From what I can gather, WBZ radio was actually the first to report yesterday that Antoine Walker is going to miss some time -up to eight games- with a knee injury. Unless your name is Brandon Stahl, this is bad news for the Celtics. Walker, who was named NBA Eastern Conference player of the week yesterday, will be replaced in the lineup by Kedrick Brown. Eric Williams will move to power forward, and Brown will play the other forward spot. Shira Springer has the news and says don’t be surprised to see Antoine back sooner. Steve Bulpett also reports on the bittersweet Tuesday, and says Walker will not rush back this time. Carolyn Thornton reports on the story for the Projo. Bulpett’s notebook takes a good look at the difference that Bremer and Brown have made to the Celtics. Bulpett calls Brown “the team’s best and most impactful defender right now, just a year and a half out of junior college. Others may know the schemes better and have more savvy at certain points of the game, but no one else can lock up an opponent the way he can.” If you saw the job he did on Ray Allen Saturday night, and also noticed that in the last two minutes of the game, that O’Brien switched him over to the white-hot Sam Cassell, you get an idea of what Bulpett is talking about.
Gerry Callahan does a good job of summing up the Super Bowl matchup: “It is the Raiders vs. the Buccaneers in Super Bowl XXXVII, the classic showdown between the insufferable object vs. the detestable force. Unless you’re a member of the Glazer family or one of those sorry citizens of Raider Nation who hides his sexual inadequacies beneath a Darth Vader costume, you just can’t get excited about either team.” Kevin Mannix suddenly finds Warren Sapp to be a loveable, embraceable figure. Dan Shaughnessy writes about John Gruden. Jim Donaldson devotes a column to proclaiming that the Raiders are old. Letting us know in every possible way. One line puzzled me: “Their favorite television network is ESPN2, because they’re Old School.” I think he’s referring to ESPN Classic, but who knows what’s in Donaldson’s brain. Jeff Jacobs and George Kimball look at the perfect fit between Bill Romanowski and and Raiders. Nick Cafardo writes about Sapp and Keyshawn Johnson talking, talking and talking. Ron Borges writes about the long-suffering Tim Brown, finally getting a chance to play in the big game. Michael Felger says John Gruden has certainly proved to be worth the picks Tampa gave up for him. Felger also looks at Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski, who had an awkward moment during his media day interviews. The Bucs notebook by Mannix ponders if this defense can be considered among the best ever. Michael Smith and Nick Cafardo’s notebook looks at the supposed edge the Bucs might have with Gruden as their coach and notes that Terrance Shaw is enjoying this Super Bowl more than last year. Kimball’s Raiders notebook has for Buc Frank Middleton recalling his days practicing against Warren Sapp.
Nick Cafardo also has a brief mention on Romeo Crennell getting an interview with the 49ers for their head coaching vacancy. Michael Felger looks at two ex-Pats, Greg Spires and Terrance Shaw grousing about their time in New England and gloating about being in the Super Bowl.
Steve Buckley writes about the media buzzards circling around Robbie Ftorek, and that he doesn’t let them affect him. Wouldn’t it be cool to have buzzards circling around writers heads? “So-and-so hasn’t produced a good column in weeks, is the (insert paper name here) considering firing him? Is the pressure on to produce? Let’s ask his wife and kids if they’re worried about Dad losing his job. Tomorrow’s column could be the last for ol’ so-and-so.” Nancy Marrapese-Burrell reports on top-goalie-by-default Steve Shields. Steve Conroy says the team is remaining positive.
Gordon Edes gives the latest on the Kevin Millar situation, an official from the Japanese club is coming over to escort him over to Japan. The Globe has done a pretty good job this winter providing a Red Sox story nearly every day. John Tomase asserts that Theo Epstein’s offseason may be anything but the failure that many want to label it. Cosmo Macero Jr proposes a swap…Fenway and the land around it for land in South Boston to build a new stadium. He suggests turning the land Fenway is on to build housing units.
Bill Griffith looks at media members trading roles recently. Greg Dickerson sits in on Celtics broadcast, filling in for Tommy Heinsohn (doing a good job too) Sean McDonough writes a column in the Sunday Globe, Tom Caron does some play-by-play. Jim Baker previews the ABC Super Bowl TV coverage.
FSNE has Celtics/Bucks at 7:00. NESN has BC/Villanova college basketball at 7:30. ESPN has Maryland/North Carolina at 7:00 and Wizards/Hornets at 9:00. ESPN2 has Purdue/Illinois at 7:30.