Sunday, February 12, 2012

Things that infuriated me: Week of Feb. 5

I think we've found a new weekly feature, wherein I complain about things that bothered me during the previous week! Sounds like fun. Let's get started.

1. Eli Manning's Hall of Fame candidacy

I love that in the span of a month, we went from nobody talking about whether Eli belonged in the Hall, to wondering if he did, to confirming that he was TOTALLY in. Um, what? Eli has basically built his Hall of Fame "candidacy" on eight playoff games, and the first Super Bowl was mostly a result of defense and magical helmet catches, not Eli. During the rest of his career, besides those eight games, he's been somewhere between mediocre and very good. He's never been one of the top three quarterbacks in the league, and usually he's been outside the top five. Suffice to say that if the Giants had lost one more game in the regular season this year, we wouldn't even be having this discussion. So let's drop it and see if he can justify a Hall invitation over the remainder of his career.

2. The Red Wings' home "winning" streak
Ok, maybe I'm splitting hairs here, but three of the Red Wings' record-tying 20 straight wins at home have been of the shootout variety (1/12 vs. Phoenix, 1/21 vs. Columbus, and 2/10 vs. Anaheim). When the previous record was set, those games would have been ties. So really, we should be talking about unbeaten streaks, not winning streaks. Still very impressive, but I'm feeling bitter after tonight's loss.

3. The Bryzgalov contract
Get used to seeing this on the list, because it'll be here for the next 8 1/2 years.

4. Juan Castillo returning as defensive coordinator
It's not so much just that Castillo is back, it's that everyone is back. This Eagles team wildly underperformed, and just about every single person is coming back. The only casualties? Secondary coach Johnnie Lynn and maybe DeSean Jackson and Asante Samuel. So the message here is, "nobody is responsible for last year." Andy Reid is just a cheeseburger-guzzling walrus who will never win a Super Bowl in Philadelphia. Enough already.

5. commercials
Is there ANYONE left who thinks that they'll see naked girls on the GoDaddy website? Did they just have some guy write 15 years' worth of Danica Patrick commercials and then lay off the whole marketing department? Give us something new already. You too, Geico caveman. Your constant indignation is just really off-putting at this point.

6. Netflix
Generally, I love Netflix and waste countless hours watching movies when I should be doing something more productive. But my current suggestions queue contains three comedy specials, three sitcoms and one movie I've never heard of, Reno 911, Damages, and the Dick Van Dyke Show. Either I seriously need to come to grips with my questionable tastes, or Netflix has no freaking idea what I want to watch. Also, how is Netflix not hooked up with Rotten Tomatoes yet, so that I know what actual critics think about the movie I'm considering watching instead of looking for a job? MY TIME IS VALUABLE.

And one thing I loved!
Phils reliever Michael Schwimer, a New York native, wrote to Grantland's Katie Baker, who responded in her mailbag (at the bottom). File this in the same category as People magazine's "They're Just Like Us!" tidbits. And Michael, you can feel free to wear your New York gear...just not in public.


  1. I can't say enough how I love your characterization of Andy as a "cheeseburger-guzzling walrus." And though I only watch the Flyers on occasion, the statistical analysis seemed clear that Bryz was an incredibly risky signing. Over the last 20 years, the only goaltenders I can think of who have consistently been great and are hall of fame worthy are Patrick Roy, Martin Brodeur, and Dominick Hasek and maybe Chris Osgood. Am I missing anyone? Every other goaltender seems to have a good year or two and then fades to mediocrity. So why pay Bryz that kind of money? Wouldn't it be better to stick with Bob, or get another young guy with potential?

  2. Well, Roy, Brodeur, and Hasek combined to win 13 of the last 22 Vezina trophies, so I'd say that's a good start. You can throw Ed Belfour in that category as well, along with probably Curtis Joseph. Osgood, to me, is a step below those guys, but benefitted from playing on some amazing Red Wings teams.

    Among current goalies, Lundqvist is like two or three good seasons away from qualifying for that list. Seriously, check out his stats. The consistency is unreal. Never a GAA above 2.43, never a save percentage below .912, and started 68 or more games in each of the last five seasons. He's been obscured because the Rangers have mostly been disappointing during his career, but it certainly hasn't been his fault. And he's definitely first in line for the Vezina this year at this point in the season.