|Articles||Go Fund Me||All-Species List||Hot Spots||Go Fund Me|
|Web Epoch NJ Web Design | (c) Copyright 2016 StocksandNews.com, LLC.|
Brady and Rodgers Go Down
Add-On posted late Tues. p.m.
Bengals at Chiefs…3:00 ET CBS
49ers at Rams…6:30 FOX
What a weekend we had, and the two matchups next Sunday could be nearly as good, especially 49ers-Rams, with the intense rivalry angle between San Francisco and Los Angeles to begin with. By the way, while Jimmy Garoppolo is hardly Mahomes or Allen, he is nonetheless 4-1 in the playoffs.
But looking back at Sunday night’s all-time classic (after I posted), what many are calling the greatest playoff game of all time, and it’s tough to argue that…for the archives, Kansas City led Buffalo 23-21 after three quarters.
Then K.C. kicked a field goal to make it 26-21 with 8:55 left in the fourth.
Buffalo countered with a Josh Allen to Gabriel Davis TD pass, and the Bills converted for two, Buffalo leading 29-26 with only 1:54 remaining after a 17 play, 75-yard drive.
Then it really got crazy.
K.C. went back into the lead, 33-29, on a 64-yard pass play from Patrick Mahomes to Tyreek Hill, part of a 5 play, 75-yard drive. Only 1:02 remained.
Josh Allen then led the Bills downfield, 6 plays, 75 yards, culminating in another TD pass to Gabriel Davis, his record fourth of the game. 36-33 Buffalo…and only 0:13 seconds left.
They’ll be talking about the next play, the kickoff, for decades in Buffalo, but coach Greg McDermott chose to kick it deep and into the end zone, rather than squib it and chew up a few seconds. [More on this later.]
Mahomes, with timeouts in his pocket, hit Tyreek Hill for 19 yards to the K.C. 44, 0:08 left. Timeout.
Mahomes hit Travis Kelce for 25 to the Buffalo 31, timeout, 0:03 left.
Harrison Butker then nailed the 49-yarder to send the game into overtime, 36-36.
Kansas City won the coin toss and Mahomes marched the Chiefs 75 yards down the field, winning the game with an 8-yard pass to Travis Kelce in the endzone, terrific catch by Kelce.
Josh Allen finished 27/37, 329, 4-0, 136.0, with 68 yards rushing on 11 carries.
Mahomes was 33/44, 378, 3-0, 123.1, with 69 yards on the ground in seven carries and a touchdown. After the two-minute warning, Mahomes went 10 of 13 for 188 yards and two touchdowns.
It was the first time in NFL history that both QBs threw for 300, ran for 50 or more, and threw zero interceptions.
As a local commentator said Monday, rare is the occasion where the losing quarterback’s reputation soared as it did with Josh Allen after his two monster games in the playoffs, the other in the win over New England where he threw five touchdowns…so 9 in two games, no interceptions. He is officially a superstar.
Mahomes is now 8-2 in the playoffs, 25 touchdown passes, just five interceptions.
Two other players’ stats deserve recognition.
Gabriel Davis, who has been a 3rd or 4th receiver, had eight receptions for 201 yards and the record four touchdowns.
And Tyreek Hill had a monster game, 11 catches, 150 yards, a TD, and a key 45-yard punt return, coach Andy Reid picking his spots in which to put Hill back there on a return, like this was the first time all year.
Reid won his 19th playoff game, third-most in NFL history. If he beats the Bengals, he’ll move into a tie with Tom Landry for second all time.
Bill Belichick 31-12
Don Shula 19-17
Reid is also the first coach in NFL history to lead multiple teams to four consecutive conference title games (Philadelphia, 2001-04).
--Other tidbits from the past weekend.
K.C. will be hosting the AFC title game for a fourth straight year, an NFL record for consecutive seasons doing so.
SoFi Stadium will become the first stadium in NFL history to host both a conference title game and a Super Bowl in the same year.
With all four games this weekend ending on a walk-off score, it marked the first time in NFL history that there has been four game-winning scores with no time left in a single postseason. And it happened in a 48-hour period!
Bengals rookie kicker Evan McPherson has hit all 15 of his field goals attempted on the road.
The Titans have been the top seed a total of three times in franchise history and are 0-3. [Aside from this year, they lost in 2008 and 2000.]
--As for the status of Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers….
There was speculation prior to the Rams game that Brady was thinking about retiring and I’m guessing that is indeed the case, to be announced after the Super Bowl, after he’s taken a long vacation with Giselle.
After the game the GOAT said, “I haven’t put a lot of thought into it. So, you know, we will just take it day by day and kind of see where we are at.”
“I feel great,” Brady said. “Physically, I feel great.”
These were Brady’s comments Sunday.
Monday, my initial thoughts that he’ll announce his retirement after the Super Bowl (so as not to take away from the game), were enhanced when Brady commented in an interview with Jim Gray:
“Football is extremely important in my life. And it means a lot to me,” he said. “And I care a lot about what we’re trying to do as a team. And I care a lot about my teammates. And the biggest difference now that I’m older is I have kids now too, you know, and I care about them a lot as well. They’ve been my biggest supporters.”
“My wife is my biggest supporter. It pains her to see me get hit out there. And she deserves what she needs from me as a husband and my kids deserve what they need from me as a dad,” Brady, 44, continued.
“It’s not always what I want. It’s what we want as a family. And I’m gonna spend a lot of time with them and figure out in the future what’s next.”
Yup, he’s retiring. He has another year left on his two-year, $50 million contract with the Bucs but that doesn’t mean anything. He’ll make that in endorsements and his new clothing line in about a month.
As for Rodgers, he made it clear on Saturday he doesn’t want to be part of any rebuild, and that’s what he expects in Green Bay, so he’s finished with the Packers, and it limits the teams he might be willing to go to on a 2-year contract (I’m just musing).
My friend Whit W. suggested the Steelers, which makes sense with Big Ben gone, but I see the team on the decline. Can they convince Rodgers otherwise…that’s it’s not a rebuild?
Other teams that could make sense are Denver, Miami, Indianapolis and Cleveland, even with the Browns having exercised Baker Mayfield’s fifth-year option.
Rodgers today said he might wait until late February to early March to see how the Packers’ “franchise tag” situation plays out with favored receiver Davante Adams.
Lastly, you have to respect the hell out of Matthew Stafford’s play, the monkey off his back (and hopefully in a zoo somewhere, where he can do no harm…your editor not a fan of monkeys, except gibbons and orangutans…the latter which are really great apes, which we do love, but I digress…).
