Bruins Show Some Spark

The Bruins showed signs of life last night, going into Philadelphia and beating the Flyers 5-1. Marc Savard though, is likely done for the season with his grade 2 concussion.

We’ll go with 15 links this morning, as there’s a lot going on:

Sudden ending stirred this Cook – Chad Finn talks to Alice Cook about her release from Channel 4, after 25 years of service.

Ricciardi makes move from front office to studio – Bill Doyle talks to J.P. Ricciardi about his new gig working for ESPN, where he’ll be alongside Nomar Garciaparra on Baseball Tonight.

Ari Fleischer has work cut out for him with Tiger – Jim Donaldson with a look at the tall task facing the former presidential press secretary.

Fired-up Bruins show punch in win – Fluto Shinzawa says that a pregame meeting with GM Peter Chiarelli seems to have gotten the attention of the Bruins, at least for last night.

Bruins show fight against Flyers – Dan Rowinski has more on the win.

Magic, Bird were more than rivals – Howard Bryant says that the story of Magic and Bird, recently portrayed in a book and documentary, is incomplete without looking at the issue of race in 1980’s Boston.

Rivers may have to change ways – Chris Forsberg says that Doc Rivers despises change, but may have to make a few with his team.

John Lackey looks good in spring training start for Red Sox – Ron Chimelis says that the newest Red Sox pitcher looked pretty ace-like yesterday.

Beckett deserves big payday – Mike Fine says that the Red Sox don’t really have any choice to ante up and give Josh Beckett his new contract.

Healthy Delcarmen homed in – Bob Ryan has Manny Decarmen saying that he was injured last season, and it contributed to his struggles on the mound.

Lackey as right as rain – The Globe notebook picks up a few more Red Sox pieces.

The Patriot Way suits Neal and Faulk – Tom E. Curran has the two re-signed Patriots talking about why they want to play their whole careers for this franchise.

Kraft explains moves – Mark Farinella’s Patriots notebook has the team’s owner explaining the thinking of the club this offseason.

Curtis Martin, Terry Glenn Among Best Rookies in Patriots History – Jeff Howe lists out the top rookies in franchise history.

A shot at redemption – Nancy Marrapese-Burrell has a preview of the Hockey East quarterfinal matchups.

Also see Chris Warner’s Q&A With Auburn RB Ben Tate on Patriots Daily.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will address graduates at the UMass-Lowell’s Commencement on Saturday, May 29 at 10 a.m. at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell.

Goodell also will accept a posthumous Doctor of Humane Letters degree for his father, the late U.S. Sen. Charles Goodell, a Republican who was elected to Congress in 1959 and appointed to the Senate following the assassination of U.S. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy in 1968. He established a solid record on issues such as civil rights, the war on poverty and education.

I haven’t been able to confirm this, but a poster on the Radio-Info.com Discussion Board says that WEEI is now broadcasting on WMKK 93.7 HD3. Could be a precursor to the long-rumored WEEI-to-FM move.

So long, Ben Watson, we’ll always have Denver, though his 63-yard catch-and-run tochdown against the Jaguars a week earlier might’ve been even more impressive.

Afternoon Quicklinks

A few links to share this afternoon:

Q&A With Patriots LB Tyrone McKenzie – Chris Warner scores an interview with the Patriots third-round pick of a year ago, who was injured in rookie camp, and missed all of 2009. If you’ve forgotten his story, it’s worth reviewing.

No Harm, No Foul With Nomar – My column in the Metro, written yesterday, hoping to get out in front of all the toxic waste spewed this morning.

A Tale of Two Dans – The blog YFSF (YanksFan/SoxFan) weighs in on Shaughnessy.

Do the right thing – ESPN Ombudsman Don Ohlmeyer weighs in on the Tony Kornheiser suspension, and the Tiger Woods coverage.

Toxic Morning In The Sports Pages

This is one of the low points. Between the Celtics absolutely laying down against the Memphis Grizzlies and all the Nomar-bashing by various columnists, the Boston sports media scene isn’t a pretty place this morning.

