Tuesday, July 18, 2017

2K Classic Matchups and Schedule Announced for Providence

The matchups and schedule were just announced for the 2K Classic benefiting the Wounded Warrior Project tournament for this upcoming men's basketball season.  The games will take place at Madison Square Garden on Thursday November 16th and Friday November 17th.

The 4 teams participating in this year's tournament are Washington, Virginia Tech, Providence, and St. Louis.  Here's how the tournament bracket shakes out.

The Friars will take on the Washington Huskies on Thursday and then the winner will face the winner of the Virginia Tech vs. St. Louis game on Friday.

For some reason, the time for only the first game is listed with the schedule.  Assuming the same thing as most tournaments, the second game is usually 2 hours after the first game...at least on the schedule.  In reality, the second game should be 2 1/2 hours after the first game, because the games are never exactly 2 hours, plus you need 20 minutes in between the games for the next two teams to warm up.  So, that being said, the PC/Washington game will most likely start at 9:30 PM on Thursday, November 16th.  The game will be televised on ESPN2.  PC just loooooves having any sort of tournament game start wicked late.  It's kind of their thing I guess.

Washington is not the team that we thought they'd be this year with the firing of head coach Lorenzo Romar and an impressive incoming Freshmen class led by #1 overall prospect phenom Michael Porter, Jr.  With the letting go of Romar, Porter soon followed him on his way to Mizzou.  Washington is coming off a pretty terrible season in which they won only 9 games, despite having the number 1 overall pick, Markelle Fultz on the team.  But hey, it's still better than playing St. Louis most likely.  At least the Huskies have some potential with new coach Mike Hopkins (asst. from 'Cuse) at the helm and retaining some of the highly rated incoming class.

Virginia Tech is the 1 team from the 4 that the Providence would most like to face in the Championship game of this tournament.  Buzz Williams, a somehow still underrated coach in my opinion, leads a Hokie team that should be an NCAA tournament team this year.  Here was my recap of the potential VTech matchup when the Friars non-conference schedule was announced:
Virginia Tech should be ranked or close to ranked when they face off against the Friars at MSG in the 2K Classic.  Buzz Williams has done a great job in a short period of time with the Hokies.  I'm hoping the schedule works out so that we play Washington and VTech and miss out on St. Louis, because let's be honest, St. Louis ain't doing anything good basketball-wise.
The one thing I was hoping for was that the games would be on a Friday and Saturday rather than Thursday and Friday but if they play Virginia Tech on that Friday, then that's the one I'm gong to try and get up there for.  MSG should be filled with PC fans since it's both the only school in the Northeast and might be hard for fans of the other teams to get to during the week.
Of course, the Championship Rounds are set with the 4 teams, but there are Regional Rounds that take place before these games that take place on those 4 teams home courts.  Providence plays Houston Baptist on November 10th and Belmont on November 22nd.  The Houston Baptist game will take place at Alumni Hall due to a scheduling conflict at the Dunk with Comic Con and the Belmont game will be back at the familiar confines of the dunk later on.  Belmont would most likely be around a Top 75 win for the Friars if they were able to take down the Bruins.

I'm pumped that the Friars pre-season tournament is in the Northeast so I have a chance to go to it but I wouldn't mind if they went out to Maui so I could go back there for a vacation...that would be sweet.

Oh, and this is kind cool too...

Bryce Cotton Re-signs With the Perth Wildcats

Paul Kane / Getty Images

Providence College alum Bryce Cotton has chosen to re-sign with the Perth Wildcats for the upcoming basketball season.  After participating with the Atlanta Hawks Summer League squad this year in Las Vegas, Cotton decided to re-join the Wildcats, spurning an offer from Spain in the process.  Cotton had previously played short stints with the Memphis Grizzlies, Utah Jazz, and Phoenix Suns.

Cotton was actually signed while still playing with the Hawks Summer League team.  The uncertainty of signing an NBA contract playing a factor in his decision to sign back to the familiar confines of Perth, Australia.  Cotton also turned down a 10-day contract with the Hawks at the end of last season when he initially joined the Wildcats, igniting their run to a Championship.

