воскресенье, 30 сентября 2012 г.

USPTO Issues Trademark JOULE SPORT to Joules for Leather, Imitations Of Leather - US Fed News Service, Including US State News

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Nov. 10 -- Joules Limited LIMITED COMPANY UNITED KINGDOM, Leicestershire, United Kingdom, has been issued the trademark JOULE SPORT (Reg. No. 3705427; International Reg. No. 0962523) by the USPTO.

The trademark application (serial number 79053201) was filed on April 4, 2008 and was registered on Nov. 3.

суббота, 29 сентября 2012 г.

the big chill.(Sports) - The Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk, VA)



the associated press

AUGUSTA, Ga. - Break out the Day-Glo golf balls, hand-warmers and the winter rules.

Chilly temperatures and a brisk north wind made the Masters feel more like it was transplanted to Augusta, Maine. Spectators bundled up in their winter finest Saturday, and players dug out every last bit of clothing they had stashed in their golf bags. Henrik Stenson even teed off in a stocking cap - at 1 p.m., no less.

And he's Swedish.

'The only other time I remember the weather like this is when I'm here playing for Thanksgiving and Christmas,' said Charles Howell III, an Augusta native.

Temperatures at the Masters hovered around 50 degrees, with overnight lows expected to drop below 30. Add wind gusting to 25 mph and it felt like the low- to mid-40s .

That's a good 30 degrees below normal. It's not expected to be much better today , with a high near 57 and more wind.

So much for warm Southern hospitality.

'We looked out this morning and thought it was going to be beautiful,' said Simon Burgess, an Englishman by way of Portugal who was shivering in shorts and a light sweater. 'It's bloody freezing.'

The Masters is normally spring break for the golfing set - sun-splashed days that are warm, if not hot; a pleasant breeze that's the perfect complement to a pimento cheese sandwich.

Shirt-sleeves are the uniform for players, with maybe a light sweater vest for those trying to show a bit of style. Spectators wear shorts. The women come in skirts or show off their sundresses. While the golf is the main attraction, getting an early start on the year's tan doesn't hurt.

Rain can put a damper on things - the third round didn't finish until Sunday morning last year because of thunderstorms. But it's one thing to have muddy shoes, another to not be able to feel your feet.

'This seems like another tournament altogether,' said Rich Cheney of Rocky Mount, N.C., who was at his fourth Masters. 'Kind of British Open conditions.'

Players were layered in sweaters, wind shirts and jackets. There was even a mock turtleneck or two. The wind played havoc with almost every shot and made Augusta's already quick greens even slicker.

'Do I look like I'm out in my shorts and T-shirt?' Englishman Lee Westwood asked. 'When I got out of the house this morning, I said to (his agent), 'It's like walking out of the Old Course Hotel at the Dunhill Links.' It was that cold.'

For the spectators, the chilly conditions called for drastic measures.

Mike Misiak had on a T-shirt, turtleneck, sweater and a jacket. He wore black pants - 'to soak in the sun' - and tundra-worthy black gloves.

'This, I think, is a beautiful day,' Misiak said. 'My golfing weather is 40 degrees. I've golfed in snow 6 inches deep. I don't know what the temperature was, but probably below freezing.'

OK, but Misiak is from Tecumseh, Mich. He's a pro at this. Ditto for David Lewis, a high school golf teacher from Buffalo, N.Y., who was at his first Masters.

Lewis had shed his coat by midafternoon, though he did have on a sweater and turtleneck.

'I hang out at football games. I've been watching the Buffalo Bills for years,' Lewis said. 'I know better than to be cold. I can take stuff off. But if you don't have it, you don't have it.'

Which is why so many spectators looked as if they were wearing half the clothes in their closets.

More than a few people had on ear muffs and wool caps. One man had on a long, leather trench coat and a leather hat. A woman already wearing a sweater, heavy jacket, gloves and hat wrapped herself in a wool blanket.

One fan who had staked out a seat along the blustery No.7 fairway was hunched over, a hood over his head and his windshirt pulled up over that.

'Temperature-wise, it's not too bad,' said Cheney, who traded the shorts and golf shirt he normally wears to Augusta for thick corduroys, gloves, a shirt, sweater vest and windbreaker. 'But when you throw in the wind, it makes it really tough.'

At least the sun was shining. When the wind would die down briefly, it wasn't that bad. Not ideal, but tolerable.

For those who weren't prepared for the elements, though, the day was brutal.

Burgess shivered and chattered for 3 hours as he followed Westwood. As soon as Westwood was done, so was Burgess. He and a buddy headed for a restaurant to get some hot wings and warm up.

'I bought $700 worth of clothes yesterday, and they're all back at the house,' Burgess said. 'I should have brought it all out.'


David J. Phillip/the associated press

пятница, 28 сентября 2012 г.

The shopping basket sports car - for [pounds sterling]250; SCHOOLBOYS MAKE CLASSIC ROADSTERS FROM SCRAP. - Daily Mail (London)


QUESTION: What do you do with a rusty Ford Escort, a leather handbag from Oxfam and a shopping basket?

Answer (if you're a pupil at Oundle): Turn them into a classic wind-in-your-hair sports car costing just [pounds sterling]250.

The public school, founded in 1556, has started its own production line using cannibalised parts to make the DIY vehicles.

So far 32 of the `LoCost Sevens' have been built, all uncannily similar to the classic Lotus 7 designed by the late Colin Chapman - hero to the school's head of motor engineering, Ron Champion.

`We are one of the few truly Britsh motor manufacturers left,' Mr Champion said yesterday. `It's effectively fallen to one of Britain's top public schools to be a last bastions of the British motor car industry.'

Now Mr Champion, 52, has written a manual revealing the Northamptonshire school's engineering secrets. It will be released today by motoring publisher Haynes at [pounds sterling]14.99.

It advises would-be car makers to scour scrapyards for a Mark I or Mark II Ford Escort with a good engine, gearbox, back axle and tyres. Body condition is immaterial. The school says it has never paid more than [pounds sterling]75 for a whole car.

The manual then gives full details of how to strip the Escort and turn it into a shiny new sports car.

Top tips include making the radiator grille from a discarded wire shopping basket, using [pounds sterling]2.50 bath sealant to fix the windscreen and making old leather handbags and coats into trim for the dashboard and gear-stick surround.

Once the car is complete have it inspected by a vehicle licensing centre, fix on the number plates, insure, MOT and tax it - then head for the open road.

Oundle's motor industry connections run deep.

Former pupil Rudolph Stahl designed the first Chrysler, while Charles Amherst Villiers created Malcolm Campbell's land speed record-breaking Bluebird and later designed the landing craft for Nasa's Mars exploration.

четверг, 27 сентября 2012 г.


Score one more for business casual.

Because of dress-down everyday, everywhere, the topcoat industry has morphed into a new total coat business that designer Joseph Abboud simply calls 'overwear.' This is for the many who snapped up something casual, comfortable and warm this fall to wear over a sport coat or sweater for work. They made shortie coats a smash.

Naturally, everybody wants a piece of the action. Wool dress coat specialists are doing their versions of short outerwear, rainwear and leather. At the same time, outerwear and rainwear companies are both into short, dressy wools, technos and leathers, and the early blast of cold weather made them all hot performers at retail.

And this is where the biggest changes are happening.

Kent Gushner, vice-president, tailored clothing, Boyds, Philadelphia, says, 'Today the line between outerwear and overcoats has blurred because of the dress-down movement. Obviously the guy who wore a suit to work bought the dressier wool overcoat; today he's buying sportswear because he needs an outerwear-type coat. Whether it's wool, nylon, techno, shearling or leather, they're all fighting each other. It's no longer an exclusive wool business.

'What used to be four or five classifications is now one with subsets and they're all performing well.'

But he points out that this has produced major changes in the marketplace with a much smaller number of specialists and more collection lines out of Europe now making coats. The retailer claims this has changed buying patterns 'and the new mentality is that the average store is selling the names in the coats, so companies like Zegna, Canali, Hugo Boss and Burberry are all benefiting.'

Stephen Saft, CEO, Jacob Siegel & Co., a survivor in a tough dress coat market with the license for such designers as Lauren by Ralph Lauren, Jones New York and Bill Blass, among many, reports reorder business in the past two weeks has been 'spectacular after a good season. But the business is very different. Short coats, from 34 to 42 inches, are very strong and they're now 40 percent of our business. But the big surprise has been long 46- and 47-inch coats -- they're much stronger than we expected.'

Siegel, like other key makers, is no longer putting all its bucks into traditional wools. The company is doing water-repellent versions for all-weather coats and included is a reversible in wool to bonded polyester microfiber.

Picking up on the length story, Ian Selig, president, Mario Valente, which manufactures Burberry wool coats, says, 'There's no such thing as a coat company any longer. We have to provide a collection from blousons all the way down to 49-inch coats. Actually, it took several years for the original giaccone, or 36-inch Italian carcoat, to take off in this country. Now it's the casual model, while the 44-inch is the dressy coat.

'In fact, 40- to 44-inch coats are replacing the longer, 49-inch dressy coat. Shorter lengths are about 65 percent of our business.'

He also contends that the fabric assortment is just as broad and adds, 'We're not just in wools, but we now offer cottons, leathers, technos and Teflon finishes for all-weather coats. As far as our business, 36- to 40-inch wools are still our best items, and next year wool will be stronger than ever because stores haven't bought wools for the last year three years.

'Everybody went into this fall very cautiously and now they're buying as needed. We expect them to end this season clean.'

More on the state of the business from Carlo Quintiliani, president, Cardinal USA, who says reorders followed the cold weather East, starting in the Rocky Mountain states, then hitting the Midwest and finally the East Coast. 'What's happening is that the short coat has become a steady business. Both the 38- to 45-inch lengths were 60 percent of our initial bookings and the shorter length itself was a third of the business. It will end up at about a quarter of the season.'

He expects a repeat next season in a much broader range of fabrics to include more luxury as well as techno fabrics.

'It takes a little cold weather and the coat business is flying,' says an enthusiastic Joe Gordon, corporate senior vice-president, George Weintraub & Son. 'For a manufacturer like us with three different businesses -- suits, sport coats and topcoats, the mix we now have will help make up the shortfall we're finding in suits.'

