. With an ocean of new statistical information available, the NBA could be on the verge of understanding the value of every single movement on the court.
posted by antonymous
on Feb 8, 2014 -
The Year of the Crush: How the Radically Unfair Candy Crush Saga Took Over Our Lives
We are clearly drawn to structured entanglements with chance. We use rules and money to define the stakes, and we use cards or dice or candies not as generators but as channelers — mediums — of the chance we believe is already out there, secretly running the show. Despite whatever other beliefs we have about fate or God or a deterministic universe, we often act as if luck is quite real in our daily lives. Candy Crush Saga has capitalized on this to become the mobile game of the year. Not the best, nor the worst, but the mobile game that dominated the charts, that succeeded at free-to-play in a way that will be studied for years, that penetrated the wider culture and came to stand in for all of addictive, time-wasting mobile gaming in 2013. And yet Candy Crush is not simply game of the year in the way that Stalin was once Time’s Person of the Year. It’s a genuinely compelling game that fully commits to radical unfairness. In fact, this is the primary source of its appeal.
posted by Room 641-A
on Dec 25, 2013 -
A 30 for 30
short tells the story of the husband and wife team who created MLB's schedule every year for two decades, using only pencil and paper.
posted by Bulgaroktonos
on Nov 6, 2013 -
Grantland visits the set of Eastbound & Down on the eve of its fourth (and final) season.
"The canon of post–Tony Soprano TV antiheroes is well established with your Walter Whites and your Don Drapers. Now, with Eastbound & Down sailing into the sunset, there is Kenny Powers. He was a crass, craven, and mean-spirited buffoon — and he was our buffoon. As he fumbled, fought, and fucked — his flabby arms protruding out of cutoffs, jorts hanging just so — he carried the mantle of the Ugly American. But this was neither a tribute nor a judgment. It was a love letter to this particular American way."
posted by porn in the woods
on Sep 28, 2013 -
"Once upon a time, playing a GTA game was like sitting next to your offensive Republican uncle at Christmas dinner. He was definitely a dick but also smart and interesting, and his heart was fundamentally in the right place. These days Uncle GTA is a billionaire with an unchanged shtick, and he seems a hell of a lot more mean-spirited than before."
—A letter to Niko Bellic about Grand Theft Auto V
posted by Atom Eyes
on Sep 26, 2013 -
A Week With Action Bronson
'A highly stoned, deeply weird, very food-obsessed three days on the road with 300-pound Albanian American rapper Action Bronson' (SLGrantland)
posted by box
on Aug 29, 2013 -
It's amazing, isn't it? Just when you think this photo shoot has peaked — that Donovan's inert lower lip or Mathis's oddly bendy face have set an unsurpassable standard — it finds a way to top itself, in this case by dressing a hulking, be-dreadlocked defensive midfielder in Stormtrooper underleggings and a miniaturized I Love Lucy housedress and convincing him to make unhurried love to a set of stadium bleachers. If "The Boys of Soccer" were Maradona, this would be his England game. Grantland investigates the greatest sports photoshoot of all time
posted by Ghostride The Whip
on Aug 9, 2013 -
Grantland checks in with 1980s megastar Huey Lewis
, who is "hard at play," still relentlessly touring at the age of 62.
After tonight's concert, the band will shower, the crew will load out, and Lewis's 25-person caravan (which he refers to as his "small business") will hop back on their buses and drive 403 miles to Anderson, Indiana, for tomorrow night's gig at a horse track and casino. In the next seven days, Lewis will play five shows in places like Paducah, Kentucky, and Quapaw, Oklahoma, along with bigger cities like Dallas and Cincinnati. Even with the gaudy 1980s sales statistics, Huey Lewis and the News has the work ethic of a 2010s indie band.
posted by porn in the woods
on Jul 7, 2013 -
There was no way to anticipate that the reliably malfunction-free Beyoncé arriving in New Orleans for her turn at immortality would be a vulnerable one. At the presidential inauguration ceremony last month, she sang the national anthem
over a prerecorded vocal track
, leading to a minor scandal
, putting her on the defensive
. Beyoncé, bionic, isn’t used to having her reputation impugned. Vulnerability is not her bag.
