Monday, October 31, 2005

 

Christian Quits WWE...

September 1998, Breakdown PPV. Edge vs. Owen Hart. It's in Hamilton, Ontario and I'm in the crowd with three buddies. All of us made trips to indy shows around the area in the previous year or so. We knew Edge as Sexton Hardcastle in those days. So we're watching the match, it's going good and then suddenly somebody runs into the ring that kinda looks like Edge. People are standing up, I manage to get a good look and I yell out: "It's Christian Cage!" People were looking at me like I was nuts (I am, I can admit it). So everybody is wondering who the hell that is. I'm like: "His name is Christian Cage! He's from around here!" So then after everybody sits down, we're standing up like a bunch of nerds chanting "Christian Cage! Christian Cage!" with everybody looking at us. Didn't pick up on TV though as we were like 20 rows back. Still, it was awesome to see his first appearance in WWE. One of my favorite live moments as a fan.

He's always been one of my favorite wrestlers because I was lucky to get the chance to meet him in his indy days. You could tell back then when he was in his early 20s and the skinniest wrestler you've ever seen that he would be a success. I think he is, despite what WWE may think.

This guy rules and I will always support him no matter where he works. He's a hometown boy done good. Very proud of him.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

 

NFL Week 8 Picks

Season: 65-37

Last Week: 9-5

Arizona at Dallas *
The Cards are just horrible. No running game, no OLine and questionable play everywhere else. Aside from Fitzgerald and Boldin they literally have no stars on their team at all. Dallas is tough at home, so even without JJones in the backfield I expect them to win huge. Cowboys 27-7.

Chicago at Detroit *

No idea. This division is such a mess, the teams are so limited and I have no confidence in picking any team from this division ever. The Bears have a really strong D, but the Lions D isn't horrible by any means. You'd think that maybe they'd be hurt this week without DT Rogers and CB Bly, but aside from Thomas Jones there's nobody on the Bears to really hurt them. I think the Lions win a very close game because Jeff Garcia is more of a difference maker than Kyle Orton and will make enough plays to win. Lions 17-16.


* Cleveland at Houston

I'm not picking Houston ever. Romeo Crennel will come up with the defense to fuck up the Texans offense. But really, do you need a defense to fuck up that offense at this point? Browns 20-13.


Green Bay at Cincinnati

I like the Bengals big. They're still not better than the Steelers, but they can certainly beat the bad teams when they get them. Pack just have too many injuries and were not that good this year to begin with. Bengals 34-17.


Jacksonville at St. Louis

Sigh. It pains me to do this, but I have to pick against my Rams. There's just too many injuries. They're without arguably their four best players in Holt, Bulger, Bruce and Little (he's officially out again), all of whom have had Pro Bowl years. (I'd throw Pace and Jackson in ahead of Bruce on the valuable list, but you know what I mean.) It sucks. The one positive is they've shown more of a dedication to run Jacko sans Martz, so maybe they can run some ball control type offense. The Jags run D isn't THAT impressive as they give 120 rush yards per game (the Rams is at 113 YPG). It's their pass D that is awesome. Nobody passes well on them, not even Indy. So with Jamie Martin back there I'm definitely worried. Not about sacks necessarily, but picks. The other thing is the Jags red zone D is awesome. Since the Jags offense doesn't scare me, I think it's a low scoring game that the Jags manage to pull out because they will make more plays on D. Jaguars 16-14.


Minnesota at Carolina

Some people are starting to believe in Minnesota after last week's win. I am not one of those people. Panthers win big thanks to like 200 yards from Steve Smith. Panthers 31-14.


Oakland at Tennessee

I still don't believe in Oakland that much. Their secondary is horrible, their front seven is nothing special and I think the Titans play much better at home than they do on the road. Thus, Titans in a small upset. Titans 20-17.


Washington at N.Y. Giants

Should be pretty good. The teams are evenly matched with the Giants offense being slightly better on O and the Skins being better on D. I just think the Skins will be able to slow them down enough while the Giants will have their hands full trying to stop Portis (see his outfit this week? He's nuts) and Moss down the field. Very impressed by both teams. When it comes time to pick and I see Burress is banged up for the Giants, that makes me pick the Skins. It's those injuries that make the difference when a game is so close. Redskins 24-20.


Kansas City at San Diego

Lots of running in this game. Since the Chargers are at home and the Chiefs run D isn't all that impressive, that means I like Tomlinson to have a big day after last week's poor effort. Chargers 27-21.


Miami at New Orleans (Baton Rouge, LA)

Just like I won't pick Houston, I doubt I'll pick New Orleans again. They've got the combination of bad luck (ask Haslett about chickenshit calls), plus a lack of talent. As bad as Frerrotte or Rosenfels is, at least they can run. Saints can't run and since the Dolphins D is still good I think they do enough to eek out a win. Dolphins 14-13.


