Saturday, September 26, 2015

5 Practice Tips before NXL World Cup

Alright so you guys want to prepare for NXL World Cup, but the layout isn't not released yet. So what should you guys be doing in practice? Here's 5 things I think you should be doing in your paintball practices leading up to world cup.

First thing you want to do. Get everyone on your team together. Go to a quiet spot and have a little team meeting. There shouldn't be any food, cell phones, guns, or anything else that is distracting.

You're going to take a half hour, maybe even an hour or two. However long it takes. You're going to talk, and figure out what has been working this year thus far, and what hasn't worked for you guys. You need to address all these situations as a team so everyone is on the exact same page.

You can't have great chemistry on the field, if everyone is thinking the team should be doing something different. You need to find the problems, and come up with solutions as a team.

Be honest. Be critical. If you've been seeing something happen all season that needs fixed. Right here is the chance to bring it up so you can fix it going into world cup. Don't pussy foot around it. Bring it up. And don't get butt hurt. You're on a team together. If someone thinks the lanes have sucked this year and you've been the one doing the majority of lanning. Swallow your pride, and just
say ok. And then get the entire team to work with you and do drills so you can improve the lanning. Maybe that's not even the best solution. Perhaps the better solution is to have someone else to lane, and sending you to the corner, and if that is what the team decides is the best solution. then that's what needs to happen. Now you go play the corner as best as you can. It's a team sport, get your team involved and figured stuff out.

Second thing you want to do in practice. Go back and work on the fundamentals. You've went all year playing, probably picked up some sloppy tendencies along the way. Get back to the fundamentals and come in strong to world cup.

Third thing. Work on communication. This is the perfect time to work on communication. The layout hasn't be released yet but you can still work on communication. Make sure everyone on the field always knows the kill counts and where bodies are. Get people communicating back and forth to make moves happen and shut the field down.

You want to Work on fundamentals and communcation now, so when the layout is released, you can focus more on developing and executing game plans.

Fourth thing. Go over everyone's gear on the team. Make sure the exterior loops on packs are tight and still holding pods well. Look at the condition of your pods. Check to make sure all hoppers and guns are functioning properly. Do you need a new lens. Make sure you have enough squeegees, pods, barrel covers, and microfibers for the team in the pits. You've been beating the crap out of your gear all season, make sure it is all in working order coming into world cup. Shouldn't be getting down hoppers or guns at the event.

5th thing. Take these practices seriously. At the start of every practice, set goals for the practice, and exceed them. Too many teams just go through the motions, they just play random points and only take it seriously once the layout is released. Take the time now to fix mistakes the team has had all season so the team can head into practices on the layout and focus on the tournament.

Read more Paintball Tips at Macedonian Athletics Sports Academy

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

New Eclipse Gun to use AA Batteries

I'm so glad to hear that Planet Eclipse is switching to AA batteries. I had a 9v charger and rechargeable 9vs for a couple years only because of my paintball guns. I don't have anything else that takes 9v batteries so after my 9v charger died, I never replaced it because I could find a 9v charger in any of the local stores. I'm sure I could of got one off the internet but I just never did, so I have been using disposable 9vs ever since. What sucks about 9vs is that they cost more, and some gas stations don't even carry 9vs. So when you run out, and need to go out and search for 9vs which can be hassle and a definite inconvenience because a lot of paintball fields are no where near an actual store that carries 9v batteries. Rechargeable AAs and the chargers are much easier to come by. Even the disposable AAs are much cheaper and almost every store and gas station carries AA batteries. I can't wait for my guns to incorporate this switch to AA batteries. With the high end loaders using AA batteries, now I just need to carry AA batteries in my gear bag for my guns and my loaders which is great.

Check the News Release of the Planet Eclipse CS1

"It's a valid question. When we sit down to brainstorm a new product we revisit all of the things that people complain about on our existing products and try to address those things wherever possible. The cost and life of 9V batteries is something that players have been complaining about for years and so this was one of the things that we chose to address. The choice of AAs rather than some other form factor was an obvious one as this is the battery used in all of the high end loaders." - Steve Monks, Planet Eclipse

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Being A Champion

I am a champion, as are you. Not because of the trophies and titles. But because of the obstacles that you overcome and the effort you exert. To find what it is to be your best and to aim to do it. Because you decide to, and recognize that it is your right, and your responsibility to do so. Encourage others, and continue to aim for great things. We are a champions.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

NXL Virginia Beach Open Layout Tips

This video covers the lanes of the National Xball League (NXL) 2015 Virginia Beach Open Layout. Need a better way to stop the snake push and in turn help yours? Check out this video brought to you by Macedonian Athletics Sports Academy.

