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Showing posts from May, 2009

Leave it to the Pirates ...

Just when you thought there was a bright spot to the Pirates' season, they go and do it again.

First they lost to the Nats, the worst team in baseball. I can give them that one, I guess. After all, they had taken the first three games in their series against them.

But they go out and get shut out by a team that gave up 20 runs the night before.

It's a good thing I have the Penguins to provide a nice little distraction.

Watch out, Buffalo, T.O. now has a key to the city

I know the people in Buffalo desperately want to win a championship of some kind.

There's that Wide Right thing in their history, a few other blowouts in the Super Bowl and a near-miss in the Stanley Cup finals.

The thirst is there, and nothing's wrong with that. Every city should desire a championship from one of their professional teams.

Earlier this week, however, the city of Buffalo crossed the line.

They presented Terrell Owens with the key to the city.

If I lived in Buffalo, I'd have my locks changed by now.

Usually, such an honor might go to someone who's accomplished something.

What's T.O. done?

If we keep it strictly in postseason terms, not much. If we talk off-field items, then there's a laundry list, which soon will include T.O.'s antics in Buffalo.

Owens seemed a bit puzzled. He told the Buffalo News this:

“I don’t know why I’m deserving. But I can honestly say that me being here and my dedication, I’ll show you why I’m deserving."

Anything short of …

Pens ice Game 1 in Eastern finals

Yeah, that's the way I like it.

Just like Game 7 in the Capitals series, the Penguins jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period.

That's good enough to grab another drink, kick back and relax while cheering every check, shift and shot by the Pens.

Unfortunately, the Pens didn't rout the Hurricanes like they did the Caps. It would have been fun, but it wasn't necessary, either.

Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury overshadowed Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and the Staal brothers with a strong 25-save performance.

This could be a sign that Fleury is getting hot at the right time. A hot goaltender can carry a team.

And not to get too far ahead of things, but if you look down the road, a potential matchup against the Red Wings looms. Fleury could be the difference if he's in the zone.

But let's get back to Monday night.

Malkin had a goal and an assist, Crosby didn't score (!) but he did have an assist, and the Hurricanes were stuffed on offense.

The only problem is we'll need …

Pens let Capitals off the hook

Any time you have a team on the ropes, you need to put them away.

The Penguins had an early lead (1-0) against the Capitals in Game 6 of their Eastern Conference semifinals Monday night.

They blew it.

The Penguins also had a third-period lead (3-2).

They blew that also.

The Pens were fortunate that Sidney Crosby scored near the end of the regulation to tie the game and force overtime.

The goal was a beauty, with Sid slapping the puck in mid-air into the net. It could have been one to remember for a long time.

Instead, it'll be archived after the Capitals' David Steckel scored 6:22 into overtime.

The Pens had a lot going their way in this one.

They always had closed out the Capitals. In fact, they had owned the Caps in the playoffs.

It all ended Monday night.

The Pens still have a chance to wrap up the Capitals on Wednesday in Game 7 of an excellent series.

Let's hope the Pens don't blow it this time.

If the Pens win Game 5, do they thank Yanni?

It seems Washington Capitals owner Ted Leonsis is unhappy about his team playing on back-to-back nights in the NHL playoffs.
It is a shame that both teams will have to play back to back games ... because the Pittsburgh building - against NHL rules - booked a series of concerts and forced the league to alter the playoff schedule, Leonsis wrote on his blog.

That's too bad, Ted. It really is. You'll soon be up there in the upper echelon of crybabies of in sports.

It's unfortunate that three events over eight days at Mellon Arena forced the schedule change. One of those events happened to be a Yanni concert.

Hey, that's the breaks. Mellon Arena needs as many events scheduled there as possible. And just a couple months ago it looked like the Pens could miss the playoffs.

Now that they've evened the series, it looks as if things could turn in Game 5 tonight.

Just remember, all that momentum of winning Games 3 and 4 goes out of the window when they drop the puck.

If the Pens win…

Manny being Manny

There's certainly no shock on my part for hearing about a baseball player being suspended for performance-enhancing drugs.

There was nothing when the Alex Rodriguez story surfaced. Nothing when the Roger Clemens rumors were out there.

So to wake up and read that Manny Ramirez would be suspended for 50 games for a positive test, well, who can really be shocked.

It sounds like Manny didn't know what he was doing.

"Recently, I saw a physician for a personal health issue. He gave me a medication, not a steroid, which he thought was OK to give me," Ramirez said in a statement issued by the players' union.
That's the typical Manny being Manny line. Everyone should be tired of it by now.

The sad part is, with baseball's testing policy as weak as it is, there shouldn't be players getting caught.

It takes someone like Manny to get caught.

Now, his Hall of Fame ticket could be in jeopardy.

If I was a voter, he'd never make my ballot.

Hold on to your hats. The top rides at Cedar Point

I got hooked on Cedar Point back in junior high when the Gemini was the top ride and it took nearly two hours to wait in line for the Corkscrew.

I went back several years later when the Gemini became an afterthought and riding the Magnum, Mean Streak and Raptor were on the to-do list for each visit.

A few more years passed by and I returned to the Point. This time, two kids accompanied me through the park.

It's been a two years since my oldest has been tall enough to go on all of the rides, and he's been on all of the major ones there. In fact, he's been on some that I won't even bother.

My wife and I swear something happens when you reach a certain age. I'm not sure what the magic number is, and maybe it's different for each individual, but when you hit it, your equilibrium changes.

He's got nothing to worry about for a while. He loves his coasters. And rides that spin.

Since Cedar Point opens May 16, I asked him for his top rides there.

He has them ranked from 1…

Now's not the time to worry about the Penguins

So they've lost. Twice, actually.

There might be some panic in the faces of fans, but it's too early to get upset about the Pittsburgh Penguins' two losses to the Washington Capitals.

As the higher seed, the Capitals have home-ice advantage. So they've won their two home games. No big deal. Teams are supposed to win at home.

Now it's the Penguins' turn.

Game 3 is at Mellon Arena. If they lose that, well, it's over.

But they just as easily could win Games 3 and 4, sending the series back to D.C. for Game 5.

There's an old saying that a series never gets interesting until the home team loses.

That still applies here.

There's still time to reverse those one-goal losses.

The time to do it begins Wednesday.