Let’s get to the good stuff:

Sox, Nomar ended it right – Jon Couture acknowledges the flaws of both Nomar and the Red Sox, but knows that yesterday was the right thing for both sides. Best column this morning on the topic. (It may behind a pay wall for you, depending on how many times you’ve been to the S-T site this month, but register for free and you’ll probably be able to read it.)

The love never died – Gordon Edes also has a very good piece on Nomar retiring with the Red Sox.

Nomar finds himself welcomed back to ranks of Red Sox royalty – Daniel Barbarisi plays it straight.

Kevin Faulk true to blue – Karen Guregian has the Patriots venerable third down back returning for another season in Foxborough.

Kevin Faulk at home with Pats – Mike Reiss also has a good piece on Faulk.

Will Wilfork’s strong words resonate? – Vince Wilfork talked a lot about leadership yesterday. Tom E Curran looks at whether he’ll be able to change the Patriots locker room.

Q&A With Patriots CB Darius Butler – Chris Warner talks to the Patriots second-year cornerback from UConn about getting ready for his second NFL season. Check back on Patriots Daily this afternoon for another Patriots player interview.

Celts fall to Memphis, 111-91 – Bill Doyle with the game story where the final score says all you need to know.

Uneven C’s still searching for answers – Lenny Megliola looks at the state of the Celtics.

Frustrated Doc Rivers mulls changes – Steve Bulpett says the Celtics coach might shake things up.

Marc Savard gets no justice – Stephen Harris looks at the hit on the Bruins center going unpunished by the NHL.

Ok, I’ll admit to laughing at the opening of Michael Silverman’s article on Julio Lugo today:

Julio Lugo had a suggestion.

“Write something good about me,” Lugo, the former Red Sox shortstop and current Cardinals backup infielder, said yesterday.

Here’s something: It’s a good thing Lugo is no longer with the Sox.

I don’t have as much time as I would like to go into this, but some of these Nomar attacks from the supposedly objective media are beyond belief.

On the Comcast SportsNet website, respected baseball writer Sean McAdam speaking of the Red Sox organization, demanded to know when “did they willfully, purposefully and unapologetically decide to publicly jump the shark?”

In other parts of the column, McAdam uses the terms “cheesy publicity stunt”, “staged event”, “artificial legacy”, “dog-and-pony exhibit”, “contrived, made-for-TV event”, “gimmicky” and “silly trappings” to describe the event.

You can guess what Dan Shaughnessy says about it, opening up by calling Nomar a “Total Fraud.” Other phrases used include “truly nauseating”, “Gag me”, “pathetic effort”, “downright fraudulent” – all in the first four full paragraphs.

He gets down to the crux of the matter here: “In good times and bad, Garciaparra was unnecessarily difficult in all interactions with the media.”

That’s really what all this boils down to, isn’t it?

Even on Twitter, the media was ripping Nomar to each other. This exchange between CSN’s Mike Giardi, Jackie Pepper and Joe Haggerty is a nice example.

(Pepper) @MikeGiardi @hackswithHaggs – ya think Nomar will put up the red tape around his cube at ESPN??

(Haggerty) @jackiepepper @MikeGiardi Wasnt red tape. It was actual redline sewn into carpet at his behest. He screamed “violation” when any1 crossed it

(Giardi) @HackswithHaggs @jackiepepper Ah, memories! Good times for one and all.

Now, I know that Nomar was NOT good to deal with for the media. But he’s been gone from here for almost six freaking years. Time to let go people. Just let it go.

Nomar and the Red Sox have moved on. The venom from the media says a lot more about them than it does about Nomar.

Ted Sarandis Gets Weekend Show on 98.5 FM

Former WEEI nighttime host Ted Sarandis has a new sports talk show, as 98.5 The Sports Hub announced today that he will be joining the station effective immediately.

Sarandis’ show, like his old WEEI program will be called the “Ted Nation Show” and debuts this Sunday, March 14th from 7:00pm to 10:00pm This first show will focus on the NCAA tournament selections which will be announced that day.

