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October 01, 2015

Fantasy Football Picks: Week 4

Last week was insane. It felt as if so many players went off and scored plenty of points for their respective fantasy teams. I wasn't one of those teams, but it's alright. There's always another week until there isn't. I was still able to put up a good amount of points in Draft Kings, so at least I had that. Also, I am very proud of my AJ Green pick, as he hasn't done so well this year and many experts were low on him. Anyways, let get to this weeks picks.

Matt Ryan:

He has been very solid for the first 3 weeks and he should be just that against the Texans week 4. Julio Jones and Ryan have connected plenty of times and I expect that to continue. If you are able to find a good lineup with these two in it, then by all means this is the stack you want to have. Matt Ryan price isn't very cheap, but he's not too expensive either. Add him to your lineups without a worry at your QB position.

Draft Kings price: $6,9000

Randall Cobb:

Jordy Nelson, injured. Davante Adams (sigh), injured. Randall Cobb is cheap as a WR1 and he's going to explode. He had 3 TDs last week and I would expect him to have a stellar game this week against the 49ers. Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald tore the Niners weak defense apart. With Aaron Rodgers and Randall Cobb, you get an upgrade at both positions against the same weak defense and you're going to see huge numbers. Get him in your lineups.

Draft Kings price: $7,400

Amari Cooper:

Another Raider in my weekly picks. I don't care. Cooper looks like a star. He is a star. His route running is crisp and he can run with the ball after the catch with the best of them. He's playing against a Chicago Bears secondary that can be seen on box cartons because they've gone missing. His price is great for the numbers he puts up and he's got big play potential.

Draft Kings price: $6,300

Frank Gore:

Old man Gore. I'm getting him in my teams because I expect the Colts to run the ball a lot against the lowly Jaguars. Andrew Luck is also beat up, but he should get his as the Colt stomp on the Jaguars. I think. I mean, c'mon they can't suck THAT much can they? PIck Gore up, he's cheap and he'll get at least one score for you and 100 total yards.

Draft Kings price: $4,700

Matt Forte:

I feel like this is a safer pick for your lineup than many will think. The Bears had success running the ball against Green Bay in week 1. Forte was of course a huge part of that. They controlled the clock, still lost, but they limited the Packers for the most part. The Bears have Alshon Jeffrey back (I think), so defenses have to play more honest against them. Forte is playing against a so-so defense in the Raiders. Not sure if the Bears will win, but Forte should put up good points for your team, and he has the potential to score big points as well.

Draft Kings price: $7,100

Bonus Pick - Karlos Williams:

No LeSean McCoy or Sammy Watkins. The Bills are led by Tyrod Taylor who has been surprising everyone. I expect the Bills to lean on Karlos Williams this game to edge them to victory. He has scored a touchdown in every game. I think he'll do just that against the Giants who aren't a good run defense at all. Write him up for 110 yards and a score.

Draft Kings price: $3,400

This week is a little tougher to make a lineup for as there are teams on bye week, but there will be stand out players that will make your team score big. I hope these picks help you guys out with that. Good luck.

Hauk Vagner

 

September 30, 2015

Top 10 Nike Dunks

Those of you familiar with our blog, would know that we have our fair share of sneakers. I wouldn't necessarily camp outside for a fresh pair but I would definitely spend a good amount of time online to find a pair I really want. One of my favorite silhouettes is that of the Nike Dunk. The Dunk family has a retro aesthetic but its super versatile, high-top, low-top, various materials, and it was even adopted by Nike's SB division. Its lineage is that of a basketball shoe, however today it has evolved into a staple of not only streetwear but fashion. In no particular order, here is my top ten all time versions of the Nike Dunk.

Nike Dunk Hi Gray Denim

This Dunk in particular pays homage to denim's heritage by having a French flag on the heel tab along with a rooster emblem which is the symbol of the French Football Federation. For those of you who don't know, denim originated in France. The word 'jeans' derived from the phrase “Bleu de Genes” which translates to “Blue of Genoa”.  

