Monday, June 04, 2007

Monday 06/04 A.M. Quickie:
Billy Donovan Returning to Florida

Billy Donovan spurns Magic and returns to Florida: I am surprised, but not shocked.

I am only surprised because you rarely see a coaching move of this magnitude (national champ college coach jumps to the NBA) get reversed the day AFTER the deal is signed. If Billy was going to turn down the job, I figured it would have happened before the contract was signed, press conferences held, etc.

But that's not how it happened.

To the Magic's credit, it sounds like they're going to let Billy go. What would be the point in making someone stay who didn't want to be there? Because his deal was signed, they have every right to financial penalties. Steep ones, frankly. They have been jilted like Granny Weatherall. (Shout out: Katherine Anne Porter and my 10th grade English teacher, brutally demanding to the point where I remember the "Jilting" story enough to cite it in a sports blog post nearly 20 years later. Who's with me? Anyone? No one?)

And to the Gators' credit, they're going to get their two-time-reigning national-champ coach back. Players will be happy. Boosters will be happy. Fans will be happy. Recruits will be happy. (Future recruits will have to decide whether they think this means Billy is REALLY committed to staying or whether rival coaches' claims that the Magic gig showcased Billy's wandering eye.)

Here's the thing about that: Billy has now turned down (a) Kentucky and (b) the closest thing to his NBA "dream job." What other jobs can possibly come up in the future that would sway him?

Especially when those jobs would have to compete with "legacy." Perhaps he read the many arguments last Friday (including mine) that reminded him that he has the rare chance to join the Mount Rushmore of college basketball: John Wooden, Dean Smith, Bobby Knight, Coach K. Talk about a "challenge": That's something you just can't walk away from easily. And, apparently, Billy couldn't.

Besides the Magic being humiliated, the news has two downsides worth noting:

(1) Billy comes across like a huge flake, even if it can be spun as "his heart was in college hoops," which is wonderful, but still. When you change your mind AFTER you sign the $27.5 million contract and hold all the press conferences, that's not just a simple mulligan to forget about. Unless he stays at Florida for the rest of his coaching career, we'll look back on this as the "his heart wasn't REALLY in it from 2008 on" moment.

(2) Presumptive successor Anthony Grant would have been an amazing coach at Florida. I'm actually a little bummed to not get a chance to see what he could have done with the program. I think that eventually he could have been equally successful as Donovan. (Yes, I'm talking multiple national titles.) I'm sure Grant will get a high-profile major-conference gig in the next two seasons, but none would be the same as coaching at Florida, where he has such a great history.

Finally: Biggest coaching flip-flop ever? Since you know I love a good superlative, I would say that this is the biggest coaching-move flip-flop in basketball history (college or NBA).

I can't quite say it's the biggest coaching flip-flop of ANY sport, because nearly a decade later, Bill Belichick's decision to go from the Jets to the Patriots (after just one day) turned out to be staggeringly monumental for NFL history. THAT is the biggest coaching flip-flop ever, though at the time, no one would have guessed it. (Note: Billy D. created his dynasty BEFORE his flip-flop; Bill B. had has AFTER his flip-flop.)


What next for the Magic? Stan Van Gundy, apparently. Doesn't have quite the same cachet as Billy D, but at this point, the Magic are probably right to stick with a coach who is sure he wants to be in the NBA. And nothing says "wants to be in the NBA" like picking from the NBA Coaching Recycling Bin.

Piniella suspended indefinitely: MLB takes a "get-tough" lesson from the NFL and NBA – and does the right thing. We all find Piniella entertaining. Some find him insufferable. But his "I'm going to go freaking nutjob insane on you" routine is so tired, he needed the same kind of time-out you'd give an infant. (Update: The Chicago Trib says he'll get 5 games.)

Yankees-Red Sox, Cont'd: New York wins the series rubber match at Fenway with an A-Rod home run off Jon Papelbon in the 9th to break a 5-5 tie. Thus ends for A-Rod one of the wildest weeks any MLB player has ever had.

MLB Stud: AL Central Awesomeness: The Tigers got a split with the division-leading Indians behind the still-unbeaten Jeremy Bonderman (5-0). Remember when the AL East was supposed to be dominant? This is why MLB is smart to not listen to knee-jerk instant-historians who call for division realignment after any single given year (cough).

MLB Dud: Ron Zook. Adding insult to injury these days at Wrigley, the Illinois football coach completely butchered "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" on Saturday. (via Sports by Brooks)

Clemens Watch: Season debut expected on Saturday vs. Pirates. Strikes me as a much more favorable matchup than the White Sox tonight.

NBA Weekend: Cavs rule! As you'll see below, I see the Cavs' Eastern title as an exception to the "Ring or Bust" philosophy I normally apply to playoff success. For the same reason the Mavs' season was a complete waste with anything but a title (let alone a first-round exit), the Cavs' season is a success for exceeding expectations and breaking through to the Finals for the first time in the LeBron Era. Or any era.

NBA Stats: If you care about "plus-minus" (and you should), you should read Fanhouse's Tom Ziller on the New York Times' disastrous attempt to explain it provocatively. What a brick.

