brainofdtrain's profile

Member since: July 26, 2006
Last visit: May 29, 2014

brainofdtrain has posted 10 links and 571 comments to SportsFilter and 0 links and 1 comment to the Locker Room.

Recent Links

Packer out, Kellogg in as CBS lead announcer : Billy Packer is out after 27 years as the lead college basketball analyst for CBS, making way for Clark Kellogg. "Like Billy Packer, Al McGuire or any of the most highly regarded broadcasters, Clark is an original voice with his own style and perspective." Will Kellogg's style be an upgrade over Packer's? Is this a good move for CBS?

posted by brainofdtrain to basketball at 01:18 PM on July 14, 2008 - 3 comments

An Instant Classic: "A rivalry between the league's two most storied franchises -- with some of the game's biggest names and biggest moments -- now has its biggest rally. No team had ever overcome more than a 15-point deficit after the first quarter, and Elias Sports Bureau said it was the biggest comeback in the finals since 1971. One thing's for sure, it will forever be remembered in the annals of Celtics-Lakers lore."

posted by brainofdtrain to basketball at 12:21 AM on June 13, 2008 - 34 comments

D'Antoni accepts Knicks' offer : Mike D'Antoni is set to become coach of the New York Knicks, bringing his entertaining offensive style from the Phoenix Suns to a team coming off one of the worst seasons in its history. Can he make the Knicks contenders again?

posted by brainofdtrain to basketball at 04:48 PM on May 10, 2008 - 12 comments

Indiana set to hire Crean as hoops coach: Indiana University will hire Marquette's Tom Crean as its basketball coach and is expected to introduce him at a news conference Wednesday. The hiring comes near the end of a tumultuous six-week period in which former Hoosiers coach Kelvin Sampson resigned amid an NCAA scandal, interim coach Dan Dakich replaced him and then lost four of seven games. Is Indiana on the road to recovery?

posted by brainofdtrain to basketball at 02:09 AM on April 02, 2008 - 12 comments

Kidd to Dallas: Take Two: In a revised deal that includes the semi-retired Keith Van Horn, Jason Kidd appears to be heading to the Dallas Mavericks after all. Does Kidd give them enough to win it all?

posted by brainofdtrain to basketball at 01:45 AM on February 18, 2008 - 6 comments

Recent Comments

Royals Acquire Shields, Deal Myers to Rays


That's a fair point, and there are more than a few folks who think it was time to go for it. I'm not against them taking a shot now, the problem I have is that they gave up way too much to do it. I can understand hitting on 14 every once in a while, but hitting on 19? The gamble feels too risky because if they're wrong they've killed the immediate and long-term future. Plus, as someone pointed out, it has been the KC GM who has lectured fans for years about being patient, so given that I think that it's valid to say "so, we've waited over 5 years for this, Santana, Guthrie, and Shields? That's it?" Shields is great, and it will be fun to watch him, and I hope I'm wrong. I just think that as great as he is, he's not good enough for what was given.

To put it another way: If I have to suffer through 5-6 years of "doing it the right/only way," I expected better. I get how the money works somewhat, that KC is always going to have some disadvantages, and that therefore some present suffering for better days later is inevitable. I'm okay with that, but I want to suffer awful baseball for the sake of titles, not winning 90-95 games and watching Guthrie and Hochevar get destroyed by the Tigers, Yankees, Rangers, etc. I was already doing that in the regular season. Maybe I'm just jaded.

posted by brainofdtrain at 08:29 PM on December 11, 2012

Royals Acquire Shields, Deal Myers to Rays

I'm a KC fan, though I'm seriously considering bailing after this trade. I can't stand it. As Ying Yang rightly pointed out, even if Shields is lights out, are Santana, Guthrie, Luke "this is the year he breaks out ... no seriously this is the year" Hochevar, and Wade Davis really going to put KC over the top?

To me, playoff appearances are nice, but you don't give up all the hard work building for the future for it; you only do that for World Series wins. I feel like the Royals were running a marathon and decided to quit at the 23 mile mark. There is no objective measure I can think of that suggests this deal puts KC over the top as a championship contender. As Rany, Pos, and Prospectus all make clear I think, this was a short-sighted, and probably desperate, move. If the best KC and their fans can hope for is to watch them get killed by the Yankees, Tigers, or Rangers in the postseason then the hopelessness in KC is worse than I thought. As another great leader in KC sports history once put it, you play to win the game!

I hope I'm wrong, but my honest belief is that at best we are getting ~2 years of competent, fun baseball for another decade (at least) of poor, unwatchable baseball.

on edit: what yerfatma said

posted by brainofdtrain at 02:45 PM on December 11, 2012

South Carolina's Marcus Lattimore Suffers Knee Injury

Good news

posted by brainofdtrain at 03:04 PM on October 28, 2012

South Carolina's Marcus Lattimore Suffers Knee Injury

This injury shows why no athlete should ever be faulted for entering the pros early.

