Doc Rivers Charity Auction On eBay Now

doc_riversCeltics Coach Doc Rivers is partnering with leading destination club Ultimate Escapes to raise money for Shepherd’s Hope, a non-profit organization of volunteers that provides access to health care for the uninsured. Through Ultimate Escapes signature ‘Ultimate GivingSM’ program, individuals will have the chance to bid, via a series of eBay auctions, on six extraordinary packages including a VIP Golf Experience with the world champion coach in Orlando and a VIP Celtics package during the 09/10 season.

The first auction, June 25 – July 4, 2009, includes three offerings that grant the winners access to the exclusive collection of luxury homes usually reserved for members of the club: a VIP Golf Experience with Doc Rivers in Orlando, a five-night stay in a London home, and a five-night stay in a private residence in Turks & Caicos. As part of the Ultimate Giving initiative, all proceeds from the auction will be donated to the charity of Doc Rivers’ choice, Shepherd’s Hope. The auctions and details about each offering are available at www.UltimateGiving.com. Ultimate Giving has already raised more than $350,000 for non-profits, with a multi-year goal of collecting over $1 million for deserving causes.

The Doc Rivers VIP Golf Package Includes:

  • A golf foursome (the winner and two friends, plus a celebrity) at the Doc Rivers Celebrity Golf Invitational on July 17, 2009 at Grand Cypress
  • Meet & Greet with Doc Rivers during the private celebrity pairings party July 16, 2009
  • Photo opportunity for the winner and guests with Doc and other celebrities
  • Autographed Doc Rivers memorabilia
  • Two-night stay in Ultimate Escapes Luxury Destination Clubs’ $2 million Orlando home
  • Golf Tournament Awards Luncheon for three

 VIP Package Retail Value: $5,000

This package is currently available for bidding on eBay.

Additionally, a second auction taking place July 2–July 12, 2009 will offer three additional packages, including the following one: 

Celtics VIP Package

  • Two night stay in Ultimate Escapes Luxury Ultimate Collection 5 star hotel partner – The Eliot Suite in Boston
  • Four tickets to a Boston Celtics home game during the 2010 season
  • Meet & greet with Doc Rivers just after the game.
  • Autographed Doc Rivers memorabilia

Check the Ultimate Giving page for the rest of the Auctions as they come on-line.

SoSH Raising Money for ALS Research

The Sons of Sam Horn messageboard is more than just a discussion group of all things Red Sox. The folks over there (and there is a lot of cross-pollination between BSMW and SoSH) have always used their community to raise money for worthy charities, such as The Jimmy Fund.

For the second straight year, SoSH will run an auction to benefit the Massachusetts Chapter of the ALS Association, and will partner with Curt’s Pitch for ALS during the event, which will take place from July 6-19. Details below:

SONS OF SAM HORN HOLDING ANNUAL

AUCTION TO BENEFIT ALS RESEARCH AND CARE

Last year, popular Red Sox message board raised over $63,000

for the Massachusetts Chapter of the ALS Association

Boston, Mass. (June 24, 2009)—The web site that made its reputation on dissecting Jimy Williams’ lineups, analyzing Nomar Garciaparra’s penchant for hacking away at the first pitch, and analyzing the latest moves by general manager Theo Epstein is going to bat against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The Sons of Sam Horn (SoSH), a popular message board dedicated to the discussion of the Boston Red Sox, will hold its annual online auction July 6-19. All proceeds will benefit the Massachusetts Chapter of the ALS Association.

SoSH will partner with Curt’s Pitch for ALS during the event. Founded in 1993 by former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling, the organization is committed to ALS patient care and the search for a cure.

“I am proud to join with the members of the Sons of Sam Horn in their efforts to raise money for ALS patients and their families,” Schilling said. “The goal of Curt’s Pitch has always been to help improve the quality of life for those living with the disease and their loved ones, and fundraisers like the on-line auction run by SoSH go a long way toward helping meet that goal. I sincerely hope you will join us and participate in this year’s auction.”

Last year, SoSH’s online auction raised over $63,000 for the Massachusetts Chapter of the ALS Association. Winning items included a Red Sox clubhouse tour with Curt Schilling, a week’s use of a beach house on Cape Cod, original artwork, and a visit to the set of the NBC television hit “The Office.” Auctioned items and services are mostly donated by SoSH members, but anyone can donate an item, and bidding in the auction is open to everyone. This year’s auction items can be found at www.sonsofsamhorn.net.

Since 2003, SoSH has also held an annual pledge drive that benefited the Jimmy Fund. The drive has raised close to $250,000, with a high of nearly $75,000 in 2007. Over the years, SoSH has received donations from a variety of organizations and businesses, including the Boston Red Sox, Rotoworld, the Ryan Center, NBC Sports, Kittery Trading Post, The Red Seat, Sports Propaganda Print, and Limo’s by Liz.

