Well don’t totally forget the keywords but I think if you spend more than 5 minutes on keywords you’re going to be pretty surprised by some purported data I stumbled across. As you likely know Google uses about 200 factors in determining your sites ranking. I personally have place a lot of emphasis on speed and backlinks and while I have thought it was important I must admit I didn’t give the social media factor as much attention as I should.
The first big thing to not is that 10.3% of ranking is CTR so if you have ever seen your content just jump up on the rankings and then slowly (or quickly) taper off as time goes its likely that people are clicking on you less and less as you slide below the pages. Its the single biggest impact. I feel Google gives you the benefit of doubt at first ranking you higher than average and then they allow people to determine if your site is worth it. That’s important to consider and similar to conversion rates.
When we take human behavior out we have largely backlinks and social media deciding your ranking ability. These make sense, if no one is talking about you but they are about your competition and more people click on your competitors site who also has the most backlinks you’re wasting your time trying to get your keywords exactly right in the headers, description and title….they combined contribute a value of 5 where backlinks are over 120.
I’ve been managing Google Adwordscampaigns for political campaigns mostly but recently I stepped out into managing the Adwords campaigns for an IT consulting company. It’s a little bit of a challenge I’m not going to lie. More than just matching the search with the keyword I need to attract only business customer and cut out residential. So as you can image someone Googles “IT Help Desks” and they might be looking for a specific help desk, a personal help desk or a help desk to contract business services too.
Wordstream Free Alternative
In Ultimate SEO‘s struggle to compete in this expensive market I tried Wordstream out for a week and a half of so and thats really not enough time to get much actionable help. I was pulled into a sales demo consultation and sure it seemed like it could offer insights but WOW … the expense associated with that out paced any other SEO tool I use. I felt the main task Wordstream was completing was organizing and presenting the data in a way that I could see the areas of need. Google Data Studio has been doing that for me in SEO for over a year now so I’ve tried my hand at making a Google Adwords Google Data Studio report with the aim to save about three hundred a month from getting Wordstream.
Data Studio Adwords Template
Google Data Studio also lets you copy reports that others make available and you can attach your own data respository to populate the report. Basically if you want a Google Data Studio Template for Adwords you’re welcome to copy this report in Google Data Studio.
I’ll come back in a month and let you know how this free product helped or didn’t help me rather than paying PPC software provides.
SEO & PPC Data Studio Report Using Adwords, Google Analytics and Google Search Console All-In-One Template
Google Data Studio Reports are some fun things. Here at Ultimate SEO you love visualizations and thats partially why we like Data Studio. Beyond the looks its also integrated easily with Google Sheets, Google Analytics and Search Console to name a few. These few though create a powerful free SEO PPC tool.
You can check out the report directly by clicking the link above, here is an embedded look at the nine pages of live data thats basically always right. It’s nice to be able to pull in data from two very different Google tools. Lots of people know of Google Analytics and think it covers Google Search Console but it doesn’t and I’ll discuss that more in another post but the unique data from these sources can all mix to form one handy live report.
You can check out all the information pulled here in this report and change the dates as needed using the drop down. To personalize the report to your own site simply copy it and set the data sources to your own Google Analytics and Search Console sources. Word of caution on the Search Console aspect there are two connections, one is the site and the other I believe is the page urls. So make sure to connect those correctly. Just like in electrical work it’s like to like.
Across these nine pages you’ll find insights into any site with an Adwords campaign including keywords, search terms, CTR and CPC.
In Search Console, the Performance report currently credits all page metrics to the exact URL that the user is referred to by Google Search. Although this provides very specific data, it makes property management more difficult; for example: if your site has mobile and desktop versions on different properties, you must open multiple properties to see all your Search data for the same piece of content.
To help unify your data, Search Console will soon begin assigning search metrics to the (Google-selected) canonical URL, rather than the URL referred to by Google Search. This change has several benefits:
It unifies all search metrics for a single piece of content into a single URL: the canonical URL. This shows you the full picture about a specific piece of content in one property.
For users with separate mobile or AMP pages, it unifies all (or most, since some mobile URLs may end up as canonical) of your data to a single property (the “canonical” property).
It improves the usability of the AMP and Mobile-Friendly reports. These reports currently show issues in the canonical page property, but show the impression in the property that owns the actual URL referred to by Google Search. After this change, the impressions and issues will be shown in the same property.
When will this happen?
We plan to transition all performance data on April 10, 2019. In order to provide continuity to your data, we will pre-populate your unified data beginning from January 2018. We will also enable you to view both old and new versions for a few weeks during the transition to see the impact and understand the differences.
At an individual URL level, you will see traffic shift from any non-canonical (duplicate) URLs to the canonical URL.
At the property level, you will see data from your alternate property (for example, your mobile site) shifted to your “canonical property”. Your alternate property traffic probably won’t drop to zero in Search Console because canonicalization is at the page, not the property level, and your mobile property might have some canonical pages. However, for most users, most property-level data will shift to one property. AMP property traffic will drop to zero in most cases (except for self-canonical pages).
You will still be able to filter data by device, search appearance (such as AMP), country, and other dimensions without losing important information about your traffic.
