Saturday, March 1, 2008

I Watched Baseball Today (and Other Random Rants)

Ahh, March 1st. "Spring" is 20 days away and the baseball season is just a mere 30. Devo is absolutely right, there's really no reason to watch Spring Training games. We're far away from things that matter, far away from fangasms, and (hopefully) very far away from end-of-season collapses. With that being said, I still gave a little yelp yesterday at the gym when I saw actual baseball on ESPN. It was Braves/Dodgers and Atlanta was winning 10-2. STILL it was baseball. Semi-known players were on the field. There was sun and warmth. Eye-black was involved. I was happy.
Today I watched the Mets play the Dodgers in their first Spring Training win (took them long enough, not that it matters). Some young pitchers impressed Gary, Keith and me. They interviewed Pat the Pin Lady. Probably the worst thing that happened today is that Ryan Church and Marlon Anderson had a collision. They both walked off the field, Marlon by himself, Ryan Church (he's new, so I'm not sure what I'll be calling him yet) with some help. RC (no, I don't like that nickname) didn't look too good though. As he was being escorted to the dugout, he kinda had that blank, woozy look on his face: kinda like he had spent the entire night before and afternoon at the Tiki Bar at Tradition Field and one of his buddies had to walk him home. After seeing that, I wasn't surprised to find out that he had a concussion. We'll see how long he's out and if Marlon is out for any time also. Carlos Delgado is having an MRI in New York today, so the injury news isn't so great for the New York Mets.
Meanwhile, there was a little program on TV last Sunday called the Academy Awards. I thought it was great! I got to see Persepolis on Saturday. That was one of the nominated Best Animated Features, but it lost to Ratatouille. How exactly do you compare a movie about rats cooking to a movie about a girl growing up in war-torn Iran? Is the award based on animation? Plot? Voice acting? Either way, my favorite moment was when Marketa Irglova from Once got to come out and give her acceptance speech. My favorite dress was Katherine Heigl's and my least favorite dress was Jennifer Hudson's (eek).
Last Saturday, the first new SNL after the writers' strike aired. Tina Fey did a great job, but she did talk about how Hilary Clinton was a bitch and mentioned that women kinda need to be bitches to get ahead in the world. I dunno how I feel about that Liz Lemon!

Friday, February 29, 2008

NHL Trade Deadline ANalysis

The trade deadline has come and gone, and so with that it is time to look back on each trade and determine, on paper, which team won the deal. In part two of my deadline fallout I will take a look at each individual deal that happened and give my two cents on whether or not it helped the teams involved or not.

Wade Belak (Toronto) for 5th Round Pick (Florida)
Analysis: Belak does little more than fight, so I don’t really see why Florida wanted him. He was worth a late pick at best. As Toronto was looking to stock up picks and prospects Fletcher was going to get whatever he could for an expendable player like Belak.
Winner: Toronto

Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis (Atlanta) for Erik Christenssen, Colby Armstrong, Angelo Esposito and a 1st round pick (Pittsburgh) ‎
Analysis: Pittsburgh gets the biggest name on the market and a winger for Crosby and Atlanta gets four building blocks for the future. The chances of Pittsburgh being able to resign Hossa with Crosby’s new deal beginning next year plus Malkin due one the following, are quite slim making him a rental. However, he provides a big boost to an already potent offense. Atlanta recoups some of what they lost in bad deadline deals last year, getting two young players to help now, plus a once highly touted prospect in Esposito and what will amount to a late round pick.
Winner: Atlanta

Cristobol Huet (Montreal) for 2nd round pick in 2009 (Washington)
Analysis: With the aging Kolzig and no one in the system the Caps needed a goalie of the future, and the got it in Huet for a mere second round pick. Number one goalies never go for so little, even when the goalie market is low. Caps make out like bandits and Montreal takes a big risk in handing their cup hopes to a rookie goalie for the playoffs.
Winner: Washington

Brad Stuart (LA) for a 2nd and 4th round picks (Detroit)
Analysis: Though not having a stellar year, Stuart is reliable in both ends. The price was reasonable and the Wings needed someone to replace their four injured defenseman, and when they come back they will have additional depth. Stuart is a UFA at years end so there is a chance LA would have lost him for nothing so they got what they could. It should work out for both teams.
Winner: Even

Brad Richards and Johan Holmqvist (Tampa Bay) for Mike Smith, Jussi Jokinen, Jeff Halpern and a 4th round pick (Dallas) ‎
Analysis: Tampa needed to rid themselves of salary and were able to get Richards to waive his NTC. Dallas gets a top flight center that will be able to replace the aging Modano and lighten the load on the older players. Tampa gets a large contract off the books and gets a young goalie and forward depth that they desperately need. Despite the fact people say it’s heavily in favor of Dallas, they neglect to mention Richards deal is still a cap killer. Though both teams got what they needed, Richards is still a very good player moved out of necessity, so Dallas gets the edge.
Winner: Dallas

Adam Foote (Columbus) for conditional 1st round pick and a 4th round pick (Colorado) ‎
Analysis: Colorado brings back another member of their previous cup winning team in Foote (Forsberg being the other) and though aging is still rugged and reliable. Columbus couldn’t come to terms with the blue liner and was forced to deal him rather than losing him for nothing, something Foote sounded upset about. The price for an old an injured defenseman though was a bit high, even if it is conditional.
Winner: Even

Hal Gill (Toronto) for a 2nd in '08 and a 5th in '09 (Pittsburgh)
Analysis: Pittsburgh needed a big, physical defenseman to clear the crease and Gill fits that bill. Though nothing special he is better than some of the Pens other options. Still a second and fifth is a high price for a guy another team was trying to unload for cap space.
Winner: Toronto

