Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Sunday Bull Session, Episode 1

What's up, friends. This is the first installment of a new SCSD! feature. It's called the 'Sunday Bull Session,' and it's a chat between sports fans. My friend Nick had the idea, and I think it's something we'll do every Sunday morning. This morning's panel featured myself ("me," in the chat segment below), Nick from Clearing the Bench, my pal and SCSD contributor Spike, and Nick's friend Will. We covered everything from second-tier Dutch soccer to bad referees to Tiger Woods to Brett Favre's penis to the mythical one-on-one showdown between Brian Zoubek and Devan Downey. And I almost stopped the chat cold with a dumb joke/comment about Tiger playing for Team Europe in the Ryder Cup. I've left the format dirty and real. Enjoy!

Nick: hello, will meet shane ryan
shane - note that I seem to have lost our chat from before
9:27 AM wirivers: hello shane
Nick:How was the party will
me: ok i'm here
figuring out how to invite
wirivers: it was tons of fun, I am working on very little sleep and not sure how on point I am
9:28 AM (already making excuses)
Nick: ts ok
this is not like around the horn where shane is going to kick you out
if you don't make good points
wirivers: haha
Spike has joined
wirivers: just messing around a bit
me: welcome to spike
Spike: hello all
Nick: but shane has a blog called "Seth Curry Saves Duke" where he follows his beloved yankees and the blue devils
me: how do i pop this chat out
9:29 AM the technology is defying me so far
Nick: top corner, see the arrow points upward?
me: yesssss
this is going to be a good day
Nick: i have actually expanded it full screen
me: not sure if i'm ready for that
wirivers: it's a lot to handle
Nick: so spike how are ya? my name is Nick and I'm an alcoholic
Spike: I'm swell
9:30 AM I'm in Holland
wirivers: hello Spike
Holland is far
Spike: the only places to watch games are coffee shops
and by games I mean second tier european soccer matches
Nick: haha
me: this is the official twente fc chat, right?
9:31 AM what else would we talk about?
wirivers: hope so, that's why i'm awake right now
Nick: (just cracked a beer in anger)
me: on a serious note
spike is a big seattle guy
Nick: Let's party
me: and i've been holding off on asking him this until our chat
Spike: oh god
me: the ref from the steelers-seahawks super bowl has basically admitted he goofed
and cost seattle the game
how does this affect a memory that must already be painful?
Nick: why on Earth did the ref come out and admit to that stuff so many years later?
wirivers: that makes no sense, how does that help anything?
Spike: because he was the ref assigned to handle the Seahawks training camp
9:33 AM and he was trying to make amends
Nick: It's like if a girl you dated sophomore year in high school e-mailed you this morning with pictures of her cheating on you in 2001
me: even though you already kinda knew
but had tried to forget about it
Spike: I'm glad he hasn't slept well over it
me: does it help, though, from a seattle perspective?
Nick: yeah, and she did it because she thought she might run into you over christmas break this year
me: because he did seem really upset about it, still
Spike: I'm glad he's upset
9:34 AM I think he evinced the right amount of pain
5 years later still not sleeping well
me: haha
Spike: I don't want him to go Donnie Moore on us
I want him to live out his life just a little haunted by his ultimate failure
Nick: Shane - do you still remember the defensive holding call that negated a Jesse Armstead pick 6 in their super bowl loss?
me: honestly, only vaguely, and only from reading about it
Nick: oh
9:35 AM well my buddy Tom is diehard giants and still talks about it - so in a way it is good to know that refs remember just like rans
me: my hatred of seahorn is my main memory from that game
and ray lewis dancing
before the game
Nick: and ray lewis killing someone after the game
oh, wait, that was the year before
Spike: god, he loved murder
9:36 AM me: and let's be honest, he was great at it
very creative, always efficient, never caught
Nick: well he only killed one person
wirivers: him and the Juice have drinks together about how the skipped on going to the big house
me: that we know of
Nick: Jason Seahorn killed the entire Giants team during the Super Bowl
9:37 AM Spike: our QB got called for a chop block on a post interception tackle in our superbowl loss after having the previous play negated on a phantom holding call
a chop block!
on a tackle!
me: when he was on D
Nick: I cna honestly say I don't remember much about that Super Bowl
9:38 AM Is anyone surprised with how LITTLE Pete Carroll is getting covered in Seattle? I think it's a much bigger deal but for some reason it's not getting tons of pub.
me: yeah, and the nfc west has some really fun coaches now
Nick: What does everyone think Pete brings to the table, and how will they do for the next couple of years?