The show will begin its regular Sunday afternoon time slot in April.

Sarandis has been the play-by-play voice of Boston College Basketball (ironically heard on WEEI’s airwaves) for the last fifteen seasons.

A  quote from Sarandis passed on by 98.5: ““I am thrilled to be joining what I consider to be the best sports radio station in the country, exclaimed Sarandis. It’s my hope that my TED NATION audience will turn out big time to 98.5 The Sports Hub. I can assure one and all we will cover the Boston sports scene in a comprehensive manner and do it with dignity and class.”

In other words, he’s not going to ALLOW you to drag his show into a MORASS OF NEGATIVITY.

And Pete Sheppard is still unemployed….

Lost Night For Locals

The Celtics and Bruins both dropped tight road games last night, the Celtics falling 86-84 in Milwaukee, and the Bruins losing 4-3 in OT to the Maple Leafs.

The Patriots agreed to terms with Leigh Bodden and Jets special teamer Marques Murrell yesterday.

The big news this morning is that Nomar Garciaparra is going to announce his retirement, and he’s apparently going to do it NFL-style, signing a one-day contract with the Red Sox and retire as a member of the team he’s most associated with. The press conference will take place at 10:30 this morning, and Comcast SportsNet and NESN will carry it.

No regrets – Paul Flannery says that the Celtics at least played hard against a streaking Milwaukee team.

Allen moved to speak after very quiet night – Gary Washburn has Ray Allen speaking out after taking only three shots, and Washburn projects it to be blaming Paul Pierce for not moving the ball.

Look into future not pretty for Celtics – Chris Forsberg says that the Celtics should probably hope they don’t have to face the Bucks in the first round of the playoffs.

Bruins drop overtime decision to Toronto – Dan Rowinski on WEEI.com looks at the Bruins loss.

Bruins blow three leads, lose in OT – Danny Picard also has coverage and talking points.

Ken Fang and Jim Donaldson have Chuck Wilson returning to ESPN Radio, and why that is great news.

Leigh Bodden stays for $22M – Ian Rapoport has the news on Bodden’s new contract with the Patriots.

Okajima quite happy being who, where he is – Daniel Barbarisi has a look at the reserved Red Sox lefty reliever.

Hermida returns as a changed man – Joe Haggerty has Jeremy Hermida facing his former teammates in a much different position from which he left them.

Wakefield’s knuckler really travels well – The Globe’s Red Sox notebook catches you up on a lot of the other events from yesterday.

Also check out Chris Warner’s Q&A With Vanderbilt CB Myron Lewis on Patriots Daily this morning.

On the downside:

Mark Farinella this morning tells us that he’s been too busy watching high school basketball (his job, yes) to pay attention to what the Patriots are doing, writes what he’s read that they’ve done, admits his readers probably have been paying more attention than he has, makes a couple snide comments about Twitter and Blackberry phones, and calls it a day. Why even bother? Just keep covering the high school basketball – which he admittedly does a good job with, and obviously enjoys.

I heard Jon Wallach say this morning on 98.5 that the Patriots only have one guy left on defense who was a part of the last Super Bowl championship – Vince Wilfork. How about Ty Warren and Tully Banta-Cain? The latter might not have played a whole lot, but Warren certainly did.

After Nomar announces his retirement, he will join ESPN as a analyst on various programs such as Baseball Tonight. Get ready for the outrage from media members who will say Nomar is a hypocrite for hating the media so much during his time in Boston, and now he wants to be one of them.

No, Nomar will not be one of YOU. He’s not going to be in the clubhouse with a microphone interviewing players. He will be on a TV set, giving his opinion from afar of what’s happening from the perspective of a former player. There’s a big difference there. So Mike Felger, Dan Shaughnessy, etc, simmer down already….I guarantee this will be a topic they will bring up.

Bodden Is Back With The Patriots – Or Is He?