Bryce, still just 24 years old, joined a Perth team that was at the bottom of the standings, and in the last 11 regular season games with the team, led them to finish out the season with a 12-4 record, including the playoffs.  Cotton averaged 22.1 points per game over that 16 game span.  The Wildcats went undefeated in the playoffs en route to the Championship and the Grand Final MVP Honors for Cotton, who dominated with a 45-point performance in the deciding game of the Championship series.

Wildcats coach Trevor Gleeson spoke very highly of Bryce on his retention with the team.
"He has a very special skill set and has the unique ability to make his teammates better. He's an incredible scorer, has a team-first mentality, is unselfish, but most of all he's a great person and a great fit for our team."
Now, if that doesn't sound like exactly what Ed Cooley would say about Bryce, I don't know what does.  Good thing the Hawks snatched up Josh Magette to a contract before the Summer League even started.  Who the shit is Josh Magette you might ask?  Just some 27 year old dude who averaged 12.6 ppg in the D-League over parts of three seasons.  I mean, you just HAVE to snatch a guy like that up before someone else does, AmIRight?

This will be the first time that Cotton has returned to the play for the same team in two consecutive years since turning pro.  Cotton had this to say about his choice to return to the defending champion Wildcats.
"Weighing everything up and going into my fourth year (as a pro), sometimes you want to be careful about going into training camp if there's not anything guaranteed because you don't want to pass up contracts you can have overseas.  You can't play basketball forever and at some point, you have to make smart decisions versus risky depending on how early or late you are in your career."
The best of luck to Ice as he embarks on a new season down under...from what I hear, Perth has some awesome fans, and they got a good one in Bryce.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Movie Review: Everybody Wants Some!! (2016)

Movie: Everybody Wants Some!! (2016)

Director: Richard Linklater

Writer: Richard Linklater

Cast: Blake Jenner, Juston Street, Ryan Guzman, Tyler Hoechlin, Wyatt Russell, Glen Powell, Temple Baker, Zoey Deutch, & Sophia Taylor Ali

One-Line Plot Synopsis: A 1980's college baseball team lives up the college lifestyle.

This movie is best described as Dazed and Confused for the 80's.  Dazed and Confused, also written and directed by Richard Linklater, told the story of a group of High School kids in 1976 having the summer of their lives before going into their respective Freshman and Senior years.  The soundtrack, characters, and feel perfectly portrayed the 1970's era and the result was an unforgettable good time movie experience that both Pam and Jim include in their Desert Island Top 5.

Pam's 5 Desert Island movies for those of you who don't remember, were Fargo, Edward Scissorhands, Dazed & Confused, The Breakfast Club, and The Princess Bride.  Basically a perfect 5 and every guy's dream for a girl to have on her list.

Everybody Wants Some takes place in the 1980's and follows a college baseball team but is very much in a similar vain to Dazed & Confused.  The guys are all about partying, having a good time, chasing girls, and competing.  That's what's going on Underneath, the story is about coming of age through your life experiences and realizing who you are as a person. It's comedy with a little dose of self discovery...and I dig it.

The movie is a lot of fun to watch.  I've been on a roll with some thrillers lately but it was nice to hit on one with a comedy.  I could see this movie being super re-watchable, especially if it gets in the rotation of FX or something like that.  It's super easy to watch and there are so many characters that you can choose your favorites from.  

It was weird seeing Tyler Hoechilin all grown up from the Road to Perdition, but I thought he was really good.  Looked a little bit like a young Billy Crudup in the movie if you ask me, but it probably had a lot to do with the grown out hair.

Was it just me or did anything else think that Juston Street's character Jay reminded them of someone who would be in Wet Hot American Summer?

I am huge Richard Linklater fan, as most people probably are.  His writing is completely original and always interesting and entertaining.  It can be heartfelt like the Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, and Before Midnight.  It can be hilarious like School of Rock or Dazed & Confused.  Or it can be completely original the A Scanner Darkly or Waking Life.  Linklater can write incredibly well for any type of genre.

Sidenote, how many movies have exclamation points in the title?  I can remember Saved! having one but I think I'd need some more time to come up with others.  My point is (if there is one) that there really aren't that many movies with punctuation...so that's something, just a thought really.

