I don't care.
I feel like I should, but I don't. I feel like I should be outraged, upset that one of my favorite players on my favorite team has been cheating the system and cheating me for years. Or perhaps I should be supportive, defending the guy that's given me so much joy since he became a Brewer. But I just do not care.
Maybe I'm growing apathetic. Maybe I've been too busy this summer to pay too much attention to this situation. Maybe if the Brewers were better and I'd care a little more. Maybe if I wasn't as busy I'd have more emotion. Maybe right now there are more important things in my life and caring about whether or not a baseball player did something illegal.
It's not like me not to care. I'm known for never cutting it down the middle. I'm a passionate guy. I'm either all in or all against. And when I have opinions I'm loud about it. And with topics so big like this one, Ryan Braun using steroids or PEDs or whatever he vaguely admitted to today, you would think that would draw ire from me towards him or ire from me towards those against him. I'm really trying hard to care a little bit more about this, I'm tightening my muscles and clenching my wrists trying to put out a grin and trying to spark up an emotion. But I still just don't care.
Then again, I'm not a baseball purist. I grew up the biggest baseball fan you could be. It was my sport and my dreams were of being a big leauger. In 1994, baseball went on strike and those dreams went away (also the fact that I was terrible at baseball. Like catcher in T-ball terrible). I grew to hate baseball and swore I'd never watch it again. You know what brought me back? That's right, the homerun chase of 1998. Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire. Now no, that doesn't justify the use of steroids in the game, but I'm not writing this article without that homerun chase because without that homerun chase I may never have gotten back into the game.
Listening to sports radio today - a profession that I am in! - I grew upset at the radio hosts for their compassion. One particular conversation I heard was whether or not they think the fans will give Braun a Standing O on Opening Day 2014. Most of the guys on the roundtable thought that the fans would while another thought it would be blasphemy if the fans reacted that way. I don't know. I think I would give him a standing ovation. He did wrong but he's our guy. A standing ovation opening day doesn't mean we support him doing drugs or support him lying. It means we support the recovery process. We forgive him for his mistakes.
Maybe by then I will care. Maybe I will be upset. But right now I just don't feel the emotion.
I just don't care.
I don't care.
Aaron Rodgers was making a sandwich on Sunday when the knife he was using to cut up an ingredient slipped away from his control and ended up slicing his thumb. According to sources, the thumb has been dislodged from his right hand, which also happens to be his throwing hand. This story is still developing, and no one with the Packers organization has been able to comment at this time.
See what I did there? I used the internet to write a bunch of words and throw them together to create a story. A fake story, mind you, but a story nonetheless. Why would I do this? Because that's the same exact thing that happened on Sunday morning when I was alerted to the news that Clay Matthews broke both of his legs in a car accident, at least according to this website. Keep in mind that the website that is reporting the news is one you've never seen before, but who cares! It's on the internet, so it must be true!
I don't mind the fact that if you hear someone talk about how Clay Matthews was in a car accident and broke both of his legs, you're going to probably believe it right away. I mean, why wouldn't you? What I do mind is that people that look at the article and then tell their friends that Clay Matthews broke his legs. Seriously, look at the article. It's a joke so much so that at the bottom of the page there is this disclaimer -
Without even reading the disclaimer, take a look at the actual article. Are there any "facts" that jump out at you as being a bit sketchy? First of all, there is no such thing as the Wisconsin Highway Safety Authority. Second of all, if it was true, they would never release this information, that would be left to either the county or city police department. Also, what 76-year old female driver is driving a 2010 Audi? And what the hell is Clay Matthews doing in Wisconsin during the offseason anyway?
The point here is that you can't take everything you see online as truth, especially when the source is highly suspect (and admits that they are a fake). Sadly, I'm sure someone has seen the headline of this article on Twitter and will tell their friends that Aaron Rodgers has cut off his thumb, as they likely didn't even follow the link to see the explanation of why that was the headline in the first place.
But kudos to the website that put out the rumor. They've likely seen an all-time high in unique visitors today, especially in Wisconsin. Hey, when my grandma is texting me asking about the rumor, you've got to be pretty proud of the reach that you've been able to accomplish.
So no, Clay Matthews did not break both of his legs. And Aaron Rodgers did not cut off his thumb. And if he did, you certainly wouldn't hear about it first on a website with as little credibility as this one.
With the regular season not yet underway, next year’s Superbowl may seem to be a long way away, but it is never too soon to make a few speculative bets on your favorite teams while the betting odds are still attractive. However, if you are hoping to win some really useful money, it could pay to chose some of the less popular teams where the odds are very long, and even if you bet just a small amount of money on a carefully chosen selection of teams, you stand a good chance of beating the bookmakers.
Most people are betting on the usual favorites: the New England Patriots at 7/1; the San Francisco 49ers at 8/1, the Denver Broncos at 17/2 and the Green Bay Packers at around 10/1. Although those odds are fairly reasonable, with teams such as Baltimore Ravens you can find odds as long as 23/1, and if you are willing to speculate on the tenth favorites which are the Chicago Bears you can find odds as high as 48/1. Those long odds will rapidly shorten should the teams begin to perform well in the early weeks of the regular season, so now is the time to make the best of the situation.
If all of this speculation is making you a little edgy, then why not click over to an online casino like Jackpot city for a few spins on that super-slot game called 5 Million Dollar Touchdown. This American Football themed slot has the potential to make you seriously rich; all you need do is spin 5 scatter symbols and within moments $5 million will be racing their way to your bank account. Admittedly that jackpot doesn't happen that frequently, but there are plenty of other prizes to go for too, including a minor jackpot and a fun bonus feature where you go for a touchdown.
