8:30 PM The Rochester Democrat & Chronicle notes that the Rochester Red Wings were the last American baseball team to play in Cuba before the U.S. embargo began in 1960. The July 25 game against the Havana Sugar Kings ended in a 3-3 tie after fans began firing weapons to celebrate Fidel Castro's revolution.
In 2004, Boston sports fans enjoyed the greatest playoff comeback in sports history, as the Red Sox overcame a 3-0 ALCS deficit to defeat the Yankees en route to their first World Series Championship since 1918.
It was hard not to root for the Sox back then. But since 2004, knowing Boston sports fans as I do, it’s been hard not to root against Boston and its insufferable, hipster-strewn “nation” of followers.
While I didn’t care enough earlier this month to actively root against the Boston Bruins as they somehow blew a 3-0 playoff series lead after frittering away a 3-0 Game 7 advantage against Philly, I must admit recent developments in the Orlando-Celtics NBA Eastern Conference Finals have me intrigued.
He’s hardly one of the most high-profile Canadiens of all time, but Patrice Brisebois has had one hell of a ride in the NHL. A veteran of 18 years - all but two spent in Montreal - “Breezer” played over 1,000 games with les Habs and ranks among the franchise’s career leaders in games and goals for defensemen.
(Hey, let’s put this guy in a racecar and see what happens.)
Breezer’s getting up there, though, and there isn’t much of a market for 38-year-old defensemen who were never really that great to begin with. With that, yesterday, Brisebois announced his retirement from NHL, which dovetailed quite nicely into his new venture: auto racing.
There’s nothing inherently wrong with fans of opposing teams co-mingling. Even sexing each other up, sometimes that’s okay. For example, just this past weekend, I wore this shirt to the Iowa-ISU game, even with an ISU alumna on my arm*. Hell, there are plenty of married couples who, for whatever reason, root for different sides of a rivalry. These things happen; fandom usually isn’t that important.
(”Canadiens”? Maple “Leafs”? Okay, as long as we’re taking liberties with spelling here, can we say they’re being joined in Hoaly Matremony?)
“Usually,” as you can probably figure out, is the operative word here. After all, if you’re so devoted to a team that you feel the need to wear their jersey to your wedding day, there’s probably some larger issues with your relationship with reality and the outside world at work here. Marrying someone wearing an opposing jersey, then, cannot be a good move.
We last left the never-ending stand-up comedy routine that is Shaquille O’Neal’s life as he was engaging in a prank battle with Suns rookie Louis Admunson. But then came word that he might soon be taking his show on the road, as the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS reported that the big man expected to be heading to New Orleans in the off-season in a trade for Tyson Chandler.
While the prospect of O’Neal - who had something resembling a career resurgance this past season - joining Chris Paul and David West might make Hornets fans (hello, anyone?) scream like a teenage girl bumping into Joe Jonas at an am/pm, the TIMES-PICAYUNE says that they can save their voices. They looked at the trade and said that the numbers just don’t work - basically, the Hornets would have to trade $8 million more in player salaries in addition to Chandler’s, which doesn’t help their goal of trimming salary to stay under the cap.
So while the Suns’ trade of Shaq might have stalled, the same isn’t true of Arizona Cardinals’ wide receiver Anquan Boldin. First, the DALLAS MORNING NEWS said that Boldin appeared as a guest on Michael Irvin’s radio show and pretty much pleaded to be traded:
As for getting traded Boldin said, “I just want to get it resolved, it’s been going on way too long.” Later he said, “it would hurt but at the same time, change is necessary. My only problem has been management, always has been.”
While this was happening, the ARIZONA REPUBLIC was reporting that the Cardinals have changed their course and are now “open” to listening to trade offers for Boldin, who has two years left on his contract, but still prefer to resign him. Boldin mentioned in his interview that he’d love to play in the NFC East. With basically every team in the division needing a go-to wide receiver, it certainly is an attractive option.
And while this all was happening, on the other side of the country former Delaware football player Julian James was hungry - really hungry. The DELAWARE NEWS-JOURNAL says that a video surveillance camera at an off-campus apartment complex allegedly shows James entering an unlocked apartment and leaving with loot, while unsuccessfully trying to get into six other apartment. His haul?
“100 frozen chicken wings, a pound of frozen salmon, 18 frozen Hot Pockets and 20 hamburger patties worth a total value of $82.”
Or as John Kruk would call that, “lunch.” I hope they recovered the stolen food before James had a chance to eat it; Otherwise, I’d think the state’s Exhibit A in the trial is going to be pretty smelly and disgusting.
What’s hotter than Miss America in a basketball jersey? How about Miss America in a basketball jersey draining an NBA 3-pointer. INDY CORN ROWS says current Miss America Katie Stam did just that before a Pacers game last night.
What happens when a stick from an opposing team’s player gets stuck halfway through the glass in Boston? As PUCK DADDY says, it turned into a tug-of-war between Montreal’s Alexei Kovalev and a Bruins fan during the Canadiens’ 4-2 loss, with the stick breaking in half. If this were the 1970s and the Bruins were playing the Rangers, Mike Milbury would have made sure someone ate some leather.
As if the Flyers needed an obstacle in trying to take down the Penguins in their NHL first-round playoff series: the PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS says that Philadelphia enforcer Daniel Carcillohas been suspended for Game 2 after giving a “message” hit to the back of the head of Pittsburgh’s Max Talbot at the end of the Flyers’ Game 1 loss.
The ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH says that Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter left the team’s game against the Cubs in the fourth inning with a strained oblique. How did he get the injury? Taking a swing during an earlier at-bat. THIS IS WHY WE HAVE THE DH, PEOPLE!
Kenyon Martin on Sacramento Kings co-owner Joe Maloof to SI.COM after Maloof demanded an apology after Martin gave a hard foul to the Kings’ Spencer Hawes: “Apologize to him? I’m not apologizing to him. I apologized to Spencer after the game, but before he opens his mouth he needs to know what’s going on.” Guess someone just got uninvited to the Palms VIP suites this off-season.
Congratulations to former Arizona basketball star Eugene Edgerson, who the ARIZONA DAILY STAR says was arrested for his second domestic abuse charge within the past two months. Edgerson currently plays for the Harlem Globetrotters, leading me to wonder if his wife is the Washington Generals of marriage.
Hey, readers! Time for another sensational SbB Clever Caption Contest!
Today we check out the NHL All-Star Game from Montreal, where we catch Evgeni Malkin (L) so happy to see Alexei Kovalev (R):
What ever could Evgeni be all excited about? Submit your suggestions into the comments section linked below. Winner will be announced in the end-of-the-day recap, and be treated to a celebratory bowl of poutine dumped on their head.
Good luck and good writing! (And in compliance with Canadian bilingual laws, bonne chance et bonne écriture!)
The Vote for Rory campaign last year was cute. Fans got behind a scrappy defenseman and stuffed the ballot box for the NHL All-Star Game, and it was a bit of harmless fun. Leave it to Montreal Canadiens fans to take things a little too far, and probably force Gary Bettman to cancel the All-Star Game altogether. This is why we can’t have nice things!