Sunday, June 1, 2014





Jack Finarelli, aka The Sports Curmudgeon, chimed in on the CFL-CFLPA dispute on Friday. “There is even a dispute between the parties here as to what the average salary per player was last year. The Players Association says it was not $82,904 but was only $71,700. Calculating ‘average salary’ is not exactly a mathematical feat comparable to proving Fermat’s Last Theorem. Therefore, when the two sides perform this mathematical operation and come up with numbers that differ by about 14 per cent, my conclusion is that the two sides would probably not agree that the sun came up in the east this morning even after they called their favourite local weatherman to ask.” . . .

“The Ottawa Redblacks held a ceremony Thursday at TD Place, where a 1976 silver dollar was embedded in the asphalt under the field as a tribute to the last Ottawa team to win a Grey Cup,” scribbles Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post. “Current Redblacks likely paid close attention as the coin was buried. If/when there’s a strike and their source of income dries up, they’re going to need to know where to dig.” . . . “Clay Buchholz recently became the second Red Sox pitcher ever to lose seven pounds in a single appearance,” writes contributor Bill Littlejohn. “The first involved a burglary at Bill Lee's house.” . . .

On Wednesday night, the Los Angeles Kings and host Chicago Blackhawks played what was a terrific Stanley Cup playoff game. If you missed it, and you can bet Bill O’Donovan didn’t, the Blackhawks won 5-4 in double overtime. But it was the first extra period that had fans buzzing. It took only 26 minutes of real time to play the entire 20-minute period. Yes, it was hockey at its best. . . . Meanwhile, the visiting Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers were hooked up in an NBA playoff game. The Pacers won, 93-90. It took eight minutes to play the game’s final 12 seconds. . . . With the NBA draft approaching, Mike Bianchi of the Orlando Sentinel has some advice for the Orlando Magic: “Personally, I believe the Magic should package their No. 4 and No. 12 picks and try to move up in the draft to take Johnny Manziel.” . . .

If you have been paying attention to the NBA playoffs, you know that Paul George of the Pacers suffered a concussion in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final, but was still back on the floor for Game 3. During the regular season, Orlando’s Nik Vucevic sat out 12 games with a concussion. “If you’re tanking, you miss three weeks,” Bianchi wrote in explaining the NBA’s concussion protocol. “If you’re in the conference finals, you miss three days.” . . . “The (Cleveland) Browns supposedly drafted Johnny Manziel after owner Jimmy Haslam heard a homeless man tell him, ‘Draft Manziel,’ ” writes Greg Cote of the Miami Herald. “Cannot confirm the homeless man was a former team sports owner bankrupted by taking personnel advice from homeless men.” . . .

“A clueless French Open reporter congratulated Nicolas Mahut for a match Mahut had just lost,” writes RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com. “He also congratulated the Chicago Cubs on 106 great years.” . . . A Friday night tweet from Ray Ratto of Comcast SportsNet Bay Area: “With apologies to our atheist and agnostic friends, the seventh game is the closest we as a species have come to proving that God exists.” . . . After his Kings lost Game 6, 4-3, to the visiting Blackhawks, forcing a Game 7 on Sunday, head coach Darryl Sutter was asked: “What did you say to the team after the loss?” . . . His response: “We fly at 11.” . . .

If you hadn’t heard, Donald Sterling paid US$12.5 million for the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers in 1981. On Friday, the franchise was sold, pending NBA approval, for $2 billion, which is four times the selling price for any other team. . . . “Because of an illegally recorded private conversation,” notes syndicated columnist Norman Chad, “an NBA owner is forced to sell his team at a 16,000-per cent profit. Only in America.” . . . Bill Plaschke of the Los Angeles Times put it this way: “We all know how Donald Sterling feels about blacks. Now we’ll find out if he has a higher opinion of green.” . . .

Michael Vick, the newest quarterback with the NFL’s New York Jets, has told the New York Daily News that he can help the team get to the Super Bowl. “Apparently,” added comedy writer Jim Barach, “he has a GPS system and a license to drive the bus.” . . . The premier of Turks and Caicos has said he doesn’t have any problems with joining Canada as our 11th province. “Good news,” says Janice Hough, aka The Left Coast Sports Babe. “It would raise the average temperature of Canada by about 10 degrees.” . . .

After the New York Rangers finished off the visiting Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night, Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun pointed out a couple of things via Twitter: 1. At the Olympic break, the Toronto Maple Leafs had a three-point lead over the Rangers; 2. The Maple Leafs took the first Swedish goalie, Mikael Tellqvist, in the 2000 draft. The Rangers, 135 picks later, selected Henrik Lundqvist. . . . “Dale Weise and Alexei Emelin of the Canadiens both sat out Thursday’s game versus the Rangers,” claims Richmond, B.C., blogger TC Chong, “as they wanted to avoid the post-game handshake in case Milan Lucic of the Boston Bruins showed up again.”

(Gregg Drinnan is a former sports editor of the Regina Leader-Post and the late Kamloops Daily News. He is at gdrinnan.blogspot.ca and twitter.com/gdrinnan. Keeping Score appears here on weekends, except when it doesn’t.)

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