--Ben Volin / Boston Globe
“It’s not hyperbole. The Divisional Round of the NFL playoffs was truly the greatest football weekend ever.
“Four games, all decided on the final play. Three road teams winning by a field goal. Both No. 1 seeds going down. The Chiefs winning a shootout for the ages. Tom Brady almost completing another improbable comeback. The Rams pulling off a miracle. Lambeau Field in the snow. Dazzling quarterback play. Wild swings. Each game more exciting than the next.
“But the games also produced a rather important question: Can’t anyone coach around here?
“It was not exactly a banner weekend for the guys wearing the headsets. Three of the four games were essentially decided as much by terrible coaching as by the players, which is where we begin the review….
“Mahomes doesn’t get a chance to be the hero if Bills coach Sean McDermott doesn’t whiff on the kickoff decision with 13 seconds left. With his team leading, 36-33, McDermott inexplicably had Tyler Bass kick the ball out of the end zone for a touchback, giving the Chiefs the ball on the 25 and not taking any time off the clock.
“Clearly, the Bills should have kicked to force a return. The clock would have started as soon as the ball touched a Chief, and 3-4 seconds would have been consumed. [Ed. not necessarily true…as I’ll counter later.]* McDermott’s decision might have been understandable if Tyreek Hill were back deep. But it was Byron Pringle, who had one kickoff return for 26 yards in the game and had a long of 39 all season.
“Mahomes needed just two plays to get into field goal range – a 19-yard pass to Hill and a 25-yard pass to Travis Kelce, who was wide open over the middle. Not a moment of glory for Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, either.
“Each play took five seconds off the clock. Had McDermott kicked the ball into play, the Chiefs would have had one play to get into field goal range. That one play made all the difference, and McDermott has a long, painful offseason to dwell on it.
“The Rams-Buccaneers affair was not a coaching clinic, either. Sean McVay and Matthew Stafford almost became the new Dan Quinn and Matt Ryan by choking away a 27-3 lead. After going up by that score early in the third quarter, the Rams offense went fumble, punt, fumble, missed field goal, punt, fumble. Brady and the Bucs offense didn’t even play that well, yet they crawled all the way back to 27-27.
“But McVay and Stafford were bailed out by a baffling decision by Bucs defensive coordinator Todd Bowles. Known as one of the league’s most aggressive coaches, Bowles sent a seven-man blitz at Stafford with just 28 seconds left, leaving Cooper Kupp, the best receiver in the NFL, one-on-one with a safety.
“Kupp, unsurprisingly, ran right past Antoine Wingfield to haul in a 44-yard catch and put the Rams in position for a game-winning 30-yard field goal at the buzzer. Even the mild-mannered Tony Dungy didn’t understand why the Bucs didn’t just play it safe.
“Making matters worse was the postgame explanation by coach Bruce Arians, who blamed the players for not hearing the call correctly.
“ ‘Some guys didn’t blitz,’ said Arians. ‘I don’t know if we didn’t get the call. It was an all-out blitz. We should’ve gotten a ton of pressure… Never second-guess. Just make sure all [players] are on the same page.’
“It took one look at the play from NFL Next Gen Stats to see that only one player didn’t blitz – middle linebacker Lavonte David. He had a clear lane to the quarterback if he had blitzed, yet instead he was out of position and Stafford had enough time to deliver the throw.
“It’s understandable if Arians wanted to deflect blame away from Bowles, who appears to a be a top candidate for at least one head coaching vacancy. But it’s poor form to point fingers at the players and throw David – the team’s captain and longest-tenured player – under the bus.
“And the criticism is misguided. Not only was Bowles’ decision unnecessarily risky, but whose fault is it if the play doesn’t get communicated correctly? The coach’s.
“The Packers’ loss to the 49ers also was decided by a vast coaching disparity, this time on special teams….
“Saturday night’s meltdown was totally in character. The Packers had two field goals blocked during the regular season, gave up a punt-return touchdown, ranked 31st in field goal percentage (73.5), and had the worst punt coverage in the NFL (12.8 average).”
*As for the end zone kickoff with 0:13 to play, Bills Coach McDermott refused to address his thought process in his end-of-season news conference, Tuesday. I just offer in his defense that Kansas City had all three timeouts left, and a squib could have been caught by a Chiefs player at like the 40, he goes to his knee, calls timeout, 0:12 left. Those saying he should have squibbed assume the returner is going to run with it, which is just kind of amazing since these same folks have watched football their entire lives and have seen only about 200 onsides kick attempts, for example.
Again, this is just a defense of McDermott. He’s not being exonerated.
--The 49ers have beaten the Rams six straight, twice each of 2019, 2020, 2021. During the regular season, Niners fans invaded SoFi Stadium to the point that for Sunday’s game, the Rams have limited their available title game tickets to residents of the greater Los Angeles region.
As the L.A. Times’ Bill Plaschke wrote:
“Stop rolling those eyes. It’s a smart move. It’s a fair effort to create a greater home-field advantage. It’s like the Giants soaking the Candlestick Park basepaths to slow down Maury Wills in 1962, only it’s not nearly as sleazy.”
--Yes, everyone wants the overtime rules changed and no doubt they will be. And it’s not worth talking about any further in these pages.
Except I will note that as Mark Cannizzaro of the New York Post wrote:
“To the Bills’ credit, they exited stage left out of Kansas City with class and didn’t complain about the flawed overtime format.
“ ‘The rules are what they are,’ Bills quarterback Josh Allen, who threw four touchdowns in the loss on what was one of the great postseason performances of all time, said diplomatically. ‘I can’t really complain about it because if it happened to us, we’d be out there celebrating like [the Chiefs] did.’….
“ ‘Everything that happens in life is a lesson,’ Bills safety Jordan Poyer said. ‘And you either grow from it or die from it.’ [Ed. what a great statement.]
“Hopefully, watching what transpired Sunday night in this classic game that deserved more, the NFL will learn a lesson and change the rule.
Since the current overtime rules in the playoffs were adopted in 2010, the team that won the coin toss has now scored a touchdown in the opening possession in seven of the 11 games, per ESPN Stats & Info data.
--Tuesday, in what was not a real surprise, Saints coach Sean Payton announced he was leaving after 15 seasons in which he secured a Super Bowl victory and teamed with Drew Brees to form one of the most successful coach-and-quarterback tandems in NFL history.
The 58-year-old was 152-89, .631, and led his team to the playoffs nine of the 15 years. In the postseason he was 9-8, including the 2009 run to the Super Bowl. He missed the 2012 season as part of the NFL’s penalties against the Saints for the “Bountygate” scandal.
The Saints missed the playoffs this season with a record of 9-8; playing without Brees, who retired after last season, and starter Jameis Winston, who New Orleans lost early to a season-ending knee injury.
Payton will clearly take a year off to do some broadcasting and then hop right back into the game.
MLB / Hall of Fame
--David Ortiz was the only player selected for the Hall of Fame today as the result of the voting that was released early this evening. Ortiz received 77.9%, 75% required for enshrinement.
Curt Schilling, who was at 71.2% last year, plummeted to 58.6% in his final season of eligibility, before he’s thrown into the Veterans Committee pool. Schilling made it clear he didn’t want to be in the Hall, so the voters complied. Good riddance. He did issue a classy statement today congratulating his teammate Ortiz.
But what an idiot. If he had kept his mouth shut, he’s in.
As for Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens, I nailed it a few weeks ago when I said they would get 65.0% in their final year…and Bonds received 66.0%, Clemens 65.2%. Further proof that you totally ignore the ‘public voting’ that people stupidly fall for.
Alex Rodriguez only garnered 34.3% in his first year and that does not bode well for the lad.
Jeff Kent is out at 32.7% in his final year of eligibility.
To me the big one was Omar Vizquel, who last season was up to 49.1% in his fifth season and would have eventually gotten in over the next few years, EXCEPT for one small detail. Make that two. Last season, after some writers had filled in their ballots, his estranged wife alleged Vizquel abused her in an interview with The Athletic, and then eight months later, a civil allegation alleged he sexually abused a bat boy while he was managing the White Sox’s double-A club. The team ended its relationship with Vizquel and Omar fell to 23.9% this time in his sixth year on the ballot.
Among the others, Scott Rolen is firmly on the way at 63.2% in his sixth year, Todd Helton is at 52.0% after year five, and Andruw Jones is up to 44.1% after six years.
Billy Wagner is up to 51.0%, but with only two years left.
The Veterans Committee (now called the Today’s Game era committee) actually meets in a few weeks and it’s possible they will take up the issue of Bonds and Clemens, and Schilling, either now, or announce they will give them a little more time in the corner.
Back to Ortiz, I have problems with him and steroids, but I won’t bitch any further.
--Meanwhile, in the discussions between the owners and the players to come up with a new collective bargaining agreement, on Monday the Players Association presented their counterproposal to the owners’ proposal from last week and reports were that while it was contentious at times, there was some optimism at the end of the day. Neither side commented after, but there was movement.
It seems two of the big sticking point issues are the luxury tax and minimum salaries.
For example on the latter, the union wants the league minimum salary of $570,500 to be increased to $775,000. MLB offered to raise the minimum salary from $570,500 to $600,000, $650,000 for players with at least one year of service and $700,000 for at least two years of service.
Tuesday, MLB increased its first-year offer, marginally, to $615,000, but kept the other two levels the same.
The two sides have already all but officially agreed to a universal DH, with the elimination of draft pick compensation that penalizes teams for signing premier free-agent players.
The union is also willing to expand the postseason from 10 teams to 12, but MLB is seeking a 14-team format.
Talks will continue…and that’s good.
--New AP Top 25 Poll (records a/o Sunday)
1. Auburn (45) 18-1
2. Gonzaga (15) 15-2
3. Arizona (1) 16-1
4. Baylor 17-2
5. Kansas 16-2
6. Purdue 16-3
T-7. Houston 17-2
T-7. UCLA 13-2
9. Duke 15-3
10. Michigan State 15-3
11. Wisconsin 15-3
12. Kentucky 15-4
13. Texas Tech 15-4
14. Villanova 14-5
15. Southern Cal 16-2
16. Ohio State 12-4
17. Providence 16-2
18. Tennessee 13-5
19. LSU 15-4
20. UConn 13-4
21. Xavier 14-4
22. Marquette 14-6…beat 3 straight ranked teams
23. Iowa State 14-5
24. Illinois 13-5
25. Davidson 16-2…first time in top 25 snice March 2015
Auburn is ranked No. 1 for the first time in program history (the AP poll around since 1948-49 season).
If you carry out the votes, Wake Forest is No. 33.
And then the Deacs hosted Boston College on Monday in Winston-Salem and Wake blew B.C. out, 87-57, holding the Eagles to a pathetic 25.4% from the field, while the Deacs shot 53.7%, star Alondes Williams again filling up the stat sheet….20 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists. He leads the ACC in both scoring and assists and, should he finish that way, would be the first to do so.
So Wake is 17-4, 7-3, while B.C. falls to 8-10, 3-5. Your editor won yet another lunch from B.C. alum Steve D. at the world famous Ferraro’s in Westfield, N.J. [We’ve been betting on Wake-B.C. football, basketball and baseball games for over 15 years, since B.C. moved into the ACC in 2005. A good tradition to have with a friend who lives in your area where you have schools with at least two sports in common, same conference.]
Also Monday, 5 Kansas pulled out a thriller at home against 13 Texas Tech, 94-91 in overtime.
Red Raiders forward Bryson Williams had 33 points, Williams a classic player of the new era, a fifth-year senior forward who played two years at Fresno State and two at UTEP before transferring to Texas Tech.
For Kansas, star Achai Agbaji had a career-high 37.
Tonight, 24 Illinois edged 10 Michigan State, 56-55. 9 Duke held on to beat Clemson, 71-69.
And, wow, just watched last six minutes of Auburn (19-1, 8-0) at Missouri (8-11, 2-5), No. 1 barely hanging on, 55-54.
--I didn’t mention the John Stockton-Gonzaga situation last time because I was first. He was a yearend Bar Chat honoree, for all the wrong reasons. He’s already got his hardware for being an amazing jerk.
--American Madison Keys had 11 wins in 2021…as in she won 11 matches the whole year. But after a 6-3, 6-2 quarterfinal win over French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova, Keys has 11 match wins just this year, all in Melbourne, including two other tournaments leading up to the Aussie Open.
Keys will face top-seed Ashleigh Barty in one semifinal, the other pairing to be determined.
On the men’s side, Rafael Nadal continues to survive and he’s into the semis, where he will face 7-seed Matteo Berretini.
Nadal showed his grit and toughness in beating Canada’s Denis Shapovalov 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-3 despite struggling physically in the fourth set, when he needed medication for what seemed to be a stomach issue.
