Noted Fascist Encourages Us To Talk About Practice

Posted in Football at 1:50 am by

There’s been a Paolo Di Canio sighting, and fortunately for once, there’s no sieg heiling involved. Currently toiling for Serie C2′s Cisco Roma, Di Canio brings a bit of whimsy to the training ground. (link courtesy The Offside)

Sure, it would be more impressive if he pulled this off in an actual match, but I’m not sure we’d want to see the celebration afterwards.

Having seen how well this flexible scheduling thing has worked out for NBC and the NFL (ahem), Sky and the Premiership are mulling a similar shift for a Manchester United/Chelsea finale.

Gaylord : Comes With A Bone Of His Own

Posted in Blogged Down, consumer affairs, Dogs, Internal Affairs, Rock Und Roll at 12:36 am by

Through the auspices of Bedazzled, we learn the creators of Digger The Dog weren’t the innovative geniuses we thought they were. (quicktime video)

Hey, how’s this for a convenient segue? Though I’m tempted to tell this guy to suck my dick,

a) his pic dissuaded me from doing so, and
b) I suspect such an overture wouldn’t be nearly “wannabe homosexual” enough for him.

Still, I’m encouraged to see New Jersey’s foremost expert on race has graduated from imaginary friends to the real thing. It’s totally awesome the way the internet brings people together.

Much as I hate to harp on the subject of David Wells’ late twin brother of different mothers, this might be the greatest radio advertisement of all time (mp3 courtesy of your host with the most, Derek Erdman). For starters, the Geege managed to singlehandedly kill the power pop revival before the original subgenre was finished. What’s more, if this isn’t the first commercial to drop a recording artist’s real home digits, it has to be the first and last radio spot in history to conclude with the tagline, “represented by Genya Raven”.


High Anxiety At MSG

Posted in Basketball at 10:33 pm by

Knicks 151, Pistons 145 (3 OT)

(Channing Frye, draining a jumper at the end of the 2nd overtime and promptly forgetting there was another 5 minutes to play)

I’ll resist the temptation to go hyperbole crazy and tell you Ali/Frazier I and II had nothing on this game. But I don’t think it would be any exaggeration to say tonight’s slugfest at the Garden has been the most hotly contested Knicks game since, well….the last time they were relevant.  Rip Hamilton (51 points) showed no ill-effects from last night’s tough game with the Nets, while on the other side of the ledger, Stephon Marbury scored a season-high 41 points before fouling out, and Eddy Curry delivered an eye-popping 33 (and these days, you no longer have to look twice to make sure that isn’t a typo).

How is it that David Lee — being shoved around by players with far more impressive resumes — pulls down so many crucial rebounds?  How is that the infuriatingly erratic Jamal Crawford connects on so many long-range shots in such (Chris Russo voice here) big spots?  Well, other than at the end of regulation. Save for the Philly debacle, if the Knicks could bottle the sort of tenacity they’ve shown since the The Brawl…Isiah could have it made into his own signature scent, the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for that special work colleague.

To flip the cynical switch for a moment, the Knicks came into tonight on 3 days’ rest, while the Pistons had to tangle with the Nets on Tuesday.  But they all count, and I don’t know very many persons who’d have picked a shorthanded New York squad to go 4-1 after the fight with Denver.

Rip Hamilton had a chance to cut New York’s lead to 148-147 with 13 second remaining, but he was bumped by Renaldo Balkman when driving the lane.  No foul was called, and Hamilton was hit with a technical moments later. Vince Carter knows exactly how you feel, Rip.

When It Comes To Sneaker Salesmen, I’ll Take King Buzzo Over Stephon Marbury

Posted in consumer affairs, Fashion, skateboarding, The Marketplace at 8:01 pm by

David Scheid
sounds the sneaker fetish alarm : Nike’s limited edition Dunk High Pro Melvins model (above).

Not to be confused with the same company’s limited edition Dinosaur Jr. shoe.

