Sunday, September 30, 2012

Dropping Links: Sunday, September 30, 2012

Some links from the week that was in the parts of the blogosphere that I enjoy:

- Dwight Howard has been on an "image restoration" tour, trying to wipe away the memory of him holding a franchise hostage for almost two years. |With Leather|

- The Bikini Basketball League's Miami Spice hijacked the Seattle Supersonics logo. |Ball Don't Lie|

- NBA 2K13, which hits stores Tuesday, shows off the Brooklyn Nets' new uniforms. |Buzzfeed|

- Speaking of the game, some details on 2K13's "Association Mode." |Pastapadre|

- Keith Hernandez went through with it the other day, shaving his mustache for charity. |Hall of Very Good|

- WWE released Kelly Kelly. |Ringside Rants|

- The guy that played the Sherminator in American Pie is now a sushi waiter in Los Angeles. So he's basically like every other waiter/actor in LA. |FilmDrunk|

- Franklin & Bash got renewed for a third season, bros. |Warming Glow|

(Image courtesy Roberto Gonzalez, Orlando Sentinel)

Saturday, September 29, 2012

WWTDD sums up Jay-Z's "ownership" of the Nets perfectly

The fine folks at WWTDD put Jay-Z's "ownership" of the Nets into better perspective than I could have, but the sentiment is the same:
That, and this Wall Street Journal article with the headline, “Jay-Z: Bringing Nets to Brooklyn an American dream”, and his buddy Kanye writing lyrics about Kris Humphries that say, “Lucky I ain’t had Jay drop him from the team”, pretty much imply that Jay Z runs the Nets.

In reality he only owns one-fifteenth of one percent (that’s 0.00066666666 percent) of the team. Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov owns 80 percent (and half of Barclays Center). And he didn’t bring them to Brooklyn either. That was already the idea before Jay was ever approached about being an investor. Basically this is like Jay Z bought a plane ticket on Delta and then took credit when it landed.
While we can't understate the impact Jay-Z has had on the image of the Nets to players, fans and the media, let's not overstate his involvement in bringing them to Brooklyn or his day-to-day influence on the business decisions of the franchise.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

NFL Power Rankings: Week 4

1. Houston Texans (3-0) LW: 2
A strong performance against the Broncos and the 49ers’ loss moves the Texans up to the top spot.

2. Atlanta Falcons (3-0) LW: 3
The Falcons dominated the Chargers, remaining undefeated. The team is running on all cylinders.

3. Arizona Cardinals (3-0) LW: 16
A huge leap up for the Cards, moving 13 spots. Probably a little high for them but as one of only three undefeated teams remaining, I had to show Arizona some respect.

4. New York Giants (2-1) LW: 4
The G-Men handled the Panthers Thursday night, even without Hakeem Nicks and Ahmad Bradshaw, thanks to big performances from Andre Brown and Ramses Barden.

5. San Francisco 49ers (2-1) LW: 1
The Niners dropped after a tough loss to the Vikings.

6. Baltimore Ravens (2-1) LW: 9
Baltimore edged out the Patriots in an emotional Sunday night game, following the death of Torrey Smith’s brother. Smith led the way with two touchdown catches.

7. Green Bay Packers (1-2) LW: 5
The Packers got absolutely hosed by the officials and lost on a hail mary touchdown that shouldn’t have been. Even though the first half was a sack fest, the GB defense held the Seahawks in check for most of the game, up until that infamous Golden Tate “touchdown.”

8. Philadelphia Eagles (2-1) LW: 6
The Eagles have not looked good at all this year and were lucky to be 2-0 coming into their matchup with the Cardinals. But a loss to an undefeated team can't drop you too fair in the power rankings.

9. New England Patriots (1-2) LW: 7
A tough loss to the Ravens drops the Pats a few spots.

10. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-2) LW: 8
The Steelers couldn't hold on against the Raiders and were handed their second loss of the season, both to members of the AFC West.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Video: Jon Jones submits Vitor Belfort to retain UFC Light Heavyweight Title at UFC 152

Weeks after his controversial decision to refuse a match against Chael Sonnen to save UFC 151, Jon Jones successfully defended his Light Heavyweight Championship against Vitor Belfort, winning via submission in the fourth round Saturday night.

Highlights, courtesy FOX Sports, via

Dropping Links: Sunday, September 23, 2012

Some links as you get the food ready and wait for the gang to come over for another Sunday full of football.

- Time Warner Cable finally got the NFL Network and Red Zone Channel, as the two entities came to terms Friday. |Awful Announcing|

- NHL 13 is doing well in sales despite the NHL being locked out. |Pastapadre|

- Former Yankee and Dodger Scott Proctor is doing well in Japan. |Hall of Very Good|

- Mike Florio has one interesting fact per game for today. |ProFootballTalk|

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

NFL Power Rankings: Week 3

We're getting right to the point for this week's Power Rankings. The 49ers stay at the top after a big win against Detroit and the Falcons slide up six spots after handling the Broncos on Monday night.

