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Saturday, April 16, 2011
Howard Johnson, Kevin Ritz on All-Hotel Team


Page 2 does not offer loyalty points for frequent stays, so feel free to live vicariously through our All-Hotel team. We'll leave the light on for ya.

Bobby Conrad: The former Clemson point guard won't be caught with Paris Hilton, but he does have a couple of things in common with the heiress. Conrad's the first name of the corporate patriarch and the name of one upscale brand in the group. That's the first thing. The second? Both Paris Hilton and Bobby Conrad are familiar with courtrooms -- the former as a defendant, and the latter as a federal prosecutor from 1989-2001 and as a judge in the Western District of North Carolina.

Rodney Hampton: When parent company Hilton upgraded its Hampton Inn division in 2004, it encouraged consumers with the "Make It Hampton" campaign. The conglomerate may have gotten its idea from the New York Giants, who made Rodney Hampton one of the NFL's 10 most frequent rushers in 1991, '92, '93 and '94. With 51 touchdowns in 102 games, he was an exceptionally productive player.

Ham Hyatt: Robert Hamilton Hyatt, like many baseball players, did his fair share of traveling around North America. Before and after enjoying a seven-year big-league career in Pittsburgh, St. Louis and New York, Hyatt rested his head in Vancouver, B.C., Kansas City, Chattanooga, Little Rock, Toledo, and Vernon, Calif. He was born near Asheville, N.C., and died in Spokane, Wash. That's pretty good plate coverage.

Howard Johnson: Certainly in 1991 and in other points of a 14-year MLB career, Johnson outperformed the motel brand he bears as a name. The Met led the National League in homers (38) and RBI (117) in 1991 and was in his prime when the company revitalized itself with considerable upgrades that prompted the slogan, "This is Howard Johnson?"

Kevin Ritz: The Tigers and Rockies pitcher stayed in his namesake's properties frequently in a nine-year MLB career, thanks to union-negotiated agreements that require teams to lodge players in top-of-the-line hotels in each city they visit.