It is hoped the other semi is 4 Stefanos Tsitsipas vs. 2 Daniil Medvedev, but both first have to win their quarterfinal matches.
Again, it would just be poetic justice that it’s Nadal, and not Djokovic, who is the first to 21 Grand Slam titles after all the crap Novak put the sport, the tournament, and Australia through.
--America’s prime hope for the women’s downhill in Beijing, Breezy Johnson, said Monday that she would not compete in the Games because of torn right knee cartilage she sustained in the second of two high-speed training crashes this month.
This really sucks. Johnson had three second-place finishes in her last three World Cup races in what was the best season of her career. I was wondering why she hadn’t entered the last two events. She suffered a terrible crash in training last week at Cortina, the second accident.
“I felt a crunch in my knee and thought I had shattered my meniscus into 400,000 pieces,” Johnson said Monday. An MRI revealed that “a massive chunk of cartilage had peeled off the bone,” Johnson said doctors told here.
She’ll have surgery in the U.S. and hopes to be back for next season.
Meanwhile, I wrote of last weekend’s results at Cortina and after Sofia Goggia, the defending Olympic champion won the downhill event, I didn’t realize she suffered a bad crash in Sunday’s super-G race and she might be too injured to compete in Beijing. Which would really, really suck.
--Reminder…this week’s PGA Tour event at Torrey Pines is a Wed.-Sat. affair, the tour smartly avoiding the NFL action on Sunday. Ergo, the final round, Saturday, has far more of the sports eyeballs.
--An Oklahoma State wrestler and track athlete were involved in a serious car crash Monday night.
According to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, the wrestler (I’m leaving out the names on this one) was driving his Dodge Durango with the track athlete as his passenger on a highway near Perkins, Oklahoma at about 8 p.m., when he “attempted to pass 3 vehicles while cresting a hill.” The car hit an oncoming vehicle, then left the roadway to the left and overturned several times before coming to rest in a ditch.
The cause of the collision was listed as “passing in a no-passing zone.”
The other driver was not injured. All three were wearing their seat belts.
OSU said neither of the two athletes suffered life-threatening injuries. They were returning to Stillwater after an appearance at a youth wrestling practice in Cushing.
The car they were in actually caught fire and an OSU football offensive coordinator, who was coincidentally in a car that the wrestler’s car passed, witnessed the crash and was able to pull the driver to safety after the car caught fire.
The wrestler is one of the biggest stars in his sport. It’s a miracle they both survived.
--Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Wilbert Mora, the NYPD officer who was critically injured in last Friday night’s domestic violence call/shootout in Harlem, where his partner, Jason Rivera, was killed. Mora died today of his wounds.
Friday, Rivera has a funeral service at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. I’ll have a box of Kleenex nearby watching it. Mora’s is going to be next Wednesday at St. Patrick’s as well.
The shooter died of his wounds after being shot by the third cop, rookie Sumit Sulan. The murderer is in Hell.
Sulan is very shaken up, understandably. We pray for him, too.
All three of New York’s finest are immigrants. I’ll have more to say on this in that other column I do.
Next Bar Chat, Sunday, p.m. I will wait until after the second conference championship game.
[Posted prior to completion of second NFL playoff game…Add-On up top by Wed. noon.]
Winter Olympics Quiz: 1) Which nation has won the most gold medals in the Winter Games? 2) What American has the most individual medals? 3) Who am I? I won five gold medals in the 1980 Games in Lake Placid? Answers below.
--In the opener Saturday, Cincinnati’s dream season continued, much to the chagrin of top-seed Tennessee fans. Despite being sacked nine times (tying a playoff record), the Bengals’ Joe Burrow still passed for 348 yards, favorite target Ja’Marr Chase with five receptions for 109.
But the keys to the game were twofold. Cincinnati had rookie kicker Evan McPherson, and the Titans’ quarterback, Ryan Tannehill, is no Joe Burrow.
Tannehill threw three interceptions, including on his opening throw of the game, picked off by former Demon Deacon Jessie Bates III, and despite the fact the Titans had Derrick Henry back for the first time since Week 8 (Henry with 62 yards on 20 carries), Tannehill kept coming up small in the key spots, including, critically, with just 20 seconds to play, which would set up Cincy’s win.
In the end, the Bengals won in Nashville because Joey B., his legend growing exponentially by the week, made the tough plays and McPherson was spectacular in nailing his four kicks from 38, 45, 54 and 52, the last one as time expired. The kid is 8 of 8 in his first two playoff games.
--In the enthralling nightcap, what with the classic Green Bay weather, including the snow, Aaron Rodgers and the top-seeded Packers were upset by San Francisco 13-10.
The Packers were done in by one of the worst special teams performances in postseason history.
The Packers had a 39-yard Mason Crosby field goal on the final play of the first that could have given them a 10-0 halftime lead blocked. And then they had the punt blocked that was returned for a touchdown, tying the game at 10-10 with 4:41 remaining.
But Rodgers still had the ball with 4:36 to play on the Green Bay 29-yard line. This was his moment, but the Packers went three-and-out, and Niners quarterback Jimmy Garropolo got it done setting up Robbie Gould for the deciding 45-yard field goal as the clock ran out, Gould 20 of 20 in his career in the postseason.
Rodgers managed only three points after a fine opening drive, culminating in a 6-yard touchdown run by AJ Dillon. But the rest of the way, San Francisco defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryan and his charges succeeded in throwing Rodgers off his game. The 49ers sacked him five times and denied Green Bay on seven of 12 third downs.
Rodgers is now 0-4 in his career against the 49ers in the playoffs, and it’s not like he lost to Tom Brady, as was the case in the NFC championship game last season. It was Jimmy Garoppolo.
After the game, Rodgers said he felt a “little numb” at the loss, adding, “I didn’t think it was going to end like this.”
Asked how he would describe his future after Saturday’s loss, Rodgers said, “I’m going to take some time and have conversations with the folks around here and take some time away. It’s fresh right now, a little shocking for sure. I thought we had a Super Bowl-caliber team. I haven’t really let the moment really sink in yet.”
But he also said: “This thing is definitely going to look different moving forward. There are a lot of decisions to come in the next couple months.”
Then Rodgers added: “I don’t want to be a part of a rebuild if I’m going to keep playing.”
And: “It’s raw right now. But I’m very proud of what I’ve been able to accomplish here, deeply thankful for so many years here and all the incredible teammates and coaches I’ve had. Man, so much gratitude for this city and this organization, such a long career here.”
