The Cinderella story in this year’s Final Four (feel free to look at the adorable picture of Shaq right about now) is Michigan State, but are they? Technically, yes. The Spartans came in as a 7 seed, but finished the season playing their best ball, and their preseason ranking (18th) indicates their talent. (Highly ranked preseason teams often re-emerge during March Madness.) Case in point: Last year’s Kentucky Wildcats, the preseason #1 but an 8 seed in the Big Dance that beat 1 seed Wichita State in the round of 32 and made it all the way to the Championship Game, just like Michigan State can do this year.
[Before I continue, let us take a moment to appreciate the second-best commercial of March Madness, in which AT&T dialing up more comedy. This year’s ads, starring “March Madness Legends” Shaq, Dr. J, Clyde Drexler, Christian Laettner (but I still hate him), does not meet the high standards of the 2014 March Madness commercial genius (“Fast or Slow” with adorable kids, and then Bill Russell, Larry Bird, and Kareem).]
So: Michigan State is NOT a Cinderella story. They have coach Tom Izzo, who knows what he’s doing come March. The 2000 NCAA champ has made it to the Big Dance 18 straight seasons, reached the Sweet Sixteen an astounding 13 times with Michigan State, including seven of the last eight years, and is now in the Final Four for the seventh time. Playing the 4 seed Louisville in the Elite Eight, Michigan State was still favored by 2.5 points.
While Michigan State is the 7 seed they are in no way, shape, or form an underdog.
Kentucky. Wisconsin. Michigan State. Duke.
These are the teams that have made it to this year’s Final Four in Indianapolis’s Lucas Oil Stadium, which seems to host all major sport events nowadays. Of the remaining four, three were Number One seeds and all represent one of the “big 6” conferences, but that isn’t to say this year’s March Madness was anything but Madness. After Kentucky’s complete undressing of trash-talking West Virginia in the Sweet 16, all four Elite Eight the Elite Eight games were tight, giving Vegas gamblers continuous stress, and causing lots of money to exchange hands in the final seconds even of already-decided games. But even we non-Vegas -level gamblers had it tough this season, as millions of brackets were busted early when Iowa State and Baylor were dropped in the first round. After the Round of 64, there was only perfect entry left on ESPN.com’s massive tournament, and its creator only had 15 minutes to fill out his bracket, and hadn’t watched a single college basketball game all year. Take that, Jay Bilas!
Here’s the benspn prediction for the national championship: Kentucky over Michigan State, 54 – 46, but the real winners have been the Capital One commercials starring Charles Barkley, Spike Lee, and Samuel L. Jackson.
The Knicks have recently bought out Amar’e Stoudemire’s contract (essentially releasing him from the team) and Carmelo will not be playing for the Knickerbockers for the rest of the season
even though he played the All-Star Game like a punk, New York has finally completed the transition into having an all D-League roster. Knicks fans finally have nothing to see at Madison Square Garden except for an astounding lack of water fountains. Knicks fans also are unable to say that, even with the worst record in the league, they still have two star players on their roster.
But for now expect to see blowouts against the Knicks that are so routine you might be better off watching Mike Tyson Mysteries or Friends reruns on Netflix.
The Knicks’ season continues with more despair than hope. As of now the team is the worst in the NBA with their pitiful 10-41 record; they are even worse than the lowly 76ers, but the team from Philly has a great future, unlike the New Yorkers. What makes it even more sad is that Knicks owner James Dolan told a lifelong fan to go ahead and root for the Nets after being criticized by him in an email. Dolan even called the fan an alcoholic. This may mean that no one will be showing up for Knicks games anymore because…
- The tickets are too expensive to watch D-leaguers.
- It’s just no fun.
- The t-shirt cannon gunner has the most accurate 3-point shot on the squad.
P.S. benspn will be having more on the Knicks’ sad season with a special guest blogger!
LeBron James has just opted out of his contract with the Heat. So while we wait for another “Decision” lets look back to the last one where LeBron was right about one thing, what was it again?
not one, not two , no it was – oh yes – NOT THREE.
Derek Fisher, the new Knicks head coach, vows to end the Knicks title drought. So basically Fisher is saying he will beat Lebron, and one of the western conference powerhouse teams, with Carmelo if he stays, and a bunch of old idiots who are overpayed and like to punch fire-extinguishers for fun. This team even with Carmelo didn’t even make the playoffs, this year, even when a team under .500 got in.
Yes, it’s that time of year again. The time where the number 1, 2, and 3 seeds in the NCAA tournament play much lower ranked teams in the first round, and, just like every year people think that the high seeds who don’t win by 40 have absolutely no chance of winning it all, even if they are the best team in the country, Florida. Florida is the Number One team in the NCAA right now, yet they played a very close game against Albany, and now people everywhere are saying they cannot win the tournament.
The statistics website fivethirtyeight.com says that since Florida didn’t play well against Albany it sets them up for an early exit from the NCAA tournament. Every year this happens and there are always statisticians who forget that history repeats itself. So in one year when the experts say ‘No way,’ to a good team after a tough first-round game, don’t believe it for a second.