Sunday, December 21, 2014





“New Orleans Saints – 6-8, 1st in NFC South,” wrote Janice Hough, aka The Left Coast Sports Babe, earlier in the week. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m a Saints fan and I love Drew Brees. But normally this level of mediocrity is only rewarded by re-election.” . . . Here’s Richmond, B.C., blogger TC Chong, after the latest Monday Night Football debacle: “After almost 8,000 no-shows at Soldier Field, and another brutal performance, the Chicago Bears will announce Jon Lester as their starting QB in Week 16.” . . . A question from Chong: “Where do all those ugly Christmas sweaters originate? From ugly sheep?” . . .

After the Bears benched quarterback Jay Cutler, Bud Shaw of the Cleveland Plain Dealer explained the move: “The turnovers alone don’t damn him. But when you combine them with the fact that his body language is the quarterback equivalent of Spicoli in Fast Times at Ridgemont High, something had to give.” . . . In what he refers to as a “Special Coded Note to Hackers,” Ron Judd of the Seattle Times writes: “Where were you a year ago, when the 11th mind-numbing season of Grey’s Anatomy was being considered? Or that insufferable Gary Busey ad for Amazon.com? Or Celtic Thunder in all forms? We could go on.” . . . Yeah, there’s the Toyota drum lady and TSN’s fantasy football spots and . . .

“Craig MacTavish is back behind the Edmonton Oilers’ bench,” writes Chong. “A memo was sent out by the league to Harvey the Hound asking him to watch his tongue.” . . . TBS’s Conan O’Brien has had enough. “Crossed Kim Jong-un off my Christmas list,” O’Brien tweets. “You have to take a stand somewhere.” . . . Sy Berger worked for Topps and is considered the father of collectible baseball cards. He died recently at the age of 91. As noted: “He will be laid to rest in a shoe box somewhere in an attic.” . . .

You may have heard about the trucking company employee who drove away in a truck containing US$1.5-million worth of LeBron James 12 sneakers. “It’s the first time someone with LeBron’s shoes has been caught travelling,” notes Vancouver comic Torben Rolfsen. . . . Yoenis Cespedes, the newest Detroit Tigers outfielder, drives a Lamborghini that spits flames from its pipes. “The explosion of fire doesn't faze Tigers fans,” claims Rolfsen, “who are used to watching the Detroit bullpen.” . . .

Tuesday night‘s NHL TV schedule: Buffalo at Winnipeg, regional; Anaheim at Toronto, regional; Carolina at Montreal, regional. Edmonton at Arizona, regional; New York Rangers at Calgary, regional. . . . Available: Los Angeles at St. Louis. . . . Watched: Yuletide Fireplace. . . . You may recall that Chris Davis of the Baltimore Orioles drew a 25-game suspension late last season for the unauthorized use of Adderall. Well, he now has a prescription for it so he’s back in the good books. Adderall is used to treat ADHD. The Baltimore Sun reports that MLB issued 112 exemptions for Adderall in 2014. There are about 750 MLB players. About four per cent of the general population deals with ADHD. . . . Headline at STLtoday.com: Bengals deflate Johnny Football. . . .

“The Florida Panthers won an NHL-record 20-round shootout over the Washington Capitals when Nick Bjugstad scored,” reports RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com. “The last shootout to use that many rounds was ended by Doc Holliday.” . . . Just the other day, ESPN asked: “Who'd you rather be: Johnny Manziel or Aaron Rodgers?” Here is Currie’s response: “Manziel may ‘show you the money,’ but Rodgers can show you Olivia Munn. Nuff said.” . . .

The Edmonton Oilers chose not to allow freshman forward Leon Draisaitl to play for Germany at the upcoming World Junior Championship. The stumbling, bumbling Oilers then made him a healthy scratch for the first time in his career. And this makes sense how? . . . Three weeks ago, you couldn’t find standing room on the Vancouver Canucks’ bandwagon. Then they went on a seven-game road trip and lost the last three games. By the time the losing streak hit five, you could find seats in the front row. . . .

Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times writes: “The Cleveland Cavaliers jumped out to a 21-0 lead Monday night against: a) the Hornets en route to a 97-88 NBA win; b) Johnny Manziel and the Browns in a pickup football game.” . . . “Riesa, Germany, hosted the World Tap Dance Championships this month,” notes Perry. “Roger Goodell’s handling of the Ray Rice case came in third.” . . . Here’s Perry again: “The Interview? Where were the North Korean hackers when we really needed them — when ESPN was filming The Decision?” . . .

We end the last Keeping Score before Christmas with this groaner from the afore-mentioned Currie: “A Cincinnati shortstop named Rudy looked outside and said, ‘It's raining.’ His wife said, ‘No, it's snowing.’ ‘Raining!’ said he. ‘Snowing!’ said she. Raining! Snowing! Raining! Snowing! And on it went. ‘Listen,’ he finally said. ‘Rudolph the Red knows rain, Dear.’ ” . . . Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

(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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