Wednesday, June 22, 2016

A Tribute to Lionel Messi

            Many football (not NFL football, international football) fans rave about the comparisons between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Two of the greatest international stars to date, both Messi and Ronaldo continue to break records year after year. Today, we'll focus on Messi. Again, Messi has broken many records and even has an Olympic Gold Medal to show for it. He was named the Ballon D'or in 2009, the same year he won the FIFA World Player of the Year and the UEFA footballer of the year. He's also won the FIFA Golden Ball twice, has been the top scorer in his respective leagues numerous times, and was the top goalscorer in the 2011 FIFA World Cup. Here's a look at some of Lionel Messi's best goals.


Monday, June 20, 2016

Yes, the 95-96 Bulls Are Still the Greatest NBA Team Ever

            What was shaping up to be a magical season for the Golden State Warriors ended in utter failure yesterday. Toppling the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls' regular season as the best ever, the 2015-2016 Warriors were just a game away from mere immortality. Then a groin shot courtesy of Draymond Green happened.
            You can assess the blame to Green for the low blow on LeBron James, but at least Green performed well in Game 7. However, the same can't be said for the Splash Brothers. Hell, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson were nowhere to be seen for most of the series. Mostly reckless play also contributed to the Warriors' problems not just in the NBA Finals, but in the entire playoffs.
            The end result was a history-making performance. Not a good kind of history, mind you. The Warriors became the first NBA team ever to blow a 3-1 series lead in the NBA Finals. What looked to have so much potential for the Warriors, especially after starting the season 24-0, went out with a whimper. The comparisons to the 95-96 Bulls go along with the disappointing ending.
            Just because a team has the best regular season in history doesn't mean that they're automatically the champions. That's what the playoffs are for. Scottie Pippen, a member of the 95-96 Bulls, sums it up best.
            "No matter how well you do in the regular season, it has to be capped off with a championship, to really mark your legacy on the game. That's where we see Golden State had some failure there. They lost their dominance throughout the playoffs."
            Pippen is right. As dominate as Golden State was during the regular season, they weren't better than the Bulls overall. The 95-96 Bulls had an overall winning percentage (playoffs included) of .870. The Warriors? They had a winning percentage of .830.
            You can even make the case that the 2000-01 Los Angeles Lakers were better than the Warriors. Golden State 2015-2016 postseason run pales in comparison to the 2000-01 Lakers, who went an unprecedented 15-1 in the playoffs, with the only loss coming to the Philadelphia 76ers in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. The Lakers even swept Tim Duncan (who had David Robinson as a teammate) and the San Antonio Spurs in the Western Conference Final that year.
            If you want more proof that a postseason title needs to follow the 'best regular season ever', look no further than these examples. Finishing the season with a record of 116-46 (tying the 1906 Cubs for most wins in a regular season), the 2001 Seattle Mariners didn't even put up a fight in the ALCS, losing to the New York Yankees 4-1. The 1995-96 Detroit Red Wings won 62 games in the regular season before losing 4-2 in the Western Conference Final to the eventual Stanley Cup champ Colorado Avalanche. The New England Patriots went undefeated in the 2007 regular season, but lost a nail-biter to the New York Giants 17-14 in Super Bowl XLII.
            The point is that people won't remember teams with the best regular season ever if they can't finish the job. People just associate the Patriots with sheer dominance in the new millennium, while people look at the Red Wings as being one of the most consistent teams in all of sports. As for the Mariners? Only baseball purists and Seattleites will remember the 2001 season since this was the last time the Mariners made the postseason. Golden State can carve a path similar to the Patriots and the Red Wings. Drafting and signing the right role players along with locking up the right stars will be key for the Warriors in sustaining their success.
            But being compared to the 95-96 Bulls? Don't even think about it.




Photo courtesy of TotalProSports

         

Friday, June 17, 2016

What to Watch For in the 2016-2017 NHL Offseason

            With the Stanley Cup Finals wrapped up, the NHL season has come to a close (at least until October). Don't fret, though. There are plenty of storylines going into the offseason. Here are some to keep an eye on.


  1. What happens to Marc-Andre Fleury and Ben Bishop? The big headline heading into the NHL offseason is what the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Tampa Bay Lightning are doing with their star goalies. Both teams saw the emergence of younger goalies during the playoffs. Tampa Bay should have plenty of cap space and could clear up more if they want. Pittsburgh, on the other hand, doesn't have as much. Fleury is rumored to be a target of the Calgary Flames and Bishop suits a team like Dallas well. Both are in their primes and will benefit a team nicely. 
  2. Where does Steven Stamkos go? Stamkos is easily the biggest free agent target this season. The Lightning captain will fetch a fairly hefty price. Even in an injury-shortened season, he managed 64 points (36 goals, 28 assists) in 2015-2016. Will he return to his hometown of Toronto and play for the Maple Leafs? Will Steve Yzerman do enough to keep Stamkos? These are a few of the questions surrounding Stamkos this offseason.
  3. Where will the next expansion team go? With Las Vegas finally getting a team, the NHL is left with a 31-team league. The Eastern Conference still has one more team than the West, so future expansion (or contraction) will be needed. Some possible suitors for the 16th team in the Western Conference include Seattle (they need to figure out their arena situation), Houston (would be a good rival for the Dallas Stars), and Kansas City (they have an arena, just need an owner). If you're asking about Quebec City, they're out of the question. They would leave the NHL imbalanced again and the Canadian Dollar isn't very strong right now. Therefore, Quebec City is better suited for relocation (here's looking at you, Carolina). 