Noting that 100 percent cashmere is 'on fire' in short and long coats, he says, 'We're not selling the wools we sold five years ago. There are many new blends, also techno fabrics, like bonded polyester microfibers, microfiber suedes, etc. These fabrics have put us into the outerwear business and we're also into leathers and suedes. We're in the total coat business and this includes raincoats.'

Robert Vignola, executive vice-president, wholesale, Burberry USA, says, 'Because of the new slimmer silhouette and shorter lengths, rainwear is now sportswear, especially in techno fabrics. The biggest development for us next fall will be the great expansion of our leathers and suedes as part of our growing made-in-ltaly London sportswear collection.'

Meanwhile, raincoat specialist Harvey Arfa, president of Gruner & Co., says the definition of his company has changed dramatically. 'Over the past year, short coats with more sporty details and special fashion features have gone through the roof. We once made two basic rainwear styles in one fabric and two colors.

'Today we have 35 fabrics ranging from cotton twill to high-tech bonded fabrics, wools and leathers. Our wool program has quadrupled and our new leather line looks very promising. And if this isn't enough, we add 15 new models every season to our DKNY line and the same number for Chaps.'

Barry Denn, chief creative director, Newport Harbor, says, 'Today you have to ask whether it's a topcoat, raincoat or outerwear. Rainwear has become outerwear and outerwear has become sportswear. That's where the market is. And to me, the fabric makes all the difference because there's a crossover. We have to provide a collection from blousons all the way down to 49-inch coats.

'And they're interchangeable. We're putting outerwear and topcoat fabrics into rainwear and vice versa. How about a rain blazer in water-repellent wool? Or a barn coat in a microfiber blend that's also a raincoat? Or a 40-inch Amaretta sueded bonded microfiber polyester topcoat?'

As far as Ralph DiBenedetto, executive vice-president, Crown Clothing, is concerned. 'Anything goes today when you're talking lengths, from 34-inch giaccones to cover a sport coat down to 45- and 48-inch coats. Now the 34-inch outerwear coat is sportswear and the 36-inch length in a water-repellent nylon is rainwear.'

Like many in the market, he feels the real challenge will be to give this growing mix of coats the right retail real estate. 'Does it belong in sportswear or in the clothing department? Most department stores are putting these coats between clothing and sportswear because clothing buyers are now treating them as a new all-inclusive classification that can stand on its own.'

Adds Saft at Jacob Siegel, 'For the most part, the tailored clothing buyer buys topcoats and rainwear, and then there's the combined sportswear and outerwear buyer. As the lines between the three get grayer, it will make sense for the store to have one buyer rather than several competing for the same customer.

среда, 26 сентября 2012 г.

Leather bombers fly out of stores. (sales of leather bomber jackets) - Daily News Record

NEW YORK -- Call it the comeback kid.

Despite all the confusion and predictions of doom and gloom -- and there's a lot of it out there in outerwear departments -- the leather bomber jacket has people talking again. And reordering. It even has some in a quandary.

'We are a fashion store, so I didn't want to buy the basic bomber at all this season,' said Ben Bublick, co-owner of and buyer for the family-owned The Hang Up Shoppes and The Man Alive, with 24 stores in Michigan.

'But some customers, apparently, still consider it fashion. It's been the real surprise this year. You just can't kill it,' said Bublick.

Many had predicted the demise of the bomber last year with the exception of discount stores, who had good runs with bombers last year. But the trend at discount stores has only pickep up steam this year. And, perhaps unexpectedly, this promotional style, along with zip-outs and toggle coats, is helping other retailers to put some shaky outerwear business on a firmer foundation.

Though generally not the rule, some stores have gone back into the market to look for reorders to bombers. 'We've been chasing around for the last month or so to try to get more bombers in,' said Tom Tomechko, outerwear buyer for Carlisle's, an 11-store chain based in Ashtabula, Ohio. 'That commodity is basically driving our business.'

Vendors claim they are already getting some '92 orders for bombers, and several said they had placed some quarter-million-dollar orders for bomber leathers last week.

Still, the outerwear market is on a consumer spending roller coaster. Two weeks ago, the weather was cold, and promotions worked well to loosen pockets. But last week, the weather warmed up again, and consumers stayed home, said retailers.

'You always feel that somehow, once the weather really turns cold, people will rush out to buy coats,' said Janet Franklin, a buyer for S & K Famous Brands, a 120-unit chain based in Richmond, Va.

Franklin said leather bombers had begun to do well, but that there were no clear indications to necessitate reorders at this point.

'With the new three-quarter-length jackets we have, I thought business would be better, but outerwear is still a major purchase, and I don't know if people are willing to spend that much. They are making do with last year's coats.'

Aside from leather, there are bright spots. S & K has also done well with wool bombers and lightweight outerwear and three-in-one jackets.

J.C. Penney, too, has begun to see some pockets of business. 'Sales have generally picked up over the past few weeks,' said Jeff Coate, outerwear buyer.

'We got a cold streak, and that pushed out business from some big losses to some small gains. Down parkas have started selling, zip-out basics have done well and wool has performed better, although that's still only a small percentage of the total,' said Coate.

'It's still a tough business, but at least I'm encouraged. If this trend continues, we should go from potential disaster to an okay year.'

Best sellers for other retailers include longer-length down-filled coats and anything in leather with a sports logo, said retailers.

And one store reported improved sales with a new type of outerwear -- the heavy sport jacket.

'We put money into sweater coats and blazers, and that added an additional boost to our outerwear department. We started off the season with these and added the coats later,' said Pat Scaccia, outerwear buyer at Bigsby & Kruthers. 'Short wool blousons have been doing well, and 3/4 lengths are good.

вторник, 25 сентября 2012 г.


Three years ago, Reggie White was trying to decide what to do with the rest of his NFL life.

The Hall of Fame-bound defensive end was the crown jewel of the league's first true free-agency class and was being courted by nearly a dozen teams.

Owners wined and dined him. They flew him around on their private planes. One gave his wife a leather coat. They promised to make him rich beyond his wildest dreams.

But White insisted his decision wouldn't just be about money. The ordained Baptist minister, then 31, said he wanted to go someplace where he could win a Super Bowl. And he said he wanted to go someplace where he could serve the inner city.

He told us God ultimately would tell him where he was supposed to go. But when it turned out to be nearly all-white Green Bay, more than 90 miles from the nearest inner city, and a football team that had made just one playoff appearance in the last 25 years, well, it seemed as if White's wallet had spoken to him a lot louder than God.

The four-year, $17 million marriage with the Packers was greeted with heaping amounts of skepticism. But three years later, we are finding out that God works in very mysterious ways.

Since White's arrival, the Packers have earned three straight playoff invitations and are being picked by many preseason publications to make it to the Super Bowl this year.

Maybe even more remarkable than the Packers' turnaround has been the unique relationship that has developed between White and the people of Green Bay.

This predominantly white community has opened up its heart to this black man of God. When he speaks, they listen. And the subject seldom is football. He gets daily requests to preach. Not just in Green Bay's churches. But in its schools and in front of its civic organizations.

They have opened their wallet to him, too. When White's Inner City Church in Knoxville, Tenn., burned down earlier this year, Green Bay residents contributed more than $150,000 to help with the rebuilding.

``I've never been affected by a whole city and a whole state of people like I've been affected by the people of Green Bay and Wisconsin,'' said White, who broke down and wept at the news conference to announce the contributions.

``When I signed with the Packers, I didn't know what it was going to be like here. I didn't know exactly why I was here or what was going to happen here. Preaching up here . . . sometimes people don't want you preaching in schools. Organizations don't invite you because they know you're going to preach.

``Yet up here, non-Christian organizations have invited me to preach. They've invited me to go into schools and share my heart. And they're not offended by it.

``To me, it's like God said, `OK, Reggie. I'm going to send you to Green Bay. The reason I'm going to send you to Green Bay is because the people there are going to respond to you unlike anybody else ever will. They're going to respond to your vision. They're going to respond to the things that you say. They're not going to be sarcastic about it. They're going to believe what you say.' These people have touched me and (his wife) Sara. We feel like this is our home. We feel like this is our state. I feel like I've been treated better here than anywhere I've ever been.

``That's not meant to disparage the people of Philadelphia. When I got ready to leave there, thousands of people stood out in JFK Plaza and asked me to stay. But I've never felt that a whole state of people care about me like they do here.

``We love these people. And we're going to do things soon to show them how much we appreciate what they've done and the love they've shown.''

One thing White would like to do for them soon is win a Super Bowl. The Packers came close a year ago, winning the NFC Central Division title and making it to the NFC Championship Game before they were derailed by the Dallas Cowboys.

``This is the best chance we've had since I've been here,'' White said. ``Maybe it'll be the best chance we'll have for a while, I don't know.

``We did some things to help ourselves during the off-season. Now, it's just a matter of us just going and doing what we need to do. If (quarterback) Brett (Favre) plays the way he played last year (league most valuable player) and our defense is more consistent than it was last year, I think we'll win it all.''

White spent much of the off-season flying around the country trying to raise money to help rebuild the Inner City Church and the more than 50 other predominantly black churches in the South that have been destroyed by arson fires in the last two years.

Before the ICC fire, little national attention was paid to the church burnings. But White has changed that. He got the National Council of Churches involved. He accompanied national black leaders to Washington when they met with Attorney General Janet Reno about the fires.

He has appeared on talk shows to discuss the church fires and make appeals for contributions. He has tapped the NFL and its players. Through the NFL Players Association, he has asked his fellow players to contribute their dues rebate checks, which are about $5,000, to a fund to help rebuild the churches.

``Through NFL charities, the league gave $25,000,'' he said. ``I'm going to write the commissioner a letter soon about donating some more for some other churches. We probably won't start getting the money from most of the players until we start the season. But a lot of them are already coming to the plate. Brett already has given his $5,000. (White's friend and former Eagles teammate) Eric Allen gave his $5,000.''

Before the Olympics started, all of the members of the Dream Team agreed to donate the $15,000 they each would receive for winning the gold medal.

White wishes more prominent athletes and entertainers would help him raise money.

``I wish more would stand up and help,'' he said. ``The Dream Team has made a step toward that. But I wish more guys would be a voice, more people in leadership, both black and white, would be a voice for this cause.

