Darkhorse rookie Jonathan Squibb bested the likes of Glutieus Maximus, Obi Wing, Da Disposal, Frank Da Fraud and Hank the Tank to win this years “locals only” Wing Bowl yesterday at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia.
PHILADELPHIA – Jonathan Squibb, a skinny 23-year-old from Winslow Township, N.J., is the new Wing Bowl champion.
Super Squibb, as he is known, tore through 203 wings – 23 more than second place finisher Not Rich and 50 more than third place eaters Hank the Tank and Da Disposal – while chomping his way to glory and a brand new Mini Cooper automobile.
Going into the competition, the Rutgers University and Winslow Township High School graduate was ranked with 9 to 1 odds by 610 WIP talker Al Morganti, who created Wing Bowl at the sports talk station 17 years ago as a diversion for sports fans mired in a pro sports championship drought.
œNobody believed in me but my family, but I knew I could do it, said Squibb, who is œin career transition.
He planned to celebrate tonight with family and friends. What was his secret?
œIt™s more up here than down here, he explained, pointing first to his brain, then his stomach.
From the Associated Press
Jose Canseco was primed for some more bashing.
Instead of grabbing his Louisville Slugger to send a baseball into orbit, Canseco taped his wrists and put on some boxing gloves to try and send former Partridge kid Danny Bonaduce (above) into a daze.
The former Oakland A’s slugger showed he has only warning track power in the ring. He staggered Bonaduce with a couple of big blows in Saturday night’s three-round fight, but failed to deliver the knockout punch and the celebrity boxing match ended in a deflating draw.
“He hit me harder than I’ve ever been hit my entire life,” Bonaduce said.
Bonaduce’s nose was bloodied and the two hugged after the bout. All that was missing in this D-list celebrity boxing bout was the reality TV cameras.
“If there’s a knockout, it’ll probably be me,” Bonaduce said before the bout.
Bonaduce never looked in any serious trouble and Canseco seemed hesitant to go after him with ferocious cuts.
Canseco took his second shot at celebrity boxing after he was whupped by former Philadelphia Eagle Vai Sikahema in his debut boxing match last July. Bonaduce, who played Danny Partridge on the “The Partridge Family,” is like Mike Tyson in his heyday in the outlandish celebrity boxing circuit. He’s beat Barry “Greg Brady” Williams and Donny Osmond.
Maybe those two 1970s TV stars combined have biceps as big as the hulking Canseco’s. The 6-foot-4 Canseco weighed in at 260 pounds. Bonaduce is 5-6, 180 pounds.
“I truly don’t know that I can damage him,” Bonaduce said. “He’s just too big. I can just outpoint him.”
He didn’t much time to play rope-a-dope against Canseco. The bout featured only three, 1-minute rounds. Canseco sparred early Saturday, ran 10 miles and proclaimed himself in top shape to last 3 minutes, if needed.
And no, neither boxer was drug tested.
“Thank God, no,” said promoter Damon Feldman, laughing.
There are many Philadelphians who would normally be irked with the reputation that Philly sports fans have for booing but who will nonetheless be hoping Flyers fans live up to the rep this Saturday at the Wachovia (for now) Center where Gov Sarah Palin was invited by her best Philly pal Ed Snider to drop the ceremonial first puck at the Flyers home opener. From Philly.com’s Decision:November 4 blog:
Sarah Palin will make a center-rink appearance at the Flyers game Saturday, where she will drop the puck at the ceremonial face-off.
My question is how will she be received? This is Philly, and we, don’t forget, boo Santa Claus. Will the GOP buy up all the seats? Are hockey fans all Reagan Democrats?
And are the Flyers taking a risk by doing what appears to be a political endorsement? As they say, wait and we shall see.
Here’s the opening paragraphs of the press release…
Philadelphia, PA “ October 8, 2008) Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, the nation™s most popular hockey mom, will join the winner of the Philadelphia Flyers regional search for the œUltimate Hockey Mom contest and drop the puck at the ceremonial opening face-off as the home team Flyers host the New York Rangers at the Wachovia Center on Saturday, October 11 at 7 p.m.
