June 25, 2003
Montreal's Brad Wilkerson:
Hit for the cycle in 6-4 win over Pirates. Less interesting than the French phrase for 'the cycle' -- 'Le Carrousel.'
 
 
 
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:
EXPANDED.  PLOT.

In hindsight, the ACC's invite to Miami and Virginia Tech makes sense; with seven votes necessary to expand and Duke/UNC "no" locks, swing-vote Virginia needed an incentive to say "yes." So in order to land the huge prize (Miami), the other schools took on some unwanted (though at least geographically relevant) dead weight.

Pop theory: Taking two is a Trojan horse. Once everyone comes to terms with an 11-team ACC (and Duke/UNC have little choice), how hard will it be to add a 12th in two or three years, to qualify for that all-important football title game?

Whither BC/'Cuse: While everyone is suing everyone in this thing, don't be surprised if the jilted pair doesn't get litigious on the ACC. Meanwhile, it should be quite the welcome wagon for them back in the Big East, which is likely going to turn around and go poach the best of C-USA.

NBA Draft
Rumor Mill: Dallas would send Mike Finley to the Bulls for Chicago's No. 7 pick (Mavs take French SG Michael Pietrus), Marcus Fizer, Donyell Marshall and a TBD player, according to report in Arlington Heights Daily Herald.

Bears' Sponsor
Here is the future of the NFL, NBA and MLB: "Bears football presented by Bank One." Save the outrage, because the only shocker is how long this took to happen; it's worked fabulously in NASCAR, the PGA and college bowls. Stop the presses: Sports teams are businesses!

"HEY, EMINEM, THROW SOME BLING THIS WAY" Edition
THE SET-UP: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TODAY
1 Bonds' 73rd HR ball auction: Live on SC, 6 p.m. ET
2 Wimbledon: Venus, Lindsay, Hantuchova, Roddick on tap
3 Reds at Cardinals: More tense NL Central intramurals
THE SIT-DOWN: RETIRE THESE CONVERSATION TOPICS
1 LeBron's split loyalty: Cavs/Nike (hey, both are paying)
2 Klitschko/Lewis II: Vitali's recovery time the snag here
3 Kidd to Mavs: Fun summer rumor fodder; not gonna happen
 
Juan Not Gone
The Rangers found a sucker (uh, taker) for Juan Gonzalez, but the way-former MVP nixed a deal to join the Expos ... for now. Montreal's GM is reportedly going to try to give Gonzalez the soft-sell today, but here's betting Juan ain't buying.

Wimbledon
Serena got a pleasant reception from English fans: But you wonder if they were just trying to show up the boorish French.

Meanwhile, the Brit tabs were focused on the "Battle of the Babes": Maria "$3.95 Per Minute" Sharapova easily (and noisily) bounced Ashley Harkleroad 6-2, 6-1.

Damn Yankees
Miramax wants to pull a 'Chicago' on 'Damn Yankees', turning the B'way show into a movie. Key roles to fill: The Devil (Jack Nicholson too cliché; how 'bout actor-of-moment Hugh Jackman?) and Lola (Catherine ZJ ages herself out; suggest sultry Jennifer Connelly).

Dodgers P Odalis Perez:
His questionable balk in last night's 2-1 loss to rival SF is less important than his questionable composure afterward (allowed HR to Marquis Grissom).
 
 
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Forget Halladay; hometown hero Esteban Loaiza (11th win last night, 1.99 ERA) for AL Comiskey All-Star starter! ...

Sammy Sosa's 520-foot cork-unaided blast last night should keep critics quiet ...

Georgia Tech 6-10 frosh Chris Bosh has expanded NBA Draft to a "Big 4," behind LeBron, Darko and Carmelo ...

Who wants to bet against old-is-new-again Titans backup QB Neil O'Donnell starting at least four games ...



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