5 Things You Need to Know To #Win Thursday

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo and the National Fantasy Football Convention play to depose NFL commisioner Roger Goodell as part of their $1 million lawsuit against the league for last year’s failed event.

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo and his National Fantasy Football Convention have no plans to back down on their lawsuit against the NFL for tortious interference in the canceling of last year’s event.

Romo and his partners are asking for more than $1 million from the league.

Not only are the two sides heading to court in Dallas on Monday for a hearing on a summary judgment on the NFL’s motion to dismiss the suit, but the lawyers for the NFFC have filed paperwork to depose league commissioner Roger Goodell.

The NFL has filed a motion to block Goodell’s deposition.


MLB-Lineups-Divisions

The NHL had a novel idea this season: It broke up its All-Star Game into semifinals, with the individual stars from each division playing short exhibitions against each other in a tournament format. They played a 20-minute semifinal — giving fans an actual All-Star bracket — and then a championship between the winners. A clever idea, to be sure, and one that not only made the All-Star format itself more exciting, but also allowed more star players to be seen by their fans. (It also ended up leading to the John Scott story.)

I’m not sure baseball should do this — it already has the best All-Star Game and doesn’t need to radically reinvent it, though getting rid of the “Now It Counts” business is long overdue — but it is an enticing thought experiment. Imagine if the All-Stars from each division played, say, a series of three-inning games in a double-elimination format that ended up determining the best division in baseball over a three-day stretch. It’s probably too much, but it’s fun to think about: Now that the divisions are more geographically aligned, there’s as much division loyalty, pride and solidarity as there is with leagues, maybe more.

It’ll never happen — and again, it probably shouldn’t happen — but I’m gonna take part in the thought experiment anyway. Let’s come up with a preseason All-Star team for each of the six divisions and imagine who would win such a tournament. Rather than go through matchup-by-matchup, we’ll just rank them.

Here’s how the teams might look. I’ll be cheating a little bit by just allowing for three outfield spots rather than LF/CF/RF, but hey: This is an All-Star Game.

Read: If each MLB division had an All-Star lineup, what would it look like?


LarryBird

For several days in the summer of 2014, I debated a question whose answer seems obvious. Was Larry Bird a pure shooter? I kept this debate internal — I drafted emails for friends and basketball writers asking for their opinions, but never sent them, for fear of their reaction and eventual abandonment. Instead, I went back and forth with the question. Calling someone a pure shooter can be used as an insult, if pure becomes synonymous with “only” or is the first half of a compound sentence that begins “He’s a pure shooter,” and ends “but he can’t play any defense or put the ball on the floor.”

Bird belongs in the discussion for the greatest shooter of all time, but simply calling him a pure shooter might erase the way he controlled the game with his passing, rebounding, tenacity, team defense and floor game. Is calling Larry Bird a pure shooter the ultimate compliment or an underestimation? Praise or pejorative? But then if Bird isn’t a pure shooter, who the hell is?

Regardless of definitions and labels, Bird’s greatness as a shooter can get lost when discussing his career. His all-around brilliance separated him from everyone else. He could dominate without taking a shot, but it was still that shot that made everything else possible.

Read: How the jumper turned Bird into Larry Legend.


Andy Pettitte had six heavy-use postseasons in his career. (via Chris Ptacek)

At the end of my last article at THT, “The In-Season Aging Curve,” I indulged in some speculation about whether older pitchers’ skills eroded faster during the playing season than in the offseason. The data I used gave me no grounds for a conclusion either way. Were the erosion to happen faster in-season, though, it raised the unfortunate possibility that pitchers who had longer seasons—meaning those who pitched deep into the postseason—would be worn down by the grind and pitch worse the next season, and possibly beyond.

I teased that I might have more to say on the matter in months to come. Teasing isn’t really nice, so I got to work on the matter right away.

I wound up both narrowing and expanding the question I posed. I looked at just the following year after a heavy postseason workload, and I did not limit myself to older pitchers. This was probably a wise shift, since two of the biggest controversies surrounding pitcher workloads and the postseason in recent years have involved younger hurlers.

Read: Pitchers and the Seven-Month Season – The Hardball Times


New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul sued ESPN and NFL reporter Adam Schefter on Wednesday for tweeting his medical records over the summer.

The lawsuit, filed in Miami-Dade County in Florida, alleges that Pierre-Paul’s privacy was violated — as was the state’s medical records statute — by the report. The lawsuit claims Schefter “improperly obtained Plaintiff’s medical records from a hospital” and then tweeted them out, writing that “ESPN obtained medical charts that show that Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul had right index finger amputated today.”

