Wild: This is completely anecdotal, and has no basis in fact, it is only my own observation, but whenever a team plays well over a stretch and then loses a game to a good team, people rationalize it with, “oh well, they were playing well, this is surely just a bump in the road, surely they will be right back next game.” Except then they go out and give up a hat trick to a rookie for the Columbus Blue Jackets and lose 4-1. This always happens. The Twins win the first two of a series and drop the third and everyone’s thinking 2 of 3 ain’t bad, and then they go out and lose the next series. Each loss counts the same, you don’t play a different game against the Flyers just because you took 7 of 8 points against some good competition in the last four.
You can’t lose your perspective after every loss, but at the same time I think sometimes a little too much perspective is a bad thing. Focus on the game in front of you is my advice. Having said that I’m going to look ahead to the end of the season and say that I am willing to predict right now that this team will not earn anything higher than a 7 seed in the playoffs. That means a first round date with Detroit or San Jose. I don’t think any Wild fan likes the chances of success in those series.
On the plus side I’m going to attend the Wild’s home game against the Ducks this upcoming Saturday, so then I’ll be able to see it all first hand. Perhaps that will make me more optimistic.
Sunderland Black Cats: A late score earned them a draw with Middlesbrough. I wish they would just rattle off a couple in a row to get themselves a bit more clear of the relegation zone, but at least we earned a point on the road this weekend. The three teams currently bringing up the rear of the league (Tottenham, Blackburn, and West Brom) combined for zero points, so Sunderland is three points clear in a four-way tie at 23 points (6 wins 5 draws in 21 games).
The Cats have Aston Villa and Fulham remaining in January in addition to an FA Cup matchup with Blackburn. Hopefully we can get at least 2 or 3 points in the standings and another Cup victory.
Went to see The Wrestler on Friday night. First off, Mickey Rourke is great, I’m not arguing with anything that’s been said about his performance. Initially, walking out of the theater I was a bit disappointed in the movie as a whole. But after giving it a couple of days, I think that I have upgraded it from disappointment, to a pretty good movie. Rourke (Randy the Ram) and his love interest (Marisa Tomei as stripper Pam, stage name Cassidy), both have two personas, but while Pam keeps tightly defined lines around “the club” and “the real world”, Randy only wants the stage persona (witness his anguish when his nametag at his other job uses his given name Robin in the place of Randy). As he ages and weakens, it’s killing Randy that he can’t hold on to the only part of his life that seems good to him. He makes an honest effort to embrace the mundane life, but that leads to the mixing of Pam’s two worlds. How the two of them deal with their alternate personalities and their real-world burdens make the movie interesting. Initially however, it was easy to get distracted by the brutality of both their careers, and I think that may be why it took me some time to let this movie grow on me.
**We’ve got some baseball stuff coming up this week, so make sure you check back in for that.**