2021 NHL Predictions

The strange sports year continues. The NHL is back, and this time with new divisions and a new playoff setup. Four divisions with the top 4 of each division moving into the playoffs. Then each division has their own little tournament with each winner advancing to the final 4. The 4 left will get seeded based on regular season and eventually we get a cup winner! So who will raise Lord Stanley’s Cup?

Regular Season

Eastern Division

  1. Washington
  2. Philadelphia
  3. Boston
  4. New York Rangers

North Division

  1. Toronto
  2. Calgary
  3. Vancouver
  4. Winnipeg

Central Division

  1. Tampa Bay
  2. Nashville
  3. Carolina
  4. Florida

Western Division

  1. Colorado
  2. Vegas
  3. St. Louis
  4. Minnesota

Final Four

  1. Tampa Bay
  2. Toronto
  3. Vegas
  4. Philadelphia

Stanley Cup Finals

Las Vegas over Tampa Bay

NBA 2020-2021 Predictions

It’s the time of year that everyone waits for, where I tell tell you who will win the NBA championship.

Regular Season

Eastern Conference

  1. Philadelphia
  2. Milwaukee
  3. Brooklyn
  4. Miami
  5. Boston
  6. Toronto
  7. Washington
  8. Indiana
  9. Atlanta
  10. Orlando

Western Conference

  1. Los Angeles Lakers
  2. Denver
  3. Los Angeles Clippers
  4. Dallas
  5. Utah
  6. Portland
  7. Houston
  8. Golden State
  9. Memphis
  10. Phoenix

Post Season

Eastern Conference Final – Milwaukee over Philadelphia
Western Conference Final – Lakers over Clippers
Finals Lakers over Milwaukee

The Misinformation Campaign

An increasingly popular tactic challenges conventional wisdom on the spread of electoral disinformation: the creation of partisan outlets masquerading as local news organizations. An investigation by the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia Journalism School has discovered at least 450 websites in a network of local and business news organizations, each distributing thousands of algorithmically generated articles and a smaller number of reported stories. Of the 450 sites we discovered, at least 189 were set up as local news networks across ten states within the last twelve months by an organization called Metric Media.

via Source Link

Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how people vote a certain way or just come up with the ideas they do. It’s time we all spend more time understanding that many people are just living in a faux reality, and that reality is much bigger than many can fathom.

Facebook Is Breaking Brains

It has become a familiar story: The older relative, the intensifying Fox News habit, the alarming Facebook posts, the inevitable detachment from reality. Losing a parent to the conservative cyber-swamp is such a common experience among millennials that it has produced an entire sub-genre of documentaries, books and online support groups.

via Source Link

Facebook is literally destroying nations across the world. From the Philippines to Myanmar to right in our backyard, the damage Facebook is doing is hard to quantify.

What Kamala Harris Learned About Power at Howard

Since graduating, Ms. Harris has been an active part of the Howard alumni community. Her line sisters from Alpha Kappa Alpha Inc. said she speaks with them regularly, even from the campaign trail, checking in recently with one member who was coping with a health issue. At an event in Atlanta during her presidential run, she saved a front-row seat for an A.K.A. sister she knew would be in attendance, telling no one.

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This is such great work from Astead Herndon.

Census Count Can Be Cut Short, Supreme Court Rules

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Tuesday allowed the Trump administration to shut down the census count ahead of schedule, a move that could allow the Census Bureau to submit tabulations excluding unauthorized immigrants by the end of the year.

The court’s brief, unsigned order gave no reasons, which is typical when the court acts on emergency applications. Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissented, saying that “the harms associated with an inaccurate census are avoidable and intolerable.”

Source Link

First of all, the framing of this story stinks. It is not just about excluding unauthorized immigrants. They are the most impacted groups, but this is about undercounting cities in general where the work takes longer to complete.

Second, status does not matter when it comes to the census.

Third, people better wake up and realize what is happening. The Roberts court has been very clear on issues around voting rights and now this. They will do whatever is needed to maintain a conservative majority. Those who think he will be your savior because he wrote a nuanced opinion on the ACA need to understand that Roberts entire being is about protecting corporate rights and blocking people he does not like voting. If this election ends up at the Supreme Court, he will not be your friend.