Philadelphia at Denver

I've learned my lesson. Don't pick against Denver at home. I won't. Broncos 26-20.


Tampa Bay at San Francisco
Cadillac is back, SF blows. Bucs win easy. Have fun Ken Dorsey. Bucs 28-3.

Buffalo at New England

The Pats are coming off a bye, Bruschi is back and it's a primetime game. I don't see Kelly Holcomb lighting them up either. Comfy win for the Pats. Patriots 34-13.

Baltimore at Pittsburgh

Blowout city. Baltimore's D is without Lewis and Reed, but even if they played they would get killed because their offense is so bad. Steelers 27-3.

I stopped doing my four against the spread thing. I stopped betting against the spread. I think it's wise.


Friday, October 28, 2005

 

2005-06 NBA Predictions

2005-06 NBA Predictions

By John C.

I've been working on this on and off for like a week. It's pretty long. I'm just going to put some comments by all the teams. Put stars (and their seed number) beside my playoff teams and go from there. Might as well put the win-loss record too although I didn't calculate it all out, so if it's inaccurate then don't bitch. And if you calculate it all then you need some free time. I watch a lot of NBA, follow it a lot and love it and I think my writeups will reflect that. My favorite team is the Raptors, which basically means I won't be biased in my playoff picks!

EASTERN CONFERENCE


Atlantic Division

1. New Jersey Nets: 47-35 * (3) - As much as I hate Vince Carter, they are the class of the division with three All-Star caliber players in Carter, Jefferson and Kidd. Their problems will come in the playoffs when their lack of a post game will kill them. Their interior defense isn't very good either. Still, they should be an exciting team to watch, if they can stay healthy. I think Nenad Krstic is a star on the rise, but again, he's still too thin to bang inside with the big boys.

2. Boston Celtics: 44-38 * (7) - I'm not sold on Paul Pierce getting along with Doc Rivers. It reminds me a lot of the Vince Carter situation in Toronto. Pierce was pissed last year a lot of the time because Doc rode him too hard. He sulked a lot. The team is relying on a lot of young guys to play big roles, like West, Jefferson and Perkins, but I personally don't think they're ready for it. I say Pierce gets traded after this season too, especially after they realize how good Gerald Green is gonna be. Still, they're missing the same thing that most teams are missing: a low post presence.

3. Philadelphia 76ers: 38-44 - I like the Mo Cheeks hiring a lot. Great coach for Iverson to play for. Problem is, this is a very thin team. Their bench is pretty bad. Iguodala could bust out, but I think he's a year away from having a 15-18 point scoring season. Webber? Who knows with him. I don't see him playing more than 60 games. Iverson will put up his usual numbers, but they're going to have to fight to get in the playoffs and I think they miss out.

4. New York Knicks: 37-45 - I think they're going to struggle mightily early on, then pick it up in the second half as they get used to Larry Brown's system. When I think about Larry Brown teams I don't see guys like Crawford and Q-Rich fitting in well. Their starting five isn't bad at all, but the chemistry issues are there. Can they defend? I dunno. They could certainly make the playoffs, I'm just thinking that there will be some head butting along the way and by the time they get on the same page it'll be too late.

5. Toronto Raptors: 28-54 - My boys. I think Chris Bosh will put up All-Star numbers this year. Whether he makes the team or not, I dunno, but his numbers will be there. I think defensively they'll be much improved over last year due to some of their acquisitions. Team chemistry will be better too with Alston out of there. I don't think they're a team that will get blown out a lot because they will show a lot of heart. Talent wise they're hurting a bit, so I think playoffs are out of the question. I just know that if they show heart and they don't give up (hi Vince!) then they'll still have their fans in Canada supporting them.


Central Division

1. Indiana Pacers: 57-25 * (1) - They'll win the Eastern Conference by a couple of games. They are a complete team. Great inside player with JO, one of the best swingmen in the league with Crazy Ron Artest, a banger inside with Foster, a dependable (when healthy) PG in Tinsley and another good fifth starter with Jackson. Plus they have a really deep bench with Harrison, Bender, Croshere, Jones and the guy who I think will make a huge impact, Sarunas Jasikevicius. You may remember him from the 2004 Olympics as the guy that team USA could not cover when they played Lithuania. Then they got Danny Granger too, who is a highly touted rookie. So not only do they go deep, but they got great coaching too. I like this team to go far.

2. Detroit Pistons: 53-29 * (4) - Deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetroit Basketball! Sorry, I just had to. They're the champs of the East until they are dethroned. Like last year, I expect them to loaf a bit during the season, then turn it on at the end. I don't think home court matters to them that much, even though it should since they played both the East Finals and the NBA Finals on the road in game seven. Their starting five is arguably as good as any in the league, plus they got a great six man in McDyess. The chemistry is there and so is the experience, so they got another championship run in them for sure. What about Darko? Will he get to play with the new coach, Flip Saunders? I think he gets in there a bit, but come on, it's Darko. When your team laughs on the bench if you score in a game you know your career is in trouble.

