All posts by Stanzo

Rutgers alum & avid Yankee fan. Painfully addicted to Twitter. I tell terrible jokes 95% of the time, the other 5% are probably above average.

20 Best Games I’ve Watched in My 20 Years of Life

Turning 20 is honestly a really insignificant birthday. Sure, I’m not a teenager anymore, but that’s basically it. I still can’t legally buy alcohol, go to a bar, or gamble in a casino. However, one thing I do realize on my 20th birthday is how many awesome sporting events I’ve watched in my life. Here are the top 20 sporting events I’ve seen, in person or on television, in my lifetime. This list is obviously pretty biased towards my favorite teams (Yankees, Giants, Rutgers), and I didn’t include any games from before 2004 because I can’t remember too much before that.

20. Giants beat Cowboys 10-7 on Sunday Night Football, 12/11/16

The Cowboys came into this game 11-1, with the 1 loss already coming from the Giants in Week 1. However, the media insisted all week that this was a “different Cowboys team,” and that rookie QB Dak Prescott had matured a lot since Week 1. While that may have been true, Eli Manning and the Giants did what they do best and embraced the underdog role to beat Dallas.

19. 2016 World Series Game 7

I’m not a Cubs fan, but ever since I’ve visited Wrigley Field a few years ago they’ve been my favorite National League team to watch. This extra-inning thriller embodied everything playoff baseball should be, and ended with the Cubs bringing home their first championship in 108 years.

18. 2015 Women’s World Cup Final

I literally only care about soccer during the World Cup, so seeing our women’s team win it in 2015 was awesome. Especially with Rutgers alum Carli Lloyd leading the charge with a hat trick in just 16 minutes.

17. Rutgers Football beats Michigan in 2014

Not quite the 77-0 loss I had to witness this year. RU beating Michigan at home for its first Big Ten win was awesome to watch. Still waiting for a game where I can storm the field while I’m there.

16. 2017 NCAA Basketball Final

Being a Rutgers basketball fan means not having anyone to root for in March Madness. UNC has been my tournament team since I was little. Seeing them win this year was awesome, especially after the heartbreaker they lost in 2016.

15. Jeter “Dive” Game vs. Red Sox, 2004

I was young, but I remember watching this game. At the height of the Yankees/Red Sox rivalry, the captain puts his body on the line to make an unbelievable catch, and John Flaherty wins it in the 13th.

14. Jeremy Lin drops 25 to beat Nets (2012)

The start of Linsanity, the last time it wasn’t miserable being a Knicks fan. Those were the days.

13. Luis Castillo game

No explanation needed. Not being a Mets fan is the birthday gift that keeps on giving.

12. Rutgers Basketball beats Wisconsin at home (2015)

I was there for this one. Pretty cool to see Rutgers beat the team that should’ve won the national championship that year, even if Frank Kaminsky didn’t play.

11. Giants win Conference Championship over 49ers (2012)

Giants OT win to go back to the Super Bowl? Unreal game. Also, fuck Colin Kaepernick.

10. Jeter’s last game at Yankee Stadium

Still gives me goosebumps every time

9. 2013 NBA Finals Game 6

I feel weird putting this above some of the Yankee wins because I wasn’t a Heat fan at all, but this was an unbelievable game. I’ve been a LeBron fan for awhile too, so that’s another reason this cracked my top 10. Ray Allen with one of the most clutch shots of all-time too.

8. 2009 ALDS Game 2

I know this was only the ALDS, but it would’ve been really demoralizing to go into Minnesota with the series tied. A-Rod, in his lone postseason where he wasn’t totally useless, tied it in the 9th before Teix finished it in extras. Great game.

7. Giants win 2007 NFC championship

Lawrence Tynes! Bring on the Patriots, baby!

6. George Steinbrenner game (2010)

I was at this game, so it’s higher on my list than most people would have it. Pre-game ceremony honoring the recently deceased Boss, as well as Bob Sheppard, before Swisher hits a walk-off. The stadium was going crazy.

5. Rutgers Beats Louisville

The original Rutgers Football upset. Can’t relate tbh.

4. 2016 NBA Finals Game 7

People forget the Warriors blew a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals. LeBron finally brings a championship to Cleveland in one of the best basketball games ever.

3. Super Bowl XLVI

Did you know no one has beaten Tom Brady in the Super Bowl besides the Giants?

