Saturday, February 12, 2011
The five best words in all of sports: Pitchers and catchers report Sunday. . . . Yes, that would be tomorrow. . . . “Forsberg coming out of retirement!!!” tweets Wes Walz, another retired former NHL player. “I’m sending this message while on treadmill.” . . . After defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh of the Detroit Lions was named the NFL’s rookie of the year, RJ Currie of sportsdeke.com noted: "Not bad for a boy named Suh.'' . . . Here’s Currie, after Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu was named the NFL's defensive player of the year: "Clay Matthews is the hair apparent.'' . . .
A tweet from Steve Martin: "Got some great pictures of paparazzi today. Man, they UGLY! Went through their garbage too. Found my own garbage in their garbage." . . . When the Ottawa Senators dealt centre Mike Fisher to the Nashville Predators on Thursday, the Nashville-based newspaper The Tennessean had this headline on its website: Predators acquire Carrie Underwood's husband. . . . So you send your son to the Kamloops Blazers in hopes of having them make him into an NHLer and he comes home a card-carrying member of the B.C. Liberal party. Which is OK, I suppose, so long as Mom and Dad aren’t life-long NDPers. . . . Gotta wonder how Bernhard Keil explained all of this to his folks in Germany. . . .
Diana Taurasi, one of the all-time best women’s basketball players who tested positive for the banned stimulant Modafinil while playing in Turkey, has denied the charges. Which resulted in Reggie Hayes of the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel scribbling this: “‘There’s no way I’ve ever taken anything,’ Taurasi told the Associated Press before winning the Tour de France, leading the NFL in tackles and hitting three towering homers at Wrigley Field.” . . . The next big day in Canadian sports? Feb. 23. That’s when Manitoba champion Cathy Overton-Clapham meets up with Jennifer Jones’ Team Canada foursome at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Charlottetown. In case you missed it, Jones gave Overton-Clapham the old brushoff at the end of last season. . . .
There was another interesting scrap in the curling world this week when former Daily News sports editor Al Cameron, now with the Calgary Herald, reported that the Brad Gushue-Randy Ferbey experiment had run its course. . . . “He doesn’t relinquish any role (to his teammates),” Ferbey said of Gushue. “He books the flights, he books this, he books that, he books everything. He’s got to give some of that up to other players to make them feel like they’re part of the team. But it’s all him. He sets up everything. It’s not a team, by the definition of the word.” . . . The next day, Ryan Fry, Gushue’s second, wrote that the skip was being “unfairly portrayed by a very immature man in Randy Ferbey. I believe it is time he decided to retire. . . . His recent vent is one that shows his need to stay current in the media in a game that has passed him by. . . . I wish Randy the best and hope maturity comes with retirement.” . . . Yeow! . . .
The over/under for Christina Aguilera singing The Star-Spangled Banner at the Super Bowl was 154 seconds. Unofficially, she finished in, yes, 154 seconds, with one screwed up lyric. . . . There also was an over/under of six seconds for her holding the note on the word ‘brave.’ Bill Simmons of ESPN.com: “She let that ‘brave’ go for so long that it was pretty clear her boyfriend had money on the over.” . . . Mike Lupica, in the New York Daily News: “If I show up in Dallas for Super Bowl L -- that's L for 50, not Losers -- it will be because I took the wrong plane.” . . . One more from Lupica: “This may be slightly off-point, but do you think that's Mubarak's real hair color?” . . .
Between them, Jeff Tedford and Tom Clements quarterbacked for 18 CFL seasons. Tedford is the head coach at the U of California, where Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers played. Clements is the quarterback coach with the Packers. . . . Clements, by the way, now has won two Grey Cups (Ottawa Rough Riders), an NCAA title (Notre Dame Fighting Irish) and a Super Bowl. . . . Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun reports that when Clements was asked for a memorable career moment, he replied: “The (Grey Cup touchdown) pass to Tony Gabriel. Everybody remembers the pass to Gabriel.” . . . Sorry about that, Saskatchewan. . . .
Linden Saip, the 19-year-old defenceman who left the Blazers on Nov. 1, now plays for the BCHL’s Surrey Eagles. He went into the weekend with eight points and 22 penalty minutes in 15 games. . . . Mark Riccobono recently drove around Daytona International Speedway, the site of NASCAR’s Daytona 500. Big deal? Well, Riccobono lost his sight at the age of five. Yes, he drove a specially equipped car, although he didn’t go faster than 25 miles per hour. As Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post wrote: “He’s still expected to finish the Daytona 500 ahead of Dale Earnhardt Jr.” . . . Larry Brooks, in the New York Post: “We see that Chris Simon has won the KHL All-Star accuracy skills competition. Must have been the practise on Ryan Hollweg’s head.”
Gregg Drinnan is sports editor of The Daily News. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow him at twitter.com/gdrinnan, or visit his blog at gdrinnan.blogspot.com. Keeping Score appears Saturdays.