Another big Boston sports day

Another big Boston sports day is on tap. Starting with Pedro Martinez attempting to snap a two game Sox losing streak in Baltimore. Game starts at 3:00 on Fox 25. Then we have both the Celtics and Bruins in critical playoff matches. It might be reasonably safe to say whomever wins each of these games tonight is going to win the series. Catch the Bruins in Montreal on NESN at 7:00 and the Celtics at home on Fox Sports New England and TNT at 8:00.

I was watching the WB56 Sportscast last night, and the lead for the sports was the Red Sox with the big captions “Wheels are falling off”. Just a tad cynical. The team drops two games in a row, both of which ended with the tying or winning run at bat or on deck, and the “wheels are falling off”? This is a typical example of how the Boston media loves to stir up the fans and be negative. The team is off to a tremendous start, I don’t understand the need for this sort of thing.

A Parade…Marching Bands…School let out

A Parade…Marching Bands…School let out early…Buffalo LOVES Drew. Ralph Wilson speaks to roaring crowds welcoming Bledsoe to Buffalo, telling Drew he’s “given the whole area a spark.” Presented him with his official number 11 jersey…Bledsoe comes to the microphone…a very exciting day for him and his family, has always admired the Buffalo Bills and their organization. His first regular season game was in Buffalo, coming full circle now, hopes to end his career there, enjoyed his 9 years with the Patriots, his treatment there and experience and now looking forward to the next stage of his career. He’s coming there for one reason…to win football games.

Questions from reporters…comparing coming into the league as a rookie with joining this Bills team. Drew thinks this situation is better, the Bills are better than those early Patriots teams…When the trade happened, he was in the Hospital with his son, and there was a “range of emotions” Very excited when he found out he was going to be a Bill…Feels great to be wanted coming in here after not being able to get his starting job back last season…Had confidence all along that he would end up in a good situation, that’s as far as he’ll comment about the trade process…Extremely excited to get back on the field, know’s he can still play at a high level, can’t wait to answer critics (Read:Belichick) …refused to talk about comments made by NE players regarding certain things Brady brought to the team that Drew didn’t….said the answer he’s going to give is his play on the field…a ton of talent on that Buffalo team, he welcomes the high expectations, expects the team to win alot of games and expects to be held to a very high standard of play…looks to be “very successful very quickly”…Thinks the weapons the Bills have are probably more than the Patriots have….defenses can’t take away one guy and stop the team….no lasting effects from injury last year…then the media was dismissed to go out to the “rally”

This was all broadcast on WEEI

NFL Films will be producing

NFL Films will be producing an additional special video just for Patriots fans.

“We thought that a record half million copies of our Super Bowl XXXVI highlight would satisfy the hunger that Patriots fans have for their team,

Bob Ryan has a well

Bob Ryan has a well done tribute to Dick Schaap, who will be honored posthumously at the True Heroes of Sports Awards Banquet. Schaap, a giant in the world of Sports Media did not confine his interests or talents to just sports. He

Bill Simmons says goodbye –

Bill Simmons says goodbye — with a touch of sadness — to Bledsoe.

Troy Brown was on WEEI

Troy Brown was on WEEI this morning with “Dale and Neumy” and talked about losing his “good friend” Drew Bledsoe. He doesn’t think Bledsoe leaving will adversely affect the Patriots next year though. He thinks Brady will continue to get better and improve, as he has some of the best coaches in the game. He had a pretty shaky phone connection, so it was pretty difficult to understand alot of what he was saying. He talked a little about how far that he’s come, that now a receiver can be drafted and called a “Troy Brown clone”. He says the biggest difference this off season in preparation and off season workouts has been that they have less time. Said the Super Bowl “hangover” is something that could be dangerous, and that they need to focus in and listen to their coaches for preparation, and people like himself need to remind everyone that it all starts over now, everyone is 0-0. He doesn’t worry about Brady though, as he’s there everyday working just as hard as he always has. Neumeier also told Troy that Parcells told him last year that Brown was the best draft pick he ever made in the NFL.

They also talked to Colorado Head Coach Gary Barnett, who had Patriots first round pick Daniel Graham the last few years. He summed up Graham as a “unique combination of skilled athlete and powerful blocker.” He said he’s a “sure bet”. Barnett also mentioned that his son worked for Scott Pioli for the Patriots this past year.

In the Globe today Will

In the Globe today Will McDonough has this pretty weird quote from Tom Donahue: “The day of the Patriots game, it was cold and windy. Raw. In warmups, I watched every throw he made, and under terrible conditions, he threw the ball as well as I’ve ever seen anyone throw it, anywhere. I made up my mind then to try to get him.” So he decided to go after Bledsoe based on watching him throw the ball in warmups ? Just how tough could those “conditions” be? Did he also have 350 pound linemen coming after him as he threw in those “terrible” conditions? McDonough also talked to 3 NFL front office types to evaluate the Patriots draft. Two gave it a good review, one said it wasn’t a good draft.

Dennis and Callahan this morning are making a big deal about the Inside Track report this morning about Tom Brady “bumping and grinding” with Mariah Carey at a recent New York party. Being the savvy, understated political analysts that they are, they also make a big deal about the news in the same report that Brady has decided not to get involved in Senator John Kerry’s campaign. As D&C are wont to do, they are using these snippets of “news” to rile up callers and already get them into a panic about Brady’s and the Patriot’s future. When will the listeners learn not to get caught up in these cheap tactics?

Jim Baker has some numbers for the weekend’s events, while Jim Greenidge talks to C’s announcer Sean Grande and also gives some quick TV numbers.

Peter Gammons has jumped back onto the Red Sox bandwagon, praising them last night on “Baseball Tonight”. He mentioned the “Dirt Dogs” theme that arose early last season, and how the Sox have great energy and leadership in Nomar, who he compared to Bagwell, Ellis Burks and Jeter, as the great leaders in the game. He cited the Red Sox also as having some of the great bench players in the game. We’ll see where Peter stands if the Sox ever go on a little tough streak. Then he’ll be suggesting they trade Manny for Mike Hampton and Larry Walker, or rip them for past deeds and bad contracts. Perhaps he’ll turn on them for how they treat Lou Merloni, who was said by a Sox front office type last week to the “safe”, and then sent to the minors a few days later.

After an off-day to let everyone catch their breath from Sunday, local sports spring back into action tonight with the Red Sox taking on the Orioles at 7:00 on NESN, and the Bruins taking on Montreal in game 3 of their playoff series at 7:00 on UPN 38.

Amusing story on WWZN yesterday

Amusing story on WWZN yesterday afternoon. Just before 6:00, the McDonough group was talking with former Bruin Ted Donato, who just finished a season with the Manchester Monarchs. Donato was relating a story that happened to him while he was at Harvard. His team had not qualified for the NCAA Hockey tournament that year, so they booked a trip to California for spring break. While there, they got tickets to a taping of “The Price is Right”, Donato was humorous in relating how his “subtle” Boston accent made it past the screeners of the show, and eventually he was called up from the audience to be a contestant. With his nametag reading “Edward” he took his place in contestant’s row, and the first item was a “portable word processor” — which rather dates him — he was at first was outbid by a woman who used the cheap tactic of bidding a dollar more than he did. He had help from the audience, as one of his friends had watched the show everyday for 6 weeks in preparation. Finally, he did onto the show. Bob Barker was very nice to him, and his prize for his game was to be…..A NEW CAR…. (Cue music) he played the dice game, and fell 1 point short. He joked that he still can’t figure out how he lost. Then he got to spin the Big Wheel for a chance to get to the “Showcase Showdown” he spun for 75 cents, and stayed with that, after the two other contestants went over, he was in the showdown. The other contestant passed the first package over to him, which included a Jet Ski, Satellite dish and other items. He said during the break before the winner was announced they went over how the celebration would be done…a handshake, a hug, etc. All his friends were near the stage; ready to storm it if he won….he didn’t win. He then talked about telling his mother 4-5 days later that he had been on the show and his mother didn’t even tell his father as she thought he was drunk or something. He has the tape and sometimes it gets popped in the VCR to embarrass him. The story was very funny as told by Donato, who is headed off to the World Championships next week.

Bledsoe talk running rampant on

Bledsoe talk running rampant on WEEI today. Peter King on “Dale and Neumy” compared Brady to Nomar in terms of his mindset and preparation. He said how a week after the Pro Bowl, Brady was in the Patriots Weight room at 3:00 on a Saturday afternoon by himself, lifting. It was interesting though to hear more from Michael Felger about the phone line incident coming out of the Patriots “War Room” on Saturday. Apparently a phone line was crossed up and allowed anyone listening on a certain phone to hear everything that was being discussed in the room. Felger reported it briefly in his “Patriots Notebook” feature in the Herald today, he expanded on it on the “Big Show” this afternoon, talking about another “outlet” (Read:Globe) in town that was taking advantage of it to get scoops. Felger said he thought it was unethical. Glen Ordway also openly disagreed with Larry Bird in an assessment Bird made of Antoine Walker’s game. Bird had said Walker should be under the basket more and stop shooting so many 3′s. Ordway says that the NBA has changed from the time Bird played, and that Walker is a product of this new NBA and that his game is what it is.

