Sunday, June 9, 2013






There’s a statue of Bob Uecker outside Miller Park in Milwaukee, so the St. Paul Pioneer Press asked the long-time broadcast voice of the Brewers what it’s like to be so honoured. “Once I get it paid off,” he replied, “I’ll know.” . . . The NBA fined Miami Heat star LeBron James $5,000 for flopping which, as RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com noted, “is one minute seven seconds pay he’ll never get back.” . . . “Did you know,” asks Currie, “roughly five per cent of the world’s ‘healthy’ population hears voices. Honest. A little bird told me.” . . .
It was like something from a bad Saturday Night Live skit as Canada West realigned its men’s and women’s basketball divisions this week, all of it coming into play in 2014-15. Believe it or not, teams from Fraser Valley and Trinity Western aren’t in the same divisions, despite being separated by 21 kilometres. . . . It stands to reason, then, that teams from UVic and UBC would be in the same division as Brandon U. Right? . . . By the time the Canada West pooh-bahs were finished, they had volleyball teams in one 13-team division, basketball teams in two divisions of 11 and six teams, and soccer teams in four geographically driven divisions — two of seven teams for the men, and women’s divisions of seven and nine teams. . . . The basketball realignment obviously has created two tiers. If you’re going to do that, why not go to a relegation system similar to English soccer? Now that would be something worth talking about. . . .
“The headslap was not my invention,” Hall of Fame defensive end Deacon Jones once told the Los Angeles Times, “but Rembrandt, of course, did not invent painting.” Jones died Monday at the age of 74. . . .
“New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, who has yet to play this season due to a bad hip, has sold his waterfront mansion in Miami for $30 million,” writes Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post. “That’s a lot of money for something that just sits there doing nothing — and the same goes for the house.” . . . One more from Hamilton: “Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Ian Kennedy missed his scheduled start Monday after cutting his right index finger while doing the dishes. A knife gashed Kennedy as he groped around in the soapy water. Seems he couldn’t find the plate.” . . .
Mike Lupica, in the New York Daily News: “The most shocking thing about John Tortorella’s firing — and maybe the only shocking thing — is that Tortorella was shocked.” . . . Former Dallas Stars head coach Glen Gulutzan was to meet with Vancouver Canucks management on Friday. You don’t suppose the Canucks would hire Gulutzan, while the Stars would sign former Vancouver head coach Alain Vigneault, do you? . . . You don’t suppose the Dallas and Vancouver owners, who once were partners before it all blew up over the sale of the Canucks, would do something like that, do you? . . .
Joel Figueroa is hoping to earn a spot on the Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ offensive line. He played college football for his hometown Miami Hurricanes and says that Canadians are much nicer people than the folks there. “I get a ‘hi’ here,” he told the Toronto Sun. “In Miami, it’s a ‘hi’ here and there. But over here the people that don’t say ‘hi’ is as many as the people who do say ‘hi’ over there.” . . . Got that? Good. . . . The other night, a fan at a Toronto Blue Jays game held up a sign that read Kawasaki For Mayor. Play-by-play man Buck Martinez didn’t miss a beat. “I think he might have higher goals,” Martinez said. . . . The San Antonio Spurs opened the NBA final with a 92-88 victory over the host Miami Heat. After the game ended, forward Metta World Peace of the Los Angeles Lakers broke it down this way on Twitter: “The Spurs trusted their Cheese Burger. The Heat Cheese Burger was not cooked and the lettuce never showed up.” . . .
After a young man named Arvind Mahankali won the Scripps National Spelling Bee with his final word being ‘knaidel,’ Richmond blogger TC Chong noted: “He said he knew the spelling because Knaidel is his favourite tennis player.” . . . When qualifying was done for this year’s Indy 500, there were five women in the field. To which Late Night host Jimmy Fallon said: “Four women going around and around in circles — or as that’s normally called, The View.” . . .
The game was in the bottom of the 14th inning and the visiting Chicago White Sox had a 5-1 lead over the host Seattle Mariners on Wednesday afternoon. All was well in the world of White Sox broadcaster Hawk Harrelson, the king of the homers. Except that Seattle got a grand slam from Kyle Seager with two out and on a 1-2 count to tie the score. If you weren’t listening, Harrelson greeted Seager’s hit with 40 seconds of silence. Proving, once again, that silence is golden. . . . In the end, though, all was well in Hawk’s world as the White Sox won, 7-5, in 16 innings. . . .
Russian President Vladimir Putin and his wife, Lyudmila, are visiting Splitsville. I bet you didn’t see that coming. . . . Lyudmila reportedly is having trouble finding a lawyer to represent her. . . . Shane Poulsen, an 18-year-old defenceman from Kamloops, will be playing closer to home this season. He played this season with the Trail Smoke Eaters, putting up 22 points in 45 games, but was dealt to the Merritt Centennials earlier this week. . . . Headline at TheOnion.com: John Tortorella Pacing Around Penn Station Screaming At Total Strangers To Clear Puck Into Neutral Zone.

(Gregg Drinnan is sports editor of The Daily News. He is at gdrinnan@kamloopsnews.ca, gdrinnan.blogspot.com and twitter.com/gdrinnan. Keeping Score appears Saturdays, except when it doesn’t.)


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