Last night there was quite a ruckus on Twitter as two very respected football reporters Michael Lombardi and Adam Schefter both reported that Leigh Bodden would be re-signing with the Patriots. Both guys are right far more than they’re wrong, especially Schefter, whose word I pretty much take as gospel these days. Meanwhile, Bodden’s agent, Alvin Keels was posting that nothing was done, or even agreed to.

We’ll see what happens today. If I had to bet, I’m siding with Schefter/Lombardi.

Speaking of the NFL free agency period, while Mike Reiss, Tom Curran, Christopher Price, Shalise Manza Young and Albert Breer have all done their usual solid jobs, I think the star of the first few days has been the Herald’s Ian Rapoport. He’s consistently brought good information, and angles and insight that some of the others have missed at times. The Rap Sheet has become a must-follow destination for Patriots fans, and he has been tearing it up on Twitter as well.

Otherwise, it’s a fairly slow day today with both the Celtics and Bruins off last night.

Selection of Tom Brady Makes 2000 Draft One to Remember – Jeff Howe concludes his series of reviewing the Patriots drafts under Bill Belichick with the coach’s first draft, one that is memorable for a certain sixth-round selection.

Patriots air of infallibility is waning – A good article from Tom E Curran, but headlines like that one really turn me off, and many times make me not want to even look at the article underneath the headline. Who ever said the Patriots were infallible? Who? C’mon. The article itself is candid, frank, without pushing silly agendas, but the headline is just dumb. (I know, Curran probably didn’t create it.)

Fielding more than his share of bad hops – Gordon Edes looks at how Dustin Pedroia used baseball as his focus when off-field things weren’t going so well for him last season. I also enjoyed this blog entry from Edes on Jose Iglesias in which Edes is giddy as a schoolboy over the potential of the phenom shortstop, and wonders if the Red Sox should put him right in the majors to start the season.

Why some Red Sox pitchers like throwing to some Red Sox catchers – The title of Rob Bradfords article this morning explains it all.

Big performances: Young trio impresses – Michael Silverman has a trio of young, gifted and intriguing outfielders making an impression on the Red Sox yesterday.

Beckett, Martinez on learning curve – Sean McAdam with another strong notebook from the action of yesterday.

La Russa still mover, shaker – Bob Ryan talks to Tony La Russa about his 33 years as a big league manager.

Hits like this don’t belong in hockey – Mike Loftus weighs in on the hit that Penguins forward Matt Cooke laid on Marc Savard Sunday.

Marc Savard fuzzy on details – Stephen Harris gets props for catching up with Savard at the Pittsburgh airport yesterday to talk to him about the hit and how he’s feeling.

Lockdown defense steadies KG – Chris Forsberg says that Kevin Garnett’s defensive performance down the stretch on Sunday night should be encouraging to Celtics fans.

Relentless defense critical to Celtics – Steve Bulpett says that the Celtics performance on defense in the last six minutes Sunday night showed that they are still capable of locking down an opponent, and that gives them no excuses going forward.

Also check out Greg Doyle’s Q&A With UNH TE Scott Sicko, who has gathered some interest from pro scouts.

Elsewhere, I was also disappointed with the news that Alice Cook was tossed at Ch. 4 after 25 years of service to the station. With the decreased amount of time that newscasts are giving to the sports segments, it makes sense to keep the rosters small, but I always enjoyed the job that Cook did, both with the sports reports, and on the Patriots pre and post game shows.

Allen Lifts Celtics Over Wizards

Ray Allen nailed a three-pointer with 17 seconds left to give the Celtics a victory over the Washington Wizards at the Garden last night. The Celtics trailed by 13 points midway through the quarter, but managed to turn it on and steal a home victory.

Celtics scuffle, but tough it out – Julian Benbow’s game story has a little story of an exchange between Wizards assistant Sam Cassell and Ray Allen before Allen hit the game winner.

C’s Davis almost had chance to show his ‘Blind Side’ – Jessica Camerato talks to Glen Davis about how close he came to getting the lead role in “The Blind Side.”