œBecause of the tremendous amount of publicity she has brought to our sport, we invited the most popular hockey mom in North America to our home opener to help us get our season started, said Comcast-Spectacor Chairman Ed Snider who founded the Flyers in 1967. œWe are very excited she has accepted our offer and we are very proud of the publicity she is generating for hockey moms and the sport of hockey.
The Flyers have been searching for the ultimate hockey mom in the Greater Philadelphia Region through an on line contest which asked hockey players or hockey moms themselves to submit their hockey mom poster to the team.
Hockey moms and players were encouraged to submit posters showing their hockey mom pride and their loyalty and dedication to the sport via the team™s website, philadelphiaflyers.com, by October 7. The team will award all hockey moms entered into the contest with a free “puck-er peach” lipstick and four tickets to a Philadelphia Phantoms hockey game. The winner will appear on the ice with Palin for opening face-off.
The McCain campaign operatives should have thought twice before vetting this appearance as even if Gov Palin is escorted by Bernie Parent and Pelle Lindberghs widow to center ice while waving a BEAT L.A. banner, unless Snider decides to have security confiscate all camera cell-phones, this is only going to lead to yet another embarrassment for the cluelessly flailing McCain campaign that will be all over YouTube.
(though they couldn’t make the trip to Milwaukee, the Sadistic Exploits bask in the accomplishment of their hometown team’s victory)
The Philadelphia Phillies have erased the memory of their 3 and out playoff loss of 2007 and have advanced to the NLCS for the first time since Team Mullet of 1993 with their 6-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers today at Miller Park.
The Fightin’s took this series with the “Weaverball” combination of strong pitching and the longball. Jimmy Rollins got the Phillies on the board with a leadoff HR and in the third inning the spirit of Ned Yost was in the Brewers dugout as Dale Sveum elected to intentionally walk Ryan Howard with 2 outs to face Pat Burrell. Sveum was either ignorant of or choose to ignore Burrells excellent career #s vs Jeff Suppan and Burrell made them pay by turning on a 2-2 pitch and launching a 3-run blast. Jayson Werth followed up with a HR in the next at-bat and after a brief torrent of boos from Brewers fans, said fans and their thundersticks were taken out of the game. Phillies starter Joe Blanton kept them silent by efficiently setting down the Brewers through 6 innings and after a leadoff HR by Prince Fielder and single by JJ Hardy in the 7th, Charlie Manuel went to the pen and Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge held on for the win. Before the game there was much concern from Phillies fans over the somewhat anemic offense during the first 3 games. The margins of victory in the first two were a result of a Mike Cameron misplay of a Chase Utley liner in Game 1 and the freakish 9 pitch Brett Myers walk off of CC Sabathia that extended the Phillies inning and helped set the stage for Shane Victorinos grand slam. The Phillies didnt produce anything resembling a real rally during the series (having scored in 3 of 27 innings during the first three games) but the flukes and long ball were sufficient given the strong Phillies pitching this series
I would have to consider the upcoming NLCS to be pretty much of a toss-up. The Phils and Dodgers faced each other 8 times this year (all games post-Manny acquistion) where each team took turns sweeping 4 games from the other in their respective home parks. The Phillies rotation and bullpen looks really strong going into the series, but the Phillies have a long history of being completely handcuffed by Derek Lowe (who will be getting 2 starts this series). The Phillies win today does ensure that Cole Hamels will be matched up against Lowe. The biggest question is what the Phillies bring offensively. Is Chase Utley finally going to show up for his first playoff series? Was todays 2 HR performance by Pat Burrell his final hurrah as a Phillie or will he make the Dodgers pay for pitching around Ryan Howard? Will Rollins, Victorino and Werth follow up on the good series they had and will Feliz/Ruiz be a black hole in the bottom of the order or will they contribute some ancillary production at the plate? And of importance: If Larry Bowa goes ballistic on an umpire at CBP while wearing Dodger blue, will he be booed, bemusedly laughed at or will Phans give him the “Lar-ry..Lar-ry” chant and give him a standing O as he leaves the field for old times sake?
