up or saying anything. You do not throw a kid under the bus, but a certain Mike Silver could be one to ask, "okay, Dez, why would they ask if your mother was a prostitute?" And then when he found out the perfectly rational context of the whole story then just drop it and not print it and lead to a whole controversy.

Of course, the context will never get out to the public like the original story did, so a lot of people will go on thinking that Jeff Ireland is an incompetent jackass who with no justification at all asked a kid who survived a tough childhood if his mother was a prostitute. I just hope more people learn the truth about what happened behind close doors and do not judge a man and his beliefs based off of that.

Update: Mike Silver apparently just spoke to a source close to Dez who says the Dolphins story is bullshit. That source cites the apology as the main reason the Dolphins story can't be true. This has already been well covered above, but I shall elaborate further in that how many times have you apologized just to move on from an awkward situation, even if you were not at fault just to get away from it all, end the madness, take the hit and move on with more important things.

Instead of re-stating what he says, I will quote Dan Levy from the Sporting Blog, who brings up a very interesting and valid point that even if the Dolphins are lying and this was a random, out-of-the-blue question that contrary to belief, asking Dez Bryant about his mother like that is nowhere near as bad as everyone makes it out to be, and in fact, a rather smart interview question, if worded a lot better.

It's actually quite amazing to me how much fervor this has created, making me feel like a bit of a sociopath for thinking the question was tactless, but fair to ask a guy you're potentially going to give millions of dollars to. In addition, hearing the team's explanation, it was clearly germane for Ireland to ask that question in that context. By all accounts, the question may have been disrespectful, but it seems that Bryant opened the door.

And while were on it, I just don't see how sending private investigators to research a prospect's background – something the league and teams regularly do – is okay, but asking a kid a question like this about his mom is off limits. Michael Vick was adamant about the fact that he didn't think dog fighting was all that bad because he was raised in an environment where the practice was commonplace. So shouldn't teams be doing their research as to what type of criminality a prospect is exposed? My wife, a PhD in Criminal Justice, went back and forth with me on this:

"Social Disorganization Theory says any exposure to that sort of criminal life can make you more likely to do it. Social Bond Theory says that, in essence, subjects form bonds with people and – to put it a way sports fans can understand – being around people who do bad things does make someone more likely to do bad things themselves.

"Having said that, there are many criminological theories that suggest that free will is more important than socialization."

In other words, people should be able to decide right from wrong on their own, but there are theories that indicate being exposed to a life full of bad decisions could lead to bad decisions. With millions of dollars at stake, it's amazing if more people didn't ask the questions Ireland did…albeit with a little more tact.
Now I had never heard of Social Disorganization Theory before this, but I've looked it up. It exists. What Levy's wife says about it is true. So while on the outset if may not seem that asking about a guy's mother in a football interview, regardless of context, is completely irrelevant, if you are thinking about possibly committing millions of dollars to the guy, don't you think you would like to know a little more about his chances of getting into trouble? He may have stayed out of trouble before, but that does not mean anything about the future. You may think the kid is a good kid, but you never know for sure.

Regardless of whose side of the story turns out to be correct (and we'll never know for sure until we see the transcript), why does any of this matter? While I initially let my emotions guide me in my thoughts of Ireland, it has become quite clear that whether out of the blue or in a germane context, knowing that a person you are potentially paying millions of dollars to had a rough childhood with a mother who is only 15 years older than him and asking about that is not offensive, is not insensitive, is perfectly relevant (especially if you consider Social Disorganization Theory and Social Bond Theory), and should even be done more often. It's like Levy said, you hire private investigators to investigate and research every aspect of these kids private lives. Then something like this poorly-worded, well-intentioned interview question comes out and all of a sudden the outcry against Ireland and the Dolphins is on the levels of political scandal??????

What the fuck?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

And You Thought The Winter Classic At Fenway Was The Only Time Baseball Would Meet Hockey This Year

To all those that thought the Philadelphia Flyers were playing the Bruins in the Conference Semifinals of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, all I can says is what on earth were you thinking? Clearly you did not get the memo. Meet the Bruins real opponent per everybody's favorite prop betting site,

Roy Halladay will be manning the pipes, while Chase Utley and Jayson Werth lead a dangerous and powerful offensive attack with Ryan Howard the power forward getting in front of the net and snapping goals in from the point left and right. Cole Hamels and Joe Blanton are flatout beasts in the defensive zone.

The Bruins ain't got nothing on these Phillies. They've already won a World Series and now they are bound and determined to win the Stanley Cup!

Wait....what? This is just a bodog typo????? You mean Howard, Utley, Rollins, and Hamels are not seeking to add a Stanley Cup in addition to their World Series rings? Oh damn.

(Hat tip to Broad Street Hockey)

April 29 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: Let The Conference Semifinals Begin!

One game today and it is a Versus exclusive. No local broadcasts tonight, just Versus in the USA and TSN in Canada.

Game 1: Detroit @ San Jose 9:00 (*Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Lindsay Soto) (TSN - Chirs Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs Conference Semifinal Schedule

No rest for the weary! After all of that Game 7 fun, no rest will be had for the hockey viewing audience. Because The Eagles are invading HP Pavilion on Friday and Saturday, the NHL has no choice but to play Game 1 of the Red Wings-Sharks series on Thrusday. CBC announcers have already been revealed and are seen below, TSN has yet to announce anything regarding their anything, Versus announcers (and to that point, NBC Inside the Glass announcers) switch across series so much and are frequently unknown by the public until the day of the game, so I will not post those until the day of the game. Versus games with an asterisk denote Versus exclusive broadcasts that will not be seen on local CSN/FSN channels. (all times eastern)

Eastern Conference Semifinals

#4 Pittsburgh Penguins vs. #8 Montreal Canadiens

Game 1: April 30: Montreal @ Pittsburgh 7:00 (*Versus) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)
Game 2: May 2: Montreal @ Pittsburgh 2:00 (NBC) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)
Game 3: May 4: Pittsburgh @ Montreal 7:00 (*Versus) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)
Game 4: May 6: Pittsburgh @ Montreal 7:00 (*Versus) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)
Game 5: May 8: Montreal @ Pittsburgh 7:00 (Versus) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)
Game 6: May 10: Pittsburgh @ Montreal 7:00 (Versus) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)
Game 7: May 12: Montreal @ Pittsburgh TBD (Versus) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healey, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

#7 Philadelphia Flyers vs. #6 Boston Bruins

Game 1: May 1: Philadelphia @ Boston 12:30 (NBC) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)
Game 2: May 3: Philadelphia @ Boston 7:00 (*Versus) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)
Game 3: May 5: Boston @ Philadelphia 7:00 (*Versus) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)
Game 4: May 7: Boston @ Philadelphia 7:00 (*Versus) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)
Game 5: May 10: Philadelphia @ Boston 7:00 (Versus) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)
Game 6: May 12: Boston @ Philadelphia TBD (Versus) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)
Game 7: May 14: Philadelphia @ Boston 7:00 (Versus) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Western Conference Semifinals

#1 San Jose Sharks vs. #5 Detroit Red Wings

Game 1: April 29: Detroit @ San Jose 9:00 (*Versus) (TSN - Chirs Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)
Game 2: May 2: Detroit @ San Jose 8:00 (*Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)
Game 3: May 4: San Jose @ Detroit 7:30 (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)
Game 4: May 6: San Jose @ Detroit 7:30 (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)
Game 5: May 8: Detroit @ San Jose 10:30 (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)
Game 6: May 10: San Jose @ Detroit 7:30 (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)
Game 7: May 12: Detroit @ San Jose TBD (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

#2 Chicago Blackhawks vs. #3 Vancouver Canucks

Game 1: May 1: Vancouver @ Chicago 8:00 (*Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)
Game 2: May 3: Vancouver @ Chicago 9:00 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)
Game 3: May 5: Chicago @ Vancouver 9:30 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)
Game 4: May 7: Chicago @ Vancouver 9:30 (*Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)
Game 5: May 9: Vancouver @ Chicago 8:00 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)
Game 6: May 11: Chicago @ Vancouver 9:30 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)
Game 7: May 13: Vancouver @ Chicago 8:00 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

With me not getting Versus at college, this means that I will have no choice but to watch my Flyers in Games 2 and 3 on online streams. Seriously. Oh well, I guess, I made out just fine with the game 7s and the other playoff games that I saw online, so I guess no real worries here, only that I'd rather watch my Flyers on TV. Whatever, I guess. I have a site that has not let me down yet this postseason with good quality streams that do not lag behind (knocks on wood). I am going home Friday, May 7, so I should be home that night by the time the game starts. And I do get Versus at home. Yay.