I’m guessing the Packers organization wants to move on and get what they can for Rodgers in a trade, while giving Jordan Love his shot. That is if Rodgers doesn’t retire.
--I don’t go on social media after or during games. I actually just go on to post my columns and then look around then, to tell you the truth, but Rodgers became a rather easy target after the loss as many celebrated that the NFL’s most outspoken anti-vaccine player was booted from the playoffs and won’t have a Super Bowl platform for his anti-science beliefs. [In an ESPN profile this week he also said Joe Biden wasn’t elected legitimately.]
“Let’s go, Aaron!” became a parody of “Let’s go, Brandon.”
Or as Grant Brisbee, a writer for The Athletic, tweeted: “Everyone stop making fun of Aaron Rodgers, he hates being needled.”
--Gee, you think San Francisco special teams’ coordinator Richard Hightower has his pick of top jobs this offseason?
--Robbie Gould is not only 20-of-20 on field goals in the playoffs, but he’s also 32-of-32 on extra points in the postseason.
--This afternoon, the Rams took a 20-3 halftime lead over the Buccaneers in Tampa Bay, and it could have been 27-3 as L.A.’s Cam Akers fumbled at the Tampa Bay goal line with seconds remaining in the second quarter.
Matthew Stafford was a cool 18/24, 229, 2-0, 132.1 at the intermission and Tom Brady a putrid 10/22, 112, 0-1, 42.4.
The big play was Stafford completing a 3rd and 20 to Cooper Kupp that Kupp took 70 yards to make it 17-3.
And so all L.A. did was score on their second drive of the second half, 27-3, and it was over.
Until it wasn’t….
Brady rallied the Bucs back, amidst a comedy of errors by both teams, but at 27-13, Rams kicker Matt Gay, a Pro Bowler, was inexplicably short on a 47-yarder, and before you could say “Bedtime for Bonzo,” it was 27-27 with 0:42 seconds left, L.A.’s ball.
And then Stafford…and old reliable, Cooper Kupp…hooked up twice for 64 yards, setting up a 30-yard game-winner by Gay.
What an amazing finish.
I’ll say Brady retires.
Stafford finished 28/38, 366, 2-0, 121.2. Kupp 9-183-1. Brady 30/54, 329, 1-1, 72.2.
The Rams won despite losing four fumbles.
--And with the Bills-Chiefs at 7-7 with 9:00 to go in the first half in the nightcap, I just have to move on.
--The NFL and NFL Players Association have agreed to halt daily Covid-19 testing for unvaccinated players, putting them in the same category as vaccinated players and coaches.
Well isn’t this conveeenient.
The NFL’s last release on Covid had 95% of players and nearly 100% of staff members being vaccinated and with only eight teams left in the playoffs, there were apparently 12 unvaccinated players remaining, according to ESPN. Aaron Rodgers having been one of them.
--The New York Giants tabbed Buffalo assistant GM Joe Schoen as its new general manager and Schoen has immediately gotten to work on the search for a new head coach. Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll is among those on the list, along with Cowboys defensive coordinator (and former Falcons coach) Dan Quinn and former Dolphins coach Brian Flores.
--A College Football note. New USC coach Lincoln Riley picked up a huge addition in the transfer portal…Oregon running back Travis Dye, the Pac-12’s leader in all-purpose yards last season. In his career with the Ducks, Dye had 3,111 rushing yards, 869 receiving and 29 total touchdowns over four years. He had a final year of eligibility in this Covid-era and he took it. Should he stay healthy, he’ll only improve his NFL Draft standing for 2023.
Stanford running back Austin Jones announced he was transferring to USC the day before.
--Wednesday, 11 Villanova (13-5, 6-2) fell at home to Marquette (13-6, 5-3) 57-54.
--Thursday, Indiana (14-4, 5-3) pulled off a biggie in upsetting 4 Purdue (15-3, 4-3).
--Friday, 14 Michigan State (15-3, 6-1) defeated 8 Wisconsin (15-3, 6-2) on the road, 86-74.
And 17 Illinois (13-5, 6-2), playing without star big man Kofi Cockburn (concussion) suffered a brutal loss to Maryland (10-9, 2-6), 81-65. Danny Manning with a nice win as interim coach for the Terps.
--Saturday, Missouri State (15-6, 6-2) upset 22 Loyola Chicago (14-3, 5-1), 79-69.
Rutgers (11-7, 5-3) which has been playing well in the Big Ten, inexplicably lost at Minnesota (11-5, 2-5), who was playing with the minimum seven scholarship players, 68-65. That’s a killer come NCAA tournament selection time.
And in the ACC, us Wake Forest fans are ecstatic over our play this season. After a disappointing loss at home to Duke about 10 days ago, the Deacs picked up huge road wins at Virginia and Georgia Tech, breaking long losing streaks in each building, and then last night Wake rolled over North Carolina (12-6, 4-3) 98-76; Jake LaRavia with a career-high 31 points and 10 rebounds, the ACC’s leading scorer, Alondes Williams, with 23.
What a job by coach Steve Forbes (and key assistant Brooks Savage, as any observer of the team knows). The Deacs are now 16-4, 6-3, and right in the mix after being picked 13th out of 15 teams preseason in the conference.
After Florida State’s big win Saturday at Miami, 61-60, the ACC standings look like this.
Florida State 6-2
Notre Dame 5-2
Wake Forest 6-3
But don’t let down Monday against Boston College, Wake! [I have a lunch on the line.]
One more…boy, this isn’t Roy Williams’ Carolina. I didn’t like the pick of Hubert Davis to succeed him and there simply isn’t a lot of talent on the team. Granted, I haven’t watched them closely, but this is a mediocre squad.
--An independent arbitrator has ruled that UConn improperly fired former men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie and must pay him more than $11 million.
Ollie’s lawyer called Thursday’s ruling a “total vindication” for Ollie, who was fired in 2018 after the school reported numerous NCAA violations in his program.
UConn said it “vigorously disagrees” with the arbitrator’s decision.
The Huskies were placed on probation for two years and Ollie was sanctioned individually for those violations, which occurred between 2013 and 2018.
Ollie, a former UConn point guard, led the Huskies to a national championship in 2014.
--My incredibly mediocre Knicks (23-24), after losing their last three at home, finally played well this afternoon at the Garden, defeating the Clippers (23-25) 110-102, RJ Barrett with 28 points and 14 rebounds.
--Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso will undergo surgery early next week for a fractured right wrist and he’ll miss six to eight weeks, according to the team.
