Sports have dominated my life for the better part of 27 years. Chances are, you have a similar affliction. The sports "bug," if you will. Don't forget what the all-time great "Rowdy" Roddy Piper once said, "Just when you think you know the answers, I change the questions."
Does this quote fit like a glove? Not exactly. But tell me this, how in the world could I squeeze one of my favorite all time sayings into this post Super Bowl bonanza?
Before we tackle XLII, check out these anomalies. The Tulsa Oilers are fourth in the Central Hockey League. Not fourth overall mind you. Fourth in the Northwest Division.
The offseason brought forth an onslaught of acquisitions for the organization. They stocked up on goal scoring, defensive help and goal tending. Each area was considered an area of weakness. The Oilers filled each position with big names, big promises and a bright future.
There are only two months left in the CHL's regular season and you can bet the Oilers will not partake in the postseason festivities.
One stat that transcends across sports lines is home field advantage, or home ice advantage. Check out these numbers. Home 7-11-2. Road 7-13-1. The home and away records for this group are approximately identical.
By comparison, even the worst team in the league is markedly better at home than on the road. The Wichita Thunder is 9-12 at home compared to 3-15-1 on the road.
How do the Oilers not enjoy a home ice advantage? It defies all logical thinking.
Here are more numbers to stoke the fire.
Right wing Jeff Christian is the 15th leading scorer in the CHL. He posted a fantastic 24-game point streak to boot. However, the struggles of this team could be summed up with this number: -8
When the top player on your team is a paltry -8 in plus/minus, you're not going to win many games.
The Oilers game plan heading into the season was a strong forecheck. Things looked brilliant on paper but considerably thinner on ice. A dedicated forecheck produces mental errors and fatigue by opponents which leads to opportunities.
The team has the fewest power play opportunities in the league. The team's five-game home losing streak is also a high in the league to date.
They've managed to lose by four points or more seven times this season. One of the embarrassing defeats came at the hands of the Oklahoma City Blazers by a score of 8-1.
Oilers games are still fun and exciting to watch live. However, this is not what the front office dreamt up in the offseason. They envisioned a winning attitude heading up the transition from Convention Center to BOK Center next year.
For the record, if you are curious how the Oklahoma City team is doing in their Ford Center location, be curious no more.
The Blazers far and away lead the league in attendance figures. They are averaging more than 8,000 per home game. Will Tulsans show the same enthusiasm when the Oilers embark on their BOK mission?
Can the Tulsa Oilers turn this clunker of a season around in time to at least tease the city for the upcoming season in the BOK Center? Visit HYPERLINK "http://www.tulsaoilers.com"; www.tulsaoilers.com for ticket and team information.
Too Good to be True
Back to the Q and A. The predominant answer was "Patriots big." The question? What is going to happen in SB XLII?
Someone changed the question. A day prior to the big game it was discovered that perhaps the Patriots cheated their way to their first Super Bowl victory. They were allegedly caught videotaping the Rams redzone walkthroughs the day prior to SB XXXVI. The question now stands, how much cheating did these guys really do?
The Pats versus Giants contest wasn't aesthetically pleasing to casual viewers. It was an intriguing contest to football enthusiast but not one for the annals of pro football history.
Many had christened this New England Patriots team the best of all time prior to the final game. This is the society we live in. Everyone is in a hurry to be the first on record. Correctness be damned. It is a sad state.
It took 57 minutes and 28 seconds for the Patriots to go up by a score of 14-10. It took an additional two minutes and seven seconds for the G-men to march the length of the field. They took the lead for good with 35 seconds remaining in the contest. 17-14 New York "Football" Giants.
No one can take away from the Patriots 18-1 record. All the "best team ever" talk was premature inauguration.
Cheating the system, dirty play and a general apathy toward the game angered the football gods. Even in defeat, Bill Belichick showed his true mark. He left the field before the final snap and took the majority of his sore loser squad with him. Unbelievable. Bitter 'til the end.
Tom Brady was beaten and battered all night long, but don't feel too bad for the old chap. He's still hanging with Gisele Bundchen.
On a positive Patriot note, how 'bout Oklahoma native Wes Welker? I can't believe Keith Burns turned this kid away from the University of Tulsa coming out of high school. Actually, yes I can. Slow, short and white are not your prototypical receiver attributes. Still, it's funny to think about. TU reject to Super Bowl star.
A few side notes from the Fox broadcast. We understand Peyton is Eli's brother. No need to show him after every big Giants play. Mix in a few excited Giants players while you're at it.
Paula Abdul needs to give it up. All of it. Her pregame performance was the most embarrassing thing she has done since last weeks American Idol judging performance. She should embark on her next career of commercials- "This is your brain on drugs."
Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers did an admirable job at halftime. It has inspired me to grow a full beard and hang out with old guys to enhance my appearance and vigor.
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