Friday, January 18, 2019

Picks of the Dragon: Who to Pick in Sunday's NFL Playoff Games

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 4:27 PM

Tyler Vondrak, a.k.a. The Dragon - KELLY RASHKA
  • Kelly Rashka
  • Tyler Vondrak, a.k.a. The Dragon
This week Tyler lines up his picks for the NFL Playoffs. Pick your bets wisely with the knowledge of the dragon by your side.

Game 1: Los Angeles Rams at New Orleans Saints
Line: Saints -3.5,
Over/Under: 57
Pick: Under 57
Bet: $25 to win $22.73

A rematch of our two NFC titans this year. The two best offenses meet again but this time around I’m expecting a different style of game. A few factors are pushing me to the under. Brees’ arm showing some wear and tear throughout this year, Talib sure to be all over Thomas (He was absent last game in the 10 points loss), McVay’s lack of confidence in the big pass play with Goff, Goff’s fall off in production since Cooper Kupp’s injury, and two teams with dual dynamic running backs has me grabbing the under 57 all day. While this isn’t the most exciting bet in the world it is what I feel a safe one. This is the NFC championship game and positions are more valuable than ever. We will see plenty of action from the four running backs in a grind it out type of game keeping that score below 57.

Game 2: New England Patriots at Kansas City Chiefs
Line: Chiefs -3
Over/Under: 55.5
Picks: Chiefs -3 and Under 55.5
Bet: $25 on -3 to win $22.73 and $25 to win $22.73

Couldn’t ask for a better AFC championship game in my opinion. The old guard coming into the new guards house as an underdog in a sub 20 degree game. Mahomes is playing lights out. The Chiefs defense, one of the NFL’s worst, has come alive in the postseason with an extremely impressive showing against the colts. All while the Patriots have been awful on the road this year and while they usually own this time of the year I can’t go against this Chiefs team at home. Mahomes I think will have us all talking around the water cooler on Monday after an impressive game on his way to making history this year.

The other bet on this game is far more data driven. There has never been a NFL game to go over 50 points in temperatures below 25 degrees. While the weather report keeps changing daily I haven’t seen anything forecasted above 22. I’ll take those odds and see what happens.

Pick = Chiefs to win -150 parlayed with Saints to win -160
Bet = $20 to win $34.17

Final pick of the week I’m throwing out a money-line parlay on the home teams. History is on our side with the home teams typically coming out ahead in these scenarios. 9 out of the last 10 years the AFC home team has won while 8 of the last 10 years the NFC home team has won. These teams are all so even that I think it really comes down to that edge of home field advantage and I’ll take that check to the bank.

Total Bets = $95 to win $102.36

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All Bets Are On: On Arizona's loss to Oregon, the State of the Pac-12 and Whether Patrick Mahomes will win the NFL MVP

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 4:13 PM

The second installment of Tucson Weekly's newest podcast, All Bets Are On, is live, with co-hosts Christopher Boan and Tyler Vondrak breaking down the latest in sports and betting information.

The hosts this week tackle the Wildcats' 59-54 loss to Oregon, as well as their upcoming clash with Oregon State University on Saturday evening.

The two also break down the Pac-12 as a whole, giving their picks for the other men's basketball games scheduled for Saturday.

The dynamic duo finish their 30-minute podcast with a segment on this weekend's NFL playoff games, and whether anyone can knock Patrick Mahomes off to win the league's MVP award.

Check out the episode in the link above, and make sure to abide by the suggestions that the Dragon himself, Tyler Vondrak, lives by.

Happy betting, ladies and gents. 

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Flandrau Science Center Provides “Moon Music Serenade” for Upcoming Eclipse

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 2:58 PM

  • BigStock
Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium at the University of Arizona is off to the moon, hosting its first ever Moon Music Serenade event pairing music, telescopes, and a special moon presentation.

A lunar eclipse will begin on Sunday, Jan. 20, at 8:30 p.m. when the Earth’s shadow starts to cross over the Moon, leading to a full lunar eclipse around 9:40 p.m. when the shadow moves to cover the entire Moon.

“When people see things happening in the skies with their own eyes or through telescopes, it inspires their curiosity about planetary science,” said Shipherd Reed, Associate Director of Communications at the Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium.

Flandrau has partnered with the UA Lunar & Planetary Lab, and Tucson Amateur Astronomers Association for this event. Volunteers from TAAA will provide telescopes for the public to enjoy and participate in the lunar eclipse.

Attendees also have the chance to capture some pictures of the eclipse. TAAA will provide smartphone photography adaptors right on their telescopes, so people can capture pictures of this lunar event.

“It’s a great opportunity to tap into what the UA has to offer the Tucson community,” Reed said.