Paul injured his right hand in a fireworks accident July 4. Schefter posted a photo of Pierre-Paul’s medical chart July 8

Read: Jason Pierre-Paul of New York Giants sues ESPN, Adam Schefter for posting medical records

May the DiRT Be With You…and also with you

mayweather pacquiao punchout!!

Super-Nintendo Punchout summarizes the fight –  from sports grid.

Ah the Romans – it was in full display – the Bread and the Circuses – except it seemed while we got the circus – they forgot our bread.  THE MOST SPECTACULAR FIGHT OF OUR TIME – YOU CANT MISS THIS ONE – TWELVE UNFORGETTABLE ROUNDS FOR ONLY $99.

That is the beautiful thing about pay-per-view sporting events – there are no sell outs, no waiting in line, no standing-room only, no one getting turned away at the gate by small giants and fire marshals for too much booze on your breath – none of that!  As long as you want it – you’ve got a better seat than any celebrity –‘Murica!

But the fight – ughh – it was just like I wrote back in December, #CalledIt.  Want to know what was a better fight than #MayPac?  Jamie Foxx staying in tune.  Clint Eastwood versus a chair.  Bob Barker versus Happy Gilmore.  Jay Z versus Beyonce’s Sister.  Kevin James versus skinny jeans, Deebo versus Craig – we get it!  The build up was Wrestlemania without the drama, The Royals have thrown more punches this year – it made you long for the days you dropped that kind of scratch on a Mike Tyson fight that was over in less than 90 seconds.  Mayweather handed out more hugs to Manny than his own kids.

If this was what people thought was the Fight of the Century – did they mean this actual century or the last 100 years – then Boxing is dead – maybe it survives as some bare-knuckled-quasi blood-sport on late night TV – but there will never be anything great about it ever again.  I preferred to watch a rerun of Hagler v Hearns – it’s what we expected Saturday – or relive the salad days of any of Muhammad Ali’s fights.  With Ali, we were lucky and privileged to live in the same century with him.  He was a true aristocrat of the spirit, I love the man.  He spoke to the best and bravest in us and his fights are priceless.  Floyd will never understand, and it seems he doesn’t care too – he’s just fine being the captain on the Titanic.


NBA Fevah!  Chris Paul was doing his best Steph Curry impression making an incredible shot, that I still don’t know how it went in, to beat the Spurs, 111-109.  This undercard was better than Saturday’s main event.  The Clippers needed all of the 8 for 14 beyond the arc points in the second half, before Paul’s lucky nail in the champ’s coffin.  Does this propel the Clippers to bigger things?  Is this the end of the Spurs as we knew them?  What I do know is; I could watch these two play the rest of the year and it would still live up to expectations.  The question though, is this:  will there be any other series as good as this one for the rest of the playoffs?


There he is, the favorite, American Pharoah.  The first horse to start in position 17 or farther and win the (141st) Kentucky Derby.  I had told you to leave him off because of that (and because they clearly don’t know how to spell Pharaoh) – what is the meaning of statistics if you cant remove the outliers.  Well the outliers win sometimes and sometimes they rough you up pretty good.  The break the horse made from the 18th position to be near the front of the pack and not get boxed in was remarkable.  He was given a clear shot – as was I, or so I thought for most of the race.  It was another lesson I got sloppy with from the harsh school of gambling, that dealt me another quick beating for leaving off the favorite – see I had Dortmund and Firing Line in an Exacta boxBlind spots are fatal – they’ll punish you every time.  So the questions will begin again about the potential of American Pharoah(sic) being the next triple-crown winner – and the answer is no, but I will not leave him off again, just to be safe.


The Houston Firs-tros have won 10 straight and own the American League’s best record at 18-7.  As the Astros celebrate their 50th year, you have to wonder when do they come back to Earth?  In the AL West they may never – the Angels have serious problems, the Rangers are terrible and The A’s and Mariners do not play consistently enough to challenge, so…It’s a long season and Houston is a young team that will have to prove it in the dog-days – but for now, how about dem Astros!

In other weird baseball news – the Rockies still can’t play in SoCal, and the Yankees swept the Red Sox for the first time since 2006.  David Ortiz failed to deliver a bases-loaded, down-by-three, in the bottom of the ninth – either further proving his PED use, or Adam Warren is that good – has not allowed a run in 10 appearances.

Matt Harvey is 5-0 for the 1st place Mets since Tommy John Surgery and it must be an “odd” year, because the Cardinals have the best record in baseball – World Series appearances in 2011 and 2013.


May the 4th be with you!

In honor of Saga and today being May 4th – #StarWarsDay – here is some entertainment:


It’s still fresh!