Friday, March 2, 2012
Foul Territory: Wheelers, Dealers, and Ex-Steelers
* LeBron James Didn't Go to College, or "Finishing" School — With the All-Star Game on the line, the East's LeBron James passed up a shot attempt and instead passed, despite the West's Kobe Bryant urging him to "take the shot." Allegedly, it was the first time Bryant took "no" for an answer.
* Match Playa, or the Hunted Became the Hunter, or Rory, Rory, He's a Loser — Hunter Mahan beat Rory McIlroy 2-and-1 to win the World Golf Championship on Sunday. For those unfamiliar with match play lingo, "2-and-1" means Mahan had a two-hole lead with one hole to play. For those unfamiliar with Tiger Woods lingo, "2-and-1" means a threesome.
* Jordan Still Rules — Kobe Bryant scored 27 points in Sunday's NBA All-Star Game and broke Michael Jordan's scoring record. Bryant now has 271 All-Star points to Jordan's 262, further proof that Kobe Bryant is no Michael Jordan.
* Fortunate-Son, or Me So Corny — Ben & Jerry's apologized for including fortune cookies in its Jeremy Lin-inspired "Taste the Lin-Sanity" frozen yogurt. As a further display of contrition, Ben & Jerry's introduced a new flavor, "Crow."
* Blindsided, or 86'd, or the Steelers Chose Not to Re-Ward Themselves — The Pittsburgh Steelers will release veteran wide receiver Hines Ward sometime in the next two weeks. The decision was not a surprise, as the Steelers are in the midst of a roster-wide salary purge, as well as a youth-movement at wide receiver. In other words, everyone saw it coming, except for Ed Reed.
* If You Build it, They Will Com-plete a 20-62 Season — The Sacramento Kings struck a deal with the city of Sacramento to remain in the city long-term with a new arena planned. Fittingly, the new arena will have a basement.
* "Empty" Promises, or Unhappy Valentine's Day — Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine banned alcohol from the Boston clubhouse in response to last season's uproar over beer consumption by starting pitchers during games in which they weren't appearing. Although the flow of beer into the clubhouse has been nixed, chances are alcohol will flow quite smoothly through loopholes in Valentine's policy.
* It's as Clear as Black and White — Robert Griffin III recorded the fastest 40-yard dash time among quarterbacks, clocking a 4.41 at the NFL Combine, while Andrew Luck posted a 4.67. When asked if the numbers will affect their decision in April's NFL draft, the Indianapolis Colts said they'd "take their time" before answering.
* As if a Driver From Colombia Needed Another Reference to "Blow," or Turn and Burn — Matt Kenseth won the rain-delayed Daytona 500 on Monday night after the race was delayed for two hours after Juan Montoya crashed into the back of a jet dryer during a caution on lap 160. Overnight, Montoya became the face of NASCAR, at least in rear-view mirrors.
* Montreal Expo-nential, or Capitol Building — Washington Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman signed a six-year, $100 million extension that will keep him in the nation's capitol through 2019. With so much cash tied up in the contracts of Zimmerman, Bryce Harper, and Stephen Strasburg, many in the Nationals clubhouse are asking the same question as those in the Red Sox clubhouse: "Can we 'remain liquid?'"
* Advantage, the Other 10 Contestants — Donald Driver and Martina Navritilova will compete on ABC's Dancing With the Stars, joining 10 other celebrity contestants for the show's 14th edition. As the only athletes on the show, Driver and Navritilova are likely to share experiences, as well as a dressing room.