``I need them to help come to the rescue now. I'm not going to be able to be as much of a voice now as I was during the off-season. I'm afraid that with me backing out because of the season, that things are going to slow down and it'll be another situation where America forgets. That's why I'm hoping that somebody can come and carry it on for me.''

Does he have anybody specific in mind?

``Somebody asked me if there was anybody I could think of in any profession that could be a voice, who would that be,'' White said. ``My first reaction was Charles Barkley. Charles will say what's on his mind. I talked to Charles before he left for the Olympics and was sharing a little bit of what was going on. I hope to talk with him about it more in the next few weeks.''

White's ability to galvanize support for rebuilding the churches has made it more apparent than ever that God's post-football plans for him likely will go beyond a local ministry.

There has been a void in black leadership since the death of Martin Luther King and many think White will be the man to eventually fill it.

Evangelist R.V. Brown has predicted White will become ``the black Billy Graham.''

``He is emerging as a national (black) voice,'' the Rev. Mac Charles Jones, of the National Council of Churches, recently told The Sporting News. ``He has the opportunity in the days to come to offer some bold leadership.''

Said White: ``To make a difference, you've got to be out in the forefront. I think God has thrust me in the forefront. He's spoken to me about what he wants me to do.

``I'm not interested in being a prominent figure for the purpose of being well-known. I'm more interested in seeing what I can do to help people, both black and white.

``My heart and my concerns are for people. I'm not interested in fighting other people's agendas. In some ways, I'm getting caught up in other people's loops, other people's mistakes. Because other people think I'm coming and trying to take something away from them.

``The only agenda I have is winning people to the kingdom and seeing people's lives change for Jesus.''

At 34, White isn't quite ready to put football in his rear-view mirror yet. He is entering the final year of his four-year contract, but hopes to sign a three-year extension sometime this month.

Despite his advancing age, he sees no reason that he shouldn't be able to match or surpass his 12 1/2 -sack total of last season.


Byline: PAUL FARHI Washington Post

The demise of the XFL will undoubtedly be hailed by some as a small victory against the lapping tide of vulgarity. This was, after all, supposed to be professional football dressed up as coochie show, engineered to touch the inner mook in every male over the age of 12. Columnist George Will dourly predicted, back in January, that the much-hyped league presaged ``a further coarsening of the culture.''

But the failure of the XFL teaches the opposite lesson: It wasn't sleazy enough.

League founder Vince McMahon, who made a fortune shredding the envelope of good taste, promised that the new league would offer copious bad behavior and general rudeness. Certainly, McMahon's instincts for pandering to the overheated passions of 14-year-old boys -- effectively, the XFL's core viewer -- were not in question. He had perfected the formula at the World Wrestling Federation, whose oiled behemoths and scantily clad amazons were the natural analogues of the XFL's running backs and cheerleaders.

So McMahon promised gladiatorial spectacle. He promised babe-gawking. He called the NFL an ``over-regulated, antiseptic league'' populated by a bunch of ``pantywaists.'' The XFL, he declared, would be different: ``When the quarterback fumbles or the wideout drops a pass, and we know who he's dating, I want our reporters right back in her face on the sidelines demanding to know whether the two of them did the wild thing last night.''

If polite opinion was outraged, so much the better. In marketing, this is known as ``segmentation,'' zeroing in on your potential customers by driving off everyone else.

In practice, however, the XFL never was able to shoot low enough. There were no soap-opera story lines, no off-field intrigues. During sideline interviews, the XFL's players had little of interest to say. (``It felt good. It felt real good,'' was as much insight as most players could muster.) The ``all-access'' cameras in the teams' locker rooms -- an interesting innovation, in theory -- proved rather dull as well.

The players and coaches, serious professionals all, eventually seemed to resent McMahon and NBC's belabored efforts to transform them into ``characters.'' The most interesting and honest of these sideline encounters occurred in the third week of the season when Rusty Tillman, a former NFL assistant coach turned XFL head coach, wheeled on a pesky cameraman and barked, ``Get outta my face!''

As for the cheerleaders, they quickly became irrelevant. Blame it on the leather trench coats. Even McMahon wasn't cruel enough to make his writhing babes strip to their hot pants and push-up bras in the dead of February in Chicago. Even revealed in all their glory, they weren't showing anything the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders haven't for 20 years.

With all the attitude and peripheral embroidery a weak imitation of professional wrestling, the XFL was stuck with being a football league. And a surprisingly plodding football league at that.

Despite incessantly promoting its own violence -- Jesse Ventura, the moonlighting Minnesota governor who served as an XFL color commentator, was especially eager to do so -- the bone-breaking quotient of XFL games proved a good deal less than the NFL's. It actually had to be -- the XFL's players were smaller and slower than the NFL's, and by definition weren't athletic enough (or maniacal enough) to make an NFL team.

The XFL's announcers (Ventura again) tried to mask this by stressing the league's quirky rules, such as a prohibition on fair catches. What they didn't mention as often is that these rules actually worked against excessive contact. The ``no fair catch'' rule promoted long runbacks instead of disabling tackles because the kicking team was required to give the punt returner a 5-yard ``halo'' in which to field the ball. Similarly, the XFL allowed pass defenders to ``bump'' the receiver in the open field -- until McMahon and NBC realized that this all but eliminated the kind of offensive fireworks that football fans love.

понедельник, 24 сентября 2012 г.

Turin landmark makes moviegoing an extreme sport - Chicago Sun-Times

TURIN, Italy -- Inside the Mole Antonelliana, the city's biggestlandmark, the Museo Nazionale del Cinema offers one bizarreexperience after another.

Watch David Lynch's 'Eraserhead' from a toilet seat. Stare up atromantic classics such as 'Dr. Zhivago' -- or the treacly 'LoveStory' -- while reclined on a red chaise.

Included in the price of admission (about $10) is the chance tostar in 'The Matrix,' smack in the middle of Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss as they do that very smooth, slow-motion, too-cool-for-words strut.

Granted, it's not Olympic downhill, but while the Winter Games aregoing on across this northwest city and in the Alps behind it, thereare plenty of tourists looking for a little non-sports culture.

The National Cinema Museum leaves patrons awe-struck over itsgorgeous architecture, luminous lighting and six floors ofhistorical, visual innovations from shadow puppets to Sophia Loren.

The entire experience is a bit like lying on your couch andfinding yourself plopped into the middle of a Federico Fellini movie.

He's here, too. Laminated copies of scripts from his movies occupyone exhibit. Photographs of Fellini taken on various sets areseemingly everywhere. There is an entire shelf of videos for sale inthe gift shop, from Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg in 'LaDolce Vita,' to '8oe,' with the aforementioned Italian leading manand French co-star Anouk Aimee.

In the museum, there are more than 9,000 artifacts -- anappropriately impressive collection for a city that is the birthplaceof Italian moviemaking. But a lot more fun than simply looking atthings are the interactive shows.

Like being able to walk into 'The Matrix,' thanks to a videocamera that superimposes your image onto a movie screen, where it isflanked by Neo and Trinity in all their black-shades-and-black-leather-duster-coats glory.

On a recent afternoon, a young Italian man donned sunglasses, benthis knees, wiggled his hips and tried to mimic Reeves.

His girlfriend doubled over with laughter, then dutifully held upa cell phone camera to take his photo.

Up next were two young French boys whose heads barely reached theknees of Moss and Reeves. The children scrunched their faces, squaredtheir shoulders and did their best to seem tough. Then they collapsedin a giggling heap.

There's also a lot of memorabilia, including props, film camerasand an ample black bustier worn by Marilyn Monroe in several films,next to a Mexican-silver-and-abalone bracelet inscribed 'To Marilyn.Love, Frank.'

Frank who? Visitors aren't told.

The headscarf and flowing muslin caftan worn by Peter O'Toole in'Lawrence of Arabia' (1962) is mounted behind glass, with a quotefrom the actor on its comfort: 'I practically turned into atransvestite! I thought I'd end up running around in a nightie forthe rest of my days!'

Particularly striking is the 'Bombetta di Charles Chaplin,' ablack felt bowler with a frayed satin headband that came from actressGloria Swanson, who claimed that the diminutive genius gave it to herhimself.

At 549 feet, the Mole Antonelliana is Europe's tallest brick-and-iron building. Inside is a central courtyard with five mezzaninesringed by solid wood banisters. Sounds bounce from points along thevaulted walls -- the unmistakable nasality of Woody Allen's voice;the clacking of a screenwriter's typewriter; Orson Welles whispering'Rosebud.'

A succession of video monitors display scenes from some of thebest-known films in movie history.

On one, Vivien Leigh's Scarlett O'Hara flounces up Tara's grandstaircase while Clark Gable's Rhett Butler stares without shame atthe backside of her hoop skirt; on another, Humphrey Bogart tells animpossibly beautiful and dewy-eyed Ingrid Bergman that their littleproblems don't add up to a hill of beans in German-occupiedCasablanca. Besides, they always will have Paris.

Mole Antonelliana -- literally, Antonelli's Vast Structure -- wascommissioned in 1862 by Jewish scholars as a synagogue. ArchitectAllessandro Antonelli proposed a very big and very extravagant, houseof worship. Six years later, with the structure not even half-done,he ran out of money. Ten years after that, he finally persuaded cityelders to let him finish.

By then, it was well on its way to becoming a white elephant, anduncertainty abounded about the building's stability because of thearchitect's reputation for eccentricity and cutting corners.

For most of the 1900s, it was ignored. In 2000, after a massiverenovation, the cinema museum, the only one of its kind in Italy,moved in.

Its new home is breathtaking. A glass elevator pierces theinternal courtyard. Sleek, black pulleys raise it to the rafters,then gently drop it back.

Another glass lift takes visitors all the way to the top of thedome's spire, which affords a 360-degree view of the city and thestunning Alps that backdrop it.

Lavinia Farnesi is a volunteer with the International OlympicCommittee and attends college in Milan. Her college friend, SalvatoreVinci, also is a volunteer and she has accompanied him to the museumbecause he wants, more than anything, to be a film director. LikeFellini.

'For me, cinema is everything. Inventing stories is ...'

He wrings his hands, struggling to find the perfect description.He settles on 'wonderful.'

How do they like the museum?

