Sunday, June 22, 2008

I hate fantasy baseball this time of year

I love it all other times of the year, but hate it during the summer. This is a problem because the majority of baseball season is during the summer. Because it's the summer, and because I'm lazy, I usually end up getting out of bed sometime after noon; sometimes quite a bit after noon. Consequently, most days roughly a third of baseball games are played at noon, 12: 30, 1:00 or whatever. Its worse with games on the west coast, where games are before noon. So, I end up sleeping through roughly a third of my team's games, which leaves me a disproportionate number of games to gain points. To make things worse, its a daily league, so this happens pretty much every day. Oh well, maybe I won't make any roster changes and still win, like I did in hockey.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Stay by the phone

I have two friends, like I have already mentioned, going in this first round of the NHL draft. They are Jake Gardener and Aaron Ness. They're both my boys, and though I don't know them really well, I'm excited for both of them and eager to see them succeed. Now, Ness is headed to the U of Minnesota, and Gardener to Wisconsin. Gardener is NHL ready in my opinion, but if eather of them need any seasoning, the WCHA (which is the best College Hockey conference in the nation) is the place to do it.

Played golf for the first time this year

So, I swung the clubs for the first time this year today. I had to use my dad's clubs, because my own clubs are too small for me and I'm too poor to buy new ones. I more or less picked up where I left off last year. I didn't keep score, I didn't count strokes- I wanted to give myself a nice, laid back opportunity to have some nice swings, and some not so nice ones. There was more of the latter. I was driving the ball consistently, like last year, I was in the 150- 200 yard range, which is pretty good for me. I wasn't adding much distance, but I hit a good 7 out of 9 fairways. My irons were another story though. Like last year, I didn't hit for too much power, and when I did, my accuracy wasn't good at all. My chipping from say 50 yards on in, though, was money. Putting was ugly as always. I two putted, or more every hole. Yuck.

Monday, June 9, 2008

So, this is what it's like

So, my graduation was last Thursday night, and then the all- night party at the High School after that. The whole graduation ceremony was kind of boring, honestly. I didn't feel relieved, or happy, or sad; I was just like "so this is it, huh?" The day of graduation was really crappy. It was raining and there was a tornado warning, but we still pressed on. All of my pictures are taken at my house or in the parking garage under Northrop where we got organized. My parents dropped me off a couple blocks from the auditorium because the rain had let up a bit, only to start up even harder when I got out of the car. Oh, what fun. The ceremony itself wasn't too bad. It was like two hours, but sitting in a robe for two hours seemed like nine.

Real fast, I'll go over the all- night party. The theme of the party this year was "school of rock" which isn't a a real theme in my humble opinion. We got back to the High School at 10:00 or 11:00 at night, and they had a Casino set up in the HS cafeteria which I played until 1:00 or 1:30 in the morning. The way it worked was you got $50,000 worth in chips (hypothetical money, of course) and another fifty thousand at midnight. They had blackjack, poker and all that stuff; I ended up with like $600,000 plus at the end of the night. Anyways, you cashed your chips in at the end of the night and got tickets that you put in drawings to win stuff. Then they did an American Idol type deal which was pretty funny. Some of them were, others were just sad because some of the people took this thing really seriously. To cap the night off, they had Comedy Sportz in the auditorium which is usually pretty funny, but at 3:00 in the morning? Not so much.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Minnesota High Schoolers in the 2008 NHL draft (Rounds 1- 3)

The NHL Central Scouting Bureau's final rankings came out a while ago, and it's time I provided my commentary on the Minnesota High School players in the draft since I've seen all of them play quite a few times. I'll put the CSB final rankings in parenthesis, as well as my comments on the player. 

Jake Gardener, Minnetonka HS, D (23)
He's as close to the total package as you can get outside of the first five picks. If he's a great offensive defenseman now, he could be a star with some seasoning in the WCHA.

Aaron Ness, Roseau HS, D (27)
He'll be drafted as a defenseman, but I guarantee he won't stay that way. He's got great offensive skill, he's like a 4th forward out there, but I worry about the physical side of his game. I saw him play in the MN HS state tournament this year and he looked like his was missing that X factor, that ability to carry his team.

Corey Fienhage, Eastview HS, D (36)
He's your prototypical defensive defenseman. He's a catalyst on the blueline, and a solid hitter. You virtually can't catch this kid out of position.

Justin Jokinen, Cloquet HS, RW (54)
This kid has speed to burn. I only saw him once this season, but this kid is some offensive talent. He's got good puckhandling skills and has that intangible ability to finish

Derek Stepan, St. Mary's HS, C (58)
The Kid's got talent, but I'll be honest, its wait and see with this kid. He's got flash and the ability to finish, some physical skill. But that isn't saying much playing average at best teams up north.

David Carle, St Mary's HS, D (60)
I've heard a lot of talk about this kid, great physical ability and makes plays like nobody's business. I've yet to see though; same old story like Stepan, you never know with this kids coming out of smaller schools.

David Toews, St. Mary's HS (79)
St. Mary's really had a good team this year, eh? David has great offensive instinct like his brother Johnathan, he has hockey sense that you can't teach. He tends to back down from the physical battles though. 

Well folks, that's all the Minnesota High School players projected to go in rounds 1-3. I'll do rounds 4- 7 a bit later.

Monday, June 2, 2008

The Wild, Jake Gardener, and you

According to, The Wild, with the 24th pick, will select Jake Gardener out of Minnetonka High School. Now, I live right by Minnetonka and have seen a bunch of his games. The kid's filthy. He's a great skater who can move the puck real well and has the moves to make any player look silly. To top it off, he's got a cannon for a wrist shot, but I worry about his hitting ability. He isn't as offensive a defenseman as, say, an Aaron Ness from Roseau, but I think he needs to work on the defensive piece of his game.
Face it, the Wild really need a solid blueliner at this point in the game. Carney an Johnsson won't last forever, and who knows how Schultz will respond coming back from that broken leg. Maybe the Wild will go best available in the first round, which might mean Gardener, but I think its time for the Wild to stop playing around and fill some holes, if not at the draft in the free agent market.