Globe: Brady On Track For ’09 Opener

Christopher L. Gasper and Shira Springer report in this morning’s Boston Globe that Tom Brady is now dropping back and throwing passes, and his rehab has progressed to the point that he is expected to be ready for the season opener in September.

The Herald picks up on the Globe reports, but never gives credit to where the information came from. Do we really think they have their own sources on this story? The professional thing to do would be to at least acknowledge that the Globe was the source of those reports.

In a case of good/bad timing, Dan Shaughnessy says Brady has gone soft. Of course, this column is pure satire, he’s actually mocking many of the ridiculous things some people are saying about the Patriots QB these days, but Shaughnessy has written so many serious thing of this ilk before that some are likely to think he is being serious. On the other hand, I think Peter Gelzinis just might be serious.

Mike Reiss reports on the Patriots adding longtime Titans GM Floyd Reese as a senior football adviser to their personnel department. Nick Caserio will manage the daily operations of the department. Karen Guregian has more on what Reese will bring to the Patriots. Shalise Manza Young has more on the front office moves. Christopher Price has Reese planning on being here for a while.  Ben Swasey has the Patriots hoping to address the void left by Scott Pioli’s departure. Brian MacPherson says that this April’s draft could make or break the Patriots. Glen Farley says that contract negotiations is one area that Reese will assist in. Andy Vogt also reports on the hiring of Reese.

Ron Borges has Ted Johnson among those talking about concussions at a meeting in Tampa yesterday. Bob Hohler has a feature on the effects of head trauma on even high school football players. Price has Heath Evans breaking down the Super Bowl matchups. Borges also has former Patriot Sean Morey trying to put off getting a real job as long as he can.

Gasper’s notebook has Fernando Bryant and Victor Hobson getting to the Super Bowl after all this season, just not with the Patriots, as they had hoped when training camp began. Guregian’s notebook has Matt Leinart praising the job Matt Cassel did this season.

Bruins

A certain NHL commentator stated recently that the Bruins wouldn’t win the East this season because they can’t beat the Washington Capitals. Well, that changed last night as Boston scored a 3-2 win over the Caps.

Fluto Shinzawa says this one wasn’t a gem, but it was a win. Mike Loftus says that this win was a measuring stick for the Bruins. Joe Haggerty says that healthy bodies added up to a Bruins win. Rich Garven has the Bruins putting on an enticing playoff preview at the Garden last night. Steve Conroy has the Bruins padding their Eastern lead with the win.

Kevin Paul Dupont has the Bruins getting reinforcements in the returns of Patrice Bergeron, Milan Lucic, and Andrew Ference. Mike Petraglia has the sounds of the game. Mick Colageo has Bergeron making his presence felt in his return. Stephen Harris has more on the return of Bergeron. Bill Burt has Mike O’Connell rooting for the Bruins even though he is a Kings scout. Dupont reports that the Bruins are working on an extension for Peter Chiarelli.

Shinzaw’s notebook hones in on the return of Bergeron. Loftus’ notebook focuses on the return of Ference, playing in his first game since a fractured tibia suffered on November 13th. Garven’s notebook has more on the reinforcements for the Bruins. Conroy’s notebook has rookie Byron Bitz showing some fight.

Celtics

Marc J. Spears has the Celtics hoping to land four players on the All Star roster. Jim Fenton has the Celtics getting a boost from their bench as of late. Steve Bulpett and Spears’ notebook have Brian Scalabrine suffering a second concussion and likely to miss a few games. Patrick Gilroy has the Celtics hoping that more practices can serve them well in the second half.

Red Sox

Michael Silverman says that the Jason Varitek situation is still in limbo. Dan Lamothe has more on Varitek and the deadline. Darren Garnick says that Varitek is an example of the impact the economy is having on all of us.

Rob Bradford has Mike Lowell getting in his first swings since surgery. Dan Barbarisi and Dom Amore report on Jon Lester and Joba Chamberlain exchanging some friendly barbs at a speaking event.

Alex Speier looks at the retirement of Sean Casey.

