DON’T BOO STULL; WEEP FOR BALDWIN

 

Pitt fans booed Bill Stull. They cheered Tino Sunseri. They should weep for Jonathan Baldwin. Not too many truths became self-evident during Pitt’s season-opening win – it was only Youngstown State, after all – but the most worrisome was the minimization of Baldwin. Baldwin caught three balls, all in the second half. Only two passes went in his direction during the first 30 minutes, one a misfired screen that almost got Baldwin killed, the other an overthrown bomb. A press-box wag wondered aloud if Baldwin would transfer at halftime. Baldwin later hauled in a 42-yard aerial from Sunseri, but it was a balloon. Pure helium. Baldwin could have fair-caught it. Coach Dave Wannstedt cited the defensive attention paid Baldwin for the lack of touches provided the 6-6 receiver. But if new offensive coordinator Frank Cignetti Jr. can’t get Baldwin the ball against Youngstown State, what will happen against, say, Cincinnati?Read More »

SKATERS OF THE WORLD UNITE

 

The NHL Players’ Association has reorganized, ousting a cartel of cooperation led by the deposed Paul Kelly and setting the stage for Bob Goodenow-style hardliners to assume control in advance of the current CBA’s expiration on Sept. 15, 2011. That’s not good news. Hockey has long been its own worst enemy. In this case, NHL players just refuse to accept hockey’s status as a fringe sport. It’s not the NFL, MLB or even the NBA. TV ratings, in fact, give the nod to the World Series of Poker. The NHL isn’t New York. It’s Saskatoon. Hockey players tend to forget that. NHL superstars are quite happy with their level of pay even though Oliver Perez makes more than Sidney Crosby. Within the context of the revenue produced by hockey, the Crosbys, Malkins and Ovechkins do fine. They are fairly compensated. Fading older players are reportedly behind the union’s new-found militancy.Read More »

Flyers executive Bobby Clarke must have just realized the Penguins won the Stanley Cup

 

Philadelphia Flyers executive/icon/failed GM Bobby Clarke must have just realized the Penguins won the Stanley Cup, because he’s pissed. “We always tried to win,” Clarke said recently. “We didn’t do what Pittsburgh did, lose seven years in a row so they could get good. They did it twice, in fact. “It’s somewhat embarrassing that three of the last teams [in the 2009 playoffs] missed the playoffs six or seven years in a row: Washington, Chicago and Pittsburgh. Now they’re good, and the teams that try to win all the time get penalized. Our philosophy has never changed since 1967.” Most of Clarke’s points are exaggerated. For example, the Penguins only missed the playoffs two straight seasons prior to drafting Mario Lemieux, only three straight prior to drafting Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. Much of Clarke’s statement is nonsense. How is it “embarrassing” – in any way, for any reason –Read More »

Daily Buzz: Madden brings home a 14.0 rating for WXDX

 

105.9’s (WXDX) afternoon host Mark Madden formerly of ESPN Radio 1250 has been a sensation since hitting the FM airwaves last fall. Madden who was hired by WXDX in the fall of 2008m has brought record ratings to the station, nabbing a 14.0 rating (18-34 demographic) in the latest ratings cycle. Madden was fired by ESPN Radio 1250 last spring for making controversal statements about (MA) Senator Ted Kennedy. When Madden was first hired by WXDX, many questioned the format of Madden’s new show but it should not come as any surprise of the ratings Madden is bringing in. WXDX has hit the jackpot in hiring Madden and don’t overlook the fact of Madden providing a positive influence in WXDX retaining their radio rights to the Penguins. Madden has a large hockey following as he is the only radio host in Western Pennsylvania who puts hockey above football. WXDX andRead More »