NHL: Chris Pronger out for Game 4 after Game 3 forearm. In any other sport, would a player previously suspended for an illegal and vicious hit IN THE PREVIOUS SERIES be punished as if this was a first-time offense? Where's the sense of punishment scaled for a "repeat offender?" I don't care that it's the Stanley Cup. What's the incentive for goons to lay off the (particularly) dangerous hits if they know they'll be treated, each and every time, like one-time things? (You NHL experts can school me on this.)

NASCAR: I don't know any sport that is as obliterated by bad weather as NASCAR. (Even golf.) What an Achilles' heel of the sport.

Women's College World Series (Softball): Sad to see the end of a great season by Northwestern. Tennessee vs. Arizona in the finals.

Mixed Martial Arts: Johnnie Morton made his MMA debut and got absolutely obliterated, KO'ed in 38 seconds and taken off the mat in a neck brace, then refusing to submit to drug tests afterward. When insult and injury are so intermingled that you can't even hope to untangle them, that's a bad night.

Pop Culture Watch: Sopranos. Did you catch the normally straighter-than-straight-laced Eric Mangini make a cameo appearance on The Sopranos? Nice to see him get in just under the wire. Funny: I would have figured Tony Soprano to be a Giants guy.

As the Sopranos heads into its final week of existence (new episodes, at least), it's worth asking if it's the greatest dramatic series in TV history (it's unfair to compare it to the greatest TV sit-coms ever, like Seinfeld or The Simpsons... apples and oranges).

I know a lot of people think it's the greatest TV drama of all time. I'm not going to try to disagree with you. There's only one show I'd rank ahead of it: "The Wire." (Trying to rank-order "The Sopranos" vs. "The Wire" could be one freaking hell of an awesome PhD dissertation.)

-- D.S.


RT said...

Welcome back from the dead Florida basketball. Boo.

Geoff said...

Donovan comes off as a joke here. Hope he is happy at Florida for a real long time cause no pro team is going to take a chance on him after this. Amazing he can be such a good coach while being such a flip-flopper. And just FYI, 2 titles isn't a dynasty. I know there are constant attempts to devalue that word but come on.

Tigers had a weird weekend. Friday nights game could have been totally crushing but then they came back with 2 solid wins after that. Once they start getting healthy they are going to be very dangerous.

Roge said...

What about Band of Brothers as a better dramatic series? I know it was short (10 episodes), but those 10 were just outstanding.

chitown italian said...

I love it! I now have another reason to dislike UF. To repeat my previous comment, did Donovan talk to Spurrier AFTER he signed on with Orlando?

Taking odds here: I am buying a pair of boxing gloves to bring to the next Cubs game I attend. I am going to see if Zambrano will sign the left one and Barrett sign the right one. So what are my odds of getting them to sign the pair?

Even though the Cubbies are horrendous this year at least they are entertaining. I guess $300M doesn't buy what it used to.

Mikepcfl said...

It's very close, but I would have to put The Wire just ahead of the Sopranos. They have similiar quality, but the way The Wire addresses our society's social ills puts it over the top. You cant watch The Wire without feeling pain for our inner cities.

MLB dud: O's bullpen. Every Monday morning they are listed as a dud.

CMFost said...

I would rank a couple of shows over the Soprano's if you look at the series as a whole. It was a great show the first 3 years but has not been the same since.

I would put The Shield and The Wire as better shows then The Soprano's. If we are talking HBO. I would put the Wire and Deadwood ahead of the Soprano's

Adam Giblin said...

I agree with Geoff. Dan, I like that you tried to present a glimmer of the Donovan criticism, but ultimately your homer-ness kicked in and you couldn't do it. He didn't turn down the closest thing to his NBA dream job -- he accepted it, got scared, and tried to run home. The Magic definitely deserve financial restitution, and I feel like the NCAA should make him sit out a year. If a player pulled this kind of move (signing a contract!), he's never be welcome back.

Unknown said...

But....he didn't get released from the Magic yet, so aren't you jumping the gun by saying he's for sure returning? If I were the Magic, I'd force a year out of him...that's what he gets for signing the contract.

Basically, Geoff put it best.

Jingoist said...

Who's with me on the "boosters force Donovan back" bandwagon? Something tells Billy's little "prayer session" last week might be code for "booster phone calls versus Magic phone calls". And my guess is, the boosters had their own little "confessional" this weekend (read: Donovan cornered).

All my speculation of course, but still it makes a better read than simply flip-flopping like Belichcik/Sen. Kerry/Saban/Altman.

rafael said...

What future job would entice Donovan?
Depends on how he makes out. He still has lost a lot of talent. If he struggles in the next couple of seasons, he might be looking towards the NBA again.
As a recruit, I'd be looking at two things a)a team that is starting over and b) a coach with a wandering eye. On the positive, you have a better chance of playing time...the negative? How much stability is there in that program? Kentucky would look far more attractive a destination at this point.

Cavs will approach the Finals with a 'just happy to be here' mentality. But I think the Fire has been lit in LeBron. I say the Spurs take the first 2 games, LeBron will will a tie at 2-2...then Spurs close them out in 6.

rafael said...

Geez jingo..if you're going to mention Kerry as a flip=flopper, just add every that list. tsk

ToddTheJackass said...

