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Everything posted by Beech27

  1. Yeah. It's true that WM30 and all the surrounding aspects--road trip with friends, Bryan winning, getting ramp-side seats for RAW--will always be among the most fun times of my life. But it's also true that I haven't watched any WWE in roughly a couple years, and am so checked out I can't imagine going back.
  2. It sure seems like it would be best, booking-wise, to disentangle the G1 from WK, and let it stand as its own reward. But maybe the potential short-term hit in interest would be more significant than I expect, and maybe not all that short-term.
  3. I think Ospreay will be slotted in as a challenger to--and maybe winner of--one/both of the big heavyweight belts, at some point early next year. He and Ibushi have history, and he's been mostly kept away from Naito and White. (I'm not really stoked on this, but he has a faction now. Seems inevitable.)
  4. Jay White is really good, but I was invested in seeing some struggle for him before a redemption arc—of course, maybe that was never the plan. Also, Ibushi is basically the last wrestler I just cheer for to win, with no real critical lens applied. So I don’t love this. Also don’t love that it just seems messy for the sake of setting up back to back main events at WK. Obviously that has to be a consideration, but I feel like it’s an over-correction for the predictability of the briefcase.
  5. Someone needs to lose the breifcase eventually, but I think this is the time to show Jay fighting clean, and coming up just short. Assuming we are headed towards a face turn, he needs to face some adversity on that path, and commit anyway.
  6. This is the clearest summation I've seen.
  7. This is reductive and a little hot-takey, but the Nets feel like Clippers East, to me. I expect similarly breathless reporting about load management, promises they'll gel when it's time, and then "we knew all along the chemistry wasn't working" articles after a playoff exit.
  8. I have enough bandwagoner friends to make me loath to admit this, but doesn't the lack of home court make the Lakers' title more impressive, since they were deprived of an advantage every other previous number-one seed enjoyed? Next year will be interesting. Miami should grow into the role of conference favorites well, but I don't see them rolling the east easily. And out west, Denver is ascendant, Golden State should be back, and the Clippers might... but, probably not. But it's a deserved championship for the Lakers and LeBron, even if it's only one. Seeing Butler so clearly fatigued in game-six was a reminder how LeBron's endurance might be his most overwhelming athletic trait.
  9. Weird thing about Houston: They actually are among the league leaders in first and second down pass-rate, but are midpack when it comes to second and long. Suggests a lack of easy first down completions--if only one had a receiver who was good at that--and then foolishly chasing the sticks. (You're more likely to get a first down on 2 and 10 throwing twice than expending second down gaining two or three yards on a run.)
  10. There certainly aren’t many. The only such player I can think of is Clyde Lovellette, but the Lakers were in Minneapolis then, so I’m not sure it really counts.
  11. Following up on the earlier post (the original tweet is automatically included, so, sorry for the redundancy) because Andrew Yang isn't just commenting on wrestling, but has sourced scoops now.
  12. I've enjoyed most of KENOH's work as a NOAH main eventer, but yeah he'd probably work best bullying and being the perpetual heel ace of a junior division--only NOAH hasn't ever had much strength or focus, there. (Since KENTA and Marafuji, anyway.) Of course, this is exemplary of a modern trend in wresting. Size and style aside, if a wrestler is good enough, people want to see them as a heavyweight, because heavyweight has become shorthand for uppercard.
  13. An interesting angle on this matchup I hadn't though of--and didn't think of, but am stealing from Zach Lowe's preview: Bam is obviously Miami's best answer to AD. But if Davis is competent/confident from 3, Bam will have to abdicate rim protection duties, which means LeBron will attack. Given that, maybe you'd rather have him on Howard or McGee, when they're in. Regarding defending LeBron, I think a key here is Butler being assertive on offense early and consistently. He needs to make LeBron expend himself on the defensive end, or I'm not sure it will matter how Miami defends him. (Alternatively--again, stealing from Lowe--Dragic could be so good on the PNR that LeBron has to take up that responsibility, since he could also plausibly switch onto Bam. I think Miami would be happy to have him burning that candle.) Anyway, this is where I say I don't have a good prediction--because I don't--and declare that it's a make-or-miss league, so who knows?