3. Cleveland Cavaliers: 52-30 * (5) - They're going to wish they were in the Craplantic, I bet. This team is going to be significantly better over last year because of their sound acquisitions like Larry Hughes, Donyell Marshall and Damon Jones to surround LeBron James and Zydrunas Ilgauskas in the middle. The thing they lacked last year was perimeter shooting, which is exactly what DMarsh and Jones can provide. Hughes is an All-Star player who is great with the ball in his hands, so he will take some pressure off Bron. Then there's simply LeBron, who I feel is going to be even better than his amazing 27-7-7 season of last year because he's got the Jordan attitude of constantly working at his game.

4. Chicago Bulls: 46-36 * (6) - I think they're about the same as last year. They didn't do too much in the offseason, aside from the Eddy Curry deal, to really shore up their team. They got young guys, they did well last year and they're going to see how they do again this year as a young group growing together. What they have that is their advantage is depth pretty much at all positions, but they lack a star. Hinrich is pretty good, Gordon is going to continue to be pretty good and a guy like Tyson Chandler is just too inconsistent although he can dominate a game defensively sometimes. I still say they're a playoff team. However, due to being in a tough division they're not going to beat the three that I have ahead of them.

5. Milwaukee Bucks: 37-45 - I like the Mason for Magloire trade because Mason would have had to fight for minutes with Redd and Simmons there. It's nice to see TJ Ford back out there. I'm not sold on Bogut at all. I think Marv Williams should have went number one, but we'll see if I'm right about that. They probably overpaid Redd. I don't think he's worth a max contract. Their foundation is nice. I just don't think it's enough to get into the playoffs.


This is the best division in the East. By a lot.


Southeast Division

1. Miami Heat: 55-27 * (2) - They will be as good as advertised. The only reason they won't be first in the East is because Shaq will miss 10-15 games, Wade will miss 5-10 and that'll be enough for Indiana to hold them off in the end. I don't think there'll be chemistry issues with J-Will, Payton or Walker. Shaq has the Jordan-Magic-Bird like quality that makes people around him play with respect and not make the game about them. If they fuck up, he'll keep 'em in line. The key is their health. Depth wise they are strong. It's the health that's the issue.

2. Washington Wizards: 41-41 * (8) - I think they're going to miss Larry Hughes more than they think. He gave them stability while Arenas was erratic, although effective, a lot of the time. They're pretty thin inside too, having to start Jamison at the 4 means they'll have great offense, but like a lot of East teams they will be hurting inside. They're good enough to be .500 to make the playoffs. They'll be swept in round one, though.

3. Orlando Magic: 33-49 - The only way they get in the playoffs is if Dwight Howard becomes a 20-10 guy this year. Since I don't think he's there yet (watch in 2006, though) then this team will struggle. Steve Francis is never going to be on a winning team that advances in the playoffs because despite being in his seventh year he's still the most immature player in the league. A horrible teammate, not a leader and the master of complaining. He brings people down. Basically, the opposite of Grant Hill. Outside of Hill, Francis and Howard they have very little. Thus, no playoffs.

4. Atlanta Hawks: 23-59 - Too many small forwards and shooting guards, no true power forward, center or point guard. They need to ship off Al Harrington for a PG or a PF fast because there's going to be some griping with all the guys they have. Supposedly they want Joe Johnson (I like him, but not worth a max deal) to play PG. He's better as an SG. Playing guys out of position usually doesn't work too well. Thus, they'll have problems. Then again it's Atlanta, so what is new, right?

5. Charlotte Bobcats: 18-64 - Same as last year. Felton should help. May should be nice off the bench. They still don't have good guards. Okafor's not a franchise guy. He's a good starter, but I don't see him improving THAT much. They're still a couple years away. It takes time.


EAST PLAYOFFS

1. Pacers over 8. Wizards

2. Heat over 7. Celtics

3. Nets over 6. Bulls

4. Cavs over 5. Pistons (LeBron's first true magic in the playoffs)


1. Pacers over Cavs

2. Heat over Nets


Heat over Pacers


WESTERN CONFERENCE

Northwest Division

1. Denver Nuggets: 52-30 * (3) - They finished last year on a tremendous roll, something like 32-8 or something thanks to the team buying into George Karl's system. Where I see problems for them is I don't think Voshon Lenard should be starting on an NBA team, much less on a competitive team in the West. The front line of Anthony (who I think is going to make a big leap this year in production), Martin and Camby is really strong if they can go without major injuries. The PG situation is nice with Miller, Boykins and now Earl Watson, although obviously some of them will play the two at times as well. They needed help with perimeter shooting, yet they barely helped themselves in that area. Still, they're talented enough, deep enough and coached well enough to win this division.