Studs and Duds from Yesterday:

1. J.P. Howell - W, 8.0IP, ER, 5H, 7Ks
2. Albert Pujols - 2-5, 2HR, 3RBI
3. Doug Davis - W, 7.2IP, ER, 6H, 3BB, 6Ks
4. Victor Diaz - 2-4, 2HR, 5RBI
5. Vlad Guerrero - Walk-off, 2R HR

1. Chris Ray - L, BS, 0+IP, 2H, 2ER, HR
2. Lance Cormier - L, 4.0IP, 8ER, 9H
3. Robinson Tejeda - L, 5.2IP, 7ER, 8H, 3BB
4. Carlos Delgado - 0-4, 3Ks
5. Salomon Torres - L, 0.1IP, 2ER, 4H

Honorary Team Stud: Yankees (except Jeter)

Honorary Team Dud: Red Sox (except Pedroia).

futurelegendvinceyoung said...

Dan I thought Miss Havisham from Great Expectations was the most spurned woman in the history of literature. Remember she had kept all the clocks set to the time that her wedding would have taken place and she ruined Estella to the point that she did not soften until her husband died.

I have heard nothing but good things about the Wire but have not had a chance to screen it. I think that the first 2 seasons of the Sopranos would rival any dramatic television show but since Nancy Marchand (she played Olivia) the show has not, to me, been as good. I still think it is an excellent show but it kind of fell off when Janice took Olivia's place as the conniving Soprano woman.

Natsfan74 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roscoe said...

One mention and I let it slide, but at the second College Hoops Mount Rushmore comment, I couldn't reisist throwing out the name Roy Williams as another potential face up on the mount. COnsider: 106-30 (0.779) in four seasons at North Carolina and 524-131 (0.800) in 19 seasons with the Tar Heels and Kansas.

Compared to Billy's UFlorida 261-103 (.717) and overall 296-123 (.706).

That's a lot of percentage points difference.

Michael said...

Is it fair to put HBO series against network television. I think that they should be classed out of a the discussion here as they obviously ave the competitive advantage of being on HBO. My vote goes to The West Wing (and of course I put Wire and opranos ahead but that's why I'm making this argument). It also seems very short sited to only pick such modern shows but I really can't think of anything better.

I'm a UF grad and have lived in the state of Florida my whole life which makes me more qualified than band wagon Dan, (can we start calling it the Dan Wagon?). I have mixed emotions about Billy I was ready to usher in a new era of Gator Hoops and pretty excited about AG plus this whole thing makes Billy look like a huge douche but how can you complain about getting a proven recruiter (moderate X and O coach) and 2 time national champion coach back.

marcomarco said...

Donovan comes off as:

Your girlfriend that you just married, had an amazing wedding/honeymoon, decides to leave you for P Diddy.

And after spending one week and the MTV movie awards with the Diddler, your bride realizes the error in her ways when Puffy explains her place in his entourage.

"But, I really love you sugarmuffin! I'm sorry, it will never happen again"

Would you welcome her back with open arms? (i guess so, seeing as you blog-polish Donovan's knob so frequently.)

Natsfan74 said...

The real question with Billy D is what kind of extension will he get now? Florida arguably can't pay him more than Urban Meyer anyway, as Meyer also has a national championship in a sport which produces more revenue (and until the world totally shifts, Florida is still a football first school). Plus, they now have Donovan cornered, as he can't go anywhere else and maintain any sense of credibility. My guess is they pay him well, but not nearly what he would have gotten if he had negotiated a raise before accepting the Magic offer. He is negotiating from a position of total weakness -- like having your car explode in front of a car dealership or something.

Unless, of course, there is already a ridiculous offer in place that made him "reconsider" his loyalty. If that is the case, I hope the Magic sue the crap out of him!

Michael said...

The diff between billy and Roy is that Roy hasn't had to build a program he has coched at established program and billy has that pesky extra ring that makes him better. Plus noone whines quite as much as Roy Williams, what a baby.

ToddTheJackass said...

I hope that if Donovan returns to Florida that he really sucks this year.

Never used to hate Billy Donovan for reasons other than Dan's love affair with him, but now he's definitely in the Saban media whore-dom douchebaggery asshole-y status. What I'm basically saying is, I'd laugh if someone slashed his tires.

Jingoist said...


For the NHL Pronger = Superstar.

The NHL has always been great at giving preferential treatment to its superstars. Read: Rule changes on behalf of Gretzky, Lemieux and Crosby/Ovechkin/Europe et al.

Taking Pronger out of the Finals for more than a game would:
a) take away the 1 and only noteworthy matchup of the series- Ottawa's offense versus the wall defense of Anaheim (spearheaded by Niedermayer and Pronger). Which in turn (and more importantly) would...
b) possibly ruin the Ducks chances at a Cup- and we KNOW Bettman wants the Cup in a profile market like Anaheim/L.A. rather than "Siberia" (i.e., Ottawa, Canada) regardles of whats best for the game.

Stephe said...

If someone writes a PhD. dissertation about the Sopranos and the Wire, remind me to not let my kids go to college.

Patriots64 said...

Re: Pronger suspension

1 game in the Finals is equivalent to 2 in the WCF etc. He got what he deserved IMO!!!!

Ed Lamb said...

No love for Homicide: Life on the Streets? That show set the template for The Wire, and Andre Braugher was as good in the role of Frank Premberton as any actor has ever been in any role.

