Twitter wins deal for NFL’s Thursday Night Streaming Rights

April 5, 2016 – 8:30 am by Will DeWitt

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Roger Goodell went to Twitter early Tuesday morning to announce that the NFL has found a suitor to stream its Thursday night games — Twitter.

Twitter beat out a number of competitors including Facebook, Amazon, and Verizon for the 10-game deal that completes the league’s “Tri-Cast” distribution model of broadcast, cable and now digital.

According to a press release from the NFL: “Twitter will provide free, live streaming video of Thursday Night Football without authentication to the over 800 Million registered and non-registered users worldwide on the Twitter platform on mobile phones, tablets, PCs and connected TVs.” Read the rest of this entry »

Canada shut out of Stanley Cup Playoffs

March 31, 2016 – 12:16 am by Hickey

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Woe, Canada.

While many Americans are hanging on to their typical presidential election year promise to flee for the Great White North should such-and-such candidate be elected, they may want to reconsider. No one up there seems to know how to play hockey.

With the Flyers beating the Capitals on Wednesday night, Philadelphia mathematically eliminated Ottawa from the playoff race. This means this season will be the first since 1969-70 that no team of Canucks (or Maple Leafs, or Canadiens, or Senators, or Jets, or Flames, or Oilers, or even Nordiques) will be in the NHL postseason.

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How to Talk About Matt Bush in 2016

March 28, 2016 – 6:08 pm by McD

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This is not a Matt Bush post. I, like many Padres fans, have strong feelings when I hear his name. It’s hard not to when the number one overall pick by the San Diego Padres in the 2004 draft spent most of his time in baseball getting arrested for assaulting high school lacrosse players while yelling “I’m Matt f–king Bush!,” crying uncontrollably while being arrested for his second DUI, and, of course, going to jail for three years for his third DUI — during which he ran over a 72-year-old man’s head. The man only survived because he was wearing a motorcycle helmet.

TL;DR version – Matt Bush has spent most of his adult life being a total scumbag on virtually all levels and screwing up a truly incredible gift for baseball. I do not bring up his name unless I have a really good reason.

This is also not a 2004 Major League Baseball Draft post. I’m not going to spend much time lamenting the Padres’ myriad mistakes that year. Let me sum up: The Padres passed on future Hall-of-Famer Justin Verlander (No. 2 to the Tigers), Stephen Drew, Jered Weaver, Homer Bailey, and even Huston Street to draft a hometown shortstop. It’s unclear if the Padres did much research on Bush because a handful of phone calls would surely have revealed his character issues. Being a fan of the San Diego Padres is truly a cross to bear a lot of the time.

Anyway, this isn’t (technically) a Matt Bush post. He did make a, by all accounts, successful spring training debut for the Texas Rangers last week. And, of course, every article about his outing summarized his life and career prior to last week. You know, because it’s news when a one of the biggest draft busts in recent history throws two innings in spring training for his fourth MLB franchise.

This seriously isn’t about Matt Bush. It’s about how he’s being covered in his latest attempt to play professional baseball.

Dave Schoenfield wrote what was otherwise a pretty standard write-up of Bush’s spring training appearance for the Rangers. He hit all the same notes about Bush’s legal and personal struggles, quotes from the coaches and teammates about how Bush is doing and saying all the right things, and mentioning that he’s trying to make his life right. Nothing too different from the other pieces from other media outlets.

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Report: Former Baltimore Raven Terrence Cody sentenced to nine months for starving dog to death

March 24, 2016 – 1:07 pm by Will DeWitt

 

Terrence Cody

According to The Baltimore Sun, former Ravens defensive tackle Terrence Cody was sentenced Thursday to nine months in the Baltimore County detention center on charges of animal cruelty.

In November, he was convicted of multiple misdemeanors in connection with the death of his dog Taz, a Canary mastiff, that prosecutors said starved to death.

During the trial in November, Prosecutor Adam Lippe told Judge Judith C. Ensor that “This dog died a horrible, miserable death because of the conduct of both of these defendants.”