She is, though, up to the challenge — in this case, the conundrum of how to make her Super Bowl XLVII halftime show
, which she had been planning for months, not only a spectacle in its own right, but also a conclusion to the messy affair. [more inside]
posted by DynamiteToast
on Feb 5, 2013 -
Grantland's Steven Hyden
writes the winner's history of rock and roll, in four parts (so far), and charts the death of rock music as a major pop-cultural force in the 21st century by looking at some (not necessarily well-loved) bands that helped to transform it into a Big Business: Led Zeppelin
, Bon Jovi
(and coming up in the next installment, Metallica). Rock isn't dead
, by any means. But for better or worse, it ain't what it used to be.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken
on Jan 31, 2013 -
Downton Abbey returns to American TV screens this Sunday. Since many Americans have become fascinated with the intricate social dances featured in the English drama/soap, Grantland feels there's an opportunity to provide them a lesson about the equally intricate plot machinations associated with the English Premier League. I give you the "English Premier League to Downton Abbey plot converter." [more inside]
posted by modernnomad
on Jan 4, 2013 -
"This year, two monumental genres with decidedly global pedigrees arrived on our shores and attempted to crack the American pop code, with one enjoying far more decisive success than the other...One of those is definitely sexier and zeitgeistier than the other, but that doesn't always result in sustained cultural relevance."
K-Pop, EDM, and Baby Brosteps Toward a More Global Pop Landscape
posted by mannequito
on Dec 18, 2012 -
'By most accounts, Bill Walton stands well over seven feet tall. But during his NBA career, Walton always insisted that he was 6'11" because he didn't want to be considered a freak. When I read that fun fact in David Halberstam's The Breaks of the Game, it hit a chord. I've been doing the exact same thing as Walton for my entire adult life. I'm not as tall as Walton. I'm not even one of the less-than-70 seven-footers in my age bracket in the U.S. But I'm close. Another quarter-inch, and I'd pass the seven-foot barrier. But anytime anyone asks my height, I say that I'm 6'11". I don't mention the extra three quarters of an inch. People don't need to know about that.
In any case, I'm still pretty fucking tall. And being pretty fucking tall is a weird thing to wrap your head around.' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Aug 17, 2012 -
of rumors and frustration, it appears that Dwight Howard has been traded
to the Los Angeles Lakers in a four-team trade. Here
is Bill Simmons rapid reaction.
posted by Cloud King
on Aug 10, 2012 -
Terrell Owens's Darkest Days
'Since signing with the Allen Wranglers, Terrell Owens hasn't exactly been excited to talk to reporters. Back in his Philadelphia days, in the prime of his career, he used to hold press conferences all the time, sometimes in his own driveway. He couldn't wait to be on camera. He would tell reporters what questions to ask. He never shied away from a microphone: not in a locker room, not in a studio, and certainly not on his own reality show. But now that he's been relegated to the lowest rung of professional football, with no team in the NFL even interested in watching him work out, Owens hasn't been so loquacious. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Jun 24, 2012 -
Carles of Hipster Runoff discusses the relationship between mediocre quarterbacks and office jobs
The most intense forms of competition, stress, conflict, and insecurity that most of us will ever feel take place at work. We embrace mediocrity as a safety net to alleviate our minds from these uncomfortable thoughts, and hide from the idea of heightened accountability and expectations. Instead, we choose to live vicariously through other people we don't know who are actually 'special.' Athletes, technological entrepreneurs, and other people who are recognized for being legitimately 'gifted and talented' serve as our daily inspirations and escapes. While society tends to praise greatness and unique achievement, the public ceremony of 'exposing' mediocrity provides us with the opportunity for humor and hyperbole that inspires a dark breed of empathy and fan interest.
posted by Copronymus
on Jan 9, 2012 -
Chuck Klosterman breaks down
Edgar Winter Group's 1973 Old Grey Whistle Test performance of Frankenstein. Unlike zzazazz's previous post
, there is no bonus, because "Edgar Winter's finest nine minutes"
is its own crazy good reward.
posted by davejay
on Jul 27, 2011 -
Chuck Klosterman breaks down
Led Zeppelin's 1979 Knebworth Festival performance of In the Evening. Bonus: Led Zeppelin when they were crazy good
posted by zzazazz
on Jun 29, 2011 -
"Internationally, the league has never been stronger: It's the only American sports league that attracts stars from every corner of the world. Digitally, the league has been light years ahead of everyone else, embracing the revolution and staying ahead of the curve with social media and video content. It's also spent the past two decades carefully (and successfully) selling mostly black players to a mostly white audience, an ongoing conundrum that nearly submarined the league in the late-'70s and early-'80s. Throw in a killer 2011 Finals and everything looks fantastic on paper … except for the part that the league is losing money." - Bill Simmons analyzes the NBA labor dispute
for his new website, Grantland
posted by beisny
on Jun 12, 2011 -