  14. I was fairly concerned KC wouldn't be able to stop Baltimore consistently, but I'm not surprised Mahomes played so well. 1) Blitzing him is a terrible idea, but Baltimore can't get pressure otherwise, and they lead the league in blitz rate; 2) Baltimore's secondary isn't good enough to cover when singled up in man; 3) KC had run the most vanilla offense possible the first two weeks, so I assumed there would be a lot of schemed open receivers; 4) Mahomes never admits to it in interviews, but he cares about being considered the best QB in the league. I mean, there were "and I took that personally" memes when the NFL Top 100 was released. Still, I'm surprised Baltimore got away from the run as early as they did. One first-and-20 on their second possession, and the first drive's success seemed to be forgotten.
  15. I’m not sure if Okada is really trying to get it over, or if this—like his balloons before—is another prop to show he’s not the Rainmaker anymore. “Okada doesn’t know who he is without the title” is an interesting premise, but “working boring matches on purpose” is not the most compelling way to tell it.
  16. 1) Sample size. There is no reason to expect playoff basketball will match regular season trends, even if all the variables were somehow equated—which they can’t be. 2) Eye tests are biased, or at least prone to human error. There is, in any case, no reason to prefer an aggrieved fan’s eye test to another’s, or the refs’. Again: Not saying Houston did or didn’t get a fair shake. I’m saying that one stat can’t demonstrate it.
  17. The biggest fallacy commonly held by basketball fans is that equal free throw attempts equals good refereeing, and any discrepancy can only be explained by incompetence or malice, and not that teams play different styles of offense, and some legitimately commit more fouls than others. (This isn't even a commentary on the above case specifically. In a world with perfect refs, teams would--and should--shoot a different number of free throws.)
  18. Totally agree with this. (I mean, the data says what it says. I can disagree with the implications, but not that they conclude what they do.) But I think this gets back to why this sort of errand--though fascinating--can't ever reach a meaningful end. Data will say one thing--or rather, different sets will say different things. And we will all conclude other things, based on our own biases and heuristics. E.G., that Durant is Durant, that the Warriors coasted through the regular season, and so on.
  19. ELO is based on how the team played--wins/losses, considering margin and strength of opponent--not an estimation of the skill of the collected talent. Again, it's one data point. We should note that, and adjust our opinions based on the weight of all the evidence we have--that includes noting that more talent and regular season success don't necessarily corelate. Like, most everyone would argue that the Warriors were better with Durant than without. (I'd also point out that Hornacek had a significantly higher VORP and WS/48 than Russell. Even if you want to suggest he wasn't better, there's really not a case he was significantly worse at the time.)
  20. I don't know that the New Japan audience ever really treated him that way. I think his heel turn was basically a way to make something useful out of their antipathy. Plus he's had so many injuries and worked such a violent style that his explosiveness/pace is really diminished. So, I think New Japan has him slotted about right. NOAH would probably put him a little higher up the card--but honestly I'm not convinced he'd be ahead of KENOH, Go, Nakajima, or Kiyomiya, and I'm sure KENTA is happier making (I assume) better money without the weight of his and NOAH's mutual legacy. (I doubt he'd entertain trading places with Marafuji for a second.)
  21. Not that it goes back far, but he retires as the all-time leader in DRS at LF, and is a four-time Fielding Bible winner. 34.7 bWAR for his career, with an average of 5.95 from 2011 through 2014. So... hall of not-quite very good, but still whatever the tier below that is, which isn't bad. And a great story to reach that point, being the can't-miss uber-prospect at 3B (Brett said the early comparisons flattered him) who grew up a Royals fan, then busted hard, then remade himself into a deserving all-star. His game-tying home run off of Familia in Game 1 of the 2015 World Series is an all-time baseball memory, for me.
  22. Yeah, as someone who loves terminator mode Ibushi, this was easy MOTT (so far) to me. Ibushi's best limb selling in... a while, and a great (non-Ishii) example of how "no selling" can be selling, when done right. And the Taichi push continues, and feels totally earned.
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