Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Wednesday 12/20 A.M. Quickie: More on AI, NFL Pro Bowlers, "Gone Bowlin'" and More!

The top story of the day remains the Iverson trade to the Nuggets. The two biggest questions:

(1) Can AI find chemistry with Carmelo (or vice versa)? I'd ask different questions: What will AI's presence do for the development of rising Nuggets SG JR Smith? And will the absence of Andre Miller have an effect?

(2) Did the Sixers get a minimum of value in return? As I wrote last night, I like Miller, but the real value is those two first-round draft picks in the first draft in years (and last draft for years) where a picking in the 20s actually will mean something.

(Last question: What does that mean for AI's All-Star status? He was leading all East guards in fan voting. Do they simply translate his vote totals to the West? How is that fair to anyone? Do they let him play for the East in one last career hurrah?)

Oh WOW: If you read ONE THING about the Iverson trade all day, make it this roundtable of brilliant bloggers from AOL's NBA Fanhouse. Here's the link.

NFL Pro Bowlers named: For some reason, this just doesn't have the oomph of the MLB or NBA All-Star teams. (Maybe because the NFL Pro Bowl isn't nearly as compelling as the midseason showcase in the other leagues.)

I always look for a few things: (1) Which team had the most players? (Chargers with 9, and the Bears led the NFC with 7) (2) Who are the first-timers? (Most notable in '07: Frank Gore, Tony Romo, Philip Rivers) And (3) which rookies, if any, made it? (Devin Hester was a lock as a return guy, even if he's not for Rookie of the Year)

NBA: Suns win 15th straight, behind Amare's sick 28 and 10 (in 28 minutes!) They play the Nuggets next, in what could/should be AI's debut. Must-see! (Meanwhile: Kobe held to 19 in loss in Chicago.)

College Hoops Parity Watch: No. 23 Syracuse loses at home to Drexel. Meanwhile, No. 3 Ohio State pulled away late to beat Iowa State in their final tune-up before the huge BCS title game Saturday in Gainesville versus Florida. I just found out that Gators stud Al Horford won't be playing (ankle), not only seriously hurting the Gators' chances, but ruining what would have been an epic matchup in the paint with Greg Oden. Horford might be the most physically dominant post player in college hoops this season. Would have been fun to see what Oden could do against him.

College Bowling: Remember when Garrett Wolfe was the li'l running back from Northern Illinois that everyone loved to love? He led the nation in rushing but collected all of 28 yards in a 37-7 thumping from TCU in the Poinsettia Bowl. Don't know about you, but I'm 1-for-1 in this blog's College Bowl Pick 'Em Challenge. Have you signed up yet? Go to the ESPN College Bowl Pick 'Em and search for the group "Daily Quickie Readers." There's still time to get in. I just wish I had made last night's game my No. 1 most confident pick.

MLB: Zitopalooza! Eh, I'm bored with this. Mets? Rangers? Mariners suddenly? (Or are they Scott Boras' signature phantom suitor?) If Zito wants to play on a contender, he should go to the Mets. If he wants to have off-field marketing opportunities, he should go to the Mets. If he just wants the most money, he should go to Texas... but caveat emptor. Boras should have his client's best interests at heart, not just the highest dollar signs. I'll bet Zito has told Boras he wants to be in NY (for the reasons above), and at this point, Boras is trying to wring as many extra dollars from the Mets as possible before signing with them.

Michelle Wie to Stanford: Needless to say, I doubt she'll be living in the dorms. Good for her for at least dipping a toe in the college experience. It's not like she'll be playing for the golf team. (And if she did, I would hope she'd try to play for the men's team, because there's little question that she'd be the best men's player in college golf, as a 17-year-old female freshman.)

Sports Business Journal named ESPN honcho George Bodenheimer as its 2006 most influential person in sports business, which is a no-brainer. However: I have a surprise contender who doubles as my Sports Person of the Year who didn't even make SBJ's Top 50. (They'll be kicking themselves when they find out who I picked. The big reveal is coming later this week!)

-- D.S.


CMFost said...

Yesterday I was trying to find the studs and Dus of the year on my blog. Today I am trying to identify who the Player and Team of the Year where.

Check out my blog and let me know your thoughts for both.

Christian Thoma said...

TCU wins, holding NIU and former Heisman hopeful Garrett Wolfe to a grand total of -20 yards rushing (although Wolfe finished with 28 yards). 1-0 on my picks so far.