Jean Sebastian Aubin (LA) for 7th round pick (Anaheim)
Analysis: A pure depth move, for a pick that more than likely will amount to nothing.
Winner: Even

Christian Backman (St. Louis) for a 4th round pick (New York Rangers)
Analysis: Backman adds a physical blue line presence the Rangers don’t have much along with a stay at home presence they also lack. St Louis had an abundance of defensemen that were becoming UFA’s so were looking to get something for them. I think New York gets more of what they needed though.
Winner: New York

Sergei Fedorov (Columbus) for Teddy Ruth (Washington)
Analysis: A stay at home defenseman that was drafted in the second round in 2007, Ruth doesn’t seem to be on many people’s radars. Though Fedorov has lost a step or five it’s hard to imagine this was all he could fetch. Washington gets a center to help out Ovechkin and adds veteran experience as they push for the playoffs while Columbus gets pretty much nothing.
Winner: Washington

Alexandre Giroux for Joe Motzko
Analysis: Pretty much a minor league swap, no real advantage for either team.
Winner: Even

Chris Simon (New York Islanders) for a 6th round pick (Minnesota)
Analysis: Minnesota already had Derek Boogaard and Todd Fedoruk, yet somehow saw the need to trade for Simon who carries a ton of baggage. Mindless deal and a waste of a 6th, and 6th’s usually aren’t considered a waste.
Winner: New York

Bryce Salvador (St. Louis) for Cam Janssen (New Jersey)
Analysis: Salvador is a decent stay at home with a physical edge, Janssen is a goon that doesn’t have much real value and is only known for hitting Tomas Kaberle late. Geez, wonder who won this one?
Winner: New Jersey

Marc-Andre Bergeron (New York Islanders) for 3rd rounder (Anaheim)
Analysis: A depth move by Anaheim, but Bergeron has been much maligned the past few years by both Edmonton and New York fans, and for good reason. A third for him is too high for a guy that will bee more insurance than anything.
Winner: New York

Brian Campbell and 7th (Buffalo) for Steve Bernier and a 1st round pick (San Jose)
Analysis: San Jose finally got the high end defenseman they were looking for in Campbell. In return Buffalo gets a big young forward that has a bright future and a first round pick in a deep draft. Still, their failure to get more for the biggest name defenseman at the deadline where there weren’t a lot of them available tips this in San Jose’s favor.
Winner: San Jose

Chad Kilger (Toronto) for 3rd rounder (Florida)
Analysis: Kilger has actually played well for Toronto but still gets crap for some reason. He can add some secondary scoring to Florida along with decent defensive play. However, I don’t think he is worth a third.
Winner: Toronto

Martin Lapointe (Chicago) for 6th round pick (Ottawa)
Analysis: Lapointe adds good lower line depth and grit, and all Ottawa had to do was give up a sixth. Chicago shouldn’t have let him go for such a low price.
Winner: Ottawa

Josh Gratton, Patrick Sjostrom and David Leneveu and a conditional pick (Phoenix) for Marcel Hossa and Al Montoya (New York Rangers)
Analysis: Henrik Lundqvist’s extension sealed Montoya’s fate and his dealing was inevitable, the Rangers dealing him with the inconsistent Marcel Hossa for the similar but more consistent Sjostrom and tough guy Gratton. Leneveu, at one time the Yotes goalie of the future seems to be destined for backup duty anymore if that. Montoya will be in the minors for a while then play behind Bryzgalov until he is ready to take the reigns.
Winner: Phoenix

Jan Hlavac (Tampa Bay) for 7th round pick (Nashville)
Analysis: Hlavac has done little in recent years, and a 7th rounder isn’t much of anything. Sadly, a nothing-nothing swap.
Winner: Even

Matt Cooke (Vancouver) for Matt Pettinger (Washington)
Analysis: Cooke adds some grit and toughness to Washington’s playoff run and Vancouver gets someone who is a little more skilled.
Winner: Even

Andrew Ladd (Carolina) for Tuomo Ruutu (Chicago)
Analysis: A swap of talented young players, Ladd is more finesse and Ruutu more grit. Unfortunately Ruutu is often injured and it really hurts his effectiveness, so for that reason Chicago gets the edge in the deal.
Winner: Chicago

Vaclav Prospal (Tampa Bay) for Alexandre Picard and 2009 conditional pick (Philadelphia)
Analysis: I’ve never been a Prospal fan, seemingly only doing well when placed on Lecavalier’s wing (what a surprise). Still he’s not bad and will help offset the losses of Richards and Gagne for extended periods. Tampa reportedly couldn’t come to terms so got what they could in a young defenseman (something Feaster really wants) and a conditional 2nd or 3rd round pick.
Winner: Tampa Bay

Ruslan Salei (Florida) for Karlis Skrastins + 3rd rounder (Colorado)
Analysis: Florida seemed to want to trim some salary and traded the physical Salei for \ Skrastins and a third round pick. Salei will add good depth and experience to the Avs blue line and the now oft scratched Skrastins will get more playing time in Florida.
Winner: Colorado

Corporate Stoogery: Office species Part I

As we at SUS try to bring you the latest in not just sports but all walks of life, it’s time we take some time to go after the corporate world because frankly is there a better way to waste the company’s time? Well consider it even for only getting paid for 40 hours a week. Bitter much? yes. Yes i am.

Ok so most of you all work except of course you grad students but I’m sure you’ve all worked. (If you haven’t might I suggest I don’t know… maybe GET A JOB YOU WORTHLESS ASSHOLE.) Anyway, at any office you have a number of various characters that truly make the day interesting and or a pain in the ass. Some may even call it a jungle out there. Here is part 1 of a list of characters that I’ve encountered in my all too brief 3+ years of stoogery.