'Very, very nice,' he says.

How about the toilets?

Long pause.

воскресенье, 23 сентября 2012 г.


Byline: Howard Beck Staff Writer

MINNEAPOLIS - Kobe Bryant tucked his Afro under a ski hat, pulled on a heavy leather coat, directed his eyes straight ahead and departed briskly from the visitors locker room at Target Center on Wednesday, leaving reporters' probing questions unanswered.

It was the least resistance Bryant saw all night, the only time he moved from Point A to Point B without running into a wall.

And as for those pesky inquiries about the Lakers' flagging fortunes, well, no one seems to have those answers anyway.

``Don't have much to say, man,'' Bryant said as he walked away. ``We stunk it up.''

And with that, he was gone. Just as quickly as the Lakers' optimism and their hopes for a winning road trip.

A 96-83 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves left the Lakers with a 1-2 record on this Shaq-less trip. They return home today more depressed than when they left, with fewer healthy bodies and with a record (28-16) that includes one more loss than the Lakers had all last season.

Shaquille O'Neal missed his third consecutive game because of a sore foot. A sudden knee ailment took out Horace Grant before tipoff. Bryant kept playing through his mosaic of injuries, and no one could be blamed for not trying hard.

But no amount of aggression and hustle could save the Lakers from another costly setback.

``We don't know how to win without Shaq,'' Lakers forward Robert Horry said. ``We only won, what, one game without him? You can't substitute for Shaq. He's a big presence in there and no matter what happens, we need to hope that he gets well soon.''

Bryant came up with just 24 points on 6-for-17 shooting. Mark Madsen's career-high 15 points looked nice, but also stood as an indictment of how little anyone else did: The rookie with limited offensive skills outscored all his veteran teammates.

The Lakers shot just 39 percent and scored 18 points below their season average.

Minnesota dominated the paint and the second-chance points and extended its winning streak to a franchise-record eight games, while snapping its losing streak to the Lakers at seven games.

``You've got to take advantage of them not having their superstar. You don't have any sympathy in this league,'' the Timberwolves' Terrell Brandon said.

The Lakers are just 2-3 in games without O'Neal this season. They finished January with a 6-6 record, the first non-winning month since going 6-6 in February 1997.

``I think that the thing that we need to learn is, we have to play as a team and we need to use guys the way they know how to play,'' Lakers guard Ron Harper said. ``And we've got to find guys shots and we have to hit shots, too. We have to go out and just play. I think we played hard. The last two games, I think our team has played harder. That's encouraging.''

This game was lost in the first quarter, when the Lakers faced a 10-point deficit. They played the Wolves to a virtual draw in the final three quarters but never got closer than 8 points in the second half.

Bryant, still hampered by a sore right shoulder, tried replicating his 47-point, attack-the-basket effort of the night before. But the Wolves were quick to cut off the lanes, and Bryant missed nine consecutive shots during one stretch. He was blocked three times, twice by Kevin Garnett.

``He went a little bit too hard in the first half and he got himself in jeopardy,'' coach Phil Jackson said. ``And I thought he was much better in the second half, moving the ball and eventually when he did try to go, they were prepared.''

The Lakers' other four starters combined for just 20 points and, although the Lakers equaled the Wolves in rebounding, they clearly missed the defense of O'Neal and Grant, their two most physical big men.

``That wasn't the actual game,'' Jackson said. ``Obviously, we miss Shaq and Horace . . . but we really didn't shoot the ball very well, we didn't take care of the basketball well, we didn't protect fast-break points. . . .

``The big picture is, come April 19, when you start the playoffs, is the big picture. We're just getting ourselves through the season right now, hopefully go into that period of time with our guys all intact and playing good basketball.''



Photo: (color) Lakers guard Tyronn Lue (10) pursues T'wolves' Terrell Brandon.

суббота, 22 сентября 2012 г.

Anthony thrilled to be back fans share feeling Excited forward gets loud reception as he gets back on court.(Sports) - Rocky Mountain News (Denver, CO)

Byline: Aaron J. Lopez, Rocky Mountain News

When the alarm clock went off Monday, Carmelo Anthony had an extra bounce in his step as he climbed out of bed.

His game-day routine was back to normal.

Wake-up at 8:45, a quick egg-and-bacon sandwich for breakfast and out the door for the Nuggets' morning shootaround.

Greeted by clear, blue skies in the wake of Denver's latest round of snow, Anthony enjoyed the short commute to the Pepsi Center as his older brother Justice shuttled him to work.

Fresh air, fresh start.

'This is like the beginning of the season,' he said.

As Anthony returned from a 15-game suspension, he tried to maintain the routine that has served him well in his three-plus NBA seasons.

'I'm calm,' he said, standing amid a pool of microphones, cameras and recorders more commonly seen during the playoffs. 'I'm going to try to be calm, but I know it's going to be hard.'

If Anthony was showing any signs of anxiety, those closest to him didn't notice.

His fiancee, La La Vazquez, shared his excitement about rejoining the Nuggets after a 36-day layoff. Nearly eight months pregnant, Vazquez got stuck making breakfast but said it was an otherwise tranquil day in the Anthony household.

'Just happy to be back,' she said as she sat courtside at the Nuggets' game against the Memphis Grizzlies.

Before the game, Justice Anthony and Vazquez's mother, Carmen, were able to spend time with their high-profile relatives, but the house guests did not interrupt Anthony's routine.

He was able to take a 2-hour nap between shootaround and tipoff. Sporting a dark-brown leather coat and matching hat, Anthony was a picture of cool when he walked into the Pepsi Center at 5:30 p.m.

It was the first time he was able to join his teammates in the 2 hours leading to a game since Dec. 16 when he took the floor against the Knicks.

Anthony was one of 10 players ejected in that game, and he was subsequently suspended for throwing a punch that caught New York rookie Mardy Collins in the jaw.

'I wish I could take that punch back,' Anthony said. 'But things happen.'

During his exile, Anthony lost 4 pounds but gained an immeasurable appreciation for the game he has been playing since he was about 8.

He said as much during a morning meeting with coach George Karl.

'I give him credit. I think he's respectful,' Karl said. 'I asked him what he learned, and he came out very clearly that he missed the game and how much he wants to fight back and be responsible and respectful to the game.'

Back in his element, Anthony was not immune from razzing.

Equipment manager Sparky Gonzales quipped Anthony's shoes had cobwebs and teammate Eduardo Najera turned off the music Anthony had selected just a few minutes earlier.

Unfazed, Anthony walked upstairs to the Nuggets' practice court for some more pregame work and later attended a chapel session. It wasn't until he saw his jersey hanging in his locker that the magnitude of the moment hit him.

'I was like a kid,' Anthony said. 'I stared at it. I put it over my head. I smelled it. I missed it. I don't ever want to leave this uniform here until I'm ready to retire.'

Nuggets fans certainly don't want to say goodbye anytime soon. The welcomed Anthony back unconditionally, cheering him during warm-ups and honoring him with homemade signs.

One sign near the tunnel to the locker room read: 'All Hail King Melo.'

When the lights went out for pregame introductions, Anthony was the last Nuggets starter introduced, with public address announcer Kyle Speller pronouncing: 'He's ba-aack!'

The sellout crowd, already on its feet, went wild as Anthony bounded onto the court with the enthusiasm of a 22-year-old with fresh legs. He received a big hug from teammate and close friend J.R. Smith, then took a moment to thank everyone who supported him through his suspension.

Tipoff couldn't come soon enough.

'The national anthem, it took about 5 minutes, but it felt like an hour,' Anthony said. 'I really wanted it to hurry up and get the first couple minutes going. My chest was burning. I felt like I was going to pass out, but I fought through it.'

Anthony was understandably rusty, missing all eight jump shots he took, but he still managed to score 28 points on 8-of-25 shooting. He added five rebounds and six assists in a 115-98 rout of the Grizzlies.

After leaving the floor to more adulation, Anthony found Vazquez and gave her a hug before heading to the locker room.

It was a day of celebration, a day of relief, a day of redemption.

For the first time in 2007, Anthony felt a sense of normalcy. He no longer was an outsider in his own locker room.

'I've never been away from the game of basketball this long except for in the summertime,' he said. 'This was different because I was punished. Now it's like I'm back off punishment and I'm good to go now.'



Return of Jordan

* After riding buses and whiffing at fastballs in the minor leagues, Michael Jordan gives up on his baseball dream and returns to the Chicago Bulls on March 19, 1995. He scores 19 points on 7-of-28 shooting in an overtime loss against the Indiana Pacers.

Return of Saturn

* After achieving multiplatinum status with Tragic Kingdom, frontwoman Gwen Stefani and No Doubt release Return of Saturn in April 2000. The album is received well critically but does not achieve the commercial success of Kingdom nearly five years earlier.

Return of the Jedi

* After rescuing Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt, young Luke Skywalker tries to lure his father, Darth Vader, from the Dark Side. Luke prevails in a light-saber duel with Vader on the Death Star and fulfills his destiny to return balance to the Force.


Photo (3)

Carmelo Anthony salutes the crowd after leaving Monday's win against Memphis with 28 points and six assists in his first game back from a 15-game suspension. EVAN SEMON / ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS

CAPTION: Gwen Stefani

четверг, 20 сентября 2012 г.

Dartmouth coach is confident Fiedler can do job.(SPORTS) - Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN)

There were snapshots Sunday that foretold the immediate future of the Vikings' quarterback situation. These scenes were available in the first hour after the Purple had defeated New Orleans 31-24.

Brad Johnson, still in game pants, came walking down a corridor in the Metrodome basement. Already, an X-ray had been taken of his right thumb, and Johnson knew it was broken. He was ashen and silent as he made his way through the media types to the home locker room.

A half-hour later, Randall Cunningham, looking elegant in a suit and leather coat, climbed the 30 steps from the Dome's basement to street level with only a slight limp.

Out in the parking lot, Jay Fiedler was with a group of Vikings and their families, sipping on a Corona and smiling at the conversation.

By Monday, the outward appearances had not changed much:

Johnson was wearing a purple-painted cast on his right hand and dealing with the somber news he was gone for another month, minimum. Cunningham was walking with little indication of discomfort after having two particles plucked from his knee in a one-hour arthroscopic procedure.

