Piffcast: The Comeback-cast

After a nice long break, the Piffcast is back! It’s been a month, so Mike and TJ had some catching up to do…

– Developing a Kris Bryant’s up-to-bat Alert App
– Comic-Con Trailer Roundup
– TJ’s movie homework (including some Mark Ruffalo recommendations)
– What we’re watching on TV (Stranger Things, The Night Of)
– The Pokemon around Mike’s house (don’t go looking)
– Coldplay at Soldier Field and K-Pop ‘farms’
– A special thank you to awesome people

…and much more!

Join the conversation on Facebook or TwitterYou can subscribe to The Piffcast on iTunes too.

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Piffcast: Memorial Day 2016 w/ The Next James Bond, Riot Fest and More

For your Memorial Day Listening, Michael and TJ give their guests a breather and cover a vast array of topics all on their own. They discuss their favorites of the NEXT James Bond candidates, some of our favorite video games, the Riot Fest Chicago lineup, Game of Thrones (per usual), and all the tangents that come with.

Listeners ALSO get in on the fun by asking ANYTHING and the guys do their best to answer them. Questions include: The #1 Sport for America, Favorite Simpsons Characters, Sports to add to the Olympics, and our favorite things to do in Chicago.

Follow for more on Facebook or Twitter. You can subscribe to The Piffcast on iTunes too.

NBA Draft Lottery: Does Dikembe Mutombo Know Something We Don’t?

Just hours before the NBA Draft Lottery show, which airs Tuesday on ESPN at 7 PM CDT, Dikembe Mutombo tweeted a nice congratulations to the Philadelphia 76ers…

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…wait. How would Mutombo know that if they haven’t even picked the ping pong balls yet? He deleted this tweet shortly after sending it.

Maybe Mutombo misspoke. The Sixers have the best odds of snagging the #1 pick after winning only 10 games in the 2015-16 season. Their record earns them a 25% chance in the lottery. The Sixers also have the right to swap picks with the Sacramento Kings after trading them Nik Stauskas last year. The Kings have a 1.9% chance of getting the top pick in this year’s draft.

The Sixers can also have have 2 high draft picks by the end of the evening, as they also have the rights to the Los Angeles Lakers’ pick if their ball is pulled outside of the Top-3, due to a three-team deal that sent Michael Carter-Williams to the Milwaukee Bucks and Brandon Knight to Phoenix. The Lakers have the 2nd best odds of landing the top pick with 19.9%. There’s a 44.2% chance the Sixers will get the Lakers’ pick otherwise.

Or perhaps the conspiracy theorists were right and the NBA is rigged and Mutombo let the cat out of the bag. We’ll just have to wait and see for ourselves tonight. If the Sixers land the top pick, the NBA is going to have some explaining to do.

UPDATE: Mutombo is already doing damage control on Twitter. This is fun. 

Like a digital finger wag.

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Follow for more on Facebook or Twitter. You can subscribe to The Piffcast on iTunes too.

Piffcast: The Eleventh One – NFL Draft 2016

It’s Draft Week in Chicago and Eric Edholm (Shutdown Corner on Yahoo! Sports) joins the Piffcast to preview it. We talk about his process in preparing for the draft, the best overall player, trading up for the “Big 2” quarterbacks and who will be available later.  We discuss who could slide as well, and what the draft experience is like in Chicago. (31:30 mark, if you want to jump ahead)

TJ and I also go back and forth on Chicago baseball (he’s a Cubs fan, I’m a White Sox fan), moving to the city, some ideas we have for the show, and how we want to promote the things our listeners are doing. We want to hear from you! Let us know if you’re working on anything cool!

Feel free to react as you listen on Facebook or Twitter. Subscribe on iTunes here.

At Least The Chicago Bulls Have Benny…

It’s not easy being a Bulls fan these days. The team missed the playoffs for the first time since 2008. The veterans on the roster didn’t want to play in their new head coach’s system. Their star, Jimmy Butler, didn’t make it any easier. It was a hot mess.

