San Diego Chargers

Ladies and Gentlemen: Your 2007 Las Vegas Chargers

It’s only a matter of time before Las Vegas gets a major sports franchise. If not the Sonics, then why not the San Diego Chargers, whose lease runs out after this year. The mayor of Las Vegas, Oscar Goodman (you know, the guy who told a bunch of fourth graders that drinking gin was a hobbie.) contacted Chargers management to make a pitch for them to relocate to Sin City. However, the Chargers are not allowed to talk to cities outside of San Diego county until after Jan 1 but there’s an amendment being passed that will change that after the mayor of San Diego said he supported the Chargers desire to explore relocating.

We realize the whole Rick Tocchet scandal might keep this from happening but why hasn’t the NHL pursued moving a team to Vegas? As we know, people will bet on anything, even if Rick Tocchet will get convicted, so why not stir up interest in the NHL by putting it in the sports gambling mecca of the world? Hell, put a team store right inside Caesars. Gambling is legal in Vegas. Embrace it, Bettman!

[SignOn SanDiego]: Las Vegas makes pass at Chargers

Boston Bruins

Bruins reality show coming in November

Xbox skills are transferable!

We knew the Bruins were bad but they’ve reached a new low: looking for players through a reality show. NESN must be desperate for hockey related ratings. Filming has started for “Be a Bruin”, a competition where anyone who pays $100 can try out to be a Boston Bruin. Former Bruin greats Brad Park, Terry O’Reilly and Gerry Cheevers wll play the Simon, Paula and Randy roles.

Yesterday, about 200 people showed up for the first round of the tryouts. Out of those, 36 contestants will be invited to an all expenses paid week of competition in July where the field will be whittled down to one goalie, one defenseman, and one forward. Those three will be invited to the Bruins training camp with a shot at making the team. Everything will be filmed and there will be 8 episodes on NESN.

It’s a longshot but hell, for $100, you can tell everyone that you once tried out for an NHL team. That kind of story pays for itself many times over in “interesting-facts-about-me” you can tell chicks in a bar. Or to Alex Trebek if you ever get on Jeopardy.

[Boston Herald]: Wanna be a Boston Bruin? Now’s your chance
[Be A Bruin]: Official site

General Sports

The Weekly Sports Roundup Podcast for April 25 2006

Welcome to another episode of the Sportscolumn podcast. If you’d like to be a guest on the podcast (which is recorded Tuesday nights) or you want to suggest a topic, drop me a line at [email protected].

You can download this week’s podcast directly (running time 40 mins) or subscribe to the feed.  

If you use iTunes, just click here and then click subscribe and iTunes will take care of the rest.

Kelly Calabrese

This week’s topics include:

  • NBA Playoffs
  • NHL Playoffs
  • NASCAR sucks
  • Naked man stuck in chimney
  • Colin Finnerty’s curfew
  • Keith Hernandez… which of course leads to a discussion on helping people move
  • Celtics Dance Team and what’s wrong with the NBA
  • Women We Love Nominees

Hope you guys enjoy the podcast.  If you did enjoy it, please go to this page on Yahoo and give us a good rating so we can rise up in the rankings. If you didn’t send us an email ([email protected]) or add a comment below. Thanks for listening.

General Sports

Odds and Ends for Mon Apr 24 2006: Why we love hockey

This clip from Saturday’s Sabres-Flyers game illustrates why hockey is the toughest sport in the world. First you have a rookie getting laid out in the NHL playoffs, and then a fight breaks out because the rest of his teammates are defending him. And actual punches, not NBA-style posturing.

In other news…

[The 700 Level]: Phillies might not get into the playoffs, but fans have a new hero.

[Las Vegas Review Journal]: Andre Agassi is a big tipper.

[San Jose Mercury News]: OLN will become versus… as in the network vs good ratings.

[MSNBC]: Duke Lacrosse player wants to transfer to Syracuse. Syracuse treats him like a fat chick at a frat party

[YAY Sports]: Carmelo Anthony’s agent must hate him
[SFGate]: Iran to let women attend soccer games. Keith Hernandez says…

NHL General

Maggie the Monkey picks the 2006 NHL playoffs

A good a system as any

Ever since Eric McErlain from Off Wing Opinion joined us for the weekly podcast last week, we’ve been all over the NHL playoffs. And we’ve been rewarded with some damn exciting games over the weekend — a couple of double-overtime games, 8-1 upsets — we remember now why the NHL playoffs are better than the NBA playoffs.

In researching the experts picks for the series, we learned that Maggie the Monkey is the doyen of NHL prognosticators. Maggie, from Canadian sports network TSN, came into fame when she was the only expert on TSN to pick the Ducks to upset the Red Wings in 2003. She regulary does as well as any of the talking heads.

Oh, in case you didn’t know, Maggie picks the teams by throwing feces onto a board. Wait, no, that’s Darren Pang. Maggie spins a wheel.

Here are Maggie’s picks for the first round this year.

Tampa Bay (8) over Ottawa (1)
Carolina (2) over Montreal (7)
New York Rangers (6) over New Jersey (3)
Buffalo (4) over Philly (5)
Detroit (1) over Edmonton (8)
Colorado (7) over Dallas (2)
Calgary (3) over Anaheim (6)
San Jose (5) over Nashville (4)

So far so good for Maggie. We’ll update you after the first round.