Tonight's game (Control-C, Control-V):
Dec. 21 Las Vegas Bowl: BYU vs Oregon
That Oklahoma game karma is still stomping on the Ducks

The more I think about this ESPN/Arena Football deal, the more I get concerned. With ESPN having a financial stake in the success of the league, how can we guarantee they won't overpromote to the detriment of real news, or investigate it fairly (say for Steroids)? Yep, I've emailed the Ombudsman.

Looking ahead to next season, if Pro Bowl Alternate QB Brett Favre does decide to retire, I think the Packers should target Jake Plummer. Plummer might prosper in McCarthy's "So Conservative it makes Rush Limbaugh looks liberal" offensive scheme. Rodgers, due to his season-ending injury, can't be counted on as a starter right off the back. The Packers should then focus on O-Line, RB, and CB in the draft (and no, I'm not giving up on the Pack's playoff chances. I'm just always thinking ahead)

The more I think about it, the more I think there's a provision in the CBA that says a player can't be traded twice in a season, so the Nuggets couldn't trade AI after they get Carmelo back.

Texas isn't a bad choice for Zito if he wants to contend. Remember, Buck Showalter just left so Texas should easily win it all.

CMFost said...

Shanoff your love for Michelle Wie is bordering on obessive. She is not as good as everyone makes her out to be. What has she won???? I will tell you nothing. How competitive has she been in the men's events she has played in? Lately she is lucky she is not in last place. Would she do well if she could play on the Stanford Men's tema? No, not a chance. What should she be doing? Playing in women's events and trying to learn how to win. Other wise she just going to be someone attendance ploy until everyone gets sick of her being in last place in men's events.

CMFost said...

How does Ty Warren who is the best d-lineman on the Patriots this season not make the Pro Bowl.

Also how the heck does Brian Westbrook not make it? His stats this year are sick 1092 yds rushing, 7 tds, 74 catches for 664 yards and 4 tds.

Brian in Oxford said...

Wie's a pro I assume no golf team. But could it be like that Jeremy Bloom deal....she's a pro women's golfer, could she play men's golf? Whatever....

Let's see, no Westbrook. However, why would Tiki want to come out of retirement to play one last meaningless game? (As in, the Giants won't be in the playoffs, so he'll be retired for 5-6 weeks already.)

Syracuse always pads its resume the first month of the season by playing almost ALL home games, sharing the big gate in the dome with smaller schools. If they're losing those games, they won't be back in the top 25 any time soon.

Perhaps Boras could counter that the Seibu Lions are suddenly awash in cash and might counter the Mets or Rangers, instead.

I would think that AI's votes would count towards the west, now. But it wouldn't surprise me to see the votes drop a bit over the inherent confusion. Maybe it won't matter by the time the voting's done.

Dan's most influential of 2006 might be Brett Favre. Surely kept the quickie and blog going with plenty of "material" :)

If the Pro Bowl were mid-season, Tony Romo wouldn't have even been a candidate. It's not perfect, but it does seem to have the advantage of not being based on just half a season, like baseball gets. Also shows you how bad QBs in the NFC are.

If UF gets a double-beatdown from OSU, that'll give a school a serious identity complex.

Unknown said...

Horford is the best post player this year?
Based on what?

Seriously, if the NBA wants Oden #1, I would think Oden (One-handed at that) is the best post player in CBB this year.
Horford is just getting off easy.

Christian Thoma said...

Horford is the best post player this year?
Based on what?

Based on Shanoff's homerism-by-vows

Mega said...

It was difficult picking a pro-bowl QB for the NFC wasn't it? None of them really put up absolutely sick Peyton/Palmer like numbers. I think Bulger was a solid choice.

Anonymous said...

"Yep, I've emailed the Ombudsman."

Oh, thank God. He's really given us confidence by getting Irvin fired and re-hiring Whitlock. No, wait, that didn't happen.

If you think SU losing to Drexel is parity ~buzz~ wrong. This is just Boeheim's thing. We'll get it together by the end of the season, we always get better, and this is as big a rebuilding year as any program can have, losing a senior point guard like Gerry McNamara. Too early to panic, and too much Syracuse to call this parity. Of course, I'd feel better if they had won, but meh.

I think the AI trade might have made both teams worse. But since Melo can't play for 15 games, the Nuggets might have time to make this work. Maybe they can convince Stern to use the old ball AND the new ball at the same time!

For Philadelphia, it's Armageddon, it's Barkley Trade 2.0 and the Grinch who stole Christmas. First time in 10 years I'm glad to be a Knicks fan!

The Atlantic Division hit rock bottom and now they've started digging! Records will be broken! Woohoo!

BLUE said...

