Early Spring Doldrums

Now that the Olympics are over, I’m sort of in a funk.  Usually this period lasts from the Super Bowl until Opening Day of Baseball season so this year is a little more kind.  But not by much.

I know there’s still hockey, but even that doesn’t do it.  The Blues played last night and don’t play again until Thursday.  What do I do with my time between now and then?  College basketball?  No.  NBA?  Absolutely not.  I’d rather stick forks in my eyes before I watch basketball.  I’ve tried to get into it and I just can’t.  I gave up trying last year.

If I didn’t have Fox Soccer Channel, I’d probably go insane.

So how am I going to fill the time between now and the glorious beginning of baseball season?  I don’t know, either, but I’m going to make something up to finish out this post.

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Friday 5 – Reasons to Watch the Winter Olympics

Okay, I’m going to be honest, this isn’t exactly the top five reasons to watch the Winter Olympics. It’s more so of a list for the top five things to look at while watching the Winter Olympics. In short this is a cop-out Friday 5, where I’m listing the five best looking female athletes that will be competing in the Winter Olympics this year.

The Honorable Mention for this one goes to Hilary Knight of the United States Women’s Hockey Team. Here’s a picture of her, and the top five after the jump:

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The Unspoken Rules of Hockey

This time of the year is like a dead period for me.  College football is over, the NFL playoffs are in full swing but the Rams suck and Weller has those covered, I don’t like basketball and I only get to see one or two hockey games a week.  (I hate you Mediacom.  I hate you so much.)  That should semi explain my absence in the past week, plus I’m leaving for Vancouver on Tuesday morning and I’ve been filling out various paperwork all week.  Then this hockey fight between the New York’s Marian Gaborik and Philadelphia’s Daniel Carcillo caught my eye:

For those of you who don’t watch much hockey, Gaborik has 61 points on the year while Carcillo has 11.  Gaborik has 23 penalty minutes. Carcillo has 130.  Needless to say, it was a mismatch.

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Marty Brodeur, the Best Ever

Martin Brodeur

On Monday night New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur blanked the Pittsburgh Penguins to record the 104th shutout of his career.  That surpassed the great Terry Sawchuck for the most ever.  Just two games after setting the mark for the most appearances by a netminder, he shut down the vaunted attack of the reigning champions to top the 40-year-old shutout mark.

The 37-year-old Brodeur has spent his entire 17 year career with the Devils that has included three Stanley Cup victories, 9 All-Star Games, four Vezina Trophies, the Calder Trophy, and the first Canadian Olympic Gold Medal in 50 years.

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Friday 5 – Shockingly Dumb Plays

Last Sunday I was watching The Cleveland Show with my fiancee.  While Cleveland Jr. was making a stupid comment about something I made an offhand remark about how I imagined Leon Lett being a whole lot like the young, animated character.  Think about it for a second, you’ll laugh.

Anyway, she didn’t know who Leon Lett was so I had to use the magic YouTube to show her.  She laughed at him.  That’s where the inspiration for this Friday 5 came from.

I didn’t take game importance into account here, so if you make a stupid mistake in a World Series game, it was weighed just as much as a regular season game between two sub-500 teams.  Game circumstance was a factor, so if the screw-up caused your team to lose it gets a little more credit.  The final criteria was that it had to be an actual play so Marko Jaric and his backward jersey don’t count.  Still funny, though.  Let’s get to it.

5. Dan Orlovsky – I said last year that this play should be shown every time the Detroit Lions are mentioned until they win a Super Bowl.  You can make fun of Donovan McNabb for not knowing the overtime rules all you want…at least he’s never done this.

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WaB’s Annual Hockey Post

I think Weller had a post in the works for everyone, but as it turns out, someone broke into his car and then he lost power.  Priorities, I guess.  Anyway, since my St. Louis Blues dominated squeaked out a 1-0 win over the hated Detroit Red Wings tonight, I’m in a hockey mood.

