The Associated Press chose American Pharoah’s run to the Triple Crown of horse racing as its sports story of the year. Unfortunately, the winner wasn’t available for comment. . . . “The Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year is Serena Williams,” notes RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com. “Or American Pharoah if you ask Steve Harvey.” . . . Victor Espinoza rode American Pharoah to the Triple Crown in 2015 and isn’t happy that SI chose to honour Williams over the horse. In fact, he has said it is “a sham.” As Currie points out: “Not a surprise a jockey has his horse’s back.” . . .
My favourite tweet of the week came from Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats): “Ken Griffey Jr. joins Wade Boggs & Ozzie Smith from ‘The Simpsons’ Springfield Nuclear Power Plant softball roster to make the Hall of Fame.” . . . Headline at BorowitzReport.com: Cleveland fans apply to relocate Browns to Los Angeles. . . . Holy Toledo! The ECHL’s Toledo Walleye have scheduled Don Cherry Jersey Night for Jan. 23 when they play the Utah Grizzlies. The Walleye will wear special sweaters saluting Cherry’s loud wardrobe that is the star of Coach’s Corner on Hockey Night in Canada. For one night, at least, it’ll be Hockey Night in Toledo. . . .
“The underwear New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady wore during his cameo in the movie Ted 2 is going up for auction next week,” reports Ian Hamilton of the Regina Leader-Post, “with bids starting at $2,500. The bidding process is expected to be brief.” . . . Hamilton again: “Clemson University is building a $55-million US football facility that will have all of the usual amenities, including a weight room, dining hall and offices. But the complex also is to feature a miniature golf course, sand volleyball courts, laser tag, bowling lanes and a barbershop. Too bad textbooks didn’t make the cut.” . . . If you are driving through Kamloops, note that the speed limit on the Trans-Canada Highway through the eastern part of the city is whatever you want it to be. . . .
Richard Sherman of the Seattle Seahawks isn’t in a hurry to see the movie Concussion. As he told the Seattle Times: “I see a concussion movie every Sunday for free. I don’t need to go to the theater.” . . . A pre-Christmas tweet from the adorable Bette Midler: “Happy holidays to all: Here is my recipe for dairy-free, sugar-free, vegan eggnog: Bourbon.” . . . Ron Judd of the Seattle Times, with his non-reaction to the opening of a new eatery in his town: “This may surprise some people, but we have no real reaction to the news that Seattle is getting its first ‘cat cafe.’ Hey, crazy folks gotta eat, too.” . . . Richmond, B.C., blogger TC Chong reports: “British bookmaker Ladbrokes has posted odds of 1-2 that North Korea blows itself up before the Toronto Maple Leafs make the playoffs again.” . . .
“Black Lives Matter protesters shut down Mall of America and an airport terminal (recently),” reports Janice Hough, aka The Left Coast Sports Babe. “Now I sympathize with the cause. But if you want to get average Americans on your side, making them miss a flight or not get their Christmas shopping done is probably not the best way to do it.” . . . Hough, again: “A British astronaut apparently tried to call home and dialed a wrong number. Will be interesting to see how much his mobile phone company charges him for the mistake.” . . .
When the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins played during the NFL’s regular season there was an interesting statistic involving the starting quarterbacks. Sam Bradford of the Eagles had a contract that paid him US$763,824 per game. Kirk Cousins of the Redskins makes $660,000 for the season. Yes, Cousins got to the playoffs, while Bradford is watching from his couch. . . . “There is so much facial hair in the NHL this year,” tweets columnist Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun, “players probably will shave beards for the playoffs.” . . .
It was late last year when Rob Manfred, the commissioner of Major League Baseball, upheld a lifetime ban on all-time hit leader Pete Rose because of his gambling. It seems that comedian Argus Hamilton is in complete agreement: “We all agree the commissioner must stand for the integrity of the game. He can’t risk the revenue MLB makes from its fantasy baseball deals with FanDuel and Draft Kings.” . . . Noting Donald Trump’s support for Rose, Brad Dickson of the Omaha World-Herald speculated: “I’m going to guess those two met at the barber shop.” . . .
A tweet from Darren Rovell, ESPN Sports’ business reporter: “In its early days, Upper Deck used Angels reliever DeWayne Buice & 1B Wally Joyner. Wally got cash, made $10K. Buice took stock, made $17M.” . . . Headline at Fark.com: NFL can’t remember promising to fund concussion research. . . . No one consistently has better headlines than the gang at Fark.com. Like this one: Ethical hunter throws duck he shot back into sky. . . . It was accompanied by a photo of a hunter appearing to toss a duck towards the heavens. . . .
There were times during the Christmas period when four Sportsnet channels showed something called Trailer Park Boys Present Misplays all at the same time. Is this a great country, or what? . . . “I’m watching the Washington-Dallas football game,” noted comedy writer Jerry Perisho on the last Sunday of the NFL’s regular season. “Clearly, it’s time to stand up for innocent people whose name is being denigrated through its crass association with a football team. Change the name of the Cowboys.” . . . One more from Perisho: “Ken Griffey, Jr. was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. On his way to the podium, he pulled a hamstring and was placed on the disabled list.”
(Gregg Drinnan is a former sports editor of the Regina Leader-Post and the late Kamloops Daily News. He is at email@example.com and twitter.com/gdrinnan. Keeping Score appears here on weekends, except when it doesn’t.)