Merry Christmas to all . . .
Phil Mushnick of the New York Post reports that during an NBA game last week, "an ESPN graphic noted the Lakers were 1-11 this season when Kobe Bryant scores 30 or more." Post reader Ron Goydic asks: "Why then don't they take him out when he reaches 29?" . . . Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle: "Pete Rose and his ex-Playmate wife will star in a new TV program. Since it's a reality show, will Pete's hair be invited?" . . . Perhaps we shouldn't be surprised that rapper Eminem has summed up the NHL situation as well as anyone. "Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to say," he is quoted as opining, "but nothin' comes out when they move they lips. Just a buncha gibberish." . . .
If you are looking for a Christmas gift for a reader who is a disillusioned NHL fan, you can't go wrong with Roy MacGregor's Wayne Gretzky's Ghost. It's a compilation of pieces by Canada's best hockey essayist and it is excellent. . . . In fact, you really can't go wrong with any of MacGregor's writing. . . . The best player on the Los Angeles Angels, outfielder Mike Trout, will earn US$900,000 in 2013. Vernon Wells, another Angel in the outfield who will spend most of his season on the bench and pinch-hitting, is scheduled to pocket $24.5 million. . . .
Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times poses a question: "Fiscal Cliff is: a) The economic game of chicken being played between Republicans and Democrats; b) The dude in accounting the Mariners blame whenever they don't sign a big-bucks free agent." . . . One more from Perry: "The Chicago Bulls' Joakim Noah is 0-for-5 from three-point range in his six NBA seasons. Which is probably why the line isn't known as Noah's arc." . . .
Hey, Blue Jays fans, what happens if R.A. Dickey's knuckleball doesn't knuckle in the Canadian air? Hey, just askin'. . . . After the New York Mets dealt Dickey to Toronto, Reggie Hayes of the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel pointed out: "With Dickey gone, only one knuckleballer remains in New York: Tim Tebow." . . . Headline at TheOnion.com: Tim Tebow Puts Empty Gatorade Cups In Wildcat Formation On Jets Bench. . . . "It's the 50th anniversary of the Rolling Stones," notes R.J. Currie of SportsDeke.com, "and the last regular season the Toronto Maple Leafs finished first overall. The difference? Since then the Stones have gotten lots of satisfaction, while Leafs fans have gone way past their 19th nervous breakdown." . . .
If you missed it, TSN polled 25 "hockey experts" and put together a list of the top 40 Canadian players in the history of the World Junior Championship. It released the list on Wednesday, and it is headed up by, in order, Jordan Eberle, Eric Lindros, Wayne Gretzky, Jason Allison and Manny Legace. Two of your Kamloops Blazers made the cut - Jarome Iginla is 18th and Dave Chyzowski 37th. . . . I was one of the 25 people who took part and I can tell you this was one of the toughest exercises in which I have participated. . . . Earlier this week, Winnipeg Jets forward Evander Kane tweeted a photo of himself holding gobs of cash while pretending to make a phone call to boxer Floyd Mayweather. Many people weren't impressed but, as Richmond blogger TC Chong wrote, "Both the NHL and the NHLPA immediately called him and demanded 57 per cent of it.'' . . .
A student at a school in Texas showed up for class the other day with the likeness of Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel shaved into his hair. The kid was promptly sent home. That prompted this from Brad Dickson of the Omaha World-Herald: "Where do kids find barbers capable of cutting these images of athletes? I'm lucky if my sideburns are even." . . . Manziel, the Texas A&M star freshman, has been nicknamed Johnny Football. So there was this headline at SportsPickle.com: Johnny Football remarkably the first from the famous Football family to win the Heisman. . . .
You likely are aware that U.S. Olympic middle-distance runner Suzy Favor Hamilton had her secret life exposed this week - she has been working as a high-priced escort in Las Vegas - after which she took to Twitter with an explanation. "It also tripled her number of followers on Twitter." writes Len Berman of ThatsSports.com. "That's the way things work in the news world." . . . Defenceman Micki DuPont and goaltender Devan Dubnyk, both of whom played for your Kamloops Blazers, will play for Canada at the Spengler Cup. The tournament opens Wednesday in Davos, Switzerland. DuPont plays for Kloten, in Switzerland's top league, while Dubnyk (Edmonton Oilers) is a victim of the NHL lockout. . . .
The AHL's Binghamton Senators are scheduled to play host to the Rochester Americans tonight. In a promotion with something of a twist, the Senators announced Monday that if the world was to end Friday, fans would be given their money back. . . . As Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post writes, "No one can tell the Sens to Mayan their own business." . . . When Mike MacIntyre was introduced as head coach of the Colorado Buffaloes football team, he had his wife with him at the news conference. She obviously plays an important role because, as he pointed out to those in attendance, "Looking at her, you can definitely tell I can recruit." . . . "Yeah," tweets Mark Whicker of the Orange County Register, "you'd figure Miss Universe would have to come from Venus every few years or so."
. . . and to all a good night!
(Gregg Drinnan is sports editor of The Daily News. He is at firstname.lastname@example.org, gdrinnan.blogspot.com and twitter.com/gdrinnan. Keeping Score appears Saturdays, except when it doesn't.)