Allen has been on the money – Gary Washburn says that Ray Allen is setting up the Celtics for a tough decision this summer.

Finley now playing for his childhood hero – A. Sherrod Blakely with a look at the ties between Doc Rivers and Michael Finley,

Making it on her own – Stan Grossfeld with a feature on Amanda Belichick, daughter of the Patriots head coach, who is working as an assistant lacrosse coach at UMass.

Pats scrambling to get back to the line – Michael Felger praises the Patriots for getting deals done with Vince Wilfork and Tully Banta-Cain, but says they still have a lot of work to do just to get back to even. He expresses his concerns without the hysterics so ear-piercingly on display on his radio show every afternoon.

2001 Draft Picks Richard Seymour, Matt Light Played Major Roles in Patriots’ Dynasty – Jeff Howe with a look at Bill Belichick’s second draft with the Patriots.

Bruins take a hit in Pittsburgh – Joe Haggerty with the game story and talking points from yesterday’s Bruins 2-1 loss to the Penguins.

Concussion KO’s Marc Savard – Stephen Harris reports on a hit to Marc Savard that knocked the Bruins top playmaker out of the game.

Slow start for Buchholz, but not Kelly – Sean McAdam with a good Red Sox notebook, rounding up many items from yesterday.

Bonus links!

Here’s three from yesterday:

Former Patriots star David Givens turns to art after career ending injury – Jody Feinberg of The Patriot Ledger checked with former New England receiver David Givens, who is making a name for himself in the art world with his football career cut short.

Patriots’ best chance to improve is via draft – Jim Donaldson says that since this free agent class is lackluster, the Patriots biggest hope for improvement is in the draft.

Bowden’s progress comes without a hitch – Alex Speier has Michael Bowden making some adjustments with the hope of getting better results.

And also see Chris Warner’s Q&A With Virginia Tech P Brent Bowden – a guy who has met with the Patriots, and given their uncertainty at punter, might be someone to keep an eye on.

Ken Fang has a Review of “Magic & Bird: A Courtship of a Rivals” over on Fang’s Bites on BSMW.

Wilfork Signs, Brian MacPherson To Join ProJo

We’ll lead off this Saturday with the news that Brian MacPherson, who has covered the Patriots and Red Sox for the New Hampshire Union Leader for the last 1 1/2 years, will be leaving to join the Providence Journal staff as a Red Sox reporter, replacing Joe McDonald, who left for ESPNBoston recently.

While the Patriots may not have been as active as some would have liked on the first day of free agency yesterday, they did get some things done, inking Tully Banta-Cain, Vince Wilfork and Stephen Neal to new deals. Wilfork’s 5-year, $40 million deal makes him the highest paid nose tackle in the game.

Before the news broke, Mike Felger could be heard screaming on 98.5 about the Patriots being cheap and stating that they only got into the Julius Peppers sweepstakes as a PR move. Tony Massarotti agreed. “You’re absolutely right, Mike.” (Shocker there, I know.)

Patriots do the right thing in signing Wilfork – Tom E Curran explains why the Patriots needed to reward Wilfork.

Pats ’Fork over dough – Karen Guregian has the team coming up big for Wilfork.

Pats’ moves are smart, not splashy – Mike Reiss likes what the Patriots did yesterday.

Tully Banta-Cain cashes in- Ian Rapoport with a look at the new deal for the Patriots linebacker.

Sox hopeful pitches with special motivation – Daniel Barbarisi with a look at Red Sox pitcher Scott Atchison, who has an ill daughter, and gave up millions in Japan to get her help here.

Tim Wakefield wows ’em – Michael Silverman has the knucklerballer looking strong in his spring debut yesterday.

Please shake this behavior – Gary Washburn looks at how no one in the NBA hates each other any more, and has Doc Rivers wishing it was more like the old days.

It was Rondo to the rescue for Celtics – Jessica Camerato has Rondo and KG leading the Celtics to victory over the 76ers last night.

Celtics not perfect, but making strides late – Mark Murphy has the Celtics perhaps getting their finishing act in order.