So with how the lanes are on the NXL Virginia Beach Open Layout, you don't have a solid lane snake side either from the back center. Usually most layouts you'll have a clean lane to shoot before the god and the corner or even in front of the snake. But really with this NXL VBO Layout your solid lane is right after the first aztec.
Now you do actually have shots over the cake and pillars into that snake corner, but you don't have a clean shot before the god, because those pillars force your paint higher in the air to shoot over them,
so he's most likely just going to slide right in if he makes it passed that initial lane after the aztec.

Now some ways we can remedy that issue is if you come into the snake side cake or sit in the open a little bit, you get a solid lane directly before the snake. So if a team is constantly going
to snake off the break, you can shoot that. But if you don't have solid game play on this snake side,
and you're relying on that shot every point to hit that guy going in off the break. Your team is not going to win the NXL Virginia Beach Open, let's just be honest. That shot is nice to give the other team a little wake up call let them to know they're not going in right off the break every point. But you can't rely on this shot to take you to the finals, teams will just stop short and make you pay later.

The better option in my opinion on the NXL Virginia Beach Open layout, is either going up the middle to the X or going to the tall cake on the dorito side, you get a cross shot into the mini-races and you can catch him there.

You're going to want to lane right before the first dorito every point. If you're better at lanning, you're going to try and hit that corner lane as well all at once.
Depending on where you're sending people on this dorito side, shooting back at the guy lanning in the back center is a good shot off the break.
With these cakes here, I love to sit behind em, block myself out, and rain paint back at the back center. Or even dropping down pretty low and safe and hitting those cross shots.
Hope these tips for the National Xball League Virginia Beach Open layout helps your team accomplish your goals. If you have any questions please leave a comment.

Macedonian Athletics Sports Academy 

Friday, May 1, 2015

The Fight of The Century

Manny Pacquiao vs Floyd Mayweather Jr.

This is going to be an exciting, technical fight. And it's definitely going to be the fight of the Century. I can't wait to see these two go at it.

Manny Pacquiao's Boxing Style:
Manny uses a southpaw style of boxing. Which is generally regarded as the stronger style against the traditional style that Floyd uses. Pacquiao is able to easily pivot and square up to get power behind his punches directly onto the traditional style. He's shown it plenty of times his effectiveness to do this against his opponents. He loves to throw different combinations of punches then back off and turn his opponent and go at him again. He has strong hits, and doesn't let up.

The fact that Manny can last 12 rounds and he conditions for it. Unlike Floyd's other opponents, they seem to of not been able to last past 6 rounds. They would get significantly slower as the match went on. Manny can also take a punch pretty good. For that reason, his movement and his punching is going to be a big factor. Everyone else didn't move too much against Floyd, they would the first few rounds and they would throw a lot of punches and end up winning those rounds. Sure Floyd likes to play the pocket off the ropes but Manny is going to still try to make him turn and come off the ropes. Pacquiao definitely gets hit quite a bit too and people tend to land some good hits, but Manny is still always bouncing around and great on his feet the whole match. Floyd is known more for accuracy and speed and to not have the strongest hits, and Pacquiao has faced much harder hitters like Cotto who got some good hits on him. So being able to take punches and still having great energy just means Pacquiao is going to be going strong this whole match. Pacquiao also has strong hits especially when he is jumping in up close and using all of his weight. With his constant movement, he's going to be hard to predict and counter.

 Manny's weakness is that he jumps into a lot of his punches. He doesn't have the longest reach, especially compared to Floyd, and Manny jumps into his opponent and throws furries of punches. And that jumping in and commitment is going to be his weakness in this fight. He sees opening in the standard guard and comes off his southpaw, squares up, and comes in and attacks. The 4th match that he had against Marquez shown that weakness as he got knocked out. Although it took Marquez 4 different matches to finally learn Pacquiao's style and timing and was able to predict and anticipate his jump and was able to catch him and knocked him clean out.

Floyd Mayweather's Boxing Style:
Floyd uses the traditional stance, however his style is different. He keeps his hands up more in his guard than most traditional boxers do. He does do a great job keeping his hands up when he's coming into his opponent. When he gets defensive he boxes a lot like his father in keeping his left hand down to his side and his left shoulder lifted("rolled") up to protect his jaw. He's great in the pocket, and great with learning his opponent and finding the opportunities to strike. As he's learn his opponent and gets out of the pocket, he's great at recognizing, anticipating, moving, and taking advantage of mistakes by his opponent.