You can see some examples of these traffic changes below.
Preparing for the change
Consider whether you need to change user access to your various properties; for example: do you need to add new users to your canonical property, or do existing users continue to need access to the non-canonical properties.
Modify any custom traffic reports you might have created in order to adapt for this traffic shift.
If you want to save your traffic data calculated using the current system, you should download your data using either the Performance report’s Export Data button, or using the Search Console API.
Here are a few examples showing how data might change on your site. In these examples, you can see how your traffic numbers would change between a canonical site (called example.com) and alternate site (called m.example.com).
In the current version, some of your traffic is attributed to the canonical property and some to the alternate property. The new version should attribute all of your traffic to the canonical property.
Individual page traffic
You can see traffic changes between the duplicate and canonical URLs for individual pages in the Pages view. The next example shows how traffic that used to be split between the canonical and alternate pages are now all attributed to the canonical URL:
In the current version, all of your mobile traffic was attributed to your m. property. The new version attributes all traffic to your canonical property when you apply the “Device: Mobile” filter as shown here:
We know that this change might seem a little confusing at first, but we’re confident that it will simplify your job of tracking traffic data for your site. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out on the Webmaster Help Foru
That’s not quite how things have played out. The 2017 Cubs stumbled out of the gate and never quite clicked, eventually losing to the Dodgers in the National League Championship Series. The 2018 version squandered the five-game division lead they held over the Brewers on Sept. 1, lost the division tiebreaker in Game 163 of the regular season and then promptly lost the wild-card game against Colorado. And the Cubs’ grip on the Central figures to loosen even further this season. According to a preliminary version of our 2019 MLB Projections, we give Chicago only the third-best projected record (84 wins) in the division, with a mere 24 percent chance of winning it.
The NL Central has caught up with the Cubs
How our preliminary Elo ratings are forecasting the 2019 NL Central race
Avg. Simulated Season
Win World Series
How is it possible that the Cubs went from dynasty in the making in 2016 to a team struggling to stay atop its own division in less than three years? The answer lies in part with the team’s declining core and team president Theo Epstein’s inability to supplement it with effective reinforcements from the outside — particularly when it comes to pitching.
It all came together as a textbook example of tearing down and rebuilding a franchise. The 2016 Cubs had baseball’s third-most-valuable pitchers by WAR (including the No. 1 starting rotation) and the best defense by a country mile, on top of an offense that tied for the NL lead in adjusted on-base plus slugging percentage. The pitching side was expensive and creaky — one of the oldest ever to win a World Series, in fact — but Epstein and the Cubs seemed to be winning the battle of ideas about where to invest in order to build a ballclub with perennial championship aspirations.
Since 2016, though, the formula has broken down. The team’s net WAR on arrivals and departures — in which Chicago topped baseball from 2012 to 2016 — has dropped to eighth-worst in MLB. The Cubs haven’t added very many new faces, and what few acquisitions the team has made have largely flopped, particularly on the mound. Starters Tyler Chatwood, Jose Quintana and Yu Darvish all badly underperformed their established performance levels as members of the Cubs, for instance. As a result, Chicago has mainly had to rely on its existing core to keep the team in contention.
This makes some sense, to a certain extent. The natural maturation process of a championship team is to add talent in the lead-up to contention, then shift toward maintaining it once the roster finally reaches the top of the heap. But that hasn’t really happened, either. Not only have the new players underperformed, the team’s nexus of homegrown talent has, too. The Cubs’ holdovers are a net -14.8 WAR since 2016, which ranks fourth-worst in MLB. The multiyear plan to build a great core and then set it loose doesn’t work when that core regresses.
The rise and stall of the Cubs
Chicago Cubs’ net wins above replacement (WAR) added/subtracted by season from incoming/outgoing and existing players, 2013-18
Net WAR from…
The 2018 Cubs shared some of the strengths of the 2016 club — both had top-5 defenses by WAR — but Chicago slipped to 14th in WAR from its starting rotation and was basically average offensively according to adjusted OPS. An injury to Bryant cost him 60 games, while Rizzo’s performance declined for reasons mostly unknown.
Bryzzo wasn’t alone in its combined downturn. Sixteen players appeared on the 2016, 2017 and 2018 Cubs. Some of them — such as Contreras, Baez and Schwarber — have flourished in expanded roles since 2016. But in more cases than not, this core group has produced less despite being asked to carry more of the load over time:3
The Cubs are relying on the same core … and getting less
For players who were on the 2016, 2017 and 2018 Chicago Cubs, share of team playing time logged* and wins above replacement (WAR) by season
Carl Edwards Jr.
Tommy La Stella
It also bears mentioning that Epstein and the Cubs have been hamstrung in how much outside talent they can add by a massive payroll bill, which has affected the team’s depth all across the diamond. In terms of marginal payroll per WAR, Chicago went from being the second-most cost-effective playoff team of 2016 to the least cost-effective playoff team of 2018.
