Thanks for former champ turned chump Matt Campbell for this:
RA Dickey is the man. As was Wakefield.
February 26, 2013
So yesterday Tom Brady signed a 3 year extension with the Patriots, guaranteeing that he will be in New England for his entire career.
1st things first- Brady is the man. Just the coolest dude ever. He knows a couple million means literally nothing to him (and his bread-winning wife) and he doesn’t have the ego that most athletes have, where they think their contract directly correlates to how good they are. For example, Drew Brees recently held out for top dollar because he believes he is the top QB in the league and wanted to be paid that way. Brady doesn’t need a contract or a piece of paper telling him this. (Something Flacco apparently DOES need.) Keep in mind this is the 2nd time Brady has re-structured his contract to allow the team to be able to spend the money somewhere else. It’s refreshing seeing an athlete not only SAY he wants to win, but actually walking the walk and taking the pay cut for the betterment of the team.
Now, the consensus seems to be that the money saved from this paycut Brady is taking is going to go to complete a deal with Wes Welker. There were rumors yesterday about the Pats possibly offering Wes a 5 year, $40 Million deal.
WTF????? Really? Ummm I do want him back, but not for 5 freakin years. He is 31 right now. Yes I know the style of his play may allow him to play longer than others at his position, but still, 3 year max contract is what I was thinking. Furthermore, some of that money freed up by Brady needs to go to defense! AND even if the Pats DO want to spend all that money on a free agent WR, go get Mike freakin Wallace for 5 years $40 Mil!!! I’d much rather have him that Wes for the next 5 years. Dudes a burner, a play maker, a game changer. Oh and he is only 26 years old. The prime of his career. Check out his speed here:
If the Pats end up signing Wes for 5 years and $40 Mill I will be sorely disappointed with the Kraft family. Listen, Brady is the man, but he is a QB, a football player, an athlete. It’s not his job to construct a roster. I know he is close friends with Welker, so I wouldn’t be shocked if there was a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ between Kraft and Brady that some of the $ Brady gave up will go to Welker, but I just don’t see the point of giving it ALL to him.
In any case, this makes for a pretty exciting few weeks. NFL off season talk is awesome.
February 25, 2013
The past few Bruin’s seasons have been fun to watch, especially for those fans that followed the team during the dark, dark Mike O‘Connell era (which mercifully ended in 2006.) Most of the success from the current Peter Chiarelli era is due to his hiring of defensive-minded coach Claude Julien and the risk he took on Tim Thomas, which we all know paid off in a big, big way.
On June 24th, 2006 Chiarelli somehow flipped Andrew Raycroft for Tuukka Rask, who was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the first round of the ‘05 draft. At the time they thought some dude named Justin Pogge (LOL) was their goaltender of the future, despite the fact that 20 year old Rask was named top goalie of the 2005 World Juniors.
Since then, Thomas and Tuukka have shared the net for the Bruins and completely dominated. Although Thomas was always the clear #1, an injury in the 2009-10 season opened the door for Rask to get extended playing time. That season he started 45 games in the regular season and led the entire NHL in both Goals Against Average (1.97) and Save Percentage (.931)
That was the year the Bruins choked away the 3-0 series lead vs. the Flyers in the 2nd round of the playoffs. Rask himself didn’t play awful, but he certainly didn’t win any games for the Bruins either. It’s important to remember he out-dueled Vezina winner Ryan Miller in the first round that year, before the collapse. The Bruins coaching staff felt as if Tuukka had earned the starting nod and in the first game of the next season, in Prague, Rask got the call over Thomas. However, Thomas played out of his mind in October of 2010, took his job back from Rask almost immediately, & never looked back on his way the best season all time by a goaltender (which of course ended with a Stanley Cup and Conn Smyth trophy win.)
Rask’s patience paid off again, however, when in the Summer of 2012 Thomas decided to go AWOL and retreated to a bunker in Colorado to pound Chik-Fil-A sandwiches or something. The Bruins and Rask agreed to a 1 year deal worth $3.5 Million for this current 2013 shortened season. This is widely thought to be a “prove it” contract, which I always love because it means the player believes in himself and realizes contracts are earned, not given.
It is fair to say the concern the Bruins have with locking up Rask long term is a history of groin issues, which is NOT something a goalie ever wants to deal with. They want to see Rask carry the load for a full season, and perform in the playoffs before committing to him.
My opinion is that Rask has done enough this season to command a long term contract. Chiarelli has a long history of signing players to extensions mid-season, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see this happen with Rask any day now.
This season Rask is 9-1-2 in the 12 games he has started. He again has that 1.97 GAA to go along with a .925 save percentage. The Bruins PowerPlay is top in the league, and everyone knows your best penalty killer has to be your goalie. Most importantly, Rask passes the eyeball test on a nightly basis. He is confident in net and his teammates trust him. His overall attitude is admirable- throughout the years he could have requested a trade, he could have started problems in the locker-room, but by all accounts he is a great teammate and an extremely competitive guy, which is something I really like about him. Next time he gets scored on watch how pissed he gets. This is the type of guy I want on my side.
Now, the question is, what type of contract should the Bruins extend to Rask? Some important things to consider are his age- Rask is about a week away from turning 26- and the fact that the Bruins drafted 19 year old Malcolm Subban in the 1st round of this past year’s draft.
