Did you really think the Colts were finished for the season, putting the "AFterthought" in AFC? Last night's win over the Bengals should put them back near the top of most everyone's league rankings.
(And how many fantasy playoff games were won by the owner who came from behind with Peyton Manning's 4 TD passes? Or the owner who came from behind with Marvin Harrison's 3 TD catches?)
NBA: For Knicks and Nuggets, things are "fine." If suspending top players is wrong, who wants to be right? Short-handed, the Knicks beat the Jazz at the buzzer (to tie the Celtics, Raptors and Nets for the most wins, 10, in the Shitlantic Division). Meanwhile, the Nuggets -- without Carmelo Anthony or JR Smith – beat the previously sizzling Wizards in
College Hoops Parity Watch: Unbeaten
MLB Hot Stove: Credit the Tigers for locking up young starter Jeremy Bonderman (4Y, $38M). No need to troll the free agency depths looking for quality starters when they can re-sign the sick young bunch they already have.
Meanwhile, Pete Rose is going to get the star treatment from the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame. At least it's A Hall of Fame, if not THE Hall of Fame. What does it say that it took the Reds HOF this long to honor him? (It says they obviously need an attendance spike.)
College Football Coaching Carousel: Stanford hires Jim Harbaugh, and B.C. has reportedly hired Packers O.C. Jeff Jagodzinski, who apparently finds coaching Brett Favre so monumentally unsatisfying that he'd rather coach college kids.
Sports Business: ESPN's new ownership stake in Arena Football League is the best thing to ever happen to the sport – and it's a smart play for ESPN.
The deal gives the network a way to expand its "Monday night" football (small "n") presence without "Monday Night Football" (big "N") by creating weekly Arena games on Monday between March 12 and June 25, satisfying the football fans' jones for the sport.
Arena was so excited by the distribution opportunity that it delayed the start of its season. Plus, the league can take advantage of all of the distribution channels of ESPN. Meanwhile, the deal helps ESPN find more programming it can own, as the major sports leagues take (back) more and more ownership of their products.
Fans and critics who don't understand Arena mock it a little bit for the funky look and pinball scoring, but it's one of the great sports-league success stories of the last 25 years. (Compare the AFL's growth to, say, the NHL.)
But for a league that is revolutionary as much for its fan-friendly marketing as its rulebook, it's the most significant step yet to come that much closer to its existing fans, and – most importantly – create new ones.
(And, yet, somehow I don't think that Tony Kornheiser will be in the booth calling the games...)
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