May 17, 2004
Smarty Jones:
Sports' biggest sensation (just check the TV ratings). Sure, lots of horses recently have won the first two Triple Crown legs, but Smarty's the real deal.
 
 
 
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:
FIGHTING.  SPIRIT.

Did you see the fight this weekend? What a hook!

Wait, did you think I was talking about Antonio Tarver's shocking 2nd-round KO of Roy Jones?

I'm talking about Anthony Peeler's left forearm shiver to the reigning NBA MVP's head. There's a two-part response to getting smacked in the face on national TV: (1) Don't retaliate, which would result in ejection; and (2) respond with your game.

Credit KG for not fighting back, but where was the 20-point, smack-this fourth quarter?

Garnett "responded" with all of four points in the fourth, limited to meek jump shots that made him no more of a threat to dominate than, say, teammate Fred Hoiberg.

What's that "P" in "MVP" stand for again? Push-over?

Lakers Rule
Game 7* (*  if necessary)"
The Lakers made this scheduling notation obsolete in their own series (four freakin' straight?!), but let's be honest:

Speaking of unnecessary, take Game 7 between the T'wolves and Kings. The way the Lakers are playing, neither of these teams can beat L.A. anyway. Why?

Perception: Having never been to a conference finals, the T'wolves think they can't beat the Lakers;

Reality: Having experienced it before, the Kings know they can't beat the Lakers.

Pistons Win Game 6
Now here is a Game 7 that's necessary: It would have been easier for the Nets to have won Game 6 at home and will take another huge effort to earn the winner-take-all KO. But the Nets will pull another road shocker ... in regulation this time.)

CHECK OUT THE QUICKIE EVERY WEEKDAY MORNING!
WHO'S GOT THE MOMENTUM ...
Brewers P Ben Sheets: Strikes out team-record 18 vs. Atl
Moneyball's "Greek God of Walks": Youkilis hits 2nd-AB HR
Buddy Rice: Earns the pole for the upcoming Indy 500
... AND WHO'S GOT NO MO'
Sammy Sosa: Sneezing himself into back injury? Seriously?
Tiger Woods: Weekend faltering at B. Nelson; Sergio wins
Jeter's Mendoza Watch (TM): After 0-4 Sunday, batting .195
 
Pacers Up 3-2
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Heat: Miami plays as woefully on the road (Game 5 on Saturday) as they play brilliantly at home (see Game 6 Tuesday). Bet the Pacers never thought they might go to a seventh game in this series; good thing it will be in Indiana.

Clemens Watch
How ironic that after dominating the Mets on Sunday (10 K, 0 R, 7 IP), Roger Clemens got to watch his lock-solid 8th win (in 8 starts) fly out of Minute Maid Park on the strength of a -- get this -- Mike Piazza game-tying HR off Octavio Dotel in the 9th.

Olympic Behavior
The U.S. Olympic Committee would like those athletes who have worked for a gold medal -- oh, say -- for their entire lives to accept it without emotion if they win.

Right: We would never want the rest of the world to see the unbridled joy that our country, when at its best, represents. Cheers, freedom of expression!

Meanwhile, speaking of distinctly American expressions: How appropriate that U.S. Olympic star Marion Jones sprinted to the front page today with testy threats of lawsuits if she's withheld from Athens for as-yet-unproven 'roid rumors.

More Smarty Jones
Ah, the life of a Philadelphia sports fan: NBA team stinks; baseball team underachieves; NFL team loses three straight years one step from the Super Bowl; NHL team about to do the same ...

... but it's a local horse, on the cusp of delivering the biggest title the city has seen since the '83 Sixers title team.

Roy Jones:
For my money, he's still the biggest badass athlete on the planet, but the argument is a LOT harder to make today than it was on Friday.
 
 
Today on ESPN.com
Page 2: Athlete stars with no hands
Fantasy: Buzz, tips, injuries
Boxing: Jones still an all-time great
 
Ranking Philly sports
Smarty Jones
Place to be: Phila. Park
 
Eagles
Getting TO was smarty, too
 
Flyers
But is anyone watching?
 
Phillies
Another year of "justmissed"
 
Sixers
Oh, just trade AI already
 

OK, apparently, home-ice advantage means NOTHING in the NHL; San Jose won again in Calgary to tie its series with the Flames 2-2 ...

Given that jumpshooting is an essential Olympic hoops skill, why isn't Rip Hamilton (game-high 24 pts) among the U.S. adds? ...

Turns out the Spurs could do everything at a championship level except shoot ...

Congrats to South Africa, the first African nation picked to host a World Cup (2010). Learn from Athens; start building now ...

Back to NBA scheduling-gap ridiculousness: MIN/SAC play Game 7 on Wednesday; NJ/DET play Game 7 on Thursday ...

Gwyneth Paltrow and Coldplay's Chris Martin named their new baby "Apple." I buy the theory that it's a salute to iPods ...



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