Monday, April 30, 2007

Monday Headlines

TROUBLE IN T.O, PART II

A couple weeks ago I said that the Toronto Raptors were in big trouble after drawing the New Jersey Nets in the first round of the NBA playoffs. And now I've got a confession to make...

...I was right.

Game's 3 and 4 of the series were so lopsided they were basically unwatchable (both New Jersey wins, 102-89 and 102-81). And as bad as those scores sound, they are pretty flattering. In Game 4 yesterday Toronto was down by 30 points or more for most of the game. They held a lead for exactly 15 seconds, the Raptors made their first shot and the Nets promptly game back down the floor and tied it.

Game over.

The Raptors have looked lost, disorganized, shell-shocked, confused, unenergetic. Not good things to be in the playoffs. Coach of the Year Sam Mitchell has been unable to adjust as things have evolved in the series.

This year will be in 'win' for the Raptors regardless of the outcome of this series, but it sure would have been nice if they had been a little bit more competitive.


SPORTS NERDS REJOICE

The NFL Draft was held on Saturday and it was so long that not even I could watch the whole first round (I put in about 4 or 5 hours on Saturday and then another 1 or 2 on Sunday). They set a record for the longest first round in history, over 6 hours. But that's not as bad as it sounds, if all 32 teams had taken their full 15 minutes the first round alone (their are 7 rounds) would have lasted 8 hours.

Great coverage by the NFL Network of the first 2 rounds on Saturday and rounds 3-7 on Sunday. Both Rich Eisen and Mike Mayock were on camera for over 8 hours both Saturday and Sunday - and I'm not sure how they remained upright and remained on speaking terms.

Terrible job by TSN, they broadcast ESPN's feed for about an hour or so before switching over to something else. If I didn't get the NFL Network I would have been very upset.

But hey, I'm a sports nerd.


WELCOME TO NBC ON TSN

Was TSN bought out by NBC? Did I miss a memo?

So why then when I switch to TSN to watch the Sharks-Red Wings series on Saturday and the Sabres-Rangers series on Sunday do I get the NBC feed? I know for a fact that TSN had their own crew at both of those series for the games during the week. So then NBC has exclusive rights for weekend afternoon games? I'd rather clean my house than listen to the NBC broadcaster's - which is what I did. Welcome to the NHL, The Coolest Game on Earth.

I will never, ever understand why the NHL continues to cater to a market that just straight-up doesn't care about hockey. How about catering to the people that actually keep this game going.

I won't lie to you, I'm much more interested in the NBA playoffs than the NHL playoffs these days.


MEDIOCRITY ISN'T WHAT IT USED TO BE

Over the weekend the Saskatchewan Roughriders announced that they had exceeded the CFL's salary cap by over a million dollars. Now if that salary cap had actually been enforced (don't you just love the CFL) the Riders would have been penalized 3 million dollars and draft picks according to GM Eric Tillman.

Apparently a budget of 5 million dollars doesn't go as far as it used to. Last year had to be the most expensive 9-9 season in the history of sport - that's $555,555 per win.

I'm going to go out on a limb here - don't expect big things from the team this year. They weren't able to compete when the bent the rules (cheated), how are they going to be any better this year when their operating budget was cut almost in half?

I'm just saying.

Oh and in other Rider news the long awaited Code of Conduct is finally done. Only one aggravated sexual assault conviction and two aggravated assault charges too late.

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