Saturday, October 30, 2010

Derrick Rose has arrived

39 points, 6 boards, 7 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks.

He probably would have dropped 40 last game too if he wasn't in foul trouble in the first half.

Also, little note, Joe Noah's stat line for first 2 games:

15pt 17reb 1ast 1stl 3blk
18pt 19reb 2ast 2stl 2blk

That's outlandish!

I hope you grabbed him in your fantasy league... Dude is a BEAST.

Bulls are looking tough - loving the way Taj is pounding the boards, loving Noah (obviously) and Rose looks like he's taken the jump. Is it too early to get excited? I'm excited.


Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Comedy of Errors

Fear of death can negatively effect decision making...

Five beers and a smashed TV remote later, the Bears pissed away another winnable game, 17-14.

Not really sure where to start here, so I'll rattle off 3 relevant statistics:
  • 9TO's in the game
  • 4INT's and a fumble lost for Cutler, 2 TO's in the red zone.
  • 2 defensive TD's
Clearly not an elegant display of football artistry this afternoon. It was kind of the worst game I've ever seen but also a ridiculously entertaining and close game until the end.

At first, the game had the same stink of our last 3 losses: no line protection, no running game and a lot of sloppy play calling. Cutler running for his life, the receivers pulling up on routes and the defense spending too much time on the field.

Then we started to pull it together at the end of the first half. The running game is starting to pick up steam (opened up by the passing game) and Cutler finally converts a 3rd down to Hester and caps off the last drive with a big TD pass. Up 14-10 headed into halftime, I'm feeling pretty good.


Since I don't want to rant for 10 more hours, let's just say that Cutler looked like bad Rex and I was ready to strangle Lovie Smith to death with his own challenge flag.

HOW DO YOU NOT CHALLENGE THAT TOUCHDOWN (or, "fumble" according to the refs) ON THE 1 YARD LINE??? ARE YOU INSANE??!?

I mean, how do you challenge the clear non-TD by Bennett and then NOT challenge the clear yes-TD by Cutler? Who is manning the booth upstairs? I WANT NAMES. Absolutely inexcusable.

Troy Aikman was calling the game and kept trying to find excuses for Cutler (Knox stopped short on an INT, Hester didn't come back to the ball on another) but there is no excuse for throwing the last INT. Knox wasn't open. There was no seam. It wasn't 4th and long. Just a bad decision and it ended the game. I'd love to see the numbers on how many games we've ended with a Cutler INT.

I'm also tired of hearing how bad our talent is on the O-line. I mean, we have Olin Kreutz who goes to the Pro Bowl every year and Chris Williams is a first round pick. We've also got Omiyale who would start on most teams. Sure, our RG and RT positions aren't great but that's no excuse for our line to look like the JV Dillon Panthers. I blame Mike Tice and his stupid face. I can't stand looking at him. He's so smug all the time. Shut up Mike Tice, you suck, you were a bad head coach and you haven't gotten anything out of our unit all season. You've almost killed our franchise QB in the past 6 games. Time to get fired.

I'm generally a staunch Lovie supporter but I swear to god I was ready to tear his fucking head off today. No fire, no gameplan, lazy schemes... thankfully our defense is good and talented (I'm starting to love DJ Moore) and kept us in the game anyway. Martz seems like the only guy who gives a shit on offense, most likely because he wants to redeem his legacy as an offensive genius. I like Martz and I think he's doing a good job. We're just not executing.

Which brings me to Cutler.

Ah, Jay Cutler.

So polarizing...

I'll give it one more game before I pass judgement. My judgement will be fair, swift and merciless.

I am a kind god.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Climbing The Shit Ladder

There...I can almost see 1-6...

It's not easy having the worst record in Fantasy Football. I know, because I'm there right now.

Now, I know what you're all thinking: "But wait! You're the best FF player ever! You make the playoffs every year! Is this real life!?"