Are the Packers signing Steven Jackson or what? This feels like the day when I sat on Twitter for three plus hours waiting for the Bucks to pull the trigger on Josh Smith. Was it the best move that the Bucks could have made that day? Who knows. But it would have brought a level of excitement that had been sorely lacking around Milwaukee when it came to the Bucks. I wanted the Josh Smith trade to happen so bad. Not because I wanted Josh Smith, but I just wanted something to, I guess just happen.
I want something to happen again, only this time with the Packers. I want Steven Jackson. What else are the Packers going to do? Resign Cedric Benson? I'd be okay with that, but that doesn't seem likely. Sign Peyton Hillis? Um, pass. Let James Starks or Dujuan Harris carry the load? I like both of those guys, but not sure if they are feature backs. So yeah, you can do any one of those things, OR you could sign Steven Jackson and have a three man backfield of Starks, Harris, and Jackson.
When I say sign Jackson, I mean do it within the Ted Thompson rule of business. Never overpay for free agents. Reportedly, the Packers want Jackson on their financial terms, so hopefully they can make it work. I'm heading to bed on this Wednesday night thinking there is a chance I could wake up to the news that Steven Jackson is a Packer. Hell, Greg Jennings too for that matter.
But what will really happen?
There will be two contract signings tomorrow, sure.
Steven Jackson to the Falcons.
Greg Jennings to NCIS.
To the three people who were directed here because they were curious about the headline on Twitter, I apologize. But I desperately needed those three unique views, so thank you. Last week I tried to decide on a favorite MLS team, and I whittled my final four down to the Los Angeles Galaxy, Columbus Crew, Portland Timbers, and Seattle Sounders. I'm here to finally end that suspense for you by telling you I'm going with Seattle.
I've always sort of had a rooting interest in the Sounders, because of how quickly the city of Seattle took to soccer and started to fill up Qwest Field for the team. It was incredible to see an MLS team capture that level of excitement, to bring a truly European feel to America. I got swept up in it as much as someone like me could, but never enough to fully commit to them as a favorite.
One big hangup was honestly, and this may be a lame reason, how much I dislike the Seattle Seahawks. Rooting for the Sounders means I'm rooting for a team with the same home, same stadium, some color scheme, and same fans as a team I really, really, just do not care for. But whatever. You can't argue with your heart I guess.
So Sounders it is. Although if the Tampa Bay Mutiny ever came back I would quickly revert back to my first love. And if by some miracle Wisconsin ever got a team I'd be first in line. But since neither of those things seem like they are ever going to happen, the Sounders are the pick.
Plus, their comeback in the CONCACAF Champions League game on Tuesday night was pretty amazing. That didn't hurt my decision either. (The goals at 3:04 and 3:29 are must see, simply incredible).
I love soccer. Very much. And when people ask me which team is my favorite they follow up the question with a few suggestions of their own. Manchester United? Liverpool? Real Madrid? And each time I have to explain that I'm not really in to European Club Soccer. It's strange, I know, that someone that loves soccer as much as I do could dislike the highest level of the game (besides the World Cup). I think it might come down to being still bitter about a Manchester United vs. Bayern Munich game I saw ten or so years ago at Solider Field in Chicago, when both squads threw their "C" sides at us and expected the American crowds to be fine with seeing a watered down product. The most likely reason however is that I am a firm believer in the MLS, and would rather concentrate my time and efforts into rooting for the domestic league rather than the European league.
Everytime I explain this to people, especially other soccer fans, they think that I am an idiot. They say things such as "The C sides that you complain about are still better than your MLS teams" or "The MLS is nowhere near the European leagues when it comes to quality of play". I can't say that I ever disagree with them, although the quality of play in the MLS is better than people give it credit for.
When it comes down to it though, Americans don't seem to have the patience to watch the MLS improve and grow. We're used to the NBA, the best level of basketball in the world. We're used to the NFL, the best level of football in the world. The same goes with the NHL and Major League Baseball. The best leagues are in America, and the best players in the world come here to play those sports. Soccer is obviously different. The MLS has only been around since 1996; it doesn't have the luxury of tradition and history as the other sports. Yeah there were professional soccer leagues in America before the MLS, but those are now a distant memory. The fact of the matter is, the MLS is an American league, and since I live in America and want to continue to see the game grow in this country, I am going to root for the American product.
There is one problem, however. Nearly 20 years later and I still don't have a favorite team.
The thing is, I did have a favorite team once in the form of the Tampa Bay Mutiny. They had the best record during the first season of Major League Soccer, and I actually attended a game in Tampa that first year. They had two of my favorite players, Carlos Valderrama and Roy Lassiter. But the team was dissolved in 2001 as the MLS shrank down the number of teams to make sure they didn't have to shut down the whole operation. The Tampa Bay Mutiny were almost a sacrificial lamb of the league to stay afloat, and since then I've become more of a follower of the league than of any other team. Part of me was also waiting for a team to come to Milwaukee, but then again I'm also waiting for the 24 movie. The teases are there, it's just never going to happen.
So, similar to how I used process of elimination to pick a favorite hockey team a few years back (Buffalo Sabres), I'm going to do the same with the MLS. And as of writing this sentence, I have no I do who I'm going to be rooting for this season. Let's cut them down.
O Canada - Gotta get rid of the Canadian teams first, although I have been fond of Toronto FC. The reason I root for the MLS is to help promote and support the growth of soccer in America, so it's gotta be an American team. Goodbye Toronto FC, Montreal Impact, Vancouver Whitecaps.
The Farm Team - When the MLS added another team in Los Angeles named Chivas USA, the thinking was that the MLS version of Chivas would basically be a mini version of the popular Mexican club. They aimed to mainly bring in Latin players but the experiment failed miserably. Well, now under new ownership, they are aiming to employ the same strategies of the past. Due to the fact that Chivas USA is using the MLS to bolster Chivas Mexico, I can't get behind a team that I feel is "using" my league. So long, Chivas USA.
