Most of Tuesday’s matchups were over early (Tuesday teams went 7-1), but I have to say that during the few close games the atmosphere was electric. Nice job fans, keep it up. I’m sure you can overcome any bluegrass letdown that might occur late. Next week dj all Thursday.
As for prediction, well, going into Tuesday the only things I was sure of were that Back In Black would win 10-0 and that Guacabowle wouldn’t stand a chance. Turns out those underdogs put up 650s and 660s in battling to the finish. Top seeds will need to be on the lookout tonight because the gap is closing and the underdogs are hungry.
#2 Guns of Brighton (10-2) -5 vs #15 Saucy posse (5-7): Guns of Brighton finished 2nd on Thursday but has definitely received the most talk of any Thursday team about making a potentially deep run in the playoffs. Maybe it’s because they have Mr. Pickles, who battled for Top Dawg to the final day, or that their Captain Invisible Hand has battled for most improved all season, or that big free-agent signing Coco Lopez just wins playoff games. They face a SauPo team that hit hard times this year, almost inexplicably. Walter and Hot Sauce looked like a potentially dominant 1-2 force, but they haven’t adjusted yet this year. Maybe Thursday they do – Walter finds his 200’s, Hot Sauce finds his mojo and Uncle Schmucker continues his out-of nowhere resurgence. After Tuesday’s games, I could see just about anything. One thing for SauPo, they excel most when given up, so, here’s their chance.
#12 Nutz (6-6) -3 vs #5 UREA! (9-3): I don’t know if T-$ will be there or not. I’m guessing he will. If he’s in, and Knuckles is there, UREA! is capable of making this one as interesting as a Tecumseh windup. J-Bird has built a team that is clutch and finished an impressive 9-3. They are not as nice and innocent as they would have you believe – they have the competitive drive of a crazed tiger – and if you are lulled to a happy place they tear you apart. Nutz is hard to lull to a happy place. They started 0-5 before battling all the way back to even their record. Bustah is their ace and he would love to see how far he can take them. He is ably backed by Fuzzy and Salty Nuts. Hootie and Peanut will need to rise to the occasion against the blonde bombers pacing UREA!.
#6 Still L.O.S. (7-5) -4 vs #11 Tequila Mockingbirds (7-5): L.O.S. has the talent to make a championship run, but that has been said every year. They are even better than normal in 2012, and Double Cheese and Precious form an intimidating pair. Mr. Stiffy has been quiet lately but may have just been waiting for the playoffs. Alley-Lujah is the key – pacing the team to a tight win last week with a top-point game 2.
The T-Birds are no strangers to the playoffs. Their roster boasts 5 BoPo finals’ games of experience. They have a former Captain of the Year. They still have the coolest shirts in school. Harlyn P may finally be regaining his form. They are a scrappy, veteran bunch capable of pulling this upset if they have everything break just right.
#6 I.C.B.I.N.G. (9-3) -1 vs #11 My Balls (5-7): This one could be really good. When both teams were looking at some of the potential teams they could play in the first round, they both hoped for each other, seeing each other as the best shots for a win. Pretty fun. My Balls have a very focused team in Barry Violet and DC Lane, with Big Red transforming her game in recent weeks to have two weeks of very strong scores. They also have Lt. Striker – and that could mean anything between 85 and 215 more pins per game.
ICBING had a great seven game win streak this year and started to play better as the season progressed. Peanut Gutter has a great shot if he’ll play himself. Sweet Creamy and Deep Fried have been bowling well above average of late, and Fabio has shown a few late signs of regaining his form. There will likely be brutal heckling going on, and that’s why I give ICBING the edge.
Late Games (have your team prepared to start at 8PM in case prior match ends in 2 games)
#1 Yay! (11-1) -7 vs #16 No-Eye-Deer (5-7): Give Ralphie some credit – she lost three of the top 12 bowlers in the league, and rebuilt a team that finished 11-1. Hats off to you. Now they make their playoff debut. Tom Smallwood and Yao Romo are becoming household names, and should form a formidable twin towers to counter N.E.D. frontman Shifter Pawl. N.E.D. surprised last week with a convincing win to clinch a playoff spot. In that game Shifter got some much needed help from the long missing Deez Nutz. N.E.D. can be dangerous if they play like last week, but Yay! should have the firepower to advance to the game they really want next week.
#3 T.D.Y.O.B. (9-3) -5 vs #14 D-GUTS (6-6): Dr. Thunder likes to engage, that we know. Those attempts may fall on deaf ears against D-GUTS, as from the sounds of their leader Cap’n Collection they “know [they’ll] lose”. Could be his team has no hope, or could be a clever play to throw the Dr off balance by letting his attempted headgames go unchallenged. Interesting. D-GUTS had a couple of big nights, and did go 6-6 on Tuesday, so they’re no pushover. That said, T.D.Y.O.B. has never lost a first round game and they are focused on moving on this year.
#7 Strikes Of Hazzard (7-5) -11 vs #10 Wrecking Balls (7-5): This one looks like a blowout, but that’s what we thought about the Back In Black/Balls of Fury Game too. Uncle Jesse has a very talented team. He also got himself a taste of winning this offseason when he assembled a a BoPo super-team to dominate a very low-key business league. They should be fine, but this team has had crazy nights that could only be explained by them hitting the still too hard. Wrecking Balls will need to hope for that and simultaneously bring their a-game. They ill have their most dangerous team, with Swing and Swanny both in the lineup for perhaps the first time. The Dude is scheduled to get back from San Fran around 7, will he make it? Will time in California have helped replenish his Dudeness?
#2 B.E.E.R. (10-2) -2 vs PLAY-IN Young & Bowled (4-8): Young and the Bowled and Play-In hardly belong in the same sentence. This is a team that had a slow start, but was last seen pushing L.O.S. to the limit in the last week of the season. One big reason for the turnaround is Pistol Pete. If you’d seen the horrifying monstrosity that was his right hand at the beginning of the season, you’d have wondered if he’d be able to even keep it. Now Pete and his FrankenFinger are back to where they were when he was top-5 draft league bowler. Senator ITZ has been solid all year and just posted his first league 200 last week. The Truth has the wight of the world on his shoulders trying to shake off last year’s playoffs, but he did just open a game with nine straight strikes last week. If Lucky regains her all star-form, they have a 650 potential lineup.
B.E.E.R. have a lot of question marks around them right now, but they have a playoff tradition. Filthy McNasty is one of the most feared clutch bowlers in BoPo, and opposing teams just have to cross their fingers that Tom Richards isn’t going to unleash the fury. Hungus’ elbow is fine but if starts switching balls you know he’s in his own head. Cheddar has been on the DL off and on, but he plans to give it a go at gametime. Slow Roll is back on B.E.E.R. looking for another title belt.
I think it will be a battle royale, but B.E.E.R. has the playoff tradition and the playoff-proven vets.
Oh, if you see Lou Dawg rush in late flushed, sweating profusely and in green hotpants – he’s just coming from his hoop game and hoping to cement his legend as one of the top partybowlers of all time.