[]: Monkey Business 2006


The Friday Sports Satire Roundup: Not so much a roundup

From The Sports Pickle, one of our favorite sites, comes this excellent take on Favre’s retirement.

Brett Favre tells waitress he needs another 45 minutes to look over the menu

Brett Favre entered his fourth hour of deciding what he would like to eat for dinner this evening at a Waveland, Mississippi, Olive Garden with no end in sight.

“Brett and his wife got here around 5:15 pm and I was excited to wait on them,” said Mindy Payne, the Favre’s waitress. “But this is getting a little ridiculous now. My shift was over two hours ago and I’m still waiting for the guy to make up his mind. It’s really rude on his part. Not only am I supposed to be home by now, but other people want a table.”

Favre said he is close to making up his mind, but needs a bit more time.

“Supposedly the kitchen closes at 11 pm, and that makes me feel kind of rushed,” said Favre. “I’m close to deciding on an appetizer – the fried calamari – so I’m getting there. As for entrees, though, I don’t have a clue. I’m hoping they’ll come up with some great new menu items by the time I have to decide and it will make my decision a lot easier.”

The Olive Garden’s manager, Mike Redd, said he may have to decide to ask the quarterback to leave.
“It’s tough to ask a local legend like Brett Favre to leave your establishment,” said Redd. “But he’s taking advantage of our goodwill. He’s been here for going on five hours and hasn’t paid a dollar yet while we’re losing business because we can’t get other customers to a table. I’ve really lost a lot of respect for the guy.”

(Republished with permission from

If you were looking for more satire stories this week, we don’t have any for you. It was a pretty weak offering by the usual suspects this week, except for this excellent sportsgraphic NHL Season Highlights from the Onion.

Calgary Flames

Darren McCarty is broke

Can you imagine being a professional hockey player for 12 years in the NHL and being over $6M in debt? We feel really bad for Darren McCarty even if he was a Detroit Red Wing.

Among his debts are $185,000 to three casinos. Of course, this is what everyone is focusing on because of the recent Rick Tocchet scandal but McCarty insists that the did not bet on any hockey games. He had previously said that he wanted to compete in the World Series of Poker but considering his gambling losses, that’s probably not going to happen.

Look at his assets: $5,600 in jewelry, two Harley-Davidson motorcycles worth $16,000, $500 in golf clubs and a house where the mortgage exceeds its market value. Think about this for a second. This guy is a professional athlete, a former star in the NHL, and your golf clubs are worth more than his. That’s just sad.

Finally, the Red Wings bought out his contract last year for $539k but most of that went to his ex-wife. No wonder the guy is broke. I guess the sayings’ true. In the poker game of life, women are the rake man. They are the fuckin’ rake.

[Globe and Mail]: NHL veteran McCarty embarrassed by bankruptcy

NHL General

Oh the irony – Betting on Tocchet conviction

Who says we have a gambling problem?  Just because Vegas did about $100M in legal action on the Super Bowl doesn’t mean we’re out of control right?  Hold on a second while I figure out the best odds on Tocchet getting convicted for “financing a gambling ring.” has the follow odds:
Convicted & Jail Time – 250
Convicted & Probation – 600
Not Guilty + 400 has:
Be found guilty of Promoting Gambling  -350  
Be found not guilty of Promoting Gambling  +400  
Promoting Gambling charge will be dropped   +1000  
Mistrial on the charge of Promoting Gambling +2000

Hmmmm, things don’t look good for The Rick.    

NHL General

Rick Tocchet gambling ring update

Honey, what’s the line on
the Lakers-Suns tonight?

Things are certainly heating up in the “Operation Slap Shot” scandal. Rick Tocchet was put on an indefinite leave of absence by the NHL and the commissioner reserves the right to change the terms of the leave of absence at any time, i.e. fire his ass whenever the truth comes out. The NHL is in full damage control mode, having hired the Unabomber prosecutor to investigate the matter.

Meanwhile, a couple of other names were added to the list of those involved in the gambling ring in some capacity, Mark Recchi and John LeClair, former Flyers players. Recchi and LeClair have denied the allegations and threatened to sue the TV station in Philly that leaked their names.

The most sensational part of this scandal is the potential involvement with organized crime. In the early 1990s, when Tochett was still with the Flyers, he was linked to a mobster named Joey Merlino who bet heavily on hockey games using information he obtained from Tocchet. Merlino was also linked to Eric Lindros at the time. The feds have not specified Merlino by name but do mention the link to Merlino’s organization.

Lots of rumors abound and one in particular is very damaging. While the Great One claims to have no knowledge of his wife’s gambling habits, rumor has it that she placed as much as $500,000 in bets. I know Gretzky is rich but 500 grand is alot of money to toss around. Gretzky said that he and his wife did not discuss her involvement and only talked about their concern for Tocchet. Yeah, I’m sure in discussing the biggest scandal to rock the NHL, her bets didn’t come up in the conversation.

We’ll keep you updated as we find out more but for now here are two commentaries you should read.

[James Mirtle]: The Rick Tocchet scandal: Day 3
[Tom Benjamin]: Ticky Tacky Tocchet