Everything's dumber in Dallas


Everything's dumber in Dallas

By Jon Fucile

Multiple-choice question time. Pretend you are Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. You just built a billion dollar stadium and you are hosting the Super Bowl there.

Dallas winters are not as bad as New England winters, obviously, but ice storms for this time of year are not unheard of. When you were building the stadium would you:

A) Make sure the building is equipped to handle an ice storm, just in case
B) If not equipped, have a plan in place to handle an ice storm
C) Do nothing

Not sure A or B applies usually because the Cowboys like to choke, but just play along.

Weather reports came in a week before the Super Bowl predicting an ice storm. The storm hits as predicted, but you still have a few days to clean everything up and get the icicles off the sides of the building so they dont fall and hit people. Would you:

A) Pay to make sure the ice and snow is being removed properly in time for the game
B) Take measures to ensure that fans are not in danger and that everyone gets into the game smoothly.
C) Do nothing and hope no one sues if injured

In an attempt to feed your ego and set an attendance record for a Super Bowl, you have a temporary seating structure built to fit more fans into your stadium. A fire marshal does not have time to approve the structure and determine if it would pose a safety hazard to fans, and thus it is banned from being used. Would you:

A) Pay to fix that section since you can quite obviously afford to and make it safe for human habitation
B) Make arrangements for people who would sit in those seats to be seated somewhere else prior to the game
C) Ignore the problem, who cares about these peon fans

Now pretend youre the NFL. You know at least a week ahead of time that this temporary seating structure has not been approved by a fire marshal. Would you:

A) Not sell tickets for that section
B) Contact the people who bought tickets in that section and offer them seating in another section of the stadium
C) Sell the tickets anyway, let those people make travel plans and laugh all the way to the bank

If you answered C to all three questions, congratulations! You have the same go-get-em, ignore-the-fans, we-super-duper-love-money attitude as Jerry Jones and the NFL!

Yes, the same league that hates touchdown celebrations, hitting, and basic fun struck again this past week by producing one of the biggest Super Bowl fails of all time.

First seven people were injured, one critically, when melting ice and snow fell from the roof of Cowboy Stadium and struck the poor unsuspecting people.

Yes, despite knowing about the storm the NFL and the Cowboys did nothing and people were injured when people were way too incompetent to clean up. High fives guys!

Then because of the melting snow and ice and risk for further injury, several of the entrances to Cowboy Stadium were shut down, causing waits of up to an hour and forty-five minutes just to get into the game. Super Bowl fever! CATCH IT!

But thats not all! No, not even close.

The NFL, knowing the temporary seating structure the Cowboys built was not approved by a fire marshal sold the tickets anyway, seats with a face value of 800 that were surely sold for at least double and then prevented over 1200 people who held tickets to that section from entering the game.

850 fans were eventually supposedly given better or equal seats. What about the remaining 400?

Fans of both the Steelers and Packers who had spent lots of money and lots of time traveling to Texas just to see their favorite team in the Super Bowl were simply told too bad, go home, your section might kill you and we dont really care.

A league led by a commissioner who is trying to crack down on player conduct basically knowingly and willingly stole from fans. Sure, some of the fans that didnt get in were giving triple the face value of their ticket and tickets to next years Super Bowl but many of these fans paid triple face value anyway, paid travel expenses getting to Dallas and were there for the memories of watching their favorite team in the Super Bowl.

The league is making the best of a bad situation, but the bad situation was completely of its own doing. It wasn't an unforeseen circumstance that led to these folks getting kicked out of the stadium. It was a baffling oversight by whoever was in charge of getting the seats ready, said Chris Chase of Yahoo.

So lets recap . . . the NFL sold these tickets, let these people wait almost two hours in line and then said 'Hahahahahaha! thanks for the money, you cant get in.'

From an article on Yahoo.com:
Others said they had paid up to 3,000 for their seats and were not happy about the NFLs offer to give them three times the amount in a refund.What about our travel and hotel expenses? one man shouted.

Has there been a bigger bunch of idiots since the city of Philadelphia was first built?

Who knows? Maybe the NFL was just practicing for the lockout when they kept those fans out of the game. Way to keep it classy. 'The No Fun League' just took on a whole new meaning.

Celtics-Hawks preview: C' defense looks to keep up historic pace


Celtics-Hawks preview: C' defense looks to keep up historic pace

As the wins continue to pile up for the Boston Celtics, so does the praise and adulation from others throughout the league. 

It’s a double-edged sword if you think about it. 

Acknowledging how good the Celtics are, is indeed a sign of respect. 

But it also means Boston plays every game with a large target on its back unlike any of Brad Stevens’ previous Celtics teams. 

And that means every game they play, even those like tonight’s matchup at Atlanta where they will be heavily favored, are dangerous matchups.

Because for some teams, the next best thing to competing against the champ (Golden State) is facing the team with the best record who just knocked off the champ. 

That will be one of the dynamics at work tonight when the Celtics (14-2) kick off a three-game road trip against a trio of sub-.500 teams beginning with the Hawks (3-12).

Boston has shown tremendous focus and attention to detail during their 14-game winning streak. But in that span, the Celtics have never had a trio of teams right behind each other that struggled as much as the Hawks, the Miami Heat and the Dallas Mavericks have this season. 

Not including games played on Friday, Boston’s next three opponents are a combined 11-33. 

All three of those teams would love to be the one to knock off the Celtics, the kind of victory that could significantly shift the direction of their respective franchises from their current downward spin. 

Meanwhile, the Celtics will look to continue to play with the kind of defensive temperament that has catapulted them to the top of the NBA’s defensive standings in several categories. 

“The way they’re beating teams it ain’t pretty,” a league executive texted NBC Sports Boston. “But they win. Last I checked, that’s what matters most.”

And that success has to a large degree, put a bigger bullseye on the Celtics than ever. 

“Now that we have a reputation, I think everyone is coming for us,” said Boston’s Jaylen Brown. “Now we have to come play even harder, and I think we can do that. I think we are more than capable.”

Especially if they continue to defend at a level we haven’t seen in years. 

Boston has a league-best defensive rating of 95.4. A key component in Boston’s strong play defensively has been their ability to win the battle of the boards. They come into tonight’s game with a .530 rebounding percentage which is second in the league to Portland (.539).

And that defense, while praised for how it functions collectively, it also consists of some pretty good individual defenders as well. 

Among guards averaging at least 20 minutes per game, Boston has four players ranked among the top 10 in defensive rating (Marcus Smart, 93.5 defensive rating, 2nd); Jaylen Brown (93.6, 3rd); Terry Rozier (95.0, 5th) and Kyrie Irving (96.4, 8th). 

When you look at forwards, Brown headlines a trio of forwards that includes himself, Al Horford (94.2, 3rd) and Jayson Tatum (96.1, 7th). 

Aron Baynes has the best defensive rating (90.6) among centers, followed by Horford (94.2).

“Our guys are locked in and really trying and again we can really play some pretty ugly basketball at times,” Stevens said. “But I do think that we are competing which is really good.”