And Fiedler? He still was smiling, not at the continuing misfortunes of Johnson and Cunningham, but at the probability he will make his first NFL start Sunday against Cincinnati.

Coach Dennis Green called Cunningham 'questionable' and said he would not shy from using him Sunday, even though the lowly Bengals will be followed to town by Green Bay.

With Green being so emphatic in saying this to the media, that makes the following almost a certainty: - Fiedler will start, and the Vikings will concentrate on running the ball against a Cincinnati defense that rates 30th overall and 30th against the rush. - Cunningham will be listed as the second quarterback and will play only if the Vikings are in trouble, since Green wants to make sure Randall will be available to again drop bombs over Green Bay's too-short secondary.

'We're excited here,' Roger Hughes said. 'We feel the only thing Jay Fiedler has lacked in being an NFL quarterback is the opportunity to play.'

Hughes is the offensive coordinator at Dartmouth. Fiedler was his quarterback in an Ivy League championship season of 1992 and again in 1993. Fiedler won the Bushnell Award as the league's MVP in 1992 and was the all-Ivy quarterback in 1993.

'Jay was a decathlete in track and could outrun our receivers,' Hughes said. 'He was throwing to a bunch of 5.2 [seconds for 40 yards] guys, but he moved around and threw the ball well enough to make them look pretty good.'

Hughes did not hesitate when asked if there was a moment that he recalled from Fiedler's career.

'We were trailing Harvard by four, five points in Jay's senior season,' Hughes said. 'It was fourth-and-10 late in the game. If we didn't make it, we lost the game.

'Harvard blitzed and their guys were right on top of Jay. He took off right. Jay was on the dead run when he threw the ball back left and hit the receiver - Dave Scherer - for the first down.

'It was the best play I've ever seen a quarterback make. His arm is not a gun, but it's good enough to make plays at any level.

'Yes, this is the Ivy League and there aren't pro prospects at all positions. But there are a half-dozen players who wind up with NFL teams in most seasons. We see a few standout athletes every year in this league, and Jay was one of them.'

Fiedler was signed by Philadelphia and spent two seasons as an unused quarterback. He was briefly with Cincinnati in 1996. He coached receivers at Hofstra in 1997, then was signed by the Vikings to compete with Todd Bouman for the third quarterback spot in this season's training camp.

The Vikings chose Bouman. Monday, a Vikings veteran said many players were surprised by that decision, because Fiedler had clearly outplayed Bouman in the exhibitions.

Green repeated Monday that Bouman was kept when the third quarterback was looked at as a developmental spot on the roster - and Fiedler was retrieved from Hofstra as soon as Johnson was hurt in the season's second game.

Back in Hanover, N.H., Dartmouth's Hughes has taken sizable interest in the minor drama surrounding Fiedler and Bouman.

'Is it a small world or what?' Hughes said. 'I coached Jay here, and Bouman's father, J.B., was my high school coach in Crawford, Nebraska.'

The minor drama has turned into something more than that for the Vikings in the 11th week of the NFL season. Fiedler will make his first NFL start. And, if Cunningham's knee would prove more balky than expected, the untested Bouman would be No. 2 vs. Cincinnati.

'The Vikings don't have to worry about going with Jay this week,' Hughes said. 'He's talented enough to play, and he's definitely smart enough. He graduated from Dartmouth in 3 1/2 years with an engineering degree.

WANT THE REAL AWARDS? HERE'S WHAT INSIDERS SAY.(Sports) - The Post-Standard (Syracuse, NY)

Byline: Mike Waters and Kim Baxter Staff writers

The Big East Conference handed out its postseason awards Tuesday night, including player of the year, coach of the year and rookie of the year. Yawn.

Wasn't Carmelo Anthony's rookie-of-the-year award a shocker?

The Big East's awards are like the part of the iceberg that's above water. There's a whole lot more underneath, and that's where we wanted to go - behind the scenes, into the locker rooms and the coaches' meetings.

In the fourth annual Big East poll, The Post-Standard asked an assistant coach or a player from every Big East team - and did it anonymously to get honest answers - to find out what the insiders think. We got responses from 12 of the 14 schools, so everyone has plausible deniability if the final votes offend anyone.

Here is what we found, with selected comments attached from the respondents:

Best dunker: Hakim Warrick, Syracuse. 'He took off from a long ways away against us.'

Most overachieving team: Seton Hall. The Pirates just edged out West Virginia.

Most overachieving player: Drew Schifino, West Virginia. The only player who received more than one vote.

Worst underachieving team: Georgetown.

Worst underachieving player: Jerome Coleman, Rutgers. 'Just look at his percentages.'

Best screener: Donatas Zavackas and Chevy Troutman, Pittsburgh.

Biggest homecourt advantage: Syracuse.

Worst road-trip: Virginia Tech. 'You can't get there from here.'

Toughest fans: Pittsburgh. The Panthers' fans beat out Providence, which had won this award three straight years.

Most apathetic fans: Miami. 'The new arena hasn't helped.'

Best official: John Cahill. 'He never gets emotionally involved in the game no matter how much you're yelling at him.'

Worst official: John Clougherty.

Next year's surprise teams: Seton Hall and Providence.

Next year's surprise player: D'or Fischer, West Virginia. 'He'll give them an inside presence.'

Best garbage player: Andre Sweet, Seton Hall. 'He's the reason why they're winning.'

Assistant coach on the rise: Mike Hopkins, Syracuse, and Anthony Solomon, Notre Dame. Both received three votes.

Best trash-talker: Ryan Sidney, Boston College. 'The Julius Hodge of the Big East.'

Best crossover move: Chris Thomas, Notre Dame.

Biggest whiner (player): Ryan Sidney. 'Is Troy Murphy still in the league? Can I still vote for him?'

Biggest whiner (coach): Craig Esherick, Georgetown. 'His Mike Sweetney rant blows everyone else away.'

Most predictable team: Syracuse.

Player most likely to get a referee's call: Troy Bell, Boston College. 'He fakes getting fouled on threes and still gets the call.'

Best-dressed coach: Jay Wright, Villanova.

Worst-dressed coach (a.k.a. The Gale Catlett Leather Coat Memorial): Mike Brey, Notre Dame. 'The lack of neckware is getting stale.'

Funniest moment: Seton Hall goes 6-on-5 against Georgetown.

Most athletic player: Hakim Warrick, Syracuse.

Least athletic player: Terry Taylor, Virginia Tech. 'He's heavy, but he's effective.'

Best jump shot: Matt Carroll, Notre Dame.

Dirtiest player: James Jones, Miami, and Donatas Zavackas, Pittsburgh. The only players to receive more than one vote.

Strongest player: Mike Sweetney, Georgetown.

If you could add any player in the league to your team: Mike Sweetney, Georgetown.

Best passer: Andre Barrett, Seton Hall.

Road story of the year: Pittsburgh's bus got stuck in the snow on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. The Pitt players had to get out and push.

Best player introductions: Notre Dame.

Best home locker room: Rutgers. 'It's state of the art.'

Road story of the year - Part II: The Miami bus broke down in Morgantown and the team had to walk 200 yards up a hill to the hotel.

Best visiting locker room: Georgetown. 'I guess the NBA takes care of the visitors.'

Worst visiting locker room: St. John's (Alumni Hall). 'It's so small. It's one little bathroom.'

Best player stuck in the wrong system: Darius Rice, Miami. 'He's good enough to win. If he were somewhere else, he'd be winning.'



Stephen D. Cannerelli/Staff photographer

BEST SHOOTER: Notre Dame's Matt Carroll, with apologies to UConn's Ben Gordon, who edged out Carroll in 3-point shooting percentage (41.2 percent to 41.0). Color

Stephen D. Cannerelli/Staff photographer

STRONGEST: Georgetown's Mike Sweetney, a 260-pound load with skills. Color

Stephen D. Cannerelli/Staff photographer


WEST HARTFORD, Conn. -- Olympic figure skating champion Oksana Baiul applied Monday for admission to an alcohol education program in hopes of having a drunken driving charge against her dropped.

Baiul, 19, regrets her conduct, realizes she made a mistake and is ``determined to never let it happen again,'' said Paul Collins, one of her lawyers, following her brief appearance in Superior Court.

Most of the docket had been cleared by the time Baiul arrived at the courthouse with her three lawyers during the lunch recess.

Wearing a black leather coat over a ski sweater, she took a seat in a bench near the back of the courtroom with one of her attorneys. Reporters filled the three front rows. Her name was the first called when the afternoon session began.

Looking straight ahead, Baiul answered questions from Judge Terence Sullivan but did not discuss her actions early Jan. 12, when she ran her Mercedes off the road while driving an estimated 97 mph.

She suffered a concussion and needed 12 stitches in her scalp after driving her car into a cluster of trees in Bloomfield. Ari Zakarian, a fellow skater who was a passenger, was left with minor injuries.

A hospital report obtained by The Associated Press a day after the crash showed Baiul's blood-alcohol level was .168 percent, well above the state limit of .10 percent. Baiul also is two years under the legal drinking age.

Baiul, a Ukrainian who lives in the Hartford suburb of Simsbury, is charged with drunken driving and reckless driving.

среда, 19 сентября 2012 г.


Byline: Keith Marder Staff writer

Coach Bill Musselman says he will make his return to Albany in October when the Minnesota Timberwolves play the New Jersey Nets in a National Basketball Association exhibition game at the Knickerbocker Arena.

Although Arena manager Pat Lynch said those plans are not yet final, he promised other major league exhibition games at the Knick. He said the Knick will have 'definitely two, maybe three' National Hockey League exhibition games, and there is the possibility of another NBA game.

The NHL exhibition season runs from mid-September until early October.

Musselman, who coached the Albany Patroons to a Continental Basketball Association championship in 1988, confirmed the Timberwolves' game at the Knick. Musselman is in his first year as coach of the expansion Timberwolves.

The Nets-Timberwolves game will be part of a Knick exhibition schedule that may include many as five games, according to Lynch.

The NBA exhibition season usually runs during the final three weeks of October.

Lynch said he has been in contact with many teams, adding he would only bring in one with a high profile.

'I'm sure you'll see one of the New York (NHL) teams,' Lynch said, 'and you can expect you'll see the Flyers.'

