May 17, 2005
Dontrelle Willis and Jon Garland:
7 starts, 7 wins: Who will blink first? In must-see MLB today, D-Train (7-0) pitches vs. L.A. and Garland (7-0) throws vs. Texas. (He needs a nickname.)
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:

Make it stop. Please.

Someone stop the Yankees, before they win again. Nine straight?!

Two weeks feels like forever: Was it so long ago that we gleefully sat shotgun on the Yankees' plummet into last place in the AL East?

Apparently, that's as bad (or as good) as it's going to get this season; hope you remembered how it felt. The future looks bleak for Yankee-haters.

The thing is, the team has all the same things wrong with it that it did two weeks ago – old players, ineffective pitching, Jason Giambi. What changed?

Well, one of those old players (Tino Martinez) put the team on his back. Even Bernie Williams got into it, hitting a grand slam on Monday to beat Seattle.

It also helped that they got away from Yankee-killing Tampa and moved on to Oakland and Seattle, two of the AL's more pitcher-friendly lineups.

Maybe the crosstown rival Mets can stop them this weekend.

Looking ahead even further: Don't even think about the prospects of a sizzling Bronx team hosting the Red Sox a week from Friday.

Yes, they're baaaack. Help us all.

NBA: "Pivotal" G5s
80 percent of teams that win Game 5 of a 2-2 NBA playoff series go on to advance. With that in mind ...

Let's think back to the Spurs' last experience with a Game 5 in the conference semifinals.

There was the Tim Duncan game-winner (or so we thought), followed by a capital-S "Shot" from L.A.'s Derek Fisher that effectively broke the Spurs.

Up 2-0 in the series, the Spurs lost four straight to the Lakers, with the Game 5 finish becoming the defining moment of the 2004 playoffs.

Even given how clinically the Spurs go about their business, you'd have to imagine that the Spurs won't forget.

Don't expect a let-up, even with 0.4 seconds left to play.

Chapman Reaction
It was mid-1980s Kentucky: Does anything surprise you, even a "ban" on interracial dating?

"Bad Judgment" was an official wing of the Athletics Department.

Chris Webber: Calls newspaper report of rift with AI "lie"
U.S. Open: Changing court color from green to blue. Cool!
Kiki Vandeweghe: Eyeing the Cavs' top job? (via NY Post)
Onterrio Smith: Returns to Vikings practice with new rep
Cubs pitching (yet again): Zambrano has MRI on sore elbow
A's losing streak: Snapped at 8 games (beat Red Sox, 6-4)
Glazer vs. Man U Fans
Who else is loving the Man U fans' allergic reaction to Malcolm Glazer's purchase of their team?

Not that I fault him for doing it: The team is one of the most valuable sports properties on the planet. It's a great business move.

But imagine if, say, French billionaire Francois Pinault bought the Green Bay Packers. Now imagine the fan backlash in Wisconsin.

You can't find that kind of fansanity every day. That's why this story is worth following, even if you don't care about soccer.

Coming Wednesday: What can Glazer do to win over the fans? (Send your ideas via the "Email Us" link at the bottom of the page.)

Selig uses Congress: Flips the script and tells the union that if they don't support his 50/100/Life plan, he'll support Congress' idea for a federally mandated two-year ban on first offenses.

NBA up next: No players have yet agreed to show up on Thursday for the NBA's PT in D.C. (Call it "Puff, Puff, Passing.")

Maybe the players are worried that Congress will ask about more than steroid testing?

Huggins Done?
Cincinnati declines to renew his deal after 2006-07 season. Maybe he'll look elsewhere; maybe he'll go to the NBA.

The one thing we know for sure? Graduation rates will go up. (Hey, they can't get any worse.)

Ford's Draft Math
The next six weeks, Chad Ford's Insider reports are must-read for anyone who loves the run-up to the NBA draft.

I won't spoil his rankings of all the underclassmen who declared, but he finally put some numbers on what we all knew was crazy math:

49 players are vying for 30 first-round draft slots. The bright side for the NBA? The NBDL will get a talent boost.

Ohio State Busted?
Nine NCAA violations in men's and women's basketball and football? Sure, we all knew it was coming, but it's a good moment to re-spark a good idea:

It's time to shut down Ohio State's athletics. Just for one year. (Players keep their scholarships, but competition is cancelled.)

Because the program's out-of-control boosters have metastasized into a problem so big it has overrun the institution.

Does it punish everyone, not just the offenders? No more than the constant barrage of violations and accusations.

The school needs to get its house back in order, then it can get back to competing.

The alternative? Some OSU program is headed for a "death penalty" violation down the road.

L.A. Angels of ...
California Assembly accuses the Angels of false advertising. (What, the "of Anaheim" doesn't shout "We're not REALLY from L.A.!")
Today on
Quickie live!
NBA Daily Dime
Chad Ford on NBA draft
Don't Try to Take 'Em Over:
Don't mess with Cheeseheads
Pry from Davis' cold hand?
What a roster/payroll mess!
Unless you want to spend ...
They don't want to hear it

More NBA Game 5s tonight: Pacers at Pistons, the series tied at 2. Indiana has no fear, of course, but how will they rebound from Game 4?

NCAA tells athletes "buyer beware" when it comes to dietary supplements. Right, "supplements." (via USA Today)

Jack Nicklaus watch: British Open will be the last tournament of his career. Sure to make the first two rounds must-see, before he misses the cut.

NBA offseason watch: Kenyon Martin had his knee scoped. Considering that being a high-riser IS his game, that's a big deal.

MLB's deadline for wannabe owners to submit bids for the Nats is 5/31. Still time for Malcolm Glazer to get in on the action! (via Wash Post)

Stop the presses: The NHLPA won't hold its membership meeting later this month, because there's nothing new to report. Go figure ...

Sponsored Links