Saturday, January 31, 2015

Super Bowl 49 notes/oddities


By Rick Morris
 

^ The cities of Boston and Seattle have had almost no significant sports interactions previously in their history, largely because Seattle’s major pro sports history only dates back a few decades: the Sonics were started in 1967, the Pilots launched in 1969 (and moved the year after, but were replaced by the Mariners in 1977) and the Seahawks came into existence in 1966.  Most of Boston’s franchises are decades older than that, although the Patriots were created in 1960.
 

^ New England’s longevity as a top team is unmatched in the Super Bowl era by a few metrics.  Counting Super Bowl 31 in 1997 (the only one prior to the Belichick/Brady era, although Belichick was defensive coordinator that year), they’ve been in seven Super Bowls in 19 years, a record that no other team can match.  Along with San Francisco (Team of the 1980s), they’re the only Team of the Decade to make it to a Super Bowl in the next decade and now they’ve made two in the 2010s.  They’re very comparable in terms of being a lasting power to not only the 49ers but the San Antonio Spurs in today’s NBA.  However, New England is also the only Team of the Decade to lose a Super Bowl in their decade – and they’re the only team to lose a Super Bowl in the decade before they were the premier team.  Seattle will be trying to replicate this feat.  Along these lines, Seattle will be the first team to try to become a Team of the Decade by beating the previous decade’s designate in a Super Bowl.
 

^ The Patriots (‘80s-‘10s) and Giants (‘80s-‘10s) are the only teams to make it to Super Bowls in four consecutive decades.  The Broncos (‘70s-‘90s) are the only teams to make it in three consecutive decades.
 

^ New England’s loss in Super Bowl 42 also came at University of Phoenix Stadium – which is actually the last time that they played there.  They’ll be trying to win a Super Bowl at the site of a previous loss, something that the Colts managed in Super Bowl 5 in Miami after losing Super Bowl 3 and something that the Vikings failed at in New Orleans in Super Bowl 9 after losing Super Bowl 4.
 

^ This game marks the third instance of teams who are each in their third Super Bowl in the last ten years.  Pittsburgh beat Dallas in Super Bowl 13 and San Francisco beat Denver in Super Bowl 24.
 

^ One of the big media storylines has involved Pete Carroll facing his old team in the Super Bowl.  Dan Reeves, who was fired by Denver, lost to them in Super Bowl 33 with Atlanta.  Jon Gruden, who was traded by Oakland, beat them the next year with Tampa Bay in Super Bowl 36.
 

^ Twice before, a team that won a Super Bowl earlier in a decade faced a team that lost a Super Bowl earlier in a decade – meaning that one team was 1-0 that decade and the other was 0-1.  The first time, Miami went to 2-0 in the 1970s by winning Super Bowl 8 in Houston and the second time, Denver and Green Bay moved to 1-1 in the 1990s when Denver won Super Bowl 32.
 

^ In East Coast vs. West Coast Super Bowls, the West Coast is 3-1, although the East’s only win came two years ago with Baltimore over San Francisco.
 

^ This is the first Super Bowl ever that features two teams who have each followed the other one into the big game.  Seattle made Super Bowl 40 the year after New England was in Super Bowl 39 and now New England joins Seattle the year after the Seahawks played in Super Bowl 48.
 

^ Since the turn of the millennium, the AFC has had great continuity in the Super Bowl.  New England has made six appearances, with three for Pittsburgh and two apiece for Baltimore and Indianapolis.  The only other teams to make it are Oakland and, of course, Denver last year.  The NFC is another story.  Only two teams have made it to the Super Bowl more than once since 2000 and each of them has been there three times, both Seattle and the New York Giants.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Lounge on YouTube: Mini-Episode #511 – Justified Season 6 preview


By Rick Morris                                          

As we referenced previously, our pals at Sportsology are hooking us up for live segments that we’re doing with guests and remote FDH Lounge Dignitaries these days.  We’re happy to report that we’ve been able to produce many segments on our own, but we’re thrilled for the help on some of these with guests and the thanks all go to our great friend Russ Cohen.

