Cellar Dwellers No More

The Bruins lifted themselves out of the cellar of the Northeast division for the first time since November with a 3-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens last night. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell looks at the Bruins continuing to right their ship and move up in the win column. Steve Conroy says that Bruins fans got their entertainment value from this one. Joe McDonald acknowledges the big win, but notes that and even bigger weekend is on tap for the Bruins. Douglas Flynn notes that the Bruins are not only climbing in the standings, they’ve become must-see TV with the likes of the end-to-end rush that Patrice Bergeron pulled off last night. Jackie MacMullan has a look at Tim Thomas, who came up big once again and has cemented his spot as the #1 goaltender for the foreseeable future. She talks to Mike O’Connell among others about the emergence of Thomas this season. Thomas could end up saving O’Connell’s job along with the shots he’s been stopping.

Steve Buckley looks at Glen Murray returning to the Bruins with a bang last night. Mike Loftus has a look at Wayne Primeau, who wants to be on the ice as much as he possibly can. Conroy has a look at rookie defenseman Andrew Alberts logging some time at forward last night. Burrell’s notebook has more on the return of Murray to the Bruins’ lineup. Conroy’s notebook has Brad Boyes getting robbed of a goal last night. McDonald’s notebook has more on Murray.

Peter May has Danny Ainge saying that he feels the Celtics are slowly getting closer to where we’d all like them to be. Mark Murphy has more on Ainge who wants the Celtics to become more than just a one and done playoff team. Mike Fine has a look at the Celtics still trying to mesh together as a team. Michael Muldoon’s article in the Lawrence Eagle Tribune is entertaining, as he has players present and past blasting Mark Blount. Former Celtics tough guy from the 50′s and 60′s Jim Loscutoff (“Loscy” in the Garden rafters) proclaiming “I probably would have punched him in the nose,” after Blount skipped down the court Monday night in Minnesota against this former team. Scott Souza has a look at Wally Szczerbiak trying to get settled in with his new team.

Shalise Manza Young has a quick look at Gerald Green, who is expected to be with the Celtics this weekend as they swing through Florida after tonight’s game with the Clippers. Murphy’s notebook has more on Green, who is expected to rejoin his Developmental League team next week. Fine’s notebook has Delonte West accepting his omission from the sophomore squad of the rookie challenge during All Star Weekend.

We’ll have much more football this afternoon in our Super Bowl edition of SporTView, but for now, I just can’t let this morning’s article by Ron Borges pass. There are several shots in the article at the Patriots and their way of conducting business. At one point, Borges writes:

Upshaw claimed high-revenue owners such as Bob Kraft and the Cowboys' Jerry Jones have repeatedly taken advantage of the present system because ''they're not spending on the players. They're not spending to the cap. They're spending on everything else."

An NFLPA source familiar with those numbers said the Patriots had spent only $76 million on player salaries last year despite a cap of $85 million, while Jones spent only $66 million on revenue of more than $300 million. The source produced NFLPA documentation to support those figures. Washington's Daniel Snyder was not lumped in that group because, according to the union's figures, he spends to the cap.

I’m not sure which documentation that this “source” was referring to. Borges apparently takes the source at their word, despite the fact that the NFLPA Web Site seems to directly contradict those numbers. I’m going to leave it to civilian cap guru Miguel to sort this out. Miguel says this morning on the Patsfans.com messageboard:

Well, look at

NFLPA Salary Document from November 2005

Page 9 - The Cowboys are listed as spending $82 million.
Page 13 - The Patriots are listed as spending $94 million.
Page 20 - The Redskins are listed as spending $66 million.

I find it hard to believe that the Patriots spend only $76 million in 2005 when Brady took home $15.5 million, Dillon - $4 million, Green $3.4 million, Colvin - $2.6 million, Mankins - $3 million, Light - $7.5 million, McGinest - $2 million, Seymour - $4.5 million, Starks - $3.5 million, Vrabel - $6.7 million while having Adam playing under his franchise tag of $2.5 million and having 3 players playing under the RFA tag of $1.43 million.

I trust Miguel a whole lot more than I trust Ron Borges and any of his “sources”, whom I’m sure are NOT trying to skew the numbers in favor of the players. No way. I just know that they have no ulterior motive other than bringing the truth about Bob Kraft, Bill Belichick and Scott Pioli to the readers of the Boston Globe.

If you’ve never been to Miguel’s page, I highly recommend a visit.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the Red Sox tried again recently to persuade the Angels to make a deal for Manny Ramirez.

David Scott has a monster Super Bowl edition of Shots.

As mentioned, we’ll have much more this afternoon/evening in this week’s Super Bowl weekend post.