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The Inside Track | Morning Briefing

Nice Guys Sure, but Will They Finish Last?

March 28, 2000|MAL FLORENCE

Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe has been frustrated by the lack of controversy at the Red Sox spring training camp.

"Sox camp has been Tranquillity Base throughout the spring," he wrote. "I think the biggest controversy was Pedro Martinez arriving a half-hour late because he had to blow out the candles on his dad's birthday cake in the Dominican Republic.

"The 2000 Sox are a Boston sportswriter's worst nightmare--nice guys who stay out of trouble and say nothing inflammatory about one another or the opposition."

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Trivia time: Who holds the NCAA Final Four men's record for rebounds in a game?

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Killer team: Michael Wilbon of the Washington Post writing on Michigan State, now the favorite to win the NCAA Division I men's basketball championship:

"It is not a Michigan State team with the brilliance of Magic Johnson or the passion of Scott Skiles. But it's as tough and cold-blooded as the wind blowing off Lake Michigan in the winter."

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Hopeless: Ray Allen of the Milwaukee Bucks, after following up his five-for-20 shooting at the Meadowlands with a two-for-16 effort against Minnesota:

"Against New Jersey, I said, 'Well. I've got tomorrow.' Then tomorrow came and it was just as bad."

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Just dabbling: Sales of Brylcreem have tumbled in England since David Beckham of Manchester United, who endorses the hair tonic, shaved his head.

"We're cutting the price so sales grow back quicker than his hair," a spokesman told the London Sun.

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Shot and a beer: From comedy writer Jerry Perisho: "Fifteen intoxicated students were arrested for rioting after Purdue lost its basketball game to Wisconsin on Saturday.

"At least we know what they were drinking! Boilermakers!"

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Risky venture? Designated hitter Jose Canseco of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays is starting the Canseco Financial Group, a mortgage and financial investments firm.

Said Keith Olbermann of Fox Sports Net: 'They make money the old-fashioned way: They let Jose gamble with it."

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Looking back: On this day in 1950, City College of New York defeated Bradley in the NCAA men's basketball final, 71-68, becoming the only team to win the NCAA and NIT titles in the same year. Earlier, CCNY had defeated Bradley for the NIT title, 69-61.

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Trivia answer: Bill Russell of the University of San Francisco, 27, against Iowa in the 1956 championship game.

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And finally: Utah Jazz center Olden Polynice admits it was hard to play for an old-school coach like Jerry Sloan at the beginning.

"The little things, like having your drawstring tucked in--that drives him crazy if it's out," Polynice said.

"There was a game when Greg Ostertag was going for a layup, and Jerry was yelling at him to put his drawstring in. I'm thinking, 'Let him make the layup first.' "

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