Kiss Ass

Shockingly, the kiss ass is still alive and well and likely kissing their way up the ladder in an office near you. You don't need to know the decision makers. All you need to do is know the people that influence the decision makers. Boom.. less work for you and more for someone else. While you can put your feet up and go to lunch for about hours more. To become one of these, you need to say cool business catchphrases like too much on my plate, connect, reconnect, EOD, i'll check in with you, I need you to be more, etc. The kiss ass also enjoys making long personal calls, frequent trips to the lavatories, frequent smoke breaks, aimless wondering and socializing.

Super Kiss Ass

Super Kiss Ass is the above except generally considered relatively attractive. As a result, the Super Kiss Ass’s ability is nearly doubled into an unstoppable freight train that you will be unable to say no to. Not to mention neither will the company hire ups. Eventually, these people get old and their looks wither away or they are found out to have no real ideas of substance or merit.

Dinosaur Kiss Ass

This subspecies of the Ass Kisser really has to walk that fine line of ass kicking because it’s all he/she has left. This is the guy/girl that’s in his late 50s but not rich enough to fully retire so he/she has to kiss ass in order to keep his job. Luckily at this age, the person knows all the tricks except how to send emails, print things and use a computer but really no one in the work setting knows how to use those.


Nope it’s not high school anymore but those mofuckin’ Jocks are still alive and well. Sure their numbers are decreasing but some of them haven’t bothered to check their emails or blackberries and realized that their schtick is old and whithered. The majority of them are in their early 20s or facing an identity crisis in their late 30s and 40s. The Jock is loud, obnoxious and will not take no for answer. He can be found around the water cooler so he can update you on his latest life occurrences whether you want to hear them or not. He also “goes to the gym” thinking people should be astonished by that. I mean really only 95% of America frequent gyms anyway.

The Hard Worker

The person that gets to work early and has to make everyone aware of that. Listen, congrats, you wake up early and stay late. Good for you! That's what happens when you are more a less a glorified meeting organizer. It's not my fault you have evolved past the fact there is more to life than a job. The hard worker also enjoys sending out messages via blackberry or pc during the day and at odd hours at night. You also love the cc. It's your best friend and partner. You like bringing him along when someone makes a mistake. But when you realize you are the fucker-upper, you hide it. You also love sending emails with the big red ! because frankly you must get noticed and other people must get the work done.

Hard worker also has a sibling called hard work0r. These are the people that cry about being overworked when really all they do is micromanage and sit on meetings. I'm sorry, but going to meetings isn’t work. You are not doing anything other than talking, so STFU and stop crying about your work. You get paid more so stop giving out your job responsibilities to people below you. Hard work0rs also tend to say job buzz words when in reality have zero idea what they are talking about. You just transfer words to your underlings without explaining shit. They also stay late but this is due to the fact that they don't do work during the day and they can't get away with not doing it tomorrow. Their explanations also tend to be full of shit in a circular and making-no-sense manner.

The Does Jack Shit-er

This person treats the office as one's own personal playground. They don't actually do any work until specifically asked to by someone for something. Otherwise, they are more than happy to have all their friends call in to work, or go out for a 2 hour lunch. If they are high enough on their corporate ladder, they dump the work on their assistants or associates. When this happens, they also tend to become highly motivated and stressed out but not to actually do the work. They also proofread things because really what more is out there for them to do.

The Hipster

The hipster is too hip and cool. They wear really cool ripped jeans and shades, wear a tshirt but jazz it up with a hip sports coat. Ya its really cool. They also gotta play music at their office and eat all these trendy expensive places. The hipster can be seen listening to a cool new british band and having really obscure art on their walls. The hipster is cool. You also say cool things like right on, totally, that’s sexy etc. Did i mention skateboards people, SKATEBOARDS!!!!!

The Burn Out

Burn out is one who either works really hard and finally loses it going insane or one who decided to take acid a little more than the USDA allotted before becoming clinically insane. Suffice to say they are a mess and on their own planet and scatter brained to all hell. Though sadly, these people are a trip during company parties and happy hours and that's why we love em. Cheers to you Burn out!

Office manager

The hey i'm a good guy but do actually nothing so they gave this job where I fix the printers and feed the fish. You just walk around and point at random things and make sure someone isn't looking at porn or anything. Oh and you clean out the company fridge. Congrats on a very important life. You make us all very proud.

Blogging Douchebag

There’s that one asshole in the office that has a blog with some friends and has to decide to update it during work. So instead of actually doing things necessary and vital to his many clients, he goes on and on and writes about the truly important things like say uh Guitar Hero. Sure some would say he neglects enough work via aim and various Steeler and Penguin message boards but alas he moves forward, undaunted. Until he realizes that it’s about 7:15 pm and he really needs to fix that TPS report.

Tune in next week as we meet the rest of those zany office characters.

Black History Month SUS Style: The Wire-Part III: City Hall and other badass characters

City Hall

Former Mayor Clarence Royce
Was Mayor for seasons 1, 2, and part of 3. Loved power. Loved women. Basically a Baltimore Marion Barry. No complaints on my end.

Mayor Tommy Carcetti
Basically the fictional equivalent of current Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley. Power hungry sonuvabitch who probably cares about the people but REALLY cares about becoming Governor in a few years. If you want to talk about the impact of this show, Carcetti’s character has made me lose some respect for the real life O’Malley. Ironically enough, people in Maryland hate O’Malley as much as most Baltimore people hate Carcetti.

Jennifer Carcetti
Tommy’s wife. I have nothing to add, except that her picture is fairly bizarre.

Norman Wilson
Tommy’s right hand man. For the first 5 episodes that his character appeared, I thought Lester Freamon switched jobs.