Mini-Episode #511 previews Justified Season 6 with FDH Senior Editor Jason Jones.


       


       


       


       


 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

NBA power rankings for mid-January


By Rick Morris

 

Previous rankings are in parentheses, from start of season to present.

 

TOP TIER

1 Golden State (2-1)

2 Atlanta (10-4)

SECOND TIER

3 Portland (4-3)

4 Memphis (1-5)

THIRD TIER

5 Dallas (7-7)

6 Houston (6-9)

7 Washington (9-6)

8 LA Clippers (8-10)

9 Toronto (3-2)

10 Chicago (11-8)

FOURTH TIER

11 San Antonio (5-13)

12 Phoenix (12-12)

FIFTH TIER

13 Milwaukee (14-15)

14 Cleveland (13-11)

15 Oklahoma City (22-17)

16 New Orleans (18-14)

17 Denver (17-19)

18 Miami (16-18)

SIXTH TIER

19 Detroit (29-27)

20 Charlotte (28-25)

21 Sacramento (15-20)

22 Brooklyn (20-16)

23 Indiana (19-21)

24 Utah (23-22)

25 Boston (24-23)

26 Orlando (21-24)

27 LA Lakers (27-26)

SEVENTH TIER

28 Philadelphia (30-28)

29 Minnesota (25-29)

30 New York (26-30)

 

BIGGEST RISERS: Detroit (8 spots), Charlotte (5 spots), Houston (3 spots)

 

BIGGEST FALLERS: Toronto (7 spots), Brooklyn (6 spots), Cleveland (3 spots)

 

RANKINGS BY DIVISION – 1 POINT PER RANKING SPOT FOR EACH INDIVIDUAL TEAM, LOWEST SCORE IS BEST

 

1 SOUTHWEST 42

2 SOUTHEAST 63

3 PACIFIC 69

4 CENTRAL 83

5 NORTHWEST 88

6 ATLANTIC 114

 

RANKINGS BY CONFERENCE

1 WEST 199

2 EAST 260

NHL power rankings for mid-January


By Rick Morris

 

Previous rankings are in parentheses, from start of season to present.

 

TOP TIER

1 Anaheim (2-8-1)

2 Nashville (9-2-4)

3 New York Islanders (7-1-3)

4 Tampa Bay (5-5-6)

5 Montreal (1-4-5)

6 St. Louis (4-3-7)

7 Detroit (12-9-8)

8 Washington (22-19-12)

9 Chicago (17-11-2)

10 New York Rangers (20-17-11)

11 Winnipeg (15-16-13)

12 Pittsburgh (3-6-9)

13 San Jose (16-18-14)

14 Boston (8-12-17)

15 Vancouver (6-7-10)

16 Calgary (10-10-19)

17 Florida (23-20-16)

18 Colorado (26-22-25)

19 Los Angeles (11-13-15)

20 Dallas (24-24-20)

21 Toronto (13-15-18)

SECOND TIER

22 Ottawa (14-21-21)

23 Columbus (29-30-23)

24 Minnesota (18-14-22)

25 Philadelphia (21-28-27)

26 New Jersey (19-23-28)

THIRD TIER

27 Carolina (28-27-29)

28 Arizona (25-25-26)

FOURTH TIER

29 Edmonton (27-29-30)

30 Buffalo (30-26-24)

 

BIGGEST RISERS: Colorado (7 spots), Washington (4 spots), Boston and Calgary (3 spots)

 

BIGGEST FALLERS: Chicago (7 spots), Buffalo (6 spots), Vancouver (5 spots), Los Angeles (4 spots), Pittsburgh and Toronto (3 spots)

 

RANKINGS BY DIVISION – 1 POINT PER RANKING SPOT FOR EACH INDIVIDUAL TEAM, DIVIDED BY THE NUMBER OF TEAMS, LOWEST SCORE IS BEST

 

1 CENTRAL 12.86

2 ATLANTIC 15

3 METROPOLITAN 16.75

4 PACIFIC 17.29

 

RANKINGS BY CONFERENCE

1 WEST 30.15

2 EAST 31.75

Lounge on YouTube: Mini-Episode #510 – Championship Sunday preview


By Rick Morris                                          

As we referenced previously, our pals at Sportsology are hooking us up for live segments that we’re doing with guests and remote FDH Lounge Dignitaries these days.  We’re happy to report that we’ve been able to produce many segments on our own, but we’re thrilled for the help on some of these with guests and the thanks all go to our great friend Russ Cohen.