2. Seattle Supersonics: 44-38 * (8) - There will be a dropoff with them largely because Ray Allen played out of his mind last year because he was playing for a contract. I also don't have much faith in Vitaly Potapenko as a starting center although I think they were right in not paying Jerome James what the Knicks did. The loss of Nate McMillan as coach is going to hurt them a bit too. I just think they overachieved last year and now they come back down to Earth a bit.

3. Utah Jazz: 40-42 - Killed by injuries to Kirilenko and Boozer last year, they will bounce back nicely. Like the Nuggets, though, they're hurting at the SG position and since that is the most loaded position in the NBA it will hurt them in close games. Plus they're lacking 3 point shooters too. Memo Okur played quietly well at center last year while the draft pick of Derron Williams is going to be really good for them. Next year they are a playoff team. This year they fall just short. Andrei Kirilenko is one of the twenty best players in the NBA even if you've never seen him play. If he develops his offensive game a bit more he's going to be really scare.

4. Minnesota Timberwolves: 34-48 - As a huge KG fan, it's sad to see how far they've fallen (and will fall) since making the West finals two years ago. Their lineup is hurting. Olowakandi blows, Jaric is their starting PG and they are hoping a lot from Rashad McCants as their two guard of the future. Garnett's going to be his usual 25 point, 14 rebound, 5 assist self and will carry his team to more wins than they should get, but they are going to fight just to be respectable, I fear.

5. Portland Trail Blazers: 27-55 - Still too young. Still too immature, but they are heading in the right direction. Giving Darius Miles a long term deal was horrible. Now they have to ride it out, hope he can give them more than 10PPG and when they realize he can't they'll try to ship him out. I remember two years ago when the guy said he'd average 20-10-5 for a season. I was like, dude, you can't even do that in one game in a season, much less average. I guess that high school education is paying off. Randolph is a good PF although he never passes, nor does he play D. The PG situation with Telfair and Jack will be interesting because usually teams will have a young dude and vet, but they got two young dudes that could lead to problems. If they can get some production out of rookie SG Martell Webster (the top high schooler picked in the draft) then they will have something to build on in the future.

Southwest Division

1. San Antonio Spurs: 58-24 * (1) - The class of their division, their division and their league. After the gift of Nazr Mohammed from Isaiah Thomas last year they rode to the title because they didn't have to play crappy Rasho Nesterovic anymore. I wonder if they gave Thomas some playoff money for that move. If they had any concern last year it was depth, so what do they do? They get Mike Finley to come play there for very little money and also bring in Nick Van Exel as some insurance come playoff time. I'd predict them to win over 60 games except that Duncan always seems to miss 10-15 games and Bob Horry doesn't try until May or June. They have chemistry, depth, defense, scoring and great coaching. Every damn thing. What an organization.

2. Houston Rockets: 55-27 * (4) - Love what they've done with the team in the offseason. They say they're going to run more, but come on, it's JVG. He won't run all year. McGrady is playing out of his mind and now that he's got good talent around him like Derek Anderson, Rafer Alston, David Wesley and Bob Sura (he is hurt now) at the guard positions he's going to be able to play off the ball more rather than bring it up the floor a lot. That will free him up to isolate on the wings where he is just deadly. I like the Stro Swift pickup at PF. He's not THAT physical, but he's going to block shots with Ming, as well as get 10 boards per game, which is what they need. I think Yao will continue to get better since the Chinese government didn't make him play this summer, so he'll be more ready than he's ever been for a season. This year they make it to the second round of the West playoffs. I think they're the second best team in the West, but since they get the Spurs in round two they don't make the West finals.


3. Dallas Mavericks: 52-30 * (5) - Still solid, but they will slip a notch largely because Houston will be improved. Nowitzki's a top five MVP candidate again. Jason Terry played well at the end of last season, as did Jerry Stackhouse. I think they'll miss Mike Finley's leadership although he was hurt a lot last year, so his scoring won't be missed much because he wasn't there to give much. They need a guy like Josh Howard to develop a jumper because if he has that then he'll be that much more deadly on his drives to the net. They should be better defensively since Avery Johnson preaches that a lot, but I don't know if they have the personnel to do it. At least there's the comedy of Doug Christie signaling to his wife every time he does a damn thing. Too bad he's not good anymore.


4. Memphis Grizzlies: 35-47 - I see some slippage for them. Pau Gasol doesn't seem to improve. Just plays at the same level all the time, which is good, but not great or superstar level. Never seen him with intensity at the end of tight games. The rest of the team is okay. Nothing special, though. Battier is a solid pro as expected, Eddie Jones is declining, Lorenzen Wright is a decent center and maybe Hakim Warrick will surprise people by being better than what the draft experts think. The PG combo of Stoudamire and Bobby Jackson might be pretty good although I have my doubts about that too. Both probably want to start, so there may be a fight there.


