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Is Great Sportswriting Becoming a Thing of the Past?

Posted by on Nov 1, 2015 in Blog, Essays | 3 comments




The first book I remember reading from cover to cover was a prematurely scripted ten-year history of the Dallas Cowboys during their formative years of the 1960’s.

Dallas Cowboys”  Pro or Con?,” penned by the late Dallas Morning News sportswriter Sam Blair, was released in 1970.  It’s long since out of print, and beyond dated.  To give some perspective, this is a book that came out during the first year Monday Night Football went on the air.  Nonetheless, almost 45 years after being absorbed by the narrative, passages of the book remain imprinted upon my conscious, leaving lasting memories which has instilled great affection for traditions that remain with me to this day.  Why so?

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NFL Week 8: Picks and Predictions

Posted by on Oct 31, 2015 in Blog, Essays | 2 comments


Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi is carried off Lambeau Field on the shoulders of fullback Jimmy Taylor, left, and Paul Hornung after winning the NFL championship from the Cleveland Browns 23-12 in Green Bay, Wis., on Jan. 2, 1966. (AP Photo)






NET GAIN/LOSS:  + $667.


LAST WEEK:  16 — 8 — 0 (+$1,440)


This week, I’m posting a “modified” teaser wheel.  What this means is, one anchor team gets chosen and then is wheeled with many other teams.  However, I’m tossing out the bad number situations, and ill-advised teasers across the zero (pick).  So, I’m not teasing the entire board, just the situations that I think are favorable.

Regarding criticism of this strategy, I’m the first to acknowledge that teasers aren’t as appealing as several years ago when the games were lower scoring and more balanced.  The league instituted rule changes which now hinder defenses (especially pass defense) and allow offenses to pretty much get away with anything.  This has created higher-scoring games and more variance, which in turn has reduced the advantages that teasers once provided.  Some even insist that teasers shouldn’t be played at all, given that 6 points (the typical teaser margin) is no longer enough points to make them viable.

Nonetheless, I’m still convinced that teasing superior teams down to the prospect of “just win the game” remains worthy of consideration in some spots.  This week’s Tampa Bay-Atlanta matchup appears to be just such a situation, with one team coming off a demoralizing road loss and traveling again, versus a 6-1 team at home that hasn’t played well the last two weeks, but should be motivated here.

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Why the Republican Debate Question About Daily Fantasy Sports Deserved to be Answered (but Wasn’t)

Posted by on Oct 29, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Politics | 2 comments




It wasn’t just Daily Fantasy Sports which lost a rare chance to shine in a national spotlight and be taken seriously as a legitimate political issue during last night’s Republican Presidential Debate, which was held in Boulder, CO.

We all lost.  

That’s right.  Every proponent of legalized and regulated sports betting and online poker/gambling in America missed out on the golden opportunity to hear each and every major candidate on that stage being required to make an official statement when it comes to the freedom of individuals to make their own choices and then justify their position in front of millions of viewers and voters, about half of which are estimated to have gambled within just the past year.

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Fracking the Media: Can We Have TOO MANY Different News Sources?

Posted by on Oct 27, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 1 comment




Fracking the Media:  Does shrinking and therefore dividing news sources sabotage our common understanding of reality and impede compromise?  Might this spell the end of democracy?

Writer’s Note:  Today’s essay is a continuation somewhat of yesterday’s topic, “Are Twitter and Facebook Flaming Out?” which can be read HERE.

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Are Twitter and Facebook Flaming Out?

Posted by on Oct 26, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 5 comments




A thought-provoking essay appeared today online, “Why Twitter’s Dying (And What You Can Learn From It),” authored by Umair Haque.  I urge everyone to read it.  If accurate (and I believe it is), the future doesn’t portend very well for traditional social media outlets, particularly the two most popular platforms in the United States — Twitter and Facebook.

In his essay, Haque describes Twitter as what was once the embodiment of a Utopian promise, that an instantly-accessible open global town square would become the centrifuge for creative thoughts and new ideas which could be freely expressed, without censorship nor commercial viability.  Posts could be compressed into a single, easily-digestible cliffnote of just 140 characters, be blasted out, and then receive instant feedback.  Presumably, one’s own devoted army of followers serve both as a sounding board and a filter to the vast greater universe beyond.  Post something truly profound, and it just might get re-tweeted into the thousands.

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Dear England: “We apologize.” — Signed, America

Posted by on Oct 25, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Sports Betting | 2 comments




Dear England:

You deserve much better than this.  You really do.

You once gave America greatness.  You shipped us your icons.  You gave us the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, and the Who.  We returned the favor by sending you the Miami Dolphins, Detroit Lions, Oakland Raiders, and Jacksonville Jaguars.

Talk about getting shafted!  Somebody in this exchange got screwed royally, and it has nothing to do with your old blue-haired Queen.  By the way, is she still alive?

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Steve Jobs Peeled Down to His Core (Movie Review)

Posted by on Oct 24, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Movie Reviews | 0 comments




Irrefutable genius.  Jerk.  Innovator.  Opportunist.  Delinquent dad.  Visionary.  Narcissist.  Man-child.  Entrepreneur.  Asshole.

All those descriptions (and then some) fit Steve Jobs.  In spite of, and to some degree due to his premature death in 2011, he endures as both a metamorphic icon and a cultural myth.  Jobs’ unbridled energy combined with his uncompromising ingenuity led to a transformation in how the world works and plays — be it on iMacs or iPods, iPhones or iPods, or Macintosh desktops and laptops.  But for all his cutting-edge high-tech marvels and toys, which included a number of failures along the way, it was Jobs’ grandiose, almost naive idealistic vision of our world — that technology should serve humanity rather than the other way around — which has become his everlasting legacy.  Arguably, Jobs transformed the daily lives of more people, in more ways, than anyone who’s lived since Thomas Edison.

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“Poker Night in America” Returning to Seminole Hard Rock

Posted by on Oct 23, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments





“Poker Night in America”​ Returns to Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida During the “Rock ‘n’ Roll Poker Open”  November 19 – December 2, 2015

Popular Television Show Set to Feature High-Stakes Cash Games, Ladies Night III, and $2 Million Guaranteed Championship


Hollywood, Florida (Oct. 21, 2015) — Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino will host the television show “Poker Night in America,” which is broadcast weekly on the CBS Sports Network and other cable channels.  This will mark the third such partnership since first collaborating in 2014.  The popular TV series will primarily feature action from the “Rock n’ Roll Poker Open,” taking place Nov. 19 through Dec. 2.

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