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Mixed Bag: Yesterday’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Apr 29th, 2010 by Dan

Waiting to get in at Citizens Bank Park

No matter how poorly my teams did or didn’t do today, nothing can match my disappointment in the Washington Capitals for losing Game 7 of the first round of the playoffs. Way to suck, guys.

28 April

NPB
Yokohama BayStars (2) at Hiroshima Carp (1). These close losses are the most heartbreaking ones. The Carp fall to 11-16-0 in fifth. At least the Swallows lost too.

Rakuten Eagles (2) at Softbank Hawks (13). This team really has a hard time winning on non-Tanaka and non-Iwakuma days. They’ve got a similar record, but I find myself more disappointed in them, for some reason. 12-18-0 in fifth.

MLB
San Diego Padres (6) at Florida Marlins (4). Another disappointing loss to the Friars. Florida goes on to face the Nationals this weekend. The Fish are actually in fourth place now with their 11-11 record.

Washington Nationals (3) at Chicago Cubs (2). Luis Atilano’s second outing goes well too. The Nats are now in third place with their 12-10 record, half a game back.

New York Yankees (8) at Baltimore Orioles (3). We knew they couldn’t beat CC. They don’t disappoint. 4-17 in last.

Oakland Athletics (3) at Tampa Bay Rays (10). Another stellar performance by Tampa Bay. This team is on a real roll this month. 16-5 in first with the Yankees 2.5 behind.

Greatest Ice Hockey Game I’ve Ever Watched [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Mar 3rd, 2010 by Dan

The Olympic ice hockey gold medal match was a while ago (on Sunday) and it was a super-exciting game, even with its disappointing ending.

Despite owning the first seed coming into the competition, Canada was the clear favorite for the match thanks to its greater star power and skill and the added motivation of bringing home the gold on their own turf. Team USA put up a valiant effort with their squad, but just couldn’t get it done.

Canada put themselves up by one in the first period, establishing their game early when both teams were still playing extra strong, but surprisingly only added one more in the second when they had clear domination over the ice. The US squad was able to add one to their score, but were still trailing going into the third. Canada continued their domination in the third, letting up only every so often for the US squad to attack, but Team USA was unable to notch their second goal until they only had 24 seconds left thanks to an extra man on the ice.

The game was lost in the first OT when netminder Ryan Miller batted away a shot to the boards that was recovered by the Canadian offense and passed out to a strangely open Sidney Crosby who launched the puck between Miller’s legs.

Like the title says, it was the greatest hockey game I’ve ever seen, but it wasn’t without some very painful moments. The US team was definitely not as polished as the Canadians. All of our goals were a result of Roberto Luongo having an off night. He just couldn’t get his glove closed to reign in some of the rebounds and we made him pay for it. Canadian goals almost all came from sloppy US play. From Miller not properly clearing the puck in OT to the second period goal that resulted from a turnover in the corner, Team USA was just not as fundamentally sound as Canada. Worse still was our power play unit, which could barely hold the puck in Canadian territory and got maybe 4 shots on goal over three power plays.

Miller’s goaltending was fantastic as was our penalty kill, which successfully defended two (was it three? can’t remember) Canadian power plays. The offense wasn’t terrible, but they just couldn’t match the Canadian defenders.

It was a great game and it’s really got me pumped for the rest of the NHL season. Now I’m really hoping that it comes down to the Penguins and Capitals again at some point this year so that I can watch Crosby’s team get destroyed and lose their chance at the Stanley Cup.

EDIT: Totally forgot to mention! Spring Training MLB games start today! They’ve been going on in the NPB for a while now! Baseball is ALMOST BACK!

Go Saints! [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Feb 10th, 2010 by Dan

Trust me, it was more exciting than the score lets on.

Well I really didn’t care one way or the other, but the New Orleans Saints managed to come back from a 10 point deficit in the second half and put this Super Bowl away. It’s insane to see Peyton Manning play a game that’s short of perfect in any way, but his second half just didn’t stand up to the Saints offense.

I didn’t have much invested in the game, but my friend Kim is originally from New Orleans and she was in the state for a wedding rooting for them, so I had to join her in rooting for (luckily) the winning team. Of course, I missed out on being able to talk about the game with the guys around the cooler thanks to this ridiculous snow, but that’s a story for another day.

We’re at less than a month before baseball spring training starts in both leagues. I can barely contain my excitement, but, until then, I’ve been following the Capitals who are on a huge win streak somewhere in the neighborhood of 16 games or so. It’s great because I’ve got coworkers who are penguins fans and I get to tease them every time the Caps win and the Pens lose. I’ll even get to joke about the Pens losing to the Caps, assuming I’m ever able to get back into work after all this snow…

Super Bowl and Caps [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Feb 3rd, 2010 by Dan

BOOOORING

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably already know that the teams in the Super Bowl this year are the New Orleans Saints and the Indianapolis Colts. If you’re me, you probably already don’t care one bit about this. They’re teams I have no allegiance to and no interest in. The only minor reason why I might root for the Saints is because I have a friend who’s originally from Louisiana. Otherwise, don’t care.

In more awesome news, the Capitals are keeping the streak alive. If I’m not mistaken, the team is at 11 straight wins, which is just fantastic for a team that was near the bottom of the league in skill just a few years ago. The big test will come on 7 Feb. On that night the Capitals will go up against the Penguins who no doubt will be looking to knock them off of their perch. For my sake, please don’t lose Washington. I have a rep to protect at work and I’ve been riding high mocking my Penguin fan co-workers. A loss would only set me back.

Caps [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Jan 20th, 2010 by Dan

Alex Ovechkin - Washington Capitals

Just got home from the Capitals vs. Red Wings game down at the Verizon Center. It was my first time down there, so here are some impressions:

-I really hate DC’s Chinatown. It’s the most Americanized Chinatown I’ve ever seen and it’s an absolutely terrible venue for ice hockey/basketball. There’s just no character to it. It’s too corporate!
-The Verizon Center is pretty mediocre. Not a lot of character because it’s shared between the Caps and Wizards, but it filled up nicely.
-The Caps came out in the first period looking pretty sluggish, but they picked it up a bit in the second and third to come back from deficits and eventually pull ahead.
-No beer once the third period starts?! Really?!
-I miss Cornell ice hockey…

In keeping with the musical theme of the week, I’d also like to say a few words about music at sporting events. Your mileage may vary, but I’m putting all my support behind ice hockey as the best sport for music. Baseball keeps it way safe with classic tunes that are family friendly, basketball plays hip hop, R&B, and rap, and football, well I don’t really know what they play, but I bet it’s a mix between baseball and basketball. Ice hockey wins because they get to play a lot of alternative and classic rock. Great stuff.

Sorry for the brief update, but that’s what I’ve got today! It’s not baseball season, so be glad I’ve got anything to say about sports.

EDIT: Proofing errors corrected.

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