Trash Talk – The Hitched and The (Potentially) Unhitched Edition

First off, we’re gonna be moving a little fast here, because it is a classic Circus weekend; the lads are in Silverstone for the British Grand Prix. I’ll return to that in a minute, but there is also the issue of the continued existence of F1. There is a potential divorce in the making. From CNN:

Eight of the sport’s major teams (Formula One Teams Association or FOTA) have potentially thrown the glamorous world of F1 into chaos by making good on their intention to set up a rival championship for 2010.

It follows months of talks and frustrations after they failed to resolve their dispute with motor sport’s governing body over financial constraints. Quite simply, the Formula One Teams’ Association announced they would not compromise on the quality of the series by signing up unconditionally for the 2010 F1 season following the release of the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile’s (FIA) radical new plans for cost-cutting.

All of this follows FIA president Max Mosley’s insistence on introducing a voluntary $60 million budget cap for teams to curtail what has been called a “financial arms race” in the sport.

The teams in question are championship leader Brawn GP, Ferrari, McLaren, Renault, Toyota, BMW Sauber, Red Bull Racing and Toro Rosso. With the two remaining outfits, Force India and Williams, staying put as it were.

The sport will go where the manufacturers go, notably Ferrari. The list of breakaways is everybody that matters, even weaker teams like Toro Rosso. To my mind, that means they will sort this out with Ecclestone and Mosely and things will remain where they are. Bernie and Max really have no choice. But that is just my take. Please discuss Circus heads!

As I said earlier, the British GP is this weekend. Here is the track (I miss Brands Hatch). Here is a rundown of practice. Qualifying is at 8:00 am EST Saturday on SpeedTV. The race is at 9:00 am EST on FOX (tape delayed, the suckers). See if Jenson Button can win this one too. Hard to bet against the lad at this point.

But the excitement doesn’t end there. Oh no. No way hoser. Read more

NFL Entry Draft Trash Talk

Alright you mopes. There you were buggering up EW’s nice threads, demanding to talk football. Can’t blame ya there. The Motor City Kitties have a new QB, and a good one I think. And now the NY Jets Jets Jets do too, having traded up in order to go full Sanchez.

Trash it up and keep Marcy’s nice substantive threads clean will ya? Thank y’all.

Bad Brackets – Hoops Trash Talk Part Deaux

Sorry about the sparse posting but your happy hosts here are, you know, off being happy this weekend. Marcy has pounded her poor fingers into a pulp and me, well I am tired just from watching her. So here is a copy of my brackets for the NCAAs. I was 15-1 at the end of the first day Thursday. Looked simply golden I did. Then Friday came. Jeebus, what a nightmare, and Cleveland State taking out Wake Forest seriously buggered a whole side of my bracket. My bracket I filled out is here to the right; click on it for a full size and then comment on how much better you are doing.

So today is my wife’s birthday and we are up in Sedona at Junipine Resort on Oak Creek with our daughter too. It is absolutely beautiful here. Enjoy yourselves, trash the joint up, and consider this an open thread to chit chat, post and discuss anything you wish. Cheers.

March Madness Bracket Trash Talk

picture-1.thumbnail.pngBack by popular demand: It’s teh Wheelhouse March Madness Road to the Final Four Bracket Extravaganza! I gotta tell you, this is a great year to argue for your favorite team, because with the exception of a few small conference champion entrants, there is a lot of parity in the field, some key injuries here and there and some intriguing matchups. Bottom line, this is a very unpredictable field and it will be very hard to pick all the way through the championship.

Click on the graphic immediately to the left for a full size detailed set of brackets that include teams, dates, locations and times of the games. Here is a link to a fully printable set of brackets you can print off and fill out.

And this year, the first in the last eight that we have not had an imbecilic moron in the White House, we have a special treat for you: Baracketology. Yep, the Big O fills out a set of brackets!

Now, we have a bit of a conundrum here. Marcy is not, by nature, a hoops fan; she like those funny looking footballs instead of the perfect symmetry of Dr. Naismith’s round ball. And we may have a hook to reel her in with. Yep, a honest to god real live team from Michigan that is in the playoffs and that doesn’t involve octopi on ice. That’s right, the Michigan Wolverines are in the Big Dance thanks to that nice coach, John Beiline, they stole from Christy Hardin Smith and the fine folks of West Virginia. Big Blue plays Clemson at 7pm Eastern Thursday night in the Kansas City portion of the South bracket. Of course, her odds are better with Michigan State, which will play a puny 15 see, Robert Morris at 10pm Eastern Friday night.