5. New Orleans Hornets: 17-65 - Horrible team. The fact that they're gonna have to play in Oklahoma City might actually be a plus since they never should have been playing in NO in the first place due to the fans having no interest in an NBA team there. They also have the worst owner maybe in all of sports, yes even worse than the Clips and Arizona Cardinals of the NFL. On the court, at least they have PG Chris Paul, who I think is going to be rookie of the year even though his team will be the worst in the league. They need SG JR Smith to have a huge second year and I don't think he's ready. Desmond Mason should give them 18-20 PPG, but they have nothing inside and will be getting killed often thanks to playing 50 plus games against Western opponents.

Pacific Division

1. Phoenix Suns: 54-28 * (2) - Will they miss Amare Stoudemire? Definitely. They still have two All-Stars in Nash and Marion, though. I like the Kurt Thomas pickup a lot as he's been one of the more underrated players in the league. They will miss Joe Johnson more than Quentin Richardson, but I think they'll do alright with Jim Jackson, Raja Bell and James Jones rotating on the wing positions because the scoring will be there. I think people will doubt how valuable Nash is without Stoudemire and he will prove it by putting up more points this season just because he can. Then when Amare comes back in February he'll be in prime shape for a playoff run. They'll win 8 less games than last year, but still have enough to win their division.

2. Sacramento Kings: 49-33 * (6) - They won 50 games last year with nobody talking about them. They're under the radar for the first time in five or six years now. I predict good things from them. Two reasons. One, Peja Stojakovic is in a contract year. Guys always have big years in contract years. Look at Ray Allen last year. Plus, Peja is their clear #1 option, so he's going to give them big numbers. Second reason is they have a veteran laden team that is savvy at the end of games. Mike Bibby is clutch, Brad Miller doesn't fuck up at the end of games, Bonzi Wells is going to motivated now that he's a starter again and I have nothing to add about Abdur-Rahim since he's the softest guy in the league. They also have good front court depth, which helps when you think about all the injuries that happen in a year. They could win the division. I just think they fall short, although they will be on par with last year.

3. Golden State Warriors: 45-37 * (7) - Oh my God, GState in the playoffs! Crazy, but true. I think PG Baron Davis will be very motivated in a new home, in his home state and with a running team that will suit his skills wonderfully. JRich should put up his usual stats, Dunleavy is becoming a perimeter threat and Murphy is a great rebounder if he can just stay healthy. Their problems will come when they play bigger teams because I have little faith in Adonal Foyle at center. They also have a thin bench too. If they get in the playoffs it's a success. If they don't, they need to rethink their strategy.

4. Los Angeles Lakers: 41-41 - Maybe next year, Phil. Aside from Kobe, who do they have at guard. Some dude named Vucanic? Um, no, it's not happening. I think Odom will wake up in the second half once he grasps the offense while Kwame Brown might show some life by then too. I just think they're a team that will start out too slow to make the playoffs in the long run. I just hope Bryant and Jackson can co-exist because I'm already tired about the questions about them. Once Kobe has a 30-5-5 type season I think the questions will stop. Bryant won't be MVP, but he'll be one of the three best players in the NBA. Again. Too bad he won't have the teammates to see the playoffs.

5. Los Angeles Clippers: 33-49 - I'm not wild about the Sam Cassell pickup. They think he's going to teach Shaun Livingston, but he'll probably just bring his surly attitude that hurt the TWolves last year. Cuttino Mobley at SG seems like an upgrade, but he's another shoot first, no defense guy to go along with Corey Maggette. Elton Brand will do his usual 20-10 numbers, but it won't be enough again. The only bright spot this year could be the development of Livingston and Chris Kaman at center because if they want to be a success they need both of those guys.

WEST PLAYOFFS

1. Spurs over 8. Sonics

2. Suns over 7. Warriors (They will give them problems!)

6. Kings over 3. Nuggets (Have to pick an upset.)

4. Rockets over 5. Mavs


Spurs over Rockets (This is the REAL West Finals, though.)

Suns over Kings


Spurs over Suns


NBA Finals
Spurs over Heat. I want the Heat to win, but I don't see them being the better team. They lack the discipline and depth that the Spurs have. It's just too hard to pick against the Spurs.


AWARDS

Most Valuable Player: LeBron James, Cavs (Edges out McGrady and Nash)

All NBA 1st Team: Nash, McGrady, James, Duncan, O'Neal

Defensive Player: Ron Artest, Pacers (Should be Kirilenko, but he won't have enough people watching him like Crazy Ron does)

Rookie of the Year: Chris Paul (Will have more opportunity than any rookie to play and put up numbers. Derron Williams will be second. Marv Williams and Bogut won't be playing enough to win it.)

Coach of the Year: Rick Carlisle (I dunno why, but that's my pick.)