Some of the few bright spots from the 2015-16 campaign included Etwaun Moore breaking out (like most backup Bulls guards do behind Derrick Rose) and Doug McDermott dunks. The BRIGHTEST of spots though, as it has been for a long time, was team mascot Benny The Bull.  The #BestInTheBiz has had a good year appearing in ESPN ads, bringing joy to children everywhere on off days, and giving you a reason to visit the United Center while the team struggled to themselves.

Saturday night, Benny went FULL BENNY during a stoppage in play between the Bulls and Cavaliers. It was a dance medley of epic proportions that also included help from one of the game’s officials. While the Bulls won’t be in action this postseason, at least you can replay great entertainment like this…over and over again.

Stay tuned for more on Facebook and Twitter.

Your Annual Reminder It’s Opening Day

While the weather forecast may have called for overcast skies (a day after disheartening April blizzards in Chicago), there’s still a ray of sunshine breaking through any and all mundane mediocrity clouding your life. For one day, every cliche and sports movie monologue feels as inviting as the guy selling programs when you walk through your favorite stadium’s gate.

Only a handful of teams are playing today, the Cardinals, Pirates, Blue Jays, Rays, Mets and Royals. The whole league will be in action tomorrow and the hometown love will pour over each respective ball club, but it’s amazing how we can all be just as excited today. Is it because everyone is tied for first place at this very moment? Do we forget that there are 161 games to go and anything can happen from now till October? Or is it because we just can’t help but “get romantic about baseball”?

The romance is real. It hits you when you first climb the steps from the concourse toward your seats at Wrigley Field, much like walking up a ramp to your aisle at Fenway Park when the sun starts to set. If you’re lucky enough to share that with someone, don’t take it for granted. As a White Sox fan, I lose myself in their brand new pregame montage every year, with moving music and memories. I forget I’m 28 years old and involuntary noises erupt from my windpipes as the fireworks signal it’s time to begin. There are micro-versions of these instances throughout the long regular season, but nothing compares to the first.

I could go into a long thing about hope for every team, only for someone (maybe myself) to shoot it all down with projections, sabermetrics, and the pessimistic cold hard reality check that not everyone is meant for the playoffs. However, baseball is weird…quite possibly the weirdest of the major sports. While numbers, trends, and track records are real and incredibly valid, you can’t predict injuries, suspensions, personal issues, trades or the litany of fortune-bending occurrences that are bound to happen over the next 6 months.

Also alluring is the mystery of what kind of greatness and individual accomplishments this new season will hold. Who will be the closest to batting .400? How long will someone go in their hitting-streak, and will the challenge Joe DiMaggio? Who will throw the next perfect game? Can anyone emulate the 1998 home run race between Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire (and not be busted for steroids)? Where will longtime veterans finish on the all-time lists (Alex Rodriguez, David Ortiz, Albert Pujols) and who can we get excited about to possibly surpass them someday (Bryce Harper, Mike Trout, Kris Bryant)? Who will come out of nowhere?

Right now, more than any time the rest of regular season, you can comfortably be a fan. You can be excited. You can be optimistic. You can be a full grown…kid. For a few hours at a time, you can escape to a game you love and forget about the drama and stresses of life for a little bit. It’s Opening Day. Just have fun.

Share your experiences and thoughts with me this season on Facebook or Twitter

 

Chicago Cubs Playing With Actual Baby Bears, Cutest Thing Today

Opening Day for Major League Baseball is just over a week away, April 3rd, and we’re all getting very anxious to get things rolling.

In the meantime, the 2016 World Series favorite Chicago Cubs (that’s right, just ask Vegas) are entertaining baseball fans with windshield shattering home runs and Joe Maddon dress code policy quotes.

 

Now the Cubs are blessing fans of baseball and all things cute with viral video moments, playing with actual baby bear cubs.

As the late great Mitch Hedberg once said (regarding a forklift lifting a crate of forks) “It’s so damn literal!”

For more, follow on Facebook and Twitter.