As for Donovan's fli-flop, I agree that he should be forced to honor his contract with Orlando or made to sit out at least a year by the NCAA (does the NCAA have any authority here?).

The time for decision making is before you come to a final decision. If you find out later you made the wrong choice, then you just have to deal with the consequeces.

It is is a mystery, as Geoff wrote, that Donovan could have any success as a player or coach when he obviously has serious indecissiveness and professional commitment issues.

Chris said...


Now that is a little piece of brilliance early on a Monday morning. "Dan Wagon", I love it. I think we should all agree that we refer to any Gator athletic program in the future, on this blog, as the "Dan Wagon" Gators. Nothing would describe his "loyalty" to Florida any better than that.

Brian in Oxford said...

I would like to see car races forced to perform in the rain. Then maybe some of those tire companies can put their money where their mouths are. Come on, I still had to drive to work in the rain this morning, why can't Jeff Gordon, too? No, speeds won't (or shouldn't) approach 200 mph....but the whole idea is to be in control of your car. If that means 75 mph, it still would show off some skills for certain drivers over others.

ToddTheJackass said...

Yes, we need to start calling it the "Dan Wagon"

It is done.

verbal97 said...

A more interesting debate would be network vs. HBO/Showtime

The West Wing
Law and Order


Six Feet Under
The Sopranos
The Wire
Big Love
The L Word

Mega said...

MLB duds- White Sox bullpen
Just how many games is this bullpen gonna blow this year? What has it been already, 11? 12?

MLB duds- White Sox hitting. Combined 1-60 in the last few games against relief pitching.

MLB studs- anyone playing the Sox right now.

MLB dud- despite their troubles, does anyone else think that Clemens purposely cancelled himself to pitch at the Sox than the less talented Pirates?

Mega said...

Donovan = Saban. Book it.

futurelegendvinceyoung said...

Michael Roy Williams went to a Kansas program that was on probation after Larry Brown skipped town. When he went to Carolina they had the talent but they were coming off the worst years in the history of the program.

Geoff said...

The problem with racing in the rain is that no one would want to watch it. Seeing a bunch of guys driving around a track at 70 mph scared to pass anyone doesn't make for good TV. (As it is a lot of people don't like to watch racing at 200mph)

TBender said...

Todd said:
"Stud #2. Albert Pujols - 2-5, 2HR, 3RBI"

In any other ballpark, he would have been 4-5, 4HR, 6RBI.

2 balls combined for 800'+ of distance and neither left the yard. Oh how I hate MMP.

Add a Stud to Hunter Pence, 4-5--with the answering HR to Pujols in the 8th--and 2 great rundowns of Pujols 400'+ shots to center.
I hope he's not too late to the ROY discussion.

Anonymous said...

I watched the Sopranos for 3 years. I really lost interest after the layoff and haven't watched it this year. I think the writing goes for the sensationalist way too often. The show is basically a soap opera with cursing and people getting beaten with baseball bats. I wouldn't put it in my top 10 for any list let alone best drama. In a drama you have to care about characters for it to be good.

I saw Knocked Up with my wife and another couple. I kept looking at my watch to see when it would be over. I can't totally rip it. It had a few funny moments - I won't give any spoilers away. However it was supposed to be a comedy and quite frankly it wasn't funny enough. There weren't enough jokes and way too much couples arguing and fighting with a totally nonsensical plot. I was the only one in the group who didn't see 40 Year Old Virgin. The consensus was that 40 YOV was far far funnier than Knocked Up. Wait for the movie on PPV or video is my final say.

Robert said...

Wow Dan, wow. All i can think of when I hear the word Jilt is Granny Weatherall... made my day.

jhawkjjm said...

I really hate to bring this up, but I find Clemens getting scratched from his start tonight absolutely hilarious. A tired groin? There's just way too many comments I could make.

Geoff said...

Hmm... everyone I know that saw Knocked Up said it was hilarious and it is carrying a 92% at Rotten Tomatoes. I think you might be in the small minority there.

Anonymous said...

I agree, Band of Brothers was probably my favorite drama series of all time.

Patriots64 said...

Hunter Pence was my vote for the 2 month NL Roy and is definitely not too late!!

Band of Brother's is the best miniseries ever!

Anonymous said...

Geoff, I am probably in the minority but I am just curious what you say when you go see it. Like I said, Knocked Up had some funny scenes but what I was missing was the fast forward button at times.

Geoff said...

I think I am rather preprogrammed to enjoy it. I was/am a big fan of Freaks & Geeks and a lot of the same talent is there is Knocked Up.

I am going sometime this week and I'll post my thoughts. Couldn't make it over the weekend cause I was busy and/or too depressed after the Piston games.

rafael said...

Band of Brothers is in my top 5 for miniseries.

Roots is still my #1.

rafael said...

noone liked North and South? lolololololol

ToddTheJackass said...

Hunter Pence is definitely not too late into the ROY race, and right now is probably the co-favorite along with Lincecum. Remember that 2 years ago Ryan Howard won the award without playing a full season either.

Last year was just a historically amazing year for rookies, in that someone like Jered Weaver did not have a shot at ROY since Verlander was awesome during the whole year, and Papelbon and Liriano were equally dominant during their shortened seasons.

