Sunday, December 06, 2009

Sunday sports section 

[] Peyton Manning's secret play calling language.

[] Hey, Tiger, every crisis creates new opportunity:
A dating website called the Ashley Madison Agency, which specialises in arranging affairs, has offered Woods $5m to star in an advert.

[] Some NFL teams pass too often, some run too often, Brian Burke gives his take on which does which and by how much.

[] Don't worry (too much) if your baseball team signs an older free agent, says JC Bradbury...
... players perform within two percent of their peaks from ages 26 to 32. Extending beyond this range, the dropoff isn't particularly steep. According to my estimates, a hitter who has a .900 OPS at his peak would be expected to post around an .850 OPS at 35; a pitcher with a peak 3.5 ERA is expected to post around a 3.75 ERA at 35.

Player performance tends to plateau with age rather than peak -- more like Stone Mountain than the Matterhorn. Therefore, a good free agent in his early-30s will likely still be a good player when his contract expires.

[] Football fans first have to be miserable to be able to become truly happy. Don't we all.

[] In case you missed our earlier post on the subject: Kudos to college football's biggest winner, Charlie Weis!

[] How can a monopoly sports gambling franchise go bankrupt? Have it be run by the government...

OTB filed for bankruptcy Thursday, saying it needs time to reorganize into a leaner, meaner betting machine.

The New York City Off-Track Betting Corp., more than $500 million in debt, will keep its betting operations going while under Chapter 9 of the federal bankruptcy law.

Despite taking more than $1 billion in bets a year, OTB has long been unable to cover its costs... [NY Daily News]

If the betting operation were closed instead of reorganized, New York City OTB would face debt of more than $600 million ... The largest portion of that would be to cover workers’ pension and health-care benefits ... The reorganization plan calls for a $250 million bond sale to pay debts... [Bloomberg]

Go broke on retiree costs, run up more government debt to cover them. Sound familiar?

From our prior coverage...
New York City's OTB, saddled with a bloated payroll, too many outlets, a huge fleet of cars [used by its executives] and no-bid contracts ... a scathing state audit has found...

The audit found that OTB management had not conducted a study of its staffing needs since 1981 -- before the initiation of telephone and Internet betting options ...
When politicians can manage a monopoly gambling franchise into bankruptcy this way, of course I want them running my health care too!