Archive for January, 2010

Fans Own “Who Dat”

Posted in NFL with tags , , , on January 28, 2010 by Dallas O'Malley

Roger Goodell is one greedy son-of-a-bitch.  He thinks he’s slick too.  Goodell was in New Orleans for the NFC Conference Championship game last Sunday.  There he witnessed thousands of “Who Dat” t-shirts and apparel.  Now that the Saints are Superbowl bound Goodell realizes  his chance to cash in on an old New Orleans local catchphrase.  Now Goodell’s brainchild is to copyright the term “Who Dat” and prevent anyone from using it without written consent from the NFL.  The NFL claims they own the term.  What a fucking joke.  Do they own the term “cheesehead” or “black hole” too?  It’s crazy ridiculous that the NFL is trying to stop t-shirts or other items that you have created in New Orleans that reads “Who Dat”. It isn’t owned by the NFL. It is owned by the fans. Created by the fans, owned by the fans. It’s a creole term and I didn’t realize they had any creoles on the NFL marketing board.  When the phrase first became popular, it was New Orleans native Aaron Neville who performed the song for a music video; not Pete Rozelle who was the NFL Commissioner at the time.  The NFL never gave two shits about “Who Dat” until they realized the potential for Superbowl memorabilia bearing the unique term.  The NFL is already a rich enough company and Goodell is trying to take “Who Dat” away from the fans that supported it long before he even heard of it.  Goodell can’t take away something he had nothing to do with in the first place.  The NFL will make their money regardless so they don’t need “Who Dat”.  Goodell should make things right and leave the issue alone.  If not then I’ll sell shirts that read “Who Dat” and take the proceeds to pay someone to pimp slap Goodell for even trying pull this shit.

Defending the Who Dat Nation,

Dallas O’Malley – The Rebel Ref


Favre Is More Than Numbers

Posted in NFL with tags , , , , on January 27, 2010 by Dallas O'Malley

It’s been a few days but nothing new is being said about Favre’s 2009 finale.  All that is being said is he threw away his team’s chances with another late game interception.  The media is quick to point out 2 INTs as useless stats to fill in the blanks regarding their favorite story – Brett Favre being the reason the Vikings lost.  Favre’s 2 interceptions are not the stats that really mattered.  It was the 3 fumbles by his teammates that denied the team the opportunity to face Peyton Manning in South Beach.  Yes, the interception was not Favre’s brightest moment from Sunday’s modern day thriller, and his last 2 conference championship late game interceptions will not be his lasting legacy as some are proclaiming it will be.  Keeping the Rebel Ref tradition alive of recalling the action and not just the result, the Vikings’ loss was not Favre’s fault.  The game should not have come down to that final Vikings drive.  The Saints should have been put away long before that.

The Vikings could have punched their ticket to Miami, but the Saints defense was completely focused on tomahawking the ball out of their grasp.  A scouting report made the Saints’ priority to force fumbles even if it meant missing tackles.  It worked and of the 5 Vikings turnovers but the 3 fumbles is what hurt them the most.  None of which were Favre’s fault. He was indeed credited with a fumble to Adrian Peterson in the red zone but it was Peterson who muffled that exchange. Of the 3 lost fumbles the most damaging one of them all was Percy Harvin’s fumble deep within their own territory.  That particular turnover allowed the stalled Saints offense to score the go ahead touchdown after several 3 and out series.

Two important numbers the media conveniently leave out are 0 and 56.  0 & 56 being that even if Favre would have thrown the ball away on that last possession, the sad reality Ryan Longwell had about a zero chance to hitting a 56 yard field goal at this stage of his career even giving or taking a few yards.  It just makes interesting conversation with the “what if” scenarios but even if Favre would have run he wouldn’t have gotten very far.  He’s good at slipping defenders and making adjustments to make throws in the pocket, but running for yardage after getting abused for 60 minutes…at age 40…how far do you think he would have gotten before he was swarmed by a pack of black & gold defenders?  Seriously, maybe 2 or 4 yards.  So instead of a 56 yard field goal, Longwell might have had a few yards less but no guarantee by far.  Also consider the horrendous kicking we’ve seen lately even from the game’s greats like Nate Kaeding and Neil Rackers.   The possibility was there but it was no lock no matter how much the media implies it.