In what was a display of competitive desire or selfish immaturity, Phillies pitcher Brett Myers (above) took umbrage took over being lifted in the 8th inning of the Phillies 4-2 victory over the Pirates and manager Charlie Manuel was having none of it. From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
Myers pitched the third consecutive strong outing by a Phillies starter, working into the eighth inning, and picked up the decision last night in his team’s 4-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. But Myers had words with Charlie Manuel after the manager went out to lift him from the game.
After giving up a ground-rule double to Chris Gomez, Myers retired Freddy Sanchez on a hard line drive to shortstop Jimmy Rollins for the second out in the eighth, but Manuel came out of the dugout to bring in left-hander J.C. Romero.
Myers turned his back and walked toward second base when he saw Manuel coming. When Manuel reached the mound, Myers was visibly upset and appeared to say,“This is my [expletive] game,” before leaving to a standing ovation from the crowd of 45,060 at Citizens Bank Park.
Television cameras showed Manuel confronting Myers after returning to the dugout. The two exchanged words and Myers turned his back on his manager, who tried to grab him by the shoulder until Myers disappeared up the tunnel leading to the clubhouse.
Manager and player had a brief meeting after the game, however. Myers admitted to reporters, “It’s my fault.”
“I’m a competitor,” Myers said. “I like competing and I wanted to stay in and finish the game. But sometimes your emotions get the best of you and you might do something irrational out there. He thought I did. That’s part of the game. It’s all patched up now, though. We’re buddies”.
I am happy to read that Myers and Uncle Cholly have no lingering hard feelings but this was not Myers “fucking game”, it was the Philadelphia Phillies game. Regardless of Myers pitch count and recent effectiveness after being demoted to AAA, he had still given up 3 hard hit balls that inning (kudos to the Phillies fans who ducked out of the way to allow Jason Werth to reach into the stands to make the first out) and given Myers propensity of giving up big innings and coughing up the longball, it was a prudent decision by Manuel to go for the near-automatic JC Romero vs lefthand batter 2-out situation (especially when the very capable Chad Durbin was available for the 9th) and minimize any chance of the Pirates getting back into a game where the Phillies had to win. It also wasnt like Myers was blindsided as pitching coach Rich Dubee called for a time-killing conference at the mound before Myers last batter, obviously to buy time for Romero to loosen up. Myers is embarrassingly silly looking when he is angry and after showing up his manager on the mound, I give Cholly all the credit for waiting until he got back into the dugout before laying into Myers rather than going at it with him right there on the mound.
Former Phillies closer/ 1993 World Series Goat/Current Phillies post-game cable TV analyst/Wing Bowl aficionado Mitch Williams is not one to stand for one sided officiating per the following item in the Philadelphia Daily News, as penned by Dan Gross :
Mitch Williams lived up to his “Wild Thing” nickname Saturday at a Catholic Youth Organization basketball game in Medford, N.J.
The former Phillies hurler cursed at a female referee who was calling a basketball game in which his daughter, a fifth-grader, was playing for St. Mary of the Lakes against Our Lady of Good Counsel.
Williams, who now sells his own brand of salsa and who later this month starts hosting a Phillies pre-game show on The Big Talker 1210 AM, told us yesterday that he was sorry for using the f-word while yelling at the ref. “I’m emotional when it comes to my kids. What I saw happening was completely unfair,” Williams said, referring to his daughter’s team being fouled repeatedly with a lack of calls from the refs. Williams also appears regularly on the morning show on 610 WIP-AM, and is a Phils post-game analyst on Comcast SportsNet. The apology isn’t doing much for Ron Martin, who oversees referees as the Camden Board 34 independent assigner. He said yesterday that he called St. Mary of the Lakes to say that although the season ended last night, if Williams “is going to appear at any games next year, we will not officiate them. If he enters the gym in the middle of a game, we will stop officiating.” Martin is executive editor of the Burlington County Times. “A lot of people challenge calls, but when someone hits on one of the magic words, we can’t tolerate that stuff,” he said. Martin said Williams’ outburst is “not indicative of St. Mary’s athletic program. There are some great people over there,” he said. The 33-year-old female referee declined comment yesterday
Any connection between the referee and either Joe Carter or Curt Schilling could not be ascertained as of this writing.