Most Improved Player: Nenad Krstic (Who? Exactly.)


OTHER STUFF

Scoring Champ: Kobe Bryant (Somebody has to score for them.)

Assist Leader: Steve Nash (Down a bit from last year, though.)

Rebound Leader: Kevin Garnett (Again.)

# of Times Shaq refers to Kobe Bryant by his name: Zero. "That guy" is more fun!

Amount of Hype for Lakers/Heat on Christmas: Too much.

# of Times I Heckle Vince Carter when I go see Raps/Nets on 11/04: 4,576

# of Times David Stern avoids answer a tough question: Every single time.

Is David Stern a robot?: Yep.

# of Complaints by Players about the Dress Code that make me laugh: 84,164

# of Games Artest is Suspended For: 3. He'll stare at a ref the wrong way and Stern will punish him.


I love this game. Is it predictable? Sure, but the quality of play is going to be better than it has been in a while. Will be a fun season. I love watching young dudes like James, Wade, Anthony, Howard, etc. grow into the next superstars.


Holy shit I wrote a lot, didn't I? Maybe I should try to find some sports site.


Sunday, October 23, 2005

 

NFL Picks - Week 7

Too lazy to do long winded picks this time.

* Kansas City at Miami - Could go either way, but I like the Chiefs in a tight game.

Detroit at Cleveland * - Blah. I refuse to pick the Lions on the road.

* Green Bay at Minnesota - Vikes are just really bad. So is Green Bay, but Vikes are more bad.

* Indianapolis at Houston - Shocking pick, eh?

New Orleans at St. Louis * - I can't figure either of these teams out. That's not a good thing when one is your favorite. Run Jackson run.

* Pittsburgh at Cincinnati - No idea, but should be fun. Ben plays, Steelers win.

San Diego at Philadelphia * - Tough call. I take Philly in a tight game because SD can be thrown on.

San Francisco at Washington * - Fucking Portis. Have a big game once for my fantasy team. Please!

Dallas at Seattle * - I like taking the Seabags at home.

Baltimore at Chicago * - First TD wins. Jamal Lewis is horrid.

* Buffalo at Oakland - Raiders have problems. Too incosistent and bad coaching.

Denver at N.Y. Giants * - I still don't believe in Denver that much.

* Tennessee at Arizona - No idea, but Tenn has a better QB-RB combo, so that's enough for me.

N.Y. Jets at Atlanta * - Falcons win big.

Friday, October 14, 2005

 

NFL Picks - Week 6

Pick time. I wrote most of this yesterday, but I like to re-think on Fridays just to make sure.

Season: 46-28 (Not great, but I'm happy with that.)

Atlanta at New Orleans (San Antonio, TX)
New Orleans was never very good and now that McAlister is gone for the year, Joe Horn is banged up and the defense still has problems I think they're in for a lot of losing this year. Vick or no Vick (I think he plays), Atlanta wins this game either way. They're just better in a lot of ways. Falcons 23-10.

Carolina at Detroit
I'm not on the Panther bandwagon the way most are, but Detroit is hurting at WR and I never feel confident in picking Harrington to win two straight. Panthers 26-17.

Cincinnati at Tennessee
I don't think Cincy is as good as they think they are, and the Titans aren't any sort of pushover. I like Cincy to win this one close while also keeping the score low. Bengals 20-16.

Cleveland at Baltimore
Baltimore
is the most overrated team in the NFL. The running game that people thought they have is non-existent. Anthony Wright is the most incompetent QB playing in the NFL right now. That defense that everybody loves isn't as good as it was. When Deion Sanders is your nickelback and he can't run down a slow RB like Shawn Bryson then you've got problems. Also, Brian Billick is a below average coach who has done nothing to his team's offensive woes in the past five years, despite adding a talent like Derrick Mason. I'll take the Browns because Dilfer's impressed me and will be VERY motivated to beat the team that let him go for stupid reasons. Browns 14-13.

Jacksonville at Pittsburgh
Tough to pick because Ben is probably not playing. Still, I like the Steelers because I don't think the Jags will be able to run on them and the Jags passing game is still suspect to me. I think it'll be hard hitting with the Steelers pulling it out in the end. If Batch plays, he won't attempt more than 17 passes. They will run, run and run some more. Steelers 17-13.

Miami at Tampa Bay
I would love it if Ricky Williams runs for 150 yards and the Fish win because I'm a Ricky fan. After all, he's the guy that said he's addicted to sweets. I think the Bucs are gonna be in trouble because Cadillac Williams is banged up and Brian Griese has shown why he sucks when he's been forced to throw. He's the master of throwing balls short. I begrudgingly pick the Bucs to win because I like their defense a lot. Bucs 19-17.

Minnesota at Chicago
Blah. I have no idea. I think the Vikes are distracted by their sex orgy on the yacht, so the Bears might be able to steal one despite their horrible offense. Maybe Cedric Benson has a big game. Bears 21-20.