Sadly dear friends, this is indeed real life. All hope has not been lost, though. Let's look at how I started the year, and where I'm at now:

QB: Favre (C+)
RB1: Ronnie Brown (B-)
RB2: Ryan Grant Tim Hightower (D+)
WR1: Randy Moss (B+)
WR2: Malcolm Floyd (A-)
WR3: Miles Austin (A)
TE: Jermaine Gresham (C+)

QB: Drew Brees (A+)
RB1: Joseph Addai (B+)
RB2: DeAngelo Williams (B+)
WR1: Johnny Knox (B)
WR2: Hines Ward (B)
WR3: Jabbar Gaffney (B-)
TE: Dallas Clark Chris Cooley (A)

That is a vast improvement!

How did I do it? For starters, I begged and groveled and dry humped just about every manager in the league. Then I cajoled. Then I made a bad trade (Favre and Austin for Vick and Gaffney...the week right before Vick got hurt). Down, but not out, am I right?

Actually, I'm not going to break down what happened exactly (it's messy), but here are some things to keep in mind:

#1. One man's trash is another man's treasure. Team A might have dropped his 5th runningback to pick up a different player to cover a bye week, but he might be a good RB! Hell, he might even be useful to you! Good examples of "could be useful" players: CJ Spiller, Cadillac Williams, Mike Tolbert, Danny Amendola, Louis Murphy, John Carlson, Mike Williams.

#2. Never be afraid to deal for players solely to trade them. Just because another manager hasn't able to effectively shop a player doesn't mean you can't. Trade for that player who has been on the block for a whole month, and find a new way to make him attractive to a buyer. Some people put air fresheners in used cars, sometimes value is value.

#3. Anticipate. I was trying to deal Dallas Clark for three days before this "he is out for multiple weeks" news came. Read the signs - no injury report, missed time, and they signed another TE. When all of this comes during a bye week, you're in trouble.

#4. Don't send kids pictures of your dick. I suppose this is a life lesson more than anything else.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


The only nightmare you could have in this bed, is that it's yours...

Do you sleep?

Of course you do.

When was the last time you went shopping for new bed sets?

I bet it's been a while.

That's why we at the Dong would like to offer you a chance to win a fat gift certificate to CSN Stores (the fine company that supplies the aforementioned bedding products). Then you can go online and buy yourself that tonka truck bunkbed you've been eying since you got married...

All you have to do, is send us an email outlining which Chicago players wife or girlfriend you would like to take a nap with and why.

Some inspiration from Kristin Cavallari, Jay Cutler's current fling:

You may remember her from Laguna Beach or The Hills. If you do, then shame on you, that's some terrible television.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Rant: Fantasy Football

Time for a rant about fantasy football.

I've been playing fantasy football since 1995. This was the infancy of fantasy sports by most standards and just about everybody (including serious sports fans) had no idea what the fuck fantasy sports meant, and if forced to guess, probably thought it involved Magic cards, slap bracelets or Pogs.

Back in these dark ages, you had to calculate your weekly score by hand from the box scores printed in the newspaper on Monday morning. The waiver wire was determined by whoever called the commissioner first. The only way you could watch your guys play was if you owned someone on a local team and they happened to be on TV or you could catch 5 seconds of highlights on SportsCenter (if you happened to be home when it was on). Most of the time, you drafted and traded based solely on statistics and tiny nuggets of occasionally useful information. Or in some cases, horrible information ("holy shit, Mike Cloud ran a 4.5 at the combine and is going to start behind the awesome KC line next season!").

Times have changed. Dramatically. Nowadays, there are more fantasy football commercials than truck commercials on ESPN. Every male 8-65 has multiple teams in multiple sports. Even my mom knows that Ronnie Brown is an obvious injury risk and that Peyton Manning won't miss a game. There's fantasy golf.

Technology is better (DVR, RedZone, Slingbox) and global access to ridiculously detailed and immediate information is at your fingertips 24/7 (ESPN Insider, Rotoworld, Twitter, local news websites, a billion blogs, etc).

The technology and access have completely leveled the playing field.