Former Philadelphia Flyers legendary center/non-legendary GM Bobby Clarke doesn’t see eye-to-eye with NHL officials lack of tolerance of the latest cheap shot coming from a member of the Orange and Black. From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
You’ve got to love Bobby Clarke.| He’s 58 and hasn’t taken the jock off yet. Yesterday, the former Flyers general manager, who played 15 years in the NHL and is in the Hall of Fame, created yet another buzz.Clarke not only went to the defense of Flyer Steve Downie – a permissible stance by any team exec – but he implied that the victim of a sucker punch deserved the shot.“I loved it,” said Clarke of Downie’s fist to the face of Toronto’s Jason Blake.Alarm bells went off all over North America.
Downie was suspended for the season’s first 20 games for a preseason hit on Ottawa’s Dean McAmmond.
In the days after that, Blake implied that the 20-game suspension wasn’t enough.
Re-enter Downie. On Saturday, in just his fourth NHL game, the Flyers rookie went after Blake, punching him in the left eye while the victim was being held by officials during a scuffle.
“Blake was a guy who had no problem going out and saying he should be suspended for life or suspended for the year,” Clarke told The Sports Network of Canada. “When you say something that stupid, why shouldn’t this kid go after him for it?
“The kid did what every hockey player should do. If a player like Blake, who’s been around as long as he has, wants to criticize a player, then he has to go on the ice with him and suffer the consequences.”
Blake shrugged it off.
Clarkie, who broke Valery Kharlamov’s ankle with his stick in the 1972 World Cup, played in the days when an eye demanded an eye.
He still lives there.
The major topic of current discussion amongst Igglephans is the question of Donovan McNabb and his current and future role with the Birds. Should this be the last Eagles season with McNabb at the helm, Phil Sheridan certainly can not be accused of helping run #5 out of town. From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
…If Donovan McNabb is one of the best NFL quarterbacks of this decade (and the fact-based belief here is that he is), why do the Eagles often look better with supposedly lesser QBs?…
…The question arises as A.J. Feeley likely makes his second start of the season today in a must-win game against the Seattle Seahawks. Feeley’s performance, and that of his teammates, will be fodder for debate all this week as McNabb returns to practice for the Giants game.
So this is the perfect time to try to figure this thing out….
…If you believe your eyes, you saw the Eagles play a more complete and more focused game against the New England Patriots last Sunday than they’ve played all season. That could be explained by a lot of things – a challenging and aggressive game plan that won the players’ hearts and minds, the historic and insulting Vegas line that made the Eagles 24-point underdogs – if it was an isolated incident…
It wasn’t. We saw this in 2002, when Feeley started five games after McNabb broke his ankle. We saw it last year, when Garcia took over for the injured McNabb. Just as they did in Foxborough, the Eagles played differently with different men at quarterback.
The assumption is that there is something lacking in McNabb, some magic spark provided by the feisty Garcia and Feeley. It isn’t something you can measure with numbers or prove with statistics. It’s just something you sense.
That brings us to the theory that just might explain all of this.
The problem here isn’t McNabb; it’s the rest of the team. The problem isn’t that McNabb isn’t a good enough leader; it’s that he’s on a team without enough good followers….
…The rest of the Eagles know that McNabb will absorb a disproportionate amount of criticism and blame when things go wrong. He is the lightning rod that keeps the rest of them from taking any direct hits from the fans and reporters. That’s true to an extent for most quarterbacks, but not to the absurd degree it is here, where McNabb gets ripped for his facial expressions, where and when he stands on the sideline, what his mother writes on a blog and so on, ad nauseam.
In his case, literally ad nauseam.
Take McNabb out, though, and the rest of them have no one to hide behind. The offensive linemen can’t count on McNabb being blamed for taking sacks. The receivers can’t rely on McNabb being blamed for their inability to get open, adjust to a ball, or hang on to one in their hands. The defense and special teams don’t slide by, failing to create decent field position or make any big plays of their own. The coaches can’t take shelter behind the veil of vague answers that encourages the knee-jerk scapegoating of the quarterback.
