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Trade You for a Catfish – the Most Bizarre Deals in Sporting History 0

Posted on December 12, 2017 by Rik Snuiverink
Ken Krahenbuhl was part of one of the most unusual trades in baseball history.

Ken Krahenbuhl was part of one of the most unusual trades in baseball history.

Ah, the sporting trade – it conjures images of wholesome children in the sun-kissed days of yesteryear trading their baseball cards, or high school teams negotiating over the star soccer players, piles of sweaters at the ready as makeshift goalposts. Of course, in the world of professional sports, trading players is deadly serious, involving multi million dollar transactions.

At least, you might reasonably think so, but there have been some truly surreal sporting trades over the years.

Fighting over the best and betting on the outcomes

Whether it is draft picks in the NFL or European soccer stars in the transfer window, professional sports team love to negotiate with each other. Sometimes those negotiations can get intense – perhaps this is why, with the rise in online betting, the topic of who will complete what deal is becoming as popular a wager as the games themselves. The UK casino sites at TheCasinoDB.com are no strangers to sports betting, and if you take a look when January comes around and the transfer window opens, they will all be discussing the odds of potential trades.

Usually the who and the where are the focus of the average sporting trade, but sometimes it is the “for what,” as the following examples demonstrate.

The Pitcher and the Catfish

Poor Ken Krahenbuhl. First, the Pacific Suns traded him to the Greenville Bluesmen without even having the good grace to tell him about it, but regardless, he went out and pitched a perfect game in his very first outing for his new team. Yet despite his achievements against the odds, he has gone down in history as the man who was traded in exchange for 10lb of catfish.

Bussey Martin

Tom Martin was a journeyman NHL winger who served time with the Winnipeg Jets, the Hartford Whalers and the Minnesota North Stars in a seven-year career that was solid but unremarkable. However, before turning pro, he had the singular experience of being traded by the Seattle Breakers to the Victoria Cougars in exchange for a new team bus. As you might guess, there is more to the story than meets the eye, but the nickname Bussey lived with him for his entire career. Read the rest of this entry →

Step Aside, Cleveland, These Teams are the Biggest Losers in History 0

Posted on December 09, 2017 by Rik Snuiverink
Steve Spurrier was the original starting quarterback when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers began their stretch of 26 consecutive defeats.

Steve Spurrier was the original starting quarterback when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers began their stretch of 26 consecutive defeats.

For the 0-12 Browns, it is all something of a case of deja-vu. This time last year, they were in exactly the same position, and it was only a Christmas Eve win that saved them from a 0-16 season. That makes 28 losses in the last 29 regular season games for the Browns. It’s bad, but that single win against the Chargers last year means Cleveland can’t even make a success of losing, and just miss out on the top losing streaks shortlist.

Streaking to failure – or gambling on spectacular success

There is something almost magical about the streak. Sportsbook fans and casino goers know that it can make gamblers overnight millionaires or bring them to ruin, whether they are putting it all on black 22 at casino-websites.co.uk or trying to hold their nerve in a complex sports betting accumulator.

For sports fans, however, when all else is lost, there is what becomes an almost morbid interest in just how bad your team can become. It is a feeling that Cleveland fans know only too well. Here are some of the biggest losing streaks in sporting history.

NFL: 26 games

Not to rub it in, but had Cleveland lost to San Diego last year, they would have shot straight to the top of the list. As it is, the biggest losing streak stands at 26, and is a record held by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Worse, it came in 1976, when the regular season was only 14 games long and the Bucs were the new kids in town. It took the franchise almost two entire seasons to manage its first victory, a 33-14 win over The Saints in the penultimate game of the1977 season at Tampa Stadium. Read the rest of this entry →

Ten Oldest Stadiums in the United States 0

Posted on December 09, 2017 by Jayson Goetz
Franklin Field

Franklin Field

When most Americans relied on candles to see and washed clothes by hand, the first sports stadium was being laid brick by brick. Now there are more than 200 stadiums in the country, and some come with swimming pools and zip lines. Those interested in original sports stadiums should check out the 10 oldest stadiums still in use today in the United States:

1. Franklin Field

This stadium was built in 1895 for the first running of the track and field competition known as the Penn Relays. It holds the record for many firsts such as the nation’s first scoreboard, the first stadium to have an upper deck of seats and the first to broadcast a football game on the radio and on television. The National Collegiate Athletic Association recognizes Franklin Field as the oldest stadium still operating for football.

2. Harvard Stadium

This stadium was an architectural feat at the time of its construction in 1903. Led by former Civil Engineering professor Louis Johnson, the stadium’s design was the first vertical structure to use reinforced structural concrete. The material was previously only used in horizontal designs such as flooring. Many people were skeptical of the stadium’s design. It was believed that it wouldn’t hold the weight of the crowds or last through the cold New England winters. But the stadium still stands today and it was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1987. Read the rest of this entry →

Improve Your Shoulder Strength on the Baseball Field with These 3 Baseball Workouts 0

Posted on December 08, 2017 by Coraline Huard

baseball-workoutsWithout strong shoulders, it’s tough to excel on the baseball field. Whatever your level now, there’s room for improvement! Use these three baseball workouts to strengthen your shoulders for better fielding, hitting, pitching, and throwing potential.

