Your morning roundup for April 28, the day we learn that God's advice for ending a 46-day beer-only fast is with a bacon smoothie, forever and ever, Amen.
• Barcelona beat Real Madrid 2-0 in yesterday's first-leg UEFA semifinal match. So, what better time than that to take a look at how Richard Swarbrick — aka @RikkiLeaks, aka the guy who beautifully animated Gareth Bale's play versus Inter Milan — interpreted Barca's 5-0 victory from earlier in the season. [Hotspur and Argyle] (H/T Sport Post)
• And after the seventh game, both the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning advanced to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs with one-goal victories. The former did so on the second overtime goal in three games by Nathan Horton; they'll face the Philadelphia Flyers [Boston Herald]. The latter defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 1-0 to overcome a 3-1 series deficit. They'll face the Washington Capitals next [Tampa Tribune].
• Fueled by a season-saving three and a seven-point overtime victory, the San Antonio Spurs can still ultimately qualify for the second round of the NBA playoffs [Express-News]. Siphoned dry by respective losses to the Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder, neither the Philadelphia 76ers nor Denver Nuggets can say the same. [Philadelphia Inquirer; Denver Post]
• If you're at all interested in a National Football League update, the U.S. District Judge "who lifted the lockout two days ago dealt another blow to the league late Wednesday, denying its request to put her ruling on hold pending appeals and guaranteeing more limbo for all 32 teams, thousands of players and millions of fans." Says public relations puppet/puppeteer Greg Aiello, "We are evaluating the district court's decision and will advise our clubs [Thursday] morning on how to proceed." He left out the word vigorously. [ESPN]
• There's some sort of event tonight where NFL franchises, while forced to eat prison cheese sandwiches, will select new players to add to their payrolls. Judicial intervention means the Philadelphia Eagles may be able to trade Michael Vick's backup for the rights to Jerome McDougle. [Bleeding Green Nation]
• It took five days, but another football player with ties to the Denver Broncos got stabbed. This time, it was defensive end Jason Hunter, by his girlfriend, in Detroit. [Reuters]
• Dodgers owner Frank McCourt thinks it's un-American for MLB commissioner Bud Selig to come in and take control of the team he's nurtured to financial and athletic health. Sayeth McCourt, "Nobody handed the Dodgers to me. Nobody is going to take them away." [LA Times]
• Doctors are trying to pull Bryan Stow out of the medically induced coma in which he was placed when senselessly beaten to the brink of death outside of McCourt's stadium. In previous attempts to do so, seizures have resulted [Santa Cruz Sentinel]. Barry Bonds has visited Stow; as an aside, depending on the severity of his injuries, Stow may well know Bonds was there [NBC Bay Area].
• Atlanta Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell is "deeply sorry" he made crude sexual gestures "with his hips and a bat" to those heckling homo fans in San Francisco. [The Blaze]
• Michael P. Ditka has some things to say about his recent arrest on charges of driving while under the influence of alcohol. Those things are: "I was not driving a car. I was parked. The keys weren't even in the ignition. I plan on pleading not guilty." and "If my name was Joe Smith, this would not have happened." Unless he was in one of 12 cities which have been victimized by the Joe Smith on their NBA roster. [Trib Local]
• Tim Tebow and Herschel Walker are said to be doing weird things together. Weird business things. Weird business things that make Florida and Georgia fans wonder whether there is a God after all. [Savannah Morning News]
• Bryce Harper is so powerful that, by striking out, he apparently sparked a bench-clearing non-brawl in Charleston, WV. Or something like that. [Nationals Enquirer]
• Here's an Ode to Dr. Z. [Good Men Project]
• Colorado Rapids midfielder Brian Mullan issued a formal apology for, you know, snapping Seattle Sounder Steve Zakuani's leg with a cheap-shot tackle. It was 27 words long, and issued through an agent. [Colorado Rapids]
• When you win a soccer-league title in Belgium, the female reporter in the locker room will, in fact, kind of flash you, if only for a second. Congratulations for that, Oud-Heverlee Leuven. [Bob's Blitz]
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