The Teams I Dislike But Couldn't Tell You Why, Although It's Probably Something As Stupid As Not Liking Their Color Schemes - Houston Dynamo, Philadelphia Union
The Teams I've Tried to Like But It Hasn't Stuck Yet - First, I have to eliminate the Chicago Fire even though you'd think they'd be the most obvious choice since they are the closest. And I have been to one of their games, and it was a decent time. But the stadium is in a weird location and I couldn't get myself to feel a connection to the team. So they are out. Also out is the New England Revolution, a team with a solid backing from Robert Kraft but a team that has almost tried to be irrelevant. Tried to like them for awhile, but can't get that to stick either. Same with the D.C. United. Just couldn't feel a connection like they were my team.
You Used To Be Called the Wiz - Quickly changed to the much better Wizards, and now Sporting KC, let's be serious. Sporting KC used to be the Kansas City Wiz.
The Time Zone America forgot - Eliminating Real Salt Lake and the Colorado Rapids. Still thinking about ordering the MLS DirecTV package, but if I don't, most of the games on TV will be of East Coast and West Coast teams, glossing over teams in the Mountain Time Zone. Sorry guys.
Never Root for a Team From Dallas - FC Dallas
The Cleveland Browns Corollary - You know how the Browns left for Baltimore, but the city of Cleveland got to keep the Browns and all of their history? Then when the Browns started playing again, they were not treated as an expansion team but rather the rebirth of a former team? That seems weird to me. And the same thing happened to the San Jose Earthquakes (Houston Dynamo).
The Team I Forgot - I initially forgot the New York Red Bulls in this post, so they are out. Put them under a team I tried to like but couldn't get them to stick.
So that is leaving the Final Four of the Los Angeles Galaxy, Seattle Sounders, Columbus Crew, and Portland Timbers. And that's where I can't get past.
Galaxy - I know it's like liking the Yankees, or Duke, or the Lakers, but the Galaxy are on TV the most and I really wanted them to win the titles with Donovan and Beckham because I thought it was good for the league. But does that make me too much of a front runner?
Crew - I've never disliked the Crew, but I never really liked them. They did become the first to have a stadium for soccer and soccer only, which I think is great. They've won one MLS Cup and I kind of want to root for a team that hasn't won one yet. Plus, Columbus is the closest road trip for me besides Chicago (again, I'm a Wisconsin boy) and that could be a realistic jaunt someday. Could this be too "boring" of a pick?
Sounders - MLS has something special going on in the Pacific Northwest. The Sounders, Timbers, and Whitecaps are all MLS versions of clubs that used to play in the lower levels of American soccer before so built in rivalries are there. The Seattle passion is strong, and I was very fond of their first goalkeeper, the great Kasey Keller. Drew Carey is a part owner, and the fans can actually vote out their General Manager. It's a great club. And they're probably the team I've seen on TV the most the last few years. But they play at Qwest Field and have an affiliation with the Seattle Seahawks. And I hate the Seahawks. Will that be an irrational roadblock for me?
Timbers - If I can't go with the Sounders, I could go with the Timbers. Similar location, have thought about moving to Portland someday (like everybody). But would I be "settling" for a team from the Northwest while really wishing I was a Sounders fan?
At this point, I do have a frontrunner, but I just can't pull the trigger yet. What do you think? Did I eliminate a team too soon? Which one of the Final Four will be The One?
Answer coming shortly...
Like we discussed last week in our post about how to spend your Sundays sans football, sports fans across America have been looking for other sporting outlets to watch and bet on. Today we think we have found the cure, or at least something to help kill the time until the men of the gridiron return.
Now that the Spring is upon us the next major sporting event we have set our sights on is March Madness. After March Madness we have the NHL and NBA playoffs, MLB action starts to heat up and then before you know it College Football and NFL pre-season returns! Ok, we admit that there are still some gaps in between then but to help make average sporting events worthwhile to watch is by having some skin in the game. This is when we start to bet on sports over the Internet at USA sportsbooks. Whether you have been taking part in online sports betting since you were in diapers, or if you have never tried it before, the first rule you need to remember is that it is not the number of bets you win or lose, but how much you bet each game.
Did you know that the Super Bowl in February and the Kentucky Derby in May are usually the two most bet on sports days in the year in the USA? Believe it. The Kentucky Derby typically has more bets placed on one day than any other single day sporting event. Yes, the Super Bowl gets more wagers placed on it overall when you include Super Bowl bets placed in the week prior leading up to the big game, but for single day wagering action Kentucky Derby Internet betting takes the cake for single day online betting by Americans. The 139th Kentucky Derby will take place Sunday, May 4th, 2013 at Churchill Downs, in Kentucky.
Now that we have got you salivating for some online sports betting action, now might be a good time to let you know where it is that most players from the U.S. place their online sports bets. How good of a reading date would this be if we didn’t leave you with a happy ending and let you know what our favorite online sports betting site is to bet on the Kentucky Derby, NFL, March Madness, and everything else in between? In a word, Bovada. In our view the Bovada Sportsbook has to be amongst one of the best wagering sites online and if you would like to continue reading then we suggest reading a review of the Bovada Casino which covers their signup bonus, deposit options, payout rules, betting selections, and player reviews from fellow bettors in your shoes. Regardless of whether you bet with Bovada, with a friend, mother, or dog, always be aware of your limit and bet within it. That includes other Public Service Announcement brought to you by the good folks at the Bucky Channel.
There was an overwhelming sense on Twitter, Facebook, and oh why not - even real life that it was hard adjusting to a Sunday without football. You have to admit, the lack of pigskin is going to take some getting used to. For the last 20 plus weeks we've been able to plop down on the couch and take in 9 plus hours of football before we head back to the treachery that is our worklife. And even though we're likely still on the couch all day, with the lack of football things just seem less... productive. No team to root for, no fantasy scores to check, no pizza to order. So how do we spend our Sundays until the NFL is finally back? Let's go over some ideas.