Clay Davis
Best. Politician. Ever. Davis makes Marion Barry look as honest as Jimmy Carter. Lester Freamon was working on his case for years, and did a damn good job too, only to have Davis perform masterfully on the witness stand and get an acquittal. His most famous line is ‘shhheeeeeeiiiiiiiiitttt,’ and let’s just say that there is some truth to the rumor that BH and myself were in works to create a “Free Clay Davis” t-shirt until the good people of Baltimore did the job themselves.

Badass Characters

These are far and away the two best characters on The Wire. To go with their descriptioins, brief Youtube clips are required to do their characters justice.

A career street thug with a code. He makes his living by pointing his shotgun at drug dealers and stealing their stash. In the mean streets of Baltimore, no one is feared more by other street thugs and respected by cops more than Omar. Barksdale’s crew tried to take Omar out but they never could. Prop Joe tried to take out Omar but never could. Marlo tried to take out Omar, and unfortunately, succeeded. This is reason 5,204 that Marlo needs to die in the series finale. Oh, and Omar was gay. Very much so.

Brother Muzzone
The most well-read criminal of all time. An ex-Nation of Islam member who probably isn't exactly following in Malcolm X's footsteps. He scares the hell out of everyone, Avon and Stringer brought him in to protect their corners against Prop Joe in season 2. After taking care of business, Stringer tried to set him up by telling Omar that Muzzone killed one of his people. After wounding him, Muzzone convinced Omar that Stringer set them up. And that’s how Stringer Bell met his demise. When he’s not out there shooting people to prove a point, he can be spotted in his glasses and bowtie, reading The Atlantic or The Nation.

And finally, just because:

Enjoy the final episode a week from Sunday!

SUS Rules for Complaining about the Post-Super Bowl Giants

With Torbor and Kawika Mitchell gone, and Zak DeOssie possibly penciled in as a starting OLB, I figure that now is as good a tie as any to discuss this. It will be ongoing, but these are the rules that we have so far. Feel free to tell us about your own rules:

1. You can always complain about bad moves, play calls, decisions, or plays.
2. The earliest that you can demand a benching (Eli) or a firing (Coughlin, Reese, Gilbride) is Thanksgiving. And even then, this pretty much has to involve a 50 QB rating, a 3-8 record, or calling for 10 halfback passes per game.
That said, it would've been nice to keep Mitchell.

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Who gives a shit about Basketball? Who cares if catchers are putting on their jockstraps and cups? Who cares about cars always turning left? The Devils always make the playoffs! The Olympics? Last event I recall watching was curling and that’s the wrong season! Fear not Football fans, as hard as the off-season is for some of us, any news or events get us psyched up and anticipating the next season. In my mind baseball doesn’t start until after April’s draft. So without further ado;

Parcells would love to trade out of this pick but I don’t see that happening. It’s quite interesting; free agency is thin at DE/OLB but strong in the draft. I can’t see Parcells taking Ryan after the team invested a 2nd round pick in QB John Beck last year. I hear Testeverde is coming back, again?

This really depends on his pro-day workout. All the injury speculations could lower him to the ladder of the top 10. Jake Long is a solid right tackle as he’s not very quick footed to play left tackle. Plus with Orlando Pace coming back and drafting RT Alex Barron in 05, their tackle positions are pretty much set. They need to address the middle of the defense.

They need a lot of everything. Honestly it would be wise for them to trade down out of this position. And teams eager to get Darren McFadden would be wise to trade up here (Dallas). But if there are no takers, Ryan’s the best choice. They could go after Derek Anderson but I see that highly unlikely now.

Along with the Atlanta Falcons this is a team that no one really wants to play for. Al Davis needs to die real soon or let fresh minds take over. Jamarcus Russell and McFadden would be a nice duo for years to come. Sedrick Ellis is possible but not after they spent $50mill on Kelly. Clearly they aren’t looking for a DT in the draft.

Herm Edwards should be thanking the football Gods that Jake Long falls to him at #5. He hasn’t drafted well in the past but this one is a no brainer that even I wouldn’t FUKK up. Biggest need this offseason is that offensive line and this man is a blessing (especially for all Larry Johnson fantasy owners out there).

We all saw how the pass rush of the Giants overwhelmed the Patriots O-Line. If the Jets want to challenge the Pats for the division (or at least double last year's win total) then they need to work on their pass rush real quick. Chris Long would be ideal but I don’t see him dropping out of the top 3. I’ll throw my roommates cat at the TV if I see them trade up and lose picks again like last year (not the new LCD of course, her TV). Jets need playmakers and Ghoulston is certainly that. The others will have to come in later rounds and free agency.

The problem with picking corners is that they tend to rise and fall more than any other position prior to draft day in my opinion. Talib could be a 1st round pick this week but then when Mel Kiper takes him off his big board he’s a 2nd rounder at best. Asante Samuel is going to be asking for Nate Clements money and Satan “666” Kraft won’t give it to him so the chokers need to fill that spot with this pick.

Unless Brian Brohm has a terrific combine and starts sucking Mel Kiper off there’s no way he’s going top 10 much to the dismay of the Ravens. So with their secondary starting to age it’s time for Rex Ryan and company to bring in some youth. I rate Jenkins and Talib as the best corners in the draft but again that could change. Jenkins would be a safe pick for Baltimore.

Marvin Lewis is obviously a better defensive coordinator than a head coach. Same goes for his old boss Brian Billick (seems to be a common trend coming from the Raven organization). If Lewis still wants his job then the Bengals better make the playoffs. Their defense was horrific last season (Cleveland scored 50+pts!). Sedrick Ellis is a great addition to one of the worst rush defenses in the league.

I really don’t know what the Saints are going to do with this pick. My first guess would be linebacker but like I said before, very weak. I would figure defensive tackle but with Ellis and Dorsey off the board then anyone else would be a reach. Jason David is obviously no better than a nickelback and is a waste of cap space. New Orleans needs a #1 corner as bad as Mike McKenzie needs a haircut.

