Monday, April 7, 2014

The Pursuit For Playoffs

What's Playing: Push It - Salt N Pepa

Sorry I have been away for so long friends, buddies, and fans!! You know I had to come back before the playoffs  :)

Life in NYC has been interesting...I finally got a job, so I guess that's cool but I'm still trying to get used to setting an alarm for 6:30 every morning and I'm afraid I will just never be accustomed to the AM....seriously why can't I find something suited for nocturnal people besides being a doorman or security guard.

But back to the more pressing matter, the future of our 2 New York teams in the hunt for playoff birth. We can start with the more "entertaining" team, the ol' reliable Knickerbockers. I dont know what actually has happened, but I guess Phil Jackson becoming a member of this organization really lit a fire under the teams ass.

After having a horrible month in February, in which the Knicks only recorded 2 wins, New York had a strong showing in March, registering a mere 5 losses. The Knicks' momentum stayed with them into the month of April as they registered a nice win of 30+ points over the 5th place Brooklyn Nets.

The Knicks are currently one spot shy of being in the Eastern Conference playoffs, but the playoffs are still possible. With 4 games left in the season, the Knicks find themselves splitting 3 games at home and 3 on the road. Their away games include a tough match ups against Toronto and Brooklyn. The Knicks will play the Raptors and Bulls for their final home games of the season.

However, after a crushing loss to the Wizards @ The Garden, and JR Smith's shooting expo that couldn't lift the struggling Knicks past the Heat, it seems like the playoff dreams are slipping away as Atlanta continues to strengthen their hold on the last playoff spot.


On the other hand, The New York Rangers are close to securing yet another spot in the playoffs. Currently, the Rangers sit in 5th place in the Eastern Conference, but with only 7 points between the Rangers and the teams not even in the playoffs currently, the final spots are still up for grabs. I feel pretty confident in the Rangers at least making the playoffs, but how they perform once the playoffs start has always been the 'Gers true problem.

The constant cloud hanging over the Rangers has always been there lack of consistent offensive firepower. Over the past couple of years, the organization has tried to alleviate this problem by buying some players past their prime, the most recent and obvious being Martin St. Louis (MSL). MSL is a great player, don't get me wrong, but I do not see the point in not only signing somebody who is 38, but giving a competitive team to the Rangers our captain in exchange. Now Ryan Callahan was not an offensive powerhouse by any means, but the hustle he brought to the team and every game was what every team strives to get out of their captain.

Also, if you look at the two side-by-side you can see the Tampa Bay Lightning EASILY got the better deal. MSL finally scored his first goal for the Rangers after 17 games and he has added 3 assists to that as well, bringing his total points for the Rangers to a measly 4. In the same time, and in only 16 games, Ryan Callahan has scored 6 goals for the Lightning, as well as tallying 5 assists, bringing his point total to 11 for his new team.

The Rangers would be entering the playoffs without a captain and without  a strong forward that acts as cohesion for the rest of the team. It will be interesting to see how the new looking Rangers deal with this come playoff time, in fact if the playoffs were to start today the Rangers would be playing the Lightning in the 1st round-- and the MSL / Captain Cally trade would truly play out in a hard fought series.

Only time will tell though, and for now its hoping that both New York teams make it to the post-season, however I feel hopeful and hopeless when it comes to my Rangers and Knicks.

Monday, February 24, 2014

OH! I Almost Forgot...

What's Playing: We Are The Champions - Queen


Zero moves were made at the end of the NBA trade my question is whether we even bother playing for the rest of the season or do we just submit ourselves to the power the offseason holds.

Iman is unhappy. Tyson's defense is lacking. Melo is Melo, but not mellow.

Shit is hitting the imaginary fan and hitting errybody in that locker room.


After losing two horrible games this weekend to the semi-decent at best Magic and Pelicans, the Knicks play tonight at the Garden to close out the month of February. Currently, the Knicks are 2-8 in the month with the ability to go 5-8 before the month end, but with games against the Mavericks, Heat, and Warriors I just made myself LOL at that thought. Hopefully we go 3-10, but wouldn't be surprised with 2-11. Thus another end to another disappointing season begins with the Knickerbockers. Though I might not be excited to view any game for the rest of the season, I'm certain I can speak for most New Yorkers when I say the shenanigans off the court and this offseason will be the real entertainment.

Sucks to suck.

USA! USA! U....S.....A?

What's Playing: You're The Best - Joe Esposito

Finally the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi are over. Now for those that didn't watch the Olympics because the Big Bang Theory marathon was on, let me drag out this thought a little more.

I personally LOVE the Olympics, summer or winter, even though the majority of the time I do tune in to view (at least for winter) it's figure skating or ice dancing, don't ask me the difference between them I can't tell. However, for the main event, Men's Ice Hockey, Our United States players decided to take some days off when it mattered most.

Going in I predicted Canada to win....let's be real if I was Canadian I would just play hockey too, so I'm not surprised. The thing that surprised, disgusted, and disturbed me was the performance of USA in the "playoff" matches between Canada and Finland.

The USA vs. Canada game was great to watch, filled with skillful stick-handling and jaw-dropping passes, but come 5 minutes into the 3rd period with the US trailing 1-0, a sense of doubt clouded over the Americans. The 3rd periopd proved to all viewers that Canada should win the game, and they did. It was a tough 1-0 loss but it was a good fight.

However, now with Gold not even possible, you would think the Americans would have a fire to get onto the podium. With one match left, and bronze on the line, the United States faced a surprisingly strong Finland team. With a handful of NHL players, the Fins were able to beat hometown Russia and had a strong showing up until the game versus the United States, which only further emphasised their greatness as a TEAM. The Canada game was disappointing, the Finland game was disgusting.