I think his father did a great job teaching Floyd when he was younger, and it definitely shows, he has the best intelligence and awareness in the game, and he has the best defense in boxing. He's really taken his father's style and perfected it.

Floyd's defense is the best in the sport and arguably the best boxing has ever seen. His also has arguably the best awareness and instinct in boxing right now. He's great at playing the pocket, countering. He keeps his hands raised higher when in the traditional stance. Great at reacting and counter punching. He throws very accurate and quick punches and scores a lot of points. You can't out score him in a 12 round match for that reason. Like Pacquiao he also comes in with great conditioning to easily last the full match. He's fast and moves a lot in the ring.

He doesn't have the power in his punches. He has great accuracy, but he just lacks the power to knock opponents out. It requires a lot of good hits over many rounds to knock opponents out. He also typically loses the scoring on the first rounds of fights when people come out swinging a lot at him. If a boxer is able to sustain that throughout the match, they will be able to outscore Floyd. I feel that not enough people attack Floyd's body either, they focus too much on trying to get to his jaw and Floyd can take a punch or two to the jaw and he protects it very well and that his bigger weakness is the body so when it comes to the later rounds where Floyd really shines, he doesn't have the energy that he usually has.

The Fight:
Floyd Mayweather Jr. is going to come out and try to feel out Manny Pacquiao and really move around a lot. Trying to not let Pacquiao hit him right away because Pacquiao is going to come out swinging like he always does. Pacquiao is going to try and turn Floyd a lot, but Floyd isn't going to throw sloppy jabs like the rest of his other opponents. And after a few rounds of that going back and forth, Floyd is going to let Pacquiao come to him and get up against the ropes and try to out play Pacquiao with his strong defense and counters. Floyd is going to shoulder roll and do the body shots with his right, and following with the left when Pacquiao tries to gets in close with his Southpaw stance and won't be able to turn Mayweather. Then after some rounds once Floyds feels Pacquiao starts to feel deflated with Floyd playing his strong defense, Mayweather is going to come out and start to take advantage of Pacquiao's tendency to open up a bit before he punches and take advantage of the better timing window now that Pacquiao is tired, and Mayweather is then going to start being able to land clean hits on Pacquiao. Pacquiao is still going to be strong though and keep swinging all match and scoring points on Floyd. Other than a few good counters from Floyd and his good defensive pocket play, Pacquiao is going to dictate the fight.

It's going to go to go the 12 round distance. And Pacquiao is going to manage to come out with the win on the score cards because he is going to win more rounds at the start and isn't going to get a lead that Floyd can't fight back from. Pacquiao is not going to get as tired as all of Floyd's other opponents have shown. Pacquiao will most likely win the first 3-4 rounds, Mayweather will come back and win the next 2 or 3 with his pocket play and good counters, and then they are going to go back and forth from there for the remaining rounds, but Mayweather is not going to be able to express his dominance as much to get a ruling for a win. Manny is still going to be moving and swinging at the later rounds and Pacquiao will come out the winner.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

The Passing of Time

This will be one of my shorter blogs because we are all given a length of time in this world. Most don't want to acknowledge that, or talk about this, but we are given only a certain amount of time. It's how we utilize that time that really matters. Please don't take things for granted, and do what you are ambitious about; because it's only a matter of time until it runs out and you can no longer do it.

The reason I bring this up is because a friend of mine has just passed away. He was a big inspiration and was a great influence for me and he's one of the reasons I started this blog. He helped me come to a realization about life, and that I shouldn't sit back and watch it go by. To speak out, and be upfront about things. To help others who need it, and not to be selfish. He was wise man, and a caring man. He influenced many people, and really left an impact on this world. To me, that's all a man can really ask for. And with that, I ask for you to be an impacting individual, like my friend Paul Richards. Speak out for the better. Be helpful and caring. Enjoy the time you have, love the people around you, and give it meaning.

I send my best regards in this blog and in my thoughts to a great man, Paul Richards. And I give my blessings to him and his family. Rest in peace.

And if you get the chance, I ask that you please read his blog,
And please give a prayer to him and his family. Thank you for the taking the time read this and acknowledging the passing of a good man. We need more like him in this world.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

National Paintball Shouldn't Exist

Why I think this and why I am bringing it up you may ask. Well the rumor has it that the NXL is buying the PSP. The NXL is owned by G.I. Sportz and the PSP is owned by Dye Paintball. There's a whole spew of conspiracies, and reasons why, etc. but that's just hear say for now. It's not so much the purchase I want to talk about, but I really just want to speak on National Paintball more as a whole. If you haven't read my previous blog, NXL Dropped The Pod, please do so as this is really a continuous of that.