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Baseball Diplomacy: Hope Comes to Cuba Amid Painful History

March 23, 2016 – 5:20 pm by McD

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When Richard Yates’ Revolutionary Road was published in 1961, many critics and readers dismissed it as yet another indictment of the American suburbs, a theme which even then had become trite (amazing how some things don’t change). For years, the best book of Yates’ career was essentially ignored, isolated to a corner of the literary community.

When Revolutionary Road began to gain popularity again recently, it was often read as more than just a complaint about suburban conformity. In the story, the Wheelers (April and Frank), yearn to break out of their house-kids-job lifestyle and live more exotic, interesting lives. They begin to work towards changing their lives, alternating between positive steps and pure self-destruction–the common literary foibles of mankind. And in the end, their dilemma becomes one of choosing “safe” lives and that safety representing desperation and death.

A baseball game took place in Cuba on Tuesday between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Cuban National Team. It was the first game of its kind since 1999, when the Orioles made a similar trip.

The game, and the attendant diplomacy by President Obama that it represented, have been praised as a “landmark” game, as “baseball diplomacy,” and even a chance to maintain some sense of “normalcy” in the face of the terrorist attacks in Brussels.

But since this is Cuba, even the mention of the island dictatorship brought back the old ghosts of communism and Cubans escaping the island for a better life in America. Ted Cruz wrote Obama’s diplomacy will “legitimize the corrupt and oppressive Castro regime with his presence on the island.” ESPN’s Dan LeBatard, in an emotional column titled “‘Historic’ game in Cuba ignores the pain so many people endured,” called the trip and the game “another loss….As if the Cubans who fled to this country haven’t already felt enough of those losses over the decades.”

LeBatard, the son and grandson of Cuban refugees, recounts the pain and suffering endured by his family (and millions of other Cubans) at the hands of the Castros over the past 50-plus years. It is a very personal, heart-wrenching story that is as excellent an explanation of why change in Cuba is so important.

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Sweet 16 field proves football money matters even in hoops

March 21, 2016 – 1:10 am by Hickey

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Even in March, college football matters when it comes to advancing in the men’s basketball tournament. Not being good at football, of course, or Kansas wouldn’t have even made the CBI. But having access to the revenue produced by it is a game-changer that makes a difference in powering power programs past their mid-major brethren.

Of the programs to advance to this year’s Sweet 16, only two don’t play football in a Power 5 conference — Villanova, which plays at the FCS level, and Gonzaga, which hasn’t had a team since the 1941 season. (The sport was dropped due to a lack of male students in World War II, meaning Gonzaga can legitimately blame Hitler for its lack of a team).

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It takes Donald Trump to make Bill Belichick smile

March 7, 2016 – 7:22 pm by Hickey

Nobody likes the New England Patriots, at least outside of their natural constituency of Boston bonerboys the worst kind of bandwagon jumpers who have also been authentic Golden State Warriors fans since 2015. (They’d probably tell you they only root for teams not named for the city they play in, but “broad geographic areas.”)

There are dozens of reasons to hate the Pats, but they’ve never been more pronounced than the present as it has become clear that the unholy trinity atop the organization — owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady — are a bunch of Donald Trump fanboys.

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Indiana’s Tom Crean is the Big Ten coach of the year, and deservedly so

March 7, 2016 – 2:01 pm by Will DeWitt

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Less than 24 hours after the Indiana Hoosiers finished the Big Ten season with a 15-3 record, it was announced that head coach Tom Crean won the Associated Press’ Big Ten coach of the year award.

Some clamored that Wisconsin’s Greg Gard should win the award as he led the Badgers to a 12-6 conference record after the departure of Bo Ryan. However, it was Crean who won, and he deserves every bit of it.

Last year, Indiana fell apart down the stretch as the Hoosiers lost six out of their last 10 regular season games. Add in a few incidents with players off the court over the past year, and it looked as if Crean was losing control over his team.

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