I don't know if Iverson will make his debut tonight. The Blizzard of 2006 may keep him from getting here, but then again I guess it would keep the Suns from getting to Denver too.

Christian Thoma said...

Oh, thank God. He's really given us confidence by getting Irvin fired and re-hiring Whitlock. No, wait, that didn't happen.

I just find it interesting. He has no real power in the organization; it's not akin to a board of directors. I'm curious as to whether his take is the same as mine.

Unknown said...

I'd like to thank me for telling everyone that Iverson would go to Denver for Joe Smith in the comments section of the Quickie from exactly a week ago. You are all welcome.

As one of the few NBA fans left I think that Iverson and 'Melo will find the chemistry they need to move this team to the playoffs with their very capable playoff "front 7" (AI, JR, Melo, Nene, Camby, Boyk, Najera)

That being said, the Sixers got back a very good deal. Inside information said that they wanted a good player (Andre Miller), an expiring contract (Joe Smith), and a 1st rounder (they ended up with 2). On the other hand, its never worth it to trade AI much like its never worth it to trade Manny. There's a talent gap between guys like that and other people that is close to impossible to bridge.

As for AI making the All-Star team, that is what I've been asking for about 5 days in the comments section. Here's my summary of the situation right now. It should be noted that Allen Iverson leads all EASTERN CONFERENCE guards in votes, but would be third in the WESTERN CONFERENCE behind Kobe and T-MAC. Esspecially with T-MAC's back spasms, the question should arrise... Does AI keep his votes from the east voting? Right now, due to T-Mac's injury, Iverson would start for the West due to his number. But would they say that it doesn't count because those votes were accumulated against a different set of guys?

The ESPN article points out...
"Since the NBA-ABA merger in 1976, only one player -- Carter, in 2005 -- was traded before the All-Star Game and still was voted as a starter. "That trade was from Toronto to New Jersey though. He didn't switch conferences.

At this point my guess is David Stern will make some ruling on it.

As for the Pro Bowl I can't believe I'm saying this but I only have one complaint. His name is Sean Taylor. He is the best Safety there is and he's not on that roster. He may not be well-liked but that shouldn't detract from his recognition (eventhough it clearly did for TO).
Side Note: The Browns, The Titans, and The Lions have 0 pro bowlers.

Dan, I can't believe you missed Appalachian State beating Virginia in the (who knew there was a) San Juan Classic in your College Basketball Parity Watch.

I also am very dissapointed at the lack of Horford vs. Oden matchup. Although I would argue that Oden is the most physically dominant player in college hoops.

Dan, I hate to break it to you but you did pick the Horned Frogs as your best confidence pick in the Bowl Challenge. As did I, CMFOST, MA4TT, and 28 other people in the group.

Christian Thoma said...

Oh good, I did the confidence picks correctly. I don't mind only having 11 points at this juncture.

john (east lansing, mi) said...

a) of course you wish you had picked the Poinsettia as your most confident bowl, since now it's pretty much guaranteed. Or were you really sure of the outcome to begin with? Why didn't you put it as your most confident?

2) why didn't anybody tell us about this Most Confident thing to begin with? I didn't notice those stupid little numbers, and now I have one point instead of the 27 I should have put on that game.

also) every Big East bowl game except for Rutgers is in my Bottom Ten in confidence. Nobody has any idea what this conference can do after the inconsistent season they played. Purdue vs. Maryland? How the fuck should I know?

john (east lansing, mi) said...

Haha - Michigan vs. Louisville is the first SportsNation poll I've seen where the state-by-state bias only shows up in terms of different shades of color. There have probably been others; I've missed most of this whole CFB Playoff Poll Series.

CMFost said...

The confidence thing is easy, if your not sure rank it low and you do not risk a lot of points, if you are sure then rank it high. It is not that hard of a concept.

CMFost said...

Wow I can not believe that sheildz who seems somewhat knowledgable about sports got yesterdays game wrong.

Unknown said...

That's easy for you to say. YOU got the blowout as your most confident pick and have the highest posible score in the world.

Oh, that's right. So do I. High Five?

Sheldiz said...

chrth - homerism-by-vows -- i like that term!

my question for the masses, re: homerism-by-vows, is this -- do any of your significant others now root for your college or pro team, even though they didn't go there or grow up in your town?

i can't draw on my own experience in this realm, b/c my boyfriend doesn't watch sports. so i'm just wondering... i'm operating on the assumption its not such a big deal for girls to make the switch, its more of a guy thing. no judgment on that, just wondering.

Christian Thoma said...