Seidenberg shows lift in Bruins’ debut – Fluto Shinzawa looks back at the first game as a Bruins for Dennis Seidenberg.

Bruins Get A Win, Patriots Quiet.

The Bruins picked up a home win against Toronto last night, with Tim Thomas in net.

NFL Free Agency began at midnight, and things have been very quiet around Foxborough. The only mention I’ve seen of them is Jason La Canfora of NFL Network saying that the Patriots, along with the Eagles, had offers in to Julius Peppers, who is visiting the Bears today, and seems a good bet to sign there.

The Celtics picked up veteran swingman Michael Finley, and the Red Sox continue their spring training grind.

Bruins win ugly over Maple Leafs  – Joe Haggerty has the game story and talking points on the Bruins 3-2 shootout win over the Maple Leafs.

Tim Thomas turns back clock – Matt Kalman has the Bruins goaltender looking more like the player who won the Vezina trophy last season.

Don Cherry Still Cheering for the Bruins After All These Years – James Murphy has the Hockey Night in Canada icon saying that he still roots for the team he used to coach.

The cap comes off – and a chill is felt – Albert Breer looks at changing times in the NFL.

Pats’ approach on Mankins feels like risky business – Jonathan Comey has a look at how the Patriots are dealing with one of the best first round selections of the Bill Belichick era.

Kalish shows animal instincts on the diamond – Alex Speier has a look at Red Sox outfield prospect Ryan Kalish, who has drawn attention for his aggressive style of play at spring training.

Being Like Mike: Cameron recalls Jordan’s influence – Speier also talks to Mike Cameron about being a minor league teammate of Michael Jordan.

Golden oldies seek relief on Red Sox – Ron Borges looks at a few of the, ahem experienced, pitchers looking for a spot on the Red Sox staff.

Beckett’s work ethic wins teammates’ praise – Daniel Barbarisi’s notebook covers the bases nicely from Red Sox spring training.

Finley a low-risk, possibly high-impact pickup for C’s – Paul Flannery explains why Michael Finley might be more like P.J. Brown than you think.

Also check out Chris Warner’s Q&A With NIU DE James Ruffin over on Patriots Daily.

Week Log: Winter Cedes To Spring

There’s something about the two-year period between Olympic games. It sneaks up on me, I get excited for the events, then I never watch enough of them and they’re gone. Suddenly, two years feels like a long time when it lies ahead until the next games.

Well, today we’ll start with one final look back at the games of the XXI Winter Olympics because – well, two years is a long time.

Olympics

The action closed out on Sunday with the U.S. taking 37 total medals to lead all nations for the first time in 78 years. The games left We’re Just Saying with much to feel patriotic about, as America earned medals in both traditional and X Game-type events. Postcards From Vancouver found a lot of emerging patriotism in Canadians too, not to mention an abundance of politeness. Time’s World agrees they were the perfect hosts, but if public intoxication were an Olympic event Vancouver would take the gold. On Olympics Blog, Connecticut luger Megan Sweeney didn’t want to part Vancouver, nor part with her Ralph Lauren outfit.

Around The Oval has the highs and lows of speed skating, while Free Time reviews the incredible highs of freestyle skiing and snowboarding. Forget things skyward says And Another Thing . . ., because the 50K cross-country commands Bob Ryan’s greatest respect.

And ESPN’s Vancouver 2010 looks to Sochi, where 2014’s Team USA will have a hard time surpassing the accomplishments of Vancouver.

Olympic Hockey

This one aspect of the XXI Winter Olympics was so riveting that it needs a section unto itself. Fourth Place Medal captures all the superlatives of the fortnight, including Mittkini Girl getting the nod as Best Fan Of The Games.

On Sports Central, I admit to an indifference toward ice hockey 30 years ago but now see it today as one of many sources of national pride. The Sporting Blog says the gold medal game was one of those occasions where sports has the power to sear memories into history. NESN’s Olympics blog has the U.S. loss setting President Obama back a case of Yuengling. Olympic Hockey Blog fell in love with Ryan Miller’s play, not to mention his big, brown puppy-dog eyes.

