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Today's Best

by Richard Deitsch, 4/22/14
Craig Sager says he doesn't want Gregg Popovich to go soft. A snarling Pop makes for good television, Sager admits. But watching the Spurs' coach give him a national shout-out Sunday during an in-game interview with his 25-year-old son, Craig Jr., Sager said it was a moment he won't soon forget.

by Harvey Araton, New York Times 4/22/14
Since Red Holzman’s first tour of bench duty produced the franchise’s only two championships (in 1970 and 1973), 18 coaches have come and gone (including Holzman in a second, early 1980s go-round) if you count poor Herb Williams, a two-time interim coach.


Home Grown

by Stephen T. Watson, BUffalo News 4/22/14
Jerry Wojcik, a Bills fan and area native now living in Florida, contended in his October 2012 suit that the team violated the terms of its text service by sending him 13 messages over two weeks when it promised to send no more than five per week.

by Dan Herbeck, Buffalo News 4/21/14
Jim Kelly will be fielding offers to join an ownership group for the Buffalo Bills while he continues his treatment for sinus cancer at a Buffalo hospital. The Hall of Fame quarterback returned to Buffalo late Saturday after spending several weeks undergoing treatment in a New York City hospital.


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Our Contribution

Justice Neither Blind nor Deaf

by Bill Pucko, 4/21/14

Rubin "Hurricane" Carter was once a middleweight boxing championship contender.  He may have been a murderer.  He may not have been.  He was indisputably a cultural icon.  Rubin "Hurricane" Carter died peacefully Sunday in Toronto. He was 76.
Carter's legacy is anything but peaceful.  As an up and coming middleweight in the racially charged sixties, Carter was in trouble with the law as early as age 12.  He spent four years in prisons for various crimes.  That served as the backdrop for the events of June 16, 1966.
On that night, three white people were killed by two black men at the Lafayette Bar and Grill in Patterson, N.J.  Carter and another man, John Artis, were arrested shortly after the killings.  The two men were convicted of the crimes in 1967 largely on circumstantial evidence supplied by white witnesses with sketchy backgrounds.
While in prison in 1974, Carter wrote "The Sixteenth Round."  The autobiography caught the attention of singer/songwriter Bob Dylan who wrote the high powered "Hurricane."  That kind of public advocacy helped lead to a successful appeal for a new trial.  But Carter was convicted for a second time in 1976. 
The process finally played out in 1985 when after spending 19 years in prison, Carter's conviction was set aside due to prosecutorial misconduct.  Hurricane owed his freedom in no small measure to the involvement of celebrity activism by the likes of Dylan, Muhammad Ali and others.
There were no other convictions for the murders.  No one else was ever charged.  There was no justice for the families of the three victims.
This isn't really an isolated case.  High powered attorneys got Buffalo Bills Hall of Fame running back O.J. Simpson acquitted in a famous double murder trial in 1995.  And most recently, Tallahassee police failed to come up with enough evidence to even charge Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Jameis Winston of Florida State with a sexual assault.
These cases were all influenced in varying degrees by public pressure and the power of celebrity.  Race dominated the Simpson case.  The influence of a major college football program supported, some would say shielded Winston.
Sports, celebrity and the law.  Carter, Simpson and Winston.   Players in an American judicial system that is neither blind nor deaf.



from 4/2/14
Five experts weight in with their first round picks.

by Scott Gleeson, USA Today 3/25/14
Which teams win on the weekend to reach the Final Four? We'll take it a step further. Which team wins it all? Here's a breakdown of our 16 teams most likely to have that One Shining Moment.



by Michael Salfino, 4/22/14
Let’s focus on the pitchers who have ERAs that are not supported by their strikeout and walk performance, meaning they are unfairly high or low.

by Scott Pianowski, Roto Arcade 4/21/14
Chris Colabello is having a ball in the middle of the Minnesota lineup, taking advantage of the OBP options in front of him. Colabello already has 19 RBIs through 15 games, rocking a nifty .357/.410/.571 line. He's certainly not a prospect at age 30 and he didn't impress in last year's 55-game trial with Minnesota, but we do have to consider how he tore up Triple-A in 2013 (.352/.427/.639, 24 homers in 89 games). Late bloomer in Bloomington? Soda Pop is available in 58 percent of Yahoo leagues.