Saturday, May 16, 2015

Cavs clincher demands satisfaction

This guy! 
Thursday night's semifinal series finisher putting the Cavaliers over the bastard-tough Bulls was by no means the most exciting Cleveland sports victory I've ever witnessed. It had no moments that will be burned into the brain forever, like Kenny Lofton sprinting home from second on a passed ball or LeBron James historically dropping 25 straight points on the Pistons. 

What the win did bring was a warm feeling of satisfaction, which may end up becoming more fulfilling than a few "I remember when" highlights. This Cavs squad has overcome a post-season filled with adversity. Really, it's been a season of strife and injury woes, of newbie coaches on the hot seat and silly TMZ-worthy non-stories about superstar players writing passive-aggressive tweets about their teammates. Remember when the Cavs were 19-20, James was rehabbing in Miami, and rumors of David Blatt's firing were sizzling across the newswires?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Charles and Kenny pick the Bulls to beat the Cavs

So I work in the advertising media industry, and this isn't my forum to talk about work. No, this is where I vent about sports with my friends, or at least used to before Twitter became much easier to do regularly...

...but Wednesday morning I was in New York at the Turner Networks upfront. It was hosted by an obviously unprepared and half assed (yet completely awesome) Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, Shaquille O'Neal, and a very much prepared Ernie Johnson.

In between introducing all the new shows on all the Turner networks, and the ad execs and TV stars (Hey, it's the Impractical Jokers!) the four at the desk gave their color (and in the case of Sir Charles, off-color) commentary.

Keep in mind this was after game 5, so the Cavs were up 3-2. EJ asked the panel for their NBA Champion predictions, and after quite a bit of stalling (awesome Barkley quote: "I'm no expert"), Charles said the Bulls would be champs. Kenny agreed. (Shaq picked the Warriors.)

Not sure if they're making the same predictions on the air, but at least one dorky soul in the audience was booing.

That same soul is typing this on a bus on the way to the United Center right now.

Go Cavs.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Eight years later, Cavs fans are witnesses again

Eight years ago, I showed up at Game One of a Cavs playoff series (pretty sure it was the first round Wizards matchup, but not sure), and just past the ticket taker, someone gave me (and the other 20,000 fans) a black shirt with WITNESS written on it in white. The only clue what it was for was the little Nike swoosh on it. It wasn't until just before tipoff that the fans were tipped off, and the iconic Nike Lebron James Witness campaign was born.

Unfortunately, that shirt ended up in the garbage after The Decision three years later, but nonetheless, we are witnessing something special yet again. The way the Cavaliers have been playing over the past three months, nobody is expecting anything less than a Finals appearance.

And I'm expecting to witness more. I want Lebron to hold that trophy in a Cavs uniform. I want Love and Blatt to shut the national media up. 

All I want is one before I die.

Go Cavs.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Browns introduce new logo, much ado about nothing

Ever since the Browns sent a cryptic email to their Backers' clubs last week teasing a new "rebranded" logo, there has much much panic in the street. Would they add a logo to the helmet? Would they get rid of Brownie the Elf? Would they accentuate Brownie the Elf? Would they use a sad picture of Paul Brown? Would they change their colors to Wine and Gold?

Well, the changes are in this morning. Hold on to your pants, because they are groundbreaking. 

Actually, no. they're not.

Flatter design. Yay. Just like every mobile phone screen out there, like Android Material Design or iOS design . A brighter orange. Not sure if the Browns front office just updated their iPhonesor what, but seems like they took some inspiration from there.

Not that excited, not that annoyed. It's just fine. The brown facemasks are the most interesting part of the whole logo, and could have slipped under the radar. I imagine they will be part of the uniform redesign we see in April.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Vox Lox: Super Sunday 2015

I came off the bench three weeks ago, colder than Paulie and Christopher at Pine Barrens, and promptly stole an ATM, filled it with manure, and dropped it on your bookie. Hadn't handicapped a game since NFL week one, but that wouldn't prevent the Vox from releasing his biggest play in over fourteen months- a 4-dime lock on the Cowboys. My bookmaker sees Vox on his Caller ID and he's already laying off my action in his head. Can't blame him. We came within a field goal of sweeping the entire weekend against the spread. Unfortunately, nowadays, I don't drop words or wagers as much I should. My contributions to society as a parent, salesman, teacher, coach and ex-husband prevent me from investing time into my two notorious passions, but SuperBowl Sunday is always my annual confluence of gambling and writing. Some history: 364 days ago, I plucked the underdog Seahawks for two dimes and broke up with Cavs. The year prior, I begrudgingly backed the Ratbirds in the Harbaugh Bowl. In 2011, I hit on my biggest bet ever- a Fergalicious 10-Dimer hunch-play on the Packers. And in my first ever SB release for CST, I virtually nailed the exact score. I own this game, yes, but I am human...and lost two dimes on the Patriots in 2012 on the day I counted off the Ten Sexiest Men Alive.

I just wanna use your love tonight
Speaking of sexy- what an effortless transition- hello, Tom Brady--the last Wolverine QB to win in Ohio Stadium and America's favorite sports enemy. An aloof and enigmatic cross between 1990s Christian Laettner and Manchester United-era David Beckham, Brady surely must've inked a deal with the devil--because his looks, talent and accomplishments translate to this generation's Joe Montana. But while Montana was revered across every NFL city, Brady is ridiculed. He's become Darth Vader to Belichick's Emperor and is generally despised outside of Massachusetts. However, around the mid-way point of Brady's career, I stopped fighting my feelings for him. I once wrote that Tom is "spiritually easy," but after he erased two-touchdown deficits TWICE in their division round victory over Baltimore, I finally grasped why Brady is so irresistible to my football palate. 

See, for fifteen years, Clevelanders have been condemned to a modified version of the NFL. Games are rarely enjoyable, largely because our offense sets the standard for failure and folly. While scraping the ice off my car on dark Monday mornings, only fifteen hours removed from the latest Browns debacle, I've often wondered if Cleveland is the earthly-version of Hell. Should I be so helplessly immersed in a tradition that offers no healthy reciprocation? After four months of that shit, I'm beat-down and weak. Enter playoff weekends in January, and Brady restores and refreshes my faith in football. He magically throws to small, undefended spaces across the field and occasionally slits the secondary's throat with a calculating scramble or sneak into the endzone. First comes the Brady fist pump after the winning score, then fast forward to the final moments of a New England win, and you'll find the Foxborough faithful crooning The Outfield's "Your Love." Gives me goosebumps every time...and I curse my great, great grandfather's brother, NathanVox of Radzilow Poland, for taking the train to the CLE when Boston was surely much closer.


Patriots (pick) over Seattle, 4 Dimes

Divisional Round: 3-1, +6 Dimes
Season: 5-3, +6 Dimes
Vox CST SuperBowl Record Against the Spread: 4-2, +12 Dimes
Career: 147-127-14, +41 Dimes