Jingoist said...

I think this entire blog should actually henceforth be called, "The Dan Wagon". Waaaaaaaaaaaay better than And much MUCH more marketable in the "blogiverse". Ask yoursevles this, would you rather someday see a quote in the NY Times or Boston Globe that got scooped from "Dan at" or from "Dan at 'The'".

It's like saying Will @ Deadspin or even Ufford @ WithLeather.

And besides, we ALL know that "Dan Wagon" is tongue and cheek humor that everyone here appreciates much more so than a slap at Dan (which, it kind of is, but much much much too funny to ever take as a slight and Dan, being the cerebral blogger he is, appreciates that I am sure). Afterall the beauty of this blog (like good blogs) is the tight cast and crew who "gets it" (i.e., the tone/personality of the blog).

All in favor of a blog name change to "The Dan"?

Dan- come on man! This is how legends are born!

Anonymous said...

Back to sports now.

I agree Billy Donovan = Saban.

Word of advice to Donovan. Before signing a multi-year multi-million dollar contract it is probably a good idea to take a couple of days and think it through.

Nice to see the Yanks pull it out over the Red Sox last night. The bull pen actually held the lead and the Red Sox blew it. Too bad Pettite didn't get the win but the net result is what counts.

Roge said...

Seriously Dan, you have to consider changing the name of the blog. At first I thought it was just a funny line ribbing you a bit. But now as jingoist said, the is a brilliant blog name. Do it!

Trayton Otto said...

Long live Tammy Williams, SS! I hope the Wildcats make it back next year so I can watch her play again.

chitown italian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chitown italian said...

DANWAGON it is but I like one word better.

Clemens must be hanging with A-Rod to get the fatigued groin. Did he have a different bunny with him or did they share?

Jingoist said...

It doesn't have to be 2 words, geez. I was just typing, not editing- after all, I don't get paid for this stuff!

Geoff said...

I gotta say, has some serious potential. Not only does it cover Dan's allegiance to Florida, it also covers his allegiance to anything that is topical that day and can refer to all of us that followed him over from Page 2.

Mikepcfl said...

I'll vote for danwagon as well. Great idea.

ToddTheJackass said...

Domain names are pretty cheap aren't they? Also, there is no either.

I guess the question is whether or not you're using the blog to promote yourself, for which makes more sense, or if you want to grow the blog, which is cooler.

Brian in Oxford said...

If Chuck Klosterman were to guest-write one day while Dan was on vacation, would it be chuckwagon for a day?

I like the DanWagon idea, too. Now we need a logo. Like Dan driving a chuck wagon / prairie settler vehicle...with a UF gator in the front seat riding along.

Patriots64 said...

David Beckham is having second thoughts about ending his playing career in the footballing backwater of the United States. The former England captain, 32, signed a five-year contract worth £125 million with LA Galaxy in January after being sidelined by Real Madrid as well as Steve McClaren's England. But while Beckham insists that his US move will not harm his chances of continuing his international comeback, his return and the reception he received from the 90,000-strong crowd at the new Wembley Stadium on Friday night have made him reconsider his desire to continue playing club football at a high level.

Natsfan74 said...

I like the DanWagon idea. It is one of those things that people who have read him since ESPN will totally get.

Now I hope no one goes out and buys the site just to try to sell to Dan for a profit.

But, I think we've discovered that Dan never reads the comments any more, so someone will have to email it to him.

Mega said...

Best. Idea. Ever.

Do it Shanoff, do it.

thistlewarrior said...

Love the DanWagon idea. Particularly Brian's idea for a logo, but adding the NU wildcat running after it!

CMFost said...

Dud - Red Sox bullpen - But does it matter. The Yankees needed to win all 3 games for that series to really matter.

Dan, Go for the idea, great marketing potential

Geoff said...

The logo should have rotating random team logos.. as in.. What team is Dan rooting for today!

thistlewarrior said...


Glad to see I'm not the only one here watching the WCWS! For the rest of you, the best of 3 series that starts tonight (8pm ESPN2) pitting one the most dominating pitchers the game has ever seen, Monica Abbott, vs. Arizona's potent offence. Abbott has racked up 49K's in their first 3 games and now holds nearly all NCAA Div. I pitching records.

Mikepcfl said...

No, the logo should not have the wildcat following the danwagon, but the danwagon should be seen running over the Wildcat!

chitown italian said...

Nice one Geoff. I like the rotating logos.

Think we can commission the NCAA to let us use all 119 (however many there are these days) Division I logos and mascots?

thistlewarrior said...


marcomarco said...

Chiming in with the masses on the namechange., do it.

Is D-Wagon too close to D-Train?

Jingoist said...

I took the liberty of making a quick danwagon

ToddTheJackass said...

I think adding a crying NU cheerleader following the FL Danwagon would be more appropriate.

Yeah, that pitch selection/execution to A-Rod was pretty terrible. An 0-2 pitch, you have a nasty split and a sweet high fastball, and yet you throw one low and over the plate?

Dan Shanoff said...

"" is so hilarious that I cannot stop laughing about it this morning. I say points to all of you for delivering it (and running with it) in the spirit in which it was delivered.

