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Weekend Links with Jon Marthaler

Saturday, December 13th, 2008

weekendlinks2.jpgSorry for the delay, but it has been one misadventure after another trying to get these links up today. First, we left our laptop at work last night so we wouldn’t have to lug it around the Wolves game and the after-game shenanigans. We thought: no problem, we’ll just file the links for the RBBH’s computer in the morning. But we couldn’t remember the blog login and didn’t have it saved on her computer. No problem, we’ll just go grab the laptop on the way to this craft show the RBBH is participating in. Ah, but we were running late, so we had to drop her off first. No problem, we’ll just run to get it after we go to the bank for small bills for said sale. After about 20 minutes in line at the bank, we come to find out they are out of $1 bills, which is kind of like McDonald’s being out of hamburgers. But still, we were on our way. Got the laptop. We were on our way back to the craft sale, where we would have wireless and be able to post. Get to the craft sale parking lot and slam into a curb. Nice driving. Flat tire. Half-hour or so later, after changing it, here we are. We would just stay in the rest of the day, but we’re told there’s a holiday party to attend tonight. We’ll probably end up spilling hot buttered rum on our Shiancoe. But enough of that. Here are Jon’s links:

When I was a kid, I distinctly remember the NFL playing Saturday games after the college football season ended. It was great — it allowed Saturday football junkies like me a way to keep up the habit through the first couple of weeks of January. But there are no pro games tomorrow — in fact, there’s just one Saturday game the remainder of the year. Instead, we’re stuck with the stupidity of Thursday night NFL games. You know, because Thursday night is such a traditional football night.

Anyway, let’s have some links:

*We start today with a Weekend Links Endorsement: Twins blogger Seth Stohs has taken his minor-league expertise offline and transmogrified it into book form by writing the Minnesota Twins Prospect Handbook for 2009. I got my copy in the middle of last week, and it’s already come in handy, to look up shortstops in the Twins’ system that could conceivably replace Nick Punto. Seriously, if you’re the kind of person that enjoys reading the small print at the back of the Sunday paper to see who’s doing well in the farm system — Stohs has already written down everything you’ll need to know.

*Your list of the week: a list of the ten greatest TV sports themes of all time (well, really of the last 20 years). Apart from the lack of the “This Week in Baseball” theme, the horribly low rankings of the CBS College Football theme and of the “ESPN National Hockey Night” theme, and a confusingly Canuck choice at #1 — I’d have to say I agree.

*If it’s a preview of the Gophers-Colorado College hockey series you’re looking for, then look no further than the … New York Times? Can that be right?

*Every time Nick Hornby blogs about what he calls football, I’ll link to it.

*Every time Joe Posnanski types just about anything, I’ll link to it. This one’s about Rickey Henderson, who I’ll remind you once left the following message on a GM’s answering machine: “”Kevin, this is Rickey. Calling on behalf of Rickey. Rickey wants to play baseball.”

*Finally, Chris at Western College Hockey thinks that high school hockey in Minnesota may be on the endangered list.

That’ll do it for me — two hockey links and a soccer link, what a Saturday. Enjoy your weekend.

TFD: Feeding the Evil Empire, vote for COW

Friday, December 12th, 2008

evil.jpgWell, it looks like the Yankees are going to add A.J. Burnett to their roster for a cool $82.5 million over five years. So that’s about $40 million a year committed to CC Sabathia and Burnett for the next five years (plus a couple more years of CC after that). So yeah, put that in your recession pipe and smoke it, along with that tobacco you have cut with newspaper shavings in order to make it last a little longer. Oh, and they might sign Andy Pettitte as well. Time to put on the hate pants! (Doesn’t everyone have hate pants)? As for us, we’ll be heading over soon to watch a 4-17 basketball team.

We would ask just one favor in the mean time: vote for Commenter Of the Week. It’s been a truly outstanding week, with fine performances from the usual suspects and new folks joining the fold with some nice musings as well. We would encourage you to vote for Rocket, but we don’t want him to use his power to tell the story of that one time with the yak, the Romanian ice dancing team and the “experimental surgery.” So do what you will.

The Internets: LeBron, Festivus and Gambling

Friday, December 12th, 2008

burn.jpg*I have a gambling problem? I have a gambling problem? Sorry, just a slight variation on the opening scene from “Burn After Reading.” Did we mention it’s the most quotable movie since Anchorman? Yeah, you heard that right. Anyway, yes, sir, you have a gambling problem. And just because you lost $37 million doesn’t mean it was the casino’s fault. But don’t let that stop you from filing that lawsuit. (Matt Millen clicks link furiously, imagines a sympathetic court that would rule against the NFL for “making” him draft so many wide receivers).

*Hugging Harold Reynolds offers a petition to end LeBron James petitions.

*Festivus. It’s for the rest of us. Or, if you live in Washington state, it’s for everyone.

*And finally, we have tallied the comments from the Mount Rushmore post, and it seems as though these are your finalists for four spots based on the criteria:

Norm Green
Les Steckel
Stephon Marbury
Clem Haskins
Lou Holtz
Kevin McHale
Herschel Walker
Carl Pohlad
Mike Lynn

Vote for your top 4 in the comments this time, and we’ll hammer this out.

That outdoor hockey game at Wrigley will be awesome

Friday, December 12th, 2008

nhl-winter-classic.jpgThe NHL today released an artist’s rendering of what the NHL Winter Classic 2009 at Wrigley Field will look like. That game, between the Blackhawks and Red Wings, is on New Year’s Day — just a few weeks away. And, um, that looks pretty spectacular. Wethinks something like this needs to happen at the new Twins ballpark, yes? (And thanks to Stensation for passing along the image).

Friday venting: The all-time Mount Rushmore of Minnesota sports fan venom

Friday, December 12th, 2008

herschel.jpgLa Velle E. Neal III, who is probably skipping down the street like a schoolgirl today after his Bears defeated the Saints in OT last night, opened up his piece on Nick Punto today with this bit of whimsy: If there was a Mount Rushmore of vilified Twin Cities sports figures, it probably would include these men: the Wolves’ Kevin McHale, the Vikings’ Tarvaris Jackson, the Wild’s Martin Skoula and the Twins’ Nick Punto.

Now, obviously this was just a list of active members of the sports scene because if a person was inclined to compile an all-time list of the four most frequent and intense targets of venom in Minnesota sports history, it would have to be much different. Maybe McHale would stay, but we can’t imagine any of the others fit into the all-time category. And that’s where you come in. Let’s carve a mountain. Four local sports figures. Zero love. We should be able to come to some sort of consensus, or at least a working list of 10 from which to vote. We’ll leave this open for a while and see where it gets us. Why? Because that’s what we do in December to forget about the cold.