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# New York Times, Thursday, April 13, 2017

 Author: Michael Shteyman Editor: Will Shortz
TotalDebutLatestCollabs
552/13/200111/11/20176
SunMonTueWedThuFriSatVariety
336717694
ScrabbleRebusCirclePangram
1.62524

## This puzzle:

Rows: 15, Columns: 15 Words: 74, Blocks: 42 Missing: {JQX} Spans: 1 This is puzzle # 53 for Mr. Shteyman. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Michael Shteyman notes: This puzzle went through many transformations (e.g., TRIPLE[OT] and even 3OT serving as possible revealers) before I settled ... more
Michael Shteyman notes:

This puzzle went through many transformations (e.g., TRIPLE[OT] and even 3OT serving as possible revealers) before I settled on the final set of theme answers. Not too proud of ESTS, RECT and [OT]ROS congregating in the bottom right, but that corner was just a big bad bear to fill, even with an extra black square at the end of 51-Across. Overall, I'm pretty happy with how the rest of the puzzle turned out.

Will and Joel smoothed out the solve by tightening a lot of the clues, though I do wish some of my attempts at being cute also made it to print: "Barely show?" for FLASH, "Call it a knight?" for SIR and "Medium for a musician?" for MEZZO. Maybe next (over)time.

Jeff Chen notes: TRIPLE OVERTIMES = entries with three OT rebus squares apiece. There was something so pleasing about the OT x OT x OT alternation in ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

TRIPLE OVERTIMES = entries with three OT rebus squares apiece. There was something so pleasing about the OT x OT x OT alternation in DOT DOT DOT and HOT TO TROT. Very fun.

GOT TO THE OTHER SIDE … this one didn't hit for me, as it felt like a truncated punchline. With four featured themers, it would have been great to get a little more zip to this one.

A bunch of nice bonus fill, PUMP IRON, SALSA DIP, I THINK NOT, OTTER POPS all excellent. I liked that those last two included some of the OT squares; a nice touch. Often, the crossing answers to rebus themers can be a bit neutral to dull (OTTOS or OTROS, e.g.) so I enjoy when a rebus constructor goes the extra mile to work in snazzy crossing answers.

I finished with an error, AMOCA / OTRAS instead of AMOCO / OTROS. Peeved me at first, but I think it's probably fair — more my being careless than anything. OTRAS / OTROS is ambiguous, but AMOCO was a big company after all … and the CO = company should have been a dead giveaway. SHOOT!

Some blips in the short fill in IGOT OYE ESTS ZBAR (if I as a mechanical engineer struggles with this …), causing me some AGITA. Not unexpected given all the crossing themers.

The only place that I thought really suffered was the lower right, which Mike already called out. Not surprising given the TRIPLE OVERTIME / HOT TO TROT crossing causing so much inflexibility. ESTS / OTTOS / OTROS / AMOCO / RECT ... oof. Perhaps moving the three black squares at the end of FLASH down one row would have helped, but that could have easily created more problems.

As a basketball fan, I liked the solve. Would have been nice to get an extra layer of a-ha, but I'm not sure what that could have been.

 1I 2P 3A 4D 5S 6P 7Y 8S 9I 10M 11B 12A 13B I G OT 14S H O O 15A T E A M 16E N I D 17M O O D 18L H A S A 19G OT T OT 20H E OT H E 21R S I D E 22S A D A T 23L O A N 24OT T A 25W 26A 27E D K 28O 29C 30H 31G 32A 33P 34N A L 35A 36I N S U M 37O N E 38P 39OT A T OT W 40O P OT A T O 41S T R U T 42T O O N 43Y E S 44H I T M E 45N 46F L A 47S 48H 49P R I 50M 51L I OT 52T 53A 54T 55R I P L E 56O 57V E R T I M 58E 59C A I R O 60Z B A R 61OT T O S 62U P T O P 63Z E S T 64R E C T 65B E A N S 66O Y E 67OT R O S
© 2017, The New York TimesNo. 0413 ( 24,628 )
 Across Down 1. Popular tablet : IPAD5. Peeper : SPY8. Famous feline of film : SIMBA13. Close-minded sort : BIGOT14. "Away!" : SHOO15. Elite crew : ATEAM16. It's an OK city : ENID17. What an emoji might indicate : MOOD18. Capital more than two miles above sea level : LHASA19. Made it across : GOTTOTHEOTHERSIDE22. 1970s North African leader : SADAT23. ___ shark : LOAN24. Major tributary of the St. Lawrence : OTTAWA27. Three-term Big Apple mayor : EDKOCH31. Breach : GAP34. 8-Across's mate : NALA36. Altogether : INSUM37. Start of a counting rhyme : ONEPOTATOTWOPOTATO41. Auto stabilizer : STRUT42. One drawn to kids' entertainment? : TOON43. "No doubt about it" : YES44. John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson, in "Pulp Fiction" : HITMEN46. Instant : FLASH49. Demure : PRIM51. Ray of "GoodFellas" : LIOTTA54. Uncommon period in basketball ... or a hint to 19- and 37-Across and 4- and 48-Down : TRIPLEOVERTIME59. "Raiders of the Lost Ark" destination : CAIRO60. Letter-shaped construction piece : ZBAR61. Chemistry Nobelist Hahn and others : OTTOS62. Request for a high-five : UPTOP63. Kick or punch : ZEST64. Door shape: Abbr. : RECT65. Protein source for a vegan : BEANS66. Jorge's "Hey!" : OYE67. Not estos or esos : OTROS 1. "___ of you ..." : IBEG2. Alternatives to cabs : PINOTS3. Butterflies, so to speak : AGITA4. Continuation indication : DOTDOTDOT5. "Darn!" : SHOOT6. "Fiddlesticks!" : POOH7. Swiss air lines? : YODEL8. Party bowlful : SALSADIP9. "Doubtful" : ITHINKNOT10. Honey brew : MEAD11. Ignoble : BASE12. Org. with the Rod of Asclepius in its logo : AMA14. So-called "father of Czech music" : SMETANA20. Magician's prop : HAT21. Caviar : ROE25. Power bit : WATT26. Many : ALOTOF28. Anthem opener : OSAY29. Smart-alecky : CUTE30. Employer-offered plans, for short : HMOS31. "My oh my!" : GOSH32. ___-inflammatory : ANTI33. Sassy : PERT35. Reveille no-show : AWOL38. Do some heavy lifting : PUMPIRON39. Frozen treats with "six zippy flavors" : OTTERPOPS40. Watchful : ONALERT45. It's nothing, really : NIL47. "My dear man" : SIR48. Eager : HOTTOTROT50. Certain opera singer, for short : MEZZO52. Strength of a solution, in chemistry : TITER53. Bygone fuel giant with a torch in its logo : AMOCO54. Stick with it : TAPE55. Actress Moreno : RITA56. Comply with : OBEY57. Piece in many a still life : VASE58. Ballpark figs. : ESTS59. New reporter : CUB

Answer summary: 6 unique to this puzzle.

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