Friday, July 9, 2010

Keeping Score

Not everyone was enamoured with the Courtship of LeBron. Here’s what three writers had for us before Thursday’s announcement. . . . Tim Keown, at ESPN.com: “The idiocy is what we’ll miss. Once LeBron James announces where he’ll play basketball for the next several years, there will be no more alphabet-based songs from Broadway singers, no more fans spending their own money on billboards, no more guys waxing their chests and devising elaborate handshakes to persuade James to play basketball for their team. The vast, endless stupidity is what separates us from other creatures.” . . . Gregg Doyel, at CBSSports.com: “Even some of you in Cleveland, where you’ve loved LeBron for years, surely have been turned off by the most egomaniacal offseason since Alex Rodriguez’s agent hijacked the 2007 World Series to announce his future plans. This has been worse than A-Rod. This has been worse than the annual offseason Brett Favre retirement melodrama, of which we’re in Summer Six. This has been disgusting. This has been repulsive.” . . . Michael Rosenberg, at SI.com: “LeBron James’ free agency has been the ultimate sports story for the Twitter age: constant updates, very little new information.” . . . So what lasted longer, the Hundred Years War or the Courtship of LeBron? . . . Headline at CBSSports.com: Ego has landed. . . .
Meanwhile, Cam Hutchinson, in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, was pondering: “I am not so sure about the idea of adding video replays to soccer. I really would hate to see the game slowed down.” . . . One more from Hutchinson: “Ten people were arrested in the United States (last) week for allegedly being Russian spies. The 10 denied the charges, saying they were working for Bill Belichick.” . . . Brad Dickson, in the Omaha World-Herald: “(New York) Jets coach Rex Ryan is writing a book about how he became the man he is today. I’m guessing it’s a cookbook.” . . . There is a movement afoot in Saskatchewan to have the Roughriders take 12 Pilsner into their huddle. As one fan put it: “If you don’t get one, get the hell off the field.” . . .
According to Ron Judd of the Seattle Times, those Russian spies leaked some of Seattle’s secrets. Among them: “An impressive 95 percent of the populace supports public transportation as a viable means to move other people from place to place” and “some clown in driver’s ed school is teaching drivers to merge onto the freeway at 14.5 mph.” . . . One more from Judd: “That large oil spill continues to grow, unabated, as hurricane season threatens to spread it all the way to Tacoma. Frankly, we’d have thought CNN’s Anderson Cooper would have handled all of this by now.” . . . You mean he hasn’t? . . . Congratulations to Denise and Ryan Huska on the birth of their son, Luke, who arrived Wednesday night at Kelowna General Hospital. The Huskas also have two daughters. Ryan, the head coach of the Kelowna Rockets, won three Memorial Cups as a player with the Kamloops Blazers. . . . I’m thinking of taking the kids to Sedric’s sometime on the weekend. Are you up to it? . . . Hey, it was to open in late spring 2010. Are we there yet? . . .
Pat Hughes, the voice of the Chicago Cubs on WGN-TV, and partner of analyst Ron Santo since 1966, tells the New York Post’s Phil Mushnick about a trip to New York: “In 2003, we were in Shea, cold April day. Ron got too close to one of those overhead heaters. All of a sudden we saw smoke coming from his head. His hairpiece was smoldering. Had to put it out. When it stopped smoking, he asked, ‘How does it look?’ ‘Not too bad.’ I lied. If he stood in one end zone and I stood in the other, it wouldn’t have looked too bad from 110 yards.” . . . Hughes adds: “Ron gives his hairpieces nicknames. He did the same with his gloves when he played. He had a Gamer when he played, and now, for special occasions, he wears his Gamer hairpiece.” . . .
The people of Chestermere, Alta., which is located a few sheets of curling ice east of Calgary, used the occasion of July 1 to name a street after John Morris, the third on Kevin Martin’s Olympic gold medal-winning rink. So if you drive into Chestermere and end up on John Morris Way, you’ll know all about it. . . . Morris, by the way, is a firefighter in Chestermere. . . . Here’s The Sports Curmudgeon: “Meanwhile in NFL free agent news, Terrell Owens is taking notes regarding the conclusion of the ‘LeBron–a–Thon’ and figuring out how he can schedule his own one-hour announcement program on ESPN.” . . .
Here’s Mushnick on the retirement of Mr. Suspenders: “CNN’s Larry King has announced he’s packing it in. In 1985, some may recall, King was hired as an ‘inside info’ man on NBC’s NFL pregame show. His inside stuff, though, turned out to be mostly old news lifted from newspapers, or bad guesswork, pure nonsense. He did not return in ’86.” . . . The World Cup ends tomorrow. Whatever will we do when the buzzing stops? . . . Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto just may be the National League’s first-half MVP. But it took a special fan vote to get him into the All-Star Game. Maybe those same fans should be running the game. . . . There was a bar brawl somewhere last night. The San Francisco Seals think they were in it. . . . Chris Evert has discussed her split with husband Greg Norman with Woman’s Day. She said she “had no idea it was coming. No idea. It wasn’t talked about, ever. . . . Never in a million years did I imagine it would end up like this.” . . . She also told the magazine that she and Norman won’t ever be friends and that “I . . . really miss Greg’s parents. The best part about him are his parents.”

Gregg Drinnan is sports editor of The Daily News. Email him at gdrinnan@kamloopsnews.ca, or visit his blog at gdrinnan.blogspot.com. Keeping Score appears Saturdays.

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