Episode 68: I Call All-Time Guttenberg

Podcaster-at-large Michael Rand and our nemesis Rocket join us to discuss:

  • RIP Byron Buxton? (We weren’t sure)
  • Whether or not Flip is still a disaster
  • Vikings predictions + a round of “Bros & Turds”
  • Our weekly Pre-Rage(TM) about Teddy
  • What we’d do if we were the Twins GM
  • AT LEAST one million mom jokes

Decently sports-ish and EASILY our least mature, which is really saying something considering the low bar.

Episode 67: Come On, Ebola!

A quick catch-up sesh ended up lasting 40 minutes, so you sports nutz might want to skip ahead to the good stuff. And by good stuff we mean whining about the Pohlads, refusing to give Flip credit for what could be a pretty exciting Wolves trade, and Clarence launching into yet another tirade against Spielman.

Also, Stu at one point dejectedly muttered “We were put on this earth to suffer” which sums up life as a Minnesota sports fan better than these 67 episodes combined. That said, this one was full of laffs and included a surprising lack of technical glitches. Go get it.

Episode 66: The Raisin Culprit

Brandon, Stu and Clarence power through audio issues and a lack of an agenda to discuss:

  • Jon’s wedding
  • Organization w/ the worst future: NFL or MLB?
  • Vikings season preview teaser: 0-16
  • Twins: should we push our chips to 2017
  • Whether or not to trade our friend Glen Perkins
  • Will Leitch’s tortured fan bases series
  • Clarence’s *perfect* Tony Danza impression

Somehow that took over an hour. Enjoy?

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Episode 65: The Guy From Smooth Cooter is a Cop

Topics:

  • Sam Fuld the Peanut
  • World Cup recap + way too much soccer talk
  • Griping over Flip Saunders and Minnesota owners yet again
  • LeBron James *cricket sounds*
  • The Wild signing of Todd Vanek
  • Weekly bulletin of outstate Minnesota happenings

We also put a request in for St. Paul-to-St. Cloud warp whistles and sponsorship dollars to fund a jail sentence by Jon. And then a bit of cooter talk.

Episode 64: Comparing Apples to Ron Gardenhire

Despite the title, we didn’t actually talk about the Twins in this one. Instead, Brandon got Jon to go on a 75-minute monologue about the World Cup. Included therein was the following:

  • The USA vs. Germany
  • An update on the World Cup in general
  • An anti-Klinsmann cross-examination from Clarence
  • Jon talking at great length about the unknowability of life or something like that
  • Processes vs. results
  • Jonathan Lipnicki, I mean Landon Donovan
  • The NBA Draft and who the Wolves will take
  • Brandon’s dualing ideas about what NBA team he really likes
  • “Wait… WE’RE a dumb organization!”
  • Oscar-nominated boobs
  • Stu’s first three days at MPR

The entire gang was back for this one. It was good to have everybody there.

Episode 63: Neil Diamond’s Tasseled Leather Jacket

We planned to devote this episode to World Cup talk, but our footie pundit Jon ditched us last-minute because apparently he’s “getting married soon” and “very busy” and we shouldn’t have found his future in-laws’ phone number and “repeatedly called to inform them what a good-for-nothing louse” he is. Whatever, Jon.

But we pushed through without him to talk Klinsmann, a half-hearted Wolves draft preview, tailgating, the potential Saints/Twins partnership and, as always, our thoughts on couples showers.

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Episode 62: It’s Funny Because He’s Behind Developmentally

The Sports Fist hits on all the hot button issues of the day because that’s what the Sports Fist was born to do. Namely:

  • Congratulating Stu on his new job
  • An extended World Cup preview
  • Much yelling over Klinsmann
  • Kendrys Morales and the 30-swings-and-misses analogy
  • Mauer and the head ouchies
  • Kevin Love has lost his damn mind

We also sing the Jeffersons theme song a couple times if you’re into that sort of thing.

(Link to mp3 here if player below doesn’t work.)

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Brandon’s Timberwolves Offseason Gameplan

As The Official Pretend Sportive GM of the Minnesota Timberwolves, it should come as no surprise that the masses (no one) have been clamoring for my vaunted annual offseason game plan. I have detailed my strategy below.

(Remember that last year I would have drafted CJ McCollum and Mike Muscala, then signed AK47 and Al-Farouq Aminu. I would have then traded Derrick Williams for Utah’s Jeremy Evans. My Pretend Wolves would not have included Shabazz, Dieng, Martin or Brewer. Dieng looks like a solid pick-up but overall my team would have been better while maintaining a TON more payroll flexibility. And remember, I’m a moron. You suck, Flip Saunders.)

As it stands, here is my POV on what the roster needs to look like to be a competitive, playoff-bound team.