At some point, I am going to have to write a defense of the sincerity of my Florida fandom. As for "DanWagon" covering my usual daily "Instant History" ("LeBron sucks! No, wait: he rules!" etc.), it's spot on.

Admit it, though: EVERYONE deploys "instant history" and constantly jumps on and off bandwagons. Sure, you have your favorite "die-hard" teams and players, but otherwise? Come on. All bandwagon, all the time. That's sports.

Natsfan74 said...

Wow, now you have a website and a motto/ marketing gimmick -- all bandwagon, all the time!

Dan Shanoff said...

Oh, I'm not changing the title of the blog to "," by the way. But I'm happy to put the phrase just below the title, in homage to this meme. We'll see how long it lasts...

thistlewarrior said...

love the danwagon, jingo!

marcomarco said...

"all bandwagon, all the time!"

is alot less brokeback than

"Jump on the DanWagon"

pv845 said...

"Danwagon" there is not a word to describe it so I will follow the immortal James Lipton's lead and call it Scrumtralecent.

Actually I understand being a bandwagon fan, but shouldn't it be about time for you to get off your FL kick and return to your die hard team, Northwestern. I mean you do actually have a connection to that school.

ToddTheJackass said...

Yes Jingoist receives top-billing for Commenter "Stud" today.

Glad you still do read the comments Dan. You should comment more often when you get the chance, especially when people provide a well thoughtout challenge to your ideas.

Maybe there's some happy middle-ground between changing the blog-name and just putting it as a sub-headline? Perhaps some kind of weekly blog entry (expanding beyond the quickie) on the status of fandom, called the Danwagon?

marcomarco said...

Back to sports:

Yanks not exiting Clemens deal

But it would be nice to see a team give Roger the shaft, for a change.

Tino said...

If building a program from scratch and winning two national championships is what it takes, then where is Jim Calhoun's Irish, curmudgeon face on that Mount Rushmore? He's even in the Hall of Fame already.

ToddTheJackass said...

I believe Jim Calhoun's "Irish, curmudgeon face" can be found somewhere in a dark corner in his office crying while waiting for an invitation to the NIT.

Patriots64 said...

Can we name our Fantasy Football League fans??

Dan Shanoff said...

I've launched a new widget on the right-hand side of the blog called the "Twitter Bandwagon Watch," which I'll update as my Bandwagon preferences change. But if Twitter is going to continue to have a lag between me posting to it and it updating on the blog, that's going to be a problem. Maybe it'll just have to be a new feature of the usual a.m. post that includes "Bandwagon of the Day."

Tino said...


One season does not a career make. What are you, a UMass fan?

Brian in Oxford said...

worse, tino....he's a BC fan.

(where the unity of Red Sox fans separates, state by state)

Brian in Oxford said...

Dan, you definitely have to get that picture of jingoist's in there somehow.

ToddTheJackass said...

Tino, I'm a BC fan, and I'm just enjoying ragging on Calhoun while I can.

Dan, you need to call it the Danwagon of the day.

Anonymous said...

I'm a little confused.

Are we now on a "danwagon" to change the name to "danwagon"?

But the title of the blog could clearly be... Home of the "DanWagon"

Ryan said...

I don't post on here all that much, but I read the posts everyday. One thing that annoys me is when people who don't follow hockey and don't really know much about it jump up and down when a bad incident happens and then talk like they know what's good for the game.

Look, Pronger's elbow isn't the equivalent to someone throwing a dirty elbow in the paint in the NBA, or something along those lines. To me, it looked like Pronger stepped up to make a hit and his elbow caught Macammond in the head. It was an unfortunate incident, to me. Hockey's a physical game...sometimes you are going to have contact outside the rules, even if it is unintentional, and you have to serve the time.

Oh, and the play that Pronger got suspended on in the WCF? Yeah, Niedermeyer actually got a penalty on that hit. That's something you don't hear about often...

Roscoe said...

Yeah, Roy was in established programs, but let's see how Billy's team performs this year after losing his championship roster. Roy killed the preseason expectations after losing 4 players to the draft following their championship run. And what would Roy's odds of winning a second in a row have been if Felton, May, McCants and Williams stayed? Pretty high.

Sure winning 2 in a row is a helluva thing, but so is a 0.800 winning percentage, which shows a consistently high level of recruiting and coaching. And .779 in the ACC? (SEC and Acc have near identical conference RPIs in the yrs since Roy got to UNC, although with the ACC having the edge each yr.) Smokin' hot.

And for comparison to a figure on Hoops Rushmore. Coach K's overall winning percentage 0.754. In the ACC 0.776.

We'll talk Billy when he gets those winning percentages up and wins it all with another team. True, Roy needs to do this to secure his place here too.

Jingoist said...

OK, updated the logo to have Dan's rotating logo .

Kurt said...

"CMFost said...
Dud - Red Sox bullpen - But does it matter. The Yankees needed to win all 3 games for that series to really matter."

I'm glad you finally came through with you're "Arod game-winning homerun means nothing" comment, I was waiting for it. You couldn't possibly give the Yankees credit for making Beckett throw 117 pitches in 6.1 innings or to Arod for coming through in the clutch.

Dave Jackson said...

In my sophomore English class, we were all assigned American authors on which to do reports, and I got Katherine Anne Porter. I read a few of her books and stories (including "The Jilting of Granny Weatherall") and I haven't heard from her since!