The event will beheld outside on the UA mall. UA Chamber Winds will accompany the eclipse and the telescope gazing with wind, brass, and percussion instruments. The Chamber Winds, comprised of students from the Fred Fox School of Music, will play music themed by the stars and moon, according to Martin Gaines, a UA doctoral conducting student. Gaines will lead the Chamber Winds group for this event.

The Chamber Winds will play three songs while the lunar eclipse is happening, including Mozart Serenade in C Minor and an André Chaplet piece. The songs are paired just right for the event, according to Gaines.

“We’re doing a piece by Mozart that was written in 1782 and this is a wind serenade that was meant to be played at essentially an outdoors social event,” Gaines said. “I think it’s going to be fun to hear that in kind of the way that it was originally conceived to be performed.”

Steve Kortenkamp, a UA planetary scientist, will present about the Moon prior to the Chamber Winds performance at 7 p.m. His presentation will include talks about the Moon, what we already know and what we want to discover from the NASA research spacecraft that is orbiting the Moon.

The concert, the telescope viewings, and Flandrau exhibits will be free and open to the public. The Moon presentation by Kortenkamp and “Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon” Laser light show are $5 each. The event will start at the same time of the eclipse, at 8:30 p.m. on Sunday, January 20, 2019 on the UA mall just outside of the Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium.

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Community Members Release Statement In Opposition of Tucson Women's March

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 1:30 PM

2017 Women's March in Tucson - TIRION MORRIS
  • Tirion Morris
  • 2017 Women's March in Tucson

Yesterday Tucson Weekly published an article about the upcoming Tucson Women’s March on Jan. 20. The story did not include information about the communities that have felt mistreated during the creation of this event.

Summer Aguilera, a member of the Chukson Tucson Water Protectors, went to the first public organizers meeting for the Tucson Women’s March almost a year ago. From the beginning, she began to notice problematic behaviors from within the organization’s leadership.

She said the leaders, many of whom are white, gave titles but no real decision-making power to some of the groups they claim to represent. They wouldn’t allow Spanish-speaking women to give speeches at the march, claiming their accents were too thick. She said they tokenized women of color and LGBTQ+ groups by believing they had done their part just by scheduling people of those identities to speak at the event.

In response to these actions, a community statement was released in opposition of the march. The community members who drafted the statement made it clear they are not speaking for everyone, since there are women of color and LGBTQ+ folks who will participate in the event and have had different experiences with the leadership.

In December, Aguilera brought her concerns to the leaders of the Tucson Women’s March, but was told she was being “uncivil.” She was accompanied by white allies who repeated her exact concerns, to which the leaders welcomingly acknowledged. Aguilera said she and organizers like her were told they are the cause of the divide in the women’s march, and that they were creating the problem.

The national women’s march movement has struggled with inclusivity since the beginning. The public fallout of the Women’s March, Inc. organization over accusations of keeping organizers of color powerless and anti-Semitism beliefs echo similar rifts happening in women’s march organizations across the country. In some of the most liberal cities, women of color and LGBTQ+ folks have experienced pushback from the very organizations that claim to champion their daily struggles.

Here in Tucson, Aguilera believes the women’s march is not really for marginalized people, it’s for those with privilege to feel good about themselves. She said organizing an event makes them feel like they’re being allies, but by maintaining control of it they are only taking resources away from those who actually need it. She said they don’t talk about their own complicity and actions that perpetuate oppression or attend community events organized by the marginalized groups themselves, they only focus on putting together this symbolic march.

Local groups in support of this position include Black Lives Matter Tucson, Coalición de Derechos Humanos, Chukson Water Protectors, Border Patrol Victims Network, Sustainable Nations, TYLO (Tierra Y Libertad Organization), Free the Children Coalition, Flowers and Bullets, Sex Workers Outreach Project, Bruv Luv, Pan Left, Split Seeds Production, O’odham Anti Border Collective, Alliance for Global Justice, Take Back the Night, Borderlinks, Tucson Lobaz, GLOO Factory, Green Party of Pima County Chair Sara Mae Williams (Tohono O’odham) and Tucson Brown Berets - Citlamina Xochitlquetzalli along with numerous local activists. Aguilera said the list has grown longer since they released it.

Cynthia Bistrain, the chair of the Tucson Women’s March, said she was very saddened to see their statement. She said this is a difficult space to be in and everyone is plagued by making their own assumptions, but she and the other leaders, many of whom are older women, are still willing to have those difficult conversations.

Marla Pacheco, a representative of the Coalición de Derechos Humanos, said they have received support from across the country since they released the statement. Groups in other cities have had the same problems with women’s marches in their cities that claim inclusivity but don’t support it.

