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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEF

If Belle Wasn't a Flake Before, He Certainly Is Now

April 28, 1999|MAL FLORENCE

Are you ready for Albert Belle Slugger cereal? A few bites and you'll scowl all day.

The Oriole star's brand--an 18-ounce box of corn flakes--is headed to Baltimore-area supermarkets the first week of May.

Belle's cereal is coming out less than a month after Oriole third baseman Cal Ripken's face began showing up on boxes of Cal's Classic Os.

Reportedly, the idea for Belle's cereal came from the success of Buffalo Bill quarterback Doug Flutie's Flutie Flakes.

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Trivia time: Who holds the Laker record for three-point field goals made in a game without a miss?

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Doing their job: Marge Schott has been forced to sell her controlling interest in the Cincinnati Reds. She once complained about scouts: "All they do is watch games."

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Fabulous four: Michael Wilbon writing in the Washington Post and assuming that Ripken will soon join Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky and John Elway in retirement:

"Isn't that an appropriate set of faces for the Mount Rushmore of sports: Jordan, Gretzky, Elway and Ripken? . . . What would you want in an athlete you couldn't find in abundance among those four?"

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Loser's lament: Stephon Marbury of the New Jersey Nets, commenting to the New York Daily News:

"I've said all along that I don't think we should have had a season. The games have been horrible."

Especially for the Nets, who are in 14th place in the 15-team Eastern Conference.

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Sticks and stones: Phoenix Sun Coach Danny Ainge, on Dallas Maverick Coach Don Nelson's calling him unprofessional for changing his lineup before tip-off after seeing which Mavericks were starting.

"I'll put my ethics up against his any day. I would be embarrassed to admit something like that bothers me."

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Add Ainge: Ainge on former Chicago Bull center Luc Longley, now with the Suns: "He boxes out real well. The problem is, he keeps waiting for [Dennis] Rodman to get the rebound."

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Can you charge it? If you have some extra cash around the house, you might consider looking at the 76-foot Leopard at the Newport In-Water Boat Show starting today at the Newport Dunes and Marina.

The tab? Only $2.4 million.

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Come again? Chicago Bear offensive coordinator Gary Crownton, on quarterback Cade McNown, who listed at close to 6 feet 1, is considered by some to be too small: "He's about the size of a lot of guys that size."

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Nice of you: Former Vancouver Canuck goalie Glen Hanlon, who gave up Wayne Gretzky's first NHL goal: "Someone had to get him on his way."

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Trivia answer: Nick Van Exel, six for six against the Vancouver Grizzlies in 1997.

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And finally: Gary Shelton writing in the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times on the Orlando Magic:

"This is a team with a soft underbelly and a thin candy shell, a team that looks as if it has its eyes focused on the eighth playoff spot rather than the first.

"This a team without teeth, without hunger, without a star that shines brightly in the big moments. It is weak of mind and small of heart and short of passion."

What would Shelton write if the Magic had a losing record?

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