The Philadelphia Flyers of the NHL are owned by Ed Snider, who also owns the Spectacor Management Co., which runs the Knickerbocker Arena.

Other NHL teams he said he is actively seeking include the Boston Bruins, Los Angeles Kings and Montreal Canadiens. NBA teams include the Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls (who are coached by Phil Jackson, another former Patroons coach), New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Lakers.

'We're talking to all of them,' Lynch said. 'We'd like to stick to the big names. If I didn't think the fans would accept it and come to it, I wouldn't book it.'

Musselman and the Timberwolves seem like a natural draw. Besides Musselman, four other members of the championship 1987-88 Patroons are currently members of the Timberwolves. Tod Murphy, the championship series Most Valuable Player, 1988 CBA Player of the Year Tony Campbell, Scott Roth and Sidney Lowe are on the 'Wolves' roster. That team played in the Washington Avenue Armory.

'I would enjoy it,' Murphy said. 'But I would rather play in the Armory.'

When pressed further, Murphy added: 'Not really, but that sounds good doesn't it? But I do look forward to playing in Albany and seeing the people.'

Musselman, who said he will leave his CBA-trademark leather coat in the closet, said he suggested the game to Timberwolves vice president of marketing and sales Tim Leiweke.

'That game should create some interest,' Musselman said. 'The people of Albany really treated me great. There are a lot of basketball fans there. When we played in Philadelphia, New Jersey and New York, a lot of them came to see us. I think it's a hell of a thing; it should draw a great crowd. It's a great thing for Albany.'

Lynch said the Nets became involved when vice president of basketball and business development Willis Reed came to the Knick to scout players in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament in March. Reed, who also scouted players at Patroons games, spoke to Lynch and said he was impressed with the new facility.

Lynch also said that the exhibition season is a good time to book an event for the Knick because the Patroons don't start until November. The Albany Admirals of the proposed Global Hockey League would not start until November.

'Down the road, we plan to go after more events,' Lynch said. 'We haven't had a hell of a lot of time to showcase the arena yet.'

In the past, there have been exhibition NHL games at RPI's Houston Field House and exhibition NHL and NBA games at the Glens Falls Civic Center.





It rustled the tall grass. It curved the fountains' spray in the middle of the greens-side ponds, splashing unsuspecting mallards. It stiffened flags, bowed flagsticks and swayed eucalyptus trees. It painted scenes you'll rarely see on a Southern California golf course, like a marshall with a wool scarf wrapped under his chin and over his ears, a fan stuffing his hands in the pockets of a long leather coat, and John Daly teeing off in what looked like a hunting vest.

The gusting wind at Valencia Country Club made Thursday a miserable day to play golf - and a perfectly delightful day to watch it.

Come to a PGA Tour event and you want to see two things, tricky conditions and golfers overcoming them. On both counts, it would be hard to improve on round one of the Nissan Open.

As Ernie Banks, who was among the spectators, might have said: ``Let's play 36!''

This is not the weather the golfers expect as their wet western swing concludes. Rain, yes. Gale, no.

All week, newspaper guys wrote about Duffy Waldorf, the Santa Clarita resident, and the edge he'd have playing on his home course. Then, Waldorf showed up at Wednesday afternoon's pro-am to find branches blowing off the fairway trees he knew so well.

He ran into his friend Rick Smith, the Valencia head pro. ``Some local knowledge!'' Waldorf exclaimed. ``I've never played this course when it's that windy.''

The wind wasn't as strong the next day. Yet Waldorf played the course like a member's guest, shooting 40 on the back nine Thursday before recovering to finish with a 1-over-par 72. That made him one of the lucky ones, because once you blew up to 5-over as he did, the unpredictable air currents made it hard to take aim at birdies.

Somebody spotted Corey Pavin's family huddled behind a tree. Seeking shelter. Or Corey's ball. He shot 75.

``It would change intensity and it was really blustery,'' Tiger Woods said. ``You'd throw grass. It (the wind) would be behind you one minute and in your face the next.''

Inconsistency. The players hate that. The wind made shots two clubs longer or shorter. The challenge was knowing which.

Players also hate to be fooled - as when they'd stand on the first tee, shielded from the northeast wind by the clubhouse, only to watch their drives drift into the rough on the right.

Yet for every Gabriel Hjerstedt (81), Bobby Gage (80) and Robin Freeman (79), there was someone who played as if it was dead calm. How, for instance, do you explain Billy Mayfair (65)?

The peculiar thing about the Valencia course Thursday was the combination of conditions that made it beatable.

Although the ankle-deep water from Monday's 4-1/2 inches of rain was gone, winter rules were in force, allowing players to lift and clean. That helped. Plus the greens were still soft. Plus the pin placements were easy, common practice at an unfamiliar PGA Tour stop like Valencia, which is hosting the Nissan while Riviera prepares for the U.S. Senior Open in July.

So the PGA got what it likes - birdies.

``It's a very difficult day, though the scores don't reflect it,'' said Scott Hoch, who is 4-under. ``I think anytime you have the caliber of players we have, and anytime you get the ball in your hand and can hit it to soft greens, you're going to have low scores, even with wind the way it was.''

Kite-flying weather, it was. And Tom flew to 3-under.

``Wind like this,'' said Woods (3-under), ``separates the guys who are playing well and the guys who are playing badly.''

And the thinking guys from the rest. Sometimes, Woods said, the wind might be so strong that you'd even have to factor it into your putting.

That's wind.

It's going to be that kind of tournament. If you're playing, bring your plaid sweater, your logoed jacket and your sponsor's cap - and your windsock.



PHOTO (Color) Fred Couples watches as his caddy drops some blades of grass to determine how the erratic wind is blowing at Valencia CC.

NFL BUZZ.(SPORTS) - The Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk, VA)

Byline: Compiled by Dave Lewis

Winning him over by filling his stomach

When the Packers were ``recruiting'' free-agent Reggie White a few years ago, a number of other teams were offering the big defensive end all kinds of perks.

Packers general manager Ron Wolf writes in his book that the wife of Art Modell gave White's wife, Sara, a $900 leather coat during a visit to Cleveland.

So how did Wolf wine and dine White when he finally made it to visit the Packers?

White and Wolf went to lunch at a Red Lobster in Green Bay.

Probably ordered the all-you-can-eat popcorn shrimp special.

Woof! Woof! Skins are bad to the bone

So, how bad are the Redskins?

Here's the Washington Post's Michael Wilbon's take on it:

``What began as a bad start is now a state of emergency.

``The Redskins are dreadful on offense, defense and special teams. And it's not like they're a break or two away from being any good, or like fixing one problem will help dramatically.

``At present the Redskins are bad to the bone, sorry and no-account through and through. For three straight weeks they have failed even to be competitive.

``How long before more than a couple of people start wearing bags over their heads at home games?''

Jumping on the Skins, Part II

After finishing 30th against the run in 1996 and 28th in 1997, the Redskins spent $16.4 million in signing bonuses and salaries on defensive tackles Dana Stubblefield and Dan Wilkinson.

The results so far:

In the first four games in 1997, Washington surrendered 568 yards on 124 carries. In the first four games this season, the Redskins have allowed 640 yards on 131 rushes.

Defensive coordinator Mike Nolan went to Washington hoping it would be a springboard to a head coaching job. At this point, the move looks more like a swan dive into an empty pool.

Passing the Buc

At 1-3, surely the Bucs are considering wholesale lineup changes to turn things around.

No way, says coach Tony Dungy.

``If we started taking out everybody that didn't play well,'' Dungy said, ``we might have to forfeit.''

Well, shut my mouth

Art Spander of the Oakland Tribune on the 49ers' easy win over the Falcons:

``An Atlanta cornerback named Juan Bolden took it upon himself to belittle Jerry Rice, calling him, `just another wide receiver.' Sure, and Monica Lewinsky is just another White House intern.

``Rice had eight receptions for 162 yards and two touchdowns. If Bolden couldn't cover Jerry, the least he should have done was cover his mouth.''

Saints aren't trying to fool anybody

Before anyone gets excited about the Saints' 3-0 start, perhaps a little examination is in order.

They've defeated the Rams, Panthers and Colts, teams that are a combined 1-10.

``We realize we're a lot like 20-22 teams. There are 6-8 elite teams and we're not in those 6-8,'' Saints general manager Bill Kuharich said. ``Everybody knows that. We're not trying to fool anybody and say we are. On the other hand, we're not apologizing for who we played or how we won.''

No such problems

One fan suffered a broken leg fighting for one of Mark McGwire's home runs, others have been bruised and battered.

With all the punching, poking and kicking that's gone on in Busch Stadium, there won't be any such concerns in the Trans World Dome when Rams quarterback Tony Banks throws his next pass into the empty stands.

Young passing early tests

Did someone forget to tell 49ers quarterback Steve Young the NFL season is a marathon, not a sprint?

Young has gone three straight games with at least 300 yards passing and three touchdowns.

So, how hot is Young?

Let's put it this way. With 1,053 yards and nine touchdowns, he's on pace to pass for an NFL record-tying 48 touchdowns and a record-setting 5,616 yards.

That's not hot, that's sizzling.




Teams were ready to offer Reggie White an ocean of money when he was shopping for a team. Seems all he really wanted was the fish.


Kev gauges the latest fashion.(Sport) - Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)

THE latest footballer's must-have accessory is . . . a coat lining thermometer!

I kid you not.

Kevin Campbell's classy leather coat has a temperature gauge neatly sewed inside - to show you that while the air temperature nudges a freezing two below, his body is a comfortable 37 degrees.

KC and the sunshine waistband?

(Alright. It's been a long week).

Tickets for two please.(Sport) - The Mirror (London, England)

FUNNY girl Dawn French thought she could slip into Dublin unnoticed yesterday.

She wore regulation black leather coat and dark glasses.

Hubby Lenny Henry obviously felt there were at least two good reasons for travelling incognito.

'Maybe I'll nip down to the Olympia Theatre and do a couple of shows,' he told waiting photo- graphers.

Comic Lenny is one of tonight's guest presenters at the supermodel charity bash in the Point Theatre.

He and Dawn were the dusk arrivals in a day which saw a queue of celebrities jetting in.

Simon Le Bon of Duran Duran quit skylarking with a Virgin air hostess to confide: 'I'll be sitting as close to the catwalk as possible.'