Their opposition to the women’s march has actually united communities that have equally been sidelined from the mainstream liberal movement, according to Aguilera.

She and others are planning their own demonstration for International Women’s Day in early March. She said they will give a genuine platform for marginalized groups to speak and will be a safe space for all. More details will be available in the near future.

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Arizona Basketball: Kenny Wooten and Oregon beat Arizona 59-54 in Tucson

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 11:54 AM

Sophomore forward Ira Lee fights past Oregon forward Kenny Wooten during Thursday's 59-54 Ducks victory over the Wildcats in Tucson. - SIMON ASHER FOR TUCSON WEEKLY
  • Simon Asher for Tucson Weekly
  • Sophomore forward Ira Lee fights past Oregon forward Kenny Wooten during Thursday's 59-54 Ducks victory over the Wildcats in Tucson.
A steady stream of red-clad fans scurried out of the oversized exits at McKale Center in the waning minutes of Thursday's Arizona-Oregon basketball game.

The 14,032 fans in attendance left in advance of the final buzzer, with the home side's fate in-hand, and a rare home loss handed to the Wildcats (13-5, 4-1) by the visiting Oregon Ducks.

It was a result that echoed through the vaunted venue, leaving players and coaches stammering in its wake.

For longtime Arizona coach Sean Miller, the night's result was a result of poor ball-handling, mixed with badly-timed shots and improper execution.

"Our shot selection, our ball movement, and our turnovers were much better in the second half than the first half. But clearly our offense was a problem here tonight," Miller said. "And I'll also tell you that there's been many games that we've won, and had to overcome that night when the ball isn't going in, but you have to do it with great defense. Tonight our defense was good, but it's the furthest from great."

The Wildcats' road to defeat started with the team's nine turnovers in the game's first half, combined with what Miller called five three-point shots that never should have happened.

The net result was a deficit that draped across the home side's backs throughout the night, ultimately proving too heavy to overcome.

"We took some challenged tough threes. We had gotten away from that, and that had really served us well," Miller said. "But I would say at halftime we didn't have nine turnovers, we really had 14 because we took five just horrible, challenged, selfish shots."

Junior forward Chase Jeter, who led the Wildcats in scoring (12) and rebounding (10), heaped praise on the Ducks' relentless effort on both sides of the ball.

The Duke University transfer admitted that the Ducks' relentless press defense was too much for the home side to overcome, resulting in Arizona's second home loss of the season.

"They played really hard tonight. I think initially we were blown back by that. After a while, our effort just wasn't good enough to win tonight," Jeter said. "I think that Oregon played very hard, and we owe them a lot of credit."

The Ducks' defense limited Arizona's leading scorer, Brandon Randolph, to a season-low five points on 2-of-9 shooting.

They limited Arizona to hitting 36.5 percent of their shots from the field, well below their yearly average of 45.2 percent.

Sophomore forward Ira Lee, who scored 9 points for Arizona on Thursday, acknowledged that the home side's offense wasn't up to par against the Ducks.

"We definitely were getting good shots, they just weren't falling," Lee said. "It was one of those games where if we did wanna win it was gonna be on the defensive end. And we were playing good defense, but coach said we could've played great defense. So it definitely made a huge difference in the game."

The Wildcats host Oregon State at 5 p.m. on Saturday, against a Beavers squad that's 11-5 overall, and 3-1 in conference play.

The game, which will be carried on the Pac-12 Network, pits two teams coming off their first conference losses of the year.

The Beavers also lost on Thursday, falling to Arizona State, 70-67, in Tempe. They previously beat Oregon, USC and UCLA to open conference play.

Jeter believes the Wildcats' will be ready to play at a higher level on both sides of the ball come Saturday evening.

"We've got Oregon State on Saturday so it's a new game, it's a chance for everybody to bounce back," he said. "And I think we're gonna do a good job responding."

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Pounds of Drugs Found After Pima County Sheriff Conduct Traffic Stop

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 9:26 AM

34-year-old Jesus Maria Lopez-Verduzco. - COURTESY PIMA COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT
  • Courtesy Pima County Sheriff's Department
  • 34-year-old Jesus Maria Lopez-Verduzco.
Pounds of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine, and 10,000 pills suspected to be fentanyl are off the streets of Tucson after the Pima County Sherriff’s Department arrested 34-year-old Jesus Maria Lopez-Verduzco Tuesday afternoon.

According to the sheriff’s department, which announced the news the afternoon of Thursday, Jan. 18, Lopez-Verduzco was stopped near the 1000 block of N. Euclid Road around 5:45 p.m. after a “Title 28 violation.” Title 28 under the Arizona Revised Statutes covers transportation, and PCSD was unable to immediately provide a specific violation.

