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The NBA is BACK!

Posted on October 22, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Sure, we may be in the middle of the NFL season, but the NBA is officially back in action tonight! The double-header for opening night features the Toronto Raptors vs. New Orleans Pelicans and LA Clippers vs. Los Angeles Lakers. We can only hope that these games turn out better than the season opener for the NFL, which shouldn’t be hard to do.

So what can fans expect this season? Maybe the question should be ‘who can the fans expect to show up this season.’ Well, not the Number One draft pick of the 2019 NBA Draft, for starters. Yesterday the New Orleans Pelicans announced that Zion Williamson will be out for a couple months after having surgery to repair a torn right lateral meniscus. And per the ESPN Breaking News alert we all got on our phones this morning, the Golden State Warriors aren’t expecting to see Klay Thompson on the court at all this season as he recovers from a torn ACL. On top of that, Russell Westbrook keeps managing to hurt his shooting hand. Pull it together, guys.

Who should they put their money on? Well, Seerat Sohi, Chris Haynes, Vincent Goodwill and Ben Rohrbach all picked the Los Angeles Clippers to take home the championship. Rohrbach was the only one to pick the Philadelphia 76ers as the other team in the NBA Finals – the rest selected the Milwaukee Bucks. While these four from Yahoo Sports are literally paid for their opinion, we still have a hard time believing the Clippers will end the season on a high note. Of course, the opinions we care most about come from the fans. Let us know in the comments who you think will make it to the 2020 NBA Finals!

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Time To Pony Up, Shaq

Posted on July 16, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

When will people learn that the internet is forever? Clearly not soon enough, and nobody knows that better than Shaquille O’Neal. This morning Golden State Warriors Head Coach Steve Kerr tweeted an unearthed clip of Shaq making some strong statements in regards to his coach at the time, Phil Jackson. He quite literally said he would kiss the feet of any other coach that made four NBA Finals appearances within five years. For those of you that haven’t been counting, Kerr reached that milestone this year after previously making appearances in 2015, 2017, and 2018 as well. But don’t worry, Shaq knows his number is up. He responded to Kerr, letting him know that he’s game.

We love it when athletes make outlandish statements, only to have to back them up after being called out on social media. While we don’t necessarily want to watch Shaq kiss Kerr’s feat, we’re glad someone dug that clip up for the world to enjoy. We’d ask the fans if they want to see some interesting bets go on between our athletes and Team Owners | Fan Captains, but we already know the answer is a resounding yes. But we are curious to hear from the fans what kind of bets they want to see! Should Bobby Bones and Kinda Funny’s Greg Miller make an arrangement for the loser to go on the other’s show and publicly call themselves the biggest loser of the FCFL? What about Marshawn Lynch having to take Richard Sherman or Prince Royce to a VERY expensive dinner at the nicest restaurant in Las Vegas? We’re all ears for your suggestions!

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Leaving Well Enough Alone

Posted on June 11, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Talk about not listening to your body. Last night in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, Warriors forward Kevin Durant made his triumphant return to the court after a nasty calf strain he sustained in the Western Conference Semifinals against the Houston Rockets. Well, maybe triumphant isn’t the right word to use here, considering he proceeded to likely tear his Achilles tendon in the second quarter. He’s expected to undergo an MRI later today to confirm the injury, and we can’t help but hope for the best. That is NOT a feeling we want to experience. If you look closely in the clip below, you can see his tendon ‘bounce’ in a way that will send shivers down your spine.

We mentioned on Twitter that our Chief Product Officer, Grant Cohen, was likely celebrating in the office when he heard the news. Did we jinx it? Maybe. Do we feel responsible? No. Durant probably should have given himself a little more time to heal. We get that the Warriors’ medical team cleared him to play, but we get the feeling that Durant’s ego might have played a role in the decision. When it comes to players in the FCFL potentially missing a make-or-break playoff game, we think the fans would hope the players err on the side of caution. We don’t think the fans would say that one game is worth a serious injury that could affect their playing abilities forever. But of course, we’re all ears if any of you fans out there think differently!

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We are READY for the 2019 Women’s World Cup

Posted on June 10, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Sure, Kevin Durant was just declared fit for Game 5 of the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Toronto Raptors, and the Boston Bruins have forced a Game 7 against the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cup Finals, but the World Cup is here! You know, that major soccer event that comes around every four years, ever heard of it? The 2019 Women’s World Cup may have kicked off last week, but we are gearing up for the United States’ first match up tomorrow against Thailand at 12pm PT/3pm ET! You can watch their game, and all the World Cup action on Fox and FS1 in English, or Telemundo and Universo in Spanish. You can also catch them on June 16 against Chile at 9am PT/12pm ET and wrapping up group-play on June 20 versus Sweden at 12pm PT/3pm ET. For the full 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup schedule, click here.