Nike Dunk Hi X Stussy World Tour Collection

Stussy and Nike are two of the most recognized names in their industries. The two titans collide to make a solid collaboration. The texture on the shoe is inspired by the patterns on the classic Stussy World Tour T-shirt. The Ostrich leather swoosh along with the combo of Olive Green and Red make this a must have.  

Nike Dunk OMS (Off-Mountain Series)

This Dunk in particular displays the versatility of the silhouette. This is like the Nike Dunk's cousin who's on steroids. This came in a few colorways however my favorite is the one pictured which is Black, Anthracite & Atomic Green. This model also features 'boot-qualities' such as waterproof layered overlays set against layered nylon along with metal boot lacelets. The Dunk OMS is ready to handle the elements. 

Nike Dunk Hi Iron Tweed

Harris Tweed is the best. It is made from pure virgin wool dyed and spun in the Outer Hebrides. It is strictly made by hand on an island that is a part of Scotland and given a label to officially certify that it is indeed Harris Tweed. There is an actually Harris Tweed Authority that must approve all commercially made Harris Tweed. I could go on and on about how awesome Harris Tweed is. Combining the Nike Dunk with Harris Tweed is basically combining two of my favorite things in life. Nike perfectly executes applying a luxurious garment to the retro basketball sneaker. Brilliant!

Nike Dunk Lo Warmth SB

These Dunks feature a wool upper to keep those toes toasty in the winter. I actually copped a pair of these myself. The heathered black and white wool compliments a lot of the outerwear trends and also gives it a high end look. These were also made in a high-top form but I personally like these more as a low-top.   

Nike Dunk Hi Premium Curry

Sometimes less is more. The minimalist aesthetic of these are perfect. This is a super clean design that only comes in one color and the leather ages so perfectly. As much as we like to keep our shoes clean, these honestly get better with age. These were released nearly 12 years ago and they are super hard to come by, definitely one of my favorites. 

Nike Dunk Hi Nylon Vandals

These pairs came in a few colorways but I prefer the Silver/Red Combo. The Vandals featured a nylon upper once again displaying the various texture and fabric that can be applied to the shoe. 

Nike Dunk Hi Salt Stains

This design in particular was inspired by the salt that is dumped on the streets during cold winter months. As a result, everything gets stained a certain way due to rubbing against the salt. Luckily, I have no idea about how salt stains anything because I live in LA where its 80 degrees in December. But I could definitely appreciate the story behind this design, the randomness of the pattern is perfect and what makes it unique is that no two shoes are alike. 

Nike Dunk Lo 1 Piece

The name for these Dunks derives from the fact that the shoe is seamless and all the lines are drawn on, thus the name 1 piece. For some reason this model makes me think of the movie Tron. The bold lines give it a futuristic look. 

Nike Dunk Hi Wu Tang

This is the holy grail for all sneaker heads. There were only 36 of these made representing the Wu Tang 36 Chambers, obviously. These were the original sneakers that made sneakers viewed as a collectable item. This has to be on every list of sneakers that you must own. Unfortunately they are super rare and one recently sold on Ebay for over $10,000. If you ever see someone wearing these on the street, shake their hand and give them at least 30 seconds of eye contact. Also make sure to tell them they are stupid for wearing it because there are people out there willing to pay them a sum of money equivalent to the price of a used car. 

Buddy Bravado

 

  

September 24, 2015

Fantasy Football Picks: Week 3

Fantasy football and reality football have been incredibly cruel to me over the past two weeks. I've gone 1-1 in both of my season long leagues and have only been in the money for 2 contests out of the 10 that I've joined on Draft Kings. I hope it's gone much better for you all. Either way, I still look forward to every weekend for football Sunday. So let's get right to these picks for week 3.

