April 13, 2004
Miss Missouri:
Wins Miss USA pageant. If ESPN.com covered Miss USA like we did, say, the Masters, the site's front page would shout:
'Show Me' the Honey!

The Lead Item
Two Words For You:

The proof is in the playoffs.

For leading the Nuggets to the postseason (for the first time since '95), Carmelo Anthony deserves to share Rookie of the Year with LeBron.

Is James more talented? Sure: So talented that the Cavs have managed to close their season with a Lottery-securing 3-11 run.

Meanwhile, after a post-All-Star swoon, Carmelo led Denver to a 7-3 record over their last 10 games, in a competitive neck-and-neck-and-neck playoff battle with the Jazz and Blazers.

While Carmelo enjoys a couple noisy playoff games at home, LeBron will be watching his buddy in the playoffs from home.

If voters don't go the "Co-" route, that's not a bad consolation prize for Carmelo.

Bonds: 660
Are we making too much of it? As fans who get breathless about whether or not Omarosa is going to screw Kwame out of an "Apprentice" title, enjoying a live cut-in to watch a milestone at-bat doesn't seem like overkill (except that it took me away from PTI).

But just a heads up: This is nothing compared to the redefinition of "frenzy" as Bonds approaches Ruth at No. 714.

Philly Boo-pener
Who had 2 hours, 41 minutes in yesterday's "How fast will Philly fans crack the BOO! seal on the new park?" As one Phillies fan e-mailed me yesterday, at least it's a nicer place to jeer.

Cubs Struggling
The Cubs' master plan is falling apart: Prior's status has gone from "May" to "Maybe not."

Meanwhile: Maddux got shelled in his Wrigley debut (15 wins in the bank? Still waiting on the first one.)

Spurs, T'wolves: Streaking finish; if only one was in East
Jazz, Blazers: Better off in the Lottery anyway
The Swan: "Rubberneck TV" is appalling -- but addictive
Masters ratings: Down 20 percent; hey, THAT's TV reality
Victoria's Secret fashion show: Too hot for TV? It's a bra
Stamos/Romjin: split; "Full House" guy couldn't handle it
That cracking sound you hear? Broken ankles from people leaping off that crowded preseason "Cubs Win World Series" bandwagon.

St. John's Hoops
College hoops' biggest clean-up job is reportedly going to 38-year-old Kansas assistant Norm Roberts. Aside from "He won't make it worse, will he?" the biggest criteria for this job should be "Can he recruit locally?" Roberts is from Queens; chances are he knows how to use the subway.

Not overheard at Fort Bragg, where Tiger is training this week:

There Phil was just a-walkin
down the street, singing:
Grin on his face and a spring
in his feet, singing:
The putt's good (Putt's good!)
The putt's fine (Putt's fine!)
Putt's good! Putt's fine!
Tiger's prob'ly lost his mind.

NCAA Supports NFL
NCAA honcho Myles Brand must have a PhD in chutzpah. What else would allow him to let the NCAA file a brief to the U.S. Appeals court supporting the NFL's position on Clarett?

More Miss USA
If ESPN.com covered Miss USA, we might also have noted that Lakers owner Jerry Buss was a pageant judge and that Lakers coach Phil Jackson had a front-row seat.

Hey, why worry about a potentially playoff-crippling team chemistry problem when there's a swimsuit competition to evaluate?

Brewers P
Matt Kinney:

My predictions are right so very rarely, that when one comes through (i.e., Bonds will hit No. 660 off Kinney), it's important to note it.
Today on ESPN.com
Page 2: Baseball Misery Index
NFL Draft coverage
IN: Oregon State RB Jackson hot property
NBA Rookie of the Year ballot
Carmelo (co-No. 1)
Calm down: Listed alphabetically
LeBron (Co-No. 1)
Better than hype (but no p'offs)
Dwayne Wade
He shows up; Heat make playoffs
Kirk Hinrich
Can't argue with 6.7 apg
Josh Howard
Mavs find draft-day steal

NBA West Shorthand:
1 seed: MIN's to lose
SA needs W + MIN L
(Otherwise: 3 seed)

2 seed: SAC's to lose
LA needs 2 Ws + SAC L
(Otherwise: 4 seed)

Is Bonds' 660 overrated, like some critics suggest? Well, the West Indies cricket captain set a world record Monday, scoring 400 runs in an intn'l match ...

Atlanta Hawks sorry for playing dirty rap lyrics in the arena on Saturday; no apology yet for offensive play on the court ...

More (not) overheard at Fort Bragg: I don't know, but I been told! (I don't know, but I been told!) Tiger's irons are pretty cold! (Tiger's irons are pretty cold!) ...

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