During the traffic investigation, $1,916 and “several individually packaged baggies” including cocaine, heroin, suspected fentanyl, and methamphetamine were found. Lopez-Verduzco was arrested and charged for possession of a dangerous drug, possession of a narcotic drug, transportation for sale, prohibited possessor and for possessing a firearm while transporting narcotics and booked into Pima County jail.

PCSD also announced that information obtained during the stop led to deputies investigating a residence in the 1900 block of North Wilmont Road. At the home, deputies found a stolen hand gun, 10,000 suspected fentanyl pills, 11.3 lbs. of heroin, 5.76 lbs. of cocaine, and 8.78 lbs. of methamphetamine with an estimated street value of over $400,000 dollars.

According to jail records, Lopez-Verduzco is being held on $10,000 bond.

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Claytoon of the Day: Cork In The Union

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 9:17 AM

Find more Claytoonz here.

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26 Great Things to Do in Tucson This Weekend: Jan. 18 to 20

Posted By on Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 1:00 AM

  • courtesy

Dillinger Days. On Jan. 25, 1934, Public Enemy No. 1, John Dillinger, was finally captured right here in Tucson. We’ve been tooting our horns about it and celebrating with Dillinger Days for a full two and half decades now, so this Dillinger Days is celebrating both Dillinger’s capture and the subsequent celebrations themselves. Check out fancy drinks, like Japanese whiskey and 10-year-old single malt scotch, as well as fancy foods, like smashed fingerling potatoes and mini vegetable wellingtons, at the speakeasy at 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 18 ($40 GA / $75 VIP). Then watch three reenactments of Dillinger’s capture (11 a.m., 1:15 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.), explore a historical artifacts exhibit and a vintage car show, attend lectures, and do some arts and crafts all day on Saturday, Jan. 19. Saturday’s event is free, or $30 for a front-row experience. Hotel Congress, 311 E. Congress St. Details here.

Tucson Square Dance Festival. Usually, you say “be there or be square,” but in this case, it’s all or nothing, baby. Be there AND be square. The Southern Arizona Callers and Cuers Association is bringing in callers from California and Colorado to this three-day bonanza full of workshops, square dancing and more square dancing. They’ll have mainstream, plus, advanced and rounds, and you’ll have tons of fun. (If square dancing is your thing, that is. And hey, it’s a new year and a new you, right? Maybe square dancing really is your thing!) 1 to 10 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18, 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 19. Sunday, Jan. 20. St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, 8051 E. Broadway Blvd. $40 per person, $25 all day rates. Details here.

Catalina Organ Festival. The Catalina United Methodist Church on Speedway always comes through with incredible organists. On the docket this time: Crista Miller, director of music and cathedral organist at Houston’s Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, contemporary composition advocate and doctor of organ performance (she has a doctorate of musical arts). Miller has performed all over the world and in half of the U.S. states, and oversees the Celebrity Organ Series and on the steering committee of the National Conference of Roman Catholic Cathedral Musicians. TL;DR: This woman is really, really good at playing the organ. You’re lucky to get the opportunity to watch her play. So go watch her play. 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18. Catalina United Methodist Church, 2700 E. Speedway Blvd. $5 to $20. Details here.

Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue. You might not guess it, but Trombone Shorty is not actually the name Troy Andrews was born with. But it might as well have been. He picked up the trombone at age four, when most of us are just beginning to master the art of picking up regular, non-sippy cups. He started playing professionally soon after, had his own band by age eight and was touring with the Neville Brothers in his teens. He’s performed with everyone from Hall & Oates to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and has performed everywhere from Japan to Brazil to the White House to (now) Centennial Hall! You trombone’t want to miss it. 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18. Centennial Hall, 1020 E. University Blvd. $25 to $100+. Details here.

WomenKraft Rummage Sale. Everyone knows that, in this day and age, the place you’ll find the most reliably good weather is indoors. The fact that it’s inside is just one of the things that makes this fundraiser by WomenKraft, a nonprofit arts organization dedicated to empowering women and other underrepresented groups, so cool. Looking for clothes, shoes, art supplies, books, LPs, furniture, frames, bedding, dishes or appliances? They’ve got it. What about a red leather electric recliner? Or a vintage cabinet from the early 20th century (at least that’s what they think)? Who doesn’t love a good bargain and supporting badass women? 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18 and Saturday, Jan. 19. 388 S. Stone Ave. Details here.

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Staff Pick

Carnival of Illusion: Magic, Mystery & Oooh La La!

This top-rated illusion show is "Revitalizing Magic" by blending an international travel theme with all the charms… More

@ Scottish Rite Grand Parlour Saturdays, 7:30-9 p.m. Continues through April 27 160 South Scott Ave

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