Thursday, February 28, 2008

Sam I am

Ten free minutes for me, 10 free throwaway lines for you . . .

1. Two quick thoughts about the Celtics while I worry that someone (Denver? Dallas>) will ruin the master plan by snatching up Sam Cassell on waivers:

• Call it the luck of the Irish, I suppose, but how fortunate are the Celtics that the two pieces they most need to pursue a championship - a veteran big man who can rebound and play D, and a veteran guard to run the offense and knock down a big jumper or two - are both available as free agents with 25 or so games remaining in the season?

• I'm actually more excited about getting Brown than Cassell, if only because Kendrick Perkins has been extra sluggish lately (one rebound against Cleveland the other night). If Perk isn't rebounding and hustling on defense, there's really no reason for him to be on the floor. Truth be told, I'd rather see undersized but remarkably efficient Leon Powe out there over him in most situations.

2. By the way, remind me to cross Marty Burns of off my reading list. Here's what he wrote recently about the possibility of Antoine Walker getting bought out by the Timberwolves:

If Minnesota did buy out Walker, and he cleared waivers, he would be free to sign with any team (he must be waived by March 1 to be eligible to play for another team in the postseason). The Celtics, Rockets, Warriors and Nuggets are among the clubs that might be interested in his services.

Now, I'm not questioning Mr. Burns's credentials or credibility, and he did couch his suggestion with the word "might," but let's put it this way: There's a better chance Danny Ainge names himself and Doc Rivers the starting backcourt than there is of him even considering adding Hurricane 'Toine to this team.

3. Sure, you mock Tony La Russa and his mighty big brain right now after hearing about his latest look-how-smart-I-am scheme, but let's hear what you have to say when Matt Clement and Joel Pineiro combine to bat .320 with 102 RBIs from the No. 8 hole this season.

4. Can't help but have kind of a what-might-have-been vibe to Rosevelt Colvin's departure from the Pats. He ended up being a steady and dependable player during his five seasons here - don't tell me you haven't wondered if he might have made a difference against the Giants - but it's fair to say he was never again the dynamic speed rusher he was in Chicago after suffering that devastating hip injury in Week 2 of the '03 season. It's to his credit that he somewhat reinvented himself after that injury, becoming a better all-around defender. He was a fine player and seemed like a class act, and I wish him well.

5. Really curious what motivated Jose Canseco, baseball's Typhoid Mary of steroids, to testify under oath that Roger Clemens wasn't at his infamous pool party. It's possible that Canseco's chicken nugget of a brain doesn't have enough storage space left to retain 10-year-old memories. But given that Canseco reportedly is hard up for cash (ask Magglio Ordonez), one can't help but wonder if there's some sort of devious deal at play here. I wouldn't put such a thing past either one of them.

6. I get the sense Joe Maddon wants the Rays to take a chance on Barry Bonds, and why not? Provided he's still taking the right mix of vitamins, the swollen tick of a slugger still has enough left to anchor a Tampa Bay lineup that has a chance to be one of the best in the AL. Besides, after dealing with the clinically insane Elijah Dukes and raging jerk Delmon Young last season, Maddon is well-equipped to deal with Bonds's unique brand of narcissism.

7. Maybe Eagles superfan Arlen Spector can explain it to me, but I don't quite understand why Philadelphia thinks Asante Samuel is a huge upgrade over Lito Sheppard, especially when you factor in the ridiculously fat contract Samuel is going to command. I like Samuel a lot and appreciate that he's been a key to the Patriots defense the past few seasons, but he's not a quote-unquote "shutdown corner." He's smart, reads quarterbacks well, gambles a lot, has excellent hands (with one $(%*#$ exception), and makes more big plays than he allows. But all things considered, he's not that much better than Sheppard, a two-time Pro Bowler, and if the Patriots somehow end up with him as Samuel's replacement, I'll consider it a very shrewd tradeoff by Patriots management.

8. It always make me feel a little older when a player I've enjoyed and appreciated for so many years calls it a career, so in that sense I'm glad Tedy Bruschi is returning to the Patriots; it really wouldn't be quite the same without ol' No. 54 around. That said, here's hoping his role is reduced next season - greatly. Bruschi has obviously lost a step or two the past few seasons - to be honest, it looked to me like Junior Seau has more gas left in the tank - and it is imperative that some how, some way, the Patriots get younger at linebacker next season. I'm glad Bruschi is still here. I just hope they're not heavily relying on him.

9. We know all about Manny's eight-digit salary, but who knew he has a pair of six-digit feet?

10. As for today's Completely Random Baseball Card:

Nope, no relation to Manny.

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