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Archive for April, 2008

Ups and Downs of the NHL Playoffs

PhotobucketThis article has been submitted by Ian Cass.

Both my second year of university and the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs are now in the books. Even though I can’t say the same for my exams, I can’t complain at all about the action we saw in round one. There were nine overtime games, three game sevens, and the Sens got a good old-fashioned ass whooping. There were some great performances and some unlikely heroes, and also some disappointments. To recap the first round, I have put together a list of the “Top 10 Ups” and the “Top 10 Downs” from round one.
More after the jump!

How Badly? Video of the Day

Doesn’t look like I’ll be live-blogging any soccer today, so I decided to go with a soccer-themed VoD. This is Nike’s new Football commercial. I thought it was pretty cool. Y’kno, for a bunch of ugly guys who don’t speak English…

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=64A-UzOno74&hl=en]

Gary Roberts Wednesday - Zydrunas Ilgauskas

PhotobucketThis article has been submitted by Stu Wilkinson.

A lot of people talk about how brutal LeBron’s supporting cast is. For the most part, they wouldn’t be wrong. Let’s check out the three highest paid players on Cleveland this year: Ben Wallace, James, and Wally World Szczerbiak (you can officially forget that he was an All-Star in the 2001-02 season). Not exactly your prototypical group of “triplets.” However, there is one giant of a man on the Cavs that is a valuable piece of what will almost definitely be a puzzle that gets back to the NBA Finals. You guessed it, this man is the often-overlooked Zydrunas Ilgauskas. They call him Big Z, and if he lived in a child’s bedroom he would cause six nightmares per night, compared to only three for Sam Cassell and eighteen for Alex Ovechkin (or the guy from “Jaws” and “Happy Gilmore”).
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Unfinished Blog Ideas

This article has been submitted by Alex Jackson.

There’s a lot more to blogging than just mad bling, off-the-hook parties, 18-inch rims and doing lines off of strippers. No, blogging is a hard-knock-life; despite what Blake might have told you, blogging is not glamorous. Honestly, it’s hard. Not everyone is cut out to do it.
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What an Email…

This article has been submitted by Alex Jackson.

I will keep this nice and short. The other day I got an email from an organization affiliated with the Phoenix Suns, Downtown Live. As a “favored member,” this organization alerts me about Suns ticket deals, wishes me happy birthday, gives me access to playoff presales and other perks that I would be all over if, A) I lived in Phoenix and B) I had a job. I’ve been a member for about 10 years now, as I like keeping my pulse on what’s happening in Maricopa County.

The other day, an email from Downtown Live appeared in my inbox. The subject line? “Hey Alex, Wanna Win a Championship Ring?”

With the NBA playoffs on the horizon, I assumed it was a rallying cry for Suns fans, something to get us pumped up. Yes! I want the Suns to win the ‘ship! Damn straight!

I open it up, what do I see?

BLING! BLING! WIN A CHAMPIONSHIP RING!
Photobucket

Yes, the Phoenix Mercury are giving away a WNBA Championship Ring at their home opener. I’m not a great evaluator of “success,” but too me, this seems like an act of desperation. Just thought I’d share…

This article has been submitted by Alex Jackson.

Jays/Royals Series Review

Scott RolenThis is going to be a quick one because I moved home from Kingston yesterday and really haven’t gotten settled in or anything yet. Thus, I’m on a junk computer for the time being. Additionally, I’m still unpacking and exhausted from alcohol, and I’m a little too excited for the Raptors game tonight to think about anything else.

Now, that’s a whole lot of excuses for something that’s really not a big deal, so I’ll get into it shortly, but I wanted to make everyone aware: The Raptors can still win this series. Sure, 3-1 is a big hole and at times they’ve looked awful, but I still contend that when the right lineup is on the floor, the Raps are a better team than the Magic. We’ll see tonight, I guess. Speaking of the right lineup…

Big kudos to John Gibbons for being willing to shake the order up. This is actually a benefit of losing Frank Thomas, who can only hit 4th or 5th, because now everyone in our top-7 has the flexibility to hit just about anywhere in the order. I’ve been upset with Gibbons in the past for too many small lineup tweaks (and this is still the case, to a degree), but a wholesale change to try and shake the offense out of a slump is commendable. It worked out, too. More on that in a second.
More after the jump!