Rating: 7.5/10

Movie Review: 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)

Movie: 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)

Director: Dan Trachtenberg

Writer: Josh Campbell (Screenplay), Matthew Stuecken (Screenplay), & Damien Chazelle (Screenplay)

Cast: John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher, Jr., & Bradley Cooper

One-Line Plot Synopsis: After getting into a car accident, a woman (Winstead) is held in a shelter by two men (Goodman & Winstead) and told that there has been a chemical attack and she can't go outside.

I don't know what's going on lately, but everybody seems to be making these really great movies with small casts in terrifying enclosed spaces.  First it was Green Room, then it was Don't Breathe, and now it's 10 Cloverfield Lane.  Whatever this trend is, I for one, fucking love it.  These movies are all intense and so well done.

10 Cloverfield Lane takes off where the breakout J.J. Abrams hit Cloverfield leaves off.  I have to admit, I enjoyed the idea of Cloverfield much more than I did the actual movie.  The constant camera movement jolting back and forth gave me more of a headache as the movie went on.  I would have much preferred it to be sparingly used rather than the only camera method used for the entire film.

What actually might be scarier than the monsters in monster movies is the kind of monsters that regular people can become.  That's a much scarier notion to me for a movie.  The underlying monstrosities that come to the surface of certain people when they are put into extreme survival situations.  The things that people can be capable of in these scenarios is absolutely a terrifying scenario.  John Goodman toes that line superbly of being a paranoid owner of an apocalypse bunker that might be crazy but also right or actually just being a psychopath with made up notions of doomsday situations.

The movie plays out as a fun game of trying to decipher what the truth of the events that happened outside the bunker actually are and what events might have transpired within the bunker before everyone got there.

Mary Elizabeth Winstead.  

Ever sing Scott Pilgrim, I've found her completely gorgeous.  It's that combination of the girl next door, with the cool girl, with just being flat out beautiful.  I'm not sure what it is...but whatever you're doing, keep it up.  She was also great in Smashed playing the alcoholic wife of Aaron Paul.

She's fantastic in this movie and I hope to see her much more in movies in the future.  She was probably my favorite part of this past season of Fargo.  Also, shout out to Sky High, I really enjoyed that movie and I hope I wasn't the only one.  I can envision Winstead on the same sort of trajectory as Brie Larson, just on a little bit of a lesser scale so far.  Smashed was her Short-Term 12, the life of an alcoholic and 10 Cloverfield Lane was her Room, a held against her will movie.

Rating: 8.5/10

Movie Review: Don't Breathe (2016)

Movie: Don't Breathe (2016)

Director: Fede Alvarez

Writer: Fede Alvarez & Rodo Sayagues

Cast: Dylan Minnette, Jane Levy, Stephen Lang, Daniel Zovatto, & Emma Bercovici

One-Line Plot Synopsis: Thieves (Minnette, Levy, & Zovatto) break into a supposed blind man's (Lang) house to try and steal his fortune.

A very simple story and premise set up Don't Breathe, but everything is done so well that it works incredibly well.  Three young thieves played by Dylan Minnette, Jane Levy, and Daniel Zovatto, break into the house of a blind man (Stephen Lang) to try and steal his fortune that he has hidden in a safe.  However, it's never that easy is it?  

The movie pulls off a feeling of complete claustrophobia as the surroundings of the house seem to close in on you throughout the movie as everyone tries to make their daring escapes.  On top of that, the fact that the blind man works totally off of his hearing and touch, I sometimes found myself unknowingly holding my breath during some intense scenes.  The movie plays off of that deafening silence to translate feelings of dread and anxiousness.  I'm already an anxious person so those scenes had me on edge.

I would definitely classify this more as a thriller than a horror movie, much like how I see the movie Green Room.  Both of those movies play off that same feeling of trying to escape a terrifying situation that the characters unexpectedly find themselves in, and both of them do it very, very well.  

I have referred to Dylan Minnette as the poor man's Logan Lerman in the past, but I think I'm ready to separate the two now as Minnette keeps on impressing me with good work, but I mean look at how similar this guys look.  

I still count the show Awake as one of my favorites to get cancelled to early...I should probably do a top ten list at some point for shows that were cancelled to early.  If that show was made a couple of years later with all of the platforms to choose your TV from, I'm sure it would've gotten more of a shot.  Minnette has come out with the super underrated Prisoners, the surprisingly very well done American remake Let Me In, and recently starred in the breakout TV hit, 13 Reasons Why

Everybody should take note that this is how you do a good thriller.  An original story, great direction, and a stellar job from the cast all-around.

Don't Breathe 2 has apparently been announced according to IMDb but I'm not sure how a sequel would turn out.  It doesn't list a potential cast yet but the director, Fede Alvarez looks like he'd be back which is a great start.

Rating: 8/10

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Movie Review: The Girl on the Train (2016)

Movie: The Girl on the Train (2016)

Diretor: Tate Taylor

Writer: Erin Cressida Wilson (Screenplay), Paula Hawkins (Novel)

Cast: Emily Blunt, Justin Theroux, Rebecca Ferguson, Luke Evans, Haley Bennett, Edgar Ramirez, Allison Janney, Lisa Kudrow, Laura Prepon, & Darren Goldstein

One-Line Plot Synopsis: A alcoholic divorcee (Blunt) becomes entangled in a murder investigation of a couple she sees on her train ride home each day.

It may sound cliche, but this statement has literally never been truer, the book is better than the movie.  The Girl on the Train book is no less than 5x better than the movie.  Before I get into actual movie, I just want to ask a question...why was the movie set in New York?  The book is set in England.  Emily Blunt is English.  Why are they setting the movie in the States with Emily Blunt as the lead??  What's the logic behind that?  

I'm trying to remember the last time I was so disappointed by a movie after liking a book so much.  It's probably been since The Lovely Bones.  I think it's hard to match the internal struggles and thoughts of a book character when translated to the screen but usually there is an even compromise that can be made.  

For some reason, I don't remember Megan, played by Haley Bennett, having such a large role in the book.  I've been told by the wife that I'm "misremebering" and that she had a big part in the book but I just don't remember such an in depth dive into her backstory.  She seemed like she was almost the main character in the movie and I just didn't get that feeling in the book.  But...I don't want to be the guy that just compares the book and the movie, so let's just focus on the movie.

Emily Blunt is great.  She's in my top ten current favorite actresses working today.  That's a fact.  I have to admit though, that I wasn't exactly picturing Emily Blunt when I envisioned the role of Rachel.  She was much more of a wreck and a good deal more overweight.  Blunt was actually pregnant during a good portion of the filming but since she wasn't divulging her pregnancy to many people during the filming, it actually took away from the depressed and "let go" version of the character.  Justin Theroux was actually very well cast as Tom.  He has that intensity that comes off as a little bit scary but in a way where you want to like him but are unsure of his intentions at pretty much all time.  He's just an intense dude.

Even thought he movie is just shy of two hours long, it sure feels like a hell of a lot longer.  The movie drags and an almost unbearable pace in the middle and by the end, you just kind of want it to be over.  You want the twist(s) to be revealed just so you can finish it and move on to something more enjoyable...and easy to follow. 

Rating: 5/10

Movie Review: If I Stay (2014)

Movie: If I Stay (2014)

Director: R.J. Cutler

Writer: Shauna Cross (Screenplay), Gayle Forman (Novel)

Cast: Chloe Grace Moretz, Jamie Buckley, Mireille Enos, Joshua Leonard, Liana Liberato, Stacey Keach, Gabrielle Rose, & Jakob Davies

One-Line Plot Synopsis: After being in a car accident and put into a coma, Mia Hall (Moretz) has an out of body experience where she had to decide whether or not to come back to her body or not.

I'm just going to say it, I'm a big Chloe Grace Moretz fan.  I feel like Abigail Breslin must be pissed because she's now basically the poor man's Chloe Grace Moretz after exploding onto the acting scene with Signs and an Oscar Nomination for Little Miss Sunshine.  Chloe has just had a way more interesting career and has really grown into herself.  Plus, she's dating David Beckham's son which has to be pretty cool.  I'm not sure what that kid does other than be David Beckham's son but these days that's probably more than enough.

OK, sorry about the random side rant but onto the movie.  First off, I have to say that this was the wife's choice of movie when we had a night in (which is pretty much every night now with the baby).  I have to throw her a bone every once in a while so I try and steer her pick to at least have someone I like in it.  

Even with Grace Moretz in the movie, it was pretty blah.  Chloe's character Mia Hall, gets into a car accident and while in a coma from the crash, has to make the decision whether or not to come back to her body.  There have definitely been movies very similar to this premise, something like The Invisible comes to mind.  By the way, The Invisible has a very good trailer for a movie being so very mediocre to less than mediocre.  

If I was a teenage girl who read sappy teen romance novels, I would have probably eaten this movie up...unfortunately, I'm a 33 year old married father, so I'm probably not the target audience they were looking for anyway.  The movie has a very puppy love feel to it and a "misunderstood teen" vibe to it that I'm sure some of the youngings can relate to...but not for me.

Rating: 5/10

Khavon Moore Includes Providence in his List of Final 12 Schools

5-Star recruit Khavon Moore cut his final list of schools to 12 and wouldn't you know it, Providence College made the cut.  The final list of schools includes Providence, UCLA, USC, Oklahoma, Marquette, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Clemson, and Mercer.
That's a really interesting mishmash of teams if you ask me.  There are teams from the west, teams from the midwest, teams from the south....and just one from the east, Providence.  

As with pretty much every recruit that Providence is targeting, there is another Big East team involved.  This time it's Marquette who the Friars are going up against.  Unlike most final lists, this one seems like it's probably the first cut, and that there might be a couple more to go before Moore makes his final decision on where to play next year.

The Friars still have 4 more available scholarships for the 2018-2019 class, with A.J. Reeves already headlining the class coming in next fall.  Moore is a versatile forward out of Georgia with one of the highest ceilings of anyone in next year's class of basketball players.  He basically has guard skills in a humongous stretch Armstrong frame.  His handle for a guy his size is extremely hard to come by in a player.

Let's get to the highlights...and this first one is just from his Sophomore season...Sophomore!

John Linehan Named to the Hartford Hawks Basketball Staff

The all-time steals leader in NCAA Men's Basketball History and Friar legend John Linehan has been named to the Hartford Hawks Men's Basketball staff for the upcoming basketball season.
Linehan moves from being an assistant coach for Brown starting in 2015 in the Ivy League to the Hartford Hawks of the America East Conference.  Hartford was a paltry 9-23 last season and ranked near the bottom in the country of basically every team statistic you can.  They were 310th in point per game, 314th in rebounds per game, 297th in assists per game, and 283rd in points allowed.

The Hawks are losing their leading scorer, Jalen Ross (19.9 ppg), but are returning almost all of the rest of their players from last year's team.  Three guys (Jason Dunne, J.R. Lynch, & Hassan Attia) averaged at least 1 steal per game last year and Linehan can obviously help enhance that defensive prowess, especially with the guards.  The assists for the team need to improve as the leading assist guy on the team only averaged 2.8 assists per game last year, which is not nearly enough.  I think Linehan has the ability to drastically improve those numbers as well, something that the Hawks will need to make significant strides with as a team.

Although Linehan is just getting starting on the coaching front, there has already been some Providence guards who have excelled in coaching and developing players.  Obviously Billy Donovan is the first one that comes to mind in leading Florida to back-to-back National Championships but I think the more direct line to Linehan is God Shammgod.

Shammgod was a incredible asset to the Providence staff while he was here and he has very translatable skills to pass to young guards.  I think that John Linehan has that same ability so I'm excited to see how the Hartford guards develop this year.

There was a really good quote from Linehan about the Hartford job and Hartford in general in the Hartford Courant.
“I didn’t know much about Hartford really outside of coming down to the [XL] Center and getting our heads split open by UConn, but I love it. I love West Hartford, but I l really love the opportunity Coach Gallagher has given me. I’m still learning but I think there are some things I can help the players with, especially the guards. I can kind of show them the game the way I played it a little bit and we can go from there. I’m just really excited about the opportunity.” 
It would be pretty awesome to see Linehan out in the West Hartford area or perhaps at a Friar watch party around here this year.  I'm thinking of starting a podcast for the Friars this year and it would be pretty damn cool to have him on in person if that comes together.