Canadiens Upset Capitals To Cap One Of The Most Improbable Comebacks In NHL Playoff History

Before last night's Montreal-Washington Game 7, since playoff expansion to the current format in 1994, no #8 seed had ever been down 3 games to 1 and ended up winning the series. Such a comeback had never History was made at the Verizon Center.

If you watched that whole video, you may have noticed the controversial waved off goal call at the start of the 3rd period. It appeared the Washington Capitals had tied it at 1 right at the start of the period, but the referees waved it off. The question on everybody's mind is, "was it the right call?" And the answer is frankly not a simple yes or no. Here is what the rule states.

69.3 Contact Inside the Goal Crease – If an attacking player initiates
contact with a goalkeeper, incidental or otherwise, while the
goalkeeper is in his goal crease, and a goal is scored, the goal will be
Halak was in the crease the whole time. Puck Daddy has the picture of contact starting between Knuble and Halak before the puck is in the net. Of course I bring that up because Bruce Boudreau seems to be claiming otherwise in an attempt to no doubt deflect the blame off him as his job could very well be in jeopardy. Anyways, back to the goal, if you are going exactly by the book, then Brad Watson made the right call. That goal should have been disallowed. However, the contact in that situation was no doubt ticky-tacky. It was not blatant and it was not Halak being pushed in the net with the puck like Varlamov would be later on in the game (that goal ended up being disallowed as well). Worse infractions have gone uncalled and goals have stood up with worse, more blatant, and more forceful contact being made. You could argue and you would have a point that in a Game 7, that is a kind of call you let stand. So while you have a case that the officials should have and could have let something like that go, you cannot make the argument that the officials in that situation made the absolute wrong call. By the books, the right call was made on the ice.

Enough addressing the controversy and more of being in awe at what happened. I am not sure if I could still wrap my head around what happened in this series. Going into this thing, if ever there was a slam dunk sweep or 5-game series win for the top-seed, this was the series. The Capitals were even on the verge of that. Yet, somewhere, thing got lost along the way as it all went wrong. The best regular season power play in the league was beyond abysmal, getting one PP goal all series long, and the team with the best regular season homework lost 3 times on home ice.

As for the Flyers, this means that we have a Winter Classic rematch (full schedule coming up in a bit) in the postseason. The 6-seeded Bruins have home-ice advantage. The #4 seeded Pittsburgh Penguins have home-ice throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs. All 3 divisional winners are gone. Wrap your head around those concepts. In a playoffs filled with odd statistical occurrences (all series tied 1-1, all East series went 3-1, all West series went 2-2), this one may be the oddest. Listed below are the 8 remaining teams with their original seed in the playoffs next to them. Get ready to have your mind blown.

#1 San Jose Sharks.
#2 Chicago Blackhawks
#3 Vancouver Canucks
#4 Pittsburgh Penguins
#5 Detroit Red Wings
#6 Boston Bruins
#7 Philadelphia Flyers
#8 Montreal Canadiens

How crazy fucked up is that? Of course, things still go by conference, so the Sharks are playing the Red Wings, and not the Canadiens, but damn, if that is not just bizarre.

I'll be the first to tell you that I hate the Canadiens, but you have to tip your hat to them for a stunning and unbelievable comeback, the likes of which the NHL has never seen before. Down 3 games to 1 after losing 2 straight at home, they rallied to win the last 3 games, 2 in Washington and 1 in Montreal, clinch the series, and eliminate the Habs. Simply stunning.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Phillies Vs. Giants And Canadiens Vs. Capitals Game 7: The Fate Of The Flyers Hangs In The Balance....

Hamels is pitching against Lincecum and here is your info for tonight's big Game 7 between the Capitals and the Canadiens.

Montreal @ Washington 7:00 (Versus - Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Bob Harwood) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Phillies Vs. Giants, April 27 Stanley Cup Playoffs: "WE'VE GOT A GAME SEVEN", And All Around Sports Chat Live Blog

Wainwright is pitching against Grandpa Moyer tonight at AT&T Park, but the big story of the night is no doubt the biggest hockey game in the history of Arizona.

Detroit @ Phoenix 9:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Lindsay Soto) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

Injury Bug Bites Again As The Flyers Lose The Heart And Soul Of Their Team

There are certain guys on the ice who do all the little things so well, that they become just as vital, if not more so than the playmakers, snipers, and the strong defensemen. For the Flyers, that player is Ian Laperriere. And now Ian Laperriere is going to be out for at least a month with a brain contusion and a slight concussion. From Flyers beat writer Tim Panaccio.

Forward Ian Laperriere, who suffered a fracture of the right orbital bone blocking a shot in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against New Jersey, has a concussion, and, even more dangerous, a brain contusion.

He is out indefinitely and likely won’t play again this spring.

“I will play with injuries, but not to my brain,” Laperriere told

Laperriere’s eye injury does not require surgery.

Laperriere was examined by doctors here and in Pittsburgh on Tuesday where Joseph Maroon, the vice-chairman of neurological surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, confirmed he had suffered a brain injury after reviewing a CT scan.
While some Flyers fans will want him to return ASAP, I am of the mindset that he will be better off sitting out the rest of the playoffs for the simple fact that if he is out for at least or even about a month, that puts us late in the conference finals and possibly into the Stanley Cup. If the Flyers make it that far, that likely means that his likely call-up, Andreas Nodl, has done a fine job and the Flyers have done a fine job at rallying around the injuries. Lappy is a fucking warrior and as much as I know he wants to play, it would kill me to see him comeback too soon and suffer a more permanent injury, especially with the brain involved.

For those that have not seen it yet and would like to know what kind of puck to the face it takes to knock out one of the game's good guys and tought as nails warriors, here is the slightly squeamish video.

Having taken a falling golf ball to the eye before, I honestly can't even watch that without seriously wincing in pain. For realz.

I have talked to people who were at that game Game 5 in Newark, and I can confirm those cheers that you heard immediately after the whistle, were cheers of Devils fans, presumably cheering the fact that Laperriere got hurt. Classless. Classless. Classless. Yeah, I know that Philly fans get the rep for cheering an unconscious Michael Irvin (and the same three words that I described those Devils fans can be used to describe those Philly fans: Classless. Classless. Classless.), but how many of you heard about those evil Devil fans cheering an injury to one of the game's toughest, hardest, working, and classiest players? Again, I repeat, perception is not reality. Reality is reality and the reality is there are douche bag and jackass sports fans everywhere, only you just do not hear about them because it is much more funner to single out one city for having a bad reputation than to rail against North American sports fans everywhere, is it not?

Enough of my soapbox and onto an actual piece of goodness on the Flyers injury front. It appears that Simon Gagne, who was originally projected to be out til around the time of Game 6 of a Conference Semifinal series may return as soon as Game 3 of said series. His toe is healing at an extremely fast pace. OMGagne.

Jack Edwards Strikes Again By Challenging His Inner Paul Steigerwald

Anyone who has been following me on Twitter (and if you are not, then you have no life and I pity you; especially seeing it is as easy as going to and clicking follow) since the end of this hockey season at the latest knows of my undying love for Jack Edwards. His passion for the game of hockey goes virtually unmatched and his idiomatic expressions and comparisons never cease to amaze me. That being said, I think good old Jack may have crossed the line a bit with his call at the end of last night's Buffalo-Boston Game 6, which saw the Bruins clinch the series four games to two.

"And the Sabres hopes sleep with the Edmund Fitzgerald in the bottom of Gitchee-Gumee! After one round in the playoffs, Snowball 1, Hell 0! The Bruins advance to the conference semis for the 2nd time in consecutive years."