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-01-27

NESN’s Beanpot Coverage to be Distributed in Canada

The Beanpot starts next Monday and once again NESN has the coverage, this time with a twist…NESN’s feed of the games is being picked up by Rogers Sportsnet in Canada and will be shown there for the benefit of the families of players from that country.

BOSTON, MA –For the 7th consecutive year, NESN, New England’s most watched sports network, will deliver live and exclusive high definition coverage of the 57th annual Beanpot Hockey Tournament presented by SBLI beginning on Monday, February 2nd. The first game pits #2 Boston University against Harvard at 5:00 PM followed by #11 Boston College battling #3 Northeastern University at 8:00 PM from the TD Banknorth Garden. NESN’s coverage of the Beanpot championship game on Monday, February 9th will begin with Prelude to A Championship, a live, half-hour pre-game show starting at 7:30 PM.

For the first time in tournament history, Rogers Sportsnet will distribute NESN’s coverage of the Beanpot throughout Canada with the potential to reach an additional 7.3 million homes. A total of 24 Canadians play for the four Beanpot schools.

Tom Caron and Andy Brickley return to call the games with Bob Beers and Brendan Walsh teaming up to host Prelude to a Championship and intermission coverage from NESN’s Garden HD studio. Kathryn Tappen returns to serve as the rink-side reporter contributing pre-game, intermission and post-game interviews.

“The Beanpot is a jewel on the New England sports calendar and a must-see event for college hockey fans everywhere,” said Joel Feld, NESN’s executive vice president of programming and executive producer. “We are very excited that Rogers Sportsnet has committed to distributing this year’s tournament throughout Canada, making the Beanpot available in more homes than ever before.”

NESN’s 2009 Tournament coverage will be paired with the one-hour documentary ‘The Beanpot – Boston’s Tournament’. Former Bruin Lyndon Byers hosts this look back at the Beanpot’s most unforgettable moments and previews this year’s games with interviews from all four head coaches. The Beanpot – Boston’s Tournament airs February 1 at 6:30pm, February 2 at 4pm and February 3 at 7pm.

TV38 Renews Revolution Deal

The CBS Television Stations group, of which both WBZ-TV and TV38 are a part of, continues to get cozy with Kraft Sports Productions.

A week after announcing that the preseason games of the New England Patriots and the All Access television program were moving to WBZ-TV, the announcement was made today that the sides have agreed to renew their exclusive television rights agreement to broadcast New England Revolution soccer games.

Here is the release:

Boston, Ma – Tuesday, January 27, 2009 – TV38 (WSBK-TV) today announced that it has renewed its exclusive television rights agreement with The New England Revolution and Kraft Sports Productions. Under this three-year agreement, TV38 will continue to be the team’s only television broadcaster in the Boston market airing all non-nationally televised games. This season’s television schedule is expected to be announced by Major League Soccer tomorrow (1/28/2009).

“We are delighted to continue our exclusive broadcast partnership with the Revs and Kraft Sports Productions,” said Ed Piette, President and General Manager of Boston’s TV38 and WBZ-TV. “The matches broadcast on TV38 have been very popular with soccer fans, and we are glad to be able to bring the games to viewers who might not have a chance to see them otherwise.”

“We’re very pleased to extend our partnership with TV38,” New England Revolution Chief Operating Officer Brian Bilello said. “Our first two years with the station were a tremendous success for us and our fans, and it was an easy decision to continue to partner with TV38 for the next three years. We’re looking forward to further developing our relationship and growing the Revolution’s reach in the greater-Boston area.”

The Revolution games on TV38 will be produced by Kraft Sports Productions and will continue to feature Brad Feldman (play-by-play), Greg Lalas (analyst), and Kristina Akra (sideline). In addition to the Revs’ matches on TV38, Major League Soccer’s national broadcast partners ESPN2 and Fox Soccer Channel will showcase select Revolution matches nationally. And, league Spanish language partner Univision (which also includes the Galavision and Telefutura networks) will carry a selection of Revolution matches to compliment the full slate of games shown in English.