The confidence thing is easy, if your not sure rank it low and you do not risk a lot of points, if you are sure then rank it high. It is not that hard of a concept.

What I couldn't figure out was if 1 represented the game I was most confident in, or the one I was least confident in. I went with least because that made point-multiplication easier to calculate, but the site could've done a better job explaining it (a simple '32 equals most confident' comment would've sufficed).

Of course, I figure getting every pick right eliminates the benefits of confidence picking.

Sheldiz said...

"Wow I can not believe that sheldiz who seems somewhat knowledgable about sports got yesterdays game wrong."

I am somewhat knowledgable about sports, however i am ZERO-what knowledgable about college football. and i like upsets.

Christian Thoma said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sheldiz said...

and i'm not going to lie... i had the same confusion w/ the confidence pick. so i ignored the little numbers too.

Brien said...

Well, we NIU alums are walking around with our respective tails between our legs this morning.

Wow ... what a pasting by a TCU team I hadn't seen before. I wondered if the gaudy rushing defense numbers had anything to do with playing in the pass-wacky WAC ... no, TCU is *that* good.

Kudos to TCU on a great, great game all around. We got 60 yards total offense (62 on one play ... which means we really got -2 yards from every other play we ran all night).

What bugs me most is that NIU had some success against Central Michigan by going to a no-huddle offense en route to beating the eventual MAC champs. Why not do that against a team you've never played before? What harm could there be?

John Bond, NIU's offensive coordinator, has got to go ... no imagination, no game plan, no reasonable chance for success.


CMFost said...

It is not too late you can still update your confidence numbers

Christian Thoma said...

do any of your significant others now root for your college or pro team, even though they didn't go there or grow up in your town?

Nope. Although we did agree on which school to raise our child a fan of (Wake Forest, since it's local)

For professional sports, we're going to encourage local teams (Bobcats, Panthers -- although I fear my Packers love may override this for him, Hurricanes). For baseball the kid will be a Greensboro Grasshoppers fan, so we're not sure what's going to happen for professional baseball (definitely NOT Atlanta). I'm a Mets fan and the wife is a Red Sox fan, I think as long as he's not a Yankees fan we'll be ok.

Unknown said...

I had to go to the FAQ section to figure out if 32 or 1 was most confident. But I got it right.

I think TCU is in the Mountain West Conference (MWC) not the Western Athletic Conference (WAC).

CMFost said...

do any of your significant others now root for your college or pro team, even though they didn't go there or grow up in your town?

My wife did not even like sports before we got married I have now turned her into a Bruins/Patriots/Red Sox fan.

Anonymous said...

"It was difficult picking a pro-bowl QB for the NFC wasn't it? None of them really put up absolutely sick Peyton/Palmer like numbers."

Dan Mega,
Ever heard of Drew Brees!?! Take at glance at his numbers.

john (east lansing, mi) said...

cmfost -

I wasn't having trouble understanding the system, I just didn't realize there were confidence points attached to every game. Thus, 1 point for a win I was pretty sure of.

Corrected for the rest of the bowls, obviously.

marcomarco said...

i can't draw on my own experience in this realm, b/c my boyfriend doesn't watch sports.

Tragic. Absolutely tragic.

Anonymous said...

My wife still hates the Bills and cheers for those two New Jersey Professional Football teams. Needless to say, December 2006 has been immensely enjoyable for me.

Anonymous said...

Ever heard of Drew Brees!?! Take at glance at his numbers.

The numbers Brees is putting up just goes to show how weak the NFC is. This is same Brees that led the currently first place Chargers to a 9-7 record with essentially the same team.

chipp said...

What does it say about SD and LD's record that come playoff time, they might only have played 2 playoff teams (L to BAL, and a win v SF or win/loss v SEA)? CIN and DEN could also wind up on there, but has anyone had an easier schedule this year?

Perks said...

AI's on my fantasy basketball team.

Anyone have a proposed start date for him?

Big D said...

For what it's worth... I just discovered the "confidence picks" today as well. Oops. Looks like "The Best Seat in the House" won't necessarily have the best score in the house.

Re: Pro Bowl Voting
How has no one mentioned Shawne Merriman's inclusion on the AFC squad? You remember Shawne Merriman, right? Immensely talented, kinda over aggressive on the field, always in uber-celebratory mood... shockingly failed a steroid test and missed 4 games this year?

How is this guy even eligible for the Pro Bowl? Shouldn't he have to forfeit the right to earn any type of individual honor for the year when he is caught using a banned substance?