Trade pickup Cole Hamels was one of the few pitchers who didn’t underwhelm in Chicago (he was very good upon joining the Cubs at last year’s deadline). And in the field, rookie David Bote was a pleasant surprise last season. Both will be back for 2019, along with practically all the rest of the aforementioned core.4 The Cubs were briefly rumored to be in on the Bryce Harper derby, but for now Chicago’s biggest offseason acquisition is utilityman Daniel Descalso. And the lack of upgrades is part of the problem heading into 2019.
Although FanGraphs projects the Cubs to have a top-5 lineup, the site sees the pitching staff dropping outside MLB’s top 10 — and with an 88-win prediction for the Cubs, FanGraphs is one of the forecasters most bullish on Chicago’s chances. If the Brewers caught the Cubs on talent last season, the Cardinals might have passed them both by now. Meanwhile, manager Joe Maddon is in the final year of his contract, with no extension in place going forward. From team leadership to the core of the roster, many of the factors that played a key role in Chicago’s rise now look shockingly uncertain three years later.
The good news for Chicago, though, is that the potential still exists for an exciting summer at Wrigley Field. Even if 2016 was an outlier, a team as talented as the 2017 and 2018 Cubs — which was, after all, good enough for an average of 93.5 wins per season — remains a contender. It might not be the kind of dynasty that either Epstein or fans on the North Side had in mind when they were celebrating their curse-breaking World Series victory. But hey, at least it’s far better than all the badCubteams of the 1980s and ’90s that many of us grew up watching on WGN.
President Trump has declared a national emergency to obtain funding to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, after lawmakers did not approve the $5.7 billion he’d requested. And in doing so, he has sparked a debate on whether the executive branch can — or should — use its power to unilaterally achieve a policy goal. The president does have an enormous amount of latitude to declare national emergencies, but Trump’s use of the power in this way is unusual and could have far-reaching consequences.
“A Democratic president can declare emergencies as well,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned Republicans on Thursday. “So the precedent that the president is setting here is something that should be met with great unease and dismay by the Republicans.”
The action raises problems of both principle and precedent for some right-leaning and libertarian legal specialists. But others argue that Trump’s action is probably legal or say they’re not especially worried about potential consequences down the line.
First of all, some legal experts see a fundamental problem with Republicans’ endorsement of a potentially dramatic expansion of executive power. There is a potential case to be made that Trump’s action, regardless of what it means for the future, violates basic principles of limited-government conservatism, which is generally opposed to executive overreach and supportive of a strong separation of powers. “I think it’s problematic in general, regardless of the legality, for the president to stretch his authority under these broad statutory delegations in ways that haven’t been done before,” said David Bernstein, a professor of law at George Mason University. “It gives the president more power to act unilaterally, and that’s not the way our system is supposed to work.”
Bernstein added that he blames former President Barack Obama for beginning this trend. First in 2012 and then again in 2014, Obama issued sweeping executiveorders that protected young undocumented immigrants who were brought to the country as children. But he said Republicans shouldn’t allow this kind of executive overreach to continue, particularly for an expensive project like the wall. “It’s not just that overly broad executive power is being endorsed here — it’s being endorsed for a quintessential big-government boondoggle,” he said.
The question of property rights is another potentially sticky issue for conservatives, because Trump will likely need to use eminent domain — the government’s power to take private property and put it to public use — to seize much of the land he needs for the wall, according to Ilya Somin, who is a law professor at George Mason and identifies as a libertarian. Conservatives and libertarians both tend to be critical of eminent domain in general, and members of his own party have criticized Trump in the past for his history of support for the tactic and his attempt to use it in a real estate project. “Building this wall will require the seizure of a large amount of private property without congressional authorization,” Somin said. “To the extent that Republicans support Trump on this, they deserve censure for that.”
Others, however, pointed out that Trump isn’t drawing on powers that don’t exist — he’s acting within the broad authority that was given to the president by Congress. “This is not the president making stuff up,” said Josh Blackman, a professor at the South Texas College of Law Houston. But Blackman said that just because Trump’s action may be legal, that doesn’t mean Congress has to go along with it — and he thinks they shouldn’t. “The president asked for the authority to build this wall, Congress said no, and now he’s trying to go around Congress,” he said. “Do I think that’s a good idea? No. But I think the president probably has the authority to do this.”
John Malcolm, a senior legal fellow at the right-leaning Heritage Foundation, said he’s “not overly concerned” about future Democratic presidents declaring a national emergency to achieve their own policy goals because the declaration would need to be grounded in a statute and he doesn’t think there is an obvious candidate to use for something like climate change. “The president doesn’t get to declare a national emergency about anything,” he said. “I think creative presidents might try to do various things along these lines in the future, but they won’t necessarily be successful.”
He added that he’s inclined to trust Trump when he says there’s an emergency that justifies immediate action. “I think there’s no doubt that the threats the president is describing along our southern border are real,” he said. “The real shame is that Congress hasn’t worked with him to come up with a more workable solution that responds to those threats. It seems to me that they’re not doing that because they just don’t like this president.”
But Somin and Bernstein both said they thought Trump was setting a dangerous precedent — future Democratic presidents might want to declare a national emergency of their own over something like gun violence or climate change. “This is how slippery slopes work,” Bernstein said. “One president breaches the norm, then another president breaches it more, and it just keeps going.”