Credit to @EPoole88 on Twitter

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

My Future

            I'm posting this blog today to make an 'announcement' today. No, I'm perfectly healthy. I have something to tell you regarding my future, which I've thought about recently. With my university career coming pretty close to an end, I can't just graduate from college and do nothing. I can't just stand around, expecting a job to come to me (especially with the job market for college graduates not being the best). So what do I have to announce?
            Some of you won't be surprised to learn that I want out of the state of Michigan. I'm not a big fan of the constant construction of the roads (or the roads themselves). I'm also not the biggest fan of "Michigan winters", for I hate swerving on the roads while I fear for my life or my vehicle. There's plenty more that I could get into as to why I don't like living in Michigan such as how Michigan doesn't rank well in many national statistics (i.e. obesity) or the lack of jobs, but I'll save that for another day.
            What will surprise you is where I want to relocate to. I've decided that California is out of the question. Too many new taxes added day-to-day and it's heavily taxed to begin with. It looks like a nice place to live in, but the prices in California are astronomical! So that's out of the question.
            I want to make something perfectly clear before I get into where I want to relocate to. I want to stick with WRPE. I love doing radio on WRPE. I don't have a program director telling me to do some boring 'morning-zoo' bit and I feel that internet radio has plenty of room to grow. I want this to flourish and take off in such a big way. I'm already discussing bringing advertisers with the head of WRPE. So unless something unfortunate happens to me at WRPE, I'm sticking with my current position.
            Anyways, where do I want to move to? I've narrowed my choices down to two: Dallas and Las Vegas. I've done plenty of research and have looked at plenty of apartments online. I want a place where my kids (if I have any) can have a solid future. I want a place that's affordable. I want a place that isn't cold half of the year.
            Let's start off with Dallas. I like how the cost of living is low in Dallas. There are plenty of sports to cover in Big D and the business atmosphere is big (like they say, everything's bigger in Texas). Dallas has a bigger population, which should make it easier for marketing. Plus, it doesn't snow as often as it does in Michigan. To me, that's a major plus.
            Now let's look at Las Vegas. I want to make my living in the Pacific Time Zone, which is where Las Vegas is. Although the cost of living is higher than living in Dallas, I'm fine with this as long as it's not astronomical. Las Vegas is also one of the biggest entertainment meccas in the world. The apartments here don't look that bad and are affordable. Plus, there's going to be a couple sports teams coming into town in the near-future.
            So both places have their advantages. However, only one with be my new home within the next couple years. Hopefully I'll have my mind made up by then.
            I want to thank my family, especially my mother, for being very supportive of my decision. You've helped me throughout my life and you'll be a critical asset for me going forward. I'm looking forward to see what my future holds in a new location. Here's to a bright future!!



Friday, June 10, 2016

Mandatory Cat Post

            Time to shower the internet with more cat stuff!! Enjoy!



















Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Yordano Ventura is a Dick

            Yordano Ventura, a pitcher for the Kansas City Royals, doesn't seem to have many friends in baseball. He just instigated a bench-clearing brawl after beaning Manny Machado in a game against Baltimore earlier today. There are people who charge the mound once, maybe twice in their careers. There are people like Jose Bautista who get into brawls and are known for having a bit of a temper. Then there's Yordano Ventura. Here's a look at some of the antagonist moments that Ventura displayed in recent years.


Saturday, June 4, 2016

The Greatest

            Yesterday, a legend was taken away from us. Muhammad Ali, a boxing champion and outstanding wordsmith, passed away from complications of Parkinson's Disease. An outspoken man competitively and even politically, Ali always made his presence felt. He exuded confidence whenever he spoke, proving his skill in the ring. This led to winning 56 of 61 bouts in his professional career, including 37 knockouts. He also introduced the concept of "trash-talking", a concept where he talked down to his opponents. This would be adopted by athletes like Shaquille O'Neal and Richard Sherman. He's even won Olympic gold, winning at the 1960 Games in Rome.
            Here's a look at some of his most famous quotes and moments.

  • "Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee."
  • "He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life."
  • "The man who views the world at 50 the same as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life."
  • "Service to others is the rent you pay here on earth."
  • "I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was."
  • "The man who has no imagination has no wings."
  • "I know where I'm going to be and I know the truth, and I don't have to be what you want me to be. I'm free to be what I want."
  • "It isn't the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it's the pebble in your shoe."