Was yesterday the greatest day

Was yesterday the greatest day in Boston Sports? 4 games, 4 victories. 2 of them playoff games held in the same building. A trade of the man, who along with Bill Parcells, resurrected football in New England. Patriots draft another sleeper QB with a cannon arm and great leadership skills. Could any fan ask for anything more in one day?

It was truly a day for the ages. Not to mention the clickers. Mike Dunleavy, calling the Celtics game with Bob Costas, predicted 50 points for Allen Iverson before the game. For the first quarter anyway, it looked like he might be right. Dunleavy also goofed saying the Celtics had only played the Sixers once since the trade that netted Rodney Rogers and Tony Delk. He said the Celtics won the only meeting. Not true, they played twice, the second game being the one in which Iverson injured his hand, and the Sixers still won. They did mention that Iverson’s conditioning could be a factor later in the game, making the observation that Allen isn’t a big fan of extra workouts. Either he was tired, or it was the Celtics “Mirage and five” defense which shut him down the rest of the game. Celtics need the same intensity Thursday night (8:00 TNT) or the series will quickly be tied heading into Philadelphia. Peter Vescey said later in the day that the player he was most impressed with during the Celtics game was Antoine Walker. After Vescey’s comments about Larry Bird yesterday, Walker should be ashamed to be recognized by Vescey.

Johnny Damon, who didn’t expect Grady Little to put him in the lineup, led the Sox to a doubleheader sweep of the Royals. Damon, booed every at-bat, responded with a 2 run homer in game one, and a grand slam in game two. Best prediction of the day: The Royals, conceding game one, put in a Rule V. draft pitcher, who quickly got pounded. Jerry Remy said as Manny Ramirez strolled to the plate, “I bet Manny’s been chomping at the bit to get in there against this pitcher.” Ramirez then CRUSHED the first pitch he saw for a mammoth homer to left.

It wasn’t clear what the broadcast schedule for the doubleheader was. More than one person turned to NESN around 5:30, expecting NESN Extra Innings to still be going, to find the 2nd game in progress and the Sox trailing 2-0.

Patriots.com was indeed the first the break the news that Drew Bledsoe had been traded to the Bills. It took some time for other media outlets to pick up on this posting. ESPN didn’t mention the web site announcement until nearly an hour after it was first posted.

The Sunday night sports shows on WBZ 4 and WHDH 7 were a whirlwind of talk and discussion. “Sports Extra” on channel 7 had the disadvantage of only being a half hour long. Jackie MacMullan and Michael Holley were on to discuss Bledsoe and the Celtics. “SportsFinal” on channel 4 and “Sportsfinal overtime” had more room for discussion, and was much more memorable, bringing in Nick Cafardo and Michael Felger, who along with Bob Lobel and Scott Zolak were able to debate the merits of the Bledsoe trade. Cafardo insisted on comparing this with the departure of Roger Clemens, saying that Patriots manangement thinks that Bledsoe cannot play any more, just like the Red Sox thought Clemens was done. He thinks Bledsoe could come back to haunt to Pats, much like Clemens. Felger correctly countered that argument, pointing out that the situations were totally different. The Patriots have their replacement for Bledsoe, and they *had* to get him out of town for the good of the team. With Clemens, it was just about the money, and Clemens chose to leave on his own and alienated the fans along the way. Zolak dismissed “sources” earlier in the week who said that Bledsoe had said he would rather stay here and compete for the job rather than go to the Bengals or Bills. The show followed with Bob Ryan talking Celtics. He’s “in like” with this team. Not loving them yet, but likes them alot. Yesterday’s pregame with the legends walking across the court before the game impressed him, along with the action of the first quarter, which he likened to the good ol days of the NBA. The last segment was with Ryan and Sean McAdam, and they talked Red Sox. McAdam made the comment that this was the best Red Sox team *up the middle* that he’s seen in his lifetime. Lobel wasn’t listening for the the whole sentence and didn’t hear the “up the middle” phrase, which led to a few awkward moments as he tried to get over his shock at what he thought he heard.

WEEI and WWZN should be interesting today. We’ll keep you posted.

In the papers today, the old cranky guys actually show a pulse….Dan Shaughnessy says Welcome to winnersville.” Bob Ryan gives the Celtics an A+, Steve Buckley says this was for the fans. Even Michael Gee chimes in, saying to the Celtics “Congratulations, fellows. This old fuddy-duddy wasn’t sure you had such simple wisdom in you.” I’m sure they’re grateful for the compliment. Ron Borges does attempt to throw a wet blanket on the Bledsoe trade.