Wow.....not only is that another joke about people dying, but it is also historically inaccurate. But it must be said that nobody here went down as hard as Hobey Baker. He went down in a plane crash!

You know, I do wonder if he plans these calls ahead of time or if they just come to him naturally. I mean, how else can you come up with the Edmund Fitzgerald in the Gitchee-Gumee and the whole Patriots Day ragtag Bostonian farmers spiel he came up with last year?

Monday, April 26, 2010

April 26 Stanley Cup Playoffs Live Blog: Habs, Sabres, And Preds Fight For Survival

is taking place at Keith's Sports Journal. And after that, I get to gloat in Keith's face about the awesomeness of Roy Halladay. Win for me. Don't worry, though, he can drool over Lincecum in front of me on Wednesday.

Anyways, here is the schedule of playoff games today.

Game 6: Washington @ Montreal 7:00 (Versus- Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Charissa Thompson) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Game 6: Buffalo @ Boston 7:00 (CBC - Dean Brown and Greg Millen, SR: Cassie Campbell)

Game 6: Chicago @ Nashville 9:00 (Versus) (TSN)

BREAKING: Phillies extend Ryan Howard!

Okay, so maybe it's not so breaking now, but thus is what happens when you decide to take a nap.

Anyways, as you can tell by the headline, the Philadelphia Phillies extended Ryan Howard! It's a 5-year/$125 million extension with both positives and negatives.


Not to mention that he is Ryan Howard, his numbers have still been on the improving side each year, and oh yeah, he's Ryan motherfuckin' Howard, bitches. Howard has been a force since joining the Phillies and now he can only be a force for the Phillies and never a force against the Phillies. Yes folks, that's a good thing. Being on the other side of a former player kicking the complete crud out of you sucks beyond belief. Trust me, I'm a Philly fan. Ruslan Fedotanko alone has provided me more pain than most ex-players do to their former teams in a whole lifetime.

Now I love Ryan Howard, but if you live in a fantasy world where all things Ryan Howard and Phillies are great and Ruben Amaro, Jr. is a genius who can do no wrong and extending Ryan Howard is the best thing ever, I suggest you stop reading this now because what I am about to say may not make you very happy.

There are reasons to have reservations about this.

Ryan Howard is a physical specimen, I am not concerned about how he will age in 7 years. But I am concerned about the future of the rest of the Phillies.

Will the Phillies still be able to extend Werth and Rollins? MLB is filled with power first basemen who can hit 25 to 30 HRs each year. Sure Howard is in the upper-tier of those and his defense is constantly improving, but the Werths of the league and the Rollinss of the league are much more difficult to find. While Domonic Brown is projected to be a complete beast coming out of the minors, there is no guarantee with minor league prospects. Why make Howard the priority and why do it now when there are rarer, more valuable players on this team than Ryan Howard.

Having Howard is great and I love the guy (though truth be told, I'd do that Howard for Pujols trade in a heartbeat), but the question of why now sure comes into play. He's in the middle of a slump no less and it is a random day at the start of the 2010 baseball season. Why is this happening now and not in the off-season? Wouldn't Amaro and the Phillies be better off seeing how Howard progressed at least through this season and maybe even into next season before re-signing him? I can tell you right now they would have. Now I am not saying he is the next David Ortiz, but really, Howard is not a free agent until 2012, waiting and still getting keeping your guy is not the worst move in the world.

And what happens when Jayson Werth goes? The right-handed hitting presence in the middle of the order disappears instantly. Truth be told, if the Phillies could only extend one, either Ryan Howard or Jayson Werth, the better person to extend would be Werth. A power hitting 1st baseman is replaceable, the awesome beard, defense, and right-handed hitting ability in a line-up of lefties is not. You ask about Domonic Brown again? Dom Brown is yet another leftie.

Is re-signing Howard a bad thing, you ask, after reading this? No, it is not. As much as I just touted Werth, the Phillies will get more if they let him walk than they will if they let Howard walk and outfield is the deepest part of the Phillies farm whereas our only real 1B prospect is 19 and playing in the Gulf Coast League. I just hope the Phillies know what they are doing in terms of Werth and/or Werth's replacement and/or righties in the middle of the line up and that Ryan Howard does not become Philadelphia's next Danny Briere in a few years.

When Did E. Stan Kroenke Buy GM Place, HP Pavilion, And Mellon Arena?

What is it with these arena owners and them having little to no faith that their hockey team is going to advance past the first round of the playoffs? Last year it was the Denver Broncos and their fun little encounter with WWE, this year it is the Sharks, Canucks, Penguins, and musicians whose combined age must be 832 years old. All three of the arenas these teams play in could potentially host Games 1 and 2 of the Conference Semifinals while hosting other events.

For your schedule of incompetency, here is what is scheduled when at these three arenas.

HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA: An Eagles concert this Friday and Saturday. Welcome to the Hotel Schedule Conflict. Such a lovely place....

GM Place in Vancouver, BC: A Simon & Garfunkel concert this Thursday and a Brooks & Dunn (WHO???????) concert on Saturday. I know nothing about the latter, but if you want to listen to the Sounds of Silence, all you have to do is lock yourself in your room for a few hours. There's no need to go to a concert for it.

Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh, PA: Stars on Ice this Thursday. mean to say that a ticket has actually been bought for this? Couldn't they at least liven things up and bring back Yanni?

I have no idea what to say other than whomever books these things lack foresight or they just don't believe in the winningness of their hockey team. I know the Sharks expected to get bounced in the first round, but Vancouver and Pittsburgh? Really?

It's things like this that make you go, "wow, we really live in a world or morons, incompetent morons." Or possibly in a world of greedy arena owners who find ways to squeeze out as many pennies as they possibly can. The latter really is looking like a likely option, isn't it?

(Hat tip to From The Rink)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

April 25 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: One Last Howl?

Game 6: Phoenix @ Detroit 2:00 (NBC - Mike Emrick and Eddie Olczyk, ItG: Pierre McGuire) (TSN)

Game 6: Vancouver @ Los Angeles 9:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Lindsay Soto) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

"It Almost Seemed Like Antti Niemi Was Giving Birth There To That Puck"

After a hilarious sequence in which the puck got lost in the equipment of Antti Niemi for a couple minutes, Captain Tremendously Tremendous himself, Eddie Olczyk, delivers the greatest Stanley Cup playoffs one-liner since Joe Beninati's questioning of what OMG meant.

"It almost seemed like Antti Niemi was giving birth there to that puck." - Eddie Olczyk

No one liner that I can come up with will due that line any justice, Edzo.

The Blackhawks would go onto win that game in thrilling fashion, with Patrick Kane tying the game at 4 with 13 seconds left and Marian Hossa notching the game winner, mere seconds after he got out of the penalty box for a 5-minute major boarding call.

Taking A Look At The Rest Of The Eagles NFL Draft (WITH DIFFERENT FINAL GRADE)

See here for my analysis of Day 1 of the Eagles draft and here for my analysis of Day 2 of the Eagles draft.

I'll be honest, outside of the hot names from the first few rounds, I am not an expert on the players. Heck, most of them I've never heard of before. So instead of trying to look at each player and haplessly grade them, I will give my likes and dislikes of this draft based on overall trends.

Likes: The Eagles sured up their defense like none other in this draft, drafting CB Trevard Lindley, DE/SAM LB Ricky Sapp, and Jabar Chaney, a guy that most projected in the late 3rd/early 4th round with one projection going as high in the 2nd round, in the 7th round. That was a steal and a half.

The Eagles came into this draft needing to do nothing but add depth to RB, WR. They did exactly that to all three positions. Nothing fancy, no big coups, but pure solid depth. As mentioned earlier, they added competition for Hank Baskett's position as 4th receiver by drafting Riley Cooper, they drafted RB Charles Scott, likely signaling the end of Eldra Buckley's time in Philadelphia, and to top it off they got a developmental QB and their future back up in the form of Mike Kafka. He'll be 3rd stringer behind Vick this year but once Vick is gone at the end of the season, he'll be the solid #2 guy behind Kolb.