This is big. Caruso is a key piece for the 28-16 Bulls, averaging 8 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists mostly off the bench.
But the story is how he got hurt in Chicago’s 94-90 loss Friday night at Milwaukee.
Cheap shot artist and all-time punk, Grayson Allen, fouled Caruso as he was he was going up for a layup on a fast break in the third quarter. Allen hooked Caruso’s right arm, turning Caruso in the air and sending him hard to the floor on his right wrist.
“Dude just grabbed me out of the air,” Caruso said after the game. “It’s kind of bullshit. I don’t know what else you can do about it. I’m just glad that I didn’t have any major scary injuries right away.”
But then they discovered the worst. Caruso added that Allen didn’t check on him following the play, and you watch the video of the aftermath and Grayson clearly couldn’t have cared less.
Grayson Allen was a dirty ballplayer at Duke, and afterwards, Chicago head coach Billy Donovan blistered him, saying, “He has a history of this….all the way back to college. That to me was really, it was really dangerous.”
[Allen received a one-game suspension today from the league.]
The Bulls next hook up with the Bucks March 4 in Chicago.
--Joel Embiid scored 50 points in just 27 minutes on Wednesday in Philadelphia’s 123-110 victory over Orlando. Embiid, who also had 12 rebounds and three blocks, made 17 of 23 field goals and 15 of 17 free throws.
He joined Hall of Famers Allen Iverson and Wilt Chamberlain as the only players in club history with multiple games of 50 points or more, while getting at least 50 points and 10 rebounds in the fewest minutes of any NBA players since 1955, according to Elias.
Friday, Embiid had 40 points, 13 rebounds and six assists but the Sixers lost to the Clippers in Philly, 102-101, blowing a 24-point second-half lead and Sixers coach Doc Rivers got testy when asked how much of the loss could be attributed to coaching.
Rivers isn’t loved in Philadelphia after the team’s surprising second-round playoff exit to Atlanta last season, after which he torched, correctly, Ben Simmons, but the fans expect better of the team, and Embiid said after, “We got to be better prepared. We got to know our assignments.”
--Tuesday, 6:00 PM ET, we have the announcement for the Hall of Fame with all kinds of interesting stories. How will David Ortiz and Alex Rodriguez do in their first year? How will the voters separate the two on the steroids issue?
Will Curt Schilling cross the line, falling 16 votes shy last year at 71.1%? It’s his tenth and final year of eligibility.
And how much will Barry Bonds (61.8%) and Roger Clemens (61.6%) improve in their final year on the ballot?
--Meanwhile, the MLB Players Association plans to make an in-person labor proposal to the league on Monday, countering MLB’s offer last week that did little to loosen the gridlock that has gripped the sport after the league locked out the players Dec. 2.
Should the players’ offer do little to advance the negotiations, then we have a problem, spring training camps due to open in just three weeks. Opening Day is March 31.
Unfortunately, the gap between the owners and the players is wide. But let’s see what the two sides say this week.
Ken Rosenthal / The Athletic
“Not a single game should be lost.
“If it happens, the outcome will be inexcusable for Major League Baseball, a sport competing for market share in an ever-expanding entertainment universe. Fans will gladly turn to other leagues and outlets if what was once a $10 billion industry cannot get out of its own way. And the antipathy toward baseball will be particularly acute in the middle of a pandemic that has lasted for nearly two years, exhausting the patience of millions of people in the process.
“The relationship between the players and owners continues to play out like a bad marriage, with the respective leaders of both parties talking over one another instead of to each other, barely seeming to speak the same language. The difference in this equation is that the marriage cannot end in divorce. The two sides need to reach a truce, no matter how uneasy.”
This is all on Commissioner Rob Manfred, who if there is any kind of delay in the season will be forever vilified. He will be ripped to shreds and deserve all of it.
The next two weeks are going to be critical.
--Back to the Hall of Fame, Phil W. passed along an old piece by Jayson Stark from Jan. 2015 that contained Stark’s all-time one-and-done team…as in on the Hall of Fame ballot just one year, not getting the requisite 5% to stay on.
1B: Carlos Delgado
2B: Lou Whitaker
SS: Tony Fernandez
3B: Matt Williams
LF: Brian Giles
CF: Kenny Lofton
RF: Moises Alou
C: Ted Simmons…he had the last laugh
Starter: David Cone
Closer: Jesse Orosco
--Love it…Rafael Nadal has advanced to the quarter-finals as he continues his quest for a record-breaking 21st major title. Nadal, the six-seed, will be playing 14-seed Denis Shapovalov after the Canadian, 22, reached his first Aussie Open quarter-final with an impressive victory over 3-seed Alexander Zverev.
Nadal-Zverez is Tuesday (or Monday night, New York time, I think).
On the women’s side, Ashleigh Barty is into the quarter-finals. But Naomi Osaka went out in the third round, though unlike last year, was in great spirits after and looking ahead.
All kinds of movement at the bottom of the table. Friday, Norwich won its second in a row, 3-0 over Watford in a huge one.
Saturday, Newcastle got a biggie, 1-0 over Leeds. Today, Burnley finally played again, and held Arsenal to a 0-0 draw, picking up a point. Arsenal could have taken the fourth spot with a win.
At the top of the standings, Manchester City saw its winning streak snapped at 12 as it managed only a 1-1 draw at Southampton, while Manchester United picked up an important 1-0 win over West Ham, leapfrogging the Hammers for the fourth spot. For United, Marcus Rashford literally scored on like the last kick of the game, deep in injury time.
This afternoon, Chelsea handed Tottenham manager Antonio Conte his first loss in the Premier League with the Spurs, 2-0. Earlier, Liverpool defeated Crystal Palace 3-1.
Standings…Played (of 38) – Points
1. Man City…23 – 57
2. Liverpool…22 – 48
3. Chelsea…24 – 47
4. Man U…22 – 38 …Champions League line
5. West Ham…23 – 37
6. Arsenal…21 – 36
7. Tottenham…20 – 36
16. Everton…20 – 19
17. Norwich…22 – 16 …relegation line
18. Newcastle…21 – 15
19. Watford…20 – 14
20. Burnley…18 – 12
--Through Saturday’s play, the New York Rangers’ Chris Kreider, 30, having a career year, and the great Alex Ovechkin, 36, lead the league with 29 goals apiece; Kreider with a hat trick on Saturday in New York’s 7-3 win over Arizona, while Ovechkin had two in the Capitals’ 3-2 win over Ottawa.
