Michael Rand started RandBall with hopes that he could convince the world to love jumpsuits as much as he does. So far, he's only succeeded in using the word "redacted" a lot. He welcomes suggestions, news tips, links of pure genius, and pictures of pets in Halloween costumes here, though he already knows he will regret that last part.

Follow Randball on Twitter

Weekend Links with Jon Marthaler: NHL alienating its hard-core fans

Posted by: Michael Rand under Gophers, NHL news, Wolves news Updated: December 22, 2012 - 11:32 AM


Jon Marthaler bakes up a delicious batch of links for you every weekend. Other times, you can find him here. Jon?


Merry Christmas to all! When you think about it, Christmas is probably the closest thing we have to a universal day off; few people work the day, with the exception of essential services, some gas stations, and (at least in the movies) Chinese restaurants. It's the one day of the year that virtually everyone expects to have a chance to spend with their families. Even Scrooge gave Bob Crachit the day off on Christmas Day.

The one exception to this rule seems to be sports, where the NBA has no compunction about ruining Christmases far and wide. The league has a quintupleheader scheduled for Tuesday; you'll be able to watch basketball from 11 am to midnight, should you so desire. It's one thing for the home teams, who theoretically will get a chance to have Christmas morning and/or Christmas dinner fit around their schedules, but those five games have five road teams, all of whom are away from their families this holiday. The Celtics, Knicks, Rockets, Thunder, and Nuggets - sorry, guys. You're spending your Christmas on a plane and in a hotel room.

Speaking of the players is to say nothing, too, of to the thousands of other people who'll miss Christmas thanks to these games. Stadium staff, team personnel, TV crews, team beat writers - all of these folks have to give up their Christmases as well, thanks to the league's desire for holiday hoops. Spare a thought as well for a few college football teams - the Gophers among them - that have Christmas Day scheduling issues.

The jokes all say that most people can't wait to escape their families on Christmas, but the truth is that most of us relish the chance to get together and celebrate. This year, though, I'll be thinking about all of those people who give up that chance as a blessing to the rest of us - not just nurses and doctors and firefighters, but Kevin Durant and James Harden, and all of the ESPN announcers, and the Staples Center staffers, and all of the football players across the country who'll eat Christmas dinner in a team lounge. Merry Christmas, everyone. Thanks for giving up your day to make it better for the rest of us.

On with the links:

*I want to print out this Steve Rushin column about hockey, and hand-deliver a copy to every owner, possibly by stapling it to his forehead. If somebody wanted to dump a hundred thousand copies on the houses of Jeremy Jacobs and Craig Leipold, I'll start buying printer ink. Dear NHL: You're not alienating casual fans now; none of them now exist. You're alienating your actual fans, and we're a disappearing breed. You're on your way to second place in CANADA, and if you lose Canada you might as well fold up shop.

*This three-part interview at The Classical with the guys behind Fire Joe Morgan was absolutely delightful. Here's Part 1, here's part two, and here's part three.

*Brian Phillips of Grantland heads to the rodeo finals in Las Vegas, and the whole thing becomes a wonderful mishmash of one part stranger-in-a-strange-land diary, one part Vegas travel journalism, and one part elegiac rumination on his lost Oklahoma childhood. It's tremendous.

*And finally: not only am I now convinced that squash should be an Olympic sport, I'm also convinced that it is the greatest sport ever invented.


Post By Category

Arts (1) Books (1)
Movies (3) Music (6)
Hobbies (1) Fishing (1)
Society (3) Crime (1)
Sports (523) Baseball (1)
Professional baseball (786) Basketball (13)
College basketball (6) Football (1)
College football (118) Professional football (560)
Technology (1) Food and drink (14)
Politics (1) Transportation (1)
Employment (1) Career development (1)
Cooking (2) Pets (1)
Vikings (1075) Men (3)
Games (1) Gambling (1)
Commercial (1) Animals (3)
Dogs (3) Gripes (1)
Newspapers (1) Beer (6)
Minnesota wine retailers (1) Wine retail + marketing (1)
Bad driving (1) Commuting (1)
High School Sports (1) Family activities (1)
Style (2) Pregnancy (1)
Car buying (1) Retirement (1)
Shopping (1) Chickens (2)
Fruit and berries (1) Weather (1)
Internet (2) Twitter (2)
Video games (2) Web pick (1)
YouTube (1) Birds in the backyard (1)
Business trends (2) Loopholes (1)
Problems on the job (1) The rich get richer (1)
Airlines (1) Midwest getaways (1)
Road trips (1) Skiing (1)
Travel deals (1) Wisconsin (3)
Gopher road games (1) TCF Bank Stadium (1)
NCAA: football (124) Basketball on TV (2)
Gophers coaches (1) Frozen Four (11)
North Dakota (1) College hockey (20)
Fantasy football (12) Golf (84)
Minnesota state tournaments (20) Preps (8)
Soccer (93) WNBA (16)
Wild news (8) Wolves news (393)
NFC (2) Super Bowl (1)
Vikings coaches (1) Behind the scenes (3)
Celebrities (1) Dance (1)
Local TV and radio (2) Ex-players (1)
Injury report (2) Baseball wisdom (1)
Target Field (262) Twins fans (807)
Twins game coverage (17) Twins management (3)
Twins offense (1) Twins pitching (3)
NBA playoffs (1) Wolves draft news (1)
Wolves guards (1) Wolves players (9)
Values and morals (2) Miscreants (1)
Wild coaching (67) Wild game coverage (3)
Wild off-season news (1) Wild player moves (3)
Wild pregame skate (1) Wild trade news (1)
Movies (1) Buffalo Lake-Hector (1)
Ortonville (2) Brad Childress (1)
Stillwater (1) Television (2)
NHL news (97) Outdoors Women (1)
Olympics (2) Olympic hockey (1)
Glen Perkins (1) Health + Beauty (1)
Beer (2) Wine (1)
Public safety (1) Gophers (203)
Pen Pals (1)
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters