Closing Time

Due to piss poor time management, today's NHL Closer will once again share a post with college football and basketball. Sorry for the inconvenience. I started playing '1942' on my new Capcom plug-and-play and well ... the red enemy planes kept giving me extra loop power-ups! What was I to do? Not use them? Please!

Ice Ice Baby. In my dreams every week is Shark Week. Evgeni Nabokov made 26 saves for his fifth shutout as the Sharks extended their club-record road-winning streak to eight games with a 1-0 win over the Blues. Chomp! ... Zach Parise scored the lone shootout goal, but Martin Brodeur did all the work, to hand the Devils a 2-1 SO victory over the Sabres. This poke-check save was especially sick. ... Chad LaRose, Eric Staal, Mike Commodore and Rod Brind'Amour all tickled the net to give the Hurricanes a big 4-3 win over the Bruins. Those four names rock.

Bowl Central. Matt Ryan's two first names threw three TD passes as the Eagles extended the nation's longest bowl winning streak to eight with a 24-21 victory over Michigan State in the Champs Sports Bowl. I've already told you this. ... Backup running back Justin Watts scored the go-ahead touchdown early in the fourth to help TCU to a 20-13 win over Houston in the Texas Bowl. Yee-haw! ... Yvenson Bernard rushed for 177 yards in his final college game as Oregon State topped Maryland 21-14 in the Emerald Bowl. ... And finally, I read two NBA magazines and a Reader's Digest in my post-turkey Toilet Bowl visit. Winner: Me!

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They're Playing Amateur Basketball. Where were you when A.J. Graves sank a 35-foot shot at the buzzer to lift No. 16 Butler to a 57-55 win over Southern Illinois? Oh, at Grandma's still? How is she? ... Chris Warren scored 17 and Eniel Polynice was an assist shy of a triple-double as No. 22 Ole Miss notched a 78-58 win over Southern Miss. Tell me Eniel Polynice is this man's son. ... Muscular Will Daniels scored 18 points to lead No. 25 Rhode Island to a 92-75 win over Eastern Michigan in the Islander Invitational. I've actually partied at Eastern Michigan University before; I sort of wish they won.