Kreider, as Rangers fans know, has had a solid career, this being his seventh 20-goal season, but he’s never had 30, and now he’s on pace for 57.
As for the ageless Ovechkin, he’s now just seven goals behind Jaromir Jagr for third on the all-time list at 759.
--Local New York area hockey fans are mourning the death of Hall of Famer and New York Islanders’ all-time great, Clark Gillies, 67.
The Islanders announced Gillies death Friday night, with team president and general manager Lou Lamoriello saying “the entire Islanders community is devastated by the loss.” The team did not give a cause of death.
“He epitomized what it means to be a New York Islander,” Lamoriello. “The pride he felt wearing the Islanders sweater on the ice was evident by his willingness to do anything to win.
“Off the ice, he was just as big of a presence, always taking the time to give back to the local community. The New York Islanders have four Stanley Cups because of the sacrifices he and the members of those dynasty teams made for the franchise.”
Gillies was the epitome of a complete player. He had 319 goals and 378 assists in 958 games over 14 seasons with the Islanders and Buffalo Sabres, spending the bulk of his career with New York, where he sits fourth in goals (304) and points (663), and fifth in assists (359). One of 17 players on the team that won the four Cups from 1980-83 and an NHL-record 19 consecutive postseason series, he had 47 goals and 46 assists in 159 playoff games.
Gillies played on the Trio Grande line with Mike Bossy and Bryan Trottier* and scored more than 30 goals in a season six times with the Isles. He remained a popular figure around the franchise after his retirement, attending games and interacting with fans. Nicknamed “Jethro” after a character from “The Beverly Hillbillies,” Gillies was shown on the video board at Nassau Coliseum during the playoffs last year chugging a beer and crushing the can against his head.
Head coach Barry Trotz learned of the news as he came off the ice Friday night following the Islanders’ win over the Coyotes, and informed the team upon its return to the dressing room.
“He was bigger than life,” Trotz said. “You saw Clark Gillies, you thought Islander.”
Gillies was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2002.
*All three members of the Trio Grande line have had their uniform numbers retired by the Isles, with all three in the HOF.
--At the American Express tournament in La Quinta, Ca., you had a solid field, with the likes of Jon Rahm and Patrick Cantlay, Phil Mickelson, Patrick Reed, Scottie Scheffler, Tony Finau, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler and Jason Day.
But entering the final round you had three guys at the top of the leaderboard all seeking their first PGA Tour title.
Lee Hodges -18
Paul Barjon (from France) -18
Tom Hoge -17
However, it was Hudson Swafford with a 64 winning his third event. Hoge second by himself, two back.
Fowler and Mickelson missed the cut, by the way, Lefty playing particularly poorly.
Your editor is off to a dreadful start in the calendar 2022 DraftKings season….and there are some wondering if this will push him over the ledge….preferably the Cliffs of Moher.
Wake’s Will Zalatoris did have a T6, which might delay my Barney Cipriani cliff dive.
I do have to say that I watched Swafford’s Golf Channel interview after and he had a good tip. He recognized he needed to stay taller in his stance. So many of us crouch down too much.
And that’s a memo….Bernie Goldberg is here…Bernie, what say you?
--Thomas Pieters of Belgium won a biggie on the European Tour, the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, the talented Pieters perhaps one to watch as a sleeper in the majors this year.
--Miguel Angel Jimenez won the opening event on the Champions Tour on the Big Island of Hawaii (Hualalai), the 58-year-old’s 11th win of his senior circuit career. Cigars during the round and red wine after make him one of the better characters in the sport.
--Bob Goalby, the former Masters champion, died at the age of 92.
Goalby, the uncle of Jay and Jerry Haas (Wake Forest golf coach), won 11 times on the PGA Tour and was also one of the first golfers on what is now the Champions Tour. He won twice on that circuit.
It was at the 1968 Masters that Goalby won his only major, due to an incorrect scorecard signed by Argentina’s Roberto De Vicenzo that gave Goalby the title.
Goalby won the 1958 Greater Greensboro Open, picking up $2,000 for his first win. Back in 2015 at Sedgefield Country Club, he took a picture with Jerry and Jay Haas along with his great nephew, Bill, and Bill’s 1-year-old son, Will.
Jay Haas said in 2012 that one of the greatest gifts his uncle gave him was urging him to go to Wake Forest. Goalby had gotten to know Jesse Haddock, the legendary Wake golf coach, and it was Goalby who steered his nephews to go there (Jerry an All-American at Wake and now the coach the past 26 years).
--In World Cup skiing action at Cortina (Italy) this weekend, Mikaela Shiffrin didn’t go in a downhill, won by native Sofia Goggia, and finished poorly in a super-G (won by Italy’s Elena Curtoni), but Shiffrin maintained her overall WC points lead.
--Dale Earnhardt Jr. joined his dad in NASCAR’s Hall of Fame. Earnhardt saluted “Junior Nation.”
“When I stumbled, you guys were right there ready to lift me back up. There were times when I absolutely needed you – and you never let me down. We won together, and we lost together. …You should know that I don’t go into this Hall of Fame alone. I go in with you, and I go in because of you.”
And because of words like this, there’s a reason why Junior was always the most popular driver.
Dale Jr. joins his late father, seven-time Cup Series champion Dale Earnhardt. Junior won 26 times during his Cup career, including two Daytona 500s and the 2001 Pepsi 400, which came four months after his father’s death at the same track.
But he never won a championship. His impact, however, as NASCAR’s top ambassador, was huge and the sport was at its best during his career.
Red Farmer, the great late-model driver, was among the others inducted.
--New Yorkers placed a record-shattering $603 million in bets during the launch of mobile sports gambling, according to initial figures released by the state Gaming Commission on Friday.
The wagers on football, basketball, hockey and other sports generated $48.2 million in gross gaming revenues from Jan. 8-16.
That means New York – which imposes a whopping 51 percent tax on mobile sports betting operators’ revenues – has already pulled in $24.6 million for state coffers.
--A Maryland man was found dead at his home surrounded by 124 venomous and non-venomous snakes including pythons, cobras and rattlesnakes. The largest was a 14-foot Burmese python.
Neighbors alerted police after going to the house and discovering him lying on the floor, apparently unconscious. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The snakes were all in tanks and police did not find evidence of “foul play.”
Animal control experts were called in and all of the serpents were placed with out-of-state organizations with the proper licensing to take them in.
--Comedian Louie Anderson died. He was 68 and had been dealing with complications from cancer.