Russell Wilson:

Those who know me, know that I hate Russell Wilson. I just don't like the way he plays the quarterback position. Don't get me wrong, he's a great guy to have in Pete Carroll's system, but I think he wouldn't put up the same numbers in another system. He hasn't been playing well as of late, but I think he'll have a bounce back game against the horrid Chicago Bears defense. Wilson should be tearing up their D on the ground and through the air. Start him with confidence.

Draft Kings price: $7,000

A.J. Green:

He's had a mediocre start to the season. Putting up decent points, but not enough to merit his 2nd round ADP. However, Green is still the number 1 target on his team and he's going up against a Baltimore Ravens defense that just got torched by the Raiders. In daily fantasy sports, it's all about "what have you done for me lately?", so I will say that he will put up some solid points this weekend. Let's stay over 100 yards, 7 receptions, and a score.

Draft Kings price: $7,200

Brandon Marshall:

He's old. He's slow. He gets the job done. Actually, better than that. He's kicking major ass right now. Eric Decker hurt his knee against the Colts last week, which means an increase in trust and targets for Mr. Marshall. He's going up against Philadelphia, which means one of two things: 1) Fitzpatrick scores a couple of touchdowns and hopefully one of them goes to Brandon Marshall or 2) Philly actually plays like how a Chip Kelly offense plays and Fitzpatrick is forced to throw all game long, hopefully to his most trusted target. Get him on your team.

Draft Kings price: $6,200

Amari Cooper:

The Oakland Raiders now have viable options for fantasy football. Amari Cooper is leading those options and he showed his skills off against the Ravens last week. I think he's someone you should target season long, for the right price, and in your DFS lineups this week. They play against the Browns, who have been pretty good defensively, but Joe Haden has been getting torched this year. I'd start Cooper as my WR2/3 and expect low end WR1 production.

Draft Kings price: $6,200

Jamaal Charles:

Maybe the best running back in the league right now, Jamaal Charles should have had an amazing week in week 2, however his fumbles dropped his score and might have been the downfall for many teams. He's got a Monday night matchup against the Green Bay Packers. I don't think the Chiefs will win this win, but I do think that Charles will see plenty of looks as Alex Smith continues being the king of dump offs. Plus, it helps that the Packers rushing defense is so great. Matt Forte went off on them in week 1 and Charles is far more explosive than Forte, so expect some big plays, hopefully one for a touchdown.

Draft Kings price: $7,200

Bonus Pick - Dion Lewis:

He's been tearing it up for the Patriots these past couple of weeks. With everyone focused on Edelman and Gronk, although they're not doing much about those two, Brady is able to make opportunities for the versatile Dion Lewis. He's a solid pick up for season long teams as a flex option. Lewis has RB2 upside, but I would keep a short leash on him as we all know how Belichick is with his running backs.

Draft Kings price: $4,200

That does it for this week. Again, let me know how off I am on Instagram or Twitter. Good luck to everyone. I hope you put up plenty of points on your opponents as long as it's not me. Have a good one.

Hauk Vagner

 

 

September 17, 2015

Fantasy Football Picks: Week 2

With week 1 in the bags, let's move on to week 2. Many injuries happened last week, including a big one in Dez Bryant. I've got him in a league and I wasn't too happy (obviously) with his injury. But, the ball keeps rolling, and we've got to manage our way around these mishaps. Let's get right into these picks.

Nick Foles:

He didn't look like a stud against the great Seattle defense, but who does? Foles hardly has any receiving option that you should add to your season long teams, but he still got the job done by spreading the ball around last week. Not only is he a cheap price, but he's a solid option with a high floor that will net you some decent points, while you can stack the rest of your team. Foles is playing against Washington, who did a good job of getting at Tannehill last week, but that was a very fluky game. Start Foles with confidence this week.

Draft Kings price: $5,500.

Jordan Matthews:

Matthews was the clear cut #1 option for Philadelphia last week. He's a guy you should be targeting in trades and adding to your daily fantasy teams. They're playing against the Cowboys this week in what should be a shoot out. This one is a no brainer. Snatch him up in your daily fantasy leagues and watch your points add up.

