Picked-up pieces while wondering how many of you watched the Rangers and Canadiens on television Saturday afternoon . . .
The Patriots and their fans need to retire “The Patriot Way.’’ No more, please. No more television commentators (this means you, Cris Collinsworth) watching a former bad guy rip up some yardage for the Patriots and announcing, “These players have baggage, but when they come here, it all goes away!’’
Convicted felon Nu’Keese Richardson is the latest troubled soul to get a shot with the Patriots. Nothing wrong with that. We are a land of second chances. But the owners (never Bill Belichick) need to cease with the phony notion that the Patriots are “different’’ from other NFL teams. Let’s go back and listen to Bob Kraft discussing Aaron Hernandez with the Boston Herald in September 2o12, two months after (according to authorities) Hernandez murdered two men in a drive-by shooting at the intersection of Herald Street and Shawmut Avenue. “He’s learned the Patriot Way. He’s living the Patriot Way. He thinks it’s changed him for the better.’’ Clearly, the Patriots did not know they had a murderer in their huddle throughout the 2012 season, but the timeline on Hernandez raises serious questions regarding the Patriots’ in-house security and background checking. According to the Suffolk County district attorney, Hernandez shot two men to death after a nightclub incident in Boston on July 16, 2012. Six weeks later, the Patriots rewarded Hernandez with a $40 million contract extension, which included a $12.5 million bonus. How is it that the Patriots knew nothing about Hernandez’s whereabouts on the night of July 16? There were multiple eyewitnesses to the shooting and investigators knew Hernandez was at the Cure nightclub on the night of July 16. Hernandez already was a local celebrity. No one said anything to anyone? The Patriots knew nothing? Gillette Stadium is a veritable fortress of paranoia and security. Reporters are required to report to “security command” before entering the stadium. Forty-two days after the murders, Hernandez donated $50,000 to the Myra Kraft Giving Back Fund and said, “I just hope I keep doing the right things, making the right decisions so I can have a good life and be there to live a good life with my family.’’ That’s when Kraft noted, “Some people might see all those tattoos on him and think . . . Maybe 10 years ago, I was in that class. [Now] I think, ‘Wow, this guy’s a good guy.’ ’’
The incomparable Bob Cousy will receive an honorary doctorate (humane letters) from Boston College Monday. Dr. Cousy, 85, was a Holy Cross legend, the first Celtics superstar, won the last of his six championships in his final season with the Celtics in 1962-63, then coached at Boston College for six seasons, compiling a record of 117-38. He lost his bride of 63 years, Missie, last September, and has lived in Worcester since he first set foot on the Holy Cross campus in 1946. We love ya, Cooz.
Baseball needs to change its rules regarding what an official scorer can rule when assigning hits and errors. The Texas official scorer was within the rules when he found a way to issue an error on David Ortiz’s perfect-game-busting popup. So why did MLB cave when Ortiz and his agent shamelessly asked for the hit? Because it’s almost always scored a hit and well, you know, everybody loves Big Papi. Cool. So either eliminate the “ordinary effort” clause or invent a system that would allow “team’’ errors. Let’s not forget that Ted Williams could have “officially” hit .400 by taking the day off when his average was .39955 before the final (doubleheader) day of the season in 1941. Oh, and I think P.K. Subban is looking for an assist on one of the Canadiens’ empty-net goals back in December.
Kevin Garnett was a no-show on the court and in the locker room after the Nets bowed out against the Heat Wednesday night. Tired act by a tired man. The Celtics got Garnett’s best in 2007-08 and there would have been no championship without him, but the head-banging and hyper-intensity always has given Garnett a lame excuse for behavior that is just plain selfish and rude most of the time. Time for KG to officially retire before he’s asked to take a fraud-o-meter test. He might fail.
The ads for “Million Dollar Arm’’ make one believe that the search for pitchers in India produced a big league ballplayer. Not true. Two young men were signed by the Pirates in 2008, but one was released after two seasons in the minors, and the other is still kicking around the lower minors.
Please no more leakage about Bruins broken fingers or high ankle sprains. We can accept the Bruins losing a shocker, getting upended by an underdog. But there’s been no dignity around the Black and Gold since the water-gate episode at the end of Game 5 in Boston. One of the great things about the Bruins is that they’ve always been a team of standup guys who don’t make excuses. This is no time to abandon that proud legacy.
Publicists for Charlie Sheen and Dennis Rodman must have prepped Donald Sterling for Anderson Cooper. Meanwhile, NBA owners truly believe they have the power to oust The Donald.
With all that talent, why doesn’t Rutgers win the college football national championship every year?
The Boudreau Shift was cute, quirky, and singular. Three infielders on the right side when Ted Williams came to bat. Now we have shifts for everybody. The analytics geeks have won. If Bill Veeck sent Eddie Gaedel to the plate in 2014, Joe Maddon would have a goofy, stats-backed infield configuration designed to defend against a 3-foot-7-inch righthanded hitter with no professional batting résumé.
Maybe by June 24 Bruins fans will care about the Vezina, Norris, and Selke presentations in Vegas.
Former Red Sox pitcher John Trautwein, who created the Will-to-Live Foundation after his son’s suicide, will be the keynote speaker at the Boston Public Library May 29 at 3 p.m. for the launch of the Boston Public Schools’ “Comprehensive Behavioral Health Model” addressing students’ behavioral and mental health. For information on the Will-to-Live Foundation, contact Trautwein at email@example.com
Congratulations to Northeastern baseball coach Neil McPhee, who is retired after coaching the Huskies for 29 years. Congrats also to Newton North baseball coach Joe Siciliano, who just notched his 300th win and has a highly ranked Tigers team readying for the tournament.
Do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of Ian Browne’s “Idiots Revisited.’’ The 2004 Red Sox ride is still the best of all championships and Browne has gathered the old gang to tell us what was really going on during that biblical run.