Dislikes: I have two big dislikes from today and this draft as a whole. The first one is some of the reaches. T'eo-Nesheim in the 3rd round and Keenan Clayton in the 4th round, both of whom could have been had in later rounds. That being said, I do know nothing about these players, so who knows, maybe Andy Reid and Howie Roseman see something the rest of the league does not. It would not be the first time Reid did that. Sometimes it pans out, other times it does not.

My only other dislike of this draft is no offensive linemen. With Jamaal Jackson likely out to start the year, it would have been nice to get an o-linemen or 2, if for no other reason, than just for depth. But the organization seems to be high on Mike McGlynn as well as Fenuki Tupou, so who knows. I still would have liked to have seen some depth, though, as offensive lineman is one of the best positions to have depth at. The Eagles may think they are fine Week 1, but what happens when people start getting hurt?

Overall draft grade: B. Graham and Allen will be automatic starters, with Graham beasting it up playing on the opposite of Trent Cole. Sapp will likely compete for a starting job, but seeing as he can play SAM and no other Eagle can, I am thinking he might be an automatic starter as well. The rest of the draft seemed to be a lot of depth. The Eagles traded down a lot on Day 2 and still got the guys they needed and supposedly targeted to begin with. The reaches and lack of an o-linemen bring this draft grade to a B, but other than, I do not have many complaints. It's not a flashy draft like last year's one was, but the Eagles did not have needs in flashy areas. I am confident that after this draft, the Eagles are a better team than they were on Wedensday. And that, my friends, is always a good thing.

Overall draft grade: A-. I thought it was a B draft until I saw exactly what the Eagles did with that 55th overall pick in the draft. They turned that one 2nd round pick in to 5 later round picks with 3 Day 2 trade downs and with those picks they got from those trade downs, they selected Clay Harbor, Ricky Sapp, Daniel T'eo-Neshaim, Mike Kafka, and Riley Cooper, and a 5th rounder in 2011. Sure they did not fill up the offensive line, but to turn one 2nd round pick into all of that? That my friends is how you work the NFL Draft. One 2nd roupd pick turned into a 2nd/3rd tight end (Harbor), a starting SAM linebacker (Sapp), a situational pass rusher (T'eo-Neshaim), a developmental and future backup QB (Kafka), and a 6'3" 4th/5th wide receiver who can run the ever-effective fade route (Cooper). My friends, if that is not an A+ draft clinic then I do not know what is. Bill Belichick would be in awe. Upon further reflection, the only knock I can give it is no pick was an offensive lineman. As far as the reaches go, well, considering some of the steals the Eagles got in the later rounds (Sapp could have easily been someone's 55th overall pick alone), it all cancels out. As much hell as I give Andy Reid for his gameday coaching decisions, when it comes to the draft, you can count on one hand the number of teams who know how to work the draft better than the Philadelphia Eagles.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Eagles Draft A Man Whose Decision Helped Bring Roy Halladay To The Phillies

Well this is one of the more bizarre stories you will ever come across in an NFL Draft. For the second time in his life, Riley Cooper was drafted by Philadelphia. Of course, the Eagles did not draft him twice. His last drafting by a Philadelphia team before today came in 2006 when the Phillies drafted him.

But the fun does not end there. Not only was Riley a 15th round draft pick for the Phillies (#457 overall), but if Riley Cooper did not go to Florida, things might be very different at Citizens Bank Park right now. How could a 15th round draft pick make such a difference? Check out this report on Cooper written June 9, 2006.

Cooper, 6 feet 4, 212 pounds, was rated by most recruiting services as a first-rounder when the spring began. He was touted for his blazing speed and raw power, shining in a number of showcases during the summer before his senior season.

But he sustained a season-ending injury in March when he was involved in a late-night scrape in Clearwater. Cooper sustained a deep cut to his right arm throwing a punch through a car window.

According to Larry Cooper, Philadelphia told him it was going to take Riley Cooper with the 18th overall pick in the draft before being talked out of it. "They were asking us if they drafted Riley in the first round, would he sign, and we said no," Larry Cooper said. "As of (Monday) night, they wanted to take us in the 10th-15th round and pay us first-round money and see if they can get us up in Philadelphia by the 25th. That's still their plan."

Riley Cooper said he will report to Gainesville on June 27. Gator football coach Urban Meyer was one of the first to call after his selection, to congratulate one of his prize recruits and make sure he won't wilt under the pressure from the Phillies to sign.

"I don't think so," Cooper said.
As I have already mentioned, Cooper was taken 457th overall, not 18th overall, and he committed to Florida, instead of signing with the Phillies. However, there is one last twist to this story.

The Phillies did make a selection with that 18th overall pick. With that pick in the draft, the Philadelphia Phillies selected Kyle Drabek. Kyle Drabek was recently traded to the Toronto Blue Jays for Roy Halladay.

My question is: what if Riley Cooper does not commit to Florida? Is he now a Toronto Blue Jay? Or would he not be the prospect Drabek is and in turn we would never get Halladay? Would the Phillies have traded top prospect Dom Brown instead? And where would that leave the farm?

Okay, so maybe there are some stretches there, but the coincidence that the Phillies wanted to draft a guy but did not because he wanted to play football in Florida and in turn drafted a guy that got traded to Toronto for Halladay and the guy the Phillies originally wanted to draft that went to Florida to play football is now an Eagle, is beyond amusing. Anyone that followed that last mega run-on sentence is my hero. For realz.

(Hat tip to Bleeding Green Nation)

NFL Draft Day 3 Live Blog

Here is your hockey Stanley Cup playoff vital information for the day

Game 5: Nashville @ Chicago 3:00 (NBC - Mike Emrick and Eddie Olczyk, Itg: Pierre McGuire) (TSN)

Game 6: Pittsburgh @ Ottawa 7:00 (Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healy, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Game 6: San Jose @ Colorado 10:00 (Versus) (CBC - Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes)

Eagles Get Their Man And A Ga Ga Ooh La la

While I celebrate the fact that the Flyers are still the only team in the 2nd round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, here is my good and bad from today's Eagles day in the NFL Draft.

The Good: Nate Allen. The Eagles needed a safety and they got what many are calling a safe bet in the NFL. He is a good cover guy who can also play corner if need be, but he is a safety first and safety is exactly where the Eagles should put him.

The Also Good: Andy Reid's House of Trades! May we take your draft picks? Good grief, after selecting Nate Allen, the Eagles traded down 3 times to garner what would total as a 3rd round draft pick, 4 4th round draft picks, 2 5ths, a 6th, and 2 7ths. In other words, we got picks like Andy Reid has cheesesteaks.

The Bad: Daniel Te'O Nesheim. Rated 2.0 out of 10 by, considered a 6th round prospect coming in, cited as an overachiever at the University of Washington, a position we no longer needed to fulfill right away when others still existed. Yeah. Thus far, this is the only skidmark on what has been a solid draft for the Eagles. To me, this is a classic case of Andy Reid trying to show the rest of the league that he is smarter then them, but really, there is little doubt in my mind he could have taken Te'O with one of his 4 4th round picks.

As far as tomorrow goes, I've got my eyes on Bruce Campbell, any center, any corner, a 5th string WR, and a 3rd string QB. Live blog tomorrow at 10. Be there or be square.


Friday, April 23, 2010

NFL Draft Day 2 Live Blog

I'm spending the night watching the draft but if you want to watch and talk about playoffs, feel free to do so. Here is the hockey schedule.

Montreal @ Washington 7:00 (Versus - Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Bob Harwood) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Boston @ Buffalo 7:00 (CBC - Dean Brown and Greg Millen, SR: Cassie Campbell)

Los Angeles @ Vancouver 10:00 (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

Detroit @ Phoenix 10:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Lindsay Soto) (TSN)

Jon Gruden Says A Naughty Word At The NFL Draft

When I heard this at the draft last night, I initially thought it was Kiper. But Mookie, whose initial thought was Gruden, was the one that got it right. Listen now as Jon Gruden goes on a rant about dumbasses before being cut of by Chris Berman to announce they are back on the air

"I said it's a crazy league, a lot of dumbass....." - Gruden

Haha. And even funnier than that was Mel Kiper laughing and Steve Young seemingly admonishing Gruden. It seemed like ESPN had a few problems of timing when Gruden, Jackson, and co. did not know they were back on the air when they actually were. That was not the only time something not meant to be heard over the air was in fact heard, but it was by far the funniest. ESPN might want to work on their production communications or else for all we know we could be treated to Chris Berman going crazy again.