I can't write a post about John Linehan without showing off some highlights of the man.  His quickness was freaking deadly.

Monday, July 3, 2017

NBA Summer League Schedule for Former Friars

This is what they call the dog days of summer for sports.  You're basically relegated to baseball and the weekend gold tournament right now and waiting for some other sports to come back in the fall.  Thankfully, the off-season for the NBA has been bananas, so they haven't had much coverage fall off since the Finals.  With the NBA Draft having just passed and fanbases starting to hype up some potential franchise changers before their shine wears off, let's get ready to see some of our Friars take part in this year's NBA Summer League.

With LeDontae Henton already back in the Philippines, the Friars that are a part of this year's summer league include Kris Dunn with the Chicago Bulls, Bryce Cotton with the Atlanta Hawks, and Ben Bentil with the San Antonio Spurs.

Friars Schedule:

Monday July 3rd: San Antonio Spurs vs. Utah Jazz; 9 PM in Orlando on NBA TV

Wednesday July 5th: San Antonio Spurs vs. Boston Celtics; 7 PM in Utah on NBA TV

Thursday July 6th: San Antonio Spurs vs. Philadelphia 76ers; 7 PM in Utah on NBA TV

Friday July 7th: Atlanta Hawks vs. Brooklyn Nets; 8 PM in Las Vegas on NBA TV

Saturday July 8th: Chicago Bulls vs. Dallas Mavericks; 4:30 PM in Las Vegas on NBA TV
Saturday July 8th: San Antonio Spurs vs. Miami Heat; 8 PM in Las Vegas on ESPNU

Sunday July 9th: Atlanta Hawks vs. New Orleans Pelicans; 4 PM in Las Vegas on NBA TV
Sunday July 9th: San Antonio Spurs vs. Philadelphia 76ers; 10:30 PM in Las Vegas on ESPN2

Monday July 10th: Atlanta Hawks vs. Chicago Bulls; 4 PM in Las Vegas on ESPNU

Tuesday July 11th: San Antonio Spurs vs. Portland Trailblazers; 4 PM in Las Vegas on NBA TV
Tuesday July 11th: Chicago Bulls vs. Washington Wizards; 6 PM in Las Vegas on NBA TV

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Kris Dunn Introduced by the Chicago Bulls

Kris Dunn was introduced yesterday by the Chicago Bulls in a press conference for the three new additions to the team, along with Zach LaVine and Lauri Markkanen.

Here's a quick video to Bulls fans that Kris did the day before the conference when he got to Chicago.
This was probably the best part of the conference for me, Kris acknowledging the downs from last year and putting in the work to make sure he doesn't have another year like that.  Hard work and dedication.
Dunn will be sporting number 32 next year which will seem odd as he's worn number 3 since his High School days with New London.

Perhaps the best part of the entire press conference was who actually showed up to support Kris in his transition to his new team...that's right, Tommy Planek.
That's what's so great about the Friars.  Friars both past and present show up to support their fellow Friars.  That's the culture that Ed Cooley is always talking about.  Tommy Planek is from Oak Park, Illinois so he's just a stone's throw from Chicago, but it's great to see these two Friar legends back together.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Movie Review: The Gift (2015)

Movie: The Gift (2015)

Director: Joel Edgerton

Writer: Joel Edgerton

Cast: Joel Edgerton, Jason Bateman, Rebecca Hall, Allison Tolman, Tim Griffin, Busy Phillips, Adam Lazarre-White, Wendell Pierce, & Beau Knapp

One-Line Plot Synopsis: A newly married couple (Bateman & Hall) move back to California only to encounter an old schoolmate (Edgerton) from the husband's past who keeps offering unwanted gifts and brings a secret to the surface from the two men's past.

The Gift, both the writing and directing debut for one of my favorite current actors Joel Edgerton, is about tension and suspense.  Edgerton does a great job of creating a claustrophobic feel to the movie that gets your spidey-sense tingling at all times.  Jason Bateman and Rebecca Hall play newlyweds who just moved back to California.  Upon doing so, Bateman runs into an old schoolmate (Edgerton) from growing up who he used to bully back in the day.  Edgerton's character Gordo keeps leaving unwanted gifts to the couple until a secret of their past comes to light.

OK, so I basically just did a more in depth plot summary there more than anything else.  For a directing debut, Edgerton really has a knack for suspenseful scene set up and an ominous feeling that something bad is going to happen at all times.  Focusing on the reactions and movements of people responding to a situation really pays off as your responding more to how they're feeling than what the antagonist is specifically doing.  

Edgerton's looking is a departure from how we've seen him with darker hair and a sketchy looking goatee.  He somehow manages to pull off being menacing but also non-threatening at the same time.  It's a really weird feeling wherein you feel bad for him but also continue to question every move he may or may not be capable of making.

The name Gordo kind of has that same feeling.  Depending on the look of the person with that name, it can have a completely different effect on how they're viewed.  Gordo can be a weakling or Gordo can be a looming sort of name.

Rebecca Hall continues to be one of my favorite actresses and has a really good knack at picking which roles she chooses to play.  

I'd like to see Jason Bateman in more serious roles but I'll always remember him as Michael Bluth...

This movie had the tone and temperament of a small indie thriller and that chilling thought that in the back of your head that something like this could very realistically happen in real life.  That's the scariest part of any thriller movie...when it's not that far fetched of a scenario.

Rating: 7/10

Two PC Friar Hockey Players Selected in the 2017 NHL Draft

Ben Mirageas, a PC Friar recruit who will begin his Providence career in 2018 and Jacob Bryson, sophomore at PC were selected this past Saturday at NHL Entry Draft.

Ben Mirageas, from nearby Newburyport, Mass., was selected by the New York Islanders in the 3rd round with the 77th overall pick.  Mirageas had a helluva May, helping the Chicago Steel win the United States Hockey League Championship over the Sioux City Musketeers in 5 games.  Mirageas showed off his passing prowess with 10 assists in 14 games in route the the Championship.  

Ben started from down the road from me at Avon Old Farms for prep school before moving on to the USHL with the Bloomington Thunder.  After requesting a trade from the Thunder, he ended up with the Chicago Steel and the rest, as they say, is history.  Mirageas stands at 6'1'' and 180 pounds and has been labeled as an offensive minded defenseman, although he persists that he has rounded out his game to be more of a two-way defender throughout last season in the USHL.
Jacob Bryson, of Ontario, Canada, just wrapped up his Freshman year with Friars and scored 20 points in 39 games for PC last year.  Bryson, also a defenseman, was selected by the Buffallo Sabres in the 4th round with the 99th overall selection.  

Bryson finished the season with 17 assists which was good for 3rd amongst Hockey East rookie defensemen and 6th in the entire NCAA for rookie defensemen.  The Sabres apparently could see the development Bryson has already had at Providence.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Top 50 Recruit A.J. Reeves Commits to Providence College

Providence Friar target and Top 50 2018 recruit A.J. Reeves committed to Ed Cooley and the Providence College Friars on campus during their hosting of the Elite Camp and in person this morning...and just like that, the Friars have a stud for next year already.

Reeves is a true two-way player and is within range as soon as he steps in the gym.  He has worked on improving his outside shot and the results are obvious whenever you get a chance to watch him take the court.

Here's what I wrote when Reeves cut his final list of schools to 4.

The Friars were able to beat out Virginia, Villanova, and Louisville to secure the commitment of Reeves and his relationship with Coach Ed Cooley was a huge part of that.  The Friars have now reached 4 straight NCAA tournaments and are likely to make it 5 in a row this year.  They are opening up the $40 million Ruane Friar Development Center in September 2018 and will house a basketball-centric facility within the center.  Providence has become a contender to receive serious consideration and commitments from top recruits and this will only continue to grow with the program continuing to improve.

Just a taste of the athleticism you can expect from Reeves...
Watch Brendan McGair of the Pawtucket Times & Woonsocket Call interview with A.J. Reeves talking about his verbal commitment to the Friars on the Providence College campus.

The fact that Reeves wanted to commit to Cooley in person says a lot about the young man's character and further goes to show how he'll fit seamlessly into the culture that Cooley, AD Bob Driscoll, the assistant coaches, and players have cultivated at PC.

Let's Fucking Go!!

Friday, June 23, 2017

Kris Dunn Headed to the Chicago Bulls in Draft Deal for Jimmy Butler

The 2017 NBA Draft was filled with tons of moves from a variety of teams but none was bigger than Jimmy Butler being traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves in a 5-man deal.

Chicago Receives:
Kris Dunn
Zach LaVine
8th Pick (Lauri Markkanen - Arizona)

Minnesota Receives:
Jimmy Butler
16th Pick (Justin Patton - Creighton)

Let's go through what Chicago's getting first.  Last year's 5th pick, Kris Dunn, didn't get a ton of playing time behind starting guard Ricky Rubio for Minnesota this past year.  Tom Thibodeau is very similar to Larry Brown in how he handles NBA rookies.  There's obvisouly a learning curve for rookies coming into the league and Thibs seems very reluctant to play these guys through the growing pains.  Dunn has oodles of potential with his combination of athleticism, defensive prowess, and his ability to facilitate with his drives.  Dunn showed flashes of the player that he can eventually grow into but didn't get much of a played just over 17 minutes a game, averaging 3.8 ppg/2.4 apg/2.1 rpg.  These aspects of his game that he struggled with college are still there with his long distance shooting (28.8% 3FG) but I think he can improve those with some hard off-season work.

Dunn will be behind NBA veteran Rajon Rondo but I think he can benefit from Rondo as their games seem to actually be very similar.  Rondo is uber-athletic and has historically struggled shooting the ball.  I think he can help Dunn adapt at the next level.  Dunn will at least get more of a chance to play with the younger direction that Chicago seems to be headed in.

Zach LaVine has transformed himself into an exciting player with real scoring ability, averaging 18.9 ppg last year before tearing his ACL.  Reports are that he is on schedule and will make a full recovery.

The Bulls used the 8th pick in the draft on Arizona 7-footer Lauri Markkanen.  I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover but a big game named Lauri isn't exactly striking fear into anyone if you ask me.  The big guy, originally from Finland, has some range for a big guy that stretches out past the three point line.  He connected on 69 (nice) threes last year, which was the most made 3-pointers by a 7-footer in the last 20 years.  That's a nice stat, but I'm not sure how many 7-footers he's really going up against in made 3-pointers, so it's not much of a sample size.  He looks pretty slow off the dribble to me but has a nice looking shot.

Minnesota gets three-time All-Star Jimmy Butler.  A true two-way player who has made three second-team all-defense squads.  Last year, the Marquette product averaged 23.9 ppg/6.2 rpg/5.5 apg and made a bunch of clutch shots at the end of games.  The fact that the Timberwolves lost the most games in the NBA after leading by 10 or more, makes him even more of an impact player for the team.  He slips right into the 3-spot and him and Andrew Wiggins on the wings give you some outstanding perimeter defense.  KAT as an anchor and Rubio playing the role of distributer round out this team really well.  Everyone seems to have a role for next year's T-Wolves.  

My favorite part might have been the response from one of Butler's trainers...I think he might not like the Bulls front office, but what do I know.

If that wasn't enough, somehow Minny managed to convince Chicago to also send over the 16th pick in this year's draft.  I have no idea how they swindled Chicago out of that one.  If Chicago's plan is to get younger (and it's not like Jimmy Butler is old anyway), then what are they doing sending out first round draft picks?  Minnesota drafted Creighton's Justin Patton who reminds me a lot of Marcus Camby in his range, athleticism, and frame.  He's not the same defensive player as Camby but he only just turned 20 last week and will have time to fill out his body over the next couple of years as he learns defensive schemes from freaking Thibs, one of the best guys to learn D from in the NBA.  

I'm calling it right now that Patton will be a better pro than Markkanen.

Overall, I think Minnesota handily won the trade but I'm excited to see what Kris Dunn can do when given a much longer leash and playing time.

Also, that Kris Dunn Bulls jersey is going to be absolute FIRE.