Elect John McClane

Hate politics? Me too.

Hate the candidates? I'm with ya.

Don't want to decide who gets your vote by watching with meaningless debates where they just lie out their asses? Of course not.

Wish we had someone kick ass again like Teddy Roosevelt who got shot, beat the shit out of the guy and then finished his speech? Damn right you do.

That man exist. And that man is John McClane.

Go here for more details

Hey SUS, spring training has begun, where you at?

Look, I'll be honest: we've been getting pounded with ridiculous amounts of viewer email asking why we're not covering baseball. And the truth, loyal readers, is that frankly, I don't see what there is to write about.

Sure, there's the Clemens issue, and BH covered that. But to cover it every day like we're the New York Post to Clemens' Britney Spears cooch? Eh. I'll pass. I've gone on record many times as saying I really don't care because even as a Yankee fan, I always hated Clemens. (My level of hate for Clemens never went below a Hyman Roth-Vito Corleone "I'll do business with him, I respect him, but I don't trust him" level) So yeah, I hope Clemens goes to jail, found guilty for being an asshole. But I really don't care that he cheated. Sorry.

But what's that you say? Spring training is on the horizon? Great. As soon as she's done folding Mahatma's whites, we'll be sure to send the SUS intern out to Phoenix to document the Royals' latest run at a perfect spring training. (Hey Mercury Morris, David DeJesus has rounded the corner and is currently on your block. You've been warned.) The fact is, outside of injuries, nothing that happens in spring training matters unless you have young guys trying to make a squad or a position battle. And sure, you have some of those around the league. But when it comes to the Yankees, I'm not about to write an article about why Jason Giambi/Shelley Duncan/Morgan Ensberg/Mahatma deserves the first base job, because either way, they all suck. Though Mahatma has solid range.

So have faith, dear SUS reader (and seriously, have faith b/c my inbox only holds so much mail) for we'll have the 1st annual SUS fantasy baseball draft soon, MissMet will begin her Met updates soon enough, White Boy will eventually wake up from his SUS-coma to write something about the Yankees, (or anything) and we'll probably even have another Mets and a Red Sox writer for you. And when something interesting regarding baseball happens, I'll probably stick in my two cents. But for now, have patience, and stop asking me for $3.50, you goddamn Loch-Ness Monster.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Where's White Boy? Trying to learn his technology.

I'm minding my business tonight, looking up various Craigs List casual encounters (what else is a single lad to do on Wednesday evening in suburban Maryland?) when I get an im from white boy's blackberry. He was texting a girl's about a date this weekend, but the ims were sent to me. You can tell I was annoyed at first but then just decided screw it, I'm going to play along. Anyways, here's a copy of it:

White Boy: Sent from my mobile using EQO
WB: thats fine can i call now for like 5 mins or is she still there
Devo: are you sure this was meant for me?
WB: heh so do u want to just figure out saturday tomorrow though i dare not infringe upon sis bonding
WB: i mean then not though
D: uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
WB: what time will u be out of the show about
D: i'm not going to a show
D: white boy, it's devo
WB: oh so u want to just figure it out now over aim its up to u?
D: yeah, sure, i should be out around 10 or so
WB: i was thinking dinner and "base ket ball" but if there is movie playing now that peaks ure interest im game
D: what about charlie bartlett, that looks like a cute movie
WB: ill call u friday or text u friday about locale what time for dinner were u thinking
D: probably about 8?
WB: 8 sounds fine ill speak to u via text or phone friday enjoy the show!
D: you know i will!

ps-for those of you looking to stalk white boy this weekend, well you know where to find him!

Grunting is a God-given right, not a privilege

From my friend ESPN:

A 9-year-old Australian girl has been banned from playing tennis at her local club over the noise she makes while competing. The Herald Sun of Melbourne, Australia, reported that Lauryn Edwards was told last weekend that she could no longer play after an opposing player complained about her grunting. Edwards' favorite player is Maria Sharapova. And like her hero, Edwards grunts when she strikes the ball. "They told me to guarantee she won't grunt or she can't play," Duncan Edwards[the girl's father] said, according to the report. "How can I guarantee that? She's been doing it since she was really little. She's her own person. What do they want me to do? Put Band-Aids over her mouth?" he added. "They made her cry on the court when they told her. She was in such a state that I had to bring her home mid-match." She says the grunting is part of her game. "It feels natural to do my noise. I'm not faking it," she said, according to the Herald-Sun. "It makes me play better. When I don't do it, I don't play my best tennis. And now people have told me I can't play if I do it."

Now, usually I'm big on organizations being able to set their own rules, but I have to call BULLSHIT on this. Asking this girls father to "guarantee" she wont grunt during a match is like asking me to make sure the Dow doesn't dip below 10,000. I can try, but that's about it. Little girls(and boys) do all sorts of weird shit, and God help you if you try to tell them to stop. I mean, its obvious that the other girls shes playing against are intimidated, and that's part of her game. Nothing wrong with that. As far as my tennis knowledge goes, its the audience that is prohibited from making noise during a point, not the players. So Northern Suburbs Junior Tennis Association members, you may be able to silence one 9 year-old girl, but you cant silence Straight Up Sports. And yes, Maria Sharapova being mentioned in the article is enough justification to put up a picture of her.

Isn't this like replacing Ray Handley with Rich Kotite???

Sean Salisbury is out at ESPN. Cris Carter is in. The real winners here? CBS and FOX.

Some quotes via some random blog via the LA Times (You can't spell journalism ethics without SUS):

"I'm a free agent," he said. "I've been liberated. I knew this was coming, but I couldn't be happier.

