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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEFING

Would Dodgers Make Him Think Any Differently?

September 29, 2000

Jon Heyman of Newsday already has given up on the New York Mets before the first pitch has been thrown in the postseason:

"We keep thinking this is a good Mets team, maybe even a great one. Yet there have been few reminders of this lately. Three victories over the Philadelphia Creamed Cheese last weekend had us needlessly giddy.

"With a week to go before America's Wild Card, the Mets, presumably will open their postseason in either St. Louis or San Francisco, there is little reason to believe they will play deep into the October derby."

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Trivia time: Who was the first USC sprinter to win a gold medal in the Olympic Games?

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Little Caesar: Tony Kornheiser in the Washington Post, on Redskin owner Dan Snyder: "[He] has stepped to the head of the line, ahead of George Steinbrenner and Jerry Jones, as the symbol of the hands-on, quick-fix, woe-if-we-lose owner.

"The reaction shots of Snyder's in the owner's box, his emotions cascading with every play, are meant to suggest a Roman emperor."

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An Olympic whodunnit: Mike Littwin in the Rocky Mountain News, on shotputter C.J. Hunter being accused of using banned substances:

"As an alternate explanation, it has been suggested that whatever Hunter has been taking might have been contaminated at the lab. That sounds credible. How long before we find out Mark Fuhrman was working there?

"If the bottle doesn't fit, you must acquit. If the man's obese, you must release. You get the idea."

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Serene scene: Woody Paige in the Denver Post, on the Olympic volleyball competition: "Bondi Beach has been peaceful. No protests. Except the one across the lane. Officers scurried over to the fish market to investigate an incident--which turned out to be a woman complaining about the small size of the prawns.

"In Atlanta four years ago, tons of sand was trucked in and a mock beach [without an ocean] was set up. It had all the ambience of a tractor pull and was like holding the Olympic rowing events in a bathtub."

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Say what? Al Certo, Andrew Golota's trainer, on his fighter's bout with Mike Tyson in Detroit on Oct. 20: "I don't think it's going to be a clean fight."

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It's Leo: Nick Canepa in the San Diego Union-Tribune: "If people aren't watching the Olympics because they already know the outcome, why is 'Titanic' the biggest-grossing movie of all time?"

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Oh, joy! Craig Kilborn, host of "The Late, Late Show," on the Sydney Games:

"For those of you unfamiliar with the Olympics, it's a time when athletes from all over the globe put aside their differences and come together to share steroids."

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Looking back: On this day in 1977, Muhammad Ali won a unanimous 15-round decision over Ernie Shavers to retain his world heavyweight title.

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Looking back again: On this day in 1985, Houston quarterback Warren Moon was sacked 12 times in a 17-10 loss to the Dallas Cowboys to tie an NFL record.

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Trivia answer: Charles Paddock in the 100 meters in the 1920 Games at Antwerp, Belgium.

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And finally: Mitch Albom in the Detroit Free Press, writing from Sydney: "Let's get something straight right from the start. Either you believe Olympic athletes use drugs, or you live on Mars.

"And if you believe Olympic athletes use drugs but American athletes don't--then you also live on Mars.

"And if you believe American athletes use drugs, but when they're caught, they'll immediately fess up to it, then you really live on . . ."

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