I saw someone else point out how this is also a good illustration of why some sort of living stipend is in order for players. After all the success that SC has had and will still have this year (and thus $$$ made) in large part off of his efforts, it seems a shame that compensation (in addition to his education) will likely never come his way, regardless of how tiny. Regardless, I genuinely feel for the guy, and hope he can find a way back, although I wouldn't blame him for hanging 'em up now-you want to be able to walk when you're 50.

posted by brainofdtrain at 10:30 PM on October 27, 2012

Red Sox considering a blockbuster trade

leaves the Sox fantastically agile to retool.

With what?

The free agent market is REALLY lean for picking up anyone in 2013.

Maybe they're thinking long-term. If there's nothing good out there in the market this offseason, just wait a year, focus on your farm system, and have a ton of cash in your back pocket for whenever the guys you want become available.

posted by brainofdtrain at 02:11 PM on August 25, 2012

Greg LeMond smiles

How does quitting the effort to prove his innocence makes him more lovable?

I think the judge questioning the USADA's motives publicly will at least enable all who still want to believe in Lance to do so. To me I find it a bit hard to believe that Lance is literally a genius who outsmarted multiple huge bureaucracies with huge payrolls for over a decade, and all that could be brought against him was circumstantial evidence and testimony. Even granting his wealth and celebrity, the lack of hard evidence (considering who he was up against) is disconcerting to me, and even though he really might have pulled the wool over everyone's eyes, until something concrete can be offered I can't go there.

More on point though rcade, what if the USADA was literally trying to bleed him dry financially? Lance can't win a financial arms race against USADA, and they know that.

I mean, if you're Lance and you know that continuing to fight means you keep losing money, which could effect your foundation, don't you have a responsibility to say "public perception be damned, I can't let that happen?" To me, that's a scenario that makes him even more lovable. Granted, most casual fans won't think about it that much, but for his fans, that might seem reasonable enough.

Obviously, at the end of the day this likely only confirms whatever opinion one previously held. My point with the above scenario is that, for those who trusted Lance, there are ways to perceive this as a courageous and moral act, so now Lance deserves even higher praise.

posted by brainofdtrain at 08:53 PM on August 24, 2012

Greg LeMond smiles

I might have misread some of the articles on this, but the USADA isn't necessarily the definitive word on this, correct? I guess I'm wondering if the ICU rejects the USADA's decision, can Armstrong's victories still be viewed as valid? Armstrong has said that the USADA is over-stepping their authority here, and apparently the ICU agrees, so why should Armstrong, the ICU, and anyone for that matter, accept the USADA's decision?

I have no clue if the guy did/n't dope (and to be honest I know very little about the sport); I'm just wondering if this ruling should really matter.

posted by brainofdtrain at 11:51 PM on August 23, 2012

Trying their best to win at losing

The hard thing for me is that it appears that nearly all American fan's opinions are inconsistent with respect to athletes trying to find every competitive edge to win. The badminton player's apathy/tanking was trying to create an edge for themselves later on. It was trying to work within the outer edge of what was permissible to set themselves up for success later on. Sometimes fans call that approach "brilliant" and "strategic." Other times, "shady" & "cheating."

I understand the instinct to recoil at this violation of the letter of the law, but how many of us dislike it when a baserunner steals the catcher's signs? When someone ices a kicker/free throw shooter? When a player's free throw motion is specifically designed/altered to instigate lane violations? When soccer players delay more during stoppage time? When a QB throws a bomb with the primary purpose being to get a pass-interference call? All appear to not violate the letter of the relevant rule(s), but certainly violate the spirit of the game being played. I'm sure more examples could be listed.

Hell, the NBA has embraced this mentality full stop, and to a degree at least, can you blame them? Would any Hornets fans genuinely want to give up Anthony Davis and instead have the team try their hardest to ensure a season with more wins, but still end with no playoffs and without the draft position with which to begin rebuilding? The Celtics likely went further in the playoffs by resting guys (read: not caring if they lost) and losing home-court in the 1st round. They knew they would be playing Atlanta anyway, a team they knew they could beat, did beat, and they likely went further as a result. As a C's fan, I had no problem with this (other than worrying it would come back to bite them against Atlanta); the team I root for is super old, and needed to take advantage of that to have a chance later on.

I know everyone is aware of these examples (and others), but I tried to list several to make the point that the most popular sports in this country are filled with the type of logic these badminton players used. I get that the Olympics are a different animal, but if you like American sports and aren't a moralist about them of the highest order, I am not sure how one can be super up in arms about this. So, I put this more on the organizers than the players.

posted by brainofdtrain at 03:22 AM on August 02, 2012

Steve Nash headed to Lakers after sign-and-trade with Suns

Bynum for Howard? How is that a fair trade?