Here are highest paid goalies in the league, their age and salary cap hits:
- Pekka Rinne (30) 7 years @ $7 Million
- Henrik Lundqvist (30) 6 years @ $6.88 Million
- Carey Price (25) 6 years @ $6.5 Million
- Cam Ward (28) 6 years @ $6.3 Million
- Ryan Miller (32) 5 years @$6.25 Million
Corey Schneider is commonly compared to Rask & this past off season the Canucks signed him to a 3 year, $12 Million deal. I think that's way too low for Rask. I'm looking at the Carey Price 6 Year, $39 Million deal and thinking Rask commands something in that neighborhood.
I would expect the Bruins to offer Rask a competitive deal, and Rask seems like the guy that may not be looking for top dollar, as long as he is getting paid fairly and playing for a contender in a good situation, which is obviously the case in Boston. I especially think he can be convinced to take lesser money so that there is more cap space available for the rest of the team. After-all, the Bruins play great TEAM defense and help the goaltender out a lot more than some other teams do.
My guess is Chiarelli extends a 6 year, $33 Million offer to Rask. It makes sense because by the end of this contract the Bruins would know what they have in Subban, and Rask would be 32- old enough to still be in his prime and possibly be dealt or even extended for 3-4 more years. Do not forget, Chiarelli signed Thomas to a 4 year contract when he was 34 years old, so he clearly is not afraid of aging goaltenders. Rask would probably accept this deal as well; 6 years is a long time to have a guaranteed salary and he would be paid as a top 5 goalie in the league.
We will see what happens but I am confident Chiarelli both should and will lock up Tuukka before the season is over, maybe he will even do it as a birthday present to Rask who turns 26 on March 10.
February 23, 2013
February 13, 2013
You are being forced to spend the next 10 years of your life in a basement. After those 10 years, you will receive $10 million. Your basement comes fully furnished with a good bed, a sink, a toilet, a shower, and a trash chute. You are given a bonus of 30 points to spend on items/amenities you can take with you to your basement.
Bonus: If you half your $10 million to just $5 million, you will receive 35 points to spend. If you you reduce your payout to $0, you can spend 40 points.
I'd take the $10mill when I got out and spend the 30 points on:
TV (7)- Easy choice here. 52" TV with all cable channels AND premium packages? Awesome. I can watch all sporting events, I can listen to music through the music channels, and I can watch movies on the premium channels.
Kitchen (6)- Really what it comes down to is do you want your own fully functional kitchen or would you prefer Chef's to send food every day. Well, it's going to be pretty boring for 10 years so I would definetly pick the fully equipped kitchen with all ingredients. With unlimited time and resources, I'd be making some pretty amazing and delicious stuff.
Gym (5)- Another very easy choice. I'd come out of this 10 year period jacked and in amazing shape.
Booze (5)- This was the last item I picked. Kept going back and forth on if I wanted the temptation of alcohol around for 10 years. Ultimately, I think the unlimited booze is going to come in a lot of handy & I can't watch Bruin's playoff games without some sort of alcohol to calm me down. As I write this is is clear to me that NOT choosing booze is a stupid decision.
Hygiene Products (3)- Easy choice. No way I want to hang around 10 years with no soap and no toothpaste.
Medical Care (2)- This is more of a preventative choice. I just think medical care for 2 points is a good way to enure I stay alive during these 10 years. It would suck to somehow get the flu or something and die because you didnt want to spend 2 points on medical care.
Skylight (2)- Oh yea. I think sunlight for a few hours a day would be necessary for me to make it through the 10 years. Can people even live without sunlight for 10 years? I'm guessing yes but I'm sure there would be some pretty bad side effects.
Other items I considered:
I really thought hard about using 5 extra points and only taking $5mil after 10 years. I can't blame anyone who chooses that option. (Although I think anyone who takes 10 extra points and NO prize money is an idiot.)
Stunningly attractive 18 year old- I was never close to choosing this. 18 points? Is that serious? No thanks. Sure the 18 year may sleep with you on demand but can you imagine being stuck in a basement for 10 years with ANY chick? Nope. (the one exception here would be Ms. Nobody wins on the blue. I could handle that. Maybe not for 18 points though.)
Workshop- This is an interesting one because a work shop with all supplies and all tools would be pretty phenomenal. Not my cup of tea but I still almost picked it
Internet- 16 points is just too much for the internet. Even for me, someone who cannot live without fantasy football.... even I cant spend 16 on the internet.
Surround sound system with all music- This is an awesome choice, but like I said earlier that TV option will have dozens of music channels and that would suffice for me.
Pool Table- 1 point is cheap and I've always wanted to be nasty at pool.
February 3, 2013
Last year I incorrectly picked the Patriots to beat the Giants.....this year my favorite team isn't playing so I can look at it totally objectively.
-The Ravens look like a team of destiny. Ray Lewis' last year has a lot to do with it. 2 road victories in Denver and NE.
-Flacco has also looked superb, he hasn't thrown a pick yet in the playoffs.
That being said, I think the 1 week layoff was a big momentum killer for the Ravens.
The 49ers are bigger, stronger, and just better. It really is going to be a close game but I think the 49ers score a defensive TD and of course, my boy CK Colin Kapernick is going to be too dynamic to handle for the Ravens. It's something like his 12th NFL start and the dude is about to win the Super Bowl MVP. That's Tom Brady-esque circa 2001. Lets do it 49ers! (Even though I like John way more than Jim, obviously)
San Francisco 49ers- 35
Baltimore Ravens- 31
Colin Kapernick MVP