9:39 AM wirivers: I don't know what Pete brings to the NFL now, that he didn't back with the Pats
I mean he drove those teams basically into the ground, but now that he coached at USC we're supposed to believe he's better?
Spike: I lived in LA for much of the Carroll at SC era... so I have hope, though I couldn't honestly pinpoint how his approach their could translate
Nick: Spike and Will are hitting the nail on the head.
Spike: the bigger question for the Hawks is whether Okung is a legit premier LT
9:40 AM Nick: I think Carroll is going to fall on his face
Spike: Walter Jones is the best offensive player of the past 15 years, and is essentially the reason the Hawks went on their run in 05
wirivers: do they have a WR who can catch or a QB who's back isn't literally falling apart?
Nick: Because pros love his laid back "Camp Carroll" but the truth is halfway through the season other teams are going to be more prepared for the tough part of the schedule
Spike: they don't have any talent on offense right now
Nick: Deion Branch is still getting paid like a #1 receiver
9:41 AM me: i hope he succeeds, both for spike and because i legitimately like carroll
Nick: They did the same story they have the last 3 years on Matt Hasselback "he's the best kept secret in the NFL, he may put up MVP numbers"
me: on a semi-related note, this is one of the better magazine sports stories i've read in recent years
Spike: he has a tough rap for a coach with a winning record
me: for future reference
9:42 AM Spike: mostly because Belicheck was able to dominate immediately after he left
me: which has to be attributed at least somewhat to carroll, right?
Nick: well that's silly
Spike: ehhhhhhhhhhhh
9:43 AM Nick: I mean, John Gruden won a super bowl with Tony Dungy's same roster basically - but that means Gruden's better, not that Dungy would have done it anyways
me: i think we're all in agreement, belichick needs to give his super bowl rings where they belong - PETE CARROLL
wirivers: Somewhat, but what players did he bring in? Wasn't he handed the keys to a great team and made them mediocre?
By great, I mean well above average
Nick: Let's just say it went Parcells-Carroll-Bellichek, and he was the worst of the 3
so that's why NE fans forget him
9:44 AM wirivers: Or at least drink their way to forgetting him
Nick: well they've got plenty of good memories
in recent years
me: and boston fans would never be ungrateful
Nick: I hate Boston fans of every kind.
9:45 AM Can we all agree on that?
Spike: I had a pats fan try to sell me on their recent super bowl loss being worse than the Hawks because, "once you know what it's like to win, it's really hard not to."
me: oh god
wirivers: Die
Nick: Will with the best bang for his buck of any post so far
me: who are your teams, will
nick told me you went to davidson
wirivers: grew up in South Carolina, went to Davidson
9:46 AM Nick: so that means will and shane have a curry brothers connection
Spike: what year?
wirivers: very much a south carolina fan
2005 grad
me: yeah i was gonna ask, how much am i going to love seth curry
wirivers: if he's 1/3 the player of steph
steal of the century from Liberty
9:47 AM me: and you were there for the golden years
wirivers: those kids shoot it better than their dad, and have the benefit of actually being able to dribble effectively
me: awesome
i've written about this before, but in my mind steph curry is almost magical
i don't expect that from seth necessarily
Nick: Did Steph Curry make the cut for USA basketball
me: but yeah, if even a little of that mystical whatever rubs off
i'll be quite happy
9:48 AM wirivers: I didn't see him on the cut list from when Tyreke Evans, ect got cut, so I guess he did
not 100% though
Spike: he made it
9:49 AM me: he was close second for the 2010 rookie of the year, too
the knicks missing out on him still haunts me
worst draft night ever
wirivers: but, but Donnie Walsh knows what he's doing??