* You knew it was coming, so let me say it first. Soccer! The EPL is in full swing, and even though I'm more of an MLS guy, good soccer is good soccer. Sure, you might have to get up a little earlier to watch the Premier League, but there used to be a time where not a single TV set in America could show the game outside of a few ethnic bars in New York City. If you are more of the MLS type, the league is in it's preseason and the season starts up again in March. I'm hoping this is the year I finally pick a team and run with it, since my favorite disbanded about a decade ago (Tampa Bay Mutiny). I'm going to figure it out similar to the article where I decided to root for the Buffalo Sabres in hockey, so stayed tuned.
* Speaking of hockey, NBC is pretty good at showing games on Sundays, as is the NBC Sports Network. Find more games on NHL Center Ice, which is awesomely affordable this year. Ratings are about as high as ever, which almost begs the question - Should leagues take time off on purpose to drum up fan interest? A terribly awful question to ask but the lockout has nowhere near affected the league like it did the last time. In fact, it's almost helped. As did the NBA lockout. And the near NFL lockout. Lockouts and strikes might just be a positive in this sports world that we live in. Well, except for referee strikes - those are the worst.
* Still want to have the buddies over? Poker tournaments are the way to go. My high school life saw me at a different friends house every weekend playing cards, and even though we mostly live in the same area to this day, the card tournaments are faded. Everytime we get together we say, "Let's play cards sometime!" and all agree to it, but then never do. This is my call to action - cards next weekend boys?
* Or... grab a good DVD set and go on a television watching binge. I'm in the middle of a "Fringe Binge" and in addition to that my fiance and I just made a trade - I watch Dawson's Creek and she watches Lost. Yes, that's a lot of Joshua Jackson, but I'm a sucker for good teen dramedies.
Yeah... it's gonna be a long offseason.
Our strong 2013 continues, and you know we're the place to expect more insight and analysis to get you through your work day (or in the case of Beandog, his unemployment!). With baseball and March Madness just weeks away, we're cranking up to do our best work. And guess what, there are only 85 other blogs that are going to be better than us this year!
I like this because I love Gus Johnson and I love soccer. I'm not 100 percent on board with this because a) I want this job and b) I'm not sure how much the marriage between Gus and The Beautiful Game is working. It's all part of a plan for FOX to groom him to be ready for the World Cup in 2018 and 2022. Here's your sample.
Is America Ready for Gus Johnson, Soccer Announcer? (Deadspin)
San Francisco 49ers (-4) at Atlanta Falcons
The road team is favored in the NFC Championship, and it's hard to bet against them. Atlanta tried their hardest to give away Sunday's game against Seattle, but somehow pulled out a victory in spite of coach Mike Smith. But Atlanta's inepititude aside, San Francisco is favored because they are the better team. They have the better defense, the better special teams, the better running game, and oh yeah, they have this kid named Colin Kaepernick. Maybe it was because he played a Packers defense that forgets how to plan against opponents when it comes playoff time, but Kaepernick looked like he completely changed the game of football when faced against Green Bay. This kid is the real deal, and I just don't know how you plan against him. All that being said, I latched on to Atlanta at the beginning of the postseason and I'm not wavering from that. There's too much talk about them being postseason chokers, and I think they'll respond to the test again this weekend. The number one see giving four points? I'll take that anyday.
Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots (-10)
Baltimore was a huge underdog last weekend as well, and look what they were able to accomplish against Denver. But John Fox doesn't coach New England, and I think the Patriots are finally going to win another Super Bowl this year, so I stick with them. Ten points though is a lot. Especially with how close the game was between these two teams last year in the AFC Championship. It's surprising that the Patriots haven't won a Super Bowl since W.'s first term (give or take a month) considering how good the team has been since that span. They've lost two Super Bowls since, and those were two of the more heartbreaking ways in which you lose a Super Bowl. They'll overcome the Gronkowski injury, they'll get Danny Woodhead back (which only I care about), and Tom Brady will be on a mission. I see this game playing out the same way the game against Houston played out. New England takes a lead, Baltimore comes back by half, New England runs away in the second half. I'm taking New England, even with the ten points.
My answer to why I still wear the Livestrong wristband: I wore it initially for two reasons, my fondness and admiration of Lance Armstrong as well as the work he was doing for cancer research and the inspiration he provided. I am saddened by the fact that he is planning to admit to doping, but I will continue to wear the band to support the foundation that he created, Livestrong, and the work that they are doing, aiming to prevent the deaths and pain of our loved ones. I have no plans to get a tattoo in my life, so I consider this wristband my tattoo. It stays on, as does the fight against cancer.
Watching the Seahawks/Falcons game today, I realize I think I hate certain teams more than I actually love the Packers. I mean, I love the Packers. That goes without saying. But had Seattle beat Atlanta today I might have been more devastated about that result than the Packers loss. I type that sentence and I realize it's absurd, but I type it to illustrate just how strong of hate I have towards certain teams. I think there is a scale. A love/hate scale. For as much as you love something, you can hate something the same amount. So for as much as I love the Packers, I hate certain teams just as much.
The obvious teams to hate are the Lions, Bears, and Vikings. Of those three, I hate the Vikings the most. I lived in La Crosse for six years, was around a lot of Vikings fans. And the whole Favre thing. Plus, I respect the Bears. The Vikings? I honestly don't get the appeal in that team. Except for AP. He's allright.
Other teams come and go. Niners. Cowboys. Eagles. Giants. Basically whoever last beat the Packers in the playoffs. But the Seahawks. I can not stand the Seahawks. Russell Wilson doesn't do it for me, I'm not like everyone else where I like him just because he went to Wisconsin. I think his act is contrived, and I don't like how cocky he was after the Fail Mary game. Pete Carroll. He's the worst too. I'll never get that image of him of him standing by the ref when the final verdict for the touchdown came down that February night. So painful.