I think it is more of a "this is the best we can get back" trade if you are ORL. At least, that's the school of thought from the talking heads that I follow the closest.

posted by brainofdtrain at 08:49 PM on July 06, 2012

Steve Nash headed to Lakers after sign-and-trade with Suns

I'll be impressed with Kobe if he can adjust to playing without the ball more often and I don't doubt he'll do it.

This is the more interesting part of this trade to me: Kobe recruited Nash hard. Surely he knows how Nash plays, so I'm really interested to see how they play together, because I think you raise a good point tron7.

My guess is that they will also run some PnR between the two of them, and that with Kobe's declining athleticism he might be willing to embrace more spot up opportunities. He takes a lot of jumpers now anyway.

posted by brainofdtrain at 12:37 PM on July 05, 2012

Steve Nash headed to Lakers after sign-and-trade with Suns

Age means something different when it comes to Nash. His advanced stats are still through the roof, which likely means that the reason his numbers aren't MVP worthy anymore (though they are still really good) is b/c his teams around him were terrible.

If you get two high gear years from him, I think it is worth it. LAL can't trade Kobe, so they've only got a couple years before they will have to start over anyway, so I think it was a great move. I think b/c Nash has spent the last few years in basketball purgatory, some have forgotten how good he is. The questions I have are more about how he fits on that particular team, and if they are done making moves. Of course having said all this, he will now average 8-8 for a month and then re-injure his back.

posted by brainofdtrain at 12:25 PM on July 05, 2012

Larry Brown officially hired as SMU men's basketball coach.

Well, as an admitted KU homer, I'm happy for Brown. He has been spending a lot of time around Self & KU lately, and it seems like he genuinely misses the game and isn't getting into it for bad reasons. I'm not sure if I can defend his "nomadic" nature, but to me this hire is a bit like Majerus coaching @ St. Louis; he will be able to get better recruits relative to SMU's usual standards (not "great" ones, because it is SMU after all) because he can legitimately point to having the highest levels of success in American basketball. For kids who won't get signed to play for Calipari or Self maybe the next best thing is to play for the guy who helped groom them both?

Of course Brown could be way past his prime and be a failure, but I think it is worth the risk.

On Edit: It seems possible that part of the reason for Brown's roaming ways is related to a comment he's made publicly, that KU is the best job out there and he has regretted leaving. So, when you know that the best job has already come and gone for good, maybe one gets restless. I don't know of course, just a theory. On the other hand, maybe he is just biding his time until Self retires.

posted by brainofdtrain at 10:27 PM on April 20, 2012

Kentucky Makes It Eight

As a KU fan, tonight was a reminder that losing in the final game is such a bummer regardless of whether you are the favorite or not. I know that KU barely got to the game, and that UK had better players, but no matter how many times I told myself not to have high hopes for tonight, I couldn't help but be bummed by the result. This was probably my second favorite KU team since I started watching them over 20 years ago; they just had such guts & pride in the tradition at KU, which made them so fun to watch. So, even though I knew not to hope for much I still wanted better for the juniors and seniors who refused to let the bar be lowered in Lawrence this year. The fact they worked so hard, and decided to focus so much on the less fun task of nasty defense so that they had a chance in the tourney only makes the loss to UK worse somehow. I may be just too bummed right now to think clearly, but I would rather have another VCU debacle than this, ugh.

Okay, now that I've done my lamenting, I have to give it to UK; they really were the best team this year, start to finish. Just dominate. While I doubt they could beat NBA teams (I never really buy those arguments regardless of the collegiate sport), they are probably bigger than some already, which is just crazy. Hats off to them.

posted by brainofdtrain at 02:49 AM on April 03, 2012

Steelers Release Hines Ward

Didn't Ward say that he would take a pay cut during the season? Weird that they didn't even discuss it with him.

posted by brainofdtrain at 09:07 PM on February 29, 2012

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

It's a shame, though. I hope ome of these schools make an effort to keep playing each other.

I don't think that really would sustain a rivalry long term. As a Jayhawk fan, I agree with Bill Self that even if they play it won't be the same. Being in the same conference adds dynamics that just aren't present in noncon games. When I was growing up KU had a big game or two against Arizona, who was great at the time. Haven't thought about them much in years, and im pretty sure most KU fans are the same. Same with the huge noncon game against Florida a few years back. Not to disparage Mizzouri, but usually they aren't this good, so if playing classic games against great programs doesn't sustain a rivalry, then why would a great team vs. a more often than not mediocre one be able to?*

So, though i admit the MU-KU might have a longer shelf life than most, by not sharing a conference it is hard to see a rivalry lasting, even if they play a neutral site game once a year. I hate to say, but re-alignment really does just kill rivalries.

Of course, this response follows on the heels of digesting about everything i could find after the game, so no doubt i am regurgitating here, and could be totally off base.

*Seriously not trying to kill MU, just trying to be accurate. MU is awesome this year, and i'm fine not playing them again until the pressey's & denmon are long gone.

posted by brainofdtrain at 12:08 AM on February 27, 2012