Saturday is D-Day For Varitek, Sox

If you’re tired of this ongoing Jason Varitek/Red Sox catching saga, take heart, it may be coming to an end.

Michael Silverman says that the deadline for Varitek to accept the one year contract offer (which has an option year) from the Red Sox is Saturday. Tony Massarotti says that Varitek might actually prefer just a one year deal from the Sox. Joe McDonald has former teammate Kevin Cash talking about Varitek’s value in the clubhouse. Kirk Minihane just wants the ballad of the captain to end. Mike Fine urges Varitek to take the deal from the Sox.

Silverman and Richard Weir report on Dustin Pedroia’s older brother being arrested for alleged child molestation. Bill Reynolds has Joe Torre roiling the very same waters he used to calm. Ryan Trepanier has former Red Sox prospect Brian Rose being named special assistant and pitching coach for the New Bedford Bay Sox.

Super Bowl

After carefully watching the Senior Bowl last weekend, Chris Warner has a self-admitted ridiculously premature Patriots mock draft on Patriots Daily.

Michael Felger offers up four items, three of them football related. (The other is Varitek.)

Christopher L. Gasper says that despite appearances to the contrary, “Anquan Boldin is not a self-centered wide receiver like Terrell Owens or Chad Johnson.” Karen Guregian looks at the Cardinals other superstar receiver, Larry Fitzgerald, and how his background gave him a head start on stardom. Ron Borges has a piece on Steelers safety Troy Polamalu, while Mike Reiss and Guregian have Hines Ward determined to play on Sunday despite a bad knee.

I’m not sure Tom King has it right. He seems to think Patriots fans are angry at the Cardinals for their performance in Foxboro and will root against them this Sunday. I’m pretty sure the opposite is true, most Patriots fans are going to root for the Cards against the hated Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Globe notebook has Fitzgerald talking about the influence of Randy Moss and Kevin Garnett on him when he was younger. Guregian’s notebook has Ben Roethlisberger denying any rift with his former offensive coordinator, Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt.

Julie Onufrak has a profile of Cold Hard Football Facts founder and lead writer Kerry J. Byrne.

Celtics

Steve Bulpett and Frank Dell’Apa try to sort out Stephon Marbury’s claim that the Celtics have made a verbal commitment to sign him if the Knicks ever buy out his contract. Robert Lee has more on Marbury’s claims of the Celtics interest. Jeff Howe says that the Celtics supposed interest in Marbury just doesn’t make sense.

Paul Flannery says that the Celtics success all starts with the defense. Jim Fenton has a look at Eddie House’s ability to score in bunches. Bulpett’s notebook has Doc Rivers campaigning for his players to be named All Star reserves.

Bruins

Stephen Harris has a midseason Bruins report card. Mick Colageo says that the second half of the season will be a challenge for the Bruins. Mike Loftus has the Bruins set to renew hostilities with the Capitals. Kevin Paul Dupont has the Bruins trying to get back to business as usual. Rich Thompson has Milan Lucic ready to rumble once again.

Lenny Megliola and Bud Barth have Harry Sinden holding court – and changing his mind on Marc Savard.

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-01-26

Celtics Ride Roughshod Over Mavericks

With the NFL season over in New England for weeks now, it was nice to turn on the TV at 1:00pm on a Sunday afternoon and see the local team dominate over another pretty talented squad. This was the case yesterday when the Celtics routed the Dallas Mavericks 124-100 at the Garden.

Kevin Henkin on the BSMW Full Court Press has his Rolling Observations of the Celtics victory.

Frank Dell’Apa has the mentally focused Celtics running out to their eighth straight win. Mark Murphy has everything going right for the Celtics yesterday. Scott Souza depicts this one as just another Sunday stroll for the Green. Bill Doyle has Kevin Garnett showcasing himself in this win – at both ends of the court. Robert Lee says that there is no question that the Celtics are back.

Steve Bulpett has the Celtics setting very high standards for themselves. Marc J. Spears has the Celtics feeling that they’re playing better now than they did during their 19 game winning streak. Tim Weisberg says that the Celtics have refocused on the defensive end – and it shows. Mike Fine has the Celtics getting their swagger back, and coming together as a team.