The U.S. Women’s National Team is defending their title from 2015 where they defeated Japan in the finals, but their team looks a little different now four years later. With a blend of veterans like Carli Lloyd, Julie Ertz and Alex Morgan, and newer faces like Alyssa Naeher, Rose Lavelle and Jessica McDonald, we’re certainly feeling optimistic for their chances at being back-to-back World Cup Champions! We know soccer isn’t everyone’s favorite sport, but there’s nothing that unites the fans together quite like cheering “U-S-A” in head-to-toe red, white and blue! So fans, let’s rally and get your USA chants going! We may not have home teams to root for in the FCFL, but we certainly do for the World Cup!

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Please, Step Away From Kyle Lowry

Posted on June 6, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Sorry guys, we have more NBA Finals news for you. Last night in Game 3 between the Golden State Warriors and the Toronto Raptors, things got a little rough. Kyle Lowry fell into the fans sitting courtside while chasing down the ball, and was shoved by someone sitting in the front row… and by someone, we mean part-owner of the Warriors, Mark Stevens. Not only was Lowry fired up about the incident, but the NBA has decided to take action.

In a statement released by the NBA, they said: “A team representative must be held in the highest possible standard and the conduct of Golden State Warriors investor Mark Stevens last night was beyond unacceptable and has no place in our league. As the review of this matter continues, Mr. Stevens will not be permitted to attend NBA games.”

We think the fans will agree here, that what Mr. Stevens did was not okay. We’ll leave it to you to debate whether or not his actions deserved a ban on all NBA games. We’re going to go ahead and let this serve as a gentle reminder to the fans – our players are friends, not foes. When you have the opportunity to meet them, we advise against pushing them out of your way. We strongly encourage high-fives though!

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Tornados Are No Match For Blues Fans

Posted on May 24, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

We’re taking a quick break from everything going down in the NBA Finals (we 👀 you stirring stuff up, Drake) to cover what’s happening in the Stanley Cup Finals. On Tuesday night, fans in the St. Louis area had more to worry about than seeing the Blues make it to their first Stanley Cup Final since 1970 – they were dealing with tornado sirens blaring, warning them to hunker down and prepare for the worst. But the Blues fans weren’t going to let a little natural disaster stop them from catching Game 6 of the Western Conference finals, with plenty taking to Twitter to share what they and their loved ones did in order find a place to watch the game.

We don’t think we need to state this, but absolutely want to put it out there: our fans are the BEST in sports. But that being said, the Blues fans are trying to give you a run for your money. Ignoring tornado warnings is a pretty big deal, but that doesn’t match the way you are all dedicating to building your teams from the ground up! And of course, we don’t want you to miss a single game… but we also don’t want you driving through any natural disasters in order to call plays on game day either. Stay safe out there, fans!

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Golden State Makes It To 5th Straight NBA Finals

Posted on May 21, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Remember how we said Boston ‘must be stopped’ last week? Well, while highlighting the championships that city has been earning over the past 12 months, we may have glossed over our concern that the Golden State Warriors need to be knocked down a peg as well (This is the part where our Chief Product Officer, Grant Cohen, immediately stops reading and demands that this blog be taken down).

Last night, Steph Curry and the Warriors punched their ticket to their FIFTH-straight NBA Finals. And if you can believe it, the Warriors are the first team to do that since the Boston Celtics (1957-66) – apparently we can’t get a sentence in without mentioning one of those pesky Boston teams, even from a historical perspective! Just the way we are rooting for the San Jose Sharks/St. Louis Blues over the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Finals, we will be rooting for either Drake and the Toronto Raptors or the Milwaukee Bucks over the Warriors in the NBA Finals.

But first, let’s take a moment to focus on what happened in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. We watched Steph Curry completely dominate over his brother Seth on the court (Can you imagine how awkward that next family get together will be? Yikes.). Even without Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins, the Warriors managed to sweep the Trailblazers out of contention by the end of overtime, by TWO POINTS. Just let that sink in for a moment. This comes after the Warriors trailed by 17+ points in three of the four games. Watching the Trailblazers let their berth to the NBA Finals slip out of their hands looked a little something like this:

via GIPHY

We’ve talked about tough losses( before, but this one actually made us hurt for the Trailblazers and their fans. Not only is there the sibling rivalry aspect, but this series really should have gone to Portland, or at the very least gone on for another few games. If you’ve got 1) a significant lead in three of four games and 2) two major players missing from the other team, and still can’t take down the Warriors, you’ve got problems. If our fans were running Portland’s front office, we’d expect that they might smash a few things in anger, at least initially. But after blowing off some steam, we think they would go back through footage from not just the playoffs, but the entire season to pinpoint what changes they need and can implement to better prepare for next season. That, and we think they will start (if they haven’t already) really diving deep into the 2019 NBA Draft Class, identifying the best person to take with their #25 pick in the first round.

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The 2019 NBA Draft Order Is Here!