One horrible thing about being a hockey fan is that it’s never on TV.  Ever.  Even Blues games, which are local here, get blacked out due to some stupid squabble between Mediacom and Fox Sports.  I’ve seen maybe six games this year.  (Side note to Gary Bettman – Hard to get the sport back to prominence when no one can see it!)  Horrible TV contract aside, I actually got to watch the Blues play the Islanders a few weeks ago.  I was treated to this gem from David Perron:

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Saturday Happenings

This post is going to touch on a couple things that happened yesterday in the sports world that doesn’t worthy of their their own full post.  We’ll start in college football.

Normally I wouldn’t pay much attention to the Harvard-Yale game, but yesterday was an exception.  Yale had a 10-7 lead with 2:25 left and was facing a 4th and 22 from their own 26 yard line.  That’s when first year head coach Tony Williams made the worst call in the history of organized football.  Yes, worse than Bill Belichick’s decision to lose last week’s game against Colts.  Coach Williams decided to run a fake punt.  Predictably, they did not get the required 22 yards.  Three plays later, Harvard found the end zone for the game winning score.

Williams would take the blame for the horrible idea later saying:

The whole idea was to keep our foot on the pedal, and not play scared. If anyone is looking for somebody to blame, blame this guy right here.

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Friday 5 – Saturday Edition!

Yesterday was Weller’s turn to do the Friday 5, but he was out-of-town and I completely dropped the ball.  So instead, you’ll be getting the first ever special edition.  Why is it so special?  Well, because it makes me look like I didn’t forget yesterday.

So today I’m going to count down my favorite sports.  Weller did something similar a while back and it’s easy enough to do.  Let’s get started.

5. Aussie Rules Football

This is kind of the odd sport in my countdown; similar to Weller’s rugby inclusion.  This game is rarely on TV, but if you make an effort, you can find it on the internet.  ESPN360 carried the Grand Final between Geelong and St. Kilda last night.  When I was in Australia in 2006, I had a chance to see St. Kilda play Carlton.  I was hooked.  It’s such an intense game, it’s like rugby, soccer, and American football combined.  I decided to be a St. Kilda fan and bought the scarves and wore our red and black.  A nice fan noticed my lack of accent and explained the rules to me.

The game itself doesn’t stop.  Fight on the far side of the field: “Ah, no, mate, they’ll just get the tribunal at midweek and be banned for a few games.  No need to stop the match!”  A guy breaks his leg going for a mark? “Wait until the play moves on, mate.  Get the stretcher.  Carry him off the field.”  Imagine if American football had no stoppages, no commercials, just awesomeness?  It would  be much cooler.

The rules are fairly simple.  Catch a kicked ball and you get a mark, or free kick.  Kick it through the center uprights and you get six points.  Kick it through the side uprights and you get one point.  No pass interference, that’s for wusses.  Tackle everything.  No pads.

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Friday 5 – Cheap Shots

Since we’re heading into a three day holiday weekend, we here at WaB have decided to debut a new weekly feature.   Every Friday we’re going to roll out a Top 5 list about whatever we feel like listing.  This could be the Top 5 baseball movies of all time, the Top 5 Running Backs of the the AFL, or the Top 5 worst looking sports girlfriends.  Today, in light of the LeGarrette Blount fiasco after last night’s Boise State-Oregon game, I’m going to give a list of the Top 5 Cheap Shots of all time.  (With videos!)

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NHL Draft Review

John Tavares puts on an Isles jersey for the first time.  Sorry, kid.

John Tavares puts on an Isles jersey for the first time. Sorry, kid.

Last night the NHL hosted the first round of their annual entry draft.  It was broadcast on Versus, so chances are good that you didn’t know it was going on (unless you frequent WaB and for that, we thank you).  As I outlined here, there was potential for a pretty wild day with trades and picks being sent all over the place.  There was also potential for nothing to happen and for everything to go according to plan.  Unfortunately, teams went with the latter option.

The biggest news of the day was Anaheim’s trade of Chris Pronger to Philadelphia for Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa and two first round draft picks.  Pronger will be an unrestricted free agent next year, so this is entirely too much.  That being said, I’m happy to see him exit the Western Conference.

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