Obviously, those games are not quite as exciting as the ASU Sun Devils’ first foray into the dance since 2003. ASU will be playing Temple at 2:45pm Eastern in the Miami portion of the south bracket. If you haven’t seen the Devils in the last couple of years, they have a fantastic sophomore guard, James Harden, who was the Pac-10 player of the year and a consensus first team All-American. He is really good. They also have a senior center, Jeff Pendergraph and a point guard, Derek Glasser that are pretty good. Temple has a couple of studs in Dionte Christmas and Lavoy Allen that can light it up. Quite frankly, I am worried Temple may upset the Devils. But, like EW, I Read more

Super Bowl 43 Trash Talk: The Red & The Black

This is it baby, the big finale. All the marbles come down to these two: One Red. One Black. One will leave with the Lombardi Trophy in hand, the other with the regret of the world’s biggest runner-up percolating in their gut for the entire off season, maybe for the rest of their lives.

Parting is such sweet sorrow; nevertheless, with this game will come the end of another season of football trash talk here at Emptywheel. Yes, we occasionally whip out a trash talk without football (March Madness and the start of the F1 Circus are certainly possibilities), but it isn’t the same without the pigskin in the air.

What a season it has been, from the tantalizingly close to perfect season by the Pats that came just a few points short to Good Eli and the Gents in Super Bowl 42, the entire complexion of the 2009 season inexorably changed with the loss of Tom Brady in the first few minutes of this year. For eleven games Brett was Favre and all was magical; then it wasn’t. The San Diego team looked like the Clippers for the first twelve games, then they caught lightning and were Chargers on into the playoffs where they again went Norval. When it was all said and done, it was the Stillers and the Cardinals, yes the Arizona freaking Cardinals, left standing. And, thus, here we are.

Who are the Arizona Cardinals’ fans? I’m not quite sure, but I appear to live in the town that houses almost all of what few there are of them. Oh, and even here I have not noticed the whole town being painted red and buildings redecorated in team colors and insignias like it was purple for Barkley and the Suns in 1993 and the Diamondbacks in 2001. Da birdz de rojo get no respect I tell ya. And if all that were not bad enough, now That One is climbing on the dogpile,

Q. The Steelers or Cardinals, sir?

THE PRESIDENT: I have to say, you know, I wish the Cardinals the best. Kurt Warner is a great story and he’s closer to my age than anybody else on the field, but I am a long-time Steelers fan. Mr. Rooney, the owner, was just an extraordinary supporter during the course of the campaign. Franco Harris was campaigning for me in Pittsburgh. So Read more

Trash Talk: Phred's Hubcap for a Steal!!

hubcap-flames.thumbnail.jpgPhred skipped town and forgot to take the hubcap she won last week, so you all have a chance to win it off of her while she’s not looking. (She did, however, leave her picks behind–going with the home teams–so you still all have her picks, if not her trash, to contend with.)

Before we get to the Conference Championship games, though, I have to send my apologies to masaccio for stealing his Defensive Coordinator. My apologies, too, to Jim Schwartz. As Mitch Albom put it, this is where "coaches come to die."

Schwartz, 42, with an economics degree from Georgetown and 10 years in the Titans organization, is, by all accounts, a very smart guy. He inherits the worst team of all time. So you might ask how smart can he be? He said recently he never shrinks from a challenge. But he might want to tiptoe back a few steps and put Detroit in perspective.

Because here is what he walked into: This team is very thin in talent. It has no discernible leaders. It has a leftover defeatist attitude that found a home in many a locker. There are players here who will be going on their third or fourth Detroit coach with no success.

That doesn’t inspire confidence.

More importantly, Schwartz has agreed to work for an owner who has shown no gift for football wisdom, and for a two-headed front office that has been here through season after season of failure.

Mmmmm. Self-flagellating trash talk!!

So. Now onto the teams that won some games this year.