PG: Rubio / [?] / Barea / Shved

SG: [?] / Martin / Brewer

SF:  [?] / Budinger / Shabazz / Mbah a Moute

PF: Love / [?]

C: Pek / Dieng / Turiaf

So there you. To simplify, the Wolves have four big needs: Backup PG, Starting SG, Starting SF and Backup PF. Those four positions are all anyone should care about this offseason. Considering the fact that the Wolves are nudging up against the salary cap (you suck, Flip Saunders,) they have very little wiggle room to fill them all. It’d take a near-miracle to go 4-4, but filling most of the needs and balancing the roster is not out of the question.

The Wolves have a superstar and two very good starters, plus a bench of solid centers and wings. With a little roster balance (THIS IS WHY IT’D BE NICE TO HAVE A COMPETENT GM) as well as a solid understanding of what bench guys play best with each other (THIS IS WHY IT’D BE NICE TO HAVE AN ANALYTICAL COACH), I don’t think you have to squint too hard to see a much improved version of the Wolves next season.

***

What I would do:

STEP 1: The Draft. Target wings. I have not watched any workouts but I watched a ton of college hoops and my wish list is: Gary Harris, Nik Stauskas, James Young and Kyle Anderson. Get one of those in the first. In the second round, target potential backup PGs and PFs. Russ Smith, Jahii Carson and Khem Birch are my targets.

STEP 2: Trade(s). Call every GM in the league and offer Barea, Martin, Brewer, Shabazz and/or Mbah a Moute in exchange for a competent backup PG or PF. None of those guys has a ton of value, but we are not asking for the moon. We’re shooting to trade competence for competence to help another team balance their roster. Not looking for projects but solid, developed pros. I’m talking about Dante Cunningham-types (ideally who don’t lob death threats while on the way home from jail).

STEP 3: Free agency. Plug the holes you weren’t able to fill with low-cost but decent production guys. Obviously would need to reassess after the draft/trades but for now my target list is: Shaun Livingston, Ramon Sessions, Jodie Meeks, Jordan Hill, Anthony Tolliver and DeJuan Blair.

And that’s IT. That’s the entire plan. Not a franchise-changing offseason, since big moves are impossible considering the current state of the roster (you su—ah forget it), so the only goal is to get slightly better and show our waffling savior Kevin Love that he should stay while also staying flexible for the future if and when he bolts.

***

My dream scenario (while also realistic) is something like this:

STEP 1 RESULT: Drafted Gary Harris, Russ Smith and grabbed a couple Euro-stash PFs.

STEP 2 RESULT: Signed DeJuan Blair (1 yr/$2M) and Anthony Tolliver (1 yr/$2M).

STEP 3 RESULT: Traded Barea and Mbah a Moute for some shooting sleeves and a couple buckets of practice balls.

2014 Roster:

PG: Rubio / Smith / Shved

SG: Harris / Martin

SF:  Budinger / Brewer / Shabazz

PF: Love / Blair / Tolliver

C: Pek / Dieng / Turiaf

Harris starting over Martin, you ask? It’s worth a shot and easy to flip flop if Harris is a disaster. But Martin is more effective with the ball and may do better split up from Rubio. Harris will not be asked to do a whole lot beyond defense, spotting up and learning the offense.

Bud moves into a starting role as a decent two-way player who can be a low-usage flloor-spacer while Ricky and Love do their thing. If he too is a disaster, it’s a simple swap with Brewer. Worst case scenario is rolling with a starting five that was playoff-worthy last season.

As for the bench, the second unit may have trouble scoring points unless Smith is a better creator than expected, but defense should be solid and hold its own while the starters rest. And just to be clear, Martin, Dieng and Blair are all plus offensive weapons. Should be much improved.

I’d also be more than happy to chuck Shved in the river in favor of a traditional PG with decent-enough handles if one can be found on the cheap.

Final point, if they can get anything of value in any bench trades, the roster could and should look a lot better. But I can’t know that so I’m just doing what I can. Still think this is a very solid roster with a not-totally-disastrous future if our Golden Boy up and leaves.

Now let’s all hope Old Man Anna Nicole Smith (aka Flip) can do better than this pedestrian/very doable plan. You’ll be shocked, but I have my doubts.

Episode 61: Diaper Play at Stu’s House

A little bit of Twins talk and a whole lot of Wolves bitching. Other mentions: Tracy Chapman, molotov cocktails, Minnesota insecurity, the poet laureate 50 Cent and drunken wives.

Episode 60: Dry-humping Peanuts Characters

Jon, Clarence and Brandon discuss:

  • Parents getting turnt on work trips
  • The case for keeping Kevin Love
  • The case for firing Flip
  • Teddy B and the art of pre-raging
  • Update on Twins’ 2016 outlook
  • How we can get Rick Spielman fired (hint: check the ep title)
  • World Cup

#HireStu