2. 2009 World Series Game 6

The Yankees are my favorite team in any sport, and seeing them win a championship was a ton of fun. Greatest franchise in the history of professional sports. Can’t wait to add more trophies with this new crop of guys.

1. Super Bowl XLII

Did I mention the Giants were the only team to beat Brady in the Super Bowl… and they did it twice? Tyree catch, Plax in the end zone, perfect season ruined. Greatest Super Bowl and sporting event of all time, don’t @me.

It may only have been 20 years, but I feel like I’ve seen a lifetime’s worth of great games.

Some Situations Comparable to This Year’s NBA Conference Finals

You might be surprised to hear this, but both NBA Conference Finals series have been pretty brutal to watch this year. The Spurs look lost without Kawhi Leonard while taking on possibly the greatest on-paper NBA team ever, the Warriors, in the West. Likewise, the Isaiah Thomas-less Celts are even more screwed against LeBron and the Cavs than they were before their All-Star point guard went down. While Warriors-Cavs round 3 promises to be a great NBA Finals, these series are absolutely pathetic excuses for playoff basketball, or basketball at all. Adam Silver and company probably cringe just watching Kelly Olynyk pretend to know what he’s doing out there- I know the rest of America is.

There is a 0% chance I watch any more of the remaining games in either series. The thought of tuning in makes me feel uncomfortable. So uncomfortable, that here are some situations I would compare to watching any more of either series:

-A sex scene coming on while watching a movie with your parents

-Walking into a department store and asking where the selection of male rompers are located

-Seeing someone on campus you met at a party, but not being sure if they remember you well enough to say hi since you were both trashed

-Walking into an exam you didn’t remember you had until the night before

You get my point. Watching these games is not just boring, but actually cringe-worthy. I’m not gonna waste my time watching 30-point losses, or even the highlights for that matter. If I see one more clip of Greg Popovich being rude to a reporter for no reason and everyone laughing out loud like it’s a joke straight out of Step Brothers, I’m gonna lose it. Get over it, Pop, you didn’t have any chance with Kawhi, but it’s embarassing how bad you are without him. As for the Celtics, at least you have the #1 pick. I’d hold onto that if I were them, maybe by the time Markelle Fultz develops, LeBron will have come back down to Earth. But for now, he’s playing like one of the Monstars, and the Celtics are playing like KD after he lost his abilities in Thunderstruck. (Did Kevin Durant really think doing a knockoff Space Jam was a good idea? Did he think he wasn’t gonna get mocked for it? As if the movie wasn’t based in Oklahoma fucking City? One of the many reasons I hate that guy.)

People have been predicting a Warriors/Cavs finals since Game 7 ended last year, so it’s no surprise that that’s what we’re gonna get (Except for the people who insisted the Cavs weren’t making it out of the East this year. Those are the worst kind of people.) But I wish the build-up was a little better. There’s no other sport where the difference between the top 2 teams and the rest of the league is this wide. It’s a crime that the NBA expects us to watch these games (The Finals start June 1, in case you were wondering.)

Don’t try and explain it to us, NBA. Just get better.

P.S. Can we all just agree that Steph Curry’s mom is a straight GILF and get on with our lives? If my wife still looks like this when we have grandkids, I’ll consider myself a lucky guy.

steph curry mom

 

The Performance of Yankee First Basemen This Year Would Make Don Mattingly Roll Over In His Grave

First of all, I know Don Mattingly is technically still alive. But when you go from being the star first baseman for the New York Yankees to managing the Miami Marlins, you probably die a little inside. Anyway, to say the Yankees’ first basemen this year have not performed up to the standards of Don Mattingly is like saying Golden Grahams isn’t as good as Cinnamon Toast Crunch. They are so inferior that it actually makes you angry they pretend to be the same thing. I wouldn’t even call Chris Carter Golden Grahams, he’s more like Raisin Bran without any raisins.

Greg Bird came into the season as the starting first baseman after a huge spring training in which he hit .451 with 8 home runs, both team highs. However, he has started the season an abysmal 6-60, with three of the six hits coming in the same game against the Cardinals. He was placed on the DL on May 3rd after reportedly dealing with an ankle injury that he sustained late in spring training. Hopefully, the time off will help Bird return to his 2015 form, when he hit 11 home runs in just 46 games. This would complete the Yankees’ three-headed monster of young bats, along with Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez.

