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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Saturday, May 24th, 2008 - Stanley Cup Starts Tonight!

Toronto FC travel to face DC United in the back end of a rare home-and-home series. Kick off is 7:30, coverage on Rogers SportsNetKC Royals reliever Yasuhiko Yabuto (his last name is pronounced Yah-BOOT-ah) has picked up the nickname "Shake". Think about it…that whole Stanley Cup thing will finally get under way tonight. They were almost off long enough for the Leafs to make a hiring…while listening to the "Drive This" podcast and going through a Tim Horton's drive through, the Raging Redhead Cam Stewart unleashed a flurry of f-bombs. The look on the face of the girl bringing me my coffee was priceless…before Raptors fans get too moist about the #17 draft pick, remember that they once drafted Joey Graham at #16. Hate to ruin your day...after a 9-0 beatdown of the Belleville Bulls, the hometown Kitchener Rangers will face the Spokane Chiefs tomorrow in the Memorial Cup final...the 2010 World Cup might be yanked from South Africa. The U.S. is a very likely candidate to play host in a pinch...have to admit, I'm mildly surprised that as many are taking Pittsburgh to win in the poll as they are. Thought the vast majority would be riding Detroit...Joey Porter thinks there should be an asterisk for the New England Patriots victories. I would love to hear him say that no team he's been a part of has ever bent the rules to get an edge. No such team knockouts go, this is a gem...did you catch Tito Ortiz' shirt at the weigh in for tonight's UFC 84? "Dana White Is My Bitch". In the main event, I'm going to take BJ Penn over Sean Sherk. Any fight that BJ looks interested in and fit for is one he wins...have a great Saturday.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday, May 23rd, 2008 - Derek Jeter's Black Book Is Bigger Than Yours

So after taking money that would essentially tie him to an agent, hoops phenom O.J. Mayo has severed ties with that agent. Something tells me that Mr. Mayo is a man that plays by his own rules...after head hunting in a game the Yankees were getting killed in, LaTroy Hawkins has been suspended for four games. That makes four Yankees suspended this year for various what hat does Mike Piazza wear into the Hall of Fame? LA Dodgers or New York Mets? I know it isn't Florida Marlins...under cruel and unusual punishment: slo-pitch games starting at 10:15 with five degree temperature. The digits thawed out just in time to write this piece...the LA Galaxy are now in the running to land Thierry Henry...after two blown home run calls - both were out and not judged so, and both at Yankee Stadium - MLB is contemplating adding instant replay to clarify such calls when needed. To the geniuses (read: boneheads) arguing it would lengthen the game, certainly no moreso than the five minutes of arguing with managers does. And why exactly is that even allowed?...who is the lady on the right? Minka Kelly, from Friday Night Lights. Also, Derek Jeter's latest flame...Tito Ortiz is contemplating starting his own MMA promotion? If he's bringing his girlfriends cash to the table - Jenna Jameson - he'll have considerable backing. The smart money is on Mark Cuban, looking to give it a go...Joe Paterno, who is older than God, says the NCAA should eschew tradition in football and have a full on playoff to determine its champion. If that guy gets it, what is stopping it from happening?...turns out the Boston Celtics are beatable at home, and the Detoilet Pistons are heading home tied 1-1...two teams Mats Sundin was rumored to be traded to at deadline time: Pittsburgh and Detroit...have a great Friday.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Thursday, May 22nd, 2008 - Red, Red, Knocks 'em Dead!

