Friday Notes

Very surprising happenings in Copenhagen today. Chicago was the co-betting favorite to win the right to host the 2016 Olympics. There were four cities competing – also favored Rio, lightly regarded Madrid (Given little chance because 2012 are in nearby London), and Tokyo which was given little chance by anyone. There were to be as many as three ballots, with one city eliminated on each ballot. Despite the presence of the two most important people in the country – Obama and Oprah – Chicago was shockingly eliminated on the first ballot. You can suggest any one of a hundred different theories for why this happened, but it all just boils down to the ridiculous politics of the IOC. On the plus side, Rio might be a bit chaotic in the organizing, but it should be a heck of a party when it happens.

The NHL season is already underway – we are six games in as I write this. There have been some highlights and some lowlights. On the plus side, Alexander Ovechkin started off just as brilliantly as he always plays, and Paul Kariya channeled the 1995 version of himself against Detroit as he scored two nice goals and generally played brilliantly. On the downside, San Jose was absolutely terrible in their opener despite playing a Colorado team that they hopelessly outclassed. It’s obviously way too early to worry about them, but it certainly wasn’t what was expected. The other statistic that sticks out is from Florida – they managed to pull off a nice season opening upset of the Blackhawks, and hey did it despite giving up 55 shots. Impressive showing by goalie Thomas Vokoun, but they won’t add a lot to that win total if they keep that up.

I find this Rashard Mendenhall story unbelievable. He didn’t get a carry for the Steelers last week against Cincinnati. It turns out that that was because he was benched for not knowing the playbook. How in the world does a second year player who was a high draft pick not know the playbook? That should be impossible at the best of times, but especially given that he’s a guy who would have the opportunity to play a lot if he was prepared. So shockingly unprofessional.

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