The Results, 11/30/2013 + The Matchups 12/1/2013 + Some Thoughts on My Alma Mater

UCLA at USC.

UCLA at USC. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Before I delve into the final days of fantasy basketball between the Derrick Rosie O’Donnells and Rhymes With Antetokounpo, a couple notes:

1. Happy December, everybody! This year sure has flown by, hasn’t it? Then again, I suppose you could say the same thing every year if you wanted to.

2. More importantly, GO BRUINS!!!! WE RUN LA!!!!

In case any of you missed it, UCLA, my alma mater, didn’t just beat $outhern Cal at the LA Coliseum for the first time since 1997; we HANDLED $C on their home turf.

HANDLED.

The 35-14 margin marked the most lopsided victory in the Bruins’ favor in the rivalry since 1970, back when the two LA schools, separated by just 10 miles, still shared the Coliseum as their home stadium. UCLA started playing its home games at the Rose Bowl in 1982.

I was fortunate enough to be in the stands at the game, braving the elements of Trojan fandom to cheer on my Bruins. A big thanks to my parents, who were kind enough to pick up the tab for my nosebleeds as my Hanukkah gift for the year.

I could go on and on about the game, but I’ll try not to spend TOO much more space on this topic. Suffice it to say, I’m still getting used to the idea of UCLA having the upper hand in this rivalry. We hadn’t beaten $C in back-to-back years since 1998, three years before my first taste of UCLA football in person and long before I first set foot on the Westwood campus as an undergrad. I’ll be pinching myself for a while.

And not without reason. Just as I was lucky to be in the stands for last year’s beatdown and for the glorious 13-9 upset in 2006, so, too, did I sit through the five drubbings between 2007 and 2011, including the 50-0 debacle that ultimately precipitated Rick Neuheisel‘s ouster and the arrival of Jim Mora.

But that’s sports fandom for you, isn’t it? You cast your lot with a bunch of dudes (or dudettes) who play a game, you pull for said bunch to win every time out, you’re happy when they win and you’re disappointed when they lose. The frequency of either result (positive or negative) impacts how you view each subsequent one, with long, painful droughts giving way to the sweetest victories of all.

All of which means even more when your ties to the team are borne not of random affiliation, but of your own free will, volition and dedication to an institution of higher learning. Go Bruins.

Amen.

Now, on to basketball…

The Derrick Rosie O’Donnells

Screen Shot 2013-12-01 at 10.47.24 AM

Rhymes With Antetokounpo

Screen Shot 2013-12-01 at 10.47.32 AM

Matchup Scoreboard

Screen Shot 2013-12-01 at 10.47.08 AM

ANALYSIS

After six days of fantasy basketball, I somehow am still even on the cards with Joel, despite the absence of Paul Pierce from the Brooklyn Nets‘ one-point win over the Memphis Grizzlies. Thankfully, Goran Dragic (24 points) hasn’t seen his scoring tear interrupted by Eric Bledsoe’s return to the lineup for the Phoenix Suns.

The question is: will my positive progress this week hold up on Sunday?

The Derrick Rosie O’Donnells

Screen Shot 2013-12-01 at 10.46.59 AM

Rhymes With Antetokounpo

Screen Shot 2013-12-01 at 10.46.32 AM

ANALYSIS

The answer: probably not.

This could be a last-day wipeout in Joel’s favor, unless Serge Ibaka has THE GAME OF HIS FRICKIN’ LIFE during the Oklahoma City Thunder‘s tangle with the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight.

I’m outnumbered, outgunned and most likely out of luck. Let’s hope my D-RODs are able to fend off the onslaught due from Rhymes With Antetokounpo.

I have my doubts, but I also have blind faith and belief in my team. Will that be enough? We’ll find out tonight…

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