The media is ignorant too.  Let’s forget the numbers for a minute because the sad notion that this game further illustrated Favre’s legacy as a QB who cripples his team with late game interceptions is injudicious.  Watching this game you were reminded of Favre’s legacy.  He is one tough S.O.B who absorbed a beating that no other quarterback in the league could have endured.  He got the crap kicked out of him all night long.  Peyton Manning never gets touched and his pansy ass would have been out the 1st time after being crunched in a Saints sandwich.  They don’t make ’em like #4 anymore.  He kept coming back and deflating the Saints with big time clutch throws.  He played the game with passion, power and precision just like he has done every Sunday for 19 seasons.  Even at an age where lots of retired pro’s are broadcasting, he continued to dazzle us with a paralyzing array of skill.  That is the lasting image I got from watching him against the Saints.

Favre didn’t lose the game for the Vikings as the media’s love affair with numbers suggests.  He played well and the people look into the numbers too much.  Numbers are for baseball guys.

The Saints and Destiny As I See it

Posted in NFL with tags , , , , on January 21, 2010 by Dallas O'Malley

Jets what?  Peyton Who?  The Jets are without a doubt the dullest team left in the playoffs.  The Colts aren’t exactly exhilarating either.  It was hard to stay awake for the 1st encounter between the Jets & Colts this season.  The rematch will undoubtedly be a dreary repeat.  Forget the AFC Championship. The only contest that truly matters this week is the Vikings-Saints game.  The dream match up between Brett Favre and Drew Brees will be the best shoot out since “The Good, the Bad & the Ugly”.  You’re not a football fan if you’re not super-jacked about this one. There is a lot being said about this game.  With everyone taking their shots, I will take mine.

This was my wish all along for these two teams to play each other in the conference championship.  I’m as big a Favre fan as anyone not related to him, but this is the one time where I will not be pulling for The Messiah.  My faith in the Saints has been restored and going into the biggest game in franchise history I just have to believe this team is one of destiny.  With the championship and history well within their grasp, here are my reasons for looking forward to these 3 Saints possibly and hopefully fulfilling their destinies:

Reggie Bush Shreds The “Bust” Label

Reggie Bush brought the wood in a emotionally charged game against the Cardinals.

The nation is now realizing that Reggie Bush is in fact an impact player. Bush is not the guy to carry the rock 20-25 times for 100 yards but he is a game changer of another sort.  Thanks to Bush’s newly discovered physical style of running and Sean Payton’s brilliant play calling, Bush can break the game wide open at any time.  His 84 yards rushing, 24 yards receiving and 2 TD performance (1 rushing & 1 punt return) against the Cardinals in the Division Round changed the way people reflect on his legacy.  He’s not the bust as some were predicting.  He is simply a different and special kind of running back.  It’s a special thing when a player can extinguish the flames cast on his name and I’m happy Bush is doing it in the playoffs.

Jeremy Shockey 2.0

Once viewed as team cancer, Jeremy Shockey is one of the most beloved and respected members of the New Orleans Saints.

I’ve been a huge Jeremy Shockey fan since he 1st exploded into the league in 2002.  I love his amped up attitude and his nasty style of play.  He’s a  tough bastard and when he’s on the field the Saints are a different team.  They feed of his energy and he makes the tough catches that you need from a tight end to cripple a tough defense like the Vikings’.  Despite being a intricate part of the 2007 Superbowl Champion Giants for many years leading up to their improbable run, they left him for dead and treated him like a disease.  Somehow the Giants gave him T.O status.  Shockey was thrown out like nobody’s business but he found a new home in New Orleans.  There was surrounded by other outcasts, has-beens and never will-be players.  His renegade demeanor was embraced and he was reunited with Sean Payton.  Payton was the offensive coordinator for Shockey’s best days in New York.  Shockey found his game again and is a cornerstone of the NFL’s most explosive offense.  The newest and baddest version of Jeremy Shockey needs a big ring and a new Superbowl tattoo to be complete.

Drew Is Due

Drew Brees is locked and loaded as he hunts down his 1st Lombardi Trophy.

The bible said that the Lord would return someday to save us all once again.  For the people of New Orleans, Drew Brees is the savior they were looking for.  At the center of the city’s rebirth is Drew Brees who has done some rebuilding of his own.  Since arriving in the hurricane ravaged Crescent City, Drew Brees has emerged as one the league’s elite quarterbacks.  Throughout his career, he was numb to the setbacks and doubts surrounding him and went from being pretty good with the Chargers to absolutely brilliant as a Saint.  He has become such a force in the league that his good days in San Diego are almost distant memory.  Since arriving in 2006, he’s collectively outperformed both Peyton Manning and Tom Brady.  That’s a long way for a guy thought of as too short and not possessing enough arm strength to be a quality QB in the NFL.  He’s a class act and an outstanding citizen.  He’s resurrected his career and the Big Easy from the ashes.  There are million reasons to like Brees and none to dislike him unless you’re facing him.  I feel for him like I did when John Elway was still chasing his 1st Superbowl victory.  It would be a crime if Drew Brees, after all he’s done, join the likes of Dan Marino.  If anyone wearing the black & gold deserves a ring, it’s Drew Brees.  Simply put, Favre and Manning had their turn. Let this be Drew’s year to realize his dream.

The Time is Now for Mike Tyson

Posted in Boxing with tags , , , on January 12, 2010 by Dallas O'Malley

Enough already.  Why is one of boxing’s biggest stars of all-time, “Iron” Mike Tyson, still visibly absent in boxing on all fronts? He stays secluded these days, but Tyson would certainly accept an invitation to return “home”.  He sure could use the gig, and he’s getting by with cameo appearances in movies like “The Hangover”, guest host on “Monday Night Raw” and as apresenter on award shows.  It just doesn’t compare to being where he truly belongs.  It’s not justice though for a man who we adored when he was beheading people in the latter part of the 20th century.  He is a man who left such an impression, not only the hardcore boxing fans but casual ones as well, that we still hopelessly search for the arrival of the next “Kid Dynamite”.  Amazingly enough, after all these years the networks still believe Tyson to be a delicate subject with too much risk on a potential investment.  Tyson is no longer a troubled man.  He’s made peace in his advanced age and Tyson has given us so much over the years that quite frankly, we should give back to Mike Tyson.

When considering a Tyson comeback the 1st person who comes to mind is Dana White. It’s not everyday I agree with Dana White but he got it right when he criticized Showtime in regards to boxing.  It’s always been thought and understood but no one ever actually came out and said it.  Showtime has always been second banana in boxing.  They have always had a 2nd rate roster and a deplorable commentators.  Knowing this, Showtime made some changes to better compete with boxing’s broadcasting champ HBO.  First came  adjustments to the people calling the fight.  Then came the Super 6 Super Middleweight Round Robin tournament.  It was all a step in the right direction but HBO’s boxing outlet still easily outclasses Showtime. Showtime needs something else that will undoubtedly launch their profile to new heights and make their share of the boxing market pop to the masses.  As 2009 came to a close, boxing’s resurgence was reaching its apex and for the sake of striking while the iron is hot, it’s time to bring back Mike Tyson and Showtime is just the company to do it.

There is nothing more Showtime can possibly do other than add Mike Tyson to their brand. Showtime needs Mike Tyson.  He’s a big steak to add to their sizzle.  Tyson is an unlikely historian of the sport.  He has loads of charisma and is quite articulate.  It’s a no-brainer that Showtime should add him as the retired pro on their panel. Showtime is never going to have the talent pool to compare to HBO.  The only way they can make up for it would be through an x-factor in their broadcasting team which as it stands now is very vanilla.  Imagine what a Mike Tyson can do to their line up of commentators.  Tyson equals ratings and size up the panels for both rivals and landing Tyson would only benefit Showtime.

Showtime          HBO

Gus Johnson          Jim Lampley

Al Bernstein           Larry Merchant

Steve Farhood       Max Kellerman

Jim Gray                  Harold Lederman

Karyn Bryant         Emmanuel Steward

Antonio Tarver     Lennox Lewis

It’s an insult to Jim Lampley to mention Gus Johnson in the same sentence. Unless when saying Lampley is in the upper echelon of commentator talent and Johnson can only dream of it.  Al Bernstein has the most credibility under the Showtime banner but lacks the decorated tongue of Larry Merchant.  Max Kellerman, Harold Lederman, Emmanuel Steward and Lennox Lewis are television gold and round out the sweep for HBO.  Showtime keeps trying bold new things, like forming Strikeforce to compete with the UFC, so having Mike Tyson join the team only makes sense.  It’s the one move HBO will never be able to counter while Showtime’s viewership will multiply ten fold.  People are intrigued with Tyson and he will give them a reason to tune into Showtime.

