Sunday, November 16, 2014
Just the other day, Jack Finarelli, aka The Sports Curmudgeon, came up with a great idea involving pro sports teams and those throwback uniforms. . . . “If the NFL wants to show its ties to the past and to demonstrate some commitment to ‘heritage’ – whatever that might mean – any game using ‘throwback uniforms’ should also occur in a ‘throwback environment’ that would include: 1. Free parking; 2. No more than $2 for a beer or $1 for a soda; 3. No DJ in the stadium creating meaningless noise; 4. No cheerleaders.” . . . Under those conditions, he writes, “I could put up with ‘throwback uniforms’ -- not counting ‘the bumblebees’ -- once a year.” . . . The ‘bumblebees,’ of course, are those hideous Pittsburgh Steelers outfits. . . . As Finarelli puts it, “I would support the NFLPA bargaining against any of its members ever having to appear in public wearing the ‘bumblebee throwback uniform’ that the Pittsburgh Steelers trot out every year. That is a form of public humiliation for union members.” . . .
"I would be very excited about the Winnipeg Blue Bombers bringing back beer snakes next season if I had any idea what a beer snake was," writes Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun. "I’d be more excited if they brought back Dieter Brock." . . . Hey, I'd settle for Ralph Brock. . . . “FIFA (wink, wink) found no irregularities in the way World Cups were awarded to Russia and Qatar, but bid-committee members weren’t available for comment,” reports Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times. “They’d just left on their surprise vacation junkets to Barbados.” . . . Perry also notes that “Mike Vrabel, the Texans’ linebackers coach, lost the three Super Bowl rings he won with the Patriots when burglars broke into his Houston home. Not to cast any aspersions or anything, but how do you say ‘one for the thumb’ in Russian?” . . .
“Lee Chong Wei,, the world’s top-ranked badminton player, has apparently failed a doping test,” writes Janice Hough, aka The Left Coast Sports Babe. “Badminton? Who knew the most honest sport might turn out to be pro wrestling?” . . . Here she is, again: “A new report says a Secret Service agent was chatting on his cellphone while an intruder scaled the White House fence in September. Maybe it’s time to get men out of the Secret Service. Not that women don’t chat. But we can multitask.” . . .
“Doping investigators have now busted curlers, badminton players and golfers,” points out Richmond, B.C., blogger TC Chong. “What’s next? Bowlers and shuffleboard players?” . . . “The Oakland Raiders are 0-9, but head coach Tony Sparano says it’s not too late to save the season,” notes Chong. “With a couple of wins, they could cross over to the CFL East and make the playoffs.” . . . Chong, again: “Charles Barkley can chow down now after saying he wouldn’t eat another meal until the Los Angeles Lakers won. I bet he wouldn’t dare try that with the Raiders.” . . .
Bruce Arians, the head coach of the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, told SI.com that he often uses a baseball analogy in reminding his backup players to be ready. “I always tell the Wally Pipp story,” Arias said, “even though the players never know who he is, that he’s the guy Lou Gehrig replaced and Wally Pipp could never get his job back. The worst part? They don’t know who Lou Gehrig is.”
“CBC Manitoba says a polar vortex continues to chill the Prairies,” reports RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com. “It all started during Selkirk’s Grand Slam curling event with Cathy O on the same sheet as Jennifer Jones.” . . . Here’s Currie, again: “Anaheim Ducks veterans Corey Perry and Francois Beauchemin have been diagnosed with mumps. That's just swell.” . . .
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post kept time near the end of a recent NBA game between the New York Knicks and Detroit Pistons. “The final 42 seconds . . . ran — I kid you not — 20 minutes, 12 seconds!” he wrote. “It took 1,212 seconds to play 42. With 42 seconds left, you could have ordered a pizza, picked it up, driven home and not missed the end!” . . . The way Greg Cote of the Miami Herald has it figured, free-agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval is a lock to sign with the Florida Marlines. Why? “Miami likes his bat,” Cote explains. “Sandoval likes the Marlins’ ‘All You Can Eat Mondays’ promotion.”
(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.)