Well the people in charge of the NXL, who also own the rights to Xball, want to do the Race-to format... Which is a dumb format for a National Event as I explained previously. The NXL, like the PSP, will continue to lose teams until they offer a better experience for the cost. Which they can't do with Race-to. And it got me to thinking, what's the purpose of national events? Do national events grow the sport? Are national events even the answer for the sport of paintball?

Does anyone really know the purpose of national events? The idea I have always been told is that it is supposed to be the best of the best going at it. However, is that really true? The PSP currently is the top league in the nation, but it has so many affiliate leagues that you can play and gain series points that go towards the PSP series. These affiliate leagues are pulling in around the same number of teams as the PSP is so they are giving out the same number of series points as well. On top of that, with them being significantly cheaper, a lot of good teams are sticking to playing the regional affiliate leagues over the national circuit. This severely takes away from teams playing against the best competition at the national level. So with that I say, what's the purpose of national events?

Do national events grow the sport? This is a huge topic in the paintball community. Especially after the huge drop of manufacturers and players years ago during the recession. A lot of players preach growing the sport to keep their passion alive. These leagues also preach growing the sport to keep the competition and sport alive and thriving. The manufacturers preach growing the sport in order to create a bigger market to sell to. And these same manufacturers are the ones that own the leagues. So, are the national leagues creating a bigger market for the manufacturers to sell to? Currently, I don't believe they do.

Don't believe me? Where is the NPPL? And if you look, the number of PSP teams have been lowering over the years. If it wasn't for the collapse of the NPPL and the PSP being able to absorb what teams the NPPL had left, the PSP wouldn't have had any teams left to lose and would probably be dead by now.

Regional events are getting as many divisional teams as national events because they can offer the same--if not better--experience for the cost. The regional events are more attractive than national events due to the experience/cost, which is why the National events have been trying to find venues where more people can drive to. If you look at the reasoning for events as of lately. The PSP moved their west coast event to Nashville, TN which is practically right in the middle of the USA. The NXL chose Cleveland for their first venue, their reasoning, "It's within 500miles of 43% of the population." This makes it much easier for teams to drive to and it helps lower the expense for teams.

Regional events have been shown that is what grows the sport. It's less expensive, and offers the same experience. It's shown so much, that the national events are trying to adopt a more regional feel with enabling more people to drive to their events like they can a regional event in an attempt to grow their attendance at the national events. People do not want to pay the price.

The sad thing is, national leagues right now just hinder the growth of the sport at the regional and local levels. The national events offer a poor experience to the players which actually turns players away from the sport. And if that poor experience is not enough, the cost to play national events is more than enough to hinder growth of the sport. The expense for national events destroys most teams' budgets to play in other leagues or to play at their local field as much afterwards. This negatively effects the local paintball scenes as less players are coming to the fields. It's creating a poor experience for players at the local fields trying to get into the sport with the lack of players there to play against.

But what does this all mean? It means there is no purpose for the national events. They do not grow the sport. Recreating the same tried and failed attempts, and continuing to have these national events is not the answer. Can national events serve a purpose, absolutely. But they need to be restructured. It needs to be something different. It can't involve taking away and destroying the regional and local paintball scene; it instead, needs to promote the growth of paintball around the local tournaments. That needs to be the purpose of the national league. Again, manufacturers preach the growth of the sport because that's their customers they sell to. They own the national leagues in effort to create a bigger market and grow the sport. But the league doesn't support where the growth happens, so it's counter-productive.

One of my solutions to this problem is simply to be like other major sports. There is usually a head league. Which is the professional league of that sport. They set the rules, and they set the standards for the sport. Then other leagues, either affiliated or not, base their rules and standards of their league off that professional league. The manufacturers who sponsor the professional league, use that league to create an image and use it as a marketing tool to get people interested in playing the sport. That professional league is attracting the new players, and those new players play at the local leagues, and those continue to grow at the local levels because of it. All those new players at the local leagues buy the manufacturers products that sponsor the professional league. And that's how the sport needs to grow for the manufacturers, for the leagues, and for the players.