The Champions League Semi-Finals, 1st Leg Recap

PhotobucketThis articled has been submitted by the debuting Mostafa “Mo Cash” El Beheiry.

It’s been awhile since the ODC was graced with an update on Europe’s premier club competition, the UEFA Champions League, which is now in its semi-final stages. Four teams have emerged from the last two knockout rounds, some gracefully and some with a bit of luck as they try to prove their claim as Europe’s best soccer club. In the quarter-finals, the English Premier League’s Liverpool FC dispatched league rival Arsenal FC (with a little help from the officials) and meet fellow English club Chelsea FC in the semis, who shakily eliminated Turkish underdogs Fenerbaçhe SK. England has one more semi-final representative in Manchester United who breezed past Italy’s injury plagued AS Roma and go on to face the Catalan giants of FC Barcelona, who were shown too much respect from zee Germans, FC Schalke 04 (founded in 1904 by German school boyz). The first legs of these semi-final matches were played out earlier this week, and here’s what happened.
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Forgotten Celebrations

PhotobucketThis article has been submitted by Chris Pope.

The NHL changed the rules in their game to create more scoring in hope that fans would start watching more hockey. I, for one, love a 7-6 game as much as I love a 1-0 game, with the exception of one thing. Dirty cellys. I’m not talking about the basic hands in the air screaming, I’m talking the celebrations where there is some thought put into it. Alex Ovechkin is a prime example of someone in the league who absolutely loves to score and shows it in his celebrations.

I know Don Cherry doesn’t like when players showboat after they sniped a rocket, bar and in, but I do. I would love to see the same enthusiasm put into celebrations for open net goals that go into celebrations for game winning goals. I would also like to see more controversial celebrations because everyone seems to be doing the fist pump and jumping into the glass. So here are the top-5 forgotten about celebrations that we as hockey fans should be seeing every night in the NHL.
More after the jump!

Just Don't Give A… Video of the Day

K-Mart….wow. That’s almost as stupid a rant as calling a certain King overrated.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UdtdPjCuqVU&hl=en]

The ODC Mailbag!!

Youve Got MailBefore I jump right into the first ever On Deck Circle Mailbag, I thought I’d introduce the article by paraphrasing the great Silky Johnson, he of Player Hater’s Ball fame, not that handsome guy that lives in Brantford. So, to begin…

“First of all, I wanna thank God for giving everybody so much time to waste, and me so much work to put off to help them waste it. I hate you, I hate you, and I don’t even know you and I hate your guts, Professor. I hope all of the bad things in life happen to teachers and nobody else but teachers. And as I sit here in Douglas Library, sipping a Tim Horton’s coffee that the girl in the J-Duc didn’t stir, I just wanna say school can kiss my ass in two weeks. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna put down my Pharmacology 100 notes, put some water in Alex Jackson’s momma’s dish, and answer some mailbag questions. Good luck studying, tricks!”

How did I determine who made the Mailbag? Well, despite an overwhelming amount of questions (thanks everyone, seriously appreciate it), almost every question made the Mailbag. Only those who sent in multiple questions didn’t have them all answered. So…this thing is a little long, and I worked on it over a few days at the library, taking study breaks here and there while learning about marijuana, steroids, and other wonderful drugs. If you are self-centered (or, dedicated to school work/getting laid/anything else useful), just hit Ctrl+F, type in your name, and you’ll find your question answered, because there is otherwise no rhyme nor reason to the order. With few exceptions, all of the questions were pulled out of a Ziploc bag or Dodgers hat. Let’s get on with it. Note: I seriously recommend reading this with a large coffee or in installments, because it’s pretty long. It’s also pretty awesome, though, so definitely read it.
More after the jump!