I probably should have divided up like periods and done thirds, but as promised I waited until the Avalanche reached game 12, aka 25%ish, to file a report on how the NHL season is going. Twelve games. The season started in early January so my math would have the Avalanche playing game 12 on February 4th. Nope – make that February 14th.
Why the delay? COVID. Five games postponed. I guess since they played Game 12 on Valentine’s Day COVID now stands for Colorado Valentine’s Isolation Day.
On another aspect, isolation made sense. The morning temperature on V-Day was a whopping -6˚F at my place. Deep freeze people, deep freeze. COVID has thrown the whole schedule into a blizzard. I wish it were a Dairy Queen one which actually sounds kind of good and my local DQ stays open until midnight and is the size of a Culver’s which is crazy, but alas that is a negative. How is the schedule playing out you ask? Bwa, Ha and Ha. The Vancouver Canucks have played 18 games, the Avalanche 12. The New Jersey Devils? 9.
I am wrong. A lot. My gambling account this season is a reminder of how wrong I can be. I occasionally get things right, as well. But, oh man, I’m wrong all the time when it comes to sports. When you drone about nothing as much as I do, i’ts bound to happen. With the football season ending a couple nights ago, I was left with the sadness that, not only did I no longer have a reason to get spectacularly drunk on Sundays, but that I had to come to terms with what was probably my worst season in terms of prognosticating and gambling.
Part of it was the fact that i’ve spent the better part of six months with a broken brain. Full stop, not looking for sympathy. I have been able to function as a human being, albeit with medication and therapy. It is hard to focus on football when you spend every waking moment of your life thinking that your entire world is crumbling around you.
The other part of it is that I just can’t throw myself into football like I used to. As Blink 182 opined two decades ago, “I guess this is growing up.”
Life just takes up too much time. Family, friends, a society imploding into itself like a neutron star. Oh, and the whole Covid thing. I got Covid pretty bad midway through the season. 2020 was a shitty year for damn near everyone. I was no exception. So it’s time for me to take some L’s and talk about the few things I got right, and all the stuff I got wrong about the 2020 NFL season.
February 7, 2021- It’s midway through the first quarter of Super Bowl LV, and in his suite, Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt is already celebrating. His team, the expected favorite for tonight’s game, has just taken a 3-0 lead over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Surely, the Chiefs would be winning their second consecutive Super Bowl and he would be returning to Kansas City with the Lombardi Trophy and ready to bask in the praise the city would throw his way.
If you’re like me and you wait until the dust has settled before deep-diving into prop bets for the Super Bowl, you my friend are in luck. I have discovered some choice prop bets for Super Sunday and will simply give you the winners. All you have to do is donate some of your winnings, let’s call it a bet-tithing, to your favorite comic so they can do something positive with it. Me? I’ll be donating to Matt Drufke. Why? Because he’s a good guy and I know any money given to him will be going for something noble. Perhaps a college fund for his boys. Maybe a new re-fill for his waterbed. Or he could just blow it on a fur-lined mic.
As for the game, it’s the Chiefs vs the Buccaneers. In spite of their victory last year and their refusal to change their name or stop that insipid tomahawk chop, I will be very reluctantly rooting for them. It’s not the Buccaneers team as a whole that’s so disturbing, in fact I’d love the see former Bronco Shaq Barrett dismantle the QB machine known as Mahomey. It’s Brady. Tom Brady has been in nearly 25% of all Super Bowls. His teams are 6-3. That’s enough. He needs to lose and lose badly. I don’t bet on the game itself. It ruins the enjoyment of it for me. Therefore, I think I’ll hit the prop (proposition or ‘side’ bet) bets. Let’s take a quick look at a few of them now.
How Many Commercials will have a dog in them? This is an over-under bet and sits at 4.5. Since a half-dog is pretty much impossible let alone gross, take the over. Biden is in office now so dogs are front page news.
Will there be a COVID vaccine commercial? A ‘no’ means you need to bet 160 to win a 100. However, it’s likely there will not be one specifically about the actual vaccine.
Super Bowl Gatorade shower color? No, it’s not a weird new shower product, it’s about what color the liquid is when it’s poured onto the winning coach. Since the Chiefs will win, I’d go with red/pink. It’s at +300, so $100 wins you $300.
Total TD passes by Mahomes? The over-under is set at 2.5. Over means you need to drop 150 to win a 100. I’d do that.
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.
It’s the Divisional Round 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.
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?
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.
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.
It’s Wild Card 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.