NFL Mailbag – Conference Championship Weekend!

NFL Mailbag – Conference Championship Weekend!

It’s the best football weekend of the year, conference championship weekend baby! As always, Matt Drufke- who watches none of the games- has so many questions. Fortunately, Fancy Boys Football experts Brendan Andreasen and Jack Baker do and are usually happy to answer some of them. Let’s mailbag.

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Lace Them Up – The 2021 NHL Season Preview

Apparently the Zambonis have all been finally fixed and are able to smooth the ice so the NHL can begin their season January 13th. Luckily the 13th is not a Friday, but it may as well be. Yeah I know, it’s not the Zambonis’ fault they haven’t started the season. It was NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman’s fault. Fine, it was COVID… or how best to navigate COVID. But, Bettman is such an awful commissioner he’s always the person to point at for NHL problems.

Last year, as you may recall it since the season just ended in the middle of September, the Tampa Bay Lightning took home Lord Stanley’s Cup. It’s so 2020 to have a team that never has any ice outside of its arena claim the Cup.

Yeah, I know. That was so last Fall. So who’s going to hoist the Cup this year… whenever the season ends given the specter of COVID? The season is slated for 56 games, roughly 2/3rds of a normal season. But for the NHL, 56 games is enough to determine who should make the playoffs and who shouldn’t since nearly every team makes the playoffs anyway. A full 16 out of 31 teams make the playoffs. Next year it’ll be a full 50% as the Seattle Kraken are coming. Damn it I love that name.

A side note: before we get into the deep chasms of ice and hand out predictions easier than a dirty carny hands out tainted sno-cones, we have a couple rule changes to go over.

Number 1 – Offsides is now determined to not occur until the offensive players last skate completely crosses the blue line. Ergo, if a skater’s foot is in the air, but still behind or above the line when the puck completely crosses the blue line, he is onside. I am dubbing this the “phantom foot” as I can envision a lot of extended time being allotted while the NHL replay monitors in Toronto spend minutes drinking Labatt’s and deciding if the foot was or wasn’t over as it hovers in frozen time threatening to cross it.

Number 2 – the Colorado Avalanche are allowed to play with an extra attacker the entire season.

Fine, the second one doesn’t exist. It should though. It’s only fair as their goalie situation is still as shaky as spring pond hockey. That’s the reason why they didn’t make it to the final and soundly whip that team from the south. Should I go on with my predictions? Isn’t that enough?

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And All That Jazz: the Style and Grace of Andre Drummond

And All That Jazz: the Style and Grace of Andre Drummond

If you’re not super-familiar with the NBA or basketball in general, or maybe you’re just a casual fan, you may be inclined to think that professional players should be great at most aspects of the game. Then you really watch a game and notice that some players are just not suited for some specific jobs on the court. Take for instance the job of the Center. He’s basically there to grab rebounds, win tipoffs, and get high percentage shots like dunks and put-backs after misses. So when a play collapses and the Center is out there on an island, what is he to do? Andre Drummond, two-time all star of the Cleveland Cavaliers, answered for us. What transpired was a thing of beauty.

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Friday Five: Special 2020 Wrap-Up Edition!

Friday Five: Special 2020 Wrap-Up Edition!

2020 was, to put it mildly, a weird year.

COVID affected every aspect of our lives, including the art we consumed and, perhaps more importantly, how we consume it. We couldn’t go to the movie theater. Many artists we releasing their “quarantine albums”. Most shows and movies had to stop production for some period of time. Sports went away and then came back under weird conditions.

But that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great year for the arts. It was just… different.

Because of this, we scrapped our plans to write the “Best Of” articles that usually appear in magazines and websites. We’re bringing back the Friday Five. We asked our writers and guest contributors to list their five favorite pieces of consumed media from the last year.

Here is what The Fancy Boys loved about 2020.

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On Being a Sports Fan

If one were to ask me, I’d say I am a casual fan of many teams – if one were to define ‘casual’ as being one who has at least enough in their tool belt of fandom to whip out the right tool for the job for discussion. I cannot recite stats. I cannot pull team folklore and craziness out of my ass and relate it to some event in a personal manner.

Nor do I want to do it.

That sort of fandom to me is a tad excessive as well as obsessive and I can see why athletes get a little wary of those types – the adults who wear a guy’s jersey and then ask for an autograph. In fact, I will take it a step further – wearing anyone’s jersey seems a bit excessive. You’re not them, that’s not your name on the back. Why are you wearing someone else’s name on your back? Why are you spending so much time and effort following a team as if you are a part of the team? And why are you all dressing up like this clown?


Here’s a little advice Bears fans – don’t. Ditka never liked you. Ever.

WHY ARE YOU USING THE WORD ‘WE?’

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2021 NBA Preview: 30 Guys To Watch

2021 NBA Preview: 30 Guys To Watch

Imagine being a Bulls fan in your 30s. The glory days came and went long before Hi-Def TV, DVR, and handheld-miracle supercomputers. The name Derrick Rose probably elicits more trauma than fondness, and that’s it. That’s all you know since childhood. Pain. But what if you could appreciate the league from a different perspective? Instead of basketball being a causeway between football pain and baseball pain, why not enjoy the beauty of the game through the players that make any night something special? I’m here to help. This isn’t going to be a list of stars. You know who LeBron James and Kevin Durant are. You know they’re worth watching. This is a list of 30 players, one per team, that deserve some attention this season.

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