Trump’s declaration of a national emergency is now headed for what will almost certainly be a lengthy court battle. The more immediate question is how Republican politicians will respond. Congress has the power to terminate a president’s emergency declaration through a joint resolution of disapproval, but the resolution would need to pass with veto-proof majorities in both chambers to be successful.
Some Senate Republicans have already voiced concerns similar to Pelosi’s. Sen. Marco Rubio said that “today’s national emergency is border security” but also said that a future Democratic president “may use this exact same tactic to impose the Green New Deal,” a policy framework recently proposed by Democrats that calls for large public investments to combat climate change. But other Republicans — including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — have changed their public positions; after originally opposing a national emergency declaration, they are now lining up behind the president. In the coming days and weeks, they’ll have a tough choice: whether to back the president or rebuke him.
Ultimate SEO has begun to develop its UltimateSEO.online site as a store front where visitors can purchase SEO products and services. At this time we have several SEO Audit packages listed. More details will be added to the products but they are the same as currently described on SEO Services
Additionally we will role out subscription packages for ranking reports and data trending as well as content development and backlinking campaigns.
UltimateSEO.org has backlinks from about a thousand domains. In a recent review of these I found an odd reoccurring link from multiple domains but all with the same content and titles. I was introduced with “The Globe” which charges sites to NOT list them or makes money from SEOs paying them to not backlink to them. At $36 a link they’re likely insane and I bet its bringing in some money. But before we go all crazy and start paying Ransomlinks (if its not a word I claim it … Ransomlinks are backlinks from bad sites meant to lower your SEO score unless you pay to not be linked too.)
In reviewing the situation I ran across a list of the most disavowed sites. I figured Id share that with you below, but before I do what outcome did I choose for these bad links pointed to my site?
Option 1 Pay: Heck No! Then the terrorists win.
Disavow: No! Don’t use disavow unless Google has placed a manual action against your site. I’m skeptical anyhow of the tools purpose and Google itself says there is no need to use the tool unless you’ve been penalized and told by them you are being penalized.
Do Nothing: Yes! Don’t do anything. Google likely knows about the Ransomlinks scheme and has already penalized the site by deindexing it. There are so many random domains its going to be a mess to address so let it be unless you have a seen a negative affect. In other words…before you saw your leg off wondering if that spot is cancer…stop and find out.
An idea: 301 Redirect Them…seriously…all of these links point to a subdomain that until now hasn’t existed. Most others who are talking about this site note a similar subdomain targeted. I could create the targeted subdomain and redirect all links to it from my site back to theirs. 🙂
I’m opting for the third as I dont have any indication that Google cares about these Ransomlinks. They may actually bring some random traffic of use so redirecting them would take that from my site.
Super Bowl LIII is not only about two of the league’s best offenses squaring off against one another — New England and Los Angeles — it’s also about America’s other favorite pastime: gambling. The total amount bet on the Super Bowl1 has risen from $40 million in 1991 to more than $158 million in 2018, and much of that growth has come from “props” or proposition bets.
For readers who aren’t degenerate gamblers, prop bets are wagers you can place on events during a game that don’t directly involve the final outcome. This year there are the standard prop bets, like if the Patriots will score a touchdown in the first quarter (they never have in a Super Bowl), or if the Rams will rush for more than 127.5 yards (they averaged 143.3 yards per game in the regular season and the playoffs). But there are also more exotic prop bets on things like whether Donald Trump will tweet more than six times during the game. (The implied probability on one offshore book is 58 percent that he will hit the over.)
Another interesting wager is on the length of Gladys Knight’s rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Several offshore books have set the total for the anthem at 1 minute 47 seconds, and the implied odds for both the under and the over were set at one book at -115 — a 53.5 percent implied probability — on both sides.2 The implied probabilities being equal indicates that the book has no real opinion on the length of Gladys’s performance — they just want to take a percentage from each side of the wager and hope bettors will place their bets evenly on both.
But is Knight performing the anthem in over/under 107 seconds really close to a 50 percent proposition? Or is there evidence that might convince us that the oddsmakers got the probabilities wrong?
To find out, I went to Youtube and watched 40 Super Bowl national anthems from 1979 to 2018. I eliminated any anthems with trumpeters (there were two) and then started timing the anthem from the moment the singer first started to sing and ended the timer after the completion of the first utterance of “brave.”3 Using this methodology, the 40-year average of all national anthem singers4 is 106.1 seconds, roughly in line with the total set by the books. So the total is correct so far as the average goes, but it also seems lazy. Surely there are other factors that might help us better predict how long Gladys might sing.
For starters, the performance time of the anthem has changed as the Super Bowl has grown to become the unparalleled cultural phenomenon we now enjoy each year. As the pomp, circumstance and viewership have increased, the time anthem performers spend on the stage has also risen.
So while anthems have gotten longer over time, the 40-year average is not fully accounting for that trend. When you do account for it5 the best forecast for the 2019 anthem is actually 119 seconds, 13 seconds over the 40-year average.
