Category Archives: Sports

Covering the pro sports world in oh-so-many words.

A visit from the 2018-19 NHL season

Twas the night before hockey In old Tampa Bay
With Lightning comes thunder…And sometimes, even rain!
 
The fans were all curious; what on Earth is the plan?
Could success still be found, without the jolly Yzerman?
On the verge was the end of 2018 —
A loss to the Caps brought fans agony
 
But forward they go without that much change
The roster’s success has brought little to complain
 
82 games will write a story, robust
Ending, perhaps, with names etched on The Cup…

Leave a Comment

Filed under hockey, Tampa Bay Lightning

A quarterback alone cannot cure what ails the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

It’s a shell game at quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this season with Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick sharing time at QB. Not that they planned it, not that they intended it that way, and not that the Bucs have found success with either man behind center.

Oh, Tampa Bay is .500 after four games, leaving the door open for success or failure with 12 more games to be played. Hey, it’s par for the course so far. The downside being that last two games were losses. Sunday’s was a Chicago Bears blowout of Los Buccaneers, 48-10. One of the leading headlines Monday afternoon on TampaBay.com read that Jameis Winston will return to the role of starting quarterback full-time for the rest of the season and possibly longer. All by way of a loss and Fitzpatrick not solving every issue during play.

That does not, in any fashion, cure what ails the Buccaneers. Not remotely and offense-first hype from the Times (and from fans) is part of the failings. Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under football

That mascot Gritty is now a heralded PR SNAFU

One day after my little piece on that shitty thing called Gritty, I got a PR email regarding the mascot that seems to have a different take on how the public reacted toward Gritty than what really went on. Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under hockey, interweb

Philly’s Gritty monstrosity – A fitting declaration for a weak mascot

Mascots and pro sports are a way to rile up the fans in a good way, a caricature personality that associates with a sports team. Some of those mascots are fitting-yet-playful parody characters who embody the franchise, like Roary the Lion with the Detroit Lions of the NFL, Osceola (and his steed, Renegade) with the Florida State University Seminoles. Others are a more playful association, like Mr. Met for the New York Mets or ThunderBug with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

And then there’s what the Philadelphia Flyers unveiled today:

Now, I’m not a Philadelphia sports fan and never have been, I still take the Flyers franchise as a rival to the Tampa Bay Lightning (the Flyes were the Bolts first ever playoff opponent). I’ve never taken much to the 76’ers, or the Eagles, though the Phillies have earned a token appreciation simply by way of where they play spring training. All that said, nothing I’m about to say is intended to slight or put down Philly as a city or a sports town.

That said, what the ever loving hell?? Ugh! Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under baseball, football, hockey, Sports

A word to summarize the Tampa Bay Lightning before the 2018-19 NHL season

It’s a foreign word in the history of sports in Tampa Bay, really. Oh, there are numerous athletes that the Bay area has produced who met and had relations with the word. There are plenty of high school athletic organizations who have known the word but single teams don’t represent the region. Heck, this applies to college sports too. Many residents may claim loyalty and devotion to Florida State, the University of Florida or the University of Miami while the University of South Florida is here in the region and…. Well, the word is foreign in the most prominent sports followed by area sports enthusiasts.

While the word has been largely foreign in the Tampa Bay metro area, it has taken up residency here in the past and it’s seriously hanging out along the banks of the Garrison Channel at current. It blazes so bright that some of the fans are blinded by it and they cannot take satisfaction from it.

The word, ladies and gentlemen, is contention. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Tampa Bay, Tampa Bay Lightning

Right-vs-wrong; Brett Connolly will not attend Washington Capitals White House visit

Brett Connolly was Steve Yzerman’s first draft choice as general manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2010. Connolly started a tend, though, that too many of the 1st round picks by the Lightning have followed in recent years: He moved on. Connolly was traded to the Boston Bruins at the 2015 NHL trade deadline.

This story isn’t about first-round phase-outs or failings, though, this is to share news about, ahem, Stanley Cup Champion Brett Connolly and a decision worth noting in the sports world. Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under hockey, Politics, Sports

Reacting to preseason Tampa Bay Buccaneer hype

Does it reflect poorly on me that my reaction to the Tampa Bay Times asking “Is This Tampa Bay’s Most Talented Offense Ever?” is “Who gives a shit?”

Defense wins championships and this franchises only successful era was founded by a defense-first coach and highly stocked and well-coached defense. The 2018 season is looking more and more like a Hugh Culverhouse-era letdown. You can’t and shouldn’t get hyped in the preseason, especially with a team with a long tradition of mediocrity. Questions like that – gauging talent level – are more fitting after a pro-sports season after accomplishments.

