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Posts Tagged ‘Sporting News’

Joe Posnanski Eulogizes Kansas City Legend

Blogging Ellie nominee Joe Posnanski is back with writes a wonderful tribute to Kansas City icon Bill Grigsby who passed away over the weekend. Grigsby’s departure won’t garner nearly the attention of Duke Snider‘s, but the scribe frames his life with perfect eloquence.

Bill Grigsby was an announcer. He was also a salesman. He was a promoter. He was a storyteller. He was a businessman. He was a bar owner. He was an insurance salesman. He was a pool hustler. He was a job recruiter. He was a guy who worked for the Kansas City A’s in the years when they were dreadful and largely irrelevant – this would cover all the years of the Kansas City A’s – and when people would call the office to ask what time the game started, he would reply: “What time can you get here?”

One of the things that makes Joe Poz so good is the joy he’s able to convey in his writing. Clearly, he learned a bit from watching Grigsby attack life.

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Watson Wins, but Humanity Will Continue

Watson, IBM’s super Jeopardy computer, thrashed Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter in the first game of the trio’s two-match face-off for the future of humanity.

When it was over, Watson earned $35,734 in winnings, with Rutter at $10,400 and Jennings in third with $4,800.

But there’s hope for humanity. Watson missed badly on Final Jeopardy, a relatively straightforward question: “Its largest airport is named for a World War II hero; its second largest, for a World War II battle”

Watson missed the answer – Chicago, which Jennings and Rutter nailed – instead writing “Toronto?????” The question marks indicate the machine’s high level of uncertainty.

(The Canadian city’s major airport is named for Lester B. Pearson, a Nobel Peace Prize winner and Prime Minister. Chicago boats Midway and O’Hare.)

David Ferrucci, the manager of the Watson project at IBM Research, discussed the miss, saying: Read more

The Re-Making of the New York Cosmos

Grant Wahl, America’s best soccer writer, posts a long interview transcript with Terry Byrne, best known as David Beckham‘s former manager and “best mate.” The self-made man has a new gig, however: Helping to bring back the New York Cosmos.

The legendary club featured Pele, Franz Beckenbauer, and other massive names. They were hugely popular in New York, dominating Studio 54 and earning themselves a much-loved documentary. In 1985, they disappeared from the field.

But now, the Cosmos are coming back. Byrne, former Tottenham Hotspurs director Paul Kelmsley, and a few other executives are intent on making the Cosmos Major League Soccer’s 20th franchise in 2013.

In essence, this is a media, marketing, and branding story. How do you transform a franchise that exists in the hearts and minds into one that appears on the field?

Byrne has some thoughts. Read more

ESPN Wins Basic Cable Ratings Race In October

Behind the strength of Monday Night Football, ESPN won the monthly ratings race for basic cable networks during the month of October.

The network averaged 3.7 million viewers between Sept. 27 to Oct. 31 according to a Disney-ABC Television Group analysis of Nielsen data.

TBS finished second with 3.2 million viewers and USA was third with 3 million. All three networks lost viewers compared to last year’s numbers. Read more