Sunday, March 1, 2015





“Michael Oher was recently cut by the (Tennessee) Titans,” writes contributor Bill Littlejohn. “Michael took the news fine, but Sandra Bullock had to be escorted off Titans property.” . . . Littlejohn, again: “Joba Chamberlain's new contract with the Detroit Tigers includes a Cy Young bonus. Isn't that like Vin Diesel's new contract including an Oscar bonus?” . . . A Littlejohn hat trick: “David Ortiz is upset over some of the new pace-of-play rules, including one where the batter has to keep one foot in the box after each pitch. Just think how upset Big Papi will be if a rule comes out speeding up home-run trots.” . . .

Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post has another idea that would help MLB speed up the process: “Give infielders and base umps a cattle prod to use on Boston Red Sox plodder David Ortiz during his home-run trots.” . . . Here’s Hamilton, again: “Media reports suggest England’s Radio 1 has banned Madonna’s songs because she’s old and irrelevant. Does that mean TV networks won’t show Tiger Woods anymore?” . . .

After a brief flurry of NHL deals on Wednesday, Ray Ratto of CSNbayarea.com wrote: “If this ruins Deadline Day, I will hate them all forever. But if it leaves all those Canadian TV guys on the set dissecting five-day-old news and literally begging teams on set to do something, anyway, my mood will be assuaged.” . . . It has to be a helpless feeling to be one of the TV hockey panelists watching all of the trade activity over the last few days. . . . What’s left for Monday’s trade deadline? No, I won’t be tuning in at 5 a.m. . . . With all of the NHL trade rumours being spewed by the talking heads these days, you have to wonder if the NHL is the leakiest ship in the navy. . . .

RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com reports: “Two Tennessee high school girls basketball teams got banned from the post-season for intentionally trying to lose a game to avoid the top seed. The first thing that gave them away? They came out in tank tops.” . . . Currie, again: “Complex Sports called Michael Jordan the most clutch player in Bulls history. Derek Rose may go down as the most crutch.” . . .

The next time you’re looking at that last strip of bacon and debating, don’t bother. Just eat it and think about Matt Stonie while you’re doing it. Matt Stonie? He’s a competitive eater and holds the world record for most strips eaten in five minutes. That would be 182. . . . Is this a great world, or what? . . . Outfielder Tyson Gillies of Kamloops, who was released last summer by the Philadelphia Phillies, is in Peoria, Ariz., with the San Diego Padres. He signed a minor-league deal with the Padres on Friday. . . .

“Donald Trump said that he is ‘more serious’ than ever about running for President in 2016,” reports Janice Hough, aka The Left Coast Sports Babe. “And Jon Stewart is thinking ‘well, maybe I can delay that retirement just a bit.’ ” . . . Finally, Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather are scheduled to climb in a ring together and duke it out. Noted ABC-TV’s Jimmy Kimmel: “I’m glad to see Manny and Floyd are finally putting aside their differences to fight.” . . . The last info I saw on tickets had the cheap seats at $3,500. That would buy a lot of bacon. . . . “If you thought the Mayweather-Pacquiao promoters couldn't get any greedier,” reports Vancouver comic Torben Rolfsen, “they've added Crosby-Dubinsky II to the undercard.” . . . One more from Rolfsen: “Rough week for Chicago sports fans: Patrick Kane injury, Derrick Rose injury, and the Cubs are back.” . . .

It was Larry King — yes, that Larry King — who tweeted this the other day: “The rat is perfectly named.” . . . Think about that for a moment. Is that a profound thought, or what? . . . I didn’t watch much of the Academy Awards, but I did get to see Lady Gaga’s tribute to The Sound of Music. Who saw that coming? . . . “What a strange world we live in,” tweets Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun. “Everybody wants a bigger and bigger TV screen, but they don't mind watching stuff on tiny mobile devices.” . . .

“Alex Rodriguez reported to the Yankees’ spring-training complex in Tampa, Fla., three days early,” reports Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times. “Apparently clubhouse attendants needed the extra time just to haul in all his baggage.” . . . “According to Delta Dental research,” Perry notes, “kids in the U.S. received an estimated $255 million from the Tooth Fairy last year. In a related story, Alex Rodriguez still has $61 million coming from the Yanks.” . . . After A-Rod delivered that hand-written apology, and everyone laughed, Will Leitch of Sports on Earth wrote: “We have reached the point with A-Rod that everything he does is reflexively seen as venal and murderous; if A-Rod jumped on a grenade to save the President's life, the New York Post headline would be 'A-Rod Stains West Wing Carpet, Fails to Clean It Up.' ’’ . . .

“Junior hockey franchise officials are threatening to move their teams out of state if they are forced to pay players under child-labor laws,” writes Ron Judd in the Seattle Times. “Oh and they also want a new arena. And a PlayStation.” . . . One more from Judd: “Seattle is considering capping rents at $618 a month on ‘micro-apartments,’ defined as those containing less living space than the single box of a stereo speaker you owned in your 20s.” . . .

It was the late Dean Smith, the long-time head coach of the North Carolina men’s basketball team, who once said: “If you make every game a life-and death proposition, you’re going to have problems. For one thing, you’ll be dead a lot.” . . . Only in today’s NHL could Jaromir Jagr, now 43 years of age and slower than slo-motion, be traded to a team that appeared to be getting younger and faster. . . . Only in today’s NHL could David Clarkson, with one of the worst contracts in history, be traded for Nathan Horton, who has a big contract and back problems, and may never play again. . . . Yes, it’s OK to slap your forehead.

(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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