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Short hops

Posted by Eric Wilbur, Boston.com Staff February 6, 2009 08:59 AM

A few items of note while wondering if the truck saw its shadow…

  • Last night was indeed a classic, but let’s not get crazy about what it means for either the Lakers or the Celtics. Good grief, Bill Plaschke makes it sound like Los Angeles slayed the fire-breathing dragon at the gates of Hades.

  • Completely unprofessional, yes, and NBC must be livid with the scroll that a local Detroit affiliate ran beneath former Lions GM Matt Millen every time he appeared in the network’s Super Bowl pregame show. But hilarious? Unquestionably.

    "Matt Millen was president of the Lions for the worst eight-year run in the history of the NFL . Knowing his history with the team, is there a credibility issue as he now serves as an analyst for NBC Sports? ..."

    Speaking of hilarious, doesn’t this just get you giddy for the start of the Jim Schwartz era?

  • If you’re expecting two first-round draft picks for Matt Cassel, you might want to stop holding your breath. As Tom Curran points out, it’s more likely some team will work out a more realistic deal with New England for the quarterback. Interesting to note that on Vikings blog, “The Daily Norseman,” 75 percent of those that voted determine that he’s too expensive for Minnesota to go after. It’s going to take a lot of convincing on the part of the Patriots to convince teams that Cassel didn’t simply thrive in the system with Randy Moss and Wes Welker. You don’t think “Daunte Culpepper” is going to be mentioned once or twice by other GMs?

  • Dueling photos have been making the rounds of the web this week, questioning whether Steelers wide receiver Santonio Holmes actually had both feet down when he made his game-winning catch against the Cardinals in last Sunday’s Super Bowl.

    Here’s one take:


    And the other:


    Whatever. What’s done is done. Personally, I was rooting for overtime, just to see how the NFL would defend its ridiculous extra frame rules when all the marbles were on the line.

  • “Live Nation, where fans come first.”

    Well, this fan was prepared to rocket his phone through the dining room bay window Saturday morning hearing this message 3,456 times in an attempt to secure Phish tickets for June’s Great Woods show, having nearly already pounded his laptop keyboard into submission with the continually breaking web site. In fact, it hasn’t been a banner period at all lately for ticket-buying, what with (another) Red Sox fiasco in our rear view mirror, then Bruce Springsteen’s sale on Monday, where Ticket Master seemingly directed fans to its secondary ticketing site (hey, with double the price!) seconds after his shows went on sale.

    This, of course, has led Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) to call for a Federal Trade Commission investigation into TicketMaster’s practices, which could conceivably (but doubtfully) open the door for an explanation as to exactly why all those Red Sox seats you spent six hours to get a few Saturdays back are readily available on Ace Tickets for prices far more than those face values the team froze for the upcoming season. Now we get news of a possible Ticketmaster-Live Nation merger, which is sort of like marrying Scott Boras and Bernie Madoff. Being a fan is just so damned fun these days, isn’t it?

    And you just have to love a $42.50 ticket coming out to $62 and change after an extra $20 in fees is tacked onto the face value. Thanks, Live Nation. Where I come first.

  • I can’t see anything but a thunderous ovation for Joe Thornton when he returns to the Garden Tuesday night.

  • Best Super Bowl ad: Miller High Life’s one-second spot.

  • Despite the dreadful single, “Get On Your Boots,” I heavily anticipate the new U2 album, which reportedly takes them back to the days of “Achtung Baby,” a needed shift for a band that seemed to be playing through the motions of sorts with their last release. That’s not to say there’s no concern for the effort.

    On that note, here is one sour reviewer’s take on the album, song-by-song. Let’s just say he’s not impressed, particularly with “Boots.”

    The first single, and oh, Escape Club – how wonderful you must be feeling at this moment! Ever since 'Wild, Wild West' vanished from the charts in 1988 you've been waiting for a sign that you were something more than just another one hit wonder, so hearing U2 re-write the song must warm the cockles of your heart. And Elvis Costello must be smiling too, humming 'Pump It Up' under his breath as he dials his lawyers and wonders what sort of settlement to demand.

    Add Billy Joel to the mix. I couldn’t stop thinking of “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” the first time I heard it. Then again, when they released “The Fly” as their first single off “Achtung” in 1991, it was heavily ignored by the public. These days, it’s hard to find a die-hard U2 fan who doesn’t consider that song in their Top 10.

    But the next person you speak to that truly digs “Boots,” will be the first I heard of.

  • Barry Bonds. Not guilty. Yeah, I can see that.

7 comments so far...
  1. That second photo isn't even the same player/game. The cleats are completely different.

    Posted by K February 6, 09 11:30 AM
  1. I own every U2 recording I've been able to get my hands on, and I don't rank "The Fly" in the top 10, or even the top 20. Heck, there are bootleg recordings of "I Will Follow" that I'd rank higher than "The Fly."

    That being said, I'm waiting for the album to be available before I buy and listen to the new single. I don't have high hopes.

    Posted by --D. February 6, 09 11:56 AM
  1. Interesting dueling pictures of the superbowl touchdown. Too bad they aren't the same pair of shoes. I first noticed the differences in background details before I saw that, in the top picture, Santonio Holmes' shoes have black accents, whereas the shoes in the bottom picure have white accents.

    Is it just me or is this really obvious?

    Posted by Matt N. February 6, 09 12:00 PM
  1. I was in the same boat on Saturday, trying to get Great Woods tickets. My wife was sleeping, but eventually woke up due to me getting louder and more irrated each time I had to tell the Live Nation computer lady to "FIND TICKETS!" as their website continued to freeze. I finally thought I got through, then listened to 10 minutes of hold music before I was disconnected. PHUN!

    Posted by Brandon M February 6, 09 12:33 PM
  1. I don't understand the furor over the overtime rules. Is it really so much to ask one team to stop the other from scoring on the opening drive? Teams are stopped more often than not on drives.

    Posted by J-Bone February 6, 09 02:00 PM
  1. I think the photos are showing the same event, but from different enough angles that certain details are distorted. The black detail on the bottom of Holmes' cleat does seem to disappear between the pictures, but the lighting from the second angle can be simply washing it out. If you look closely at the bottom picture you can see a grey blob on his left cleat that matches the black on his left cleat in the top picture.

    There are other clues as well... the shoe in the bottom right of the top picture is a pretty good match with the corresponding shoe in the bottom picture. Just to that person's right is a guy in a red-blue shirt kneeling, and his left foot can be seen in the bottom picture as well. The angles of Holme's feet are pretty close in both pictures. The third foot in the bottom pitcure is actually Fransisco's right foot from the top picture, which gives you an idea of how different the camera angles are.

    What I would question is whether these pictures are depicting exactly the same moment in time. Is the second picture actually a split second before or after the first one, and depicts just before or after Holmes' foot did hit the ground? I would need more evidence than this to make a conclusion one way or that other. Certainly choosing these two pictures is being highly selective.

    Posted by MarshallDog February 6, 09 03:22 PM
  1. Overtime in football is wrong. It's not that the team on defense is being asked too much to stop the other team from driving. It's that a field goal is allowed to be the deciding factor. Maybe that should be where the rule gets tweaked. For the team to win in ot, they must do it with a touchdown on the first drive. That should solve everything.

    Who wants a coin flip to decide a game? A kickoff could be returned to the 30. Then 40 yards and a field goal gives you a winner? That's not right.

    Posted by Nick Faldo February 9, 09 01:19 PM
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