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This and that


Each week I'll talk about the world of sports.

  • The NBA has its dream matchup with the Celtics and Lakers battling for the championship. Talk about two teams with great tradition, these clubs have totaled 30 of the previous 61 NBA championships. It has all the star power with Kobe, Gasol, Odom, Pierce, Garnett, Ray Allen. It should be super, scintillating, sensational, but my pick is the Lakers in six games. Too much Kobe and the Laker offense as Phil Jackson collects his 10th championship ring.

  • The Tampa Bay Rays are for real after a sweep of the Chicago White Sox. Scott Kazmir has been pitching lights out as he keeps getting those Ks, baby! Everyone seems to contrbute, as Gabe Gross, who started the season with the Brewers, had the walk-off homer on Sunday.

  • Can anyone stop Jay Bruce? I have seen this young man play in spring training and down in the lower minors and I felt all along he was going to be the real deal. Bruce had 13 hits in his first 22 at-bats since being recalled from the minors. WOW!

  • Isn't it amazing to see what has happened to Justin Verlander and C. C. Sabathia. These are two good young pitchers who have simply struggled this season.

  • Brian Urlacher made a great move by showing up and camp over the weekend. My friends, the Bears would be smart to reward him for his great career by flat out showing him the money. Chicago would not be the same without that #54 on the defensive side of the football.

  • It will be interesting to see how the Jason Taylor scenario plays out in Miami. Taylor is still a very capable defensive threat, but Bill Parcells was not happy when his star opted to compete in Dacing With the Stars. Can Miami get real value if it deals Taylor? Time will tell but this is already a potentially ugly situation.

  • Sorry to see the Williams sisters go out so early at the French Open. Both lost in the third round to players in the top 30 of the world rankings. On the men's side, it looks like the big three will walk through to the semifinals as Rafael Nadal is still the big favorite, with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic also in the hunt.

    Dick Vitale coached the Pistons and the University of Detroit before broadcasting ESPN's first college basketball game in December 1979. Send him a question for possible use on ESPNEWS.