So thank you, Football Gods, for the Seahawks loss today. Now satisfy me with a New England win (one of the view people that like them outside of their geographical area, I was a big Drew Bledsoe guy) and then have New England advance to the Super Bowl over Atlanta. Let Mike Smith onside kick his way out of a title and give Tommy Boy another Lombardi Trophy.
This article was written by a shell of my former self.
This could be a confusing week if you're the owner of any Chicago Bears running back. It doesn't help the fact that they play on Monday night, so unless you have them super cuffed this may be a risk week. Let's rundown what we know.
Matt Forte returned to practice Wednesday from his ankle injury and though he has said he is "ready to go for Monday" the odds of Lovie Smith letting him play isn't strong.
Michael Bush also returned to practice on Wednesday after suffering a shoulder injury that kept him out of the fourth quarter. His injury is still a bit under wraps and even though he did reattend practice today, there is no word how heavy the work load is.
That leaves the only true healthy back in Chicago, Kahlil Bell. Bell would draw the start if neither Forte and Bush can go and probably has his eyes on a good workload even if Forte or Bush starts ahead of him. He is under 5% owned in all leagues right now, so if you're a Forte or Bush owner who is going to let it ride all the way to Monday night Bell is a must have.
I'm going to try to type daily to weekly articles on the one thing I am beyond passionate about, and that is Fantasy Football. Is this a desperate attempt to re-increase traffic flow to Bart's now defunct love child of a blog? Not really. This is however a chance to hopefully type up some things on something I feel I know what I am talking about, help your team, and maybe make you a few dollars.
A few dollars you say? Have I intrigued you yet? Now this is not a shameless promotion, they are in no way affiliated with this blog, I am in no way affiliated with them, but I have nothing but good things to say about DraftStreet.com. What is DraftStreet you ask? Well, to save the time, I will just take their intro:
At DraftStreet, you can currently join fantasy leagues for NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, PGA, NCAA FB, and NCAA BB. For each of these sports, you can play in free leagues or our fantasy sports money leagues and either draft your teams through a traditional, snake draft or through the salary cap format. With the salary cap format, you don’t have to wait for others to join the fantasy sports league and you can pick a team in under 5 minutes. With a snake format, you must wait for others to fill up the fantasy league before drafting, but can enter the draft room right away to queue up your players. League sizes range from 2 users to 20 users to guaranteed prize pool leagues, which allow for over 500 entries. The entry fees range from free to $2 to $420. With all of the league variations, there’s something for everyone! Sign up for a DraftStreet Free Game Today!
As I continue to build on these article, I hope you provide feedback, and other things you may want to know. Without feedback I am going on personal opinion, and personal belief. I would love to know what the community has to say, questions you have, trade idea's, add/drop conundrums, or any general question. Please feel free to post any Fantasy related questions in the comments and I will be sure to answer them to the best of my ability.
|You be the judge|
I've seriously typed this intro about ten different times. I don't know how to word it right. I don't know what you can really say what no one else hasn't already said. A blown call cost a team a football game and that's what it's going to be known as. Fail-Mary, Tate-Gate, The Golden Rule, call it whatever you wish, I'm just going to call it a cry for change.
Now, on a related note, I'm going to use this rarely used dead blog to get something off my chest. People on social media who troll Packer fans on this are basically just trolling themselves. It's a poor call and I say that as a football fan, not a Packers fan. If this was a Viking game I would be just as outraged at the outcome. There is a line between a fun rivalry and the lack of logic.
So, where I and my blogging friends lack the words, let's just let Twitter play us out:
"Any player/coach in Seattle that really thinks they won that game has zero integrity as a man and should be embarrassed." -T.J. Lang
"Fine me and use the money to pay the regular refs." -T.J. Lang
"That was bullshit. This is getting ridiculous! The NFL needs to get the refs back bfr we strike and they make no money" -Josh Sitton
"Golden tate is full of shit too. Saying he clearly caught that is embarrassing! Fucking jokers" -Josh Sitton
"13th man beat us tonight." -Tom Crabtree
"C'MON MAN! Can't even be upset anymore. All I can do is laugh. Laugh at the #NFL for allowing America's game to come this. WOW!" -Greg Jennings
"I'm staying off twitter for the night for my own good. Thanks again for all the support." -Packers Linebacker Dezman Moses
"I love this league and love the game of football, but tonight's debacle hurts me greatly. This is NOT the league we're supposed to represent." -Drew Brees
"Ironic that our league punishes those based on conduct detrimental. Whose CONDUCT is DETRIMENTAL now?" -Drew Brees
"I predict that after tonight, charities that are sponsored by player fines, will be at a all time high! #silverlining" - Saints Linebacker David Hawthorne
"Speechless after that..." -Robert Griffin III
"I simply just LOVE the NFL to much to see these mistakes. I'm sick like I just played for the Packers" -LeBron James
To end this with a little humor, this is by far my favorite Tweet of the night:
""BREAKING -JaMarcus Russell eyeing return to NFL after discovering games can be won by throwing interceptions.” -Desmond Bishop
I did a quick chat with Brian Carriveau on CheeseheadTV.com's Railbird Central this morning. He does a great job coming on my showon K107.1, so it was only fair I returned the favor.
Railbird Central: Previewing the Packers Preseason
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Wrestlemania 28 Predictions":
shut it down or update
Editor's Note: Gulp.
It's come to the point where not only do I watch wrestling on a regular basis, but now I'm more than comfortable talking about my appreciation for the, let's say, sport. And I'm actually at the point where I watch and read enough about the WWE that I feel I can make predictions which will turn out to be mostly accurate. So with my new found level of comfort "embracing the hate", let's dive through these predictions one by one.