The national league should have events that are just for the professional teams. And it should be promoted as a professional event so people want to come watch professional paintball. They can also have the webcast for people unable to attend and to continue to promote the sport. This with maybe an Open Amateur Class for Semi-pro/D1/D2 players trying to turn pro and get better by facing the best competition in the country. Those higher level teams can continue to compete all year at the professional events until the local scenes grow and catch up so these teams have competition regionally/locally and no longer have to play nationally.

But every one else should be playing strictly regional/local affiliate leagues all year to gain series points towards the national league. Then at the end of the season teams can attend a National Championships where all divisions will be played in a big championship event held by the National, Professional league.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

NXL Dropped The Pod

With the recent news of the return of the NXL and the rumors of their format. It looks to be that the NXL has dropped the ball, or is it paintball(s). Dropping the pod? However you want to say it, they did it. With the growing distaste, and frustration between players and the PSP. There was so much potential with the return of the NXL, and they're really wasting it.

The PSP has become quite known now for their constant and unnecessary changes they make every year. They make changes without consulting players or teams that currently play the game. Not only that, they knowingly make the changes after people have paid entry, booked their flights, and hotels so they can't withdraw from their decision to play the event after the changes. They never give any justifiable reason for the rule changes, or clear the air of questions and concerns. The players are getting sick of it. A great example of this is their showing the first event in Dallas where the number of teams were no more impressive than one of the regional events.

If you were to take away the constant rule changes, poor decision making, and shady treatment of players. The biggest problem for the PSP is their format for their tournament. And the NXL is adopting that over for the most part. Although, it said to be a little different, it's still going to be relatively close. If you were to look at the attendance of the PSP over the years, they're always losing team attendance. They got a spike of growth which was just from when the NPPL died off, and teams went to the PSP to play, but the teams do not continue to play tournament paintball at the PSP because the cost outweighs the experience they are given.

For thousands of dollars you're hardly even playing unless you're one of the two teams that makes it through the elimination rounds to make it to the finals. You'll be lucky if your team plays 22pts in prelims given games are interesting and go to 4-2 or 4-3 games in the short 12 minutes of game time allowed. Which it isn't too often that is the case. The pro teams get 20 minutes in their Race-To 7 matches and they tend to end around 4 or 5 points scored on a team if it's an interesting game.. They're able to actually blow the horn too in order to reset because they have points to play with. In Race-to 4, you don't get that opportunity because you never need to blow the horn until 2-3 points down and when time starts to dwindle down. Which you basically throw the game away at that point because the other team can easily hold you off for a minute or two left into the match.

As we all know, there are 5 players on the field for each team. However, since paintball is such a high cost you have to have a team of 8-10 to just afford it at a semi-reasonable cost. So your team may be lucky if your team plays 22pts in prelims given games are interesting. But if you're one of the 3-5 extra players on the team, the cost is so high you're still paying a thousand dollars to go and you might see play time in 5pts if your team is nice... That's why the regional series are doing well and the PSP is continually losing teams. Team play or not, no one wants to play thousands of dollars to sit and watch. And in Race-to 2, five man, you get 8-12 points in prelims. The rosters for Race-to 2 are usually 7 players to make it affordable. And with five man you get more time between points to rest, so if you're a sub, you might see maybe 2 or 3 points if your team is nice. No one wants to pay hundreds of dollars to play a couple of points. At the end of the day, with the cost to play time and experience, any format of Race-to is not worth traveling to a National event for.

I'm all for competition, I firmly believe in being the best. I don't believe in the, "although you lost, you tried your best and everyone is a winner so you get a cookie" mentality. But I am also realistic. There are going to be a number of teams who do not make it out of prelims, and those teams make up the majority of the tournament. Regardless if they're not good enough to win, they still need to have a good time. I don't mean a fun time, because losing isn't usually fun, but at least feel like it was worth the experience to even go and pay the money to play. The PSP's Race-To format doesn't offer that; so by the NXL adopting this format is just shooting itself in the foot at the start.

If the NXL chooses to do Race-To, they will gain teams from the PSP for the shear fact that the PSP is ran ridiculously. But just like the PSP, they're going to continue to get teams that play then quit because the playing experience totally freaking blows. And the experience doesn't outweigh the cost burden over regional event offering the same experience.