They play, and coach, better not for Garcia or Feeley, but to cover their own well-remunerated backsides.
The worst thing is that the easiest fix for this is the one proposed by McNabb’s most vocal critics. It means moving on, letting McNabb go somewhere else to take a fresh chance at winning it all while Feeley or Kevin Kolb take on the full weight of leading this bunch.
If that happens, my money is on No. 5
Philadelphia’s Mayor-elect “Mixmaster” Michael Nutter (above) made a pronouncement that one would have never heard during the Frank Rizzo era. From the Phila Daily News/WHYY Next Mayor Blog:
Yo, Mike. Did we hear you dissing on Rocky?
Yup, in a speech about Philadelphia’s identity at the Franklin Institute last night, Nutter said the city needs to get over the iconic Sly Stallone film Rocky, about the south Philly boxer with a dream. Say what?
“We are entering the post-Rocky era in Philadelphia,” the mayor-elect said. “I think it’s an identity that doesn’t serve us well.”Nutter — who did say he enjoys the movie — continued, “the movie had a Cinderella quality about it. If you had no skills somehow you could be great.”
He went on to say “We need to stop celebrating low skills and start working on an identity where smart is cool and going to college is the norm.”
Delco Daily Times sports scribe/ unintentional comedy writer Jack McCaffery is still on the “Trade Ryan Howard for pitching” campaign. This time he sets his sights a bit higher than Kip Wells or Ted Lilly, but manages to think this idea through even less than his norm, even while playing the smart-ass and sneaking in a crack at Pat Gillick. From the Delco Daily Times
…But should the Phillies not reach the playoffs, they will have to confront a reality: That nucleus, so talented, so popular, is never going to win anything. And once they realize as much, general manager Ruben Amaro and his assistant Pat Gillick will have to edit their list of untouchables.
They must do that because history says David Montgomery will not spend the necessary money to gain a championship. But if done right, the Phils can spend their other valuable resources. They can exchange Howard, Utley, Jimmy Rollins, Cole Hamels or Brett Myers for maximum value in trade. And if they are at peace with their baseball integrity rather than married to the realities of sports marketing, they will realize that there is one name on that list ill-fitted for the National League yet also so contractually appealing that his very mention by an auctioneer would invite a stampede.
When they do that, they will consider trading Howard for the ace pitcher they lack. And might not the Minnesota Twins be interested in offloading Johann Santana, soon due a record raise, for Howard, who could D.H. for about a million per for the next four years?
That is a cue for the shallow of thought to shout out, œThere they go again, trying to run a superstar out of town. But the idea is not to dump a superstar, just to find one who can pitch….
…What responsible baseball reason? This one: Ryan Howard is about two errors from lifting Steve Blass off the hook for that throwing-phobia disease. And as long as the Phillies are in the no-D.H. league, they cannot commit to a max contract for a position player unable to toss a smashed beer can into a 200-gallon trash drum.
There was always some layer of mystery as to why Howard proved incapable in his double-secret outfield auditions, the ones that could have kept Jim Thome in Philadelphia. The only constant is that more than one scout has crossed eyes and raised eyebrows whenever the subject has been broached. If it weren™t impolite, they may even have shuddered.
This has nothing to do with Howard™s rampage to 173 strikeouts, for any hitter capable of going for 40-plus and a buck-20 can strike out as often as he pleases. But it does have to do with the discomfort that the left-left Utley-Howard power base risks. And it does have to do with the rebirth of Pat Burrell, who is good for 30-plus right-handed dings. And it does have to do with moving Utley out of harm™s way at second and protecting him from more injury. And it does have to do with Iguchi, the kind of situational hitter that the Phillies have lacked, and who will re-sign here only if he has a real shot at an every-day position.
And mostly, it does have to do with the only way the Phillies can acquire a superstar pitcher…
Well thought out Jacko. McCaffery cites Dave Montgomerys unwillingness to pony up mega-$$$ but feels that a trading off 4 years of Ryan Howard at bargain price for nothing more certain than one year of Johan Santana is a swell idea. I look forward to a future McCaffery article suggesting that the Phillies trade Jimmy Rollins to Oakland for Joe Blanton.