After sitting up all night anxiously wondering what the scribes would have to complain about last night, I tear open the papers to find…nothing. Well, there’s always something. Gordon Edes seems to be grumbling beneath it all about all the different lineups Grady Little is putting out there. Even when it works, as it did last night with the previously frigid Ortiz and Giambi both getting big hits last night. Jeff Horrigan writes about the Sox being like the weather yesterday, extremes of hot and cold. Horrigan and Sean McAdam also think these early season comeback games may reap benefits later in the season. David Heuschkel writes that it all came together for the Sox last night. The pen, the bats, the defense, it was all there. After seemingly months of writing about indoor track, golf, and women’s college sports, (perhaps at his choosing, you never know) Bob Ryan returns to weigh in on a major league team. He witnessed a save last night and needed to go out have a drink to celebrate the first career save of young Brandon Lyon. Tony Massarotti has more on Lyon and continues to push forth his own theory that there is no commitment to CBC, the Sox are just using that as an excuse until a real closer emerges from the pack. I don’t think that’s the case, but what do I know? Why would they put themselves in ridicule and be accused of trying to “reinvent the game” if they are really just trying to find a traditional closer? Kevin McNamara completes the trilogy of Brandon Lyon articles. Mike Shalin has a couple of sidebar articles, with one on David Ortiz and the other on Jeremy Giambi. Edes also teases a one-on-one interview with Lou Piniella which will air on the Globe SportsPlus tonight. Ah, the Globe found something negative to report on, yup those Monster seats are dangerous. Surprised Shaughnessy didn’t write on this today. Edes’ notebook reports on a fan taken off on a stretcher after taking a ball in the face before the game. Horrigan’s notebook looks at Jason Shiell, fresh up from Triple-A to replace Howry. McAdam’s notebook has more on Shiell. Heuschkel’s notebook looks at the work being done with Mendoza to try to correct his struggles.
With the Bruins on tonight, the Red Sox get bumped once again to ATT3. This isn’t good news for Sox fans in the Nashua area, who I hear are unable to get the games when they’re moved to ATT3, since that channel is used for another purpose in that area. The second largest city in NH, less than an hour from Boston, and they can’t watch these games.
Jim O’Brien did give Walker and Pierce some rest last night, a wise move. The Pistons were doing the same, not even playing starter Cliff Robinson. They’ll play the Pacers, not the Sixers after all. Steve Bulpett writes about the game and a fresh start for the Celtics. Shira Springer looks at Antoine, staying in the locker room long after his teammates had departed, to watch the end of the Nets/Pacers game to see where the Celts would be going for the first round. He then weighs in on Indiana. Mark Murphy has a similar piece for the Herald. Carolyn Thornton recaps the game, and looks ahead to the Pacers. Christopher Price wraps up the game for the Metro. Jon Paul Morosi looks at the grizzled veterans on the end of the Celtic bench who hope to add experience to the Celtics playoff run. Peter May weighs in on the retirement of MJ. Price also looks at ironman Eric Williams, who played all 82 games. In Springer’s notebook, Williams is hoping that durability can get him a contract extension. Bulpett’s notebook looks a nice 125K bonus Tony Battie got last night for the Celtics winning # 44.
Is it possible to have a press conference, but not say anything? That’s what those who attended the Patriots predraft conference yesterday are wondering. Michael Smith seems to admit to an almost grudging respect for Bill Belichick’s ability to not tip his hand in which direction they’re going for the draft next weekend. Detective Michael Felger attempts to piece together the clues dropped by Belichick in an effort to figure out what direction the team is going. Michael Parente looks at the plethora of draft picks and wonders what the Patriots might do with them, be it actually using them on players, or wheeling them about in trades. He also looks at the temptation that is Willis MaGahee. For more on MaGahee, Mike Reiss looks at whether he is worth the risk, and goes over many of the other points brought out yesterday. Tom Curran writes that getting Belichick to say who they’re looking to take is as difficult as opening a new CD. Alan Greenberg also reports on the goings on in Foxboro yesterday. Christopher Price and Ian Clark also weigh in on the conference.
The media seems pretty divided on their opinion of Tebucky Jones. Hector Longo criticizes Belichick and the Patriots for going against their stated desire to get younger on defense and trading away a “budding superstar” in Tebucky, “for gridiron flotsam and jetsam” in draft picks. All in all, a pretty scathing piece by Longo. Of course, no one is surprised to read Nick Cafardo taking the same tact. He says Tebucky wanted to be traded two years ago, before the Super Bowl season, when the Pats disrespected him by platooning him with Matt Stevens. He admits it is all about the money. He wanted to get paid. On the other hand, Mark Farinella says America is great, because “where else could a team turn a flawed player like Tebucky Jones into three draft choices?” So either Tebucky is a “budding superstar” who was let go for nothing, or a “flawed player” and the Patriots were shrewd in getting as much as they did for him. Time will tell which is the right version.
Today’s Hockey articles are brought to you by the Masters of the Obvious. Kevin Paul Dupont looks ahead to tonight’s Bruins/Devils game 5. Expect the unexpected, he says. Stephen Harris says the Bruins chances tonight are much higher if they can score the first goal. (interesting theory there) Karen Guregian says to expect a much tougher Martin Brodeur tonight. (ya think?) Mark Blaudschun says the Bruins know that the odds are still stacked against them. (seriously?) Elliot Denman says Pat Burns and the Devils will be ready for anything the Bruins throw at them. (no kidding…) Bill Reynolds says Boston is no longer a hockey town. (Um, no, not since Orr retired… 25 years ago…) Dupont’s notebook updates us on Samsonov’s sore wrist.
NESN has Bruins/Devils at 7:00. ATT3 has Red Sox/Devil Rays at 6:00. ESPN2 has Oilers/Stars at 7:30.