Sports Blogger Asks: Which is Worse -- Blackhawks or Ex-Girlfriend Porn Star?

Categories: Aaron Schafer

Edit note: Um, yeah.

Ladies and gentlemen, these are dark days we're living in. Dark, awful, apocalyptically dark and awful days. Did I mention the dark part? What about the awful part? I'm pretty sure I did.

The Chicago Blackhawks are Stanley Cup champions. Again.

Okay, deep breaths. Easy, now. We're all going to get through this together, alright? I promise. Just....breathe. Think calming thoughts. Happy thoughts. Like Peter Pan is teaching you to fly, right? Exactly. Happy. Thoughts.

The Blackhawks beat the Boston Bruins, the last and best hope of humanity to prevent the nightmare we are now living. They won the Stanley Cup. Dark days, man. Dark days.

But, hey, there are more disappointing things, right? Of course, there are. Here are five things more disappointing (to me) than the Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup.

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Can Either Mizzou or SLU Get Past Louisville in NCAA Tourney?

Categories: Aaron Schafer

You get into the tourney, and your mascot gets the photo space -- no matter how creepy it is.
As the NCAA Tournament prepares to kick off, we're in a remarkably exciting position this year here in the Gateway City. Our very own Billikens are getting national hype from all corners as a team with the potential to make a deep tournament run, and just a couple hours to the west, the somewhat confounding but oh-so-talented Missouri Tigers are hoping to avenge last year's March Meltdown. (Patent pending.)

So what is a St. Louis basketball fan to do? Which of these two Show-Me State powerhouses should you be following? More importantly, which one should you be betting on to win your office pool and make Larry from accounting cry? (Suck it, Larry from accounting!)

Have no fear, sports fan. The RFT is here to break it down for you.

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The 13 Best Fat Baseball Players of All Time

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Lynn when he was better rounded.
So, here's the thing: Cardinals pitcher Lance Lynn got skinny during the off-season. Like, really skinny.

Well, okay, not like really skinny compared to skinny people, but really skinny compared to Lynn, who, until this year, routinely showed up to spring ball in one of two coatings: Original Recipe or Extra Tasty Crispy.

For Lynn's health and baseball career, the weight loss is probably a good thing. Still, there's something charming about a really out of shape human being who somehow still succeeds in professional athletics. And outside of an offensive line, there's no better place to witness that particular marvel than in baseball where fat men in polyester can strike fear in both the hearts of opposing pitchers and the owners of Chinese buffets.

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Chris Carpenter's Five Best On-Field Obscenities

Pictured: Chris Carpenter
In honor of the (possible), end of Chris Carpenter's time in St. Louis -- not to mention a potentially career-ending situation -- we here at the Riverfront Times thought it was high time we took a look back at all the biggest moments from his tenure here.

No, not his tenure as the staff ace for one of the more successful runs of baseball in Cardinals history, though he was certainly that. We're talking about his tenure here in St. Louis as the scariest, angriest, most intimidating sumbitch there ever has been. The man owned the Busch Stadium mound, and had a lease with option to purchase on your ass. He was also an incredible potty-mouth whose profanities were as hard and nasty as his fastball.

Here are just a few of the highlights...

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Has Chris Carpenter Thrown His Last Pitch for the Cardinals?

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Stop me if you've heard this one before: Chris Carpenter may not pitch for the Cardinals this year.

Now, after hearing that, you may very well be casting about your home, car, or office, looking for a calendar, hoping against hope you haven't fallen into some kind of sinister wormhole to the past, or gotten stuck in some irritating Groundhog Day-esque repeating loop. Hey, we did just have to see all those stupid Punxsutawney Phil stories just a couple days ago, right? It wouldn't be shocking if we all followed Bill Murray down the rabbit groundhog hole.

But no, don't worry. The year is 2013, and this is the first time we've gone through it. Chris Carpenter is just hurt.


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Vladimir Tarasenko and the Defenders: State of the Blues Offense

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Ken Hitchcock, offensive genius?