WWE Tag Team Title Match - Epico & Primo (w/Rosa Mendes) (c) vs. The Uso Brothers vs. Tyson Kidd & Justin Gabriel
Didn't realize this match was on the card? Me neither, until Friday night when it was announced. The WWE has a had a habit lately of adding the tag title match to pay-per-view cards unannounced, so at least they gave this match two days for people to discover. Still, this appears to be the dark match, although it will stream live on WWE.com before the pay-per-view begins. Because of how haphazardly the Kidd and Gabriel team was thrown together, I have to think it's done in an effort to build a storyline into the tag division and therefore I could see them swooping to pick up the belts. But because it's off the main card, I expect Epico and Primo to retain and then begin a rivalry with Gabriel and Kidd that will play out on television until the former drop the belts to the latter.
Winner: Epico and Primo pin The Uso Brothers to retain
Kelly Kelly & Maria Menounos vs. Beth Phoenix & Eve
A terribly thrown together match to get both a) some divas on the card and b) a celebrity on the show. Although I won't be upset if you can't tell which one of those in the match is supposed to be the celebrity. Maria Menounos is one of the hosts on "Extra" and has also been a guest host of RAW on one occasion. She's also currently Dancing with the Stars right now, so I don't know how she's working in the time to fly to Miami from Hollywood to take part in Wrestlemania. Menounos is one of those people that seem to make a living off of random appearances like this. Trust me, that chick you've never heard of during the Celebrity All-Star Softball game or the DirecTV Flag Football competition? That's been Menounos for like the last three years. Expect to see some storyline progression out of Eve's character, but also expect the baby faces to come away with the win.
Winner: Kelly Kelly & Maria Menounos by pinfall (and a terrible performance on Dancing with the Stars for Menounos this Monday)
Randy Orton vs. Kane
Randy Orton and Kane are two guys that are at or near the top of the card at any given time. Randy Orton and Kane had no storylines or no rivals going into Wrestlemania. Randy Orton and Kane were not in any title chase. Thus, Randy Orton and Kane are going to fight each other only because they have no one else to fight. There really is no feud here, Kane attacked Orton after a match once and the two have been attacking each other ever since. This feud could have had some legs if Kane would have beat Cena at the Royal Rumble. Had that happened, Cena could have gone on a path to turning heel, while Kane could have been painted as someone out to destroy the top wrestlers in the WWE one at a time. Instead, we're getting a match that means very little and a match that I will make sure coincides with when the pizza arrives.
Winner: Randy Orton beats Kane with an RKO.
Team Teddy (Santino Marella & Kofi Kingston & R-Truth & Zack Ryder & The Great Khali & Booker T w/ Hornswoggle) vs. Team Johnny (Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger & David Otunga & The Miz & Drew McIntyre & Mark Henry w/ Vickie Guerrero)
It's the Get Everyone on the Card Match, and I'm disappointed we're getting it in the form of a twelve man tag match instead of something like a Money in the Bank ladder match. This match is going to be the comedy portion of the show, and also going to be very messy. Twelve guys, with a woman and whatever the hell you'd call Hornswoggle, plus the two general managers all at ringside at the same time is going to be tough to keep track of. Because I see the feud between John Lauranitis and Teddy Long continuing, I expect Team Johnny to get a victory by some nefarious means.
Winner: The Miz pins Kofi Kingston setting up a feud between them, Teddy Long is relegated to an assistant where he is put through embarrassing situations week after week on Smackdown.
WWE Intercontinental Title Match - Cody Rhodes (c) vs. The Big Show
Cody Rhodes is set up for big things in 2012, and I eventually see him dropping the IC title when he's elevated into the top of the card. But that's not going to happen quite yet, as Rhodes is going to get a Wrestlemania moment by taking down The Big Show. Rhodes has been great as a pest to The Big Show, bringing up all of the embarrassing Wrestlemania moments of his past throughout the last six weeks. Perhaps Show does get his hands on Rhodes by beating him up post match, but Rhodes is going to walk out of Wrestlemania the same way he walked in, as the IC champion.
Winner: Cody Rhodes by pinfall.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match - Daniel Bryan (c) (w/ A.J.) vs. Sheamus
My initial feelings on this card is that because the two main events are sure to be crowd pleasers, WWE can get away with having the heels come out on top in the other matches. I've seen a lot of people predicting Sheamus to win this match, but I'm not sure why he would. Daniel Bryan's character has been more developed during this build up, while Sheamus has been nothing more than a happy-go-lucky Irishmen. There's been plenty of times where the WWE has gone with a title change just for the hell of it, but I'd like to see them get more story out of these two men. They have something special with Bryan right now, and a loss for Sheamus could actually put some fire into him to really chase into him and really develop a rivalry between the two men.
Winner: Daniel Bryan pins Sheamus after some interference by A.J.
WWE Championship Match - C.M. Punk (c) vs. Chris Jericho
Jericho's return to the WWE was simply awesome, coming back and not talking for several weeks. But he quickly morphed back into the character he played when he left the WWE in 2011, which was disappointing in a way. But Jericho has been my favorite wrestler ever since I allowed myself to admit that I enjoy the WWE, although he's facing my second favorite in C.M. Punk. This is a tough match to call, because no one is really sure how long Jericho is going to stick around this time. But because of the personal angle to this match that has developed in recent weeks, I feel there is more of a story to tell yet with these two. To tell the story of a heel getting the better of a babyface, I think you need to have the babyface in chase mode. Let's see these two go at it a little longer.
Winner: Chris Jericho pins C.M. Punk, although the pin won't be entirely clean.
The Undertaker vs. Triple H (with Shawn Michaels as special referee)
20-0 will become a reality after tonight, I am 100 percent sure of that. But at some point during the match, I'm going to be convinced that the streak is going to end. The build for this match has been great and I think the match is going to be excellent. Even though I think Triple H's ego is big enough that he would be the one to end the streak, there is too much money in the Undertaker going 20-0. The Streak lives on.