Gender of the anthem singer is also significant. Men tend to sing the anthem more quickly than women — though not many men have sung the anthem in recent years, when the anthems have been getting longer overall. Still, the all-time shortest anthem performance was by a man — the incomparable Neil Diamond — who got in and out like a boss in a cool 61 seconds. And the longest anthem ever performed at a Super Bowl was by the unforgettable Natalie Cole in 1994, which clocked in at a diva-esque 148 seconds.
Finally, Knight herself appears to be a singer who knows how to stretch a note. Using whosampled, I identified 31 covers performed by Knight and timed the cover performance of each using similar criteria to the anthem timing. Knight’s covers were 7 percent longer than the originals on average, good for a bonus 12.7 seconds of soothing soul per track. In perhaps the best comp to the national anthem — “Ave Maria,” a soaring, vocal-heavy standard covered by hundreds of artists — Gladys’ performance was 37 percent longer than the standard version.
Gladys Knight takes her time with interpretations
Difference in song length between Knight’s covers and the original songs
Taking a larger view, only two anthems in the past 15 years have been performed faster than the 40-year average of 1 minute 47 seconds. And when I looked at the age of the anthem singers, I found no significant correlation between age and performance time.6 On the other hand, we can look at one of Knight’s previous performances of “The Star-Spangled Banner” itself, which is solid piece of evidence against the over, running for 92 seconds. It was, however, performed 28 years ago. All things considered, the bookmakers appear to have this line wrong on Gladys, and her upcoming anthem performance is probably going to go over 107 seconds.
Researching a single prop was a lot of work, and it’s understandable why books might not want to put this level of effort into each and every bet they publish. But it does imply that there are profitable edges for some Super Bowl props. Using the Twitter machine, I threw up a bat signal for a gambling expert to help me confirm my priors. Rufus Peabody, a professional sports bettor and former ESPN contributor who is well-known in gambling circles for the scale and volume of his Super Bowl prop wagers, agreed to help.
“The time and effort to accurately value props is pretty high,” Peabody said. “Some books put more effort into their props than others, and for some props there’s almost no data. Books will move the lines aggressively when sharp bets are made though, which helps them adjust.”
I’ve been keeping an eye on the Gladys anthem line, and it hasn’t moved all week. I was tempted to bet the over, but when I was confronted with the prospect of having to convert real money into Bitcoin in order to place a bet on an offshore site, I decided to abort. When I looked around for somewhere to place the bet in Las Vegas — where they accept actual money — I struck out. Peabody explained that prop bets like anthem length are illegal in Las Vegas because of restrictions on the types of sources casinos can use to “grade” or determine the outcome of a bet.
Even if it won’t net me any cash, I’ll be pulling for Knight to go over regardless. I want her to belt out that last note in “home of the brave” for an egregiously long time. After all, my Twitter credibility is on the line, and that’s serious business.
New York Knicks executives in recent years have said they would rebuild cautiously and avoid trading their first-round picks. That approach paid off — sweet-shooting big man Kristaps Porzingis, the Knicks’ first-round pick in 2015, quickly ascended into a star, giving the team hope that it could finally build something sustainable with just another solid move or two. All the organization needed to do was avoid somehow taking a step backward.
And then Thursday happened.
New York has agreed with Dallas on trade that includes Kristaps Porzingis, Courtney Lee, Tim Hardaway Jr., for Wesley Matthews, Dennis Smith Jr. and DeAndre Jordan, league sources tell ESPN. Players and agents are being notified of particulars. Deal may include more draft assets.
In response, FiveThirtyEight’s biggest NBA fans gathered to process the reported trade.
chris.herring (Chris Herring, senior sportswriter): I covered the Knicks for five years. Not their worst five, necessarily. But saw their worst season in franchise history. You’re naturally going to see them do things that make you scream, “Why?!” But this is a new level, even for me.
This Porzingis trade, if they don’t land a max-level star or two, is just befuddling.
tchow (Tony Chow, video producer/angry Knicks fan): I think I’m going to be a Brooklyn Nets fan now. Why the hell would you do this?
natesilver (Nate Silver, editor in chief): Do we know what draft pick compensation they got, if any? Because that seems pretty important. (These details, which weren’t clear during the time of the chat, emerged shortly after we finished the conversation. New York will receive two future first-round picks in the trade.)
chris.herring: Not the exact terms, no. Though it seems really likely that the Mavs are going to give up something on that front.
natesilver: I guess I’d say this: The process by which the Knicks got to this point is crazy. The outcome, I think, might not be as bad as it seems at first glance. But it really depends on the pick(s).
chris.herring: More than anything, this was about allowing the Knicks to send over their bloated contracts so that they could clear salary cap space. Especially Tim Hardaway Jr., whose deal would’ve made it tough for them to add a second star next to Porzingis this summer.
neil (Neil Paine, senior sportswriter): Yeah, if there is a silver lining (Is there a silver lining?), they just freed up a massive amount of cap space.