So After Thinking About It A Bit.....

I've decided the Eagles made the right move by drafting Brandon Graham. When Tom Jackson calls you the best defensive player in a draft consisting of Ndamukong Suh and Eric Berry, you're a stud defensive end.

This is nowhere near as bad a pick as I once thought it was, mainly because I hardly ever heard of the guy before, and we passed up 2 of the guys I had my eye on and wanted the most in this draft (Earl Thomas and Kyle Wilson). And all in the process, gave up 2 3rd rounders while keeping both of their 2nd rounders, one of which is the 37th overall pick in the draft. Not to mention this pick completely stuck it to the Giants who had their eyes on Graham and were a sure bet to take him. Instead they end up with Jason Pierre-Paul. Brandon Graham >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> JPP.

The Eagles have pressing needs at safety and there are still 2 really high rated safeties available, Nate Allen and, dare I say it, Taylor Mays. If Allen gets taken and the Eagles do not want to take a chance on Mays (something I won't fault them for at all), offensive tackle Charles Brown would be a helluva steal at #37 for the Eagles, as they need some offensive line help as well as help in the secondary.

Off-topic, but it must be said, FLYERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHOOHOO!!!! 1ST TEAM TO ADVANCE TO THE SECOND ROUND! HELLZ YEAH, BITCHES!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Eagles Draft Brandon Graham


Okay, maybe not really. Here's the good and the bad real quick.

The good: Tom Jackson called him the best defensive player in the draft. That's high praise from a man who knows what he is talking about. Graham is a hybrid type player and can play either DE or OLB. Look for the Eagles to use him opposite Trent Cole.

The bad: The Eagles traded up for this pick and in doing so,ignored a glaring need in their secondary. They need a CB and they need a safety, and once they traded up, they had Earl Thomas and/or Kyle Wilson at their fingertips and they blew it. They had their guys and instead they took Graham. The opposite of this is a deadly pass rush can help the secondary out a bit, but it starts to become a bit of a problem when you don't have a physical body back there. And now the Cowboys drafted Dez Bryant. Yeah we're screwed this year.

NFL Draft Day 1 And April 22 Stanley Cup Playoffs Live Blog: Fighting For Life Begins

Philadelphia @ New Jersey 7:00 (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

Ottawa @ Pittsburgh 7:00 (Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healy, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Chicago @ Nashville 8:30 (Versus) (TSN2)

Colorado @ San Jose 10:30 (Versus) (CBC - Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes)

NCAA Announces Expanded Basketball Tourney, New TV Deal

For those that have not heard the news yet (and if you haven't been under a rock all day, chances are you have), the NCAA announced a new, expanded tournament and a new television deal.

Are you ready for a field of 68 do battle on CBS, TBS, TNT, and TruTV? I sure as heck am! No field of 96 and no ESPN! Thank goodness! It's 68 and CBS/Turner. This I can happily live with. Here are some of the details from USA Today.

The new deal with CBS and Turner will spread NCAA tournament games across four networks -- CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV -- starting next March. CBS and Turner will share coverage of regional semifinals, and CBS will carry regional finals and Final Four games through 2015. All games will be available on live TV instead of CBS switching back and forth.

CBS and TNT say all NCAA tournament games will continue to be streamed live online.

Starting in 2016, CBS and Turner will share regional final coverage and alternate carrying the tournament semifinals and championship game (on CBS and Turner's TBS).
The NCAA is opting out of the final three years of a current 11-year, $6 billion contract with CBS.

The new deal will pay $10.86 billion -- nearly $776 million a year -- for the men's basketball tournament, and additional payments for digital and other new media rights will push the total value past $11 billion. It is a 42% increase over CBS' average rights fee in its old NCAA TV deal.

That's atop a current agreement with ESPN for the women's basketball tournament, College World Series and 20 other NCAA championships worth $55 million over the next three years. Negotiations are underway for the rights to 60-plus other NCAA championships.
It is still unknown what the final bracket will look like, but this is the new TV deal that I can be happy about.

As far as what announcers are going to be used for the tournament, that is something that will likely be up in the air and unknown until March. Although I must say that I am curious as to who Turner will be using, if they will use their own people, use the people that CBS has been using, or some hybrid of the two. Kevin Harlan and Ian Eagle, both of whom have been recent fixtures on the NCAA Tournament with CBS, have been working these NBA Playoffs. My only fear is we will have to listen to Dick Stockton perform a task that closely resembles announcing the NCAA Tournament.

Regardless, every tournament game will now be on national TV, every game will still be legally streamed online, and we do not have a field of 96. Is it just me or has the NCAA actually done something right?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

April 21 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: Get Your Hands Away From The Panic Button!

Washington @ Montreal 7:00 (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Buffalo @ Boston 7:00 (Versus - Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Bob Harwood) (CBC - Dean Brown and Greg Millen, SR: Cassie Campbell)

Vancouver @ Los Angeles 10:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Lindsay Soto) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

Somebod Please Find Me The Nearest Bridge I Can Jump Off Of

Me. Bridge. Death.

Both Simon Gagne and Jeff Carter are getting foot surgery after their injuries last night. Gagne is going to be out 3 weeks. Carter is out indefinitely.

Sure Gagne has had a hard luck series with little production and Carter could not find much of a groove until last night, but their presence and their threat on the team will be missed. Ville Leino showed promise in the few games he saw at the end of the year, but Phantom call up David Laliberte has the fear of the unknown riding at an all time high. He played in a few games at the beginning of the year and did manage 2 goals in 10 games, but he is a scorer who is going to be asked to fill the role of a grinder. They would have been better off calling up Nodl, in my opinion, but there is going to be plenty of time to change their mind if the Flyers can finish off New Jersey. But I am now worried and fear that even if we beat the Devils, that our chances of losing in the next round have increased tenfold.

Me. Bridge. Death.

Pro Football Weekly's Latest Mock Draft Has An Interesting Choice For The Eagles At #24 Overall

24. Philadelphia Eagles
QB Tim Tebow, Florida

The careers of team president Joe Banner and GM Howie Roseman share some commonalities with Tebow's — a dogged determination defying the odds. As each day draws closer and NFL teams come to grips with the reality that is their NFL rosters, the value of quarterbacks in this draft continues to creep up, and by the time the draft kicks off in prime time, there is a very realistic chance of Tebow fitting into the first round. The Eagles had the deepest pool of talent at the QB position prior to dealing Donovan McNabb within the division and now have a vacancy with which to welcome Tebow with open arms. Banner's greatest strength has been preparing for the future, and if Kolb's contract can be extended now that McNabb is out of the picture, it will position the Eagles to deal him after developing Tebow for three years and give the Eagles another measure of protection, not to mention motivation for Kolb. Peria Jerry signed a five-year conract [sic!] totaling $13.25 million in this slot a year ago, with a more realistic value of $10.35 million over five years given incentives. If the Tebow experiment does not work out, the Eagles might be able to justify a $2 million annual salary in jersey sales. And given time to work his magic, Andy Reid has the incubator to build Tebow into a winner.
Uh........words can't describe this. The Eagles are going to forget about all of their pressing needs and select Tim Tebow. In the first round. I see.

Now if Tim Tebow drops to the 4th round or something, then yeah, think about taking Tebow as a QB to develop because the Eagles will likely be taking a 3rd string emergency QB at some point. But in the first round? When you have needs at safety, CB, D-line, and O-line? Incredibly nonsensical.

Also in this clusterfuck of a mock draft: Ndamukong Suh falls to Kansas City at #5, Earl Thomas falls all the way to #22 and New England.

After ripping apart this mock draft, all of this is now definitely going to come to life. Eagles will not trade up and take Tebow and Suh and Thomas will both fall. Such will be my life tomorrow, right?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

2010 Eagles And Primetime NFL Schedules

Personally, I am not a fan of evaluating how difficult a schedule is 2 days before the NFL Draft, but the schedules were released today so for that much, I will post them. Here below is the Eagles schedule, as well as the Sunday Night Football schedule, Monday Night Football Schedule, and Thursday Night Football schedule.