For more information, visit www.sonsofsamhorn.com/index.php/sosh-auction-for-curts-pitch-for-als.

I would like to encourage all to consider participating in this event.

Moss, Samuel Updates

It’s a busy day for the Patriots blogs today, with multiple updates being published throughout the morning.

John Tomase explores why a new deal for Randy Moss has not been announced as of yet.

Here is his third possible reason for no deal:

3. The sides are merely negotiating. Technically, they weren’t allowed to talk about a new deal until this morning, so maybe this is just taking some time. We shall see.

Tomase is incorrect here. The Patriots and Moss could do all the talking and negotiating they wanted to do prior to today. They just couldn’t sign a new deal until the new league year began. He was their player, so they certainly had the right to talk to him about contractual matters, but they couldn’t sign anything until today.

Whether they get a new deal done or not remains to be seen, but they had the ability to talk to him all along. So have speculated that the Patriots haven’t announced the deal because they don’t want people to accuse them of “cheating” again for working on a new deal prior to today. That theory doesn’t hold water either. There was nothing to prevent the Patriots and Moss from working on a new deal, and even drawing up all the papers to have ready to sign at 12:01am today if that is what they wanted to do.

Speaking of Tomase, Patsfans.com isn’t pleased with him, and they’ve removed the Herald headlines from their website in protest.

It sure looks like Asante Samuel is headed to Philadelphia, but I thought he wanted a $100 million dollar deal…

Meanwhile, Donte’ Stallworth is going to visit with the Cleveland Browns.

Belichick, Pioli, Break Silence on Spygate

Mike Reiss has the big scoop tonight, with Bill Belichick and Scott Pioli each breaking their silence on the whole Spygate scandal, and strongly denying that any opponent walk-throughs were ever taped.

Pioli also says that Matt Walsh was fired from the club because he was caught secretly tape-recording conversations, something that Walsh’s lawyer denies.

Steroid Hearings Updates

There’s plenty of live coverage of this morning’s hearings by the Committee on Steroids and Baseball taking place today.

You can watch it live on ESPN, NESN and CSN and other channels as well. Online, CSpan is streaming the hearings, though the stream is choppy at times.

Both the Herald’s Clubhouse Insider and Globe’s Extra Bases blogs are providing constant updates on the hearings.

You can also check the Washington Post baseball blog which is covering the hearings.

Clemens claims in his opening statement that he was raised never to take shortcuts, treated Brian McNamee as family – like he does everyone he meets and that if he is guilty of anything, it is “only of being too trusting.”

He ended by saying “Let me be clear – I have never taken steroids or HGH.”

McNamee opened his statement by saying he injected Clemens multiple times with steroids and HGH.

Schilling Can’t Go

It looks like a lot of the work on the site move will get started this afternoon, so it’s possible the site could be down later today. When we take the site off of this server and move it to the new one, it’s going to involve a DNS change, which can take 24-48 hours to propagate, and that’s when the site will be unavailable to most.I’ll try to keep you posted.With the uncertainty of the site availability here, I’ve posted on Patriots Daily a column entitled The Most Miserable 18-1 Season in History, which believe it or not, has nothing to do with the Super Bowl.

Yay, a Red Sox controversy to take our mind off football! The first one of many sure to come along this season. Curt Schilling has a sore shoulder. There was all sorts of speculation yesterday about the team trying to void his contact and whether he was going to have surgery or not. Gordon Edes and Rob Bradford report that even though Schilling isn’t going to undergo surgery, he will be out for a long time, and his pitching future is in doubt. Joe McDonald and Sean McAdam report that this injury could end Schilling’s career.

Nick Cafardo and Michael Silverman examine how this injury will impact the Red Sox rotation.Bradford has a feature on the Red Sox players who are working out at Athletes’ Performance in Tempe, Arizona. He also runs through a day in the life at the center.

Peter May has a feature on Kevin Garnett’s return to Minnesota tonight, even though the Celtics superstar is not expected to play. Steve Bulpett talks to Kevin McHale about the Garnett trade, and the ‘Wolves GM has no regrets about it. Mark Murphy has a look at Tony Allen starting to get his legs under him again.

Nancy Marrapese-Burrell has Comcast SportsNet bringing their Celtics coverage to a new level.

Fluto Shinzawa and Jeff Horrigan have Glen Murray hoping to get back in the Bruins lineup tonight in Buffalo. Shinzawa’s notebook has Alex Auld hoping to another chance in net soon.

Pat Bigold has Asante Samuel wishing to stay with the Patriots, but saying that “it’s gonna take a lot” to keep him here. Bigold also has Mike Vrabel defending Bill Belichick leaving the field with a second left on the clock. Douglas Flynn has hard look back at the Super Bowl. Robert Lee says that the Patriots will need to aggressively rebuild their defense for next season.