You know who else is a free agent? Luis Sojo. I don't Theo Epstein and Brian Cashman are lining up at his door.

"I'd grown tired of being punished for not being an NFL superstar. Analysts who don't work as hard as me, don't prepare as hard as me, and don't have my resume were making more than me just because of their ability to throw or catch a pass."

SUS RESPONSE: You know what's worse than Sean Salisbury the quarterback? Sean Salisbury the commentator.

"Don't get me wrong, I appreciated the opportunity ESPN gave me, but they had capped my ceiling. There was only so far I could go there.

SUS RESPONSE: It makes us feel warm inside to know that the ESPN brass had a discussion along these lines:

"Sure, I want Salisbury to cover this piece, but let's go with someone who is better at his job, like Stuart Scott."
"We could go with Salisbury, but let's go with someone who has come up with more original ideas over the last 5 years, like Chris Berman."

"I'd done nothing wrong, and if you hear otherwise, it's not true. I did everything that was asked of me."

SUS RESPONSE: What about the times that you sucked at your job?

p.s. Let no one out there think that we like Cris Carter, who along with Dan Marino did everything in their power, and eventually succeeding, in killing Inside the NFL.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Im a hockey fan again!

In keeping with the apparent hockey theme of the blog today, Id like to announce that Ive signed a contract with the NHL to be a fan for the remainder of the regular season and this years Stanley Cup playoffs. My attorneys and agents have been in extended negotiations with the NHL's Fan Satisfaction Division (wouldn't it be nice if that were real?) since shortly before the lockout of a few years ago, when I voided my previous contract as a fan of the league. Now some have told me that I am foolish or opportunistic for this decision to return to a sport that brought me so much joy before breaking my heart. No sir, I say to the charge, everyone, and every sport deserves a second chance. And besides, if I gave a shit about what other people think of my sports affiliations, Id be a Yankee fan.

So, what brought me back you ask? Two alliterative names, Foppa and Footer. Both Peter Forsberg and Adam Foote were acquired at/near todays trade deadline by the Colorado Avalanche, with whom I had a torrid affair from 1995-2004. Lets take a quick look at these two:

The former "greatest hockey player in the world", Peter "Foppa" Forsberg was a wizard with the puck, making impossible passes and leaving everyone but elitest of defenders in the snowy spray of his dust. Alas, the man has lost a step. Mainly this is due to the Devils-friendly rules that dominated the NHL for the last 15ish years that allowed a more defensive-minded and brutal game. Teams quickly realized that the only way to beat Foppa was to injure him. 10 years of grueling playoff series' where hacking and slashing Forsberg was job #1 for opposing teams turned even this solid soldier into an injury trainwreck. Even now, Foppas return is not guaranteed despite the $5mil pro-rated contract he just signed, as his ankle may limit him, or even prevent him from suiting up at all. Regardless what he ends up contributing to the Avalanche this season, Peter Forsberg is still the baddest Swede on the block, ya heard?

The other major acquisition for the Avalanche is defenseman Adam Foote. Im sure my brother is excited at this pick-up, as his Foote sweater is suddenly relevant again. Foote was our hitter, the bad mofo who you didn't want to see coming your way if you had the puck and were near the boards. A solid defender in every aspect of the game(ok, not that great running the point on power play), Foote has been one of the cornerstones of the Columbus Blue Jackets since signing with them after the lockout.

So watch out NHL, we have a pack of injury-ridden middle aged men in Denver who are hungry to recapture the glory of the past. Now that makes me want to watch some hockey.


So long, and good luck Cam.

Wait, aren't you guys supposed to be a sports blog? (Catching up with the Devils Part I)

Yup. It's that time again. Time to check in with your Eastern-Conference-leading New Jersey Devils! Last we left our Black and Red Crusaders, they were playing surprisingly well, 26-15-3, 55 points, 1st in the Atlantic, 2nd in the East. Since then, they've gone 11-6-4, a steady 26 points in 21 games, and are now 37-21-5, 79 points, 1st place in the East. They're facing some pressure from the Penguins (even without Crosby) within the division. Outside the division, they're in a deceptively close battle with Ottawa for first overall in the Conference; deceptive because while it's a 1 point difference, Ottawa has SUCKED recently, as their 5-0 shutout loss last night to Toronto proves. So what better time to give a 3/4 season report than today!

Let's see how the most recent predictions from the old website fared:

1. The Devils will be in talks to acquire or will have acquired another scoring threat.

Nope. Well, we haven't traded for one yet, and while it's not beyond Lamoriello to pull off a surprising trade before the deadline, he has less than 4 hours as of this writing in which to do so. Though as I'm writing this, we acquired Bryce Salvador for Cam Jannsen. More on this below.

2. Marty Brodeur, Starting Eastern Conference Goalie will lead the East to a 5-1 lead after 1 period. Crosby or Ovechkin will get mvp honors, but Brodeur will be stellar.

Wow was I wrong. Brodeur and Crosby didn't show up. But Ovechkin had a helluva game and should've beaten Staal for mvp honors.

3.Jamie Langenbrunner will be in the top 4 in Devils scoring, knocking Madden out. Hopefully Travis Zajac will knock Madden out of the top 5.

Nope. But this was close. Madden has 37, Langenbrunner 36, Zajac 32. More on Madden down below.

4.The Devils will be in 2nd place in the division and 4th or 5th overall in the East. The Pens will be in 1st in the East

Woohoo! Go Devo, 0-4! But I'll take being wrong with us in 1st place and the Pens in 4th.

Wait, aren't you guys supposed to be a sports blog? (Catching up with the Devils, part II)

The Good

First place says hi. The team manages to keep on winning games, even if they're not playing so well in said games. Newark is becoming a home ice advantage, even if they're rarely there in March.

Marty. In a year when the Devils, if nothing else, have less name guys than they've ever had before, Marty looks as if he's on his way to being in serious Vezina contention, if not winning it. He may or may not deserve it, but the Vezina is won essentially on name recognition. For years in the mid-late '90's when a young Brodeur was outplaying the veteran Hasek, the vet always took home the prize. Now, with Brodeur possibly being outplayed by the youngster Luongo, Brodeur will get it. And yeah, when Luongo is outplayed by Dipietro or Fleury in 6 years, Luongo will still get it.

The offensive defensemen. To be honest, I'm not sure how I'd rate the job that our defense is doing. At times it looks like the old days of Stevens, Niedermayer, and Daneyko, and at times they look like the Rangers. But the play of the offensive defensemen, specifically Martin, Oduya, Mottau, and Rachunek has been stellar. They are moving up on the rush a lot more, something that was about as well received by Devils coaches (except for Rafalski and Niedermayer) as snitching in East Baltimore until recently. But watching the team the last few weeks, it seems as though the offensive defensemen are jumping into the rush and setting up more chances. (Side note: quick, name 2 current Devil defensemen who were on the 2003 Stanley Cup team. Or not. Only Colin White remains.)

Patrik Elias. Seems like he's starting to get his mojo going in time for the playoffs. Good to see. Though he still isn't the same player that he was before the lockout.

The Bad

Brian Gionta. Where the hell has he been all year? Technically he’s 3rd on the team with 42 points. But for a guy who owns the team record with 48 goals in a season, he should be getting at least 30 goals every year. He’ll be lucky to get more than 20 this year.

Sheldon Brookbank.
Brookbank plays defense and fights. We have 7 guys who are better defenseman (8 with Salvador) and 3 better fighters (Clarkson, Asham, and Rupp.) Why does this guy get any ice time?

The Capitals game last week.
Went to the Devils/Capitals game, a 3pm Sunday afternoon game. I was still hungover from my festivities from the night before. Apparently, so were the Devils. They were outshot 28-10 in the first two periods, didn’t play offense, and didn’t play defense. In the first period alone, the Caps hit 2 posts and needed 2 amazing Brodeur saves to keep the game close. Luckily, their shipment of Pedialite arrived for the 3rd period and their game improved. But still, an awful first two periods.

The Ugly

Sheldon Brookbank. Usually the Devil fighters are good at not getting their asses kicked in fights. Not Sheldon Brookbank. He really sucks in every possible way.

Joe & Evan live from The Rock. They broadcasted live from The Rock, 10am to 12:50pm on President’s Day. So you’d think they’d interview some Devils over the course of this time right? Nope. Daneyko, Doc Emerick, and quasi-player Kevin Weekes.

Brodeur's Minutes. The last two years, Brodeur has played about 75 games/season. He was then outplayed by Ward and Emery in the second round. It was acceptable for Brodeur to play this often when Scott "BC Sucks and so do I" Clemmensen was the untested backup. Now, we have Kevin Weekes and things are supposed to be different, Weekes being one of the better backups in the league. But like Clemmensen before him, Weekes will play in maybe 6 or 7 games all year, leaving Brodeur nice and tired for the postseason. Great.

Wait, aren't you guys supposed to be a sports blog? (Catching up with the Devils, Part III)


-Zach Parise, he of the team-leading 25 goals, will end the year with 30.

-Brodeur will win the Vezina. The other nominees? I, along with the other SUS hockey experts have no idea. So let’s just call the committee lazy and say that Luongo and Nabokov will be the competition. Apologies to Ty Conklin.

-Along those lines, John Madden will win the Selke. 2 ironies here: #1: Madden will win this award not because he’s playing exceptional defense this year, (he is, but that's not the point) but because his offensive statistics are good enough to qualify him for the award of being the best defensive forward. This is a good award, but the way it is decided is retarded. Either way though, he’ll win. Oh, and irony #2: The Devils will have two award winners after only having one all-star this year.

-The Devils will finish the year at 48-26-8, 104 points, good enough for first overall in the East. While we’re here, let’s give the rest of the seeds: 2.Montreal, 3.Washington, 4.Pittsburgh, 5.Ottawa, 6.Rangers, 7.Boston, 8.Buffalo.

Final thoughts

I’m pretty sure I like this Salvador/Jannsen trade. It’s nice to have another defenseman to possibly play with Paul Martin as our 2nd defensive pairing. This gives us 7 more than competent defensemen: White, Mottau, Martin, Oduya, Salvador, Rachunek, and Greene. Sutter tends to use 7 defensemen and can continue this trend in the playoffs with Vishnevski and Brookbank (Tthank God!) to spare. It’ll suck to see Jannsen go, but it’s not like fighters get playing time in the playoffs. Plus, we still have 3-4 fighters for next year.

2. I noticed this when looking over the St. Louis roster: is Paul Kariya really playing in St. Louis? I had no freakin clue.

2. Has anyone seen the Joe Louis special on HBO? I saw a few minutes of it, pretty solid. More importantly, when he fought Max Schmeling, Hitler’s prized fighter, this might be the first time in recorded history that Blacks and Jews came together for a common cause. The second time? Obama's presidential campaign.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sure Sarah's doing Matt Damon, but what about Kimmel?

I wish I were Matt Damon

From the Kimmel show. I'd imagine that this has gotten around, but just in case it hasnt:

Hockey Deadline Speculation

The trade deadline is about 24 hours away and all remains quiet on the front. Expect it to remain that way for the most part for a few reasons.

First that there aren’t as many big name UFA’s that will be changing hands this year. Last year there were quite a few, this year it’s paltry for ones that not are free agents and don’t have a no trade or movement clause. Guys like Adam Foote and Rob Blake would normally garner a bounty, but neither seem willing to waive their clauses so they’re taken out of talks.