Spike: I'm still waiting for Mike Sweetney to pan out
9:50 AM me: hahaha
Nick: Yeah plus he brought Isaiah back into the fold, so Knicks are on the right track
me: yeah donnie walshi is a moron, but at least in this case we didn't pass on him
Nick: Shane, you could start a Knicks blog "Isaiah Thomas Save Madison Square Garden"
Spike: that's more a fan fic post
me: it would have to compete with my current one, "Adolf Hitler Saves World Peace"
9:51 AM wirivers: hahaha
me: spike loves that blog
Nick: How important is Tiger Woods playing good to all of you following the rest of the golf season?
me: spike and i were just talking about this last night
Spike: I think if he's this bad it's fascinating
me: the US ryder cup team changed its rules, so only the top 8 are automatic
9:52 AM he's #9 now, and will drop after this weekend
Nick: but - he will miss the last 3-4 events of the year if he plays bad
wirivers: I agree, I'm not rooting for him to play poorly, but to see him hack it around is really interesting
Nick: the playoffs system drops players as the playoffs go on
Spike: well, I mean, post PGA golf is kinda boring anyway
me: i agree, but i think you just made nick's shit list
Nick: spike - yes it is, but this year we have the playoffs, and also the fact that players from both Ryder Cup teams will be playing in those events leading up to the event
9:53 AM (big golf fan here)
Spike: are the playoffs different than the fedex cup?
Nick: no, same thing
I just prefer to call them what they are
they are playoffs - guys get eliminated, and there is a "finals" with 30 players
Spike: I don't need tiger in that to watch it
I like anything that arbitrarily creates drama
9:54 AM I'll watch the chase for the cup
Nick: the Fed Ex Cup is going after next year (maybe this year?) because they are losing a lot of money
me: if tiger finishes out of the top 8 in the US standings, and you guys are Pavin
Nick: wow spike, it's almost like you are the ideal PGA tour fan - when Tiger's not in the fold you buy into their ad campaign. Tim Finchem thanks you.
me: are you making him a captain's pick?
9:55 AM wirivers: Tim Finchem wears Tiger Woods nightgowns
Nick: NO. I do not make him a captain's pick. I say TOMORROW that he is on the team, no matter where he finishes. I say it's 8 guys, and Tiger.
me: haha will
where can i buy one?
a tiger woods nightgown is a quick and dirty way to get a girlfriend to break up with you
9:56 AM wirivers: whenever you need some strange...tiger woods nightgown there to help you
Nick: You can say that Pavin is usurping the process by doing that - but Tiger is American golf, Tiger IS golf. You don't play a Ryder Cup without him.
Spike: the team is a mess without him
there's no upside to leaving him off
wirivers: Pavin has to get him on the team
Nick: They beat a terrible Euro team without him under Azinger.
But make no mistake this year's Euro team, on paper, is better than the USA, and they have home course advantage.
9:57 AM Spike: exactly
me: the only upside i can see is that we become huge underdogs without him, and then the rooting game becomes awesome
wirivers: he's playing like donkey, but the Ryder is some of the utmost pressure, wouldn't that pressure maybe help him play better?
Nick: It could Will.
Spike: I don't know, this is uncharted territory of suck for Tiger
Nick: He's the most intense competitor in any sport right now. He was made the for Ryder Cup.
9:58 AM Spike: he had played 9 Bridgestone events at firestone and had 7 1sts, a 2nd and a 4th
me: i agree with you guys on principle, but part of me hates the way he's been carrying himself, still with the same a way i think it could be great for pavin to say 'screw it, we'll win without him'
Nick: Yes, he sucks - but put him out there with Anthony Kim in the first match, and they'll deliver.
Spike: he's in 78th
I agree you have to play him, but I don't know that I'd be confident
9:59 AM me: imagine all the ways montgomerie could taunt him in the lead-up
Nick: Shane and Spike - he's Tiger Woods. He was 5-0 in the president's cup last year. He's won 14 majors (more than players both other teams combined maybe)
me: if the british isles had any attractive women, we'd be in trouble
wirivers: tiger could point out that monty still looks like mrs doubtfire though
Nick: monty has a nice rack.