1. San Francisco 49ers (2-0) LW: 1

2. Houston Texans (2-0) LW: 4

3. Atlanta Falcons (2-0) LW: 9

4. New York Giants (1-1) LW: 5

5. Green Bay Packers (1-1) LW: 7

6. Philadelphia Eagles (2-0) LW: 11

7. New England Patriots (1-1) LW: 2

8. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-1) LW: 12

9. Baltimore Ravens (1-1) LW: 3

10. San Diego Chargers (2-0) LW: 14

11. Denver Broncos (1-1) LW: 6

12. Chicago Bears (1-1) LW: 8

13. Dallas Cowboys (1-1) LW: 10

14. Detroit Lions (1-1) LW: 13

15. Cincinnati Bengals (1-1) LW: 16

16. Arizona Cardinals (2-0) LW: 21

17. New York Jets (1-1) LW: 15

18. Washington Redskins (1-1) LW: 17

19. Seattle Seahawks (1-1) LW: 23

20. Carolina Panthers (1-1) LW: 24

21. St. Louis Rams (1-1) LW: 27

22. Indianapolis Colts (1-1) LW: 29

23. Buffalo Bills (1-1) LW: 30

24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1) LW: 22

25. New Orleans Saints (0-2) LW: 19

26. Tennessee Titans (0-2) LW: 20

27. Miami Dolphins (1-1) LW: 31

28. Minnesota Vikings (1-1) LW: 26

29. Kansas City Chiefs (0-2) LW: 18

30. Oakland Raiders (0-2) LW: 25

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2) LW: 28

32. Cleveland Browns (0-2) LW: 32

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Dropping Links: Sunday, September 16, 2012

Some links as you get ready to watch a full day of bowling on ESPN! Or football, if that's your thing.

- The NFL removed an official prior to the Saints game after pictures of him wearing Saints gear surfaced. |Bob's Blitz|

- Brian McIntyre takes you inside the NFL injury reports. |Shutdown Corner|

- A look inside Rajon Rondo's GQ internship. |Ball Don't Lie|

- The Saturday Night Live season premiere was last night. Here's a breakdown of the good and bad, with clips. |Warming Glow|

- The best and worst of the Toronto International Film Festival. |FilmDrunk|

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Video: First in-game trailer for NBA Live 13

Once the best NBA video game out there, NBA Live is now just struggling to stay afloat. After two years of not releasing a game at all, EA Sports is resurrecting the basketball franchise. Although, they've hit some snags and the game has been delayed, leading many to think it might not come out at all again this year.

This afternoon, EA released the first official in-game trailer for NBA Live 13.

It doesn't look terrible but EA Sports has a lot of catching up to do with the NBA 2K series.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Dropping Links: Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Late evening linkage:

- Manny Pacquiao will fight Juan Manual Marquez (who drinks his own pee) for a fourth time. Like everything in boxing, it's more about money and security than anything else. |ESPN|

- Kim Kardashian thinks the stress of her fake TV marriage is just like surviving cancer. |WWTDD|

- Mike Francesa fell asleep on the air yesterday. |Awful Announcing|

- An in depth look at the creation of the Knicks logo with the guy who designed it, Michael Doret. |Posting and Toasting|

- An update on that patch you just got for Madden 13. |Pastapadre|

Video: Madden 13 breaks down NFL's Week One

Some statistics from Madden 13 in comparison with what actually happened during the NFL's Week One, as well as a look forward to Thursday's Bears-Packers matchup.

NFL Power Rankings: Week 2

Week One is in the books and with that brings a lot of movement in the NFL Power Rankings. The 49ers leap up six spots and take the crown, while the Eagles and Lions managed to slide out of the Top Ten even in victory.

1. San Francisco 49ers (1-0) LW: 7
The Niners shut down the Packers’ running game, as everyone would expect, but also made Aaron Rodgers shaky in the pocket, winning a good game at Lambeau. Alex Smith looked sharp, tossing two TDs, and if he can play with the precision and ability he showed Sunday throughout this season, San Francisco will be a scary team.

2. New England Patriots (1-0) LW: 2
The Pats made light work of the Titans with the usual barrage of Brady passes to tight ends. New England’s newly improved defense looked stellar as well, which doesn’t bode well for their opponents.

3. Baltimore Ravens (1-0) LW: 5
The new no-huddle offense did wonders for the Ravens, adding a strong passing attack to an already good running and defensive team. If that continues, the Ravens will be the AFC representative in Super Bowl XLVII.

4. Houston Texans (1-0) LW: 4
Arian Foster did his usual thing, Andre Johnson had over 100 yards, and the Texans didn’t seem to miss Mario Williams at all.

5. New York Giants (0-1) LW: 1
A lot of flaws were revealed in New York’s Wednesday night loss to the Cowboys. The secondary needs a lot of work and some healthy bodies. The running game was non-existent. Victor Cruz forgot how to catch the ball.

