1. Quick Hits
- Boston marked the one year anniversary of the marathon bombings yesterday.
- The NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs begin tonight.
- The NBA regular season ends tonight.
- Let them eat cake. The NCAA votes to allow college athletes to eat unlimited meals and snacks. Last week, Connecticut’s star basketball player Shabazz Napier said he often went to bed hungry because he couldn’t afford food.
- Word is that Joe Buck and Greg Norman will be the primary announcers when FOX begins its U.S. Open golf coverage in 2015.
2. An Imperfect Storm
No surprise that the Masters had its worst rating in a decade. No Tiger, no Phil on the weekend. Maybe Jordan Spieth will drive the ratings some day, but not yet. And it didn’t help that there was no drama. The old saw about the Masters starting on the back 9 on Sunday was rubbish. For all intents and purposes Bubba Watson had it wrapped up as they made the turn. Pretty flowers and incessant piano music only go so far.
3. Woe Canada
So how’s that hockey religion coming along, eh? There are 7 teams that play in the NHL north of the border, and only one of them, Montreal made the playoffs. It’s the first time in 4 decades that only one Canadian team will vie for the Stanley Cup. Is there a reason? Perhaps, as usual, it’s all about money. All 7 Canadian teams rank in the bottom half of NHL payrolls. Maybe you really do get what you pay for.
So here’s the update from “Undie Sunday” at the Bakersfield Condors hockey game. Fans were asked to throw underwear on the ice (preferably new and still packaged) when the Condors scored their first goal. Since you wanted to know: From the Condors web site. “Nearly 6,000 clothing items were collected, including 1,096 pairs of socks, 2,773 pair of underwear, 1,747 diapers and 55 bras, among other items. The items will be donated to the Mission at Kern County and the Kern County Network for Children.” Nice.
5. Start Spreading the News
You know it, you love it you can’t live without it. Shouldn’t your friends and relatives be getting the Top 5 too? If you struck out in the NCAA and Masters contests here’s an even better chance to win autographed books and That’s Sports hats. Just send me the names of 3 new subscribers to the Top 5. That’s it. You’ll be entered in a drawing to win lots of prizes. The deadline is April 25th. Get cracking!
Happy Birthday: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. 67.
Bonus Birthday: Actor Jon Cryer. 49.
Today in Sports: Cleveland’s Bob Feller pitchers the only opening day no-hitter. 1940.
Bonus Event: Mickey Mantle is reinstated in baseball after being banned for his association with a casino. 1985.
Need a gift for that young sports fan in your life? Check out my books. And if you’d like a personally autographed copy contact the Dolphin Bookshop at 516-767-2650.