Irene Serge in the Boston Globe looks at if Jason Wolfe can do for WRKO what he’s done for WEEI.
Be sure to check out Sheriff Sully who has a great column on a side of Will McDonough most of us never got a chance to see. Having talked to others who dealt with McDonough, I can say with confidence that this view of the late Globe columnist is accurate.
The Celtics submitted one of their poorer efforts in recent memory as they were wiped off the floor by the Grizzlies in Memphis last night, 93-76. Paul Pierce was held to 15 points in the loss, which hurts the Celtics as they attempt to make a late season playoff push. Peter May observes that the Celtics came out as flat as morning-after lager. Steve Bulpett looks at the Celtics (sleep)walking in Memphis last night as they failed to show up. Ronald Tillery in the Memphis Commercial Appeal looks at the Grizzlies feasting on the Celtics.
Jerome Solomon reports on David Givens bolting the Patriots to sign with the Tennessee Titans. Albert Breer has Brad Blank saying up front that this was about the money. John Tomase also looks at Givens, whose agent said that even though they had a chance to match, things with the Patriots were pretty much at the point of no return for the receiver. Alan Greenberg also looks at the departure of Givens. Michael Parente notes that with Givens being the latest to defect, the Patriots are likely to sport a whole new look come training camp next season.
Michael Felger says that while the Patriots might be quiet during these opening days of free agency, it’s because they’re focused on value, and many times you just can’t get that early on in the process. John Tomase thinks that Keyshawn Johnson, who was released by the Cowboys yesterday in a salary cap move, could be a good fit for the Patriots. Tomase’s notebook says that Adam Vinatieri will travel to Green Bay later this week to meet with the Packers. There’s plenty of NFL news on the New York Sports Pages as well.
Tony Massarotti looks at Terry Francona’s contract extension and notes that perhaps the Red Sox learned from past mistakes, as this negotiation was quiet and professional. Sean McAdam says that Francona’s new deal is a winner for everyone involved. David Heuschkel also looks at the contract extension for Francona, who in many ways is the ideal manager for the Red Sox. David Borges looks at an appreciative Francona, who is thankful for the situation he finds himself in. Jon Couture also examines the extension for the Red Sox skipper. Dan Shaughnessy knocks the lack of respect that fans and even Francona’s employers have had for the Sox manager. He also somehow finds a way to work Glenn Ordway’s name into the column. (And take a shot without taking a shot)
John Habib looks at the Red Sox returning Rule V pitcher Jamie Vermilyea to the Toronto Blue Jays. The notebooks all lead with the struggles of Bronson Arroyo. Massarotti’s notebook has Arroyo thinking that he’s headed to the bullpen when the season begins. McAdam’s notebook has Francona in Arroyo’s corner despite another shaky outing by the righty. Straining to find something positive, Borges’ notebook observes that Arroyo’s ERA did come down yesterday. From 19 to 17. Shaughnessy’s notebook has Arroyo struggling with his command. Couture’s notebook has Arroyo hanging in there despite the shaky outing.
The Inside Track says that the Red Sox are looking for WEEI or some other station to pony up the richest radio deal in baseball history. If they don’t get it, they may buy their own station.
Nick Cafardo looks at concerns over Johnny Damon’s sore left shoulder, which have people upset in New York. Barry Bonds in the on the provisional roster for the U.S., meaning that he could be added to the roster if they advance to the next round. Possibly even as a replacement for Damon. Steve Buckley (subscription only) says that this cannot be allowed to happen. Buckley also has Ken Griffey Jr denying that Bonds ever spoke to him about steroid use.
Stephen Harris, Kevin Paul Dupont and Dan Hickling look at the Bruins losing to the Maple Leafs 5-4 in an OT shootout. Dupont’s notebook has Tim Thomas being victimized by his teammates lack of discipline on defense. Harris’ notebook looks at rookie Mark Stuart getting some time on defense with an injury to David Tanabe. Hickling’s notebook has another rookie, Yan Stastny getting comfortable with his new team.
Lenny Megliola says that Boston College needs to overcome it’s recent postseason past and break through in this tournament. Michael Vega looks at BC senior point guard Louis Hinnant, who does the little things for the Eagles. Mark Murphy profiles coach Al Skinner, who is described as a master of getting the most out of players who fall through the cracks, such as senior forward Craig Smith. Jim Donaldson also has a look at the Eagles coach.
David Scott looks at Dick Vitale who has done much to make March Madness what it is today. Jeff Goodman looks at a trio of local coaches in the NCAA tournament who have local connections. Mark Blaudschun looks at UConn and Villanova getting revved up to go in the NCAA’s after losing in the Big East tournament. Matt Eagan says there are no magic formulas to help you in filling out your bracket. Jon Couture says that not everyone gets caught up in March madness though. Murphy’s notebook looks at BC getting delayed again in their trip to Utah yesterday.
The BSMW messageboard has their own NCAA bracket group challenge set up. If you want to participate in a BSMW front page reader bracket group from ESPN, I created a BSMW_Public group if you want to participate in that. You’ll need to sign up for a free user account on ESPN.com (make sure you opt out of the many advertising options) and then click on this above link to join the group.
ESPN and ESPN2 have NIT action at 7:00. ESPN has Suns/Clippers at 9:00.