Would be backlash is no longer a factor.  Tyson has done his time.  Both in the legal system and in the eyes of the public.  In the ultimate forum of public acceptance, Oprah aired a special episode of her daily talk show featuring Mike Tyson.  Tyson reflected and broke down in front of Oprah’s legions.  He also came to terms with ear bitten victim Evander Holyfield. He’s fallen from great heights and no longer poses a threat to anyone.  He’s a humble man and has repented for his sins.  If Oprah and Evander can accept and see this, then what’s the hold up?  Tyson received Oprah’s seal of approval.  Once Oprah says you’re OK then the rest is butter.  Mike Tyson should be no exception.

Maybe the biggest obstacle in Tyson’s comeback would be himself. He would not want to be billed as “Iron” Mike Tyson.  He knows all too well how people remember him and he is not fond of it.  Tyson is quick to knockout the lofty image of “Iron” Mike much like Rob Van Winkle looks to rid the ghosts of Vanilla Ice’s past.  Luckily for Tyson, he’s not in Van Winkle’s shoes.  Imagine trying to make people forget about that.  . We love “Ice Ice Baby” bu we honestly still mock that version of Vanilla Ice.  There was no mocking “Iron” Mike.  “Iron” Mike remains timeless.  “Iron” Mike was the last champion to make boxing front page news.  Even though the man he looks back on in those days brought him years of pain, in the end we as a resilient culture only remember the true importance of “Iron” Mike.  Looking back only his boxing greatness is what matters from  that period.  The controversy that surrounded those times is a dead issue.  Tyson is still celebrated and the transition to the booth would be a smooth one.

Boxing is in Mike Tyson’s DNA.  He should be rewarded by the sport and networks that gained so much from him.  Exiling Mike Tyson from boxing would be like taking away Michael Angelo’s paint brushes.  No good can possibly come of it.  Tyson is good for the sport.  Though some would dismiss that notion I would like to point out to take note how often his name still comes up.  Whether its his documentaries, or using his name to describe a ferocious punch, Mike Tyson is still very much in boxing’s conscience.  We still have not moved on from the Tyson Era.  Countless articles covering heavyweight boxing plead for the next exciting American heavyweight to reveal himself right here and now.  Just like Tyson did when people were have Muhammad Ali withdrawals.  Even without mentioning his name, it’s understood whom they are speaking of.  Even his video game was voted the best sports game of all-time. That’s true power and something that significant should never be denied.

NFL Throwdown Week 17

Posted in NFL with tags , , , on January 5, 2010 by Dallas O'Malley
  • Living by the phrase, “it’s not how you start the season but how you end your season is what counts”, Jay Cutler flashed the awesomeness that labeled him the next big thing.  It was a small glimpse of the great things to come from next year’s Bears offense.
  • Mike Singletary’s overhaul of a once great franchise is one of the best stories of this NFL season.  Under the tutelage of “Samurai” Mike, the 49ers are no longer a game other teams look past anymore.
  • Matt Ryan led the Falcons to back-to-back winning seasons for the 1st time in franchise history.  That has to count for something.
  • Just when the Patriots begin to look like they are going to get their roll on, Wes Welker tears both his ACL & his MCL.  Without his security blanket gone, an unstable Randy Moss to throw to, Tom Brady needs either Sam Aiken or Ben Watson to step up.  Talk about being screwed.
  • Chris Johnson became just the 6th man to eclipse the 2,000 yard mark in a season.  Congratulations CJ.
  • The Cowboys, Jets & Packers all destroyed their upcoming playoff opponents this week.  Now they have the arduous task of repeating the feat for Wildcard Weekend.
  • Did the Giants just give up?  How else do you explain being outscored 85-14 in their last 2 games?
  • The two most potent rushers to finish the season were not named CJ or AP but a couple of guys named Jerome Harrison and Jamaal Charles.  Yeah, that’s what I said.
  • Both #1 seeds ended the season a combined 0-5 and we’ll see if Jim Caldwell and Sean Payton’s decision to rest their starters was the right one.  Wes Welker would concur that’s for sure.
  • The Vikings rediscovered their game at season’s end and just in the nick of time.  Another interesting note is Brett Favre, at age 40 mind you, compiled the best statistical season of his 19 year career.  Wrangler is sure to see a 42% improvement in their jeans sales.  All joking aside, Favre’s feat is truly remarkable and unequaled.

Chicago fans are now drooling with anticipation for 2010 now that they see what Cutler can really do.