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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Must See Sports - First Weekend of November 2013

Last week's advantage/disadvantage record, excluding series: 8-4 
Last week's advantage/disadvantage record in series: 1-0
2013 Advantage/Disadvantage Record, excluding series: 75-60
2013 Advantage/Disadvantage FINAL Record (series only): 22-13-4

Thursday, October 31


New York Knicks at Chicago Bulls

The Knicks will get a tougher challenge than in their opening night contest with the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bulls are at home and not at the ring ceremony of the defending champs. Should be a low scoring contest and I will take Derrick Rose over Carmelo Anthony.

Advantage: Bulls

Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Clippers

The Warriors left little pieces of the Lakers all over the floor, ringing up 125 points, including 38 from shooting guard Klay Thompson. These were the same Kobe-less Lakers that the Clipper could not stop on Tuesday night.

Advantage: Warriors

The Warriors already have Steph Curry, who can drop 40 at will. For the sake of everyone else in the West, they should hope that Thompson's 38 points against the Lakers were an anomaly. 6

Friday, November 1


Miami Heat at Brooklyn Nets

It could take some time for Kevin Garnett (8 PPG, 10 RPG) and Paul Pierce (17 PPG) to assimilate into their new surroundings in Brooklyn. Miami is likely waking up after coughing up 114 points in a loss at Philadelphia. The Heat were up for the Bulls and I expect them to be up for the Nets.

Advantage: Heat

I'm sure The Big Ticket can't wait to get reacquainted with Ray Allen (above) tomorrow. 5

Saturday, November 2

NCAA Football

#7 Mimai Hurricanes at #3 Florida State Seminoles

Game of the week! Florida State QB and Heisman candidate Jameis Winston (2,177 yds., 23 TD, 4 INT) will be on display again in his toughest test of the season. The Hurricanes have a chance to prove that they are a serious ACC contender and not simply the beneficiaries of good fortune and a good schedule.

Winston's favorite target, wide receiver Rashad Greene (39 rec., 690 yds., 8 TD) is going to pose a problem for the Canes. Miami has been susceptible against the pass against teams with legitimate deep threats. At the same time, Miami running back Duke Johnson (823 yds., 6 TD, 6.7 avg.) has been a one man wrecking crew who can deliver in clutch situations.

This game is being played in Tallahassee. FSU's defense has been just as overpowering as its offense while Miami has been in some close games against unremarkable opponents. FSU doesn't lose many battles in the trenches and can force multiple turnovers every week. The Canes only have one win against a ranked opponent this season. The Seminoles are battle tested after consecutive games, lopsided wins, against Maryland and at then-#3 Clemson.

Advantage: Florida State

"The U" hasn't faced the likes of Jameis Winston yet. 4

#18 Oklahoma State Cowboys at #15 Texas Tech Red Raiders

Texas Tech was handed a slice of humble pie in their first loss of the season at Oklahoma last week. Oklahoma State also has a loss. The loser is all but finished in the Big XII race.

Oklahoma State has some hurdles to clear. In spite of a spectacular 219 rushing yards performance by Desmond Roland (366 yds., 6 TD, 5.9 avg.) last week against Iowa, it remains to be seen that he isn't a flavor of the week. OSU has had quarterback issues last year. Cowboys QB J.W. Walsh (1,324 yds., 9 TD, 5 INT, 60% comp.) was benched last week for Clint Chelf (549 yds., 4 TD, 2 INT) who couldn't crack 100 yards passing. OSU head coach Mike Gundy said that he is sticking with Chelf.

Texas Tech's approach of pass first, pass second, pass third and when in doubt - pass, will probably be more effective against the Cowboys that it was against the more physical Sooners. Red Raiders QB Davis Webb (1,812 yds., 13 TD, 7 INT) passed for 385 yards, including two touchdowns, in spite of the loss to Oklahoma. The Cowboys' secondary will face its first high-powered challenge of the season.

The venue and the Cowboys' problems under center tip the scales slightly toward the Red Raiders.

Advantage: Texas Tech

Sunday, November 3


New Orleans Saints (6-1) at New York Jets (4-4)

The pickings are slim among the Sunday. The Saints and Jets are the most appealing item on the menu. The Saints rebounded following a loss in the final seconds to the New England Patriots and a bye week by clobbering the Buffalo Bills, 35-17. Saints quarterback Drew Brees (2,290 yds., 19 TD, 5 INT, 68%) threw five touchdown passes last week. The Jets had their manhood taken away in Cincinnati, losing by 40 points to the Bengals.

The Jets are still searching for an offensive identity halfway through the regular season. Still the Jets are at home and have a potent one-two punch in the backfield in Bilal Powell and Chris Ivory while the Saints can be a little porous against the run. If the Saints can force turnovers and score points early, it may neutralize the threat of the Jets' running attack. The longer the score remains close, the better chance the Jets have of pulling off the upset. I don't expect that to happen, but expect the tone for the game to be set in the first quarter.

Advantage: Saints

Graham (foot injury) returned to the lineup last week in "limited" action to catch two touchdown passes. Limited?

Monday, November 3


Chicago Bears (4-3) at Green Bay Packers (5-2)

The NFL's longest standing rivalry continues on Monday Night Football. In spite of a very good record, the Packers have their share of problems - teams have been able to pass the ball on them. They've been oppressive offensively however and appeared to have permanently found a solution to their rushing game with rookie running back Eddie Lacy (446 yds., 3 TD, 4.0 avg.).

The Bears are in need of a complete rebuild on defense. While the Packers will need to constantly account for Bears RB Matt Forte (553 yds., 6 TD, 3.9 avg.), who can bust a long run at any time, the Bears have no shot against the Pack at Lambeau Field without injured QB Jay Cutler (1,658 yds., 12 TD, 7 INT, 65% comp.) in the lineup. Cutler is still out with a groin injury.

If Cutler's wife, Kristin Cavallari (left) is a real keeper, she will invite The Hills co-star Audrina Patridge (right) over and help Jay rehab that groin injury to speed up his recovery. Though if she did, Cutler may have a relapse on a weekly basis. 2
Advantage: Packers

Wednesday, November 5

Chicago Bulls at Indiana Pacers

Indiana is at home and appears just a fierce defensively as last year. It appears that they are successfully working guard Lance Stephenson (18 PPG, 5 APG, 8 RPG) into the offense more. Derrick Rose will be in the building and the Pacers will be waiting.

Advantage: Pacers

Rose is back and it's on in the Eastern Conference! 1

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