Maybe I’ll eat my words. Tampa Bay Buccaneer history – immediate and long-term – suggests otherwise.

Leave a Comment

by | August 25, 2018 · 9:30 AM

Florida’s Fox Sports Net stations are up for grabs

I could kvetch here about conglomerates and how mega companies merging – even entertainment companies – is not ideal in many ways, but I just shared my opinion of that and should move on to the point of this post…

Disney has acquired 21st Century Fox. No, not all holdings but tons of them in film and production. The one aspect that Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa Bay Rays, Orlando Magic, Miami Heat and Florida Panthers fans need to be aware of and keep an eye out on is that the deal forces Disney to get rid of some of those holdings…Like Fox Sports Net’s 22 affiliate stations around the country.

This is where two plus two should have clicked and you gotten the idea that the Fox Sports Net stations in the Sunshine State are up for sale. How this will effect broadcasts now or after their acquisition is a puzzle.

It’s not just the who of acquisition that is a puzzle but what will happen that changes or shifts the networks? There’s no telling if everything remains regional alone or if broadcasts from other markets will be aired on the stations to fill air time… Then again, it might all remain status-quo with the stations re-dubbed as NBC Sports or Spectrum affiliates, or another party (Sportnet as an international sports network, perhaps, though law may prevent that).

Comcast and Spectrum are the two key players cited in this article about the situations. Comcast (the communication company that owns the National Broadcast Company and it’s co-branded affiliates such as NBC Sports and MSNBC among many others) or Charter Communications and the Spectrum network. Spctrum has become a player in Tampa Bay of recent as they’ve acquired cable holdings. They do own and operate sports stations elsewhere in the country as-is and do hsave an interest in expanding their holdings.

Broadcasting shouldn’t be affected really; if the sale of the affiliates does not happen by the end of September, the failure will be on the Fox acquisition by Disney. If and when affiliation changes happen though, it’s tough to gauge if and how things will eventually shift on both networks.

Leave a Comment

Filed under baseball, Entertainment Industry Thingies, hockey, Sports, Tampa Bay Lightning

Regionalism versus myopia: The resumption of Hatfields versus McCoy in Tampa Bay sports

More than a year ago, I wrote about the issue with St. Petersburg and the Rays. The city’s logistical location at the southern tip of Pinellas County is a rather isolated locale for the greater Tampa Bay metro region. Of course, for residents of St. Petersburg, the issue is simply because Tampa gets the unfair advantage, it’s the difficult place of the region to travel to and … and… and…

And I’m hearing too much of this Hatfields vs. McCoy’s bullshit once again. A myopic mentality has come to light once again after the Rays unveiled their new stadium proposal in the Ybor City area of Tampa.

Remarking about the proposal before getting back to the topic of this blog post: An $892 million stadium, only seating between 28,000 and 30,000 was proposed with a translucent roof structure so natural grass can be used in an indoor ballpark. A very-much excessively priced structure with an experimental asset? If you’re a resident of Tampa, St. Petersburg, elsewhere in the region, or even in Montréal for that matter, you should take issue with this. This is Jeffrey Loria-like tactics being employed by Stuart Sternberg. Oh, there is something fitting here, that a small park in Ybor City would mix with the neighborhood a-la Wrigley Field in Chicago.

This isn’t a neighborhood baseball club though. This franchise is supposed to represent the Tampa Bay Metropolitan region. That stadium plan fails unless you’re going to utilize the We must or else! strategy that St. Pete utilized in the 1980s and resulted in the construction of the domed venue now known as Tropicana Field. Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under baseball, Tampa Bay

Instead of thoughts and speculation, Erik Karlsson trade rumors bring thundering silence to the Tampa Bay Lightning blogosphere

Rumors, innuendo, speculation… It’s loomed since before the 2018 NHL trade deadline and now it’s on the forefront during the NHL offseason. Days after the start of the free agency season, Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson’s name started making headlines again. Karlsson is available on a revamping Senators franchise that is also a marred object by way of owner Eugene Melnyk. (Sinuate: Senators fans – We’re expansion brethren and I sympathize with you over ownership issues; the Tampa Bay Lightning have been there, believe me).

That little statement there dropped the bomb on which franchise this post is about: Les Bolts de Tampa Bay are tied rampantly in speculation at the end of the first week of July. In fact, yesterday (July 6) you could have come to the conclusion the deal was final and done and just had to be announced with details fully disclosed. That’s how much chatter was on Twitter and other means. A third party franchise (or many?) was supposed to be involved in order to manage contracts and move bodies to get things squared away all right and good.

You wouldn’t know this if you checked some of the Lightning blogosphere. Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under hockey, Raw Charge, Tampa Bay Lightning