The Knicks could be staring at $74.6M in projected cap space for next season. That would be good enough for 2 max slots.
chris.herring: Only spent seven or eight years there, but this is where my New York cynicism comes into play. The Knicks haven’t had a very good history when it comes to FAs.
natesilver: They also got a buy-low guy in Dennis Smith Jr., although it seems like they have about 14 other buy-low point guards on the roster right now.
tchow: But in losing Porzingis, doesn’t that make the Knicks a less attractive destination to come play? If you were a max player, why would you look at this team and say, “I want to go to there”?
natesilver: Well, yeah, that’s the catch.
tchow: I guess maybe two max players could buddy up and that nullifies what I just said.
natesilver: A team of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and … uuuhhhh, who’s the third-best player on that team? Smith Jr., I guess?
tchow: I don’t know what I’m saying anymore. This is INSANE!!! I’m still in shock.
chris.herring: If nothing else, I guess this all just surprises me because it speaks to one of two things. Either 1) You have that much confidence that a superstar is coming …
tchow: Well you’re forgetting Zion, Nate.
chris.herring: Or 2) Things had gotten so bad/toxic with Porzingis that you didn’t see how you could make it work with him anymore. They really had no obligation to give into this right now, even if he was unhappy.
neil: Right, he was only a restricted free agent after the season.
tchow: Well, Chris, if things have gotten that bad with Porzingis, you would think they were secretly shopping him around earlier. Is this really the best deal they could get? I find that hard to believe.
natesilver: It is worth keeping in mind that Porzingis has a serious injury that other guys have struggled to recover from, that he hadn’t reached superstar status yet, and that he was about to get expensive. The upside is so high, though, that you’d think a team, maybe a cap-constrained team, might have given up a little more.
chris.herring: Yep. I’m not blown away by the fact that they dealt him. It’s what they dealt him for.
natesilver: Getting technical, but his cap hold is only like $12 million this summer, so that was a big benefit too.
chris.herring: There are two or three different reasons to potentially deal him. I just don’t know that any of them were worth dealing him for that return.
Kristaps Porzingis, who can become a restricted free agent this summer, has yet to make a decision on his future with Dallas, league sources tell ESPN. He expects to start the process of getting to know the organization soon. Porzingis will continue to rehab his ACL injury.
natesilver: No those don’t contradict. Sign the qualifying offer for one year. Then become a full-fledged free agent in summer 2020.
tchow: Oh damn … you’re right. OK … back to crying.
chris.herring: During the time I spent on the Knicks beat, I got used to watching them attach useful players to ones whose contracts were albatrosses. They traded Tyson Chandler (useful) to unload Raymond Felton (albatross). And Iman Shumpert (useful) to unload JR Smith (albatross).
natesilver: Were Hardaway and Lee that untradeable? They aren’t terrible players, and their contracts aren’t that bad.
chris.herring: Neither is a bad player. Maybe overpaid (I’ve definitely argued that with Hardaway).
natesilver: In some sense, everyone in the deal is a distressed asset.
chris.herring: If anything, Hardaway is just pricey because of what you want to accomplish this summer.
tchow: Watch Dennis Smith Jr. come out of this as the best player in the trade.
natesilver: It’s not nothing.
chris.herring: But Porzingis should not be the sweetener in any deal like this! He’s the lone All-Star changing hands here.
neil: Smith Jr. certainly got a lot of hype as a rookie last year.
tchow: KP 👏 IS 👏 A 👏 UNICORN
chris.herring: I’ll put it this way: Smith and his folks floated that he potentially wanted out of Dallas a week or two ago. That came and went, likely because no one felt like he was worth all that much. He’s explosive. He’s young enough to gamble something on. But he’s not even a clear starter in everyone’s eyes.
natesilver: So what else could they have gotten? What do we think the market price for Porzingis would be? Would Toronto have given up Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby, for instance, and taken on either Hardaway or Lee but not both?
chris.herring: It was only 20 minutes or so before the trade reports came that this tweet went out.
The Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Clippers, Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs and Toronto Raptors are among many teams expected to pursue Kristaps Porzingis in a trade, league sources tell ESPN.
natesilver: I’m just saying that if you clear the decks for two max free agents but you have a guy like Siakam making just $2.5 million a year, that gives you a lot more to work with.
chris.herring: Notice how smart we perceive those particular franchises to be. I saw someone say, “The smart franchises are circling the dumb one.” Almost like the Knicks were the prey here.
tchow: Right?? I keep thinking there must be other, better trades.
chris.herring: For sure. At least with Siakam, you have a good, athletic two-way player to build around.
tchow: This is all just us talking, right? There were no reports that Toronto was even looking to offer Siakam. Right? Right?
chris.herring: I honestly don’t know whether Smith will be a starter two or three years from now. There’s some faith because of how young he is, but he hasn’t shown consistency yet. And the Knicks haven’t been great with developing two-way talent at the guard spot lately.
natesilver: I wanna know about the draft pick(s) too. Dallas still owns its own pick if it’s 1-5 this year — otherwise it goes to Atlanta — and they’re probably still going to end up in the lottery.
neil: I think we are being very NYC-centric here and focusing on the Knicks’ angle. But for the Mavs, their new Doncic-Porzingis combo seems like it could eventually be very scary.
natesilver: NYC IS BASKETBALL MECCA, NEIL! SUCH A MECCA THAT THE ONLY GOOD PLAYER ON THE KNICKS IN THE PAST 10 YEARS GETS TRADED FOR CAP SPACE
tchow: No, Neil’s right. Forget the Knicks. I already have. Porzingis and Luka together is going to be amazing!! No way Dirk retires now.