Draft Kings price: $7,100.

Mark Ingram:

This is a very obvious pick at running back for daily fantasy leagues, because of the matchup. Ingram is facing the porous Tampa Bay defense. The Bucs weren't able to stop Bishop Sankey last week and they won't stop Ingram this week. Especially for the price he is going - add him to your lineups. He should also be targeted for season long leagues, because the Saints are clearly trying to run the ball.With CJ Spiller always being hurt, go ahead and snatch up Ingram for your teams.

Draft Kings price: $5,900.

Chris Ivory:

This is a riskier play only because he's playing against Indianapolis and Andrew Luck. If the Colts play to their potential and put up a ton of points, then I don't see Ivory being used as much in this game. But if they keep it close and try to manage the clock, expect Ivory to see a ton of opportunities to run the ball. The Colts run D isn't too great, so this play makes sense. For season long leagues, he's a great RB3 with high end RB2 potential. If you've got a lot of depth at RB and need a player at WR, I suggest trading him for one away while his value is still high.

Draft Kings price: $4,700.

Jason Witten:

With Dez Bryant out, the one player who automatically sees more targets is Witten. We saw it first hand during the game last week. The game-winning drive was dominated by Romo and Witten. Expect him to put up plenty of points against Philadelphia. He's a great season long addition and for daily fantasy lineups.

Draft Kings price: $4,300.

Bonus Pick - DeAndre Hopkins:

Hopkins showed us last week that if you just throw the ball in his direction, he'll go up and make the play for it. He's a great season long player and this week he's matched up with a Carolina defense who lost their best player, Luke Kuechly. Expect the Texans to throw the ball a lot, especially because Arian Foster is still not around. I like this kid a lot and he should finish in the top 10 in receiving this year.

Draft Kings price: $7,400.

I hope everyone has a good weekend. Don't go too crazy, like myself, when your teams are doing terrible. Just remember that it's only week 2.

Hauk Vagner

September 10, 2015

Fantasy Football Picks: Week 1

We're big sports fans here at Arka, so I guess you can say that we're excited for football season. Every Thursday, I will be writing about my top 5 picks plus 1 sleeper bonus that you all can add to your season long teams or your daily fantasy lineups. Feel free to call me out on these picks either on Instagram or Twitter.

Sam Bradford:

I've got Ben Roethlisberger in a league and I'm still starting Sam Bradford over him for week 1. Why? Big Ben's got a tough matchup in New England and I also expect Monday night's game (Atlanta Falcons vs. Philadelphia Eagles) to be a shoot out. Add Bradford to your daily fantasy lineups this week for a very cheap price. Because after this week, he won't be going for so low.

Draft Kings Price: $6,900

Davante Adams:

This guy has a lot of talent and should be someone you target for your season long leagues, because he has the potential to make a killing in the redzone. Davante Adams is also going for a super low rate for week 1 in Draft Kings, $4,400. You will never get him that cheap again, especially with Jordy Nelson being out for the year. Aaron Rodgers was raving about the second year wideout and so am I. I love him in this week's matchup against the Chicago Bears, who are horrid on defense.

Draft Kings Price: $4,400

Dez Bryant:

Dez is an obvious choice here, but I want to let you know that in season long leagues, he is someone who can win you matches week in and week out. With no DeMarco Murray, and no real decision on who the starting running back is going to be, Dez Bryant is going to kill it this season. For week 1, he's going the New York Giants. It sucks that Odell Beckham can't play on both sides of the ball, because he's all the Giants have. The Giants are terrible on defense, lacking a pass rush with no JPP, and any time of good coverage defensive back. Dez Bryant doesn't come cheap, he definitely never will, but he's a stud and you shouldn't be frugal when picking your lineups.

