NHL coaches send messages the collective group and to individual players all the time. How those messages are interpreted will go a long way toward fostering the kind of environment the coach is striving for in order to get the most out of his team.
(SI.com) - The San Jose Sharks announced on Wednesday morning that they have signed free agent goaltender Antti Niemi to a one year contract. According to team policy, the dollar amount of the deal was not revealed.
Harry Kalas died shortly after the season began. His casket was placed at home plate in the Philadelphia ballpark. The Phillies have been wearing a patch with his initials all year. The insignia was purposely sewn just above the heart.
NFL broadcasters are, by and large, a conservative lot. Studio analysts often stay in the same gig for a number of years. Same goes with the top broadcast teams outside of the occasional roster tweak or two for a just-retired player or a recently unemployed big-name coach.
5. Will Courtney Lee be scarred for life? If we're talking about his last-second alley-oop layup that would have won Game 2 of the NBA Finals for Orlando, the answer is no. After he missed that shot, Lee -- a rookie from Western Kentucky -- stood at his locker and answered every question without taking offense.
1. Cam Ward, Hurricanes: Word of advice to the Bruins. If you want to advance past the 'Canes, get it done in six games or fewer. The reason? Cam Ward doesn't lose in Game 7. With tonight's dramatic win, Carolina's star of the series has captured the first three Game 7 starts in his career. He was at his best when the 'Canes were pressing for the equalizer in the third, leaving him to thwart half a dozen odd-man rushes including three-bell stops on Jamie Langenbrunner and John Madden.
It was bound to happen, a goaltending duel between two of the best netminders in the league, Carolina's Cam Ward and New Jersey's Martin Brodeur. And in this particular iteration, neither team was shooting blanks. With a combined 86 shots between -- each club hurled more than 40 at the opposition's net -- it was a wonder that the game ended in a 1-0 win (BOX | RECAP) for New Jersey Thursday night.
I learned the secret of John Madden's success in a little diner -- more like a Big Boy-type restaurant -- in Elko, Nev., just off Interstate 80 in the fall of 1990. Understand that Elko, like all of the middling towns in Nevada, I suppose, has a gambling operation. And in the back of this little place where the locals and just-passin'-through travelers were having dinner one Tuesday night in November, in walked Madden, the larger-than-life television voice of the National Football League.
I've written here several times over the years about Martin Brodeur without much considering the New Jersey Devils as a team. I'm probably not alone in that oversight, but with Brodeur sidelined since mid-November and the Devils a mere two points out of top spot in the Atlantic Division, it's time to admit it: I'm a Devils fan.
Quick guide on how to make instant friends -- rip any network announcers who annoy you. You'll always get support among your fellow viewers. Only exceptions were John Madden in the Summerall days, and Matt Millen. But I'm not going to lead the piece with this. It's too easy a fix. I'm going to introduce you to my Emailer of the Week, and I wish he had a last name because I'd certainly use it, but since he's a modest chap, he never dreamed that his little missive would reap such a gaudy harvest.
The first five days of the NHL playoffs saw me in four different cities covering one game in each Eastern Conference series for Versus. That unique opportunity allowed me to experience the packed-house atmosphere and get a feel for the mood in the various home team markets.
Here's an old rule of thumb I just made up: Never write a critical column about NFL announcers when you're in an ugly mood because every little annoyance will be magnified beyond reasonable proportions. Thus, as I spent the last two days going through the notes I meticulously made during the season, all the old resentments came back, the sneers, the head-banging frustrations, the wonderment at how we can stand still for the unbelievable barrage of crapola to which we've been subjected.
Last week SI writer Richard Deitsch interviewed Dennis Miller for the magazine's Q&A. The comic and former Monday Night Football analyst has a new sports show, Sports Unfiltered with Dennis Miller, which airs Tuesdays on Versus. Here are additional excerpts from their conversation:
It's time once again to sneak a peek at e-mails to and from sports figures. OK, these aren't actual intercepted messages; we're not running the NHL players union, people. But here's what we imagine that we're missing:
MARKETS: There you have it, in a nutshell, the whole trading year - all wrapped up in the first session of the year. Stocks started Tuesday strong, but ended up just a smidge: Dow up 11(actually the S&Ps fell a point plus) on concerns about the soft housing sector. Interestingly I was talking to one of the most famous hedge fund managers in the world (think Soros or Robertson, but not one of those two and I can't name him right yet), and he was saying that while the trend for U.S. stocks in his mind is up for 2007, he has this nagging underpinning of worry. He isn't sure what the bugbear is and that makes him uneasy. So it could be housing, but I say it's NEVER the 18-wheeler you see coming two miles away that kills you. It's something that sneaks up on you: from nat gas prices to Long Term Capital to (heaven help us), 9/11. On the other hand, it's a healthy rally that climbs a wall of worry. I'm concerned though, as is Lloyd Blankfein (CEO Of Goldman Sachs), that there just aren't any risk premiums o...
NBC finally may show some signs of life this year. That's because the athletic ability of 300-pound linemen will do for the network what a lousy "Friends" spinoff and Martha Stewart couldn't: give NBC a real hit.
In 1972, a crack commando unit was sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn't commit. These four men promptly escaped from a maximum-security stockade to the Los Angeles underground. Today, still wanted by the government, they survive as soldiers of fortune.
Bedside manner assumes a whole new meaning on ABC's doctor dramedy "Grey's Anatomy" -- what with interns babysitting severed penises, elevators doubling as boudoirs, syphilis running rampant among the staff, and the whole series opening with a crucial one-night stand.
Imagine a world without sportscasters, where fans tuning to games on television get the game get only the sounds from the stadium or arena and little else. No chatter. No promos for other programming on the network.