And I'm talking, like every individual award, from Player of the Week up to League MVP.

The only thing that will get into these players' heads is a hit to the wallet, and losing out on individual honors usually equates to losing out on mega-bonus money in their contracts.

That's my proposal - you get caught cheating, you lose your right to be honored for the rest of the year, and stripped of any previous honors from that season...


Anonymous said...

I went to the University at Buffalo but never followed college football. My wife went to Tennessee and only followed college football. I now root for the Vols while she is a Bills fan. The only thing is if Tennessee were to ever play UB, I would root for UB to win. I also follow both UB and UT basketball. I'm not really sure if this is right, but its what I do.

Jared said...

No love for your boy John Scheyer, starting the Duke/Kent St. game with 10 points in the first 3-4 minutes?

CMFost said...

Hey Dave are you forgetting the #2 defense in the league based on points allowed? The New England Patriots

Jon said...

Way to disrespect the Patriots should know better.

Unknown said...

Tom Brady will come to your house and eat your papaya now.

Unknown said...

BTW, Drew Brees was very good last year. He wasn't the reason the team finished 9-7. That was on Schottenheimer. Didn't he cost SD the Pittsburgh game last season by refusing to throw to Gates inside the 5 yard line? My memory is fuzzy though.
Nevertheless, the Magnificent Mole produced last year as well.

Christian Thoma said...

Boston fans are so self-absorbed that they have no idea what is actually being discussed

Quoted for truth.

Of course, now they'll play the 'disrespect card'

Big D said...

"Of course, now they'll play the 'disrespect card'"

Because, as we all know, New England Patriots' players are religious followers of this blog and its many commenters...

Speaking of which, to quote the great and insightful Stewin Griffin in regards to my previous comment: "Riiiiight... so, we're all just gonna look the other way on this one, eh?"

CMFost said...

Really the Patriots are actually pretty close to what they have been on defense the years they won the Super Bowl

Points Per Game Allowed (Which to me is the most important defensive stat)
2001 - 17 PPGA - 6th in NFL - Won Super Bowl
2002 - 21.1 - 17th in NFL - Did not make Playoffs
2003 - 14.9 - 1st in the NFL - Won Super Bowl
2004 - 16.3 - 2nd in the NFL - Won Super Bowl
2005 - 21.1 - 17th in the NFL - Lost in 2nd round of PLayoffs
2006 - 13.8 - 2nd in the NFL - TBD

CMFost said...

and other then 04 they are not that bad in comparison when it comes to points scored

06 - 22.9 PPG
04 - 27.3
03 - 21.8
01 - 23.8

Aitch said...

I'm a Boston sports fan , and I'm TOTALLY self absorbed. lol

I think the Pats right now would have a very hard time stopping LT. Hell I'm worried about Fred Taylor and Mo Jones-Drew this weekend!

Christian Thoma said...

Because, as we all know, New England Patriots' players are religious followers of this blog and its many commenters...

Actually, I was referring to the FANS. Read the post again.

Wow, the reading comprehension on this blog today is not scoring very high, is it?

CMFost said...

If Wilfork is healthy it will be no problem stopping Jones-Drew and Taylor. If Wilfork is out they will have solid games and the patriots probably lose.

Christian Thoma said...

As for the Pats, I'm sure they have as good a chance as anybody in the AFC of winning it all. To be honest, I'm more concerned about the offense rather than the defense.

One other thing about that Points Allowed stat: Don't forget the Pats played that stellar division known as the NFC Norris. Although the Lions put 21 points on them. What's up with that?

CMFost said...

I would go with Runner B based on TD's and the fact his team would be done with out him.

Big D said...

@ richard: I believe it was Luis Castillo that failed the steroids test at the combine, not Merriman. Could be wrong - I'll check later.

@ chrth: "Actually, I was referring to the FANS. Read the post again.
Wow, the reading comprehension on this blog today is not scoring very high, is it?"

Technically, you never defined to whom you were referring... The original post that you "quoted for truth" was a retort to someone talking about the Patriots as a team.

Listen to me, getting all uppity. I'm quoting Stewie Griffin for Christ's sake... I'm not qualified to give out English lessons.

As you were.

Anonymous said...

Sorry big d, his quote was about the fans, not the players.

Anyway, the real contenders in my mind are the Patriots and Dallas. Maybe I picked up Romo fever from my co-worker, but they are strong on both sides of the ball. I can't believe in the Chargers or Saints, they're in the next tier (maybe next year). Indy, Baltimore and Chicago are only half a team each. I can't really dignify any other team here.

NE ftw.