September 12: vs. Green Bay 4:15 (Fox)
September 19: @ Detroit 1:00 (Fox)
September 26: @ Jacksonville 4:05 (Fox)
October 3: vs. Washington 4:15 (Fox) (<-- OMG MCNABB BOWL)
October 10: @ San Francisco 8:20 (NBC)
October 17: vs. Atlanta 1:00 (Fox)
October 24: @ Tennessee 1:00 (Fox)
November 7: vs. Indianapolis 4:15 (CBS)
November 15: @ Washington 8:30 (ESPN) (<-- OMG IT'S ANOTHER MCNABB BOWL)
November 21: vs. New York Giants 8:20 (NBC)
November 28: @ Chicago 1:00 (Fox)
December 2: vs. Houston 8:20 (NFL Network)
December 12: @ Dallas 8:20 (NBC)
December 19: @ New York Giants 1:00 (Fox)
December 26: vs. Minnesota 1:00 (Fox)
January 2: vs. Dallas 1:00 (Fox)

Sunday Night Football (all games at 8:20 unless otherwise noted)

September 9: Minnesota vs. New Orleans 8:30
September 12: Dallas vs. Washington
September 19: New York Giants vs. Indianapolis
September 26: New York Jets vs. Miami
October 3: Chicago vs. New York Giants
October 10: Philadelphia vs. San Francisco
October 17: Indianapolis vs. Washington
October 24: Minnesota vs. Green Bay (<-- OMG A FAVRE BOWL)
October 31: Pittsburgh vs. New Orleans
November 7: Dallas vs. Green Bay
November 14: Pittsburgh vs. New England
November 21: New York Giants vs. Philadelphia (1st Flexible Game)
November 28: San Diego vs. Indianapolis
December 5: Pittsburgh vs. Baltimore
December 12: Philadelphia vs. Dallas
December 19: Green Bay vs. New England
December 26: Cincinnati vs. San Diego

As always, no SNF game is even penciled in for Week 17. That decision will be made by December 27.

Monday Night Football (all games at 8:30 unless otherwise noted)

September 13: Baltimore vs. New York Jets 7:00
September 13: San Diego vs. Kansas City 10:15
September 20: New Orleans vs. San Francisco
September 27: Green Bay vs. Chicago
October 4: New England vs. Miami
October 11: Minnesota vs. New York Jets
October 18: Tennessee vs. Jacksonville
October 25: New York Giants vs. Dallas
November 1: Houston vs. Indianapolis
November 8: Pittsburgh vs. Cincinnati
November 15: Philadelphia vs. Washington (<-- OMG MNF MCNABB BOWL THIS GUY WILL MAKE IT GREAT)
November 22: Denver vs. San Diego
November 29: San Francisco vs. Arizona
December 6: New York Jets vs. New England
December 13: Baltimore vs. Houston
December 20: Chicago vs. Minnesota
December 27: New Orleans vs. Atlanta

Thursday Night Football Schedule (all games at 8:00 unless otherwise noted)

November 11: Baltimore vs. Atlanta
November 18: Chicago vs. Miami
November 25: Cincinnati vs. New York Jets
December 2: Houston vs. Philadelphia
December 9: Indianapolis vs. Tennessee
December 16: San Francisco vs. San Diego
December 23: Carolina vs. Pittsburgh
December 25: Dallas vs. Arizona 7:30

I've seen numerous schedules where the Eagles had 5 primetime games in a season, but I don't ever recall one where they were giving 6 right from the get-go like they were this year. And the funny thing is, I can't even tell you if this is going to be a playoff team or not. They have gotten considerably younger and I have absolutely no idea what to expect from this team now, mainly because, our oldest player is Juqua Parker and he (ironically) got off on a pot charge yesterday (April 20). Oh, and Juqua is not exactly Brett Favre old. He's 31.

Aspeaking of football, do join us as we live blog the entire NFL Draft, which on Thursday will consist of me trying (and likely failing) to follow and talk about both the draft and the Flyers game, which starts 30 minutes before the Draft.

April 20 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: Pot Leafs Aren't Appearing In The Middle Of The Ice, Right?

Game 4: Phoenix @ Detroit 6:30 (TSN - Gord Miller, Itg: Pierre McGuire)

Game 4: Pittsburgh @ Ottawa 7:00 (Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healy, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Game 4: New Jersey @ Philadelphia 7:30 (TSN2)

Game 3: Chicago @ Nashville 9:00 (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

Game 4: San Jose @ Colorado 10:00 (Versus) (CBC - Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes)

On This Day In 1999: A Forgotten Day Of Infamy

For all the talk about the tragedy of 9/11, it is frequently forgotten what transpired on the events of April 20, 1999.

I think it is only right that we all take a moment today to think about and reflect on the Columbine Massacre of 11 years ago and everyone whose life was affected by it.

Flying Athletic Crotch Cups FTW!

This story is beyond bizarre. Generally, I'd lead it in with something, but instead, I'll just post the link to the San Jose Mercury News and let you read about this on your own.

In the bottom of the 12th inning Friday, with Eli Whiteside at the plate and Sandoval dancing off 3rd base with the possible winning run, it hit me.

Panda’s athletic cup.

In the head.

In 25 years of photographing baseball, that was the first, and please, last time that’s ever happened.

I had been shooting from the photo well next to the Giants dugout on the 3rd baseline when Sandoval was running the bags during the Giants’ comeback. He seemed uncomfortable though, and started fussing with his belt when he got to 3rd.

After I turned my attention back to home plate to shoot the batter, something hits me in the head.

Nearby fans gasped, and then groaned.

The Panda’s cup is sitting untouched behind me in full radioactive glory.

Mercifully, trainer Dave Groeschner comes over wearing Sandoval’s glove, and retrieves the offending blue projectile.

Glad I was wearing a hat.
A photographer at the game sent an email to the SJMS and that is how that got in the paper.

For all the talk about the poor guy getting hit in the head with an athletic cup, I have a question for you, why on earth is Kung Fu Panda launching his cup???? And secondly, how on earth did they get that thing out of here. I mean, if I were a rationally sane person at the game, there is no way I am touching something that was near Pablo Sandoval's crotch with a 10-foot pole, let alone handle it into the place it needs to be handled.

Oh boy. That last sentence is just awful, isn't it?

Monday, April 19, 2010

2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs: Videos Of Confused And Screaming Announcers Calling An Own Goal Will Be Made

Remember last summer when the Mets were sucking and Luis Castillo dropped a pop-up that would have won the game for the Mets, but instead because he dropped it allowed the Yankees to score 2 runs on that play and thus win the game? And remember how MLB put together an awesome announcing mash-up of the Mets TV announcers and radio announcers and the Yankees TV announcers and radio announcers calling the play?

Granted I don't have the technology to mash them all into one video, but with a play as epic as Dan Boyle's own goal last night, I figured why not put together all of the calls of the goal that I could find. Several videos have gone up and the one with the most views already has over 200,000 of them (Dan, you've gone viral, my friend). Trust me, the different reactions to the goal are almost as amusing as the goal itself. Almost.

First off, the one you've probably seen already and the one that I posted last night/this morning: The Versus broadcast (which used the CSN-Cal Sharks announcers) with Randy Hahn and Drew Remenda.

And now the broadcast team that does not put it all on Dan Boyle, the Colorado Avalanche TV broadcasters Mike Haynes and Peter McNab

Up next, the lone neutral broadcast of the bunch, the CBC broadcast with Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes:

If only Versus had stuck with the broadcast for that long to see that ovation for Craig Anderson. Wow. That is something special and something that he will never forget. Tip your hat, Craig. You (maybe not the rest of the Avalance team, but you) deserve it.

And now for my personal favorite. If this guy (Marc Moser) does not end up right next to Al Michaels in the hockey hall of fame for this awesomely screaming call of the goal, then something is seriously wrong in this world.



Actually, on second thought, no, please, continue screaming, that call is flat out epic.