The other day, I wrote a quick little piece about the Blues looking tired and hitting a bit of a wall in their last game Sunday night. Thanks to an error in utilizing the calendar function on my phone (I would like to blame Samsung for a grand conspiracy to make me look foolish, but it probably has more to do with me misreading a Thu as Tue somewhere along the way), I thought the Blues were playing Tuesday. You can imagine my confusion -- and embarrassment -- when I sat down that night to watch a hockey game and found absolutely no trace of one. 

There is a silver lining to the cloud, though, in spite of me publicly looking stupid: the Blues actually did get their break. They got some much-needed rest, I got the time to write up a fuller piece about the state of the team's offense in the early going, everybody's happy. My dignity is but a small price to pay. 

So, as I imagine the superior smirks of a million dozen readers, let's talk offense, shall we?  

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The Redbirds' New Ronny Cedeno

Above: mathematical proof the Cubs will always suck.
In the neverending chase for mediocrity that is the Cardinal middle infield, a new salvo has been fired, and its name is Ronny Cedeno. Unfortunately, that's ex-Cub Ronny Cedeno, and if there's one thing I know in baseball, it's that the fewer ex-Cubs you have on your team, the better your chances are of winning a World Series. I'm pretty sure Archimedes was working on a theorem to describe it when that soldier showed up to trample his circles and stab him to death.

I have to admit, Cedeno was a player I always kind of wanted for the Cardinals, back in the days when he was a genuine, bona fide, Highly Touted prospect. And then a Highly Touted Young Player, too. Now, though? He's just another ex-Cub, and that only spells trouble in my book. 

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The Blues Back at It Thursday Against Columbus

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Sunday night, it looked like the Blues might have hit a bit of a wall. Right about the time the second period opened, the Minnesota Wild just seemed to start pushing the Blues around. Watching the game, I thought to myself, "Wow. I knew it was going to happen at some point, and here it is."

The 'it' in question was fatigue setting in. Which may, of course, sound bizarre, considering we're talking about a hockey team playing in the first week of the season. How in the world could these players be fatigued, after an extra long offseason and less than a fortnight's worth of play?

Of course, it worked out in the end for the Blues Sunday night, as they put together a third period rally to tie the game, then pulled out the victory in overtime, 5-4, going to 5-1 on the season. Still, for that middle period, this was a team that looked badly winded.

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Game Notes: Blues 3, Predators 0

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It was a night of important rebounds for the Blues -- two of them, to be exact.

The first is relatively easy to spot, as the team rebounded from their first loss of the season, a tough 3-2 defeat by the Blackhawks in Chicago, by beating the Nashville Predators last night 3-0. Back home at the Scottrade Center, the Blues looked almost frighteningly good, pushing a very Nashville club around the ice, imposing their collective will from beginning to end. (Particularly the beginning, as the Note outshot the Predators 9-3 in the first period.) Nashville did try to rally in the third, but even then the Blues never panicked, never got rattled, and kept the pressure on.

Admittedly, a one game losing streak isn't the most impressive thing to rebound from, but even so, it was mightily encouraging to see the Blues come back strong, after a back to back, after a loss, after continued proof the United Center should just be razed immediately and put on one of the best teams in the Western Conference.

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Cards Re-Sign Jason Motte, Avoid Arbitration

Get it? 'Cause Motte was 'arby' eligible? I'll be here all week, folks! (Whether you like it or not....)
I told you the Cardinals would manage to avoid going the full arbitration route with at least some of their eligible players, didn't I? Damned right I did.

Alright, it isn't exactly a shock to see the organization trying to come to terms with players on their own, rather than going through the process. Every team does that with most, if not all, of their own arbitration-eligible players. It just makes sense.

Anyway, the Redbirds have agreed to terms with Jason Motte, signing their closer to a two-year deal. That's three of the five players already signed, and the first to receive a multi-year contract. Barring something weird happening, I fully expect the Cards to get the remaining two signed in the relatively near future. 

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