Draft Kings Price: $8,700

Jeremy Hill:

Many people have Jeremy Hill just outside the tier 1 of this year's running backs. I have him inside the top 5 this year and you should see him in that light as well. Sadly, I wasn't able to get him in any of my season long leagues, but for this week especially, he's going up against the Oakland Raiders and he's going to kill it. Hill has a great offensive line and that Cincinnati Bengals team should put up plenty of points on the Raiders. I know they've got Khalil Mack on the defensive side, but Jeremy should make use of the holes that his offensive line will provide him with.

Draft Kings Price: $7,100

Jonathan Stewart:

Stewart has a great matchup this week against the Jacksonville Jaguars and he should get a bunch of touches all year long. Unfortunately, Kelvin Benjamin is out for the year, and the Carolina Panthers will be lacking their big redzone target. This means more looks for Jonathan Stewart out the backfield. He's very cheap this week on Draft Kings, so be sure to add him to your lineups and watch him run all over the Jaguars.

Draft Kings Price: $5,800

Bonus Pick - Stevie Johnson:

I wouldn't necessarily grab him for a season long league, although he should add good depth to your teams, but for this week I think he's going to do big things. He's cheap this week on Draft Kings and if you're going top heavy with your lineups, Stevie's a good choice to add to your wide receiver or flex position. He's going to be the #2 target on the team as there's no Antonio Gates for 4 games. After those 4 weeks are up, I don't think he will be as productive, so take advantage of him when you can. He's going up against the Detroit Lions, who lost two huge players on their defensive line, Nick Fairley and Ndamukong Suh. With hardly any pass rush, Philip Rivers should have an ample amount of time to make throws.

Draft Kings: $3,700

That's it for this week. Please call me out if you wish. I enjoy the debating about fantasy football. Don't call me out after games though, hindsight is always 20/20. That's just not fair.

Hauk Vagner

September 08, 2015

5 Things That Make Streetwear Huge

The graphic tee:

It isn't necessarily a statement piece, although it can be, but since it usually represents a brand or an idea, the graphic tee is the perfect compliment to an individual's ideas and beliefs. Whether they love a brand and want to wear their logo on their chest or they love what the graphic's message is, graphic tees are a big deal in streetwear and every brand in this genre has a few.

Camo prints:

Hardy Blechman first put out camo prints into Maharishi and the trend blew up. Big brands and small brands, alike, came out with all over camo print shirts, pants with camo, and even hats with camo. The camo pattern gave streetwear a lot of attention and a new light to the industry.

The sneaker:

Sneakerheads can make a big following out of any shoe brand. All they have to do is hype it up themselves and it gets talked about throughout their community. The sneaker is a huge part of streetwear because it's a classic piece that unifies your outfit. It can really make or break what you're wearing. Plus, there are more and more collaborations between shoe brands, like Asics, and streetwear brands like Hood by Air that generate a buzz and hype, which only helps out both sides.

Joggers:

Personally, I'm not a fan of the joggers, but I have to admit that they are a big part of the streetwear genre. They show off your sneakers and depending on the style, can be fashionable. It's on it's way out of streetwear, but I can't deny that it made companies a lot of money and also took them to the next level.

High fashion influence:

Some may be wondering why I wrote this here, but if you've been paying attention a lot of high fashion brands are starting to make streetwear clothing. They're broadening their audience to younger people. Also, they are at a huge advantage because they've already made a name for themselves and have so many resources and designers to make a piece that will not only fit right, but last for awhile. For example, the fishtail concept didn't begin in streetwear. It first came out in high fashion parkas and retailed for a ton of money. Streetwear brands adopted the style and made windbreakers, coats, and tees with it. High fashion is definitely changing the streetwear genre, bringing in a more mature crowd that is fashion conscious.

These 5 things are either bringing hype or have brought a lot of hype to streetwear. If the high fashion brands are spending money into developing streetwear,  it's going to be a quality piece and it's also because streetwear reaches so many people.

 

Hauk Vagner

August 28, 2015

Banksy's Dismaland Now Open

Banksy has officially opened his latest exhibition to the public called "Dismaland". Located in South England, 4000 tickets are available daily and are being sold at $5. 