Wife Yasmin, in fake leopard skin coat, said, 'It's going to be a fun weekend.'

Wonderbra girl Eva Hertzigova flew in from New York and flew into the arms of companion, Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres.

They traded kisses for the cameras.

But all eyes will be on actress Patsy Kensit and Liam Gallagher of Oasis who arrive on separate flights today.

Cowboy way rules at Old West social ; These guys will learn bullwhip tricks, wear; leather fringe and do- si-do with women in calico - The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA)

Don't accuse Spanish Pecos of card-cheating unless you're readyto rest at Boot Hill.

He'll whip out his single-action pistol, plug everything insight, then ride off into the sunset on a stick horse. Yes, a stickhorse.

Spanish Pecos is Mike Canas, a graying Spaniard, soccer masterand marksman. He pulls out his buckskins and lever-action rifleseveral times a year to re-enact the rowdiest American cowboy days.

'Who hasn't heard of John Wayne?' says Mike, who lives in Coeurd'Alene now. 'A lot of Europeans - not me, but others - know moreabout the Old West than Americans do.'

Spanish Pecos will storm into Farragut State Park later this weekfor the eighth annual Great Northern Old West Encampment. He'll join230 other cowboys toting 19th century firearms.

For four days, they'll shoot bad guys and shoot the bull, eatbarbecue and learn bullwhip tricks. They'll wear leather fringe,black frock coats and bandannas. They'll do-si-do with women incalico, wax their mustaches and check their pocket watches.

'People come who have never fired a firearm of any kind,' saysDennis Mader, the shootout's founder. 'They're joining for thecolor. People are realizing that history is being lost.'

Dennis helped start shoot-'em-up re-enactments 21 years ago. Hisboyhood heroes were Roy Rogers and the Lone Ranger. He grew upwearing cowboy boots.

He shot muzzle-loaders and pistols, but neither sport was'cowboy.' So Dennis came up with his own event.

He and three friends organized a shoot in California that spoofedserious pistol groups. They dressed as cowboys and fired single-action guns that had to be cocked by hand. Balloons and wood cutoutswere their targets.

It was just for fun, and others wanted to play.

Dennis set rules for his second shoot. Participants wore 19thcentury costumes and Western personas. They shot pre-20th centurysingle-action guns - antiques or replicas. Dennis shot as DocHolliday. The rules stuck.

In 1984, he helped start the Single-Action Shooting Society tooversee the cowboy events.

Dennis moved to Coeur d'Alene in 1990 and found few single-action shooters. He rounded them up, one by one, until he figured hehad enough interest to try a shootout.

Sixty-five shooters in full cowboy regalia showed up at the firstPanhandle shootout at Farragut in 1993.

The event grew to include dancing, barbecue, vendors, exhibitsand a costume contest. Last year, the shootout drew 189 costumedparticipants and 1,500 spectators.

Ralph and Joanne Heinz judged costumes at last year's event.They're history buffs in Newport, Wash., and recreate the era of theIndian wars in the West for schoolchildren.

After the shootout, Ralph joined the Single Action ShootingSociety.

'I have no interest in shooting. I was a pro,' he says. He's aVietnam veteran. 'But I love the history.'

This year, Ralph and Joanne will put on two hour-long programs atFarragut. He'll come as a sergeant in the Seventh Cavalry in 1876 -the time of the Battle of the Little Big Horn. She'll come as anArmy post laundress and an officer's wife.

Their participation inspired Dennis to change the event's namefrom shootout to Old West Encampment.

'I find shooters are getting more interested in history,' hesays. 'Seventy to 80 percent pick aliases that are historicallybased.'

They research their characters down to the grittiest details.Dennis, who's 58, allowed someone to 'kill' him as Wild Bill Hickoka few years ago because Wild Bill died at 39. Now, Dennis is WesTerner, a composite character based on movie cowboys.

He expects a posse of cowboys this year, shooting real leadbullets at balloon desperados and dashing past Western storefrontsto win points.

Cowboys act out a predetermined scene and shoot targetsassociated with the story. For example, a cowboy may be jailedunjustly and have to escape on a stick horse while shooting his wayout of town.

'It's historical and hysterical,' Dennis says.

But it's as safe as guns get. Participants load their weaponsbefore each event and unload immediately after.

Two sidebars appeared with the story:



The Great Northern Old West Encampment runs Thursday throughSunday in Farragut State Park's shooting range. Thursday's eventsinclude a pot shoot and a seminar on antique arms-loading.

Opening ceremonies start at 9 a.m Friday with horses, flags and ashot from a howitzer. Master bullwhip maker Joe Strain will performat noon. Ralph and Joanne Heinz will perform 'Men and Women in theFrontier Army' at 2 p.m.

On Saturday, the Heinzes will perform at noon and Joe Strain at 2p.m.

Shooting and costume contests will continue all weekend.

Admission is free, but Farragut charges a $3 park fee. Spectatorsare welcome, should bring ear and eye protection and park at ScottCamp. A stagecoach or mule-drawn haywagon will take visitors to theencampment.

For details, call 667-6047.


Wishing Star

Bookings strong at Chicago collective; men's specialty stores hot on sweaters and leathers. (Chicago Menswear Collective) - Daily News Record

Men's specialty stores hot on sweaters and leathers

CHICAGO (FNS)--Men's specialty store executives were shopping the Chicago Mensweasr Collective with clean inventories and plans to spend as much as, if not more than, in past years.

The store owners browsing through the booth show at the Apparel Center were optimistic coming off a good holiday season and were particularly interested in sweaters and outerwear. Complicated-design sweaters, like those offered by Coogi but at lower prices, and new or additional leather outerwear resources were on many retailers' shopping lists.

The booth style of the show and the quality of the resources exhibiting also drew praise from several retailers.

The four-day show closed Tuesday.

Edwin T. Mosher, president, Mosher's Ltd., San Jose, Calif., is changing his buying patterns to place order closer to the season and was looking for manufacturers willing to work on those terms. 'I'm going to buy close to the vest. I may miss a top color, but I'll be healthier financially and I'll have control of my inventory,' he said.

He was buying merchandise for spring and looking at fall lines but not placing orders. Baseball caps and T-shirts from Old School Clothing Co. and Duck Hat were on Mosher's list for spring.

He was also filling in accessories such as spring belts from Cantebury and looking at dress and sport shirts.

Commented Robert Campbell, Robert Campbell Clothing, Stillwater, Okla.: 'I like the booth show format. You can see things better and it saves time. The show has become a lot more important to me.'

Fellow Oklahoman Gary Hulse, Gary Hulse Clothing, Enid, agreed. 'In the last three years, there has been an noticeable improvement in the quality of the vendors here.'

Campbell's open-to-buy was about the same as last year's. 'I'm buying closer to the season in sportswear but buying clothing and outerwear for fall.'

The two retailers were looking at high-performance, wrinkle-resistant products in slacks, shirts and suits, but Campbell was somewhat cautious. 'We sold performance pants well during the holidays but haven't had the returning-customer requests that might have been expected.'

Campbell was enthusiastic about sportswear with an English look in hunter green, burgundy, navy and classic plaids and tartans, particularly from Ricken.

Hulse noted he is going back to branded sportswear from such resources as Nautica, Ruff Hewn and Kenneth Gordon. 'The consumer recognizes the brands, and it's difficult finding dependable, legitimate private-label merchandise that is as good as the samples. The brands are also being more price-sensitive, not pricing in the stratosphere.'

Hulse open-to-buy was about the same as last year's, but he planned to commit less for third quarter, 'saving the dollars for fourth-quarter delivery.'

Kenneth Cotlar, of J. Covitch & Son, Ebensburg, Pa., was at the show for the first time but already planned to come back. 'It's a nice collection and good representation of vendors. The booths make it easy to get a feel for what is happening.'

Cotlar was buying sweaters from Tundra, 'a Coogi look without the price,' and looking for new outerwear resources, especially in leather. 'I found quite a few.'

J. Porter Castleberry of Stock's, Cincinnati, liked a new line of regular sportswear from Ashworth, a golfwear manufacturer. He also liked Ricken sportswear. 'I'll be spending a little more this year. Christmas was very good and we have enough cash to do what we want. Inventories are clean, though we had to discount pretty deep,' Castleberry said.

Pat Burns, Continental Clothing, Galesburg, Ill., 'bought more outerwear because inventories are clean with this cold weather.' Longer and full-length leathers and long wool coats were on his list.

Menswear designers favor summer coats despite heat - AP Online

MILAN (AP) — In a muggy, scorching Milan, it's hard to imagine a summer of lightweight coats and leather jackets.

That's the look, however, that designers are forecasting for the summer of 2013 after three days of preview presentations on the Milan runway.

From Ferragamo to Prada, from Jil Sander to Gucci, almost every label has its version of the non-belted raincoat, once a must for a rainy day in the 1960's.

The vintage leather jacket — from blazer to bomber to wind breaker and crafted out of super soft leather and suede — also makes a comeback for next summer.

Designers have also made men happy with the introduction of open-necked shirts for the warmer months. Mostly in white, these shirts come in crisp cotton and have a wide collar, unbuttoned just below the neck. Cool and comfortable, they easily pass the without-a-tie elegance test.

For the stuffier crowd, a few designers showed the shirts with ties worn under a see-through pullover, another popular item this season.

From the very start one message has come across bright and clear: next summer is all about color.

The Milan shows end Tuesday with Giorgio Armani's signature collection.



Creative director Frida Giannini has brought a whole lot of Mediterranean pizazz to Gucci.

It was no easy task following in the footsteps of American superstar Tom Ford, who turned the once-staid company into one of the sexiest labels in fashion before leaving in 2004. But the Rome-born Giannini decided to see fashion her own way — and that was somewhere between 'La Dolce Vita' and the Mediterranean seaside, with a bit of Anglo-American rock thrown in.

The result has been highly successful. And her latest menswear collection Monday for the summer of 2013 was no exception.

Next summer's Gucci palette is a burst of Mediterranean energy from sea blue and green to turquoise, terracotta, raspberry, orange, lemon and pistachio. These bright colors can be used for a suit, a pair of pants or a sweater. When mixed together, they create cheerful prints for silk shirts and slacks.