There are so many things that need to be changed from top to bottom to offer a better experience. But the best place to start for Nationals events should be to make the format Xball and regional affiliates should keep the Race-To format. Perhaps, they could have affiliates offer only an open class that is strictly Xball at regional events and would give points towards the National series. This would give people a better experience at National events where the competition and cost is at its highest. It also gives the regional events a way to keep growing the sport and still offer a good experience at a cheaper price. By this method, national events would have something unique, be used as a great marketing tool for the series and tournament paintball, and offer a better experience for the cost. All while, the regional events would still serve the purpose of growing the sport, and feeding the National series.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The Ancient Macedonian Pre-Workout

I'm going to share a secret with every one. Sunflower seeds... It's the Ancient Macedonian "pre-workout and intra-workout" of choice. Then just eat a nice piece of meat post-workout.. And watch as the gains commence!

I see so many people downing these chemical filled pre-workouts and intra-workout drinks in the gym. All they mostly are is just caffeine and then they're filled with other bunk junk and fillers. You should only be drinking water. And if you want, eating sunflower seeds. Sunflower seeds do not fill up your stomach before or during a workout so they are nice to consume, you can even have them throughout the day, and they give so many benefits it's ridiculous.

You can't walk the streets of Macedonia or Greece without seeing sunflower seeds for sale. And not because they are tasty, ice-cream is tasty. No, because they've always been regarded as a very beneficial for centuries, and with good reason.

As you're working out you're sweating, and breaking down the muscles fibers and molecules in your body. Sunflower seeds contain poly-phenol compounds such as chlorogenic acid, quinic acid, and caffeic acids. These compounds are natural anti-oxidants, which help remove harmful oxidant molecules from the body.

Sunflower seeds are a very rich source of vitamin E; contain about 35.17 g per100 g (about 234% of RDA). Vitamin E is a powerful lipid soluble antioxidant, required for maintaining the integrity of cell membrane of mucus membranes and skin by protecting it from harmful oxygen-free radicals.

Sunflower seeds are one of the finest sources of B-complex vitamins. About 8.35 mg or 52% of daily-required levels of niacin is provided by just 100 g of seeds. Niacin helps reduce LDL-cholesterol levels in the blood. In addition, it enhances GABA(γ-Aminobutyric acid, the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter in the mammalian central nervous system) activity inside the brain, which in turn helps reduce anxiety and neurosis. GABA is also directly responsible for the regulation of muscle tone. So you're going to get that strong focus and increased mind to muscle connection that you need when working out to get better results.

The seeds are incredibly rich sources of many essential minerals. Calcium, iron, manganese, zinc, magnesium, selenium, and copper are especially concentrated in sunflower seeds. Many of these minerals play a vital role in bone mineralization, red blood cell production, enzyme secretion, hormone production, as well as in the regulation of cardiac and skeletal muscle activities. In layman's terms, they help make sure your bones stay healthy. Help you get a better pump of blood to your muscles along with more enzymes to feed your muscles, and a better hormone production to increase a natural growth response.

So get rid of the bunk pre-workouts and the intra-workouts that are filled with unnecessary chemicals. Don't fall to marketing schemes of the supplement industry. Have some sunflower seeds and water. And blast those workouts as hard as you can. And let's get results!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

National Football League Super Bowl XLIX

First Impression:

The Seattle Seahawks are going to take on the New England Patriots for the National Football League's 49th Super Bowl Game. This is going to be an exciting game, especially after the respective conference championship games. The Seahawks had a great comeback victory over the Packers in the NFC championship game. And then the Patriots just demolished the Colts in the AFC championship game. With the Packers playing a similar game to the Patriots, I expect the game score to be more similar to the Seahawks and Packers game than the blowout the Patriots had vs the Colts. Seahawks had a successful fake field goal and got a lucky bounce off the face with their onside kick, I wouldn't imagine that will happen in this game. They're going to have to come in better prepared against the Patriots.

The Run Game:

The Seahawks will bring the strongest run game through Marshawn Lynch. Guys at 280 carries and 1300+ yards rushing with 13TDs. This guy brings the heat right now running the ball in the NFL. Russell Wilson will also get plenty of carries from roll outs and broken plays. He's basically put up more numbers alone than the Patriots RBs. I'm a strong believer in the run game to win games. It is such a vital aspect that so many teams don't use appropriately in the NFL.

The Patriots run game isn't nearly what Seattle's is, but how can you expect it to be when you have Tom Brady to effectively throw the ball almost every play. Although they don't run it as often as the Seahawks, the few plays they do run, they get effect yards and manage to bring the heat off Tom Brady. Which is all they really need to do.

