Monthly Archives: June 2015

Three is a Magic Number

Good for the NHL for changing up the overtime rules. Next season, OT will consist of five minutes of 3-on-3 hockey instead of 4-on-4. This should, and the key word is should, reduce the number of shootouts each season. It’s a good start, but if the NHL really wants to do away with shootouts (and I agree they should) they should think about making each regular season win count as three points instead of two.

The current point system in the NHL makes no sense. If you get a win, no matter when, you get two points. If you get to overtime and lose, no matter when, you get one point. So, some games see two points awarded and some see three points awarded. It’s and awkward way to handle games. International hockey figured this out a long time ago. Award three points in every game. If a team wins a game outright, they get all three. If it goes to overtime, the winning team gets two and the losing team gets one.

That makes sense and it also incentivizes teams to play for outright wins in regulation time. Currently, teams play a bit of a shutdown game when they are tied in the final minutes. They are content to get to OT and see what happens, rather than keep pushing for an outright win. Adding an extra point to the mix should change that dynamic. Teams, especially teams trying to make the playoffs, will grind it out until the final of regulation.

That would be great for fans and great for the NHL. Let’s hope they make that change soon.

LeBron Versus The World

I get it, for some people they will never be able to look at LeBron James and get past “The Decision”. It was a colossal mistake, an historic blunder, but it is your mistake if stops you from appreciating how great this guy is. The level of hate directed at LeBron makes no sense and it is time to simply sit back and enjoy what we are seeing.

DId you know that LeBron is the only non-Celtic in history to appear in five-straight NBA Finals? That’s a pretty amazing stat, but let’s talk about Sunday’s game. Consider the Cavaliers’ roster. It was built around a “Big Three” of LeBron, Kevin Love, and Kyrie Irving. Only LeBron is left standing at this point with the other two out for the season. This has forced Cleveland to adopt a somewhat unusual game plan. The ball gets inbounded to LeBron and he then figures it out. Last night wasn’t pretty, but he did it in a big way- 39 points, 16 rebounds, 11 assists and only three turnovers in 50 minutes of court time (50 minutes!) And don’t forget how good LeBron’s defense is.

Yes, the haters are right that even an average game from Curry sends this series back to Cleveland with the Cavs down 0-2, but that shouldn’t diminish what LeBron is doing. This is one of the greatest basketball players in history as an actual underdog. He will most likely fail. Golden State has way more talent and they are smartly trying to beat up LeBron as much as possible. But even if LeBron fails, this is glorious to watch. One man trying to will hit team to a championship. It’s the kind of story sports fans usually flock to. They just need to get past the hate.

Wake Up!

Hey did you know the NBA Finals start tonight? You probably forgot because the NBA hasn’t had a game in over a week. Thanks to a sweep and a 4-1 result, the Conference Finals ended on last Wednesday and we have been waiting for basketball to reappear since then.

I don’t really understand the delay. Why couldn’t the Finals have started Sunday? Or Monday? Or even Tuesday? (Wednesday was taken by the Stanley Cup, so I get that) Tuesday would have been an optimal date as they could have played Game 1 then, Game 2 tonight and Game 3 Sunday. (TV networks avoid Saturday night like the plague) The NBA released some sketchy statement about the impossibility of travel and hotel rooms.

It’s too bad because this is a compelling matchup. The Warriors with their magnificent team and great shooter versus LeBron trying to win Cleveland a championship for the first time in fifty-plus years. In fact, this matchup guarantees that we will have a tenth club join the list of NBA teams that have won a title since 1979. I’m excited, let’s get to it, but why did it take so damn long?