Anyone can be a fantasy guru now - just spend enough time reading Matthew Barry or Erik Karabell or Brandon Funston or any of the other ten million PROFESSIONAL fantasy analysts. There are no original ideas anymore. There are no savvy pickups. There are no sleepers. You're told the answers before you even have a chance to think of them yourself and in case you miss some information, Yahoo or any other site will help you automatically draft a team or evaluate trades based on researched point predictions and detailed analysis.

There are 3 major losses due to this evolution of the game:

1) We've lost (or at least significantly reduced the impact of) the token moron.

This was one of my favorite parts about playing fantasy sports. The token moron is the guy who doesn't look at matchups, only recognizes big name players and doesn't follow injury news. He's the guy who drafts Jerry Rice in the first round, four years too late. He's the guy that forgets to draft a TE. He's the guy who never has a strategy and ends up in last place every year. It's almost impossible to be that uninformed today.

2) There is no edge.

It is utterly impossible to have an information edge over anyone else. You can do more homework, scout through (youtube) film, read all the reporting and player news but at the end of the day, some expert will summarize your work into a bullet point telling the world to pick up Tony Moeaki before you've had a chance to do it on your own. I pride myself at being able to spot talent and understand opportunities. These skills are severely neutered by infinite over-analysis. You end up overextending yourself on extreme picks or moves just to try and prove your skills.

Some guy in my league took Finley and Spiller in the 2nd and 3rd round of a 14 team league. Sure, it was a dumb move but why is it fun to draft exactly according to the expert rankings and how else can you possibly prove that you know more than the next guy?

3) No love for your players.

This may be a personal thing but when I picked a guy back in the day, it was much more personal. You got to know a guy through his numbers. You understood what type of player and what type of offense he played in. You made assumptions about draft picks on your own and created strategies. Guessing right on Edgerrin James was much more validating than picking someone like Ryan Mathews is today, when everyone is telling you to do it. It's much harder to separate your own skill from someone else's suggestions. In that way, I don't fall in love with my picks as much as I used to.

Sure I loved having Chris Johnson at #10 last season when he was predicted at #16 (much like Jahvid Best owners feel now) but it's not the same... 10 years ago he might not have even been in the top 20 ranked RB's, since the magazines (which were all pretty much exactly the same) were always printed right after the previous season and rookies were mostly ignored. It's hard to take 100% credit for your own picks, sleepers and strategy. Just like it's hard to respect the guy who auto-drafted and is in first place.

Sure, I sound old and cranky as shit but I miss playing a small niche game that nobody else understood, with a group of diehard football fans and close friends where it was more fun to be right and when being right earned you more respect.



Sunday, October 10, 2010


Luol Deng on Luol's Dong

It seemed like it was never going to happen, but today was the day, ladies and gentlemen. Luol Deng has signed Luol's Dong. As I expect to be struck down by a lawsuit within the next 72 hours (hey WTTW, we're also defacing Bozo the Clown's likeness on our t-shirts as well - two for one on lawsuits!), it's best to get all of this amazingness out in the open right now.

The day started innocently enough - due to some amazing timing and the incredible help of reader/slave Joseph, we were granted access to the Bulls' autograph session and open practice. The beginning of the day started with Benny the Bull and his best Whitesnake impression (although I didn't catch it on film, he did definitely spread eagle on that van).

Once we got inside, it was a mad dash for Luol Deng. I mean, this guy is CLEARLY the most popular player on a Bulls team that just got Carlos Boozer and already has big names like Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose - it's no wonder that there would be a huge line for Deng (note - it took us approximately 30 seconds from entry to get to Deng's table, and another 2 minutes to get to the front of the line. Sad).

This, ladies and gentlemen, is history:
But wait! How do we know Luol Deng can actually read?! I mean, sure, he went to Duke, but as long as you're either a basketball player or a rapist, you can make it there (note to Duke: want to make it three lawsuits? The more the merrier!). Obviously, this was going to require a little more work.

Next was John Lucas III and Kyle Weaver:

There was only one other signature on that shirt - of COURSE we got Luol to sign it! What, you think that we just wanted to get more autographs and made a dash to the shortest line (note: sorry guys, but you just don't have as much draw as looking at Boozer's fucked up hand - longest line on the 300 level).

