On Feb. 4, ESPN PR guy Mac Nwulu Tweeted: “ESPN Stu Scott, fitness buff, arrived Miami for SB XLIV after 1wk MMA training under FOX Sport’s Jay Glazer. No plans to fight pro!!”
Pro or no pro, Stuart Scott and Jay Glazer in the Octagon? Is there a sports fan alive who wouldn’t fork over 49.99 to see that? (Dude, I can dream, can’t I?)
To indulge my curiousity, I called Glazer and Scott today to get the downlow, and it turns out Nwulu’s Tweet was indeed true. Glazer, who trains NFL players with MMA legend Randy Couture during the NFL offseason, told me today that he recently trained Scott for a day in Ft. Lauderdale.
As it’s such a valuable resource, I’m spending more and more time on Twitter. Tweeting has been a revelation for many athletes and media members in connecting with fans and sharing information in real time. A much more immediate vehicle that Facebook.
While there’s a lot of new and old media members who have enthusiastically bought into the medium, there are many who curiously have not. Here’s a list of people who I would like to see Tweeting regularly. For all I know, many of those listed have Twitter accounts that aren’t public or have accounts that are essentially idle. Or perhaps I’m actually missing someone. If I am, leave in the comments.
1a) Todd McShay: I’ve got ESPN muted most days, but the sound goes on when McShay appears. He’s one of the few media personalities who consistently tells you something you don’t already know. Mad homework and we’re the beneficiaries. From the way he funs people on-air, he’d light it up on Twitter.
1b) Doug Gottlieb*: Another homework guy who always has college hoops nuggets you get nowhere else. Since I rarely watch college hoops, great catch-up guy to watch. General sports talk host on ESPN Radio and consistently says stuff I can’t believe corporate lets him get away with. Probably the loosest cannon in Bristol. Anyone who drops a “game blouses” while doing a game is automatically on the list.
1c) Brian Kenny: Solid when anchoring but radio show allows him to bring the knowledge you can’t get from the prompter. Best interviewer currently on radio. Asks a pointed question and gets out of the way. (Doesn’t answer question he’s asking!) Voice of reason in the insanity of the boxing world. If I’m driving back from Vegas, he’s the podcast.
4) Matt Vasgersian: I know him well from my baseball broadcasting days. Killer natural sense of humor that gets dumbed-down by MLB Network. He could let that out on Twitter. He’s much more than just a sports guy, but the only place most people know him is when he’s hemmed in by a sports broadcast. He needs to eventually do something professionally that isn’t sports. Funny dude.
5) Jared Allen: Only athlete on the list. Best video pieces from an athlete I’ve ever seen. Has both over-the-top and subtle sense of humor. Doesn’t have a big ego or have every move that he makes mapped by a marketer. (Ochocinco, LeBron, etc.)
It’s one of broadcasting’s great truths: Sooner or later, if you’re on the air long enough, you will have your Howard Cosell moment. Cosell, of course, had his a career’s worth of work nearly obliterated by one unfortunate phrase during a 1983 Monday Night Football game, when he blurted during an Alvin Garrett scamper, “Look at that little monkey run!” Fans of the Redskins’ wide receiver, who is black, were not amused.
What Al Michaels’ faux paux during Sunday night’s game between the Vikings and Cardinals lacked in racial undertones it gained in hilarity, as at one point he noted of the Vikings’ Jared Allen (who wears No. 69): “Sooner or later, 69 will be in your face.” Indeed. Get that audio to Canton, pronto. And the porn hall of fame, is there is such a thing.
C.J. narration: “(I’m) at the Mall of America with Jared Allen, a walking entertainment industry whether he’s shooting video for his colorful FSN segment or chewing me out for shooting video of his girlfriend who doesn’t like being photographed.” Read more…
After Minnesota escaped with a 33-31 win over Baltimore yesterday, Ravens rookie Tackle Michael Oher said this to the BALTIMORE SUN about his opposite in the game, maniacal Vikings Defensive End Jared Allen: “There is nothing really special about him … I think he found out I’m an OK player. Guy makes like $100 million. I think I did all right.”
For the game against Oher, Allen registered a sack and six tackles, but the Ravens rung up 448 total yards, including 385 by quarterback Joe Flacco, on 28-43 passing. So I suppose Oher’s reaction was somewhat understandable - especially considering all the pass attempts by the Ravens.