ToddTheJackass said...

Why Francona ever chose to bring Beckett out in the 7th inning I'll never figure out. Francona did go kind of "Torre" on his bullpen last night, really not looking like many guys were in his "circle of trust." That could be a disturbing trend, but one that could be remedied IF Timlin can come back healthy.

The Yankees winning that game will only mean something if they play this hard and do as well against teams other than the Red Sox as well. Last time they took 2 of 3 from the Red Sox they proceeded to lose the next, what, 5 games in a row?

So I'd agree with CMfost that from the Red Sox perspective, in the grand scheme of things this probably isn't that big of a deal with the 12.5 game lead still, but for the Yankees, it could mean a lot. Time will tell.

And besides, the A-Rod home run was huge, but really Posada won that game for them.

eileen said...

I'm on the DanWagon- I think it's a great name for the blog.

The Legend of Vincent Tremblay said...

Racing in the rain: Hey, F1 fans, remember the 2000 German GP at Hockenheim? Among the other craziness at that race, it started raining over only half of the circuit. While everybody else pitted for rain tires, Rubens Barrichello stayed on his dry tires. The field was running consistently slower times on all areas of the track, while Rubens was coddling the car through the rain, then driving like a maniac through the dry sections to make up. The gamble paid off, and Barrichello won his first career GP.

Of course, a stock car in rain is an entirely different beast than an open-wheeler, regardless of tire.

Pronger: The NHL can't win that. One game isn't enough for a repeat offender. Anything more than one game, though, and people would cry that the fix is in, and Bettman is trying to give the Cup back to Canada.

I think the league is just thankful that Pronger's elbow distracted everybody from that awful, awful call on the Alfredsson kick-in "goal".

Jingoist said...

Realized my last link went awry for Dan's logo. Trying again .

CMFost said...

Kurt when your team if 12.5 games back a game winning HR is meaningless unless the team follows it up with a winning streak that gets them back in the race. Let's see if it helps the Yankees tonight.

ndyanksfan05 said...

I think a posoda for AL mvp needs to get pushed stronger...the guy is dominant right now in all aspects of his game - he is hitting for power, average and playing great defense.

ToddTheJackass said...

Posada is playing great, yes. But his team is currently killing his chances of being an MVP candidate (see Ortiz, David, 2006). Not to mention that the team's 3rd baseman is actually better. With their stats fairly comparable, Youk would currently have the edge over Posada IMO, (although I'd have A-Rod ahead of both).

Also, it's the Magglio Ordonez for MVP that needs to get pushed. He's having an amazing year, and doing it on a winning team.

Brigadier Pudding said...

At least Van Gundy has the qualifications to be an NBA head coach. Billy Donovan is about as qualified as I am.

CMFost said...

2:20 p.m. ET -- NASCAR pioneer Bill France Jr. has died.

ndyanksfan05 said...

youk has a lower BA, fewer RBIs and a lower does he get the edge? He does have 1 more HR...

ToddTheJackass said...

Both are having fantastic years, not here to argue against that. Here are Posada's and Youk's stats:

.363/.415/.582 33R, 37RBI, 26XBH

.350/.433/.549 42R, 31RBI, 25XBH

My argument was that their numbers were similar enough that Youk gets the edge for being on the best team.

But Magglio's numbers are superior to both:

.362/.436/.681 50R, 52RBI, 41XBH

Vlad is also an absolute stud, and might actually mean more to his team than anyone of the other guys.

CMFost said...

Posada vs Youkillis:











P: 582
Y: 549



Team Record:

MVP vote if you only looked at these to players: Youkilis

ToddTheJackass said...

As of right now, I'd have the AL MVP race at:

1) Magglio
2) Vlad
3) A-Rod
4a) Youk
4b) Posada
5) Sizemore

ndyanksfan05 said...

you forgot an error commited by Youk this weekend...

I still don't buy it based soley on numbers...Posada has better numbers (however slightly) this year than Youk regardless of team record.

IkeKrizzule said...

I don't know it was mentioned, and can't read the other comments due to threat of Soprano's spoilers (I'm watching it tonight), but the one thing that popped to mind right away is this. Donovan takes the Magic job, and the extra $1-2 million per season (or whatever it was), but over the weekend the boosters say, "Billy, if it was just about the money how about we make it worth your while to stick around?".

I'm not saying it happened, I don't know Billy Donovan, may be he did just decide to come back for the love of coaching college basketball at Florida, but its something that I would think the NCAA should take a very serious look into.

ToddTheJackass said...

Yeah, I noticed that too. Youk hasn't committed an error at 1B, so I think a lot of people are confusing that.

I can understand the nod to Posada. I'd be more sympathetic to the C vs 1B argument though. Where does Posada's CS rate this year in comparison to other catchers?

My argument was just more that things being relatively equal, the player on the team with the best record will generally get it over the player on the team with a sub-.500 record. Fair or not, that's sort of how the MVP is in most years.

Johnny b said...

Keith, I totally disagree about the kick in goal. I thought it was a good call. In my eyes the puck was clearly off the skate before the kicking motion happened which means that he just directed it and then tried to stop which made it look like a kicking motion.

I think they got it right

Patriots64 said...

