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Around the Cooler 6/22/14: Stress Fracture

M-RR-Nickelback-480i60_480x270Here’s what we’re talking about:

  • Are the Eagles a better roster than last season
  • We have our first real guest on the show to talk Sixers!
  • The World Cup and Ryan Howard’s interest in Nickelback.

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More on the World Cup! People Are Watching!

soccerThe US Mens game against Ghana has reportedly generated over 11 million viewers for ESPN on Monday night. If you consider the online viewership, streaming, and DVR recordings I’ve seen numbers as high as 16 million out there. It’s another sign that soccer is truly on the rise in America and it’s nice because I now have something to tangibly throw into Ray’s and Turtle’s face on the podcast when they sip the Haterade.

So which cities provided the most viewership? They were, in order: Washington DC, New York, Hartford-New Haven, Boston, Columbus, Baltimore, Providence, Orlando, San Francisco, and Norfolk.

Sadly, no Philadelphia on the list. We’ll have to step it up on Sunday against Portugal because while our Union may stink, the Union as a whole is on the rise.

US Has a Legitimate Shot at Passing Group Stage


The US with a huge last-minute win over Ghana

LeBron James recently said that winning a championship two out of four times isn’t bad. For the US Mens National Team, they have a nearly two in three chance of advancing in the World Cup.

Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight breaks it down:

he United States may or may not have played the better football in Monday’s match against Ghana. But it came away with three huge points. That, coupled with Germany’s 4-0 thrashing of Portugal, makes the U.S. slight favorites to advance to the knockout stage. FiveThirtyEight’s World Cup predictions now give the United States a 63 percent chance of advancing, up from 33 percent on Monday morning.

To see a full breakdown of the scenarios go and check out the article here! The USMNT plays Portugal on Sunday at 6pm.


Landon Donvan and the Slumbering Giant

landon donovanLandon Donovan is not going to be on team USA for the upcoming go at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, which is shame. I find Landon Donovnan to be a truly fascinating figure in American soccer due to both his personal achievements and his place in time.

As a player, he’s the perfect fit for American lore. At 5’8, 155 pounds he’s been the undersized hard-working player that electrified fans on a global scale with last minute heroics and dazzling passes. He did an admirable job over the years as he helped an average US squad win four CONCACAF titles and a berth out of the group stage in the 2010 World Cup.

Adding to Donovan’s mystique is the success that he’s had in the MLS. In 14 MLS seasons with the San Jose Earthquakes and the LA Galaxy Dononvan has played in 310 games, scored 134 goals, and 119 assists. He’s played in 13 straight MLS All-Star games, been named to the MLS All-Time Top IX and is considered the greatest American player of all time.

However, Donovan has been a big fish in a small pond. Despite the records and accolades Donovan never truly stacked up to world-class competition. He has a total of 51 appearances in European leagues with 28 coming from his stint with Bayer Leverkusen in 1999-2004. After that, he had short and unproductive stints with Bayern Munich and Everton. Given the state of American soccer, it’s quite fitting.

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