As predicted here, Manchester United won the Champions League over Chelsea. Looked like the game would be put away in the first half with several great chances for United, only to be stoned by Petr Cech. The second half was very much Chelsea's. Overtime saw some great chances for both, and also was noteworthy for Didier Drogba - is it always someone of French extraction? - taking a run for the Dumbest Player In A Big Game title by getting a red card for slapping Nemanja Vidic moments from the end with Drogba surely in line to take a penalty kick if it went that far, which it did. Not a great way to ever settle a title, but them's the rules, and not sure there are better alternatives. The field was a disaster, as mentioned in this space earlier this week...Jason Taylor is going to boycott camp? This is turning into some staredown between he and the Fish...if you are looking for where the Roger Clemens and Mindy McCready story originated, I'm going to suggest you look at Double M. She's got a movie coming out, after all, and "her side of the story" is being teased for the movie...the NFL is contemplating dropping one exhibition game and adding a regular season game. This needs to is all but a done deal that the NHL's Winter Classic is going to Chicago. Overly protective Yankee fans - and in this case, I wasn't one of them - can breathe a sigh of relief. Now, it looks like a meaningless game against Baltimore will close the Stadium...Dany Heatley and Jason Spezza like the idea of Pat Burns as the next Sens coach. That might be reason enough to leave Burns out of the running. With their contracts, those two are already far too comfortable...The Spokane Chiefs, now playing for the Memorial Cup, are owned by George Brett and his brother. Yes, that George Brett...speaking of the Memorial Cup, it'll be Kitchener vs. Belleville on Friday in the semis, the rubber match in their apparent best-of-9 series going back to the OHL Championship. All tied at 4...interesting to note some of the names the Maple Leafs could've taken in previous drafts. And by "interesting", I mean "h0ly hell are they inept" could I have not taken Ted Kennedy in my Death Pool this year? Should've been so obvious...two games back, two bombs for A-Rod...Joba Chamberlain will be starting sooner rather than later for the Yankees. The process to make it happen has poll time, Stanley Cup Final, who ya got?...Jeremy Roenick will return to San Jose for his 20th NHL season. Sports reporters and bloggers everywhere should rejoice. Love me some J.R...the heat between BJ Penn and Shawn Sherk-roids is cranking up ahead of what should be a great main event at UFC 84 on Saturday. Since I know Sherk can take bombs, I'm taking BJ Penn, who can twist concrete into a pretzel...good week for predictions, what with San Antonio Spurs, Manchester United and Toronto FC all coming through. May have to make this a subscription site if this keeps up!...have a great Thursday.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Manchester United Wins!!

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008 - Champions League Final!

Finally, the Champions League final is upon us and of course, I'm picking Manchester United to knock off Chelsea. Just more quality overall, and the strength of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic in the middle is the difference. But, any time you're in a big game against Michael Ballack, Didier Drogba and Joe Cole, it isn't going to be easy. The field won't help either. The ESPN SoccerNet podcast says the field is a disaster, uneven and coming apart at the yet-to-take-root seams. Game time is 2:45pm (Eastern) on TSN...St. Louis Cards (former) closer Jason Isringhausen punched a TV after losing his closers job and is now on the DL. I know baseball players aren't brain surgeons but they might want to find another way to vent their frustrations without damaging a hand. Those tend to be in important in that game…for some reason, Sens fans are bent that Dany Heatley went wild at the World's…funny how much talk to A-Rod "sleep over" comment got last spring in reference to Derek Jeter, but Jason Giambi mentions sharing underwear with Jeter and the story leaves as quick as it arrives. Just goes to show how big any A-Rod/Jeter story is...the New Jersey Nets are not only said to be in talks for Carmelo Anthony but also in "more substantive" discussions for one Andrea Bargnani of the Raptors...regular reader Bukakke revealed that King/Commissioner William Regal has been suspended from the WWE for drugs. If you've seen Regal, you can assume he's not hitting the 'roid Jason Taylor finished second on Dancing With The Stars. Wonder if Bill Parcells will hold that against him?...Toronto FC host the fading DC United, who laid a 4-0 beatdown on the Reds earlier this year. TFC settles the score tonight with a win. Kickoff is 7:30 on The Score...have a tremendous Wednesday.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Tuesday, May 20th, 2008 - Who Cares About the WNBA?