Agreed, Alfie's goal was good, it directed off his skate prior to the kicking motion, therefore legal goal and the call on the ice was overturned!

Big D said...

This is why I need to just pony up the dough for HBO. I've only seen one season of The Sopranos, Season 4 (The Pie-O-My / Ralphie season) when some buddies in college sprung for the Premium Cable package.

I have gotten really into The Wire over the past few weeks, watching all the episodes through the power of a NetFlix membership and way too many hours of downtime and boredom.

As for sports this weekend... well, let's just say it really sucks still having to rely on bunny-ears and delayed web-stream broadcasts for all my sports. I'm so out of touch - does LA still have a football team? And the Knicks are still an NBA powerhouse, right?

Brian in Oxford said...

Yeah, D. They kept the Frazier-DeBusschere-Bradley nucleus together and added Earl Monroe. They've been quite unstoppable this spring.

Big D said...

By the way - if it hasn't already been said, let me point this out:

"Jump on the DanWagon" has serious potential here people. Like "You're with me, Leather" potential. I can easily see some of the people on here getting way too much mileage out of this one...

rafael said...

You know...reading Andy Katz about the Donovan situation... i wonder if he has chapped lips...

Geoff said...

Posada has nice numbers, but just like the A-Rod argument of last week, how valuable can you be if your team is terrible. Either way he is well below Magglio in any MVP discussion right now.

Natsfan74 said...

I like the Danwagon, and am ready to climb aboard, but this seems like a perfectly placed distraction to keep us from talking about Billy D - Bag.

I wonder what the Magic are thinking right about now. Do they have a no-takebacks clause in the contract that is actually enforceable?

Patriots64 said...

Bears' Johnson bannedThe NFL suspended Bears DT Tank Johnson for the first eight games of the 2007 season for violating personal conduct policy.

ToddTheJackass said...

I think Orlando could sue Donovan for breach of contract, but considering he's only been signed for like three days, I can't imagine the damages would amount to much of anything. I can't even imagine that one could make the argument that the Magic will have endured any kind of PR hit, since they won't be the ones looking bad.

bayne_s said...

Only comprable flip-flop I can think of is Bobby Cremins agreed to take the Job at South Carolina (his alma Mater) around 1993 and returned to Georgia Tech within the week.

Jingoist said...

Here's a "3-way trade" that makes sense.

Yankees trade Roger Clemens to the Orlando Magic and the Magic trade Billy D back to the Gators. Everyone wins!

The Yankees get out of paying a ridiculous contract to a (100 year old) pitcher already injured before he even starts 1 game for them.

The Magic still get a high-profile name to coach the team and generate revenue. (Who cares if Clemens never coached in the NBA? Neither did Billy D!)

Florida gets their man Billy the Kid back and because of the Clemens generated buzz/revenue in Orlando, don't owe the Magic money.

I think this should shape up by week's end, I really do.

Michael said...

Wow I leave the comuter to do some work for 5 hours and then Dan Wagon Comment gets a life of its own, sad to say this is perhaps my greatest accomplishment!!

Unknown said...

go danwagon!

chitown italian said...

Listening to the Mike's this morning it sounds like Orlando will take a big PR hit. I was still waking up but I thought I heard them say 2,000 season ticket packages were sold.

Since I am not a huge NBA fan I can only imagine how much each package goes for. If I was an Orlando fan, I'd be having my attorney contact the team for a full refund.

I would also be calling my credit card company to say the product they offered when I bought the tickets is not the same as advertised and want to dispute the charges.

ToddTheJackass said...

2,000 extra season tickets would be substantial. But I think the Orlando Sentinel has the number at only 200.


thistlewarrior said...

200 not 2000. Damn those factors of 10!

Regardless, it is still a large number for just a few days and imo the buyers should have a right to their money back if he does go back to UF.

ToddTheJackass said...

Also, for what it's worth, here's what Baseball America had to say about Samardzjia:

The fifth-rounder who signed a major league contract worth $10 million was pretty good in his second-to-last start when he allowed a run on two hits over five innings against Fort Myers. But Samardzija has allowed nine hits or more in five of his 11 outings and has proven very hittable in his first full season. In 52 innings, the 22-year-old righthander and former Notre Dame wideout has allowed 76 hits and fanned just 20.

Joey said...

Sizemore is coming around, but you'd have to give the nod so far for the Indians MVP to Victor Martinez or Jhonny Peralta.

The Legend of Vincent Tremblay said...

Alfie's Kick-in: We can agree to disagree on the follow-through, but he saw the puck coming to him, and changed the angle of his skate.

Besides, the NHL set the standard in the first two rounds, by calling no-goal on pucks that deflected off skates when the player had no idea the puck was coming. (See also: Karel Rachunek in the BUF-NYR series, Sidney Crosby in OTT-PIT.)

If unintentional, blind bounces are not goals in the previous rounds, how can Alfie get a goal in the Finals when he saw the puck coming?

Johnny b said...

Keith it's because you're allowed to purposely deflect the puck into the net as long as you don't actually kick it in. And don't get me started on the Crosby play (I've been a huge Pens fan my entire life); they missed that. They got the one a few days ago right which I'm glad about.

rafael said...

Simmons blasts Cowherd in his column today.