Saturday, October 22, 2011
After hearing the rumour that Madonna would be the halftime entertainment at the next Super Bowl, Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post wrote: “Hope you’ve got some new material, girl.” . . . It’s Q school time for aspiring golf professionals and Roger Sloan, the pride of Merritt, is in Lantana Texas, next week, while Mitch Gillis of Williams Lake will tee it up in Beaumont, Calif. They are chasing their PGA cards, of course. . . . Winnipeg skip Cathy Overton-Clapham’s rink, with Ashley Howard at third, has been making some noise in this curling season’s early going. Yes, Ashley is Russ Howard’s daughter. “Yes, she yells like him,” Overton-Clapham told the Winnipeg Sun’s Jim Bender. “She’s his clone. She throws like him, too.” . . .
After NFL coaches Jim Harbaugh of the San Francisco 49ers and Jim Schwartz of the Detroit Lions almost turned a postgame handshake into a brawl, Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle noted a few other postgame rituals. About hockey, Ostler wrote, “After playoff games, teams line up and players seem to be shaking hands, although actually they are giving back teeth they’ve acquired during the game. The coaches shake hands with one another and exchange a few words in Canadian.” . . . One more from Ostler: “Weenie Man, the guy who tossed a hot dog at Tiger Woods on the last green at the Frys.com Open, said watching a movie inspired him to do something ‘courageous and epic.’ Mission accomplished! But the man could have displayed epic courage simply by standing along the right side of the fairway on any of Tiger’s drives.” . . .
Here’s a thought from Len Berman of ThatsSports.com: “Another failed drug test, more excuses. Blah, blah, blah. OK, this one is slightly different, it involves goats. It seems two goats, including the grand champion at the Colorado State Fair Junior Livestock Sale, have been disqualified for testing positive. The drug they were given promotes muscle growth. Of course the owner of the goats is appealing, claiming the goats’ feed had been tampered with. How could that happen? Bleats me.” . . . Berman also noted: “One of the rebels who got Moammar Gadhafi was wearing a Yankees cap. The rebels who were wearing Red Sox caps were drinking beer in their bunker during the capture.” . . . Which brings us to the front page — you won’t believe this! — of Friday’s New York Post which carried this headline, in big block letters: KHADAFY KILLED BY YANKEE FAN. . . . The subhead was: Gunman had more hits than A-Rod. . . . Don’t forget the Rugby World Cup wraps up with a game tonight. Will the All Blacks be able to win it for the first time since 1987? . . .
You probably are aware that centre Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, now of the Edmonton Oilers, was credited with his first NHL three-goal game on Saturday in what was his third regular-season game. The gang at Elias Sports has confirmed that is a record for first overall NHL picks. Sheesh, it took Dale Hawerchuk until his eight game with the Winnipeg Jets to score three goals in a game. . . . And what of Wayne Gretzky, you ask? The Great One didn’t score three times in a game until No. 50. . . . How meaningful is this statistic? Well, consider that the immortal Fabian Brunnstrom did it in his first game with the Dallas Stars. . . .
Here’s syndicated columnist Norman Chad, on the woes of the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts: “If Peyton Manning is out for the season and the Colts go 0-16, will he win his fifth MVP?” . . . Could it be that the problem with the Saskatchewan Roughriders and their 1-7 start wasn’t coaching? . . . It’s great that Jack Abendschan is going into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, but pardon me for thinking he had been inducted a while back. For the young ’uns in the audience, Abendschan was an offensive lineman in the Ron Lancaster/George Reed days, and he also handled the placekicking. . . .
The team that has won Game 2 has won every series in this Major League Baseball postseason. Which means the Texas Rangers are in business. . . . In fact, the team that has won Game 3 of the World Series has won 10 of the last 11 championships. So if Texas wins tonight, it’s a lock. Right? . . . While we’re awarding championships, it’s worth noting that the Toronto Maple Leafs are 4-0 against Canadian teams. According to Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun, the last time the Leafs went unbeaten in their first four games against Canadian clubs was 1966-67 — they won three and tied one against the Montreal Canadiens — and we all know how the Leafs fared that spring. . . . After seeing and reading reaction to the death of Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis, Greg Cote of the Miami Herald wrote that Davis “died, and immediately he was a legendary football pioneer and visionary. While still alive, he’d been a confrontational, abrasive meddler whose teams had a record of 39-93 since 2003. Death: The Ultimate Extreme Makeover.” . . .
Rob Vanstone, in the Regina Leader-Post: “The Pats deserve more fan support. Understandably, three consecutive non-playoff seasons will result in a diminution of interest, but the Pats should still be able to draw more than 3,026 people. That was the announced attendance on Oct. 8, when Regina carried a 5-1 record into a Saturday night home date with the Prince George Cougars.” . . . That situation is prevalent in a lot more WHL cities than just Regina, including Kamloops. . . . There are problems in the NHL, too. Even in Boston, where the Bruins’ average attendance through four games was 13,173. Yes, they won the Stanley Cup in June. . . .
Ron Judd, in the Seattle Times: “Seahawks coach/motivational guru Pete Carroll is publicly urging locked-out NBA superstar LeBron James to try out for the team. Don’t rule it out as a mere publicity stunt: James could provide an instant dose of the very sort of self-important arrogance the NFL has been sorely lacking.” . . . One more from Judd: “While You’re At It, Pete: Why not urge Weasel King NBA Commissioner David Stern to come on board as team president? It’s a shame to have such a massive chunk of running-stuff-into-the-ground talent just sitting on the sidelines.” . . .
One week ago tonight, Don Cherry shocked the free world by uttering an apology on Hockey Night in Canada. Because the apology was, shall we say, a bit overdue, the reaction from all corners was swift. The best one came from TSN’s Dave Hodge, a former HNIC employee, who tweeted: “If I wait any longer, it’ll be too late. So . . . I apologize for throwing the pen.”
Gregg Drinnan is sports editor ofThe Daily News. Email him firstname.lastname@example.org, follow him at twitter.com/gdrinnan, or visit his blog at gdrinnan.blogspot.com.Keeping Score appears Saturdays.