6. Denver Broncos (1-0) LW: 6
Peyton Manning shook off the rust in a big way, leading the Broncos to victory at Mile High.

7. Green Bay Packers (0-1) LW: 3
Green Bay made a game of it against the 49ers but looked unimpressive throughout. A lot of that is a testament to San Francisco’s stellar defense, though.

8. Chicago Bears (1-0) LW: 9
Jay Cutler shrugged off an early pick six and came back with a strong game. Matt Forte looked healthy and Michael Bush came in to steal Forte’s touchdowns, to the chagrin of fantasy owners everywhere.

9. Atlanta Falcons (1-0) LW: 12
Matt Ryan and Julio Jones put on a show in Kansas City and Tony Gonzalez got his first TD at Arrowhead as a member of the visiting squad.

10. Dallas Cowboys (1-0) LW: 15
Tony Romo played one of his best games en route to a victory at MetLife Stadium.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Dropping Links: Sunday, September 9, 2012

The day is finally upon us. The first Sunday of NFL in 2012 and while you're gearing up for all the action, check out these links I cultivated just for you from around the web:

- Jerry Meals blew another call at the end of last night's Yankees-Orioles game. |Big League Stew|

- The first roster update for Madden 13 is now available for Xbox 360 and PS3. |Pastapadre|

- Here are five NFL teams that are worse than we think, according to Scott Pianowski. |Shutdown Corner|

- The Knicks unveiled those new uniforms we talked about. |Posting and Toasting|

- The Big 12 inked a big media deal with the ESPN/ABC family. |Awful Announcing|

And before you go, check out the first edition of my 2012 NFL Power Rankings.

(Image courtesy MLB.TV, via Big League Stew)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Bobby Valentine's true colors revealed in tense radio interview

It's crazy that it took this long for most people to realize that Bobby Valentine isn't some incredibly talented manager and is, in fact, just an arrogant jerk. Even though players have hated him throughout his whole career and he couldn't coach in the Major Leagues for almost a decade, he's kept this persona as some lovable, goofy guy alive. He's goofy because one time he came out to the dugout after he got ejected in fake mustache and glasses disguise 12 years ago.

Today Valentine finally reached his boiling point, flipping out on Glenn Ordway and Michael Holley on WEEI and demanding an apology because they mentioned an article that said he was late to the clubhouse.

He does his best teenage girl impression, calling the Oakland Coliseum "stupid," saying the clubhouse reporters are "incompetent people," and throwing Joe Maddon under the bus for getting to 7 o'clock games at 4 o'clock for some reason, among others. He did stop short of calling anyone a "doodyhead" though.

In all fairness, Valentine has had a really awful year and probably did the best he could entering a clubhouse in shambles. Still, he deserves his share of the blame for poorly managing and for not trying a little harder to win over a passionate fanbase and a prickly media.

For Bobby V, he knows the end is near. And this is apparently how you act when you know you have nothing to lose.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

2012 NFL Power Rankings: First Edition

With the 2012 NFL season kicking off tomorrow night in the Meadowlands, it's time to break out version one of this year's NFL Power Rankings, after a one year hiatus. These rankings are based purely on speculation, similar to the preseason college Top 25 poll, and will surely look a lot different next week.

1. New York Giants
The Super Bowl Champions lost Mario Manningham and Brandon Jacobs through free agency, and two tight ends to injury, but added a running back and receiver in the draft and signed Martellus Bennett away from Dallas.

2. New England Patriots
The Pats loaded up on defense in the draft, improving an already Super Bowl caliber team.

3. Green Bay Packers
The best team in the league for most of the season, the Packers played the worst game of the year in the playoffs against the Giants. One of the favorites to win it all this year, with the late addition of Cedric Benson being particularly promising.

4. Houston Texans
Even with Andre Johnson out most of the year and Matt Schaub out through the end of the season and playoffs, the Texans were one of the most dangerous teams in football in 2011.

5. Baltimore Ravens
The whole gang is back together but will it be enough to get them over the AFC Championship Game hump?

6. Denver Broncos
Add Peyton Manning to a team with a good running game and a great defense then watch what happens when you have someone who can actually throw the ball to Denver’s receivers.

7. San Francisco 49ers
Using the same formula the 49ers are a good bet to win the West and go deep in the playoffs again. With new WR weapons in Manningham and Randy Moss, Alex Smith might have more targets than just Vernon Davis, which could mean a Super Bowl berth for the ‘9ers.

8. Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles will probably start playing like the “Dream Team” this year… or else it might be Andy Reid’s last in Philadelphia.

9. Chicago Bears
The addition of Brandon Marshall and a healthy Matt Forte should produce a really scary offense for opponents of the Bears, as long as the offensive line gives Jay Cutler enough time for find his targets.

10. Pittsburgh Steelers
A new offensive coordinator and no movement regarding Mike Wallace brings concerns about Pittsburgh’s chances, especially in a tough division with Baltimore and Cincinnati.