Winner: Undertaker pins Triple H, then gives a Tombstone to Shawn Michaels and retires.
John Cena vs. The Rock
I don't like that this match has been booked for an entire year. I don't like how they had Cena continue to one-up The Rock during the last six weeks. I especially don't like the John Cena character, thinking that it's become incredibly stale. Yes, there is money in Cena being who he is and the money reason alone is why I think the Undertaker's streak stays alive. But in this case, I am praying for a John Cena heel turn. How is there not money in that? Hogan turned heel at one point. So did The Rock. Why can't John Cena? So many new possibilities, storylines, and matches could come out of a heel turn. You have plenty of current top babyfaces to pick up the void that Cena would leave (Punk, Orton, Sheamus). Plus, I want to see another Cena/Punk feud, or Cena/Orton feud, but this time with Cena as the bad guy.
It's not going to happen though. What will? It's hard to say. Do you give Rock the victory in his hometown? Do you give Cena the win to show that a part-time wrestler can't just come back and beat the full-time company man? Or can you not have a clean winner, and rather make sure both guys come out looking strong? There are a lot of big names in Miami right now, and I'm not going to spoil that for you if you haven't heard, but I do expect some interference in this match. I don't think you should have interference in this match, but I don't think the WWE knows who they want to win. The one prediction I am sure of? No matter what happens, we're going to groan about it.
Winner: Outside interference allows John Cena to build The Rock. Ten percent chance of legit heel turn, but unlikely.
Almost made you love me
Almost made you cry
Almost made you happy, baby
Didn't I didn't I
You almost had me thinkin'
You were turned around
But everybody knows
Almost doesn't count
Almost heard you saying
You were finally free
What was always missing for you, baby
You'd found it in me
But you can't get to heaven
Half off the ground
Almost doesn't count
I can't keep on lovin' you
One foot outside the door
I hear a funny hesitation
Of a heart that's never really sure
Can't keep on tryin'
If you're looking for more
Than all that I could give you
Than what you came here for
Gonna find me somebody
Not afraid to let go
Want a no doubt be there kind of man
You came real close
But everytime you built me up
You only let me down
And everybody knows
Almost doesn't count
Maybe you'll be sorry
Maybe you'll be cold
Maybe you'll come runnin' back, baby
From the cruel cruel world
Almost convince me
You're gonna stick around
But everybody knows
Almost doesn't count
So maybe I'll be here
Maybe I'll see ya around
That's the way it goes
Almost doesn't count
Vanderbilt's John Jenkin's shot hit the rim and hung up in the air for was wasn't quite an eternity, but at least enough time for me to think "Wow, that better not go in". It didn't and Ryan Evans muscled/pushed to grab the rebound, and the Badgers are heading to the Sweet 16 for the second year in a row.
We probably too often uses phrases like "willed the win" or gutted out the victory", but I really can't come up with more apt descriptions for this Wisconsin win. But don't get the wrong idea. This was not an upset. It was not the case of an underdog upsetting the better playing team. No, this was Wisconsin basketball. Not pretty or glamorous, but effective.
Let's look at the last possession when Wisconsin was up by 2.
1:22 remains: Rob Wilson rebound after missed free throw
3o seconds later: Missed 3 pointer by Evans, Berggren offensive rebound
35 seconds later: Missed 3 pointer by Taylor, Gasser offensive rebound
:17 remain: Gasser misses front end of 1-and-1
:04: Jenkins misses 3 pointer, Evans grabs rebound
:02: Evans makes 1 of 2 free throws
:02 Breggren blocks inbound pass, Badgers Win!
Yes, not pretty. Taylor hit the "winning" 3 pointer with 1:45 left, but all those little things mentioned contributed to the win. 5 Badgers scored in double figures and we will need this balance again on Thursday. Evans started off hot again. Brust and Brueser hit some big 3's. I enjoyed the gritty display despite how nervous I was at the end of the game.
Last note on Saturday's win, can everyone stop sweating Vanderbilt now?!!! I'm looking at you Dick Vitale, Seth Davis, and almost all of the ESPN "experts". Has there ever been a more overrated 5 seed? Damn.
Up Next: #1 Seed Syracuse. This one will come down to shooting. I'm sure you're shocked by this. Wisconsin played pretty poorly when Vanderbilt went into the zone late in the 2nd half. Wisconsin will need Brust and Wilson to be zone-breakers. Wisconsin will control the tempo, but it will need to make shots to make this pay off. There is no reason we cannot take this game!
Say what you will about the shortcomings of Bo Ryan teams in March, the Badgers are actually 10-1 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament (that's still what I'm calling it) under Ryan. The troubles usually come in the next couple rounds.
The Badgers took care of business on Thursday with a pretty dominating performance against the Montana Grizzlies. People love to pick Wisconsin to be upset early and there were a lot of Montana fans as they came in riding a 14 game winning streak, but this one was never really in doubt. Both teams came out hot, particularly Ryan Evans, but once the Badgers' D stepped it up (Jared Berggren with 7 blocks), the Badgers coasted to a comfortable victory. Jordan Taylor also had a great game with 17 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists, and 0 turnovers.
Now even though Bo Ryan's Wisconsin teams are 10-1 in the first round of the tourney, this does not mean there haven't been a few close ones. Just look at squeaker wins vs. 13 seed Wofford and 15 seed Texas A&M Corpus Christi. So, the relative ease of this win was a surprise, but well deserved.
If the Badgers can keep up the balanced offense (meaning they don't just stand around waiting for the shot clock to go under 10 and pass the ball to Taylor), continue to play strong on the defensive end, and get a 3's to drop for Bruesewitz, Brust, and Wilson, this team can keep rolling.