N.Y. Giants at Dallas
Dallas
looked very good last week, that's for sure. The Giants have looked strong all year, though. Last week against Philly, Dallas had like 40+ rushing plays. I don't think they'll be able to do that here simply because the Giants offense is on a better roll than Philly's was. Throw in the fact that Dallas is due for a letdown after last week's high and the Giants are coming off the bye. Basically, I like the Giants. Giants 30-23.

Washington at Kansas City
I don't believe in the Redskins at all. Chiefs roll. Chiefs 31-10.

New England at Denver
The consensus is Denver here, right? Well, I'll go against that. I just have a feeling. I don't think Denver is as good as people think and I think this is a huge statement game for the Pats. Like they always seem to do, they'll make that statement. Pats 28-26.

N.Y. Jets at Buffalo
I can't figure out either of these teams, so I'll pick the home team and stop talking right there. Bills 20-14.

San Diego at Oakland
This is not a big game. Oakland isn't very good. The Chargers are the best 2-3 team arguably ever. I like them to win here after Monday's tough loss. Chargers 34-20.

Houston at Seattle
Houston
is the worst team in the league. Carr has been sacked 27 times in 4 games. That's crazy. Shaun Alexander will run for a lot of yards and touchdowns as the Seabags roll. They're also my Survival pick of the week. Seahawks 28-13.

St. Louis at Indianapolis
The spread at 13.5 should be higher. The Rams are a mess. It's not just the Martz thing, but they're going to be starting their 3rd string free safety (Mike Furrey, he was a WR the last few years) and the cornerback situation is a messy one too. Never mind that it was never good to begin with. Against Indy at home on MNF? That has disaster written all over it. The best strategy for the Rams would be run a ball control offense to keep the Colts off the field, but ball control isn't in their vocabulary. Plus the Colts are a simply a much better team. Colts 44-17.

I'm feeling a little nuts this week. Picked some road underdogs to win outright. I rarely do that.

My four games against the spread. I'm 5-7 in this since I started in week three.

Atlanta (-5.5) over NEW ORLEANS - The Saints have a lot of problems. The Falcons will run for 200+ yards on them.

SEATTLE (-9.5) over Houston - I hate touching big spreads, but Houston should always be a double digit underdog on the road against a team with a great run game.

San Diego (-2) over OAKLAND - People think the Raiders are better than they really are.

KANSAS CITY (-6) over Washington - I always like the Chiefs at home.


Friday, October 07, 2005

 

NFL Picks - Week 5

The Picks:

37-23 on the year straight up. Not bad. Against the spread I'm 27-32-1 on the year.

Baltimore at Detroit - People make fun of Joey Harrington a lot, but Anthony Wright is much worse. I think Detroit's decent at home and since they have a good DLine they'll force some turnovers leading to some Detroit points. Low scoring, but the Lions will win by a bit. Lions 17-13.

Chicago at Cleveland - Crennel will have his team ready to go after a bye week. I like the Browns here. Orton will have a bad game. Dilfer's been pretty good. It continues. Browns 20-10.

Miami at Buffalo - I'm done picking the Bills. Dolphins 17-16.

New England at Atlanta - I have no idea. That's why I pick the Pats. I think they're too good to lose this week after getting humiliated last week. Pats 26-23.

New Orleans at Green Bay - No defense here. Green Bay is due. Packers 38-33.

Seattle at St. Louis - This is a great situation for the Rams. Back at home after a tough loss, Seattle's two starting WRs are both out (Jackson and Engram) and they'll be playing really hard for their ailing coach. I just hope Bulger doesn't throw 61 passes again. Seattle can win if they run Alexander about 35 times. I just think the Rams will have 8 guys at the line because they don't fear the Seattle passing game this week. They gotta win this game. Please! Rams 34-16.

Tampa Bay at N.Y. Jets - I still don't believe in Tampa THAT much, but the Jets are bad in a lot of areas. So Bucs it is. Bucs 20-9.

Tennessee at Houston - I just think Houston is really bad. Titans 26-14.

Indianapolis at San Francisco - Blowout. Welcome to the NFL, Alex Smith. Colts 31-3.

Carolina at Arizona - Cards still suck. Neil Rackers is a kicking machine, though. Panthers 21-12.

Philadelphia at Dallas - Philly is on too much of a role. Huge game for McNabb-Owens again. The Cowboys pass coverage is subpar. Eagles 30-17.

Washington at Denver - I think I'm always going to pick Denver at home. I don't have that much faith in the Skins. Did you see Portis' sunglasses the other day? Fucking nuts. Broncos 27-10.

Cincinnati at Jacksonville - Should be a good game and a refreshing primetime game for once. I'm sick of all the AFC West and NFC East teams in primetime. Like most Jags games, I think it's close. Jags by a hair. Jags 19-17.