Taylor : Merriman’s Letting The Kids Down

Posted in Gridiron at 6:09 pm by

Despite having missed more than a quarter of the Chargers’ games due to suspension,  OLB Shawne Merriman is a leading contender for juiced menace man of the year honors.  None of this sits well with the saintly Jason Taylor (above), who demonstrated for the AP’s Steve Wine that he doesn’t need to wait for retirement or an ESPN commentary gig to become a self-righteous blowhard.

Miami Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor says the candidacy of his likely chief rival for NFL defensive player of the year, Shawne Merriman, was tainted by a four-game steroid suspension in November.

“You really shouldn’t be able to fail a test like that and play in this league, to begin with,” Taylor said Wednesday. “To make the Pro Bowl and all the other awards, I think you’re walking a fine line of sending the wrong message.”

“A performance-enhancing drug is, obviously, what it is,” Taylor said. “You enhance your performance by doing that. You fail that test, I think it’s not right, it’s against the rules and ultimately I think it’s sending the wrong message to the youth in America and the people who look at this game not only as entertainment but also to learn lessons from it.”

“He’s always making plays,” Taylor said. “He’s one of the best young talents we have in this game right now as far as defensively, and he has had an unbelievable year. With that being said, there are certain rules and guidelines we have to abide by to play in this game.”

Bring Me The Head Of A Light Entertainer

Posted in non-sporting journalism, The Law, The World Of Entertainment at 5:51 pm by

From the Mirror’s Aidan Mcgurran.

The father of Stuart Lubbock – the man found dead in comedian Michael Barrymore’s pool – yesterday welcomed the news that police were investigating a new clue.

Terry Lubbock, 61, thanked the Mirror for a “wonderful Christmas present” after our exclusive report that a “middleaged gay man” may have been there that night.

Butcher Stuart, 31, died after a drink and drug-fuelled party at Barrymore’s home in Roydon, Essex, in March 2001.

A postmortem found he had horrific anal injuries.

Of course, it would help if there was a more detailed description. I mean, there’s all sorts of middle-aged gay men who might be hanging around Michael Barrymore’s swimming pool. Perhaps, with a robe monogrammed “M.B.”?

Let The Naming & Shaming Re-Commence

Posted in Baseball, The Law at 4:12 pm by

From the AP’s David Kravets and Paul Elias :

The names and urine samples of about 100 Major League Baseball players who tested positive for performance enhancing drugs three years ago can be used by government investigators in their probe of steroids in sports, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.

The ruling from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals could bolster the government’s case against Barry Bonds if his name is among those who tested positive. The San Francisco Giants slugger has been the target of a perjury investigation since he testified before a grand jury that he didn’t knowingly ingest performance enhancing drugs.

The samples had been collected by the league in 2003 as part of a survey to gauge the prevalence of steroid use. Baseball players and owners agreed in their labor contract that the results would be confidential, and each player was assigned a code number to be matched with his name.

Quest Diagnostics
of Teterboro, N.J., one of the largest drug-testing firms in the nation, analyzed more than 1,400 urine samples from players that season. Comprehensive Drug Testing, of Long Beach, coordinated the collection of specimens and compiled the data.

Though I have no inside knowledge of the identities of any of the players that tested positive, I shudder to think what the next batch of revelations might do to Manny Alexander’s Hall of Fame chances.

Saints Fan : Fuck You America

Posted in Blogged Down, Gridiron, Natural Disasters at 3:55 pm by

(an inspiring symbol of hope and resurrection the well compensated Reggie Bush)

Charles Star
wonders “why does all of the coverage of the New Orleans Saints sound like reporting at the Special Olympics?”

I don™t want the pity party. I don™t want the bullshit story lines about the post-Katrina emotion and I don™t want every Saints fumble to be turned into a kidney punch for some poor blind woman in the 9th Ward who has nothing left but a beat up transistor and the voice of Hokie Gajan to get her through her bleak days.