Interestingly enough though, on Jay Glazer’s After Party @ Foxsports.com this morning, Allen’s own view wasn’t too congruent with my well-measured assessment.
That brings us to today, and I’ve got yet another wrinkle to Glazer’s reportage on #4.
Earlier this week, I was listening to one of my favorite shows on radio, hosted by Petros Papadakis and Matt “Money” Smith on Fox Sports Radio here in L.A.. Like all other sports radio hosts this week, the duo was burdened with once again having to pick at the rotting Favre-to-the-Upper-Midwest carcass. But during their analysis, Papadakis steered the topic off the well-worn road and presented a more intriguing question: Who was the Vikings’ lockerroom snitch who sold out Favre’s sign to Glazer? Read more…
Let’s be honest with ourselves: the Penguins are done. Sure, technically all Detroit did on Sunday night was hold home ice advantage with their 3-1 win over Pittsburgh in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals, the same score as Game 1. But their 2-0 lead pretty much feels insurmountable - does anyone feel like the Penguins can take four of the next five games against the Red Wings? Didn’t think so.
Especially since the Red Wings and their old, tired legs, were able to outhustle, outskate and just plain outplay the Penguins 24 hours after Game 1, a made-for-TV contrivance that was supposed to be their downfall. Pittsburgh’s Big Two of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin have combined for one goal in the first two games, half as many as Detroit’s Justin Abdelkader, who was playing minor-league hockey in May. And both of his goals have been beauties, including his singlehanded effort last night:
The bottom line for Pittsburgh is simple: when their main goal scorers are being held in check, and their goaltending is soft, they are going to lose. It doesn’t matter how much revenge they want, or if Evgeni Malkin tries to start fights to fire the team up - Detroit is just the better team (and doing this without Pavel Datsyuk, mind you).
Speaking of Malkin’s fisticuffs: despite picking up an instigator penalty at the end of Game 2, which should be an automatic one-game suspension, the NHL has decided that Malkin will be on the ice when the serious returns to Pittsburgh. Think the league wants to avoid a sweep?
With the win, Texas advances to the Super Regional, where they will play TCU in a Best-of-Three series that will likely come down to the final pitch of Game Three. Seriously, guys, it’s OK just to win a 5-1 snoozer every once in a while. (Or if you are Florida State, a 37-6 snoozer.)
Finally, congratulations for Jamie Moyer for getting his 250th career win yesterday, a 4-2 Phillies win over the Nationals. (And really, shouldn’t that could as half a win?) The achievements of the 46-year-old goes to show that not being able to throw hard enough to break glass isn’t a prerequisite to being successful. And it also shows that if you are a lefty with a durable arm, even a 4.23 career ERA can’t keep you from reaching some big milestones.
I’m making a list of pitchers who don’t want to go to the Chicago White Sox, and apparently every No. 1 is on the list. First it was Jake Peavy of the Padres rejecting a deal, and now the HOUSTON CHRONICLE is saying that Roy Oswalt of the Astros will exercise his veto rights to nix any deal. But I’m sure Barry Zito is still available.
How not to win your first PGA Tour tournament: miss putts inside 10 feet on the final hole of regulation and the first hole of a playoff, and then have your approach on the second playoff hole ricochet off the pin and roll back more than 20 feet from the hole. Steve Stricker was the beneficiary of Tim Clark’s bad luck/meltdown, picking up the Crowne Plaza Invitational.
The Orlando Magic thought they had lost All-Star point guard Jameer Nelson to injury for the season back in February, but now the ORLANDO SENTINEL is saying that the rehab for his shoulder injury is “dramatically” ahead of schedule and he might be available for the NBA Finals.
Arkansas DT Lavunce Askew was arrested on Saturday after allegedly stealing a laptop from an apartment. His teammate Matt Marshall also stole an iPod Touch, but was not charged after he returned it to the doorstep and helped police track down Askew. See, Marshall might be a thief and a stool pigeon, but his heart is in the right place.
World champion hurdler Jana Rawlinson was forced to confirm an embarrassing, poorly-kept secret circulating around the track world for months. Not that she’s using PEDs, but that she had breast augmentation. You would think if there’s one sport where being busty is a disadvantage, it’s hurdling. Check out some Russ Meyer-approved before and after action: