In Week 2 of the Around the Dorm playoffs, the “Ref,” Bobby Olivier, challenges News Editor Hilarey Wojtowicz, Sports Editor Brandon Gould and Correspondent Chloe Fama to answer questions about whether the Cleveland Indians or Pittsburgh Pirates will have a better season, if the New York Knicks will make a deeper run than the Philadelphia 76ers and if the Barry Bonds trial matters.
1. Much to my entertainment, the Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays have both had terrible starts to the season, but even more odd is that the Cleveland Indians and Pittsburgh Pirates both have winning records. Which team has a better chance of having the better season in 2011?
HW: The Indians definitely have a better chance at a better season. Although they started out with two losses, they have been consistent with wins ever since, and are now 6-2 on the season. The Pirates have been so inconsistent with their wins so far, winning and losing to the same team in a three-game series. The Indians also beat my favorite team, the Red Sox, and although that hasn’t seemed a hard feat for any team this season, it is definitely an accomplishment for them. The Indians are going to go farther than the Pirates this season.
BG: The last time the Pittsburgh Pirates were anywhere close to being good I was coming out of the womb. The Pirates usually have a decent collection of talent, but that talent hasn’t been able to get it done over the majority of the last two decades. The Indians haven’t had much success historically either, but they were a playoff team a few years back. The Indians have four players with at least six RBI at this point, and once outfielder Shin-Soo Choo — who I think will be the Indians most productive player this year — slips out of his slump, the Indians will have a lineup that is stacked from top to bottom.
CF: The Cleveland Indians have the best chance of the four listed teams of having the better season. Their 7-2 record has them off to a great start, and they seem to be on a winning streak. They are first in the AL Central Division, and unless the Red Sox and Rays have some miraculous turn around, success is looking good for the Indians.
BO: Brandon gets the 3 for giving me the most legitimate answer. Hilarey, you are a Red Sox fan, therefore you get 2 points. Chloe, I think you misread the question — 1.
2. New York Knicks or Philadelphia 76ers. Who goes further in the playoffs? Why?
HW: The Knicks have been good, but they make me nervous with their six-game winning streaks and then a five-game losing streak, so I am going to go with the 76ers. They’ve got Elton Brand who will help them win the games they need in the playoffs. The Knicks have Carmelo Anthony, but he hasn’t been enough to help them so far, so I
doubt they’d be able to get any further in the playoffs. The 76s will definitely go further this year in the playoffs.
BG: The New York Knicks are my team to bet on when the playoffs start. The 76ers will be lucky enough to finish the season over .500, and they just don’t have a guy who can take over a game and carry his team. While the 76ers are lacking in that department, the Knicks are thriving. The Knicks have two players who can steal the show on any given night in Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony. Stoudemire and Anthony are currently two of the top five scorers in the league and are a threat to go off for 50 points any time they step on the court. Add in veteran Chauncey Billups, who knows a thing or two about the playoffs, and you’ve got the formula for a playoff run. The Knicks didn’t have a great regular season, but if they start to click in the playoffs, they could be very dangerous.
CF: The New York Knicks. Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire are key aspects of this team and can win any given basketball game. New York will play either Miami or Boston in the first round of playoffs, making for an easy first win. Miami seems like a more favorable match-up since they lack inside defenders where Anthony and Stoudemire do most of their damage. Boston has been playing uncharacteristically bad but will probably bring its A-game to the playoffs. The 76ers may be focused, but any team they verse in the playoffs will be a better basketball team, resulting in early elimination.
BO: Brandon wins round two — 3 points for a solid answer. Chloe, I don’t know if Miami or Boston would be considered easy wins, but who knows, maybe the Knicks will pull an upset — 2. Hilarey gets 1.
3. On a scale of one to 10, 10 being that you care the most, how much do you care about the Barry Bonds perjury trial? Should it get as much prominent coverage as it does?
HW: I honestly care about a three on a scale of one to 10. But, it is something that deserves coverage because who knows what other players have been using steroids and enhancement drugs to do better. There has always been that discussion of steroids when it comes to professional baseball players, and the trial with Barry Bonds just shows how important it is to check for these things. Who knows who else has been using them? There might be more trials like this in the future, so this one deserves coverage. But, I still don’t really care that much.
BG: Can zero be an option? Because I really don’t care at all. I understand that Barry Bonds is a public figure, so the details of his life are going to be covered like this, but honestly I’ve forgotten about Barry Bonds and I’d like to keep it that way. The year he hit 73 home runs I was the biggest Barry Bonds fan out there. I loved the fact that his godfather was Willie Mays, but once I started hearing all the steroid talk, my interest started to fade. Bonds never liked the media coverage, and if he had it his way there would be no stories about him. Right now, I’d like to have it his way.
CF: Honestly, I give the trial a one. I feel as if it is just another case of a successful athlete trying to lie his way out of trouble. Sure, we should all hear the message that cheating and lying are unacceptable behaviors, and he should be punished for his wrongdoings, but the government has more pressing issues to be worrying about. It has been more than three years since he was first charged with lying to a grand jury when he denied knowingly using performance-enhancing drugs. The trial is a waste of time and money, and at this point who really cares if he lied.
BO: Brandon sweeps the leg … and the game. Hilarey and Chloe, honestly both of these answers were not very strong. Hilarey, there hasn’t always been steroids talk in baseball. Chloe, I wouldn’t say the trial is a waste of time, many people care about this — 1 point for both.
Brandon sweeps this week’s AtD, 9 – 4 – 4.