I don't really view the Patriots run game as handing it off to the RBs. That's just one dynamic of their run game. Rob Gronkowski is the Patriots real "running back". Except, rather than starting behind the QB receiving a hand-off, he just starts outside with a pass. It's a different dynamic, but just as effective. When you're QB can throw the ball just as reliably as he can hand it off, why not set your running back out to the side, with 1 on 1 coverage in the open beyond the defense line and potentially the linebackers. It make sense, and as you can see, is certainly effective. He has 1124 yards with 82 receptions and 12 TDs... Just one touchdown shy of Marshawn Lynch, and almost as many yards with a quarter of the touches.

And I know people will be like yeah, he's a good TE... I'm sorry, but they don't play him just like a TE, he's taken on their role of the running back. He's their rock they go to. Just like a RB would be. The Patriots use a different dynamic with their players which is why they succeed so much more than every other team. Other teams have tried to mimic this, but they do not do it well because they just view it as a good TE to throw the ball to on their passing plays, not as him being their RB and giving him the ball like their RB to open up opportunities for their WRs.

Throwing The Ball:

As I was saying earlier for the Patriots. They use Gronkowski as their RB, giving him the ball to open up opportunities for their WRs. Having Tom Brady with the ball in hand then passing it to Gronkowski they think he's just throwing the ball on a pass play to their good TE. When in reality, it technically never was a general pass play. Other teams don't grasp this, so in their designed pass defense, they just guard the Patriots TE, thinking he's a good TE rather than treating him as the RB, opening up the WRs and vice versa. Then the Patriots actually use their RBs to make sure the other team's defense has to dedicate man power to them too when they aren't the threat. This makes it easy to look like Tom Brady picks apart the defense, when in reality, the defense picks their self apart using defensive passing schemes against the Patriots dynamic "run" game.

Once Gronkowski and the RBs effectively opens up the field for the WRs, Edelman is there go to playmaker. And every WRs is averaging 10 yards a pass. Not too bad when you're moving the chains potentially every completed pass. Edelman is acting as one of the best receivers in the league right now, expect a big play out of him during the super bowl.

Seahawks passing game is strong as well. Russell Wilson puts up impressive numbers because the run game takes the heat off his arm. The coach does a good job at setting up good plays for him. He doesn't sit in the pocket nearly as much as Tom Brady but when he does, he does it just fine, and he has the ability to roll out and toss a good pass. Their throw game compliments the run game very well. Both are balanced and equal threats. Without all the thrills of huge WR play makers. They get the job done and they are sporting a solid championship offense right now.


The Patriots need to stop the run game. They did an okay job against Luck and the Colt's passing game which I would argue is better than the Seahawk's. Sure the Colts dropped a lot of passes that were down the field, but other than that, they still held Luck off. But the Patriots need to hold Lynch and Wilson to as few yards as possible to win this game. Lynch getting away with only a couple big carriers could seriously turn the tide of the game. They have to clog holes and stop Lynch at the line of scrimmage, and get the turnovers like the Packers did.

Seattle needs to come in prepared for a way to deal with Gronkowski and treat him as the Patriots will Lynch. They need to watch for Edelman as well. Then LaFell. These are their big 3. They need to play close and rough these 3 up off the line. Disrupt the timing and routes for Brady as much as possible and give more time for the linemen to pressure Brady and force him out of the pocket getting hit and tired from running.

Blitzing a lot of players against Brady isn't the key. If they do blitz, the purpose shouldn't be to sack Brady, obviously that's great if they do, but make him roll out and throw a pass on the move and go for a turnover. Preferably let the Patriots throw the flat to the RB, and then just collapse to keep the gains minimal. Protect the middle from the run, and have a strategy against Gronkowski, and cover the WRs until your linemen get to Brady.

Sherman is going to need to come in healthy and step up and cover Edelman the entire game and get assistance from the safety to keep him from making a big play. The Patriots are going to score points, there's no doubt about that. No one's defense is actually setup to fight the Patriots dynamic offense and keep them from getting first downs. But attempt to keep the points minimal, getting incomplete passes, and try to get turnovers. And then run the clock and keep the ball and make successful drives.


Regardless of the strong Seahawks defense, the Patriots will still throw the ball successfully. The Patriots run game will have a couple good runs in some key spots of the game. The Seahawks will keep up with them through their run game that the Patriots will struggle to stop it. However, the Patriots are going to manage to shut down the Seattle offense on third downs and have successful drives to put them over the Seahawks.


Patriots 38 - 28 Seattle
MVP: Tom Brady

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Kalashnikov USA

The Russian firearm manufacturer finally making a plant here in the United States of America. The factory is said to be in Bristol, PA right outside of Philadelphia.