In case you didn't watch, USA ended up losing 5-0. They essentially played like they did in the 3rd period against Canada, except for the whole 60 minutes. On paper the score would be reversed, and USA would/were heavy favorites. Unfortunately, Finland harnessed a great power, teamwork. It was the same story of their success against Russia. Finland proved that teamwork wins over talent.

I just hope that the Rangers active in the Olympics come back home to the Garden this Thursday with some pep in their step.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

NYC...For Now

What's Playing: Mase - Welcome Back

Greetings readers! I've missed you all and I can only hope the feeling is mutual :)

Since the last post, I've finally freed myself from the 610-shackles and have returned to my glorious hometown of NYC. I'm happy to have finally left Lehigh, but now there are more serious matters at hand waiting for me back home.

If you are like me in any way, you have almost come to dread the winter sports season here in NYC. With an astounding record of 19-29, the New York Knicks seems almost too happy being in the middle of arguably the worst division in professional basketball, and are essentially honored to have playoff position in their sights as they sit at 10th place in the Eastern Conference (2 GB of the 8th spot Bobcats).

Between J.R. untying players' shoes at the free-throw blocks, Bargnani believing he can actually thwap from beyond the arc, and the combo of Felton/Chandler putting up some skeptical play at best, the Knicks have become the laughing stock of NYC sports. Amar'e is happily being paid to punch walls, sit down, and essentially stretch...all the while 'Melo is dropping buckets trying to increase his already high player value for the upcoming free agency. The Knicks have gone from hopeful to awful and it is interesting to see how Woodson will deal with the rest of the season seeing as the Eastern Conference Playoff Picture is a slew of average teams alongside the Pacers and Heat.

Though the same cannot be said verbatim, the New York Rangers have had an interesting season so far, a little bit past the halfway mark. The Rangers sit 8 games above .500, while harboring 3 overtime losses. New head coach Alain Vigneault has already left his mark by dishing out struggling defencemen Del Zotto to the predators for an even older defencemen in Kevin Klein. Though the Rangers are in a better position, and sorry but call me bias a better team, than the Knicks it is fair to assume attention of NY sports fans might switch heavily towards hockey. I think most fans just feel let down when the Knicks get blown out, because they doubt to see any progress in the future. On the other hand, when the Rangers lose there's always a sense of the "next game" to recover.

It will be interesting to see how the season plays out for both NY teams. The Rangers will be taking an extended break shortly from the 9th-21st of February so that players can go to Sochi and represent their respective nations. The Knicks continue their dreadful season tonight against a strong Trailblazers team, but if they are able to string a few wins together and stop the typical Knick "shenanigans" not only the playoffs, but a strong spot in the playoffs, is easily capibly in a heavily handicapped Eastern Conference.

All in all, I just hope I get through the season and don't feel like CeeLo Green by the end of it.


Monday, November 25, 2013

BIG things poppin'

the SMALL apple can be no more in a few weeks. I will be graduating from school, and thus moving back to New York City for good in the beginning of December. I enjoyed creating, writing, and managing the SMALL apple, and I thank all of you who viewed my pages...I hope you enjoyed them!

I will always know what it is like to live in Bethlehem, but now that I will no longer have the constant comparison I need to find a new focus for tSa. It is going to be hard, and I encourage any suggestions from you, the reader. I will try to post frequently, but I will only post if I have something unique to say in a sea of many bloggers.

Leave a comment or a suggestion if you wish to help form the SMALL apple! :)

Monday, November 11, 2013

Long Hair Don't Even Care

What's Playing: Mr. Carter- Lil' Wayne

We have reached arguably the greatest month out of the year for men, November. To many it is called "Movember" to others it is called "No Shave November," regardless it is a time for men to show how gnarly and untamed their faces can really be.

I have taken quite a liking to November and the whole facial hair craze ever since I graduated from boarding school in Connecticut. It was the first time I was introduced to the facial hair lifestyle thanks to fellow hockey and lacrosse bros.

I will always support this month. It is a time to let sophistication go by the wayside and let your inner animal out into the wild...roar

No Shave October, November....maybe December?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Where The Beats Never End

What's Playing: Where The Beats... - Scooter

Bethlehem needs an establishment, venue, area to provide musical entertainment to both students and residents. Musical venues within a town should be a given. I've been lucky enough to be raised in NYC with one of the richest and diverse music scenes.

I love going to musical shows. I say show because I've been in traditional "concert" settings like Meatloaf at the Beacon Theatre, as well as "experiences" like going to Electric Zoo all 5 years it's been on Randalls Island.

I was recently reminded of this major difference in "hometowns" this past weekend when I was in NYC and was able to see Boys Noize at Output in Brooklyn. It was an intimate venue, certainly more towards a club/lounge than venue, but still an enjoyable place I would recommend and will go to in the future.

Now, as I sit in my house in Pennsylvania, I realize I have no music scene to go to. I could go to one of the many bars, where I am sure to hear the same 80s playlist I have been listening to for the past 4 years. I could hear the rambling townies at an open-mic night at Molly's or an involuntary game of karaoke at Sotto's. Needless to say the options are few. SteelStacks and Sands have shed some light on the little town of Bethlehem, though. They both offer good music, but their schedules are sporatic to say the least, and unless you're trying to cough up top dollar you might as well forget it.

If there are any people seeking business ideas out there, bring an establishment with some musical aspect to Bethlehem. I guarantee you will succeed.

EPIC Night @ Terminal 5