Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Order of Operations: Fire at the Architectural Institute

Here it is: the list of ten teams I will be interested in watching as the season progresses, in order of their importance. This list will change as this season progresses, injuries pile up and trades rock the boat. Remember two things: I don't care if the team is bad if they are fun to watch and defense does count in some cases. This week is an overall season ideal, so I am going to talk about the teams I like the most, in a way. You can bet We'll be covering teams in the top ten playing one another, when it happens. Knowing our history with these promises, you might lose that bet.

1) Houston-- Let's see, same offense with a further developing Carl Landry, adds Ron Artest and become a defensively brilliant team? OK, I'm in.

2) Boston-- They're my team man.

3) New Orleans-- I distrust David West to this day, despite his success. If he falters, this team will tumble. But the top ten (and this blog overall) honors Chris Paul as the architect of brilliance.

4) Toronto-- RUN BOSH RUN.

5) Portland (come January)-- I already love this team. Developing Oden? Only makes me want them more.

6) Orlando-- Weird how they are even on this list since I hate Florida. Can't help it, they are exciting. I love Dwight, but there's a lot to this team night after night.

7) Golden State (Come Monta-time)-- Nellyball makes me happy despite the terrible defense and inability to win against faster, more talented teams due to that terrible defense.

8) Philly-- They will be fun to watch, but they are overrated. I believe this.

9) Atlanta-- No way they are lower than 10th, Sports Illustrated. Those dudes are fucking ATHLETES. They can make the playoffs, and I am excited to see it.

10) Los Angeles (Lakers)-- How good are they? Is Bynum "back?" Dunno, but they are going to run and run well. This equals fun.

Honorable mention(s): Miami and New York, but only becuase I got a ticket to the Knicks opener.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Good news - Hooray!

This post serves many purposes: 1) It makes me feel good. You don't know how important that is. 2) It's positive. As positive as I can be without involving some kind of blood test. C) I haven't written about anything in a while. See #s 1 AND 2.

First off, the Avalanche. They've won 5 in a row after starting the season off 0-3. This is a first for the Pretzel Factory: for whatever reason (lack of knowledge, lack of coverage, lack of enthusiasm, lack of ... well, anything, really), we here have not written about hockey. Ever. And that's a goddamn shame, along the lines of Yvette from Clue never getting her due. Man, she was hot.
Fantastic cleavage. Fantastic.

So, cheers, Avs. Peter Budaj has been solid in goal (although that can likely fall apart soon), Ryan Smyth has been scoring some of his patented pain-in-the-ass goals, Milan Hejduk has been on fucking fire, and the blue liners have been good enough. It's early, and they're going to have to play above their heads all year, but the early output looks promising. Too bad I don't have fucking Versus. God damn Time Warner.

Secondly, the Colorado State fucking Rams. I just ordered a CSU shirt today. Gold, Large, normal block lettering. I've been reluctant to wear my college's colors because ... well, they've sucked, and I'm fat and almost 30. But after squeezing by the inept San Diego State Aztecs 38-34 this weekend, the Rammies are 4-4 and 2-2 in conference. They've got BYU coming up, but after that they've got Air Force, New Mexico and Wyoming; two of those three are very winnable, and if they can get a few breaks against AF, all three. If they take all three, they're a bowl team since the Mountain West has been the best non-BCS conference all year long, bar none. So that's something to hope for, as long as hope is available.

Thirdly, the Broncos didn't lose! They didn't play, but still ... it's a start. The Chargers got all wickered up in they knickers in London, and the Donkeys are a game and a half up in the division almost halfway through the year. Look, I'm not going to sugarcoat it - they're not good. They should be a wildcard team, at best. But when life gives you your neighbors' piss and a free bag of sugar, you make lemonade. So I will.

Fourthly, the Nuggets ... well, I'm not going to talk about the Nuggets. I had some friends over, made a sweet sausage Strata, wolfed down some cannolis, drank some wine and some PBR - I've got a good buzz going. Please don't make me ruin it by thinking about the inevitable trade of A.I. Please. Please. Thanks.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


NOTE: In one week, the NBA season tips off. In three days, I activate my NBA Season Pass. Sure, I didn't write about baseball all that much this year, and yes, I have been on hiatus for the past, oh, three or so months, but I'm (sort-of) back. Sorry to the five of you not looking for pictures of Jeter's head blowing up or tiny pictures of supermodels.

My breath was visible last night. This can only mean one thing: soon, friends, the men will play the basketballs. Oh sweet god, they will. Baseball is dealing the last of its deck, football is storming toward the middle of its parade and hockey trudges through the beginning of it's demanding schedule.

Oh, but basketball. The surreal and the simple, the speed and the grandeur, the squeaks and squabbles: they excite me more as each season approaches. While the sports world beckons the coming of post-season glory or the newest injuries to affect the championship bubble, the interest squares solely on the potentials for now:

Can the Celtics repeat without the elder bench-bound statesmen? --Not bloody likely.
Will Portland meet my heightened expectations this year or do I have to wait for them to realize that they need a damn point guard to win now? --Likely the latter.
How good are the Lakers? --Likely damn good.
Shall I predict a champion? --No, most likely.

The questions, the answers are all potential; likelihoods. In no other sport do the possibilities outweigh the probabilities like basketball. While baseball hinges on the statistical, football prays for the survivalist, and hockey awaits the unexpected, basketball moves with mood and functionality; a conduit into the soul of motion. Kobe and Manu's jumpers, Monta's speed and finesse, Oden's rawness in the post, Stuckey's likely transcendence, Garnett's waning hunger, CP3's first step: they all have the common allies and enemies. Each is contingent upon the flow of want in each night, each move, each thought. Left, right, jump, pass, no shot, take him, OH SHIT WHAT A PLAY, WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT-- it's all too quick to understand, but all too easy not to.

Now, more than ever, LeBron has to know his enemies and friends. Now, more than ever, New Jersey has to find a niche. Now, more than ever, the Knicks have to care about their physiques. Now more than ever, San Antonio, Dallas and Phoenix must fight clocks and aches. Now, more than ever, Philly must act like they belong. Now, more than ever, the middle of the pack must remember that all teams have weaknesses on any given night and that any team with a chance is dangerous. Sure, it's 82 games, but it's only one right now: opening night. Either 1.000 or .000.

And I can't wait to measure it all out. Who is relevant to whom and why? We shall see, friends. Each step is toward the goal-- even backwards and lateral. Each pass is calculated-- whether poorly or otherwise and each shot matters. I just can't wait to see which ones fall.

Friday, October 17, 2008

That Did Not Just Happen.

I was wrong. GOD HOW I WAS WRONG. Florida State Seminole, J.D. Drew.

Seriously, though. If this team loses in the next two games, I will be sad, yes, but I will not be angry. This was the greatest comeback I have ever seen in a playoff game. This includes 2004 and Dave Roberts against the Yankees. I mean, holy Jesus Lord.