And as if I did not pile on more Dan Boyle enough for this, here are 2 History Will Be Made parodies commemorating Dan Boyle.

This one is just all sorts of awesome, not only does it have a funny tag but it brings back my new favorite screaming announcer, Marc Moser!

And lastly, my personal favorite, which may even get some Sharks fans and serious Shark sympathizers laughing.

April 19 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: Breaking Ties

Game 3: Washington @ Montreal 7:00 (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Game 3: Buffalo @ Boston 7:00 (Versus - Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Bob Harwood) (CBC - Dean Brown and Greg Millen, SR: Cassie Campbell)

Game 3: Vancouver @ Los Angeles 10:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Lindsay Soto) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

Some Eagles News, Notes, And Draft Commentary

With all of the playoff hockey going on right now, the NFL Draft this Thursday has gotten a bit lost in the shuffle of things. But alas, the Eagles resumed their wheeling and dealing today, finding themselves in the midst of a three-way deal that saw them give up a 5th round draft pick while getting a starting linebacker, Ernie Sims. From

The Philadelphia Eagles, Denver Broncos and Detroit Lions have pulled off a three-way trade, with the Lions obtaining former Broncos tight end Tony Scheffler and the Eagles receiving ex-Lions linebacker Ernie Sims.

The Eagles sent a fifth-round pick in this week's draft to the Broncos, while Denver sent its seventh-round pick to the Lions to complete the trade on Monday.

In 59 career games, all with the Lions, Sims has been credited with 420 tackles including 2.5 sacks, four forced fumbles and one interception. He was credited with 49 tackles last season.

"Ernie Sims is an impact player at the linebacker position," Eagles coach Andy Reid said. "He brings a lot of energy to our already energized defense. We are looking forward to adding him to our team."
In the simplest form, the Eagles just traded a 5th round draft pick for a proven starting linebacker. Thus it goes without say that this is a massive steal for the Eagles and a great trade for them. Sims was a bit nicked up last year, true, but it was felt by many that he was not a good fit in Detroit's system whereas he will be much better for the Eagles. Of course, that trade leaves the Eagles with 10 draft picks for the 2010 draft (but they still have 5 in the top 87 in a very deep draft class), so the question naturally becomes what to do with them. The Eagles first pick is #24 overall and there are a lot of enticing options. Adam Schefter tweeted the following earlier today: "Packers, Eagles have expressed interest in trading up to 10-12 range. But it could depend on how board falls. Good prospects everywhere."

I'm not going to argue with him because as I mentioned above, this is a very deep draft class. The Eagles 2 glaring needs above all else are S and CB. The Eagles have what it will take to trade up in this year's draft, but if they do it, it will be for the right person.

In this case, there is only one right person the Eagles can trade up for: Eric Berry. Will he make it down to 10 is a mystery but if you are the Eagles, you have to do everything in your power to trade up for Eric Berry. He is your guy. You may have to go up higher than 10 to 12, but you have to make sure that you get your guy, and Berry is the Eagles' guy. The other options, if you are sticking in the 10-12 range is Earl Thomas, but 10 to 12 might be too high for him. Besides, he is at best unpolished, and the Eagles need someone who can come in and start for them now. That guy is Tennessee Safety Eric Berry. I would not be majorly pissed if the Eagles end up with Thomas, but if they have a chance to get Berry, they need to get him. Actually, if the Eagles do trade up with Berry still on the board and they draft Earl Thomas instead I will cry tears of great sorrow.

Berry is the only guy the Eagles I would like to see the Eagles trade up for, that being said, given Schefter's range, it does seem like it might be too low for Berry but too high for Thomas. I do worry that the Eagles might actually thinking about trading up for......(*gasp*) Joe Haden. Joe Haden is nothing but hype and if the Eagles take a chance and draft him I will cry great tears of sorrow.

Now if the Eagles don't trade up (likely the smartest thing if you don't get Berry), I see two very good possibilities at #24. The first one is the guy who I see as one of, if not the, best cornerback in the draft, Kyle Wilson. Now he's a CB who I would love to see in midnight green and a CB that I think can come in and start playing right away. Another option that I really like at #24 is Mike Iupati. The Eagles do need an offensive lineman, and when it comes to OL, I have a literal hard-on for him. He will likely be available at 24 if the Eagles elect not to trade up for a DB.

As far as draft day itself goes, yes, there will be a live blog of the entire NFL Draft, but on Thursday, I have a problem. The draft starts at 7:30. The Flyers play Game 5 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series at 7:00. What will happen is I will watch the 1st period of the hockey game, flip to ESPN and/or NFL Network (I have not decided what network's coverage I am watching yet) just in time to see Sam Bradford in a Rams uniform, then flip back and forth like a madman between hockey game and draft until the hockey game ends and I can focus solely on the draft.

The Funniest Overtime Ending You Will Ever Seen

(Video originally posted at Broad Street Hockey)

If I said at the beginning of the playoffs that a team will score an own goal in overtime to lose a game for his team, please name it, chances are, you would have said the team it actually happened to. Words can't describe the bizarre hilarity of this.

Don't get me wrong, I don't hate the Sharks, I don't wish ill upon them, and my heart goes out to Dan Boyle who must be beyond sick right now, but good grief, this is just flat out hilarious. The team with the reputation of choking in the playoffs has come up with 2 all-timers in the past week, and frankly, I think this one takes the cake. I have never seen anything like this in my life. Wow.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Martin Brodeur stood on his head for the 3rd period and overtime in this again. The rest of the Devils stood around and did nothing to help him as the Flyers dominated the flow of play and the forecheck. Despite the fact that this was one of the worst officiated playoff games I have ever seen, that does not change the fact that the team that played the better all-around hockey game was the team that won this game. Heck, if not for the man between the pipes, Martin Brodeur, this game would have been a wash.

The Devils spent significantly more time on the PP and were still outshot by the Flyers. In fact, their 2 goals in the game were both on the PP. That does not mean the Flyers PK was bad though. No, they successfully killed off the other 6 and the Devils averaged less than a shot per PP while the Flyers averaged 2 shots per PP. If not for Brodeur, this game could have easily been 5-2 or 6-2 Flyers. Brian Boucher played solid like expected. He did not make any big saves but he did not need to. The 2 Devils goals were both screens on the PP that he could not have done anything about. The Flyers now lead the series 2-1 and will hope to extend that to 3-1 on Tuesday night when the two teams meet for Game 4.

April 18 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: JR!!!

We've got JR on NBC again and the Flyers playing at 6. Let's make this our day. LET'S GO FLYERS!!!

Game 3: Phoenix @ Detroit 3:00 (NBC - Mike Emrick and Eddie Olczyk, ItG: Mike Milbury) (TSN)

Game 3: New Jersey @ Philadelphia 6:00 (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Game 3: Pittsburgh @ Ottawa 6:30 (Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healy, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Game 2: Nashville @ Chicago 8:30 (Versus) (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

Game 3: San Jose @ Colorado 9:30 (Versus) (CBC - Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Chris Wheeler Congratulates A Non-Existent Pitcher On A No-Hitter

While Usama Jimenez may not exist, Ubaldo Jimenez does and he did throw the season's and the season's and the Rockies franchise 1st no hitter today. Congrats to Ubaldo on an amazing accomplishment, which for better or worse, will eventually to be trumped by one of the most incredible things I have ever seen.

April 17 Stanley Cup Playoffs Open Thread: More NBC Millercles!

Game 2: Boston @ Buffalo 1:00 (NBC - Mike Emrick and Eddie Olczyk, Itg: Darren Pang) (CBC - Dean Brown and Greg Millen, SR: Cassie Campbell)

Game 2: Montreal @ Washington 7:00 (Versus - Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Bob Harwood) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Game 2: Los Angeles @ Vancouver 10:00 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

Seeing as we've still got an hour to kill before the next hockey game, I figured I would introduce you to this NHL on NBC from a couple weeks ago that for some strange reason, did not make the airwaves.....

Friday, April 16, 2010

April 16 Playoffs Open Thread: Fan Wars

For realz.