But wait, what about the new guys? People that may not be familiar with the Dong need to be initiated proper, and so we go to Brian Scalabrine and Roger Powell:

As Scalabrine says, "That's Terrible." I mean, it's perfectly fine to do an autograph session for courtside tickets and deal with "autograph saturation", but COME ON. I love how he says he's not going to sign it, and then after a headshake, signs it anyways. Love it.

Powell's Signature - GOD BLESS!

By the time we finished with Scalabrine, there would be no more time for we did the next best thing and talked to some ushers. There's so much love here...

Yeah, that whole reading thing is hard. Obviously. Here are a few other reactions from the finest folks at the UC:

"Do you guys have business cards?" (Yes, he really asked this)

Proud fans

Clamor and commotion over the Dong

Luol's Dong? I dunno who it is.

So what's the moral here? If you're a new Dong reader, the point is this: we have accomplished what we set out to do. If lawsuits come to destroy us before we can send out T-Shirts to Scalabrine and friends, then so be it. We came, we saw, we were retarded. Vini vidi vitard.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Bears Pregame: Week 5

Career stats: 22TD, 19 INT, 4479 Yards, QB rating: 76.0

Todd Collins reminds me of mix between Cap Rooney from Any Given Sunday and a used car salesman. He's not bad - former 2nd round pick by the Bills and holds a bunch of college records at Michigan - but he's been a career NFL backup and despite a good run for the Skins in '06, has never really impressed on the field. He's been playing marginally for 15 years and at 38, you know he's not going to surprise you with anything.

Carolina has their own problems. 0-4 with losses to the Bucs and Bengals (although they hung tight with the Saints last week), and only scoring 4 TD's in the last 3 weeks. Jimmy Clausen has some promise but right now, he sucks. He's also going to battle with the worst receiving corps in the NFL (without Steve Smith and his gimpy ankle).

I guess Lovie is thinking that we can win with defense. Peppers should be fired up against his old team and Briggs and Urlacher have been elite through 4 weeks. All they can really expect to do is run with DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart (not a bad strategy) but our run defense was ranked #1 in the NFL until last week (now #6) and we can stack the box all day.

If Collins struggles, I think we'll see Caleb Hanie. Unlike Collins, Hanie was an undrafted FA and didn't play at a major collegiate program (CO State). He looked sharp last week (comparatively) and we've been grooming him for a while... would love to see what he can do out there. Hopefully, we're up by 20+ in the 4th and we can test him out with minimal pressure.

End result: Bears 24, Carolina 7.

Some other random predictions:

David Garrard has a big week.
Zach Miller has another big week.
SF kills Philly
Brett Favre has a small penis. Oh wait. That's not a prediction...


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

3-1 Bitches!

Reason #2315 not to wake a sleepwalker

Look on the bright side - this is as many wins as I thought we'd get on the season. I mean, this isn't a team that screams "potential" and "consistency." This is a team that just screams. Usually in pain.

Seriously, is anyone surprised that Cutler's brains got scrambled? Our offensive line is just a bunch of turnstiles wearing jerseys. When you have a guy who hangs onto the ball like that one fat slow kid who always lost at "Hot Potato", something bad is gonna happen. In this case, Cutler fall down go boom.

Yes, he's concussed. Yes, he's going to throw picks. But he'll be back. Maybe not as willing to dive headfirst for that first down (which is, by the way, totally awesome), but he's still lightyears better than Todd Collins. And I'm pretty sure Collins died on Monday night...maybe not Trent Green style, but he's not going to be speaking coherently for a while yet.

I think Jay Cutler's impostor Twitter feed says it best:

: Barndon Jercarbs FARMBLES!

Yeah, that sounds fun.

On the flip side, Caleb Hanie, am I right? CALEB FUCKING HANIE. This guy was like "should I get off the field?" after filling in for the since-deceased Collins and completing a 20-yarder to Knox! WTF is wrong with you!? YOU'RE A GOD AMONG MEN. If we had, like, three more snaps to judge against, I could create a small obsession about you (see: Brian Anderson, Aaron Gray, et al).

Here's to next week.