Dan Le Batard On the NBA and Black Lives Matter

It must feel unusually powerless for the powerful — silly and meaningless, even — to wear the words “How many more” or “Listen to us” on the back of your jersey while another Black man takes seven bullets to his own back. Police brutality isn’t worse than it has been; it is just televised more often. The system isn’t actually broken; it works as intended and a little too well (police forces didn’t even exist in the South until they were created to prevent slave revolt and chase down runaways). Black men are killed and incarcerated at a disproportionate rate in America, which is why Clippers coach Doc Rivers gives voice to the heartbreak when he wonders why the country Black people love can’t just love them back. What the hell is controversial about requesting equality?

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There are certain sports columnists that just get it. So many including Dan have moved over to radio and tv and rarely pick up the pen anymore. When they do however you know it is must read.

2020 NBA Playoff Picks

It’s Monday August 17th, and there are four NBA playoff games on starting at 1:30PM Eastern. One of the many things that just a few months ago did not seem possible. The NBA and NHL have both done a good job with their bubble setups, and it has provided hours of entertainment in a time when people still should be staying home when they can. While some people believe that sports being back is a reward for a society that has handled COVID (something the US has not), I have a different take. Constant sports on TV might just help keep a few more morons busy enough so they don’t mind staying inside instead of heading out without their mask to yell at others for trying to be responsible.

Now on to the playoffs. In the East I like the Raptors coming out. The Bucks were head and shoulders the best team in the NBA during the regular season, but I have them losing to Miami in the second round. The Bucks going cheap and letting Brogdon walk last summer finally catches up to them as I don’t trust Bledsoe as the go to ball handler. Toronto has the best coach in the NBA and they have created a roster of interchangeable parts that does not miss a beat no matter who is on the court. They are also fun to watch, as they play a refreshing style of basketball. Two small guys who can handle in the backcourt, an entire front court of players that can play any of the 3/4/5, and a big enough rotation that allows them to play pressure defense for 48 minutes without getting tired are the reasons Toronto once again wins the east.

Now lets go out west. The Rockets are fun, OKC is fun, Denver is fun, but something is clear. After all the smoke clears there are two teams head and shoulders above the rest. Those would be the two teams that play in LA. LeBron and Anthony Davis are the best duo in the NBA right now, but I am not confident in the roster around them. During the season the Lakers have tried to remake the roster including making moves during the long layoff, but they still have a few square pegs that need to fit in round holes. The Clippers on the other hand are deep. Kawhi and George are a great duo to start with, but like the Raptors in the east they can come at you in waves and most importantly the depth will allow them to lock down the defensive side of the floor. The difference on defense is why I like the Clippers to take down the Lakers to win the west.

A few months from now Kawhi will get his third ring on his third team. The Clippers having the best two players on the court will just be too much for the Raptors.

2020 Baseball Projections

After correctly picking the Nationals to win the World Series last year, it’s time for my all important 2020 projections.

*I had to edit this post the day after posting as baseball changed the rules around who makes the post season! Now the top two teams in each division get in while keeping the next two as Wild Cards. My picks to win it all did not change.

NL East: Phillies/Braves

NL Central: Cubs/Cardinals

NL West: Dodgers/Padres

Wild Card 1: Mets

Wild Card 2: Diamondbacks

AL East: Yankees/Rays

AL Central: Twins/White Sox

AL West: Astros/Angels

Wild Card 1: Rangers

Wild Card 2: Blue Jays

AL Champs: Rays

NL Champs: Dodgers

World Series Champions: Dodgers

Baseball is almost the only orderly thing in a very unorderly world. If you get three strikes, even the best lawyer in the world can’t get you off.

Bill Veeck

More Outdoor Biking Around NYC

Monica and I decided to do some more biking around NYC this weekend. With all activities rightly pushed outside during COVID, we are making the best of it. We started again in Midtown, went down to the Battery for some coffee, and then back up the Hudson for an outdoor breakfast on the Upper West Side. Then we went around Central Park before heading to the East Side. Next it was over the 59th Street Bridge into Queens! There we checked out a very cool place called Anable Basin Sailing Bar and Restaurant for a beer and a bite in Long Island City. Finally it was on to Brooklyn via the Pulaski Bridge where we finished the ride!