Fortnight From Hell

(Thoughts on this season that wasn’t from guest blogger Bob Ekstrom. Reach him at [email protected])

I have to give it to Bruce for being our first responder, trying to restore order to the chaos and carnage of last Sunday. Now it’s up to the rest of us to dig out of our personal rubble. For me, it was a hellish fortnight that began when I realized the road-warrior Giants were the designated visiting team in Super Bowl XLII, this being an even-numbered year. Then, Johan Santana signed with the Mets eight weeks after the Twins asked for Jon Lester’s medical records, a leading indicator that a trade for the Coco Crisp package was imminent. Days before the Super Bowl, the Lakers acquired Pau Gasol, thereby providing Kobe Bryant with newfound passion and earning him comparisons to our beloved Tom Brady. I never want to see those two names in the same sentence again, but it does seem plausible that Phil Jackson will break the tie with Red Auerbach yet. To kick it all, my son decided to paint his new room in Patriots blues, reds, and grays, courtesy of Lowe’s. It seemed we were tempting fate by immortalizing a perfect season upon his walls before perfection was achieved.

At about 6:30 Sunday night, the Patriots lost the coin flip and didn’t see the ball until his bedtime. Then, all hell broke loose.

Since Sunday night, I’ve searched for my therapy in front of the radio, rather than turning to websites or newsprint. Airwaves carry the voice of the real fan, and some were bound to express my sentiments. But now, I no longer want to hear that the Giants outplayed the Patriots. I saw that for myself. It doesn’t help me get over the fact that the Patriots should not have been outplayed, that the better team did not win. It may be sour grapes, but I’m a fan before a writer. Vic Carucci feels my pain, even as Logan Mankins says there are more important things than football. Are you kidding? Christopher L. Gaspar has Coach Belichick not dwelling on this one, either. Hey, I need these guys to be in the dumps until I’ve gotten up. Mike Vrabel and Dan Koppen understand that.

I also don’t need more complaints about the FG that was never attempted, or an O-line that provided as much resistance against the Giants’ rush as those turnstiles at the T do to the commuter rush. The bottom line is that our team got the footing for victory with 2:42 remaining, then ceded it. The end came 1:27 later, when a potential fourth-and-fifteen morphed into a first down with the Eli-to-Tyree catch, now preserved in Super Bowl lore as The Escape. 18 games, 58 minutes, and 45 seconds of perfection fell by the wayside when Rodney Harrison could not make that football do the same.

Karen Guregian puts Sunday’s loss in its quantitative perspective, but she also goes one better in addressing the emotional damage it could inflict on New England’s future. I’m down, but not that down. As one Giants fan pointed out in a call to WEEI this week, it took a super-human effort and all the bounces to set this team back. Already looking forward, Mike Reiss suggests that Randy Moss could be franchised, making the offense seemingly as potent next year. And, as they did after a fourth quarter defensive meltdown last year, Belichick and Scott Pioli should have one marquee defensive acquisition up their sleeves this year. Unfortunately, it might not involve keeping Asante Samuel.

Like my fellow Pats’ fans, I’m still alive, and if this one didn’t kill us, maybe it will make us stronger. For the time being, I’m still not ready to go into my son’s blue, red, and gray room quite yet.

A New Beginning

Sometime over the next week or so, BSMW will be offline for while. We’re moving to a bigger and better server, and also getting a re-design. The current front page has been here since 2004, making it pretty ancient in terms of design.

The new look is quite different, so I’m warning you now, though there will be many familiar aspects remaining, plus some new features.

During the time that Bostonsportsmedia.com is offline, the message board will still be up and running, as it is hosted on a different server and on a different domain. My email will also remain up and running, so you can continue to contact me as normal.

Patriots Daily will still be running, (and will be a good place to check for status updates) but Scott’s Shots and the BSMW Full Court Press will be down while BSMW is down, and possibly longer as there will be more configuration needed for those sub-sites. The Links sites will all remain up and running.

I’ll try to keep you posted as I get more information about the timing of the changes.

The Celtics held off the Los Angeles Clippers at the Garden last night to maintain their perfect record against the Western conference. Check the stories at CelticsLinks.com

The Bruins next play tomorrow night in a rematch with the Sabres. Check Bruinslinks.com for more.

Things seem to be getting back to football matters finally, as John Tomase and Mike Reiss look at some offseason decisions facing the Patriots.

Even down in Philly they’re not taking kindly to Senator Arlen Specter’s antics regarding the NFL and Spygate. Will Bunch says that the situation is even worse than it appears on the surface.