Game 2: April 16: Ottawa @ Pittsburgh 7:00 (Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healy, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Game 2: Philadelphia @ New Jersey 7:30 (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

Game 1: Nashville @ Chicago 8:30 (Versus) (TSN2)

Game 2: Detroit @ Phoenix 10:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Bob Harwood) (TSN)

Game 2: Colorado @ San Jose 10:30 (Versus) (CBC - Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes)

Fun Things Everyone Should Try At A Ballpark: Making A Great Foul Ball Catch

With all the bad publicity that is sure to be given to Phillies fans because of VomitGate, I figured it would be nice to show a change of pace to show a much more positive video. Here's a video from last night's Nationals-Phillies game (1 day after VomitGate happened) of a Phillies fan making a tremendous foul ball catch and giving the ball to his son.

So why did a seemingly random video of an albeit terrific foul ball catch by a fan end up on YouTube with over 2,000 views in less than 24 hours? That's Drexel University professor and Philadelphia Phillies blogger David S. Cohen. For those not familiar, Cohen is one of the blog managers of SB Nation's (yep, SB Nation again) The Good Phight. As soon as he posted that vid of his experience, it spread quickly throughout the blogosphere (about as quickly as VomitGate did). So congrats to David on that fine catch and I am sure his son now has a baseball memory that will last a lifetime.

Fun Things Everyone Should Try At A Ballpark: Intentionally Vomiting On An 11-year Old Girl

While I sort of danced around this point in the last post through way-too-easy jokes about bandwagon Caps fans, it holds more water in this much more serious offensive fan post: one drunken moron does not a fan base represent. I may have had some fun making fun of a Caps fan who got caught on Canadian national TV for harmlessly pantomiming the moon, but this bit of fan unruliness from the Nationals-Phillies game on Wednesday night is really a toss up between one of the following: despicable act at a stadium or most despicable act at a stadium.

Meet Phillies "fan" Matthew Clemens. His idea of a good time? Going to a Phillies game, shouting constant vulgarities, drinking way too much, and intentionally vomiting on an 11-year old girl. Wait, was that last one?

I hope Mr. Clemens has a heck of a good time in jail. Seriously......what on earth is running through your mind, even at levels of epic intoxication, that make you think, "oh, I think I will stick my finger down my throat and vomit on this 11-year old girl."

As far as the vulgarities and lots of alcohol go, I think you can expect that just about anywhere. I will make a point crystal clear that people in the mainstream media will likely fail to get: Matthew Clemens is a jerk, a dumbass, a doofus, and a douche bag all wrapped into one. Philadelphia fans are not Matthew Clemens.

Now that we've got that out of the way, I will now announce my plan to go to Yankees Stadium this weekend and urinate on a toddler. Who's with me?

(Hat tip to Big League Stew and NBC Philadelphia)

This Caps Fan Takes Losing A Game 1 A Bit Too Far

I'm sure this is not the only ridiculous video of a crazy, pissed off fan that I will be posting from the Montreal-Washington series. No offense to any of my online friends who are Caps fans, I am not thinking of you when I says these things, but in a series involving two of hockey's most insufferable fan bases (hence last night's live blog title; fans of the punk rock band Rise Against might have been the only ones who fully got that), this drunken Caps fan scores a point to give the Caps fans the early lead in the "Who Can Have More Douche Bag Fans In One Series" competition.

Thank goodness Joe Buck does not call hockey games.

Anyways, yes, I am aware that one drunken idiot is just that, one drunken idiot, but seriously here. When you are dealing with 2 of the most insufferable hockey fan bases in the same series (you can add Pittsburgh, Detroit, and the Rangers to that list as well; I'd include Devils fans but they don't have enough fans to form a base) and someone does that and gets on TSN, it is going to get on here and I am going to take cheap shots at the entire group because frankly, it's too easy. Actually, come to think of it, he probably mouthed off f-bombs and pantomimed the moon because he thought the Caps had just been eliminated from the playoffs. Most members of The Bandwagon are probably not used to this whole 7 games in a hockey series deal. It's a foreign concept to them. Really. Look at this way, though,he has come all the way from last month when he learned for the first time who the great Oaf Koolaid was. Baby steps here, people. Baby steps.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Philadelphia Union Vs. Toronto FC And April 15 Playoffs: The Insufferable And The Witness Live Blog

PU-TFC game starts at 7:00 on ESPN2, here's the schedule of hockey games for the day

Game 1: Montreal @ Washington 7:00 (Versus - Sam Rosen and Billy Jaffe, SR: Bob Harwood) (TSN - Gord Miller, ItG: Pierre McGuire)

Game 1: Boston @ Buffalo 7:00 (CBC - Dean Brown and Greg Millen, SR: Cassie Campbell)

Game 1: April 15: Los Angeles @ Vancouver 10:00 (Versus) (CBC - Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson, SR: Scott Oake)

Throw The Snake Gets It's Own Segment On HNIC's iDesk

You've seen me throw around the phrase Throw The Snake all week long both here and on Twitter. If you are not sure what I am talking about, read this Puck Daddy article first before proceeding. While reading, make you take duel notes of the roles of the names Chemmy and Travis Hair.

Now that you are all caught up on what this is about, you will then understand the greatness of this mention during the first intermission of the Avs-Sharks game by the folks at the Hockey Night In Canada (HNIC) iDesk when discussing the snake(s) that got thrown when the Coyotes scored their first goal.

Now that is the definition of awesome. I am sure SB Nation blogs have been mentioned on national TV before, it is not like this is a little unknown network of blogs we are dealing with here, but I would be surprised if this is not one of the bigger coups in the history of SB Nation. A meme started by 2 blogs just got 2 minutes worth of airtime on Hockey Night In Canada. Wow. How awesome is that.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

April 14 Playoffs Open Thread: FLYERS!!!!! And Throw The Snake

I'll be out until 8, but that should not stop you from commenting in this open thread!

Game 1: April 14: Ottawa @ Pittsburgh 7:00 (Versus - John Forslund and Darren Eliot, SR: Charissa Thompson) (CBC - Bob Cole and Garry Galley, ItG: Glenn Healy, SR: Elliotte Friedman)

Game 1: April 14: Philadelphia @ New Jersey 7:30 (TSN - Chris Cuthbert, ItG: Ray Ferraro)

Game 1: April 14: Detroit @ Phoenix 10:00 (Versus - Rick Peckham and Daryl Reaugh, SR: Bob Harwood) (TSN)

Game 1: April 14: Colorado @ San Jose 10:30 (Versus: JIP) (CBC - Mark Lee and Kevin Weekes)

Update: While no snakes were thrown at the beginning of the game, when the Yotes tied the game at 1, snakes were thrown. Seeing as Chemmy of PPP started the idea, I should use his screenshot as evidence of the best image in the history of hockey.

Google Gets Into Advertising For The Stanley Cup Playoffs

Later today, the Stanley Cup Playoffs will begin. During the last major American championship, you might remember that Google ran a commercial. That commercial, of course, depicted a story about Paris and all that mushy romance shit. Well, now they are really stepping up their game. Google has just released a new series of similar ads, only instead of a French romance, they advertise the Conference Quarterfinals of the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs. They have put them up on YouTube for everyone to preview and watch already before they debut tonight during the first day of the playoffs.* Sit back, relax, and enjoy the 8 best hockey ads you will ever see!

#8 Montreal Canadiens vs. #1 Washington Capitals

#7 Philadelphia Flyers vs. #2 New Jersey Devils

#6 Boston Bruins vs. #6 Buffalo Sabres

#5 Ottawa Senators vs. #4 Pittsburgh Penguins

#8 Colorado Avalanche vs. #1 San Jose Sharks

#7 Nashville Predators vs. #2 Chicago Blackhawks

#6 Los Angeles Kings vs. #3 Vancouver Olympics

#5 Detroit Red Wings vs. #4 Phoenix Coyotes

*Please. Note. Sarcasm. I made these myself by simply going to for shits and giggles and posted them here to entertain you. These are not real commercials. They will not air in front of a national audience tonight on Versus. Though if they would it would be totes awesome. Especially that one about the Sharks choking. Making fun of a team like that in a national TV ad is what is missing from this great society of ours.