chris.herring: Dallas is gonna be fun.
natesilver: Yeah, how did they do that? Turn the No. 5 pick and — Dennis Smith Jr.? — into Luka and Porzingis?
chris.herring: The Knicks were spending all this time trying to find a running mate for KP, and now Porzingis has Doncic.
tchow: So right now, we have them projected to be way out of the playoffs. When is Porzingis supposed to return? I’m getting ahead of myself
chris.herring: They’re relevant now. Even if they unloaded a hefty part of their rotation here to get Porzingis. But this was a great move for them.
natesilver: It was a little bit ambiguous. Dallas is tanking, obviously, so maybe they just play him for like six games to show he still had something left (as an inducement to free agents, etc.) and then find some excuse to shut him down.
chris.herring: Yeah. Porzingis probably wasn’t going to play for NYK this year. Maybe he gets into a few games for Dallas, but I doubt it.
natesilver: Yeah, they might as well tank too. Maybe not an outright tank, but they do keep their own pick if it’s 1-5.
chris.herring: If you’re the Mavs, this makes sense. You’ve still got Harrison Barnes under contract making a lot of money. Hardaway is under contract a couple more years.
tchow: “Makes sense” is such an understatement here.
natesilver: Don’t the Mavs have space for a max free agent too?
chris.herring: I don’t think so? Not with all the money they just took on.
The 12 teams with projected cap space will now likely shrink to 11 with the Mavericks coming off the board. The Hardaway Jr./Lee/KP additions will put the team over the cap heading into the summer.
This trade was their free agency, in a way. Dallas very quietly just hit us with a Nash/Dirk redux. Except Luka can score better than Nash, and Porzingis can defend.
natesilver: It looks like they should have cap space in 2020-21, though, when the Barnes/Powell contracts all come off the books.
chris.herring: Two or three years from now, they’ll have cap money again, and you imagine players would want to team up with a duo like that.
tchow: (if Porzingis signs)
chris.herring: Porzingis will be 25 in two years. Luka will be 22. Also, can we talk about the fact that the Mavs were at the Garden last night? And Mark Cuban was there. I imagine this topic came up.
natesilver: Ahhh didn’t think about that. But, yeah, it seems pretty weird to think this deal was just conjured up out of thin air.
tchow: They knew. They fucking knew.
chris.herring: Dennis Smith Jr. logged a triple-double.
natesilver: Oh shit!!!!!
tchow: Look at that. That’s a “we’re going to be teammates” handshake.
natesilver: THE FIX WAS IN.
chris.herring: I soooo hope the Knicks — who could’ve drafted Smith but instead took Frank Ntilikina — weren’t enamored by his good game to where they said, “You know what? That sounds good to us.”
tchow: Chris, that is EXACTLY what happened.
chris.herring: What it all comes down to for the Knicks is free agency: If you land two guys who are truly worth it, it’s hard to look back at this and be angry.
tchow: And there is my silver lining.
chris.herring: But for the time being, it is just astounding.
natesilver: The Knicks also haven’t drafted very well. Kevin Knox is regarded as a future rotation piece, if not a star, and I sorta get why because he looks like a good player, but his numbers are unbelievably terrible.
chris.herring: Also: My favorite stat ever, from my Knick beat days: The Knicks haven’t re-signed one of their draft picks on a multiyear deal since Charlie Ward, who they took in 1994. Trading Porzingis keeps that alive.
natesilver: Wow. BASKETBALL MECCA.
tchow: That is insane.
chris.herring: So them wanting to build it through free agency is fitting.
natesilver: I think I have to go to their next home game just to see what a shitshow it is.
tchow: FiveThirtyEight field trip, Nate?
natesilver: I’m down, dude. At least tickets will be cheap.
tchow: Hey, at least we still have Allonzo Trier. And Enes Kanter is back. Things are looking up for the Knicks.
chris.herring: Not that it has any bearing on how this summer pans out. But I think their last four deals for $90 million or more were, in this order: Melo, Amar’e Stoudemire, Stephon Marbury and Allan Houston.
natesilver: I mean, just look at this shit:
tchow: My god that is … depressing.
natesilver: I guess their bigs have been OK? Noah Vonleh and Luke Kornet and Mitchell Robinson?
neil: Ooof, you were not kidding about Knox’s numbers, Nate.
natesilver: Yeah, Neil, and it’s not just some advanced stats thing. He’s shooting just 37 percent. Just 4.2 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 0.6 steals and 0.3 blocks per game. For a guy who’s pretty athletic, that’s kind of sad.
natesilver: Knox has a nice-looking 3-point stroke, and I guess you can say he’d get the numbers up if they weren’t tanking. That’s what’s a little hard to figure out on a team like the Knicks where they basically don’t have any incentive to work in their shot selection or to play defense.
tchow: If this is just going to become a shitting on Knox chat, I think it’s time to end it.
natesilver: I’m happy to also shit on other Knicks.
tchow: Just for fun, to end this chat, should we all say who we think won this trade?