Understanding the Importance of Shoulder Strength for Baseball

Before we get into the exercises, let’s take a look at the mechanics of baseball. Shoulder strength, as it turns out, is essential for just about every move you make on the field. Flexibility is equally important, so don’t skimp on the stretching. Remember to warm up before every workout and game, too.

Start Every Baseball Workout with Arm and Shoulder Stretches

Before you start to stretch, spend a minute or so jogging. This warms up your entire body and increases your circulation, reducing the likelihood of injury. When you’re warmed up, you’re ready to stretch your arms and shoulders using slow, smooth motions while inhaling and exhaling deeply:

  • Lock your elbows and hold your arms straight out in front of your body. Bring your shoulder blades together as you pull your arms straight back while keeping them elevated.
  • Shrug your shoulders toward your ears, and then drop them back down into their natural position.
  • Do shoulder circles by lifting your arms away from your sides so that your body looks like a big “T.” With your elbows locked and your arms parallel to the floor, make circular motions in a forward direction, beginning with large, loose circles and gradually decreasing the size of the circles. Do this for at least 15 seconds, and then repeat the motion with backwards circles.
  • Look for chest, neck, and back stretches to complement your shoulder stretches. All of these muscles are connected, so it’s important to stretch them all, even when you’re only focusing on shoulder workouts. Read the rest of this entry →

Costly Baseball Thumb Injuries, Then And Now 0

Posted on November 22, 2017 by Joe Fleming
The Los Angeles Angels could not overcome the thumb injury suffered by star Mike Trout during the 2017 season.

The Los Angeles Angels could not overcome the thumb injury suffered by star Mike Trout during the 2017 season.

Considering that the wounds are relatively minor, a blistered or sprained thumb has caused considerable consternation in baseball over the years. In the 2017 season, a sprained thumb might have cost two teams each a playoff berth, and of course, there’s also that famous thumb injury in 1986 which arguably extended the Curse of the Bambino another twenty years.

Medically, a sprained thumb affects the tissue in either the interphalangeal joint (thumb knuckle) or metacarpophalangeal joint (thumb base). In addition to physical activity, arthritis often causes either a hyperextension (when the thumb moves backward) or hyperflexion (repetitive motion). A few simple exercises, and perhaps a thumb brace and a little ice, usually cure the problem. But alas, these measures were insufficient to change the course of history for these three teams:

2017 Los Angeles Angels

The World Series Champion Houston Astros eventually ran away with the American League West title in 2017, but in May, preseason favorite Los Angeles appeared to be in the driver’s seat. Then, in a May 28 loss that brought the team’s record under .500 for one of the first times that season, MVP candidate Mike Trout sprained his thumb. Read the rest of this entry →

Rise Of Analytics Help Trigger New Era In Sports 2

Posted on October 27, 2017 by Kent Tukeli

Advanced analytics have completely changed basketball and baseball strategy at the highest level. After decades of traditional wisdom ruling over the NBA and MLB, coaches and front offices were forced to adjust to new data sources which revealed valuable competitive insight.

Professional hockey went through a major change in the 1990s, with NHL betting odds favoring teams which made the switch to trap-based defensive systems. Since then scoring has almost returned to pre-trap levels as analysts attempt to utilize modern analytics to uncover the next big edge in hockey. And the best sports betting sites have had also had to adjust their betting lines accordingly.

NBA Analytics Created The Three-Point Revolution

Basketball might be the most extreme example of how analytics has influenced a sport’s strategy at the highest level. NBA champions of the 80s and 90s ruled the paint, including legends like Magic Johnson, Hakeem Olajuwon and Shaquille O’Neal. The action has moved far away from the key, with the three-point shot dominating the newest offensive schemes and strategies.

The record for three-point attempts was broken once again in the 2016-17 season, this time by the Houston Rockets, who bombed their way to a second-round playoff exit. The previous record holders, the Golden State Warriors, earned their second NBA championship in three years. No team has won a ring without elite three-point shooting for nearly a decade.

Basketball analytics have progressed to personal electronics worn by players around the clock, with players being monitored almost incessantly. Before the modern age of the three-pointer, a three-point shooting center or power forward was a rare luxury. Now, players who previously focused on banging in the paint must develop a jumper if they expect to start on most NBA rosters.

Curry-KD

MLB Analytics Lead To Home Run And Strikeout Records

Perhaps the most stat-intense sport in the world, baseball has always recorded the history of their game meticulously. The advent of modern analytics and micro data has allowed statisticians to run through an abundance of data to determine the best hitting, pitching and batting strategies. Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Mike Gminski: Four-Year Duke Star
      March 10, 2018 | 11:05 am
      Mike Gminski

      Mike Gminski

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was a star big man who achieved great success at Camden Indoor Stadium in the era before Coach K and the One-and-Done big men became the norm at Duke University.

      Much like recent Duke big men Marvin Bagley III, Jayson Tatum and Jahlil Okafor, Mike Gminski made an immediate impact for the Blue Devils. However, because he played 40 years earlier at a time when few players left college early, Gminski spent four years racking up stats and success in Durham.

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