As of yesterday, with Justine Henin's retirement, Maria Sharapova is now #1 in women's tennis. I've been saying she's #1 in women's tennis for some time...the May 19th issue of Sports Illustrated ran something of a preview for the coming WNBA season - yes, it still exists. Wonder if anybody bothered to read it?...the same issue also ran a players poll on the best pitching staffs in baseball. Somehow the Detoilet Tigers captured 17% of the vote to finish 3rd behind Boston and Arizona. This must be a pre-season poll. I'd have Arizona leading followed by Toronto and Cleveland...the Saputo Stadium in Montreal, home of the Impact, looks MLS ready from what I saw on SRC yesterday. Their lineup? Not so much...there won't be much of Moscow left standing Wednesday with the Champions League final starting at 10:45pm local time. I've sprinkled some on Manchester United to lift the big it'll be the team thought too old as the season started against the team thought too young for the Stanley Cup…it has been well established that I love Charles Barkley, but I don't believe for a second his claim that he is done gambling, especially when he says he's quitting for "the next year or two"…after 44 games, Jason Giambi has more home runs (8) than he does singles (7). He's also one double from having as many doubles as singles...San Antonio vs. LA Lakers and Detroit vs. Boston are your conference finals matchups in the NBA. I like LA and Detroit. Who ya got? There's a poll at the right...the upside of the World Hockey Championships being over: the return of Pardon the Interruption...what a disaster my baseball pool is this year. I trade for A-Rod, he gets hurt the next day. I drop Jon Lester, he gets a no-hitter a week later. The Midas Touch, I have not...have a great Tuesday.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Monday, May 19th, 2008 - Mechanical vs. Chemical - is there a difference?

Easy for Elvis Stojko to say Canadian Olympians should boycott the Beijing games this summer. Wonder if he'd feel the same way if his turn was just coming up?...and about double amputee Oscar Pistorius, from South Africa, who will be allowed to attempt to qualify for the Olympics. Now, the P.C. Police won't like this, but if he's got a "mechanical" advantage like some scientists say, then how is that allowed but a chemical advantage is not?...a two goal lead in the third period was not enough in yesterday's Gold Medal game at the World's. Not to play Monday Morning Quarterback, but what was with Cam Ward starting? Didn't Pascal Leclaire go in the semis?...still, good on Russia for being both the reigning World Hockey champion and reigning Euro Basketball Champ. Had to mention that for the old school RaptorsChat readers...hard to believe that a guy that has won as many games as Marty Turco didn't win his first in Detoilet until this past Saturday, now making him 1-9-2...for all the love people (read: Leafs Fan) shower on Gary Roberts, who might be the most overrated player in Leafs history in my book, his history of injuries and missed games sure gets downplayed if not ignored altogether...some QB's take their offensive lineman out for dinner, buy them watches or other nice gifts. Tom Brady buys his guys Audi Q7's. Wow...word is Mike D'Antoni, the new Knicks coach, is not a big fan of David Lee, Renaldo Balkman or Randolph Morris...Game 7 between the San Antonio Spurs and New Orleans Hornets tonight will complete the final four picture in the NBA. I'd love to see the Hornets do it to see more of Chris Paul, and even to see Her-Pete advance, but hard to bet against the Spurs in any must-win game...if there is a Monday Night Raw god, Umaga won't appear tonight...have a great Monday.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday, May 18th, 2008 - Go Canada Go!

As I've only seen bits and pieces of the World Hockey Championships, it is fitting this clip came to me a couple days after it happened. Not sure what is more surprising, a fight at the World's, or that the Finnish player wouldn't drop his stick. Be sure to watch to the end, he's seriously menstruating from his face...Canada faces Russia today at 12:30 for gold, on TSN...former NBA ref Tim Donaghy bet on over 100 games. No pun intended, but I'm betting he did better than the average punter, for reasons obvious...the Cleveland Cavaliers have forced game 7. Me suspects that they just might pull it out in Boston...Ken Griffey Jr. lost a bet to teammate Josh Fogg for $1500. He paid him in pennies. The boxes weighed over 900 pounds...when Jason Giambi is slumping, he wears a leopard skin coloured thong. Here's hoping he's got several pairs because I'd hate to think he's worn the same pair the last 6 weeks...the Dallas Stars are going home to host game 6 after winning in Detroit yesterday. Here's hoping it goes 7...Toronto FC remain undefeated at home after a scoreless draw with first overall Columbus Crew. They deserved better in a game that they dominated for the most part...Ryan Braun, Hanley Ramirez, Miguel Cabrera and more young talents are all signing extensions into their free agency years. The way it is going, only Scott Boras clients will be free agents, young and talented...have a great Sunday. GO CANADA!