Pittsburgh at San Diego - Hines Ward is banged up, the Chargers are coming off a very impressive win and Tomlinson is on fire. It will be interesting see if the great Steelers run D can slow down Tomlinson. I'm thinking he does enough for his team to win. I also think Gates will have a big game. Steelers can be thrown on. Chargers win with a late TD, 27-23.

My four games against the spread. I'm 3-5 in this since I started in week three.

ST. LOUIS (-3) over Seattle (Rams own them.)

Carolina (-2.5) over ARIZONA (Way too much respect for the shitty Cards.)

Philadelphia (-3) over DALLAS (I just really like Philly a lot right now, even on the road.)

GREEN BAY (-3) over New Orleans (Like I said, GB is due.)

I'm confident in the first two picks. Not as much in the other ones. I don't recall many weeks where there's only two games with spreads about 3.5 points. This is crazy as far as betting goes, but it makes fun to be a fan because of all the parity.


 

JR No Longer Voice of Raw

I'm still amazed by this. It has me shaking my head. The announcers faces are on TV for what, maybe a minute total, two minute tops? So Jim Ross, a man with about 30 years of experience in the wrestling business that has earned the respect of wrestlers and fans alike suddenly isn't "good looking" enough to keep his job? It's just stupid.

That's no disrespect to Goldberg, who I've found to be a very good announcer on UFC shows. Thing is, that guy isn't even a wrestling fan from all accounts. I doubt he's that familiar with the product. Sure, he can learn, but you're going to put a guy like that out there LIVE when he's probably unsure of what to do?

This is a bad move. You know who'd be better than Goldberg? Josh Matthews. Yeah, I said it. He's got wrestling knowledge and experience at the job. If you want youth, get a wrestling fan with youth. If WWE thinks they're going to bring in more UFC fans because they have Goldberg as an announcer then they are stupider than they look a lot of the time.

I don't understand or like this decision at all.

I don't know if he's the best announcer ever (probably isn't), but to me he's a very good announcer that represents my favorite times as a wrestling fan. When Vince McMahon moved away from announcing and JR stepped in I thought that was one of the best changes WWE could have made. He had more credibility than Vince largely because he knew the names of moves. He also spoke with tremendous emotion and passion. All of the great moments in the careers of Austin, Foley, Rock, HHH, etc. are remembered in my mind with Jim Ross' voice in my head. I'm gonna miss hearing the guy on Mondays.

This is sad. I hope none of this is true and WWE has come to their senses although I doubt that very much.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

 

MLB Playoff Picks

I love the baseball playoffs. Here are my picks:

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Yanks over Angels in 5 (I think it's close, but the Yanks have too many bats.)
Red Sox over White Sox in 4 (White Sox pitching has struggled and the Red Sox will capitalize with their offense.)

Yanks over Red Sox in 6 (Neither has great pitching, but I think the Yanks have the advantage in power and they have the better closer, despite the Sox owning Rivera.)

NATIONAL LEAGUE
Astros over Braves in 4 (I just think their starting pitching is too good.)
Cards over Padres in 3 (They're not in the same league.)

Cards over Astros in 7 (A very good series like last year. Home field matters.)

WORLD SERIES
Cards over Yankees in 6 (I just think the Cards are due.)

Truthfully I have no confidence in any of my picks, but I do know San Diego will get creamed by the Cards. Like always I root for the underdogs and for the teams with the smaller payroll.

I really want the Cards to win because Larry Walker is the greatest Canadian non-pitcher ever (Fergie Jenkins is best ever) and I really want to see him get a ring in what might be his last year.

Monday, October 03, 2005

 

NFL Week 4 Observations

I didn't see the Rams game due to a family matter, so it's hard to judge it. I have to say, though, that from seeing the highlights that the 4 TD grabs by the Giant receivers were fucking incredible. Burress lunging over the middle and taking it to the house. Toomer tip toeing in the corner on a 4th down was beautiful. Burress in a crowd, again on a high ball. Then Shockey with Archuleta on him (might have been a flag on Arch, I dunno) was amazing too. They just outplayed them in every area. The Rams had five turnovers too. That's no good. I have no fucking clue what they were calling on that reverse in the redzone that led to a fumble. Sigh.

The Rams secondary still has its problems. I thought the run D was getting better, but I guess not. They're now missing their top two TE's too. Not like they pass to TE's much, but when you lose two of your three TE's it's going to hurt the whole team.

The Giants are definitely a 10 win team. Great fucking offense.

Rams vs. Seahawks in St. Louis next week. Big game. The Rams have owned Seattle lately, but they always play close games. I still think the Rams are good enough to win 9 games and their division. To go 2-2 after 3 road games is fine by me since they're so good at home.

I really have nothing to add to the other games. I just think the Pats losing by THAT much is crazy.

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