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THE INSIDE TRACK | Morning Briefing

This Will Be a Big Deal for Mariner Fans

April 15, 2001|MAL FLORENCE

Art Thiel of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, commenting on Alex Rodriguez's return to Seattle on Monday night with the Texas Rangers:

" . . . And the race is on to see which fan reaction will be the winner: derision, scorn, contempt or just plain fury. It might be a dead heat.

"Rodriguez's crime is well known. He took the money [megabucks] and ran. The fact that the action is what nearly every other American would have done hasn't changed the level of contempt for his departure from Seattle."

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Trivia time: Who holds the record for scoring average in an NBA playoff series?

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Zone handicap: Sam Smith in the Chicago Tribune: 'There's one positive from the NBA's announcement Thursday that it intends to allow all defenses, including zones, starting next season.

"It means we can stop talking about Michael Jordan coming back to the NBA. Jordan isn't about to return if zone defenses are allowed, because with a zone defense you can't be Michael Jordan.

"And we know Michael isn't about to return to pro basketball to be Jalen Rose--good, but not great."

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More on zones: Mark Bradley in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: "Get ready for games both in and from the 50s. Meaning the early 1950s, that Paleozoic Era before the NBA adopted the shot clock, and also the 50s as a team's point total after 48 minutes of work."

Kings for a day: Ron Artest, Chicago Bull forward, after his team had beaten the Washington Wizards, 113-109, Wednesday night to end a franchise- record 25-game road losing streak:

"All in all, we're still a horrible team, but we got the win. When we get a win, it's like winning the championship back in Chicago. We can lose 50 in a row and get one win and be king."

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Any questions? San Francisco Giant right fielder Armando Rios, explaining why he bleached his hair blond: "Why not do the thing you love to do?"

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Looking back: On this day in 1918, Babe Ruth pitched the Boston Red Sox to a 7-1 opening-day victory over the Philadelphia Athletics.

Looking back again: On this day in 1958, the San Francisco Giants routed the Dodgers, 8-0, in the first major league West Coast game at Seals Stadium.

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Trivia answer: Jerry West of the Lakers, 46.3 points in six games against the Baltimore Bullets in 1965.

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And finally: Peter Vecsey in the New York Post, writing with tongue firmly planted in cheek:

"According to Michael Jordan's court jester, Charlatan Barkley, His Airness plans to announce whether he's leaving retirement villages in Las Vegas and Paradise Island for the thrill of joining the Washington Generals, no later than the end of the playoffs in mid-to-late June.

"Or, immediately after sustaining a deleterious injury in practice or a damaging blow to his ego."

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