Atrios’ Eagles at bmaz’ Cardinals: Hahahaha! Did you see that? bmaz‘ Cardinals?? What better way to drive bmaz nuts, then to make him root for the home team. Before I do any analysis, let me just ruin the ending. The Cards have to lose this weekend. bmaz is–finally–beginning to believe in Cardinals magic, so you just know he’s going to get the failure to execute he’s been predicting for the last several weeks.

Now, mr. ew just announced to me that our next dog will be named Fitzgerald (McCaffrey the MilleniaLab is named after the Broncos’ Eddie McCaffrey). That was some unbelievable play from Larry Fitzgerald last week. And, as I said last week (even while picking them to lose), the Cardinals all of a sudden found a defense and their Edge. Read more

Trash Talk: The Return of the Hubcap!

chevy-hubcap.jpg

bmaz hasn’t given out a hubcap yet this year, so I’ve wrested control of the trash reins from him to offer up this shiny hupcap for the person(s) who correctly predicts this weekend’s winners.

Before I get into my choices, though, I gotta congratulate JimWhite’s Gators on a superb game on Thursday. Actually, I’d like to congratulate freep’s Sooners, too, even if they’re in Norm Coleman recount land. It was a great game, but–as should happen–some kickass defense won the game.

Also, WTF are the Brownies thinking, hiring Mangy Mangini? I kind of like liked the Brownies in recent years.  Yet they had to go replace a consummately likeable BillBel protege–Romeo Crennel–with the snitch who tried to turn Brett Favre into a hand-off machine? Really? Well, I guess that’ll make it easier for me to decide which of the several excellent teams in the AFC North to cheer for next year.

BAL-TEN: (Tennesee won in Baltimore in week 5, 13-10) Speaking of which, I’m predicting the hot Ravens will beat masaccio’s Titans today. This is the game that pits experience (Collins) against youth (Flacco), and two great defenses against each other. In the end, I think the game will be close, but after you add in the touchdown that Ed Reed seems to believe he’s entitled to each week, the Ravens will pull out ahead.

ARI-CAR: (Panthers beat the Cardinals in Arizona 27-23 in week 8 ) My bet against bmaz’s home team was the only thing that sunk me last week, but I feel much safer this week in rooting against the Cards. Yeah, the Cards have discovered they have a Hall of Fame caliber runner they’ve been ignoring. Yeah, the Cards showed some superb D last week–and I do think that D will be able to somewhat contain Carolina’s running game. But I just got a feeling that the Panthers–and not either of the NFC East teams–will be heading to the Super Bowl this year. Steve Smith will make a couple of big plays against the Cards, which will lead them to obsess over him and leave Mushin Mohammed open to keep a lot of drives alive. Plus, Carolina is at home and Arizona is away–two more strikes against the Cardinals.

PHI-NYG:  (The home team lost each of the regular season match-ups, with Giants winning 36-31 in week 10, and the Eagles winning 20-14 in week 14) I’m tempted to say the Eagles will win this. Read more

Trash Talk – Getaway Week

The Phoenix Suns once, thrice actually, had a coach named Cotton Fitzsimmons. A wonderful man, and a great coach (10th winningest coach in NBA history actually). Cotton was a diminutive man with outsized character; he may be one of the only men in history that could consistently put Charles Barkley in his place, and it was with such charm that Chuck loved him like a father. Anyway, Cotton had this theory that it was always important to win "getaway games". And Cotton defined getaway games as the last home game before a big road trip or the last game before the playoffs. He always wanted to roll into tough situations on a positive note. Smart man.

Well, this is the last week of the regular season in the National Favre League, and for those teams headed to the playoffs, or trying desperately to get into the playoffs, we got some getaway games. Eli, Coughlin and the Giants showed what it meant last year to play hard on a getaway game in the last week, even when you are already in the playoffs and it won’t affect your seeding. Even though they lost to the Patriots, they played their hearts out and left every ounce on the field. What they gained from that effort propelled them all the way to the Lombardi Trophy. Oh, and don’t miss today’s video, it is some excellent getaway music.