Next Up: Vanderbilt (pretty much the media darling of this tourney, everyone's sleeper that's not really a sleeper pick) 5:10 CST Saturday.
This will be a much tougher game. I expect a similar grind-it-out 4/5 match-up to last year's win vs. Kansas State.
We Want More (Beer)!
Now those are the goods. This whole impression started with J.P. Arencibia, and actually after listening to this one again I may have to deem this one the best.
Kurkjian tried to deliver some payback to Terry Francona with the help of Jonathan Papelbon, but it doesn't have the same punch. Although it is worth a laugh.
Good on you, ESPN. If nothing else you gave us an easy way to make a post without doing too much work (and this continues my string of making the same non-joke over and over Mike Florio style. Unless it doesn't.)
As a morning show radio host that works in Wisconsin and has a main target audience of women 25-54, it's safe to assume that I will be talking a lot about Donald Driver and Dancing with the Stars in the next few months. The 37-year Packers receiver (for now) will be one of the twelve contestants on the show's 14th season, to premiere Monday, March 19th on ABC. Now I do have to admit, outside of a Chris Jericho clip that might have been shown on Monday Night Raw (yes, I still watch that), I have never really seen too much of Dancing with the Stars. I get what it's about and I know the premise, but there has never really been a reason for me to sit down and watch the show. But I can guarantee you I will be watching on March 19th and hopefully well beyond that.
When the news broke this morning, it was a mad rush to Twitter - at least in Wisconsin - to see who could get their comments on the internet first. Surprisingly to me, while people did of course seem congratulatory to Driver, many people went out of their way to proclaim that they still wouldn't be watching the show even with Double D's presence. I can't necessarily say that I believe them, because I think once the show fires up they will find themselves in front of the TV on Monday nights just as I will.
To me, it's as much of me being obsessed with all things Packers as much as it is my general desire to want to root for them again. The 2011 season ended pretty abruptly and the wait until week one of 2012 feels awfully far away. If I have a reason to put on my Packers jersey once a week and root and cheer for tangible results, I'm going to take full advantage of that. So even though watching D-level celebrities dance isn't really my thing, I am more than ready to sit down and watch this thing get underway.
Let's take it one step further and get serious about it for a moment. Donald Driver has a fair chance to actually win this thing. Besides the obvious parallel between Driver and Hines Ward (a former Mirror Ball Trophy winner), the cast for this year's season is pretty weak in terms of both celebrity status and their dancing background. As it stands, Driver has the third best odds to win this season at 13/2 according to Bovada. Ahead of him are only Jaleel White (Urkel!) and William Levy (no idea who this guy is, not even a remote guess either). The full list of contestants can be found here, and it's a list that includes Maria Menounos (who is in everything), Martina Navratilova, and Gavin DeGraw (another favorite of my 25-54 female audience). I would at least expect Donald Driver to make it to the final five.
The question is though, does Driver have a more likely chance to be a Dancing with the Stars champion than a member of the Green Bay Packers when the finale is shot this May? Driver's time with the Packers seems to be winding down, not only because guys like Randall Cobb are ready to replace him in his role but because the Packers have guys on the practice squad right now that are better skill-wise. In no way am I endorsing the release of Donald Driver, but in no way will I be surprised if his release does happen. Was part of the reason that Driver signed up for this dancing competition his thought that it might keep him in a Green and Gold uniform? I'm not sure exactly, but I think that case can be made.
Regardless, I finally have a reason to watch dancing with the Stars, although it's not like I was looking for one. Driver may not even be a Packer two month from now, but as long as he's wearing a dancing uniform and not that of one of the other 31 teams in the NFL, I can still root for him a little bit longer.
I suppose a better title would be "Just when you thought the Badgers' season was done for..." or "Just when you thought the Badgers' season would be nothing more than mediocre....", but given the state of this blog, I thought this title would be a bit more dramatic.
Anyways, after the .... in any of those titles, add "Wisconsin wins at Ohio State", saving the Badgers' season and The Bucky Channel.
This one was a surprise. The Badgers Bball team won in Columbus, doing what the football team could not. This was a big win, the first for Wisconsin over a top 10 team on the road since 1980 (that one is surprising), and it keeps them in the top 4 of the Big Ten. Now don't get me wrong, the most likely scenario is that Wisconsin is an average team this year. We have seen that with 2 losses to Iowa and a bad loss to Michigan, but aside from those, the rest of our losses have been close ones to Top 10 teams. We can still hold hope of pulling off some UCONN-esque run or maybe more fittingly, a run similar to the 2000 Badger team.
Lots of positives to take from Sunday's win:
- Jordan Taylor shot over 50% from the field
- Ryan Evans and Jared Berggren have continued to usually be consistent 2nd and 3rd scorers.
- Balance - with the off the bench spark from Rob Wilson in recent games, 5 players scored 7 points or more.
- Poise in crunch time
- Doing the things we usually do well - went 9-11 from the free throw line and only turned the ball over 7 times
- Defending the big man - Wisconsin has struggled this season against Sullinger and Draymon Green, but on Sunday they held Sullinger to 8 points, the second lowest of his Big Ten career.
On the flip side of those positives:
- With that said balance - 5 players scoring 7 or more - those 5 players were the only players to score for Wisconsin and only 6 players took shots.
- Mike Bruesewitz - Apparently effort and fearlessness is not enough sometimes, even for a Bo Ryan team. Bruesewitz is under sized, and with the improved play of Ryan Evans, he's seeing a lot more time on the bench.
- Ben Brust - his hot start has cooled down, as he scored 0 points in 4 of his last 7 games, only scoring 10 points once in that span, but that is not unexpected for a player seeing such a large increase in minutes from the previous season.
All and all, a fun win, one that allows us Badger fans to maintain a slight glimmer of hope for a special season as March approaches.
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