Friday, December 12, 2008
It's times like these that I wish I had spent more time working on my fastball and less time on "i before e except after c."
On a positive note, the World Baseball Classic is returning in 2009. I really like the idea behind this, and I hope that the tv networks get their coverage right this time around. The last time it was held, in 2006, nearly half of the games were presented with abbreviated video. However, the advent of the MLB Network gives me hope. Competiton drives invention and a desire to succeed. Hopefully, ESPN will use this as a chance to deliver a better tv product this time around. In other words, show the whole game or don't show it at all!
The wonderful folks up in Bristol (ESPN) broke a story today on their Outside the Lines program that made me laugh. Apparently there is only one thing Republicans & Democrats can agree on, college football needs a playoff. And they want to do something about it. The planned legislation does not specify how the playoff system would be implemented, but it is clear on one thing: The BCS needs to go. It seems anyone who has watched one snap of college football has an idea of how to fix the BCS mess. Most will cite the March Madness college basketball tournament as a reason for why the playoff is needed for football. March Madness is one of the most lucrative tv contracts in all of sports and is currently owned by CBS. The network does a tremendous job of promoting, televising, and analyzing the games since they picked up the contract for the games in 1991. Nearly 20 years later, the Madness has thrived on CBS and the station has become synoymous with the March basketball.
Now, imagine if in 2010 when ESPN picks up the rights to the BCS that instead, we have a playoff system in place. The possiblities of some of those useless bowl games actually mattering would have fans salivating. Now, I have a reason to tune in for the Allstate Sugar Bowl because a team's chances of winning a National Championship will be ended within 4 quarters of play. It gives those games a sense of importance and urgency, which are two things sports thrive on. Why else would fans wish for a Game 7 in other sports?
Who would have thought I would agree with congress on something? The playoff system is long overdue for college football. There should be no guess work in determining the National Champion. No one wants to share the throphy. And congress is going to make sure that no one has to share a throphy again.
I was deeply disappointed to hear that Petty Enterprises has released 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup Champion Bobby Labonte amid concerns of no sponsorship. Times are tough, especially when one of the crowned jewels of the sport is forced to merge with another team just to make ends meet. The year 2009 will not be a kind one to NASCAR; I certainly hope Brian France has a plan to keep teams afloat this season, or we may be left watching Hendrick Motorsports battle Roush-Fenway Racing for the championship. Oh wait, we already did. Oh well.
Another sad note for NASCAR fans, the Wood Brothers team, another staple of the Cup Series garage for over 50 years, announced plans earlier this week to cut its racing schedule drastically. They will no longer run a full season, and their plans for the Truck Series have also been put into question. I hope this is not a sign of things to come for NASCAR, but with two of the most legendary teams in desperate trouble things do not look promising. Looks like Jimmie Johnson's road to the 4 in a row is going to be easier than previously thought.
Thanks for stopping by, and next time wipe your freaking feet off on the door mat!
Friday, December 5, 2008
The other great feature added to the squared circle is the use of abilities. Last year, every superstar had two fighting styles that determined what abilities they had. This presented a huge problem, with superstars doing moves and acting in ways they never would! (When is the last time you saw Jeff Hardy bust himself open with a chair to show he's hardcore?) This has been remedied as each superstar has up to six abilities. They can be something simple like the ability to double stack tables or something more complex and character specific like stealing an opponents finisher. And the A.I. is much more refined than ever before. Big Show won't go for top rope moves like a cruiserweight, Rey Mysterio takes to the air in ways that will leave you scratching your head. It really adds to the value of this game.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Who do you think would win? And BTW, no one is allowed to cite the movie "Return of the Dragon!"
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Get used to seeing this, often.
First off, if you're a PS3 owner, get the game and let it install immediately, because it takes at least 20 minutes. Yeah, I thought that was crazy myself. The game opens with a really cool video highlighting TNA Wrestling and is well worth a watch. Then, you get to the main menu. All the obvious options are there, and I would strongly recommend you go to the Options menu and watch the training videos, especially if you're a WWE gamer such as myself. These controls take some time getting used to! There's a button for kicks, a button for punches, a "strong modifer," and of course a counter button. The problem is, the basic buttons are easy to use, but if you want to use more than 4 moves in your very limited moveset, you have to look at the instruction manual and figure out which buttons to press and which direction to move the left stick in. The ease of execution for finishers saves the control scheme (simply lock up and hit the O button).
Who reads a newspaper these days?
With any wrestling game, there are only two modes that anyone cares about: Story Mode & Create-A-Wrestler. And TNA iMPACT! melds the two together. (SPOILER ALERT!!! Story details are about to be revealed!) You start Story mode with a nice introduction of how your character, named Suicide, has been tearing it up in TNA, basically dominating all your opponents. Unfortunately, someone is unhappy with you, and demands that you take a dive in the next match for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. Obviously you don't and you meet the tag team LAX (Latin American Xchange). And by meet, I mean get beaten to within an inch of your life and left for dead in Mexico. No, I didn't just make that up.
Not another The Mummy movie!
Big Kev will watch your back in TNA. Sorta.
Just 3 TNA Stars Hanging Out.
Holy crap! The stage exploded!
Damn you, Sting!
Sting just had a stunning realization.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Alright, enough of that. What is going on in the NFL? Tom Brady's done for the season. And that means the Patroits are in deep trouble. I'm not going to judge Matt Cassel, New England's backup, because I have not watched him play. But I will say this, it is going to be a uphill climb for the AFC Champions for the rest of this season. It will be interesting to see how they fare the rest of the season. And if Cassel doesn't live up to expectations, I would not be surprised to see the Pats looking for a replacement QB on the trading block.