Fish at Jets and Pats at Bison: Let’s be honest, this is all one big game, and it is going to be for all the marbles. If the Dolphins win, they win the East and they are in the playoffs; if they lose and the Bills beat the Pats, the Jets are in. If the Jets win and the Pats win, the Pats are the East champs. Even if the Dolphins win, the Pats can get in as a wildcard if the Ravens lose to Jacksonville. The Jets get in as a wildcard if they win and the Pats beat Buffalo, so long as the Ravens lose. I really, and I mean really, hate to say this, but I think the Dolphins will beat the Jets, the Pats will beat the Bills, and the Ravens, being the home team, will beat the Jags. This, sadly, means that Brett, the Jets and the Pats all go home. Totally sucks, but that is Read more

Trash Talk – Prime Time Edition

The penultimate week to the regular season schedule in the National Favre League is upon us and, as many of you have already discovered, the hostess’s team is playing the janitor’s team. Yep, bmaz’s Arizona Cardinals (I don’t really claim the losers, but they are my home team) are visiting Marcy’s gridiron heroes, the Patriots. Apparently there are other games being played too. But, before we get to that….

Did you know that Brett Favre got more votes in Minnesota than Coleman and Franken? Yep, it is true. Has to be true, I saw it on that whiz kid Nate Silver’s site, and the dude has been right on about everything else. Nate says Brett cleaned out teh "Lizard People" too (I guess that means he beat Richard Shelby, Bob Corkass and friends, the "lizard liars"). Okay, so it was for President that Favre beat Coleman and Franken, and it was just a write in, but Brett Favre kicked their ass! Just like he is gonna do to the Seahawks Sunday!

Well, now that we have covered the Minnesota Election Trash, let us get back in our normal groove. By popular request, this week’s musical selection is from The Tubes, a pretty cool two song set (Prime Time and TV Is King) from some German TeeVee show patterned after American Bandstand or something. In their prime, The Tubes were an outrageously good band and put on a wild live show.

And now, for the games.

NATIONAL FAVRE LEAGUE: Well, as previously mentioned, there appears to be an American football contest going on up in New England. And, yes, EW is already beating me and the hapless Cardinals down. Go figure. Listen, first off, I didn’t pick these losers, they came here against my will. I actually participated in an effort to beg Jerry Colangelo, then owner of the Suns (later the Diamondbacks too) to start an expansion team here. But nooooo, the pissant Cardinals wanted a new stadium in St. Louis and was using Phoenix as leverage to get it. The fuckers in St. Louis called their bluff and they freaking moved here. Arrrggghhh! Oh well, they are all mine now. Lucky me. The Patriots, on the other hand, since the turn of the century, have turned into Lombardi’s Packers. They are big, bad, ruthless and good.

The Cards have no running Read more

Trash Talk – The Axe Starts To Fall Edition

I’m snakebit. Am driving down the road Saturday afternoon listening to NPR’s Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me when the first crushing blow occurs. The guest is CIA head honcho Michael Hayden, and the interview is actually superb. Seriously. Then I realize the dude has a great sense of humor; another blow to my world. Now comes the clincher; Hayden is from Pittsburgh and is a lifelong diehard Steelers fan. The host asks him what he thinks of Bill Belichick secretly taping other teams (Hayden is non-plussed by this) and then asks "Well, we know the NSA has secret tapes of everything, surely you must have some of the Patriots’ practices and plays, have you ever thought about covertly sending them to the Steelers"? Hayden quips back "Naw, the Steelers don’t need to cheat to whip the Patriots!" Now, between laughing my ass off and trying to grab my phone to obligatorily call Marcy and prick her with this nugget, I nearly run off the freaking road. Then, in all the inordinate joy of relating this wondrous story to EW, I blow by a photo radar setup. Go figure. Still, it all seems worth it.

Okay, enough hilarity; time to get down to business. Three weeks left in the season, it’s go time baby. There are teams that are going to solidify their hold on a playoff position, and there are teams that are going to start falling victim to the axe. Here’s the rundown:

Steelers at Ravens: Yep, the game of the week is the Chief Spook’s Stillers against the Baltimore Not Colts. Both teams are on strong late season rolls, and they have the top two defenses in the league with Pittsburgh number one and the Ravens number two. Rookie Joe Flacco has been excellent and the Ravens are uncharacteristically scoring a lot of points. Even though the Ravens have Ray Lewis, it is really hard to go against Ben Roethlisberger. But I’m going to. Ravens win at home.

Giants at Cowboys: In Dallas, Jerry Jones has finally got the sideshow freak circus he has been angling for all these years. As Condiliar would say, "Who could have imagined?" Yeah, well, they are going to have to take time off from the carnival to play Eli and the Gents, who have a little theater Read more

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