Mini-Episode #510 features a conversation with Texans TV host Drew Dougherty, previewing 2015 NFL Championship Sunday.


       


       


       


       


 

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Lounge on YouTube: 2015 Championship Sunday preview


By Rick Morris

Here is Mini-Episode #509 of THE FDH LOUNGE, previewing 2015 NFL Championship Sunday with FDH Lounge Dignitary and Vegas handicapping veteran Kyle Ross.


       


       


       


       


 

Lounge on YouTube: Bob Barker


By Rick Morris

To recognize The FDH Lounge 8th Anniversary, we present the five signature guest moments from Bob Barker’s five appearances on our program.  We are greatly honored that this American legend has chosen us to conduct these great conversations and there could be no more outstanding representation of the show where “nothing is off-topic” than to present them here on this occasion.


       


       


       


       


 

Lounge on YouTube: 2014-15 NFL Divisional Round preview


By Rick Morris

Here is Mini-Episode #507 of THE FDH LOUNGE, previewing the 2014-15 NFL Divisional Round with FDH Lounge Dignitary and Vegas handicapping veteran Kyle Ross.


       


       


       


       


 

Lounge on YouTube: Mini-Episode #506 – Jennifer Hale


By Rick Morris                                          

As we referenced previously, our pals at Sportsology are hooking us up for live segments that we’re doing with guests and remote FDH Lounge Dignitaries these days.  We’re happy to report that we’ve been able to produce many segments on our own, but we’re thrilled for the help on some of these with guests and the thanks all go to our great friend Russ Cohen.

Mini-Episode #506 features a conversation with Fox Sports reporter Jennifer Hale, previewing the 2014-15 NFL Divisional Playoff round.


       


       


       


       


 

Lounge on YouTube: 2014-15 NFL Wild Card Round preview


By Rick Morris

Here is Mini-Episode #505 of THE FDH LOUNGE, previewing the 2014-15 NFL Wild Card Round with FDH Lounge Dignitary and Vegas handicapping veteran Kyle Ross.


       


       


       


       

Lounge on YouTube: 2014 NFL Week 17 preview


By Rick Morris

Here is Mini-Episode #504 of THE FDH LOUNGE, previewing Week 17 of the 2014 NFL season with FDH Lounge Dignitary and Vegas handicapping veteran Kyle Ross.


       


       


       


       


 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014 NFL rankings for impressiveness of victories


By Rick Morris

 

NOTE: These rankings are based on our final NFL power rankings for the 2014 season, and our strength of schedule rankings.  The highest scores are the best ones.  Each number is composed by adding the strength of schedule rating to a stat strictly based on the number of victories attained by each team.  Playoff teams are denoted with an X.

 

1 Arizona 174-X

2 Denver 172-X

3 New England 161-X

4 Seattle 156-X

5T Buffalo 139

5T San Diego 139

7 Kansas City 137

8 Miami 136

9 Green Bay 132-X

10 San Francisco 130

11 Oakland 126

12 New York Jets 124

13 Philadelphia 123

14 Cincinnati 122-X

15 Indianapolis 120-X

16 St. Louis 116

17T Chicago 106

17T Detroit 106-X

19 New York Giants 101

20T Carolina 98-X

20T Minnesota 98

22 Dallas 97-X

23 Cleveland 96

24 Baltimore 92-X

25 Pittsburgh 92-X

26 New Orleans 90

27 Houston 84

28 Washington 82

29 Jacksonville 80

30 Atlanta 68

31 Tennessee 67

32 Tampa Bay 36