The Home Run Derby is still flawed but it got much more interesting

So we just completed the new Home Run Derby and it was very entertaining. It was actually really interesting to see players hit homers against a clock. That drive to the end to get that one last swing before the time ran out was great. The bracket-style was a nice touch. Overall, this was fun. If the derbies are like this going forward, I can dig it.

However, this new format isn’t perfect. There are still some flaws to it.

One flaw that stood out to me the entire evening was the rule that even though it is a timed event, the pitcher cannot make the next pitch until the ball from the previous swing lands. That is a disadvantage on hitters who hit majestic moon shots. Also it adds way more pressure on the pitcher to pitch the ball immediately after the ball lands. Why did Todd Frazier win? His brother Charlie, who was his pitcher, was able to maximize the amount of pitches in the time allotment. It’s unfair but as part of the rules, the Fraziers executed it wonderfully.

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The MLB All-Star Game pillbox caps are the most predictable thing


Apparently they are just concepts. So whoever created this did it pretty well to the point where all media picked up on it and said it was real. So the rest of this entry really is nothing.


If you missed it, images of the All-Star Game caps are out. Predictable.

It’s pillbox, which matches that of Mr. Redlegs. Since the Reds are hosting the midsummer classic and they don’t have any distinct cap design from their era, taking something from their mascot made sense. It was so predictable. They had no other choice. (Hey, pillbox caps are supposed to be flat on top.)

This trend started last year when the Twins were hosting and the All-Star Game caps (a first in MLB) was created to imitate that cap design from the Twins’ past.

It looks like the National League will all have white crowns and the American League will all have their team colors. In theory, this is a great idea. But I still don’t dig it. It seems forced and are All-Star Game caps necessary? Nope. It may look decent for some caps but overall, it isn’t that great. Anything for merchandising purposes, I guess.

I wonder what they’re doing with San Diego next year. Taco Bell caps?

Was the NBA All-Star game court designed solely for the floor projection?

I know the recent trend in the NBA is to have the designs on the court be very bare. Even last year’s All-Star game was pretty colorless. The key was not colored and the only thing that had any color was the midcourt logo.

Take a look at the above video. The floor projection video works well because the floor, once again, was just hardwood. The keys weren’t painted and aside from the midcourt logo, all other designs were wood-colored (just in different tones). Even during the video, the logo at midcourt was covered by a white sheet.

Even though the colorless floors are trendy, did the designers of this floor design it knowing full well that the best way for the video projection was less color?

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Two thoughts from last night’s All-Star festivities

After watching last night’s NBA All-Star weekend festivities, there were two thoughts that came to my mind. My first thought was the three-point contest. The star power and the hype was met in my opinion. We got to see a great first round and a great battle between teammates Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. Former champion Kyrie Irving also put on a great show and the three made it to the final round.

What you see above is Curry’s final round. He made an impressive 13 shots in a row to help seal his victory. We have lauded Curry as the best shooter in the NBA and it seemed for a while that it was in-game only. But now he has finally won this contest and we are so blessed to have seen such a great talent win the contest that seemingly was designed for him.

We have a lot of great shooters in the league. This contest was a great platform to show off their skills.

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The NBA three-point contest may be one of the best ever

Look at this lineup. The defending champion is back in it. Kyle Korver. Stephen Curry. Klay Thompson. Wesley Matthews. James Harden. J.J. Redick. Kyrie Irving.

This is a very impressive lineup. These are all great shooters and I think there is a chance we could see some records broken. Most years this contest is second to the dunk contest. It still doesn’t have the flair as the dunk contest, but this is one of basketball’s best showcases. I’m excited!

My thoughts on the NBA All-Star Game uniforms by Adidas

Check out the link for all the details on the new NBA All-Star Game uniforms. It is a shocker as it is quite simple, sleeve-free and features some unique designs that you may not notice.

It seems to me that with the simplicity of the Nets’ design and the history of basketball in New York, a design without a lot of glitz and glamour and all that jazz made sense. After all, New York is very big on their fashion and the last thing you want to do is represent The Big Apple with a poorly designed look.

With that said, I want to break down the warmups and the actual uniforms themselves.

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New dunk contest rules might just work out

Harrison Barnes will represent the West.

There are new rules to the dunk contest this year in an attempt to spice it up with an East vs West approach. Here are the rules via USA Today:

For the first time, the dunk contest participants will be split into two teams: East (Terrence Ross, Paul George and John Wall) and West (Harrison Barnes, Damian Lillard and Ben McLemore). Rather than all of the dunkers competing against each other as individuals, they will be working in teams, with team and individual awards being given out at the end of the night.

The first round will be a so-called “freestyle” competition, where the dunkers on each team will have 90 seconds to pack in as many dunks as they can. It’s essentially a layup line, not too different from players’ pregame shootaround routines. The judges select a winning team, and that team chooses whether to go first or second in the next round.

The battle round is another clever twist. The three dunkers on each team will be paired off for a series of head-to-head battles, with the judges selecting a winner from each. When a dunker loses a battle, he’s eliminated from the competition, and the remaining contestants continue to go head-to-head until one of the teams wins three battles. That team will be the Slam Dunk Champions for the night.

So it’s a team game now instead of an individual game, even though there are individual elements. Will this work? I hope so. The dunk contest wasn’t bad because of the old rules. It was bad because there was lack of creativity and the time allotment was too long.