As far as Bird’s replacement, Chris Carter, there isn’t much to say. This guy somehow led the NL in home runs last year, even though he did bat .222. I would take that for a backup first baseman, but Carter hasn’t even been hitting homers this year- he has only 2 in 28 games to go along with a .213 average. There have been some Yankees over the years whose presence in games just really pisses me off. Tanyon Sturtze coming in to pitch in 2005, A-Rod batting in any non-2009 playoff game, and now Chris Fucking Carter coming to bat. People are always talking about how to speed up MLB games, and I’ve got a great idea. Just charge the Yankees with an out every time Carter comes up to bat. I don’t need to waste any more time watching this guy try to bat. If I wanted to see someone attempt things they can’t possibly achieve, I’d watch a Mets game.

So please, get better Greg Bird. It’s what Donnie Baseball would have wanted.

Can’t Tell if This Girl Who Called Out Her Cheating Boyfriend at Prom is a Boss Ass Bitch or Just a Buzzkill

Prom is probably the only thing I miss from high school aside from high school sports. Getting dressed to the nines with your boys, eating some dope ass food, and just having an overall fun time. Girls always got a little more worked up about prom than us guys did, between looking for dresses, “prom dieting”, and just general girl drama. However, this chick took it to another level after getting cheated on by her boyfriend. Take a look.

Pretty ballsy move. Didn’t understand what the fuck getting in a car crash had to do with anything, but seems like an overall shitty week for this girl. Not really sure what to think about this honestly. On the one hand, good for her for calling this guy out, cheating is way too common these days. Then again, these kids are freaking seniors in high school. Odds are they were about to break up anyway, and unless they’re one of those couples who dated for the entirety of high school, she may have went a little over the top. This kid seems like he’s gonna be just fine though, as he looked unphased to the point where it’s debatable whether or not this was staged. This kid fucks, give him a bid.

When 4/5 bets in a parlay hit and the last one misses

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Why Banning Greek Life Isn’t the Answer

The death of Penn State sophomore Timothy Piazza earlier this year is one of the more upsetting stories of 2017 thus far. Piazza had accepted his bid at Beta Theta Pi, and fell down the stairs at the fraternity house after being forced to drink a ton. Fraternities and hazing have been a hot button topic for years now, and the Piazza story has been one of the most talked about in recent memory. One of the people to write about it is Jonathan Zimmerman, a UPenn professor. In his article, Close down all fraternities, he calls for universities to stop recognizing fraternities all together. After reading the whole thing, I can honestly say this guy’s argument makes little to no sense. You can read Zimmerman’s article here.

First off, let me say this. The actions of the Penn State Beta Theta Pi brothers that night are inexcusable. No one should be forced to drink that much alcohol in such a short amount of time, but the worst part is how long it took them to call for help. Clearly, some of the brothers knew Piazza hit his head, and knew how badly he needed to go to the hospital. This is the saddest part of the whole story to me. Fraternities are about brotherhood, always being there for the guys next to you. Even though Piazza was just a pledge, that same mentality should extend. You should do anything to help your brother, despite the possible repercussions for the fraternity. Even worse than that, where’s the basic sense of human decency? Piazza was clearly more than just a kid who had a little too much to drink, and they let a young man lose his life far too soon. Hopefully, all those kids will get the justice they deserve, even though they can never really make up for what they did. They took the lives of one of their own, and left his parents without their son. As devastating as this incident was, and as much as I believe everything possible should be done to prevent it from happening again, I don’t think colleges banning Greek life is the answer. Here’s why.

First of all, I can speak from a similar experience that the overwhelming majority of fraternities would not have handled that situation as poorly as Beta Theta Pi did that night. At my fraternity’s last party my freshman year, a girl passed out from drinking too much. This girl didn’t even have much, if anything to drink at the party, she was already drunk before she came. Letting her in at all was a risk management mistake from the start, as she probably should have been taken home by a friend or gotten help rather than attend another party. Of course, my brothers did what any decent human being would do and called her an ambulance. She ended up being okay, but we still paid the price. Even though we were not at fault for her getting as drunk as she did, we were charged with a year of social probation for serving alcohol at the party. Clearly this is the type of punishment the Beta Theta Pi brothers feared when they  decided not to call an ambulance for Piazza. However, just because they made this horrible error in judgment does not mean you can generalize it to every fraternity in the nation.

The other reason banning Greek life is not the answer is because it would probably have more of a negative impact than positive. Let me explain. Fraternities recognized by universities have to abide by certain rules, and are regulated by student and school bodies. By banning Greek life, you would lose this. Sure, there wouldn’t be any official “fraternities,” but there would still be very similar underground organizations. These would basically be fraternities without the regulation of schools, allowing them to get away with much more when it comes to hazing, partying, etc. Even Zimmerman points to two cases of non-fraternity hazing incidents in his article, one with the Florida A&M marching band and the other with the Harvard men’s soccer team. Would banning fraternities from college campuses satisfy some outsiders who are outraged over the trouble some cause? Sure. But it would not help prevent another death like Timothy Piazza’s.

If getting rid of fraternities isn’t the answer, what is? It’s hard to say, but I think there are a few things that could help. First off, everyone in Greek life who would act the same way the Beta Theta Pi brothers did that night needs a reality check. Either do the right thing when someone needs help, or don’t be a part of Greek life. Fraternities are about brotherhood and having each other’s backs; if you wouldn’t make a simple phone call to save a brother’s (or pledge’s) life, you do not deserve to be a brother. Second, put more Good Samaritan laws in place, for college kids especially. Good Samaritan laws protect people who call help for those in need from any legal liability. This could help save lives, but ideally you’d rather prevent people from being in positions of needing saving at all. My final idea is to lower the drinking age from 21 to 19. If everyone could theoretically drink legally once they are in college, the need for drinking at private places such as fraternities becomes diminished. It’s much harder to drink past your limit at a bar than it is an off-campus party, fraternity or not.

None of these solutions would eliminate the risk for alcohol-related deaths, but they could certainly help. The only thing we can do is remember that if someone is in need of help, it’s our moral obligation to provide it for them. No amount of potential trouble is worth risking someone losing their life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Draw the Line at LaVar Ball Coming After My Girl Kristine Leahy

This blog hasn’t even been up for a week yet, and here we are talking about LaVar Ball. Throw in a couple Deflategate stories and an article about why anyone should give a shit about whether or not Tim Tebow gets promoted to AA, and we’re basically fuckin’ ESPN. Don’t worry, I don’t plan on talking about this clown often. But he did something yesterday that is necessary to talk about.

Everyone knows LaVar Ball is basically the Donald Trump of basketball. What do I mean by that? He repeatedly says/tweets dumb shit, it gets people’s attention, they talk about it. He’s claimed he would beat Jordan 1-on-1, claimed Lonzo is better than Steph Curry right now, and even blamed UCLA’s “slow white guys” as the reason they didn’t win the championship. The bullshit continued on The Herd on FS1 yesterday. Take a look for yourself.

 

 

First things first, I’m a big Kristine Leahy guy. She’s an absolute babe, and she actually knows her shit. FS1 is already lightyears ahead of ESPN, and her and Colin are two big reasons why. Anyway, I get LaVar’s whole act. Clearly, he’s gonna come on the show, be a total dick to Kristine for no reason, and get a ton of publicity from articles like this one. That’s just not okay. Coming after someone who had you on their show for attention is crazy disrespectful, and disrespecting women is definitely not okay. It’s really sad because Lonzo Ball can really fucking play. The kid has a good shot to become a perennial All-Star, yet the first thing you think when you hear “Lonzo Ball” is his buffoon of a father who averaged 2.2 PPG in one season of college basketball.

Kristine came out to defend herself later on on FS1’s Speak for Yourself.

You go, girl. Nothing hotter than good-looking women who know what they’re talking about when it comes to sports, and it was awesome for her to call LaVar out on his bullshit. Can’t wait to see how many more dozens of $500 shoes this guy will pretend to sell.

PS- if there’s any way to repair his image, it’s by doing more videos with Lil Dicky. One of the most likeable guys I can think of.

Male Rompers are One of the Worst Ideas I’ve Ever Heard, and I’ve Heard a Lot of Bad Ideas

I was scrolling through Twitter during the Celtics/Wizards game last night, and it was pretty uneventful. Aside from a few funny Avril Lavigne conspiracy tweets, nothing of note. Until I saw this.