Posted on May 15, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

For anyone that missed it, last night was the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery. Although the draft itself won’t be held until next month, June 20th to be exact, the fans now have a little over a month to explore every possibility of what their teams will do in the first round. With a ton of talent heading into the draft this year, including Zion Williamson, a lot of fans are hoping to see their teams turn it around next season. And with that, the order for the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft is as follows:

  1. New Orleans Pelicans
  2. Memphis Grizzlies
  3. New York Knicks
  4. Los Angeles Lakers
  5. Cleveland Cavaliers
  6. Phoenix Suns
  7. Chicago Bulls
  8. Atlanta Hawks
  9. Washington Wizards
  10. Atlanta Hawks (they get a second pick through a previous trade with Dallas)
  11. Minnesota Timberwolves
  12. Charlotte Hornets
  13. Miami Heat
  14. Boston Celtics (through a trade with Sacramento)
  15. Detroit Pistons
  16. Orlando Magic
  17. Brooklyn Nets
  18. Indiana Pacers
  19. San Antonio Spurs
  20. Boston Celtics (through a trade with the LA Clippers)
  21. Oklahoma City Thunder
  22. Boston Celtics (okay now they’re just getting greedy)
  23. Utah Jazz
  24. Philadelphia 76ers
  25. Portland Trailblazers
  26. Cleveland Cavaliers (through a trade with Houston)
  27. Brooklyn Nets (through a trade with Denver)
  28. Golden State Warriors
  29. San Antonio Spurs (through a trade with Toronto)
  30. Milwaukee Bucks

For anyone that’s predominantly a football fan, the NBA Draft doesn’t take playoff results into consideration when determining draft order. Meaning, if you’re fans of the Knicks, Cavs, or Suns, you not only have an abysmal record, but you also don’t have the draft placement you really need. Not to be immature, but it sucks to suck. While we have not determined how the draft order will be selected in the FCFL, we’re curious to know what the fans want to see. We think fans will want to see a lottery-style for the first season. But for every season after that? We think there’s going to be a split consensus. We think some of the fans will want to keep the lottery style moving forward, while others will want something more similar to what we see in the NFL. That’s our best guess for now, but if you feel strongly one way or the other fans, let us know!

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Maybe Kawhi IS better than Kobe?

Posted on May 13, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Before you get all up in arms, we’re not saying that Kawhi Leonard is definitely better than Kobe, merely that we’re open to revisiting Max Kellerman’s remarks from last week[link] after his performance last night. In the Toronto Raptors’ match-up with the Philadelphia 76ers, Leonard made the first Game 7 buzzer-beater in NBA in history as his fadeaway jumper gave Toronto a 92-90 win. With the game tied 90-90 and 4.2 seconds left on the clock, we imagine fans for both teams were holding their breath as the ball inbounded to Leonard who was being guarded by Ben Simmons. It was truly an amazing moment to witness for anyone that is not a 76ers fan. We’re sure that soon enough, even 76ers fans will admit that it was an awesome shot.

We love when games are won on a last-minute score – and no, field goals do not count. So much so that we have completely removed kicking from the FCFL. Letting a game’s result hinge on a ball being kicked through the uprights is boring. Letting a game’s result depend on an actual touchdown? Now that’s something we can get behind. We want to hear from you fans, but we have a feeling you’ll agree with us on this one. We need more games that end on such an exciting note – bring on the buzzer-beaters!

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It’s Not Over ‘Til It’s Over

Posted on April 16, 2019

By Annalece Anhalt-Slaughter

Time and time again, teams get ahead of themselves and think they are the greatest… before their game is over. We saw that at Super Bowl LI when the Atlanta Falcons blew a 25-point lead in the third quarter over the New England Patriots. During the 2016 NBA Finals, the Golden State Warriors blew a 3-1 game lead against the Cleveland Cavaliers, resulting in the Larry O’Brien trophy being presented to the Cavs AT Oracle Arena. Ouch.

And last night, the Warriors did it again. They blew a 31-point lead against the Los Angeles Clippers, ultimately losing 135-131. Not only that, but this game had been officially named the greatest comeback in NBA playoff history, dethroning the Los Angeles Lakers win over the Seattle Supersonics in 1989 (a 29-point comeback).

To add insult to injury, the media is not holding back on getting in on some of the shade being thrown at Steph Curry and company. Sports Illustrated even posted a list of the 13 things to know about the Warriors blowing their lead to stay on theme. Cue the onslaught of memes and savage tweets about the Warriors not doing well when there is a lead involving the numbers 3 and 1.

Just a little word of wisdom to our fans – the game isn’t over until it’s over. No matter how much of a lead you may have, anything is possible. Just make sure you’re calling plays with confidence and use your players to the best of their ability. And for those of you in our Virtual Front Office that may have a more direct line to players and coaching staff, be sure to pass that message along. Not a member of the VFO yet? Sign up here!