Dan Shaughnessy writes about how Ray Allen’s shooting routines have served him well. Paul Flannery examines how a hot Eddie House can be completely devastating to the opposition. Jessica Camerato has former Celtics first round pick Gerald Green still trying to shake the image that he is just a dunker.

Dell’Apa’s notebook has Kevin Garnett defending his All Star starting selection against critics like Gary Payton. Murphy’s notebook has Celtics teammates hoping Eddie House gets a shot at the All Star three point shootout. Jim Fenton has Garnett getting the best of Dirk Nowitzki all afternoon. Souz’s notebook has Allen making the case for House in the three point shootout. Doyle’s notebook has Tony Allen still unsure when he’ll play again. Lee’s notebook has more on the quest to get House in the contest.

Red Sox

Rob Bradford reports on the offer made to Jason Varitek, and says that it comes with a deadline. Michael Silverman has more on the offer and the desire by the Red Sox to get this settled, one way or the other.

Patriots

Chris Price has a look at the man who will likely try to fill Scott Pioli’s shoes in the front office – Nick Caserio. He also has a look at Bill O’Brien, who will be stepping into the QB coach role…and possibly more.

Robert Preer has a look at the accommodations that The Hall at Patriot Place has made for those with various disabilities.

Peter Gobis has a look at a local guy heading to Tampa as part of the Super Bowl field crew.

Mike Reiss has a look at the Steelers James Farrior, while Ron Borges looks at the past of James Harrison.

NHL/Bruins

Fluto Shinzawa and Steve Conroy recap the East’s 12-11 shootout win over the West in the NHL All Star game. Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas picked up the win. Joe Haggerty has the Bruins All Stars making the highlight reel.

Glen Farley has the Bruins eager to find out how well their teammates have healed over the break.

Conroy’s notebook has Marc Savard having a blast in the game with three assists. Shinzawa’s notebook discusses the issue of NHL participation in the Olympics.

Lenny Megliola has Worcester putting its best foot forward for tonight’s AHL All Star game. Dave Nordman has Chris Bourque as one of the participants.

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-01-25

Twitter Updates for BSMW on 2009-01-24

Friday Into Saturday Megalinks

Ken from Fang’s Bites here again. After being away from the office for most of Friday and then trying to catch up with some blog housekeeping, I find it’s very late, but I’ll combine Friday’s and Saturday’s links.

This weekend for sports does not have football, but it does have the NHL All-Star Game in Montreal, the Celtics hosting Dallas on the season premiere of the NBA on ABC and the Australian Open continues in Melbourne. The PGA Tour is in Arizona for the Bob Hope Classic and if you care, there’s the U.S. Figure Skating Championships. Check out the Weekend Viewing Picks for an entire listing of sports.

You can also click on the College Basketball Viewing Picks for the national and regional schedule of games this weekend.

Let’s get to the links.

National

USA Today’s Michael Hiestand has a look at NBC Sports hiring two ex-coaches to join an ex-GM for its Super XLIII coverage next week.

USA Today’s Michael McCarthy has the results of the NFL announcer readers poll.

Arash Markazi of SI.com has his pick for Sexiest Sportscaster.

CNBC’s Darren Rovell is down to the Final Four of his “As Seen on TV” products tournament.

Joe Favorito is disturbed by the trend of cutting sports from local TV newscasts.

The Big Lead has an excellent interview with the venerable Al Michaels of NBC Sports.

The Sports Media Watch says the NHL on NBC continues to gain momentum.

Maury Brown of the great Biz of Baseball blog writes that the MLB Network may become a bone of contention down the road.

East and Mid-Atlantic

Nancy Marrapese-Burrell of the Boston Globe writes that Versus is making in-roads in the cable ratings.

Bill Doyle of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette talks with NESN’s Tom Caron who’s calling a lot of hockey this weekend.

