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The Boston Globe

Sports

Christopher L. Gasper

Sorry Patriots fans, the Ravens will win

Sports and music are similar. They’re both a form of entertainment derived from performance. They both can strike a deep chord, and the enjoyment of both is highly preferential.

Just check the iTunes playlists of your friends and family.

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So, like an iPod at the gym, I’m putting my sports thoughts on shuffle with what iThink.

I think Carly Simon, not Beyonce, should perform in the Super Bowl XLVII halftime show. “You’re So Vain” is the perfect tune for Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis. He’s so vain he definitely thinks this Super Bowl is about him.

I think the NFL needs to abandon the idea of an 18-game regular season — for good. It’s beyond hypocritical for the NFL to repeatedly trumpet its efforts to protect players, and yet be willing to expose those same employees to more potential harm for profit. The expansion of the regular season and the NFL’s mission to make the game safer are diametrically opposed notions. End of story.

I think it is the essence of Alex Rodriguez that while he was finally owning up to his performance-enhancing drug use in February of 2009, he was allegedly still using PEDs. It was in February of 2009 that Rodriguez fessed up and told Peter Gammons that he had used PEDs from 2001-03 in Texas. He said he had repented and been clean ever since he was traded to the Yankees in 2004. The Miami New Times has written records from the PED-peddling chief of a South Florida anti-aging clinic that have A-Rod using human growth hormone and testosterone in February of ’09. Busted again, A-Fraud.

I think it’s a big weekend for the Harbaugh family. Not only are Jim and John facing off in Super Bowl XLVII, but brother-in-law Tom Crean (husband of Joani Harbaugh) has his No. 3-ranked Indiana University basketball team hosting top-ranked Michigan Saturday night. The winner will have sole possession of first place in the Big Ten. The game is about as ballyhooed a contest as there has been in a tepid season of college basketball that lacks a signature team (think last year’s Won-and-Done Kentucky Wildcats) or signature player (think Jimmer Fredette).

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I think the Celtics are better off not making the playoffs without Rajon Rondo. The primary reason the Green pushed the Heat to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals last season was Rondo’s spectacular play; he averaged 20.9 points and 11.3 assists in the series. This draft is expected to be about as deep as Snooki from “Jersey Shore,” but packaging a lottery pick could afford Danny Ainge the opportunity to dump one of the team’s collection of regrettable contracts.

I think the anti-gay comments of 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver at Super Bowl Media Day exposed both his ignorance and the absurdity of Super Bowl Media Day. Culliver said in an interview with radio talk show host/comedian Artie Lange that any gay teammate would have “to get up out of here.”

The question was posed right after Culliver was asked about his planned amorous activities with women for Super Bowl week. The NFL revels in the spectacle of Media Day, even selling tickets to fans now. But the league has to do a better job of making sure that players aren’t put in a position to embarrass themselves and the league by media outlets that are there just to shock and provoke.

I think Joe Flacco’s choice of words (“retarded”) to describe the sub-Arctic Super Bowl slated for next year in New Jersey was very unfortunate, but his larger point is correct. Super Bowl XLVIII already has me frosted. It’s a terrible idea to play the preeminent pro football game in the middle of winter, in the Northeast, at night.

And even if the game-night weather is 62 degrees, the logistics scream disaster. The NFL is using the midtown Manhattan Sheraton Hotel as the Super Bowl media center, but the teams are staying and practicing in New Jersey. Unless the NFL plans to part the Hudson River like the Red Sea, the traffic is going to make Route 1 in Foxborough after a Patriots game look like the Daytona 500.

I think I can’t wait for the Red Sox’ sellout streak to make like the Fort Myers equipment truck and hit the road. Red Sox chief operating officer and executive vice president Sam Kennedy has said there is a good chance the sellout streak (which has a double meaning) will end this season. It’s at 793 games and counting heading into the home opener April 8 against Baltimore.

Unless the Sox hold a month-long, six-year anniversary celebration for the 2007 Red Sox — who wants to see Bobby Kielty throw out the first pitch? — or a Terry Cooney Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle shoelace giveaway, there is no way they get out of April with the streak intact. April 19 against the Royals could be the date on the streak’s long-overdue death certificate.

I think that former St. Louis Rams running back Marshall Faulk should blame Mike Martz for losing Super Bowl XXXVI. Faulk told Comcast’s Tom E. Curran this week that he’ll never get over being cheated out of Super Bowl XXXVI by the Improbable Dream 2001 Patriots. Faulk blames “Spygate” for the loss. He should blame Martz’s hubris, which led him to still try to pass the ball when the Patriots were pounding the St. Louis receivers like a gavel and flooding the field with defensive backs.

Faulk led the NFL in touchdowns that season with 21 and was second in yards from scrimmage. He averaged 4.5 yards per carry in the game. But St. Louis dropped back to pass 47 times and ran only 22. Whether the Patriots knew parts of their game plan or not, it was flawed.

I think the Baltimore Ravens win Super Bowl XLVII. Sorry, Patriots fans.

Christopher L. Gasper can be reached at cgasper@ globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @cgasper.

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