Anderson won a 2016 Emmy for best supporting actor for his portrayal of Christine Baskets, mother to twins played by Zach Galifianakis.
He was a familiar face elsewhere on TV, including a host on the game show “Family Feud” from 1999 to 2002, and was fixture on late-night talk shows.
--Adele announced she was forced to postpone her entire Las Vegas residency, just 24 hours before the opening night at the Caesars Palace’s Colosseum, because half her team had Covid “and it’s been impossible to finish the show.”
Adele was to perform two shows every weekend until April, with tickets ranging from $85 to $685. She was forecast to make more than $675,000 per performance.
Marvin Lee Aday, aka Meat Loaf, left us Thursday at the age of 74. His best-know album, the bombastic “Bat Out Of Hell,” remains one of the best-selling releases of all time. Overall, the star sold 100 million albums worldwide and also appeared in movies like Fight Club, the Rocky Horror Picture Show and Wayne’s World.
He was also known for hits like “I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That)” and “Dead Ringer For Love.”
Fellow rocker Alice Cooper was among the thousands paying tribute, saying: “Meat Loaf was one of the greatest voices in rock ‘n’ roll, and he was certainly one of my closest friends in the business.
“There was nobody, and I mean nobody like Meat Loaf,” he added. “His shoes can never be filled.”
Theatre composer Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote: “The vaults of heaven will be ringing with rock. RIP Meatloaf.”
Meat Loaf was reportedly sick with Covid-19 during the week before his death. Last year, he said that even though he was “scared to death” of getting sick, he still hugged “people in the middle of Covid” and was OK with potentially dying of the disease. It was clear in an interview with The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette in August that the star had his fill of Covid regulations, saying he’d known for six months “the masks we’re all wearing are useless,” while adding that the only “good masks” are N95s.
The Dallas-born singer was born Marvin Lee Aday but also known as Michael, and got his nickname when his dad said he looked as red as meat at birth, before a high school football coach added the “loaf.”
“If Bruce Springsteen can take it over the top, Meat Loaf can take it five stories higher.”
That’s how Todd Rundgren, the producer of “Bat Out Of Hell,” described Meat Loaf’s bombastic, operatic voice. He was one of a kind, larger than life – living proof that those cliches can be true.
Born to a family of gospel singers, he got his break in musical theater, where he teamed up with Jim Steinman. Together, they spent four years making “Bat Out Of Hell.”
The session musicians thought it was a joke, and it was rejected by four record labels. But after two explosive TV performances – on the UK’s Old Grey Whistle Test and “Saturday Night Live” – it couldn’t be stopped.
Ellen Foley, who performed in the all-time duet “Paradise by the Dashboard Lights,” met him when the two were driving around in a blue van, touring with a National Lampoon comedy show (Meat Loaf a stand-in for John Belushi). She describes him as a man-child. “I’m not saying that derogatorily. But I think all the women in his life probably ended up sort of caring for him.”
“Bat Out of Hell,” a collaboration with songwriter Steinman and producer Rundgren, overcame mixed reviews to become, via aggressive touring, one of the top-selling albums in history, with worldwide sales of more than 43 million copies.
But the exhaustion from the tour and contractual problems meant Meat Loaf received no royalties from the album for years, eventually declaring bankruptcy. In one interview, he confessed he was so angered by the situation that he would pull copies of the CD off record store shelves and smash them under his feet to make sure no one else got paid, either.
“I think it was sold off of live performances,” Foley said of the 1977 album. “They toured the heck out of it and people saw him and were just blown away and bought the record.” And, of course, there was “the wonder of Meat Loaf,” she added. “He was a wonder, truly.”
“I mean, that’s the wild thing,” Foley said in an interview Friday, when asked to explain the source of his fame. “Who would have thought that at the end of the ‘70s, this 300-pound-plus guy would be a star? But that’s what it was. He was a character, you know, larger than life.”
But, she says, he came at the right time.
“People were ready for this. People were ready to come out of the laid-back Fleetwood Mac ‘70s. And he had an extraordinary voice. I don’t know if he ever took a voice lesson – I think he came out pretty fully formed. First time I ever saw him walk into a rehearsal hall, he was Meat Loaf. He knew what he was.”
As for their “Paradise” duet, Foley said, “It’s got an unbelievable mythology around it,” noting that people often tell her they lost their virginity to the song. “Which makes sense,” she added. “They were following the script.” [The song included baseball announcer Phil Rizzuto giving a play-by-play about rounding the bases and sliding into home. Rizzuto later said he didn’t realize it was metaphor.]
“Stop Right There!” Three words of warning – and three words that Ellen Foley credits with launching her career in music.
Foley wrote on Facebook this week: “Meat brought me into the consciousness of the rock ‘n’ roll world, and through ‘Paradise By the Dashboard Light,’ I get to be a horny teenager for all time. Meat: I will love you forever.”
Meat Loaf was one of the few big-name American entertainment figures to campaign for presidential candidate Mitt Romney in his race against Barack Obama in 2012. While Romney lost, he kept his friendship with the singer, who he described on Friday as “a man of gentle kindness, generous spirit and exceptional talent. …Like many who knew him, I will miss his friendship.”
Top 3 songs for the week 1/20/62: #1 “The Twist” (Chubby Checker) #2 “Peppermint Twist” (Joey Dee & the Starliters) #3 “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” (The Tokens)…and…#4 “Can’t Help Falling In Love” (Elvis Presley) #5 “I Know (You Don’t Love Me No More)” (Barbara George) #6 “Happy Birthday, Sweet Sixteen” (Neil Sedaka) #7 “Walk On By” (Leroy Van Dyke) #8 “Run To Him” (Bobby Vee) #9 “When I Fall In Love” (The Lettermen) #10 “Norman” (Sue Thompson…yes, the music world doesn’t know what’s coming down the pipe…D week…)
Winter Olympics Quiz Answers: 1) Most gold medals….Norway 132, U.S. 105, Germany 93. 2) Apolo Anton Ohno has the most individual medals for an American, 8, in short track speed skating. 3) The awesome Eric Heiden won five golds in Lake Placid in speed skating, and when you analyze it, at all the distances, it’s the single-most amazing performance in our lifetime, perhaps just a notch below anything Michael Phelps did, or maybe not. And Heiden is a medical doctor, orthopedic surgeon.
Eric Heiden for President, gosh darnit!
I’ll have an Add-On up top by noon, Wednesday. Hall of Fame results and reaction.