chris.herring: Assuming the Knicks don’t land two absolute studs in FA, the Mavs.
natesilver: It’s clearly a good trade for Dallas. Where it ends up on the spectrum from “terrible” to “OK” for the Knicks depends on the draft picks and, yeah, the free agent situation.
chris.herring: Agreed, Nate. You just paired two of the best 25-and-under players in the league together. It could turn out to be a home run for both sides. I just don’t have that level of faith that everything will go right for New York.
natesilver: There is a downside risk with Porzingis, too, which is that he’s never really healthy again. But you do have a year to evaluate him before making a commitment. So the fact that he’s not looking to sign a long-term extension right away is both a bug and a feature.
chris.herring: I guess.
neil: And given the lengths we’ve seen teams go to just to have a chance to get a franchise-altering star, it seems worth it.
chris.herring: I’d be OK with that gamble if it means giving up DSJ and a pick. Dallas has always been willing to roll the dice on acquiring a star.
tchow: You know who won? NBA Twitter won cause this is going to provide so much content for the next few days/until Anthony Davis gets traded.
chris.herring: They even traded Tyson Chandler the summer after he was the linchpin to their title because they thought it’d allow them a chance at a star. They wanted to clear space.
neil: The NBA needs to push its trade deadline further from the Super Bowl.
Wait your turn, NBA! You’ll have the limelight next week.
There are actually a couple lists of tools on this page. Check them out and come back for more in the future. What you wont find in this list is a tool that has asked or paid or communicated with me concerning the list. This is an honest collection of what I want to keep links too. If you want to be on the list feel free to maybe comment? If I find it useful and use it I’ll add a link. Otherwise maybe someone else will like it from your comment link and they can make there own list. 🙂
Over 50 SEO Tools, Mostly Free
As I go through my SEO day I type the same addresses over and over to get to a collection of useful tools. So I decide to post them as links once and for all, for my own benefit but also for others who may come here for a backlink indexer but find there isn’t one … but there is a list that includes one of the best.
A quick highlight of some of the tools and how I plan to build on this simple list. First, I’ll address the second thing I noted…I plan to build the list out from its initial 52 to hopefully a hundred with the promise I’m not just adding crap tools or duplicate tools over and over. Now as a highlight of some of the best tools on this list I’ll put some details in the coming weeks in a section below the list. There is also another mini list that includes tools for text and html below the main list.
You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.
‘Less than 50-50’
President Trump pegged the chances that a new group of 17 House and Senate members would be able to forestall another government shutdown by crafting a deal in the next three weeks at “less than 50-50.” [The Wall Street Journal]
4 product categories
(Sponsored by Mott & Bow) For many men, a t-shirt, a button down and a pair of jeans go a long way, but not all manufacturers think in terms of style and variety. Fortunately, one brand offers numerous options across 4 product categories. Their premium denim comes in 3 fits and over 10 washes, their button downs come in 4 colors and 2 styles with 2 collar options. And their tees, which they say are the “softest tees you will ever wear,” come in 2 sleeve lengths and 10 colors. With this many possibilities, it won’t be hard to put together a seemingly unlimited number of outfit options for work, weekends and more.
$3 billion lost
The five-week government shutdown cost $11 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The CBO projected that $8 billion of that will be recouped during the rest of this year, while $3 billion will never be seen or heard from again. [Politico]
84 percent of firms
The White House hoped its huge $1.5 trillion tax cut package, which reduced the corporate tax rate, would “boost business spending and job growth.” However, 84 percent of respondents to a poll from the National Association of Business Economics said that the package “has not caused their firms to change hiring or investment plans.” There were exceptions: Fifty percent of goods-producing respondents did say that they’d increased investment. [Reuters]
More than 70 percent of House members
The House of Representatives is, ostensibly, representative. I mean, it’s in the name. But its members tend to follow specific and elite career paths before joining the body. More than 70 percent of current House members, for example, were lawyers in private practice, businesspeople or medical professionals. As a result, the House is “much, much richer than the people it represents.” [The New York Times]
3 dead, 172 hurt
A rare tornado — the first in decades, apparently caused by a cold front hitting Cuba’s northern coast — touched down in Havana. The Category F3 storm, with winds between 155 and 199 miles per hour, killed at least three people and injured 172. [Associated Press]
Yesterday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders held her first press briefing in 41 days. The gap was the longest in the history of the administration. President Trump had told Sanders “not to bother” with the briefings. [Fox News]
Love digits? Find even more in FiveThirtyEight’s book of math and logic puzzles, “The Riddler.” It’s in stores now! I hope you dig it.
If you see a significant digit in the wild, please send it to @ollie.
Tracert is a command thats elementary to networking and computers. Trace Route or Tracert does exactly what it sounds like, and its useful cause it tells ya every ip address it passes through between the server and the catcher (not technical terms there). It explains where speed issues are in a global perspective or in your home.
Its usually just text but https://www.monitis.com/traceroute/ made it more fun…and from this map I can see why my fiber connection isnt seemingly very fast tonight, I’m being routed through London, England to do a domestic “hop” (hops are each leg of a journey in a tracert.