Bob Raissman of the New York Daily News writes that HBO plans to fully cover the Shane Mosley-BALCO connection during tonight’s edition of World Championship Boxing.

The New York Post’s Phil Mushnick pays tribute to his late colleague, Jose Torres.

Justin Terranova of the Post talks with ESPN/ABC’s Jeff Van Gundy about his old Knicks team. Justin has five questions for Versus/NBC’s Mike Emrick who will call NHL All-Star Weekend.

Newsday’s Neil Best says if the New York Islanders did leave for Kansas City as they threaten, the team would certainly not receive as much money for TV rights fees. Neil says Miami sports radio host Sid Rosenberg returns to the Imus in the Morning show for next week.

Ray Frager of the Baltimore Sun writes about sports radio personality Anita Marks’ signing of a new contract to stay with her station.

Jim Williams of the DC/Baltimore Examiner writes that the Washington Capitals will have plenty of representation during this weekend’s NHL All-Star Game. And Jim writes that even without football, it’s still a big sports weekend.

South

Doug Nye of The State is still buzzing after watching this week’s South Carolina upset over Florida which was on Fox Sports Carolinas.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald writes about the sports radio ratings for South Florida.

Dave Darling from the Orlando Sentinel says one local station is flipping back to sports.

To the Fort Worth Star-Telegram where Ray Buck talks with ESPN’s Cris Carter and Keyshawn Johnson about Pro Football Hall of Fame candidate Bob Hayes.

The Dallas Morning News’ Barry Horn talks with former Cowboys wide receiver Michael Irvin about his proposed reality show. Barry mentions the end of the Cowboys’ relationship with its flagship radio stations.

David Barron of the Houston Chronicle writes that a local sports radio host picks up some TV duties.

Mel Bracht of the Daily Oklahoman says English sports radio stations may be dwindling in Oklahoma City, but that’s not the case with Spanish sports stations. Mel has his media notes for this weekend.

Midwest

Marc Katz of the Dayton Daily News talks with Cincinnati Reds TV analyst Jeff Brantley.

Michael Zuidema of the Grand Rapids Press looks at the NBC Sports conference call hyping Super Bowl XLIII.

Bob Wolfley from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes about two ex-Super Bowl winning coaches joining NBC’s roster of analysts for next Sunday’s Big Game.

Ted Cox of the Chicago Daily Herald says sports radio station WSCR may have a gift horse waiting in the wings.

Ed Sherman of Chicago Crain’s Business has a quick sports business roundup.

Paul Christian from the Rochester Post-Bulletin looks at Versus’ plans for the NHL All-Star Game.

Dan Caesar of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes that ratings for sports radio went down in the last period. Dan says the Arizona Cardinals fared well in the ratings last week. And Dan has the ratings for the radio stations.

West

Scott D. Pierce from the Deseret Morning News looks at the continued dispute between the mtn. and Dish Network.

Jim Gintonio of the Arizona Republic talks with Phoenix Coyotes’ voice Dave Strader.

Bill Center of the San Diego Union-Tribune talks with new Padres TV voice Mark Neely.

John Maffei from the North County Times has a look at the demise of sports radio in San Diego.

Jim Carlisle of the Ventura County Star writes that the Super Bowl will have plenty of storylines.

Diane Pucin of the Los Angeles Times says getting news out of Lance Armstrong’s comeback in Australia has been difficult.

Tom Hoffarth in the Los Angeles Daily News chronicles TNT’s preparation for Monday’s Cavs-Lakers game. Tom has his usual extensive media news and notes in his blog. Tom looks back at his week in blogging. Tom previews Phil Jackson’s interview with Magic Johnson on Sunday. And Tom has the top 2008 L.A. sports moments as voted by the L.A. Sports Council.

John Ryan of the San Jose Mercury has classless comments from Jay “The Rat” Mariotti.

Gary Washburn in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer has ESPN’s Cris Carter and Keyshawn Johnson split over the Seahawks’ draft options.

Canada

William Houston of the Toronto Globe and Mail feels it’s time to put the NHL All-Star Game to sleep.

That will do it. I’ll be back next week.