The new Gucci blazer in cotton jersey is double breasted and fitted around the waist, creating the slim effect favored by 1960s 'Dolce Vita' playboys. Trousers are classic but on the skinny side. Loosely knit pullovers, net-stitched polo shirts and printed foulard shirts add casual chic. Summer raincoats, a popular look on the current Milan runway, also come in bright shades.

The latest Gucci bag is roomy and colorful. Styles range from the canvas shoulder bag to the crocodile weekend bag.

The leitmotif of the warm weather collection is the classic Gucci loafer.



Giorgio Armani's Emporio menswear collection was elegant, classy and focused on single theme: a simple pair of summer shorts.

For his second-line summer 2013 collection, which was presented Monday, Armani paired cuffed shorts with single or double breasted jackets to create a spiffy warm weather blazer-and-pants effect. At times, the designer added a white shirt and tie — complete with tie pin — for extra sophistication.

Armani also paired his shorts with lightweight trench coats, soft leather jackets and see-through pullovers. He used new technical procedures to turn classic tweeds into super-light summer look-alikes. Colors belonged to the traditional Armani palette: gray, beige, brown and blue, with military green being a new entry.

Footwear came in extra sturdy leather running shoes, which doubled for classic lace-ups. Big bags were carried by hand with a shoulder strap option. Armani also offered a small iPad carrier, a very popular item this round.

At the end of the show Armani sent out a parade of male and female models dressed in swimsuits, with a huge photo of the Olympic circles in the runway's backdrop.

Armani is the official designer of the Italian team's uniforms for the London Olympics.



The Missoni summer man likes to travel in style and comfort. He wears a safari suit complete with matching hat, carries a large patterned bag and sports Missoni-patterned desert boots.

The models at the Missoni menswear show for the summer of 2013 presented Monday walked down a colored sandy runway worked into a Missoni pattern to underline the vacation mood of the collection.

The safari suit came with Bermuda shorts — popular this round of menswear — or casual trousers cuffed at the ankle. If he prefers, the Missoni man can don patterned sneakers instead of desert boots. Blazers and bomber jackets, also big items for next year's warmer weather, completed the Missoni summer suitcase.

Colors for next summer, which in general promise to be particularly bright, started at Missoni with sandy beige, dark olive and ink blue, and then burst out into poppy red, saffron yellow and emerald green.

The team that never was; The current Gophers basketball team has a chance to make its own history, but not with the style that the 1976- 77 group did.(SPORTS) - Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN)

Its record is safe. Its place in school history never was in question.

While the 1976-77 Gophers men's basketball team could have had its 16-1 start scrubbed from the school record books by this year's team, its beguiling mix of talent, personality and circumstance were never approached.

The numbers themselves - that 16-1 start, a 24-3 finish - tell only a fraction of the story. Two decades later, the names - Mychal Thompson, Kevin McHale, Ray Williams, Osborne Lockhart, Flip Saunders, even Dave Winey - mean more.

'No one knew how good that team was until we were done playing,' said Saunders, the point guard.

No one knew then because that was the best team that never was, its opportunity to play in the NCAA tournament removed by recruiting violations during the Bill Musselman years. That team, a collection of six scholarship players, six walk-ons and led by second-year coach Jim Dutcher, finished 24-3, but is 0-27 in the NCAA's eyes. That's because Thompson was ruled ineligible for selling his season tickets.

Saunders calls it the 'best six-scholarship team ever' and said the Gophers would have won the national championship that season. Three months before Marquette won the national title in coach Al McGuire's final season, the Gophers led Marquette by 24 points and won by six, in Milwaukee.

'That team had a spirit and a tough-mindedness that I don't think I'd ever seen before, or maybe since,' Dutcher said.

It had character, and characters. Even then, Thompson, a junior, and McHale, a freshman, were prepping to become perennial selections to the NBA's all-interview team. 'Mychal and Kevin always kind of had minds of their own,' Dutcher said.

And peculiar fashion tastes. McHale, the unabashed kid from the Iron Range, arrived late for the team bus the morning after an eight-point victory, grinning and wearing one of those oversized Big Red Nebraska cowboy hats.

Thompson preferred a style more fitting his Bahamian heritage. 'Mike was pompons, jingle bells and puka shells,' Saunders said, referring to the tassels and bells Thompson wore on his shoes and the chain he wore around his neck. 'The great thing about playing with Mychal is you always knew where he was when you were running the break because you could hear him coming, jing-jing-jing.'

And run the Gophers did. Thompson - a future No. 1 NBA draft pick who is host of a radio sports-talk show in Portland - was the gifted inside scorer (22 points a game). McHale and Winey were the lanky shot blockers and rebounders. Williams ran the wing and impressed onlookers with an athleticism that one night brought fans to their feet in Detroit when he went around four opponents, took off from a stride inside the free-throw line and dunked.

'Ray was an athlete,' said Dan Kosmoski, a little-used sophomore sub from Owatonna. 'We'd be working out in the gym and Ray would walk in, go up and dunk with his leather coat, his platform shoes and his backpack on, just to be silly.'

Williams became the first to play in the NBA and the only player, Saunders now jokes, who thought he should receive an assist every time he scored. Lockhart, the long-range shooter, played for the Harlem Globetrotters. Saunders - who averaged 32 points a game in high school in Ohio - was the unsung engineer who gravitated to coaching when his playing career ended after that season.

'I always tell people the only reason I played was because I was the only guy who would take the ball out of bounds,' Saunders said.

Back then, there was none of the current grumbling among the Williams Arena faithful about the coach's playing rotations. Six guys played, and Dutcher employed a match-up zone defense to help conserve players' energy.

The rest - remember Kosmoski, Steve Lingenfelter, Pat Foschi, David Carroll, Bill Zagar and Chris (only one B) Weber? - mostly sat. 'But we cheered like heck,' said Kosmoski, a former Gophers assistant who now coaches St. Olaf.

If Saunders or Lockhart ever needed a rest - which wasn't often - Williams

was moved from his forward spot. McHale started as the team's sixth man, but soon Winey, who now lives in Burnsville and works in the investment business, became the first, and only, man off the bench.

'We may have played 4-on-5 if we got in foul trouble,' said McHale, who was selected third overall by Boston in the 1980 NBA draft. 'But the guys who didn't play knew they wouldn't play and they had a ball.'

The team's nucleus had been recruited by Musselman. When the NCAA investigation and ensuing punishment hit, underclassmen Mark Olberding and Mark Landsberger left. Those who remained were sought by NCAA and Big Ten officials for follow-up interviews most of that season.

Saunders said those circumstances contributed to the special bond the players felt. McHale attributed it mostly to youth.

'That team was special for me because it was the first time,' said McHale, the Timberwolves' vice president of basketball operations. 'The first time you do anything is memorable. In the pros, the camaraderie is so different. When I was 22, I was playing with guys 34 and 35. What did I have in common with them? When I got to the `U,' I was 18 and I was playing with guys 19, 20 and 21.'

Two of that team's losses came against Michigan, the other in two overtimes at Purdue.

вторник, 18 сентября 2012 г.

Indy team music to his gears.(Sports) - Rocky Mountain News (Denver, CO)

Byline: Aaron J. Lopez, Rocky Mountain News

INDIANAPOLIS -- Roughneck, leather-coat-wearing racing veteran to his right. Aging, sunglasses-wearing rock 'n' roll icon to his left.

At times Wednesday, Carmelo Anthony wore an expression that said, 'What in the world have I gotten myself into?'

Two days after looking right at home at Madison Square Garden, Anthony visited Indianapolis Motor Speedway to officially announce his partnership with KISS frontman Gene Simmons and the Indy Racing League.

'The only auto racing I knew (growing up) was driving go-karts. I was a go-kart racer,' Anthony said. 'But as I got older, I've been paying attention to NASCAR and the Indy 500. It's exciting. I'm excited.'

Anthony, in his third season with the Denver Nuggets, will team with Simmons and longtime racing owner Ron Hemelgarn to back rookie driver P.J. Chesson for the 2006 IndyCar Series season.

The group was brought together by Simmons, whose marketing company recently became partners with the Indy Racing League.

'Watch us burn rubber, baby,' Simmons said.

Anthony, 21, received little exposure to motor sports while growing up in a rough section of Baltimore, and he seemed in awe at times Wednesday while visiting racing's most hallowed track.

He stared fondly at a blue racing helmet bearing his name and likeness on the side and marveled at the size of an Indy car.

'I'm not getting in there. It's too small,' he said. 'One of my legs can't even fit in there.'

At 5-foot-8, Chesson will handle the driving duties. Despite the differences in their height and backgrounds - Chesson was a medieval history major who loves to surf - Chesson and Anthony already have developed a team bond.

'He's such a chill dude. He's 100 percent supportive,' Chesson said. 'He's like, 'I want you to talk smack and get in there every weekend and don't be scared. I've got your back.' It's cool to have somebody like that. He's got a passion, and we're just going to go with a wing and a prayer.'

As for Simmons, he will serve as a capable mouthpiece for the team.

Apparently a graduate of the Don King School of Promotion, Simmons repeatedly compared racing to the American dream and said his relationship with Anthony and the IndyCar Series began with 'the tug of your heartstrings.'

Told that Anthony does not own a KISS album, Simmons did not seem surprised.

'I'm forbidden fruit,' he said. 'Once you go to certain households, mommy doesn't want you to see that dirty man who sticks his tongue out and spits out blood and all that stuff.'

MARTIN SITS AGAIN: After limping through back-to-back games, Nuggets forward Kenyon Martin was unable to play against the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night.

Martin, still bothered by a sore left knee, was unsure whether he would be able to return when Denver closes its seven-game trip with back-to-back games Friday in Memphis and Saturday in New Orleans.

'I know I'm not going to play any big minutes,' he said. 'If it's feeling well enough, then yeah. If not, that's what it is.'

Coach George Karl said he hopes Martin can play at least one of the next two games.

The Nuggets have done well in the 19 games Martin has missed this season, going 15-4. The success has prevented him from rushing his return.

'I want to take care of it as quick as possible, not put yourself in a position where you have to wait till the last week of the season. That's stressful,' he said. 'Every game's a must win, but we have other guys, and I'm confident those guys can get it done.'