Bingo Bar Blog‘s love of watching hockey has been reawakened after the Olympics to the point where they’re going to give the NHL another chance. Jerry Thornton had fun fooling around with hockey in her foxy Olympic days, then awoke this week to the tired and unsightful hag that is the NHL. I’m Just Sayin . . . understands Commissioner Gary Bettman’s public fence-sitting on the impact of the Olympics on the NHL, but says he should be more concerned about securing a legitimate network that will broadcast his games.

Bruins

Boston Sports Then And Now has many B’s returning from the Olympic break disappointed with their homelands’ performances but needing to get in focus quick, as there’s no room for further error. Enough with the somehows says Kathryn Tappen, who wants answers and in a hurry.

Don’t look the way of outsourced help for those answers, as Joe Haggerty has GM Peter Chiarelli’s conservatism like shackles binding him as yesterday’s trade deadline passed. The B’s did land defenseman Dennis Seidenberg and, although the ESPN Boston Bruins jury is still out on the question of value to the B’s, they ruled it a good move for Seidenberg. Bruins Blog brings the inside scoop on Derek Morris waiving his no movement clause, a move that led to his return to Phoenix. With Seidenberg, a left shot, coming and Morris, a right shot, going, Rink Rap figured another shoe would drop. It never did. Bruins 2010 Draft Watch hates Chiarelli’s moves and wants him out of the way if he’s not going to lead. Hockey Independent says the acquisition of rights to Steve Kampfer is nothing in the now and only compounds fans’ ire with Chiarelli.

Boston Sports Blog thinks the only way to cure the hiccup that is Boston’s depressing season is for fans to start wearing bags over their heads.

Celtics

After a disaster of epic proportions against the NJ Nets last weekend, it was back-to-back wins for the C’s in mid-week. North Station Sports suggests that beauty could be found in the 105-100 win in Detroit . . . if you switched off your lights. Maybe your TV, too. Last night was more like what Green Street was looking for, as the C’s won both at home and on the back half of consecutive night games, crushing the Bobcats, 104-80. ESPN Boston Celtics Blog thinks that Gino may have been just what the C’s needed to dance off some inconsistent play of late. CelticsBlog has Nate Robinson joining Gino as fan favorites after each sparked the crowd last night.

Hardwood Houdini says it’s about time Doc Rivers takes some of the blame for the C’s lack of focus and chemistry. Celtics Stuff Live questions Doc on his use of Sheed to close games. And it’s a Baby step forward and a giant one back for Glen Davis, as Red’s Army says nothing is going his way this year.

Red Sox

Yesterday was the first day of actual competition down in Florida, if you call 15-0 and 6-1 wins over college kids competition. Sawxblog is happy to have his old friend Baseball back. Against Northeastern, Adam Hirshfield has Casey Kelly making a decent pitching debut . . . for a shortstop. Against Boston College, it was a rite of spring as Sean McAdam has BP pitcher Ino Guerrero getting in his annual ABs.

Utility Lou is worried about Jonathan Papelbon’s inability to put another pitch in the back of hitters’ minds last year. Peter’s Red Sox Forever‘s mind is on what goes on down under Sox players’ belts.

With the Chilean earthquake shortening our days by something in the order of milliseconds, Masshole Sports wonders if there’s enough time for the Sox to win another World Series. The days are too short for Toeing The Rubber to ever forgive Johnny Damon – pinstripes or not. It looks like the Yankees will lose one Damon and gain another, as Soxy Lady has Matt and buddy Ben Affleck turning to the Evil side. The Mighty Quinn Media Machine eulogizes the career of Rhode Island’s Rocco Baldelli.

Thanks to all you Olympics bloggers who gave us a little extra color and variety over these past three weeks – not that we needed it! I’ve got your cards, and we’ll see you again in the summer of 2012. As for the rest of you, we’ll see you next Thursday.