This appears to be more of Banksy's political humor rhetoric that we are all fans of. Above we have a 2 minute trailer highlighting the "Happiest Place on Earth". Dismaland will be open for a total of 5 weeks. 

@buddybravado

August 27, 2015

Design Spotlight: The Whole World

Throughout the world, on a daily basis, a lot of events take place. This design simply depicts this. Placing the world in the palm of a hand, while explosions, hurricanes, and protests take place, was meant to give this design a sarcastic tone. Not everything that happens is really in our control and this is the message I wanted to get across to people. Sometimes you have to take it easy and not worry about every little detail.
Hauk Vagner
August 24, 2015

The Evolution of Streetwear

Streetwear stands out in the fashion industry. It isn't because it's seen as a youthful, it's because streetwear doesn't care. Ultimately, that's what makes them cool. It's what made Stussy cool when he started selling his signature designs in the 80s. Shawn Stussy simply didn't care. Streetwear embodies the punk scene. It's rebellious and in your face.

There are many mimickers and brands that try too hard, but the soul of streetwear resides in what Shawn Stussy has brought to the game. It doesn't matter if you're a fan of his brand or not, he started it all and continues to kick every other streetwear brand's ass in the industry.

Many relevant brands came out in the 90s that are still known throughout the industry today. Brands like Ecko, Triple 5 Soul, and Freshjive to name a few. Freshjive was the most relevant out of these brands in the industry, because they were the boldest and most clever. Rick Klotz, the founder and artist, always pushed the boundaries of concepts and did it right.

During the 2000s we saw a different type of style come into the streetwear scene. It was moving towards a higher price point and a higher end look. These brands still carried the don't care state of mind that is so popular. LRG, The Hundreds, and 10.Deep emerged onto the scene and haven't looked back. They all sell a lifestyle and the consumers love it because the founders live that lifestyle too. Connecting with the consumer, especially during the 2000s, became crucial to get huge. The Hundreds used the internet to their advantage and gained a following that up and coming brands can only dream of.

Nowadays the graphic tee isn't as big as it once was. It is tough to find a company that completely dominates the graphic tee game because of how saturated it has become. That is why a lot of streetwear brands have gotten into making cut and sew items, such as button ups and parkas, to grow their brand and attract new consumers. It makes sense that the graphic tee isn't as successful for these brands, because as the years passed, both the brand and consumer have grown and matured. Merging the streetwear mentality into a more higher end approach is a great challenge that has made many brands gain an insane following. The one brand that comes to mind is Supreme. Within their own line and their collaborations, they've made items that aren't like any other brand. They're gaining more popularity because of their exclusivity and their style.

Then, there is our brand: Arka. We strive to push the boundaries of what can be put on a graphic tee. Our three designers like to play around with popular beliefs and give it their own twist. We love to use plenty of color coupled with big and bold images to bring our ideas to light. Each design is different than the next, as we do not follow the trend of heavily branding our shirts. Much like what Rick Klotz did with Freshjive in the later stages of his brand, but to a lesser degree. We love to bring smiles to people as much as we love to piss them off.

Streetwear isn't for the faint of heart. It's for people who like to look good, but at the same time, don't care what other people think about them. It's meant for those who take pride in their beliefs as they aim to make a statement about who they are. Even though streetwear is ever evolving, it's mantra will always be the same.

Hauk Vagner

August 12, 2015

Chuck Norris is the Best

Chuck Norris is the best, which is why we have a slight obsession with him. We've blogged about him before, but Chuck Norris deserves to have a blog post every day. He doesn't do push ups, he pushes the earth down. He once visited the Virgin Islands, now its just called The Islands. Chuck Norris can kill two birds with one stone. Anyways, I can go on and on. Below is a video as to what would happen if Chuck Norris was a character in Street Fighter. 

Buddy Bravado

@buddybravado