Aaron Rodgers deserves much better media than what he has got thus far. If I hear Rodgers compared to Favre one more time before season's end, my head may explode. How can you compare the two when one has not played a full season? Could someone please relay that message to the folks in Bristol? I'm going to spew nonsense about Rodgers being Favre-like in Green Bay because that is probably never going to happen again. Rodgers will be good, he will win some games, and he will do what Favre seems unable to do, shut up and play!
What happened in Cleveland? My Browns faced their team's mortality it would seem against the Dallas Cowboys. I have to admit, I picked the Brownies to lose that game (Kinda bittersweet, huh?) The problem is the problem the Browns have had since they returned in 1999, their defense sucks. And while offense wins games, defense wins championships. So until Cleveland puts together a defense that can get through an offensive line, were going to waiting a while for a championship in Cleveland. (You would think I would be a little more optimistic about the home team!)
NASCAR continues to put on some of the worst racing seen in many years with the Car of Tomorrow. The race at Richmond, the race before the chase, was so boring that I felt bad for everyone who braved Tropical Storm Hanna to see it. The racing probably would have been better had everyone raced for 400 laps instead of 25! This whole "save your stuff for the end" crap needs to end! Recently I went go-karting with my brother and my best friend and had a great time! Good speed, hard corners, and loose cars is a recipe for a good time in my book! Anyone who enjoys NASCAR or racing of any kind needs to get behind the wheel of one these things. But with all the fun, I did notice something wrong. There are rules at the track at was racing on:
1. No intentional bumping
2. No spinning
3. No cutting someone off
And if you didn't obey these rules, you were parked. Sound familiar? It should, because this is the same crap NASCAR drivers are dealing with now. My point, rules are fine, in moderation and with the idea that they be fluid. Bring back the old NASCAR! Oh, and support go-karting.
I would be remiss if I didn't mention that I had the misfortune of watching WWE Unforgiven, the most recent PPV. The event was held in my backyard in Cleveland, and I tried desperately to get tickets for the event. I'm so glad I didn't. There was so much that went wrong, from World Heavyweight Champion CM Punk losing his championship without even competing in a match; Chris Jericho getting beaten six ways from ugly and still having the ability to come out later in the show and win the World Heavyweight Championship; to Big Show beating the hell out of the Undertaker; and matches that just, well, sucked.
The only good thing to come out of that event was the Championship Scramble concept match. The rules to this match are convulted and tough to follow, but it basically boils down to this:
- 2 men start the match. Every 5 minutes a new superstar enters the ring until all 5 competitors are in the ring. The match last 20 minutes.
- A pin or submission names that person the "interim champion" of the match. He is not officially recognized as champion until the match ends, if he is the "interim champion" at its conclusion
- The "interim champion" does not have to be pinned or submit in order to lose his status.
Overall, the match was fun to watch, and presented some good exciting moments. Unfortunately, it was not enough to save this PPV. Please save your money and avoid this one at all costs.
Remember how I said I was not going to buy Madden 09 for the XBOX 360? Well, I didn't. I bought the "Collector's Edition" for the Playstation 3! Boo me all you want for that, but at least it didn't have Brett Favre on the cover! Another game that is on my watch list is WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2009 (no surprise there!). If you are a wrestling fan, head over to ign.com and checkout the exclusive content on this year's SvR game. Early reports look good, but we won't know for sure until the game's release in November.
One final note, I'm going to be experimenting with this blog over the next week or two to see what all blogger can do. So, if you notice some changes to this entry and they look a little weird, just know that they are intentional and will most likely be fixed.
Alright, that's all I've got for now. Thanks for reading, and as always, I'll try to get it right next time.
Friday, August 15, 2008
I'm intrigued by the build for this as it's another one of those times where WWE is trying to blur the line between fiction and reality. Both are very talented, and in line for a push (hopefully), so this match may reveal the future booking on SmackDown. With Triple H as the WWE Champion for the forseeable future, there's no reason to weaken one of the few heels on the blue brand. So, I'm going with MVP to win the match, and get a push to the WWE Title picture, so that Triple H has fresh blood at the next PPV.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Saturday, July 5, 2008
Since it's incredibly late as I write this, I just wanted to mention a few things I noticed this July 4th that made me go, What The Hell?
1. I actually watched the infamous Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest on ESPN. No, I don't know why. No, I'm not a fan of Kobayashi, but I watched it nonetheless. And as I watched I noticed the announcers were getting more excited than a wrestling announcer during the main event. Seriously, they were eating hot dogs and the announcer's acting like the eaters were saving someone's life! When it got to the "Dog Off" (their words, not mine), I thought the announcer was going to pass out! The guy calls the NHRA drag races where the cars reach crazy speeds, and he seems nearly comotose. But give him a hot dogger, and he's like a six-year-old at Christmas time.
2. My beloved Cleveland Indians are so far out of first they are no longer in the cellar. At least a cellar has a door to climb out of. No, this is more like a bottomless pit. They just keep falling, waiting to hit the bottom but it never comes. So, what do you do when you're free-falling? You get rid of dead weight, of course! So exit closer Joe Borowski, stage right. C.C. Sabathia, get your bags packed, because you're next.
3. Speaking of baseball, the Tampa Bay Rays are the best team in MLB. My readers, I'd like you to go back and read that last sentence again.
Alright, that's all I have for now. Stop back again for more rantings, sports-wise, and for good measure I may throw in some pro wrestling!