B2 EAST ODDS
#1 seeded Mullets (9:5) Jay Sar and Ethan Chang dominate almost every backcourt they see, but is there middle strong enough to defend their title this year? Johnny Drama himself Mike D, Dan OíC and the rest of the Saugus crowd will do their best to keep the B2 title right where it belongs ñ in the trophy case at Prince Pizza on Route 1. Unless Mike D moved it to the Cabaret in Saugus, in which case I know nothing about that.
#2 seeded Cha-Ching (5-1) The loss of Scott Wentworth will hurt this team, but Bryce Gibson will need to step up as he has the past few weeks and really take over this teamís offense. Mike Kuzdeva will continue to do it all, but Gibsonís shooting and their intensity level will be the key to this teamsí playoff success. Colin Farrell has a new movie out, so that should provide some motivation for these guys.
#3 seeded Drago (9:2) The CRFC media darling Drago squad should ride the back of Josh ìMVî Piekarski (soon to be re-nicknamed ìLarry Legendî) deep into the playoffs. With a semifinal match-up with arch rival Cha-Ching looming, Drago could get a title in their very first CRFC season. And if they do, CRFC should really think about hanging a life-size banner of Piekarski in the gym, like they had for Drago in Rocky IV.
#4 seeded Serenity Now (7-1) The loss of BK Bill Kenney will affect last seasonís finalists and that is why I put their chances slightly below Milleniumís. One thing is guaranteed though ñ ìThe Good Kingî Adam Kneeland will have a game plan and his merry men will play an intense, hard fought game. But can this intensity (and the Bigginsí boys frames) translate into a title? If not, these guys will have plenty of time to sell computers during the off-season.
#5 seeded Millenium (6-1) Despite this teamís deep hatred for me, I still respect their play and hereby give them the dark horse tag to win it all. So if you have a couple extra bucks lying around to spare, you may as well throw it on Millenium. ìMr. Fantasy Statî Fred Bermont has been doing it all, including taking the time to explain the intricacies of the rulebook, and with Huestis and Doyle pounding their way through the middle like thoroughbreds, this team can be dangerous if they get on a roll.
#6 seeded Genzyme (10-1) Mike Kmiec playing on one knee is still better than most players at CRFC, but with Keith Manning moving to Hotlanta, Greg Miller busy working out regression models and no sign of Mark Allyn or Bob Muse, this team may need some supplemental help to get by the 1st round. But they do work at a drug company, so anything is possible.
#7 seeded Ripcord (15-1) There is some value here as the #7 seed has longer odds than the #8 seed, but I always thought that ìvalueî argument in betting is bogus. A good price on something you donít want isnít a good price. This may be locker room posting material for Ian, but I am much more excited about the rumor that he signed the other CRFC Ian to a Ripcord contract next season. The Iceman and Tosti on the same squad? That is some serious star power and if nothing else, this move will put a$$es in the seats!
#8 seeded Archemix (12-1) Archemix should give the Mullets a pretty good scare with Boomer and Ankit firing away in the backcourt and Scott Lewis commanding presence in the middle, but in the end they may not have the firepower to take the mighty Mullets down. Then again, almost my entire NCAA Basketball Southwest bracket was wrong, so what do I know anyway.
B2 WEST ODDS
#1 seeded BALCO (5:2) ñ The bullies of the West who havenít got much of a challenge this season, but they will need to step up the intensity as the CRFC playoffs are always full of surprises. Gill and OíBrienís boys are clearly the talent of the league, but talent doesnít always win championships – just ask the Portland Trailblazers. The last game of the season was a much needed test for them, so letís see if they can carry that into the playoffs.
#2 seeded B Squad (9:2) ñ Steve Hortonís Wolverine pre-season #1 squad will need to be more consistent in these playoffs as there is no room for error. A looming semifinal match-up with Wheelers may look tasty to the fans, but donít look too fast by Biogen as they were beaten by them convincingly in the regular season. It should be a very interesting opening round game for the B Squad.
#3 seeded Wheelers (5-1) ñ The Jennings boys backcourt is by far the class of the league, but will it be enough to overcome the lack of size in the paint? Somewhere Sean Rahim is reading this and yelling ìWait, I am a big man with over 10 rebounds a game!!!î
#4 seeded Get Shorty (4-1) ñ Thatís right, I got Get Shorty as my dark horse pick here so if you have a few extra dollars, you may as well throw it down on these guys. Theyíll need to beat the Expos in the 1st round without their big man (and possible MVP of the league) Brandon Rodeur, but if they do, they have a very good shot at this title with Kerriganís scoring punch.
#5 seeded Expos (6-1) ñ The playoffs are always a time for superstars and big personalities to shine, and Broadway Joe Andrade is ready to do just that. His sidekick Brian Gowdy has been playing well all season to compliment him, but theyíll need a great game from the rest of the guys to get by Get Shorty in the 1st round.
#6 seeded ALS-TDF (9-1) ñ A very intriguing team at #6 as Shaq is always a threat to the opposing squad, especially a team like the Wheelers with no big inside presence. Myron has added some much needed point guard skills and offense, so this game could be closer than it would appear on paper.
#7 seeded Biogen (8-1) ñ My old employer is a great group of guys who have improved every week as a team. Can they upset the B Squad in the playoffs as they did during the regular season? If I had to pick an upset special, this would be it. Stay tuned.
#8 seeded Even More Cowbell (12-1) ñ Even a full squad may not be enough to up-end the #1 seeded BALCO squad, but Godfrey has won plenty of titles in this league when nobody thought he could, so while itís a long shot, we do have precedent.