10:00 AM If Pavin wants to leave Woods off the team he can - but then he creates more of a distraction than if Tiger shows up and plays. That much I know.
wirivers: He doesn't seem to be driven by these "regular" tournaments right now and hasn't really put together 72 holes of gold, but int he Ryder cup you don't need all 72 back to back to be successful
me: i think realistically it'll be tiger's choice...pavin won't leave him off, right?
wirivers: *golf
10:01 AM me: yeah good point will, a 9 on a hole won't kill you
Nick: Imagine if he leaves Woods off - and then Tiger decides to go play in the whatever cities classic instead - more people will watch that then the Ryder Cup.
me: i will bring that quote back to haunt you in a month nick
Nick: Shane - I think there is a chance PAvin leaves him off.
10:02 AM wirivers: I don't think Pavin has the cojones to leave him off
Nick: I think he does.
I think he's pissed, still, that Azinger took his job last year. Pavin was the choice and then Zinger showed up with his "4 man pods" theory.
wirivers: true
10:03 AM Nick: And then this year the PGA of America almost took his job again at the 11th hour, and let Zinger do it again.
wirivers: yep, about to say that
great article about that was just published
Spike: who would they be putting on instead of him?
me: i didn't hear about that
Nick: So I think Corey Pavin wants this to be about Corey Pavin for once.
10:04 AM And I think he just might say that a hot Justin Leonard is better than a still-rounding into form Tiger Woods
But here's the thing about the captain's picks
while the final 8 are set right after the PGA, there is a couple more weeks to decide on the picks
so Tiger might get shut out of one of the events that determines captains picks
10:05 AM if that happens Pavin will not put him on the team.
10:06 AM me: what if pavin leaves him off, and he exploits some legal loophole about having a euro wife, and plays for team europe?
i think that's the perfect ratings situation
Spike: does he still have a euro wife?
wirivers: I have no idea how to respond to that
Nick: technically, yes.
10:07 AM Spike: k, I don't know how fast paperwork gets processed these days
Nick: Bottom-line it will end up being all about Corey Pavin unless Woods is top 3 in the PGA.
and it doesn't look like he's going to do that.
10:08 AM wirivers: Tiger finished top 4 in the US Open and Masters
me: yeah i was gonna say that, i still think he's got another gear for the majors
Nick: he needs a good finish at the PGA to help him not only in the rankings, but also to help him advance to the top 60 and play in at least 3 of the 4 playoffs events
wirivers: the Straits is a much different course, but it's still a major
me: if anyone can get it together for 4 rounds, it's him
Nick: Straits is a precision course, not a bombers haven - I think he may miss the cut.
10:09 AM especially because he hates playing the week before a major.
wirivers: Also, I don't think you can take yesterday's or today's round from him into account, he just wants to get out of Ohio and get to practicing more for the PGA
Nick: Ohio sucks, that is for sure.
wirivers: LBJ taught me that
me: and golf is a sport where negative results in a single event can build and beget more...but a fresh start can erase all that, so i agree, we don't have to take these high rounds too too seriously
10:10 AM Spike: yeah, but the Ryder Cup is in Wales
wirivers: and I don't mean Lyndon Johnson
Nick: haha
anyways enough golf
10:11 AM Shane who is in charge at Duke when Coach K is running team USA?
me: i mean, i guess wojo and the other assistants, but he's always basically in charge
wirivers: Mr Slappin' the Floor?
me: team USA is mostly a summer venture
our "big man" coach, if you can believe it
Nick: he's shorter than me
10:12 AM wirivers: wait, what?
he coaches the bigs?
Nick: i'd heard that too haha
me: from wikipedia:
Although he is a 5'11" (1.80 m) point guard, Wojciechowski is Duke's "big man" coach for the inside players.
Spike: I wish you guys hadn't won it all last year so I could make a Plumlee joke
me: stranger than fiction
wirivers: if he's 5'11" I'm 7'5"
10:13 AM Nick: hahaha
me: although there is that while 'basketball short' thing
Nick: For those of you who don't know, will is a dead ringer for Scott Van Pelt before SVP went bald.
me: he may look like a midget compared to everyone else, but 5'11" wouldn't surprise me
spike, please make the plumlee joke anyway
10:14 AM do you also leave weird rambling voicemails, will?
wirivers: agree, but it looks like Spud Webb could post him up
Spike: fuck... you called my bluff
Nick: yes he does, leaves them for me all the time.