Secondly how close the playoffs races are. There are few teams that are actually out of it right now, meaning most teams are buyers rather than sellers. That dries up the available pool even more.

Lastly is that last year showed the big name acquisitions had little impact on the teams they were dealt to. Bill Guerin and Todd Bertuzzi, two big names had little to no impact on their teams. This will make GM’s more wary about dealing for anyone in general with a high price.

But that’s not to say there won’t be any deals, and names continue to be thrown out there. So lets take a look at what big names could be moving on by tomorrow.

Marian Hossa, Atlanta Thrashers
Contract talks seem to have completely failed meaning Atlanta is going to get what they can for him. Expect them to land a first round pick and a young player or two in return. Hossa is the biggest name and definitely an impact player so his value will be high.

Bobby Holik, Atlanta Thrashers
Holik is a UFA at the end of the year and whether or not he gets dealt will depend on how likely Wadell thinks the Thrashers will make the playoffs. He wont get them a lot, but if they think they cant go far (which I don’t think they can), they should get what they can for him.

Mats Sundin, Tornto Maple Leafs
He’s stated he wont waive his NTC, so he wont be going anywhere

Tomas Kaberle, Toronto Maple Leafs
He’s their best dman, but his NTC doesn’t kick in until next year. For his price and what he brings I think Fletcher is smart enough to keep him around.

Bryan McCabe, Toronto Maple Leafs
With multiple years on his deal remaining and a no movement clause, Id ont expect him to be going anywhere.

Brad Richards, Tampa Bay Lightning
Richards have given Jay Feaster a list of teams he would accept a trade to and that means the ball is rolling. Whether or not it will keep going is another story. The Richards contract was a mistake from the get go, another idiotic move by Feaster in giving in to an agents demands. Now the Lightning have little depth and their only chance to recover is to offload one of the big 3, Richards having the biggest salary and currently the worst play. If Feaster can get a decent deal, and Richards waives his NTC, this will happen, but it is really the latter that is the big question.

Dan Boyle, Tampa bay Lightning
Rumor is Boyle is seeking Scott Niedermayer money. If he truly thinks he will get that he vastly over rates himself. Still, with new ownership plus lagging far behind in the playoff race expect the Lightning to deal the defenseman for young players and free up salary to sign some guys in the off season.

Vaclav Prospal, Tampa Bay Lightning
Apparently far apart on contract talks, and almost out of contention, expect Feaster to get what he can for Prospal.

Jaromir Jagr, New York Rangers
Things don’t look too good for Jagr returning to new York after this year for various reasons, but his value for the playoffs is too great to get rid of. He will be with the blue shirts for the remainder of the year.

Adam Foote, Columbus Blue Jackets
As mentioned earlier he has an NTC and doesn’t seem to want to waive it. If he doesn’t the Jackets are missing out on a big return because Foote is the kind of player teams love to get at the deadline. I expect him to not waive it and stay put.

Sergei Federov, Columbus Blue Jackets
He hasn’t been the same since he left Detroit but his experience can bring a good return. No way the jackets will keep him at his current deal so I expect for him to off loaded for whatever they can get for him.

Rob Blake, LA Kings
Like Foote he seems to be intent on not waiving his NTC. He likes LA and doesn’t mind being on a rebuilding team. Also like foot that is somewhat bad as the Kings can command a lot for him. I don’t think he will waive his clause, and I expect him to resign with the Kings for a lesser price in the off season.

Ladislav Nagy, LA Kings
Nagy hasn’t done that well since the lockout and his stock continues to drop. LA will move him just to gain some assets, but don’t expect it to be much for this fading forward.

Brad Stuart, LA Kings
Stuart hasn’t done that well for the Kings, but hasn’t been bad. As defensemen are a hot commodity this time of year, I wont be surprised if he is dealt, or if the Kings keep him to sign him for another year or two.

Martin Havlat, Chicago Blackhawks
His salary and injury history make this talented player all but tradable. I don’t see anyone taking a risk on paying a guy $6mm a year for half a season

Glen Murray, Boston Bruins
Every year his name pops up. Look, he’s aging, he’s injured and his production keeps dropping. As long as he has a year remaining on his contract he’s not going anywhere because no one is dumb enough to take him (with Mike Milbury gone and Feaster having no room for him).

Mike Comrie, New York Islanders
The Isles like Comrie and he has played well there. Expect them to try and sign him long term

Ollie Jokinen, Florida Panthers
People always ignore the fact that Jokinen likes Florida and signed a long term deal and passed on free agency two years ago. He’s not moving, get over it rumor mongers

Brian Campbell, Buffalo Sabres
Negotions failed to sign the blue liner to a long term deal, and past history indicated Buffalo wont be able to sign him in the off season. Campbell will most likely be the big name defenseman moved at this deadline.

John Michael Liles, Colorado Avalanche
As long as the Avs think they can make the playoffs he will be staying put, even if it seems he is already gone after this year.

Alex Tanguay and Kristen Huselius, Calgary Flames
Honestly, do we really think Sutter isn’t going to try and win it all and keep his big guns? I didn’t think so.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Angry White Man (Weekend Edition)

So big ups to the Washington D.C. Metro Transportation for fixing the kinks on the Metro. But here's my question-did you have to single track the trains from Friendship Heights all the way to Dupont Circle? That's 6 stops! I took 3 round trips for various reasons yesterday into the thick of the single tracking, and I think 2 hours of my Saturday was spent waiting for the train. But hey, I guess I better get used to it. The metro is going to be messed up like this for 3 MORE WEEKS. Ugh.

...and he'll go to the grave as an angry old man

The guy: Depressed or just inbred?

"Uh, sweetie, can I get a minute?"
"Mmm, kinda busy right now babe."