I love this team. I was thrilled when we (yes, œwe, asshole) signed Drew Brees and even more thrilled when the Texans decided to whiff on the easiest draft choice ever. When I was asked at the beginning of the year, I said that if the schedule breaks right, the Saints could win 10 or 11 games. It sounded crazy at the time but I knew that it was true (I also said that 4-12 was possible and I™m not at all sure that was wrong either (see week 15)). Now that it has come true, now that the Saints are 10-5, I™d like to enjoy the success of my favorite football team. They are not a metaphor. They aren™t a metaphor this year; they are winning with good players. They weren™t a metaphor last year; they lost becuase their QB was functionally retarded.

It is really tiresome to have to listen to all the crap about destiny and rebuilding and, most of all, Hurricane Katrina. The devastation wrought by the hurricane is too serious to be reduced to cheap motivation for a football game and football doens™t have the necessary heft to bear the burden of Katrina.

I think Star makes an excellent point, and with the above in mind, perhaps Stuart Adamson’s estate can contribute mechanical royalties from the U2/Green Day cover of “The Saints Are Coming” to someone truly needy. Because I don’t think Aaron Brooks will be earning an NFL salary in the future.

Myers On Desperate Colonel Coughlin

Posted in Gridiron at 3:20 pm by

The New York Daily News’ Gary Myers has the pleasure of chatting with an anonymous member of Big Blue while trashing the “desperation phase” of Tom Coughlin’s tenure.

Coughlin finally fired offensive coordinator John Hufnagel as his playcaller yesterday, but it’s much too late in the season for the move to have an impact. And instead of Coughlin handing the job to quarterbacks coach Kevin Gilbride, the other part of the tandem that has done such a wonderful job with Eli Manning, he should have taken control of the Titanic and called the plays himself Saturday night in Washington.

At this point, why trust anyone else when it’s your job on the line?

I asked one Giant in the days after Sunday’s debacle against the Saints how the players feel these days about Coughlin – did they want him back, and what has gone wrong?

“We are tiring of his act,” the Giant said. “He is pushing too hard. We’re still in full pads for part of practice, despite all the injuries we have and the fact that it’s the end of a long season. He is very ‘me’ oriented, always talks about doing things his way – his hard-ass, no-give approach – but we’re not winning or sustaining games, so the disconnect is widening and we are tuning him out.”

It’s a shame Jeff Feagles isn’t willing to step up and take credit for such an astute observation.

NY SportsDog claims “the latest rumour that appears to have traction is that Giants will go hard for both Patriots head coach Bill Belichick to replace Coughlin and Patriots V.P./player personnel Scott Pioli to replace outgoing GM Ernie Accorsi,” a curious assertion given that Steve Serby already recommended the Giants pursue Pioli (along with the Hooded Casanova’s former colleague, Charlie Weis). Given Bob Kraft’s history of losing coaches to the Swamp, I have a hard time imagining the Casanova and Pioli escaping Foxboro, contracts or not.

Stu Jackson, Bob Watson Take Note : Nobody Fucks With The All India Chess Federation

Posted in Chess at 1:23 pm by

From The Hindu :

In one of the harshest punishments to a chess player, the All India Chess Federation has banned Umakant Sharma of Southern Railway for 10 years for cheating during a FIDE rating tournament at Delhi early this month.

The AICF at its Central Council meeting at Chennai yesterday decided to ban Umakant, the second seed at the Air Marshal Subroto tournament, for being caught with a blue tooth device hidden in his cap.

AICF Treasurer and Delhi Chess Association President Bharat Singh Chauhan, who exhibited the cap and device at the meeting, said the decision was taken after a long deliberation on the pros and cons of the nature of the offence and the punishment, besides the complete record of the player, who climbed from ELO ratings 1989 to around 2480 in only the last six months.

“The matter was discussed at length at the meeting and it was decided that such acts were not welcome in chess,” Chauhan told PTI.

“The Council also checked Umakant’s complete record, including his games and even financial background and was surprised to learn that he had expensive mobile set despite being unemployed,” he said.

“It is only recently that he got a job with the Southern Railways in Chennai,” he said.