10:15 AM wirivers: gchat doesn't get the proper "voice inflection" across for the SVP voice
Nick: that's the most amazing thing - you sound just like him
but you're lucky enough not to be from Maryland
wirivers: ESPN asks me to fill in for him from time to time
me: i think svp is one of the more likable sportscenter anchors
10:16 AM Nick: he's my favorite.
wirivers: I enjoy not being from maryland
me: me too
Spike: me three
Nick: I think you're school has as many quality NBA players as his right now
wirivers: pffft, Steve Blake doesn't count
10:17 AM Nick: Umm
me: oh man what was that SC guard's name from last year?
he was amazing
wirivers: Devan Downey
me: my favorite non-dukie from 09-10
Spike: Downey was incredible
wirivers: guy is literally 5'9"
me: easily last year's most fun player
after brian zoubek
wirivers: he was great, kept every game interesting at least
10:18 AM Spike: Zoubek moved with the sort of fluidity that let you know he was being coached up by a point guard
Nick: boom
wirivers: goes
me: the
Nick: the
Spike: dynamite!!
wirivers: yessir
Nick: wow
me: here's a legitimate question
who would win a 1 on 1 game between downey and zoubek
Nick: easily more impressive than anything ever done on ATH
10:19 AM Downey
me: i'm not so sure...downey is the obvious choice
Spike: Downey
me: but i think if it went down, he'd have trouble stopping the zou
wirivers: Downey
does the zoubek have to start from the 3 point line?
Nick: zoubek would not be able to dribble - downey would steal it every time
me: and zoubek could play well off him on D
10:20 AM yeah he'd have to start from 3
Nick: Did anyone see the Twins uniforms (on espn right now) from lats night
Spike: remember that scene in Space Jam where the Aliens didn't win? that would be Zoubek
Nick: they looked like prison garb
me: haha
10:21 AM Spike: I still can't believe the Twins aren't up 10 games in that division
even with the injuries
Nick: for the record
Nick: (and here comes name-dropping/big timing_)
I covered the Red Sox and the Twins spring training this year for a local paper
10:22 AM and you could just tell the Twins were going to have a good year, and the Red Sox were going to be below their norm
Because the Twins were professionals, they acted like they were at work, and their manager acted like he had a real job to do every second of every interview, practice, and game
Spike: Trevor Plouffe beat my high school team in the state finals which was led by Brennan Boesch by pitching a complete game shutout... Boesch hit what would have been a jack to dead away center that was caught over the wall
10:23 AM I was drunk
Nick: Whereas Boston was cocky, playing loud music all the time, making fun of eachother and acting pissed off that they even had to be at practice
Spike: (that's my name dropping response to shane's picture)
me: i can see that nick
wirivers: sounds like Adrian Beltre with the being pissed off thing
10:24 AM me: though, let's be honest, boston is a better team than minnesota
wirivers: that guy needs help
Spike: the Twins are arguably the best team in the bigs when healthy
Liriano is the best pitcher in the AL outside of Cliff Lee
Nick: Dustin Pedrioia is like my least favorite human being - he is such a dick, and he acts like a high school senior
me: you could say the same about the sox though, much as i hate to admit it
10:25 AM Spike: the sox have some serious issues
wirivers: wouldn't you pick Mauer and Morneau over anyone on the red sox?
me: yeah absolutely, but those are only two players
wirivers: health disregarded
me: boston has a far superior staff
when healthy
wirivers: agree, but having those two allows for much tougher pitching decisions
me: and for playoff considerations, lester-buchholz-beckett are probably the best 3 in the bigs
Nick: hmm
10:26 AM me: and not to take anything away from M&M
wirivers: who scares anyone in boston's lineup?
me: but youkilis and pedroia come pretty close to their production
Nick: What about the Rays?
The Rays have the best 7 game pitching staff
Spike: xFIP disagrees strongly with your analysis
wirivers: what is that sabermetrics?
