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12 posts from July 2008

July 03, 2008

You. This blog. Two questions.

     Our humble little web log debuted Sept. 23, 2005, so we're coming up on our third anniversary as The Herald's only general-interest sports blog -- still a work in progress. I believe one of the keys to bloggery is to encourage and grow a sense of community, so in that spirit I offer two questions here:

     1. WHO ARE YOU? Tell me (and others in the bloggerhood) about yourself. Whether you are a valued regular who visits daily and adds comments often, a reader who maybe votes in polls but only occasionally comments, or even someone wandering by for the first time, I'm interested in your story. How old are you? What do you do? Where do you live? What is your passion in sports? Tell as much or as little as you'd like.

     2. WHAT ABOUT THIS BLOG? Tell me what you like, or what you don't (or both). What would you want to see more or less of? Is there something about the content or format you'd change? Consider this your open invitation to help shape what we do.

     My plan is to leave this post in the top slot for a few days, well into the holiday weekend, and respond to your comments and suggestion in a new post by early next week. Meantime, please participate. We get thousands of visitors most days, and poll votes come from all over the country and beyond. Let's see what a cross-section of you looks like.

July 02, 2008

Elton Brand to Heat? (with poll); miracle Marlins; Williams' whining & more

     The newest ration o' miscellania, all free, just for you...

     [Bulletin: Click on Cell Phone Popcorn to see something fairly interesting and -- if you have a cell phone on your ear a lot -- a bit scary. Unless it's a hoax, which some think it is. Anyway, this is the kind of thing sports writers look at during rain delays at Marlins games. Sad, right?].

Aaa1eltonb     THE ELTON POSSIBILITY: Pat Riley is said to be bargain-shopping in free agency this summer, but the possibility has unexpectedly arisen that Riley might be able to take one more shot at a player he has long coveted: Elton Brand, the Clippers forward (pictured). Brand surprised most on by opting out of the last year of his contract and becoming an unrestricted free agent as of Tuesday. A sign-and-trade involving Brand and Shawn Marion would work financially, and the Clippers would have an interest in Marion presuming they also lose Cory Maggette to free agency. This scenerio still would allow Miami to bargain-shop for a stopgap answer at point guard. Riley has been talking about saving money now for a big free-agent splash in 2010, but if you can get Brand now, get him. Right? Click here to read today's column by me on the Brand-Heat possibility. Then partake of The Daily Poll and tell us why you voted as you did.

     [Note: Congrats again. Because of you, this was our 23rd blog poll to blast past 1,000 votes inside of the first 24 hours. Keep 'em coming!]

Aaa1marlins_2      MIRACLE MARLINS: The Marlins' rain-delayed 4-2 win today (Wednesday) was the team's 24th come-from-behind W, tying for the NL lead. Add the eight walk-off wins among 12 in the final at-bat and we've got us an exciting team here, people. Was at the ballyard today (though not to columnize) and thank goodness for summer campers. The crowd was 23,624 but might have been around 5K if not for the sea of colorfully shirted camp kids. It was hilarious hearing the high-pitched squealing and screaming when the lightning flashed and the thunder banged, and seeing the kids herding for cover when it rained. It was like the beach scene in Jaws. Eleven straight road games now before the All-Star Break. Hope Marlins crowds pick up in the second half. And I'm not counting campers who are bussed in and admitted for next to nothing.

     WIMBLEDON'S SCHEDULING SCANDAL: OK maybe it's not quite a scandal; then again it merited an Aaa1wimbledon_2 outraged column (click here) in my paper today. Courtgate! It seems the Williams camp is upset because Serena and Venus were on Court 2 in yesterday's matches rather than being scheduled for Centre Court or Court 1 -- the "show courts." It was questionable scheduling, yeah, sort of goofy, but to me it's much ado about not a whole lot. Of course the Williamses' mother took offense anyway, though surprisingly (and blessedly) resisted playing the race card. I think the staid Big W in its scheduling does seem to favor Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal's matches over the women. But probably with justification. Thoughts?

      BONK!: Click here for a 6-second video of an errant basketball pass knocking a high-school cheerleader right on her duff. She's OK. That's why it's hilarious.

Aaa1madonna      MADONNA AND A-ROD A COUPLE!?: Ohmygod! OK! Magazine suggests just that. Click here for the latest gossip on Madonna and Alex Rodriguez possibly maybe perhaps being "more than just friends"! (Madonna, by the way, looking astonishingly good for a woman my age).

     GEORGE ORWELL WOULDN'T BE SURPRISED: Headlines You Never Thought You'd See, one in a series.

     OLYMPIC TRIALS (YAWN): Why is such a big deal made over Olympic trials in track, swimming and so forth? Bulletin: These are not the Olympics, they are just preliminaries. To me, getting all excited about Olympic trials is akin to going bonkers over spring baseball or exhibition football. Wake me when the real stuff starts in Bejing, eh?

Aaa1hindu      DEAR GREG...: ...your blog's OK, but would be much better if occasionally you would show a photo of a Hindu man with 16-foot-long hair. Thank you.   

     LIVE CHAT: Thanks to all who joined in on our live online chat this week. We do it every Monday from 1-2 p.m. Click here to join the chat live next week or to post questions early.

     Check back. Probably be adding more crap to this post later.