Many of you reading this may think. Why is a Russian company coming into the United States and making guns. Guns they made for the Soviet Union... I have nothing wrong with a company making a product to serve to a government, or a consumer. It stimulates the economy. It's more so going to now stimulate our economy. While many companies leave our country, one is coming here to manufacturer. With all the restrictions on importation of firearms, and the ban on importation from Russia caused the manufacturer to move it's plant here. Maybe that goes with something to say about how our government should be about our important laws as more and more jobs are leaving the country... Regardless, this is big news for firearms enthusiasts.

The Kalashnikov AK-47 is one of the most known guns in the entire world, and rightfully so. It's incredibly reliable. The "new" Kalashnikov firearms made in the USA will be held into comparison to the originals built out of Russia, but I believe they will be made quite identical and perform excellently. With the manufacturer being in the states, and no longer having to deal with restrictions on importation, will the quality increase more? And the question remains, how good will their service be? Will our own government now issue more AKs to our military?

The performance is the big question. Everyone here in the states knows how an AR-15, also known as an M4, performs. With more availability to the different Kalashnikovs and AK-47 variants. I am excited to see if they become more popular than the AR-15. Will we see more Kalashnikovs around the firing ranges? Will they even appear more, and out perform at the competitions?

College Football Playoff 2015 National Championship Game

First Impression:

This is going to be a very interesting and fun National Championship game to watch. As the Ohio State University Buckeyes go against the University of Oregon Ducks. Both teams have a great offense. Both have good run games as well as an efficient passing game. I believe this game is going to be determined by the defense of each team. 

The Run Game:
My home team, the Ohio State University Buckeyes will bring a strong run game through their star running back, Ezekiel Elliot. Their QB Cardale Jones is however going to get more rushes than Elliot. At 5'6 250lbs. He's a monster for a QB. I expect plenty of designed runs for him and especially on broken plays.

The Oregon Ducks have a mean run game though too. They have a couple options in the back field. Their quick offense really tires a defense down and I feel their run game will only get more effective as the game goes on.

Throwing The Ball:

Oregon's specialty. When you're the team coming into the game with the heisman trophy winner, Marcus Mariota, how could you not say this is their strength. They rely on him making good decisions. They run a quick offense and they make these quick drives down the field in under 3mins because he makes completions down field. I expect a big game out of him just like the rest of his games. High completion rate, no interceptions, and moving the chains quick.

As for the Buckeyes. After their injuries in the QB position. Cardale Jones is no joke of a QB. Guys a monster, and has a rocket of an arm since he's so big. He's going to hand it off to Elliot, and run it himself a lot. But I believe this game he's going to throw the ball more. Designed numbers throws, to take pressure off the run and then throwing the deep ball. Really force Oregon to play a 3 stage defense and spread them thin. He's going to surprise a lot of people. If Oregon comes in underestimating Ohio's QB, and focus too much on Elliot, they're going to regret it. He's going to put up impressive numbers running and throwing.


If the Ducks can shut down the run game, or at least maintain to manage it's impact, it's going to go a long ways in this game for the Ducks. They allowed an average of 6.8 yards per carry against Florida State. There's no doubt in my mind if they can't keep it under control, Elliot and even Jones will run all game and put up points. Which I am sure Ohio State Coach, Urban Meyer, has no problem with. Oregon's defense needs to control Ohio's run game, and watch for the deep ball. Let Jones make those short to medium throws and try to get an interception off a potentially inaccurate/inexperienced QB. Oregon's defensive strength is turnovers. Don't give up big yards, and fight for turnovers to get the ball back into the hands of Mariota.

The more Ohio State can burn the clock, and keep control of the ball, the better. Getting more time for their Defense to rest against the quick Oregon Offense and the less amount of time and opportunities Duck's QB, Mariota, has to make plays happen and move the chains, the better for this Ohio State team. Because where the Ducks have shined is when their defense can get turnovers and allow their heisman trophy winner to get his hands on the ball and put up points.


Oregon is going to have effective drives against Ohio State. Tiring out Ohio State's defense and Mariota is going to pick the defense apart. But Ohio State's defense is going to manage to shut down Oregon's offense on a couple drives. And then their run game, and throwing are going to be too much. And beat Oregon with their physical offense and RB/QB combination.


Ohio State 41 - 34 Oregon
MVP: Cardale Jones.

Originally wrote: Monday, January 12, 2015
Author: Kiril Grozdanovski