These look like a cross between a “my Dad is a lawyer, I’ll park my Porsche where I want” frat douchebag outfit and a “it’s more than paying for friends, it’s a bond of sisters for life” sorority girl outfit. Quite possibly the single worst piece of clothing I have ever laid eyes on. There’s a limit to how fratdouche you can dress, and this is way past the line.

The key aspect they’re overlooking is how tough it is gonna be to pee when you’re wearing one of these. One of the best things about being a guy at a dage is being able to piss behind the nearest tree or bush. 30 seconds, done. Not if you’re wearing one of these. Gotta find a bathroom and wait in line with every single girl at the party, and I’ll be damned if I wait for anything at a dage besides a beer.

Whoever thought this was a good idea needs to take a minute, go back to the drawing board, and bash themselves over the head with it. There hasn’t been an idea this bad since Prohibition.

Why There Can’t Be Another Jeter

I’ve got no problem admitting I can be a little brainwashed when it comes to the Yankees, especially Derek Jeter. But there are just certain aspects of his career that can not be replicated. He may never have been then most talented player the Yankees had when I was growing up (that was probably A-Rod for most years) and despite his dependability, probably wasn’t even the most consistent (Mariano Rivera was), but no athlete will ever be able to crush life the way Jeter did.

For 19 seasons, he was the starting shortstop for the most famous franchise in sports. His Hall-of-Fame career aligned perfectly with the rise of the internet and social media, allowing fans to be more connected to their favorite athletes than ever before. How one man can play that long in as prominent a role as he had in New York City and never have one blemish on his public image is astounding. Look at the other star athletes to play in New York recently. Odell Beckham jr. partying on a yacht in Miami days before the Giants traveled to Green Bay for a playoff game, Carmelo Anthony going through a nasty split with his wife LaLa, and basically anything A-Rod did between the years 2004 and 2009. While a lot of these things should be considered insignificant to the team’s performances (who gives a shit if 20-something pro athletes want to have a good time in Miami on an off-day), they ultimately matter. They bring unwanted attention to your franchise, they increase the pressure to win. If the Giants win that game, or Odell had 10 catches for 150 yards in a loss, the yacht story is all but dead. Instead, he catches 4 balls for 28 yards with 3 drops as the Giants get crushed. Did this have anything to do with him partying on a yacht 5 days earlier? Anyone with half a brain would probably say no, but the public perception of Odell is now that he’s a partier who isn’t serious about winning.

The perfect, most recent example of why we’ll never see another Jeter is Matt Harvey. Here’s a guy who was absolutely electric when he came up with the Mets a few years ago, and looked to be the next big baseball star in New York. He even said in 2013 of Jeter, “That guy is the model. I mean, first off, let’s just look at the women he’s dated. Obviously, he goes out – he’s meeting these girls somewhere – but you never hear about it. That’s where I want to be.” Clearly, that is not where he is, after the Mets suspended him 3 games for failing to show up to a game after a night of partying at 1OAK. What’s worse, he was reportedly there because he was upset that his ex, Adriana Lima, was seen out with the Patriots’ Julian Edelman. Could you imagine Derek Jeter missing a game because some girl he used to date was with another dude? Barstool Sports’ Kevin Clancy said it best last week, “Jeter didn’t chase pussy, pussy chased Jeter.”

Of course I miss watching Jeter play every day. He was one of the best shortstops in the game for his entire career, and he hustled like he was a September call-up trying to earn his spot rather than the perennial All-Star that he was. But the Yankees are just fine without him. Didi Gregorious is a pleasure to watch play shortstop every day, and Gary Sanchez and Aaron Judge seem to be two of the biggest rising stars in baseball. But no one will ever crush life the way Derek Jeter did. Growing up with a Mariah Carey poster on your wall, only to eventually date and then dump her? Dating Minka Kelly for years, only to dump her, too? Marrying Hannah Davis? Derek Jeter is and always will be the definition of “this guy fucks.” No matter what team you support, that is surely something we can all RE2PECT.

 

 

 

 

Throwback to Dallas Braden’s Mother’s Day Perfect Game (2010)

Dallas Braden’s 2010 perfect game is one of the more touching moments in recent sports history, and certainly the best baseball Mother’s Day moment you could think of. Braden’s mother passed away of skin cancer when he was younger, and achieving the 19th perfect game in MLB history on Mother’s Day was Disney movie-esque. Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mom’s out there, today is for you! (Until the Jeter jersey retirement ceremony tonight, at least)