Bob Ryan

Roaming the sports world

Email|Print| Text size + By Bob Ryan
Globe Columnist / December 13, 2007

Emptying Out the Desk Drawer of the Sports Mind:

There will be howling from sea to shining sea if the Mitchell Report names lots of names and none of them is attached to the Red Sox, on whose masthead he has remained during the entire investigation.

The Brewers will pay Eric Gagné $10 million next year. Imagine what he'd have been worth had he actually gotten somebody out while he was here.

Yes, Bobby Petrino is the latest Atlanta Vick-tim. But the people in Arkansas should know that their new football mentor is about a 9.8 on the Slime-O-Meter.

It's not "if," it's "when" they will take away Reggie Bush's 2005 Heisman Trophy for that agent/family housing fiasco while he was at USC.

Me, I'd place the entire Philadelphia Flyers organization under what I'd call "Rink Arrest." They get unshackled from the leg irons only long enough to play a game.

Take the Jets with the points. They'll be maniacal. The weather is likely to be awful. And Coach Bill will change up and become Mr. Compassionate for a day. That's my call.

Best-case scenario: Johan Santana to the Mets. Or Angels. Yankees and Sox keep their precious kids and we all feel less like predators.

Meanwhile, if that rumor about Jacoby Ellsbury getting $125 per at an autograph session is true, this is the fastest known example of a seemingly good kid jumping the shark with his public.

When we have Patriots-Colts II Jan. 20, Rodney Harrison had better be healthy and ready to go; that's all I can say.

You know the Pistons have long had next Wednesday's game against our rampaging Celtics circled on their calendar. As Johnny Most would have said, this one will be a barn burner and a ding-donger. Also, a proper semester exam for our lads.

Bizarre he is; there's no doubt. But Phil Spector did give us "A Christmas Gift for You from Phil Spector," without question the greatest of all rock 'n' roll Christmas albums.

Yet I must admit there has never been a Christmas tune half as funny as Adam Sandler's immortal "The Hanukkah Song."

Wouldn't we all like to hear what Red Auerbach would be saying about this year's Celtics, not to mention Bill Walsh's take on the '07 Patriots?

Here's a hearty holiday get well to John Winkin, the greatest college baseball coach New England has ever known.

If Mr. Jacobs really cared about his Bruins, perhaps he wouldn't start them out with a six-game road trip every year. Where's Mark Cuban when you need him?

Light a candle for a Jim Rice/Larry Whiteside Hall of Fame parlay next July. This is Jim Ed's next-to-last chance.

If you've got a football fan in your life, you don't want to give him/her Charlie Pierce's Tom Brady bio "Moving the Chains" for Christmas. You need to.

Welcome to the SEC, where failed NFL coaches go to lie, er, die. Talkin' bout Nick Saban (Dolphins/Alabama), Steve Spurrier (Redskins/Florida/South Carolina), Rich Brooks (Rams/Kentucky), and Bobby Petrino (Falcons/Arkansas).

No more Dwight Freeney. Next to no Marvin Harrison. Lots of other key injuries. And the next whine you hear out of the Indianapolis Colts will be the first. You might as well get used to the idea that America will be rooting for them in the inevitable rematch.

Every time I see Celtics assistant coach Clifford Ray, I think of what Dave Cowens used to say about the man: "I love to play against him. He's rough, but not dirty."

Is there anyone, anywhere, more on top of his game right now than Philip Seymour Hoffman? As good as he is in "The Savages," he's absolutely chilling in "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead."

And speaking of being on top of one's game, I ask you to join me in mourning yet another major loss to daily print sports journalism with the news that the peerless Selena Roberts has left the Mother Ship (The New York Times to some) to join Sports Illustrated. The only good thing is that the rest of us all move up a notch.

Yes, that was Al Jefferson dropping 32 and 20 on the Suns last week. And, yes, that was BC great Craig Smith hitting Washington with 36 Tuesday night. Minnesota can't say we never gave them anything.

Whaddya think? Two-time Heisman runner-up Darren McFadden with that 49er pick? Or would you prefer the best available linebacker? I'm sure Messrs. Pioli and Belichick value your input.

No one can completely ruin "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" for me. But Sinatra, Streisand, and Garland's 1944 original get the gold, silver, and bronze.

With 234,000 single-game tickets being sold last weekend for 2008, I'm sure the Sox brass is wondering why they didn't jack up the prices even more.

I'm predicting that Michael Vick will be the anti-O.J. He will turn out to be a great American redemption story. The look on his face at the sentencing was, "Oh, my God. What have I done with my life?"

As for ol' No. 32, the only thing left for him is to land a consulting job with the Knicks.

Can anyone give me a reason Jon Lester won't win 15 next year?

Yes, I'm the cautious fellow who felt the Celtics would do well to make the playoffs. Right now, I'd have to say that looks doable.

Everyone has a guilty pleasure Christmas album. Mine is Leon Redbone's. (The Phil Spector album is a certified classic. That goes without saying.)

You think it ever enters Bob Kraft's mind that he owes it all to a. Mo Lewis and b. the stupid tuck rule?

Apropos of Santana: Don't forget that Erik Bedard was practically a Cy Young lock when he went down.

We all think that, surely, the Patriots will have to run sometime, but didn't Brady pass his way up and down the field in the Oakland Snow Game? And that was six years ago, before he actually knew what he was doing.

True or false: There is no in-between on eggnog. You either loathe it or dream of bathing in it. You can guess which way I'm leaning.

Tall, short, skinny, fat, 15 or 75, ask any African-American male whom he'd like to play him in the movie and the answer will always be Denzel Washington. No exceptions. White guys are usually split between Brad Pitt and, increasingly, Russell Crowe.

I was thinking George Clooney myself.

Bob Ryan is a Globe columnist. He can be reached at

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