Nick: Geez
Spike: uh oh
me: even beltre is up there
10:27 AM Spike: what have I walked into?
Nick: and I was just starting to feel like a geek for organizing a sports chat
Spike: I was talking about Twins vs. Sox staffs
the Sox staff has great names
but the Twins staff has been better
me: haha spike and i both love stats, but spike is approximately 57% more knowledgeable at sabremetrics than me (his numbers)
Spike: Lester is a beast, but Liriano is unreal right now
10:28 AM me: liriano is awesome
wirivers: Liriano looke to finally be recovered from exploding his arm
me: beckett is worth watching though
his last 3 starts have been pretty great
since coming off injury
Spike: I also hate John Lackey
there is no number for that
me: haha true
we owned him yesterday
10:29 AM Nick: lackey is an asshole as well
me: who would you consider minnesota's #3 pitcher
if we say pavano is #2
is he, nick?
he seems like an asshole
Nick: he is
me: so does beckett, even more so
Nick: they just all are
well papelbon takes the cake
but that's pretty widely-known
beckett is pretty bad
Mike Cameron is a nice guy
10:30 AM wirivers: Mike Cameron has to be nice, he's 63 years old
Nick: Marco Scutaro is a dick - he pretends like he can't speak English
Spike: Scott Baker
to answer Shane's question
Mike Cameron and Adrian Beltre are both great
I'm really sad they're in Boston
though Beltre will finally get some recognition for it
10:31 AM Nick: I didn't interview Beltre
but he is having a great year
wirivers: just don't mess with Beltre's hair, wait he doesn't have hair? he's just insane?
Spike: is he wearing a cup this year?
Nick: I have to depart the chat in 5-10 mins - can we please talk some Favre? Unlike most people I can't get enough of it
10:32 AM wirivers: he's playing
Nick: When will he take his first snap then Will?
wirivers: now we have 10 min on another topic
Nick: haha
wirivers: 3rd preseason game
me: i was bussing tables at a strip club in new york early last year, and i actually got to interview a cell phone picture of brett favre's dong
apparently, he's playing
10:33 AM wirivers: Rachael Nichols is jealous of that girl
Nick: Favre's penis was been talking more than Favre
wirivers: jenna sturgis?
Nick: Florida State grad - not surprising she's the kind of girl who gets dong shots sent to her
Go Gators
Our girls just get dirty texts
10:34 AM me: duke girls don't get phone calls
wirivers: and stalked from city to city
Nick: or peephole vidoes shot of them
nice will
there are girls at duke?
Spike: Williams girls don't get phone coverage
wirivers: Davidson girls hate the sun
10:35 AM Spike: wait, what did you want us to say about Brett Favre?
Nick: I just want to know when he's taking his first snap (if you think he is)
I say, in all seriousness, week 1
Spike: oh... um... yeah, week 1
me: preseason game #3?
Nick: I'm not sure if he will start the game or not
10:36 AM wirivers: two and two with the votes
Nick: but he'll take his first snaps week 1
me: ok guys, that makes one hour
what say we wrap this baby up
10:37 AM Spike: Lance Berkman is a double agent, out for revenge on behalf of of an Astros franchise slighted by both Pettite and Clemens... PROVE ME WRONG???
Nick: Damn. That was going to be my parting shot.
10:38 AM me: AJ Burnett will pitch his best game of the season tonight against Beckett and Boston...Yanks will steal 6 bases.
10:39 AM Nick: Phil Mickelson will win the tournament today, take the number one ranking away from Tiger Woods, and Woods will come out next Tuesday in his press conference and say he wants badly to be considered for a captain's pick.
Spike: I want one more... FC Twente to the Champions League Quarters!!!
10:40 AM Nick: Will, final thoughts?
me: i want to change mine to spike's
Nick: (FC Twente will choke)
wirivers: I will eventually learn to learn that college practice reports have less validity than anything that Phil Jackson says in interviews
college football*
Nick: Especially when spurrier is your coach
wirivers: damn right
10:41 AM me: seeya guys
Nick: Same time next week for anyone who's bored
wirivers: thanks gentleman
Spike: thanks for inviting me all!

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