Spring Training actually starts next week, a stark reminder that the baseball season is soon upon us. We’ve still got spots open on the BSMW Travel Club trip out to California with the Sox as they take on the A’s in the Oakland home opener. It’s a great chance to get an early start on spring. We’d like to get the trip wrapped up by the end of next week, (the 15th) so if you’re thinking of going, please contact us using either the booking form or you can email [email protected]. You can also call Sun Valley Travel directly, just mention you’re interested in the BSMW package.

CSN Goes HD Full-Time, HBO Drops INFL

Comcast SportsNet, the home of the Boston Celtics on TV, announced today that the network will have a new full-time HD channel on Comcast systems.

Depending on your location, if you are a Comcast HD subscriber, you should see the new channel at 852 or 779.

This means now that all Celtics road games will be telecast in high definition, starting with Friday night’s game against the Timberwolves. CSN notes that they are also “working with all cable operators to make HD road game telecasts available to all consumers.”

In addition, there will now be Celtics On Demand, featuring live game replays (posted for 24 hours) and original Celtics content, available to all Comcast subscribers.

Comcast SportsNet will telecast 34 remaining home and away Celtics games in HD along with Celtics Pre-Game Live, Celtics Post-Game Live, Celtics Now and Mohegan Sun Sports Tonight as well as other programming. To celebrate the launch of Celtics’ away games in HD, Comcast SportsNet is sponsoring a fan appreciation night tonight when the Celtics host the Los Angeles Clippers at TD Banknorth Garden and giving away certificates for two HDTVs at the game.

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After 31 years on the air, HBO has pulled the plug on the venerable Inside the NFL series.

HBO Sports President Ross Greenburg, who joined the network’s sports division one year after the debut of INFL, announced today that the season finale of Inside the NFL, which is set for tonight and will recap the New York Giants Super Bowl victory, will mark the final edition of the program on HBO.

Inside the NFL has been a hallmark program for three decades on HBO,” said Greenburg. “It has been a terrific franchise. But the television landscape has changed quite a bit over the last 30 years and we have to recognize the realities of the business. I’m not sure we had more than one competitor when the show launched in 1977.

“We wish NFL FILMS, our partner for the past 31 years, all the best with continuing the great tradition of Inside the NFL.”

While no further details were released, you’ve got to wonder if the NFL Films rights got to be prohibitively expensive for HBO, and if NFL Network has plans for creating a similar program using those highlight packages.

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Per the Globe today, a funeral Mass for Keith Ryan will be said at 11:30 a.m. Saturday in St. Paul Church in Hingham.

Calling hours will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday in Downing Cottage Funeral Chapel in Hingham.

The note also states that the family is awaiting further tests regarding the death of Ryan.

B’s, C’s Fall

Both the Bruins and Celtics were in action last night and both fell short in the end.

First, the Bruins dropped a 4-2 decision to the Buffalo Sabres at TD Banknorth Garden. Stephen Harris says that the Bruins played fairly well, but the Sabres played with desperation. Fluto Shinzawa has the Sabres making a statement with their play last night.

Rich Thompson notes that a couple of “gray area” goals did in Tim Thomas last night.

Harris’ notebook has the Bruins looking into a new concussion treatment plan for Andrew Alberts and Patrice Bergeron. Shinzawa’s notebook has a look at a rough night for Dennis Wideman.

Celtics

Out in Cleveland, playing without Kevin Garnett once again, the Celtics defense took the night, losing 114-113 to LeBron James and Cavs. Peter May is pretty harsh on the Celtics after this one, probably because he hasn’t had a whole lot to complain about thus far this season. Steve Bulpett has the Celtics hard on themselves for their performance on the defensive end.

May’s notebook has Ray Allen open to the idea of going to the All Star game as an injury replacement. Bulpet’s notebook has Paul Pierce and LeBron James taking different approaches to the fourth quarter of games now.

Patriots

On Patriots Daily, Dan Snapp wonders if he might have to give up his Patriots merit badges.

Yeah, we’ll do some Patriots links today. Limited. Nothing from the Herald. I didn’t see anything of value in there anyway, at least from browsing the headlines. And we certainly won’t be looking over Dan Shaughnessy’s picked up pieces from the Super Bowl. You guys are all on your own for those links.

Christopher L. Gasper has Bill Belichick already moving on to the 2008 season. Joe McDonald also has Belichick taking a forward-looking approach to things. Glen Farley has more from Belichick on moving on. Jeff Howe also has Belichick looking ahead, rather than behind.

Shalise Manza Young can’t quite figure out the Man of mystery that is Bill Belichick. Tania deLuzuriaga and Laurel J. Sweet report on Willie Andrews getting busted for pot possession yesterday in Lowell. Gasper’s notebook has Belichick explaining his walk off the field with a second left on Sunday.

Gordon Edes and Amalie Benjamin report on the Red Sox re-signing Bobby Kielty yesterday, a move that would seem to indicate that the Sox are still planning on trading Coco Crisp.