Your morning roundup for March 1. Got any stories or photos for us? Tip your editors.
What we're watching (all times EST): PGA Honda Classic, first round (Golf Channel) at 3. VMI vs. Winthrop (ESPNU) in men's college basketball at 6. Michigan at Illinois (ESPN) and Florida State at Virginia (ESPN2) in men's college basketball at 7. Thunder at Magic (TNT) at 8. NC-Asheville vs. Charleston Southern (ESPNU) in men's college basketball at 8. Georgia at Kentucky (ESPN) and Villanova at Rutgers (ESPN2) in men's college basketball at 9. Heat at Trail Blazers (TNT) at 10:30. Colorado at Oregon (Fox Sports Net) in men's college basketball at 10:30. New Mexico State at Nevada (ESPN2) in men's college basketball at 11.
Tiny Bits of Joy: "This isn't a story about how sports allowed me to form some kind of ethereal bond with my father, helping me to find a way to love him when doing so always seemed impossible. The story does not end with me wistfully holding that old photograph of my father in his little league uniform or taking his old clubs out for one more round of golf as part of some kind of cinematic ritual of forgiveness and appreciation. There is no dramatic turn or reversal here that brings with it the idea that sports can heal old wounds. Sports don't really have that power, no matter how many times we may have been told otherwise by a Monday Night Football broadcast. What sports can do, however, is simplify things. There will always be a game to be played and a victory to be had. It's while the outcome of these games are being decided that we are given the opportunity to extract tiny bits of happiness out of the seemingly mundane. We smile and nod our heads at the sight of a bang-bang double play or a drive that skips perfectly down the center of the fairway. It will always be this way. It is within this realm of simplicity that sports help me make sense of my father. Those golf clubs and that photograph help me understand that he used to be someone else. He used to be just a regular guy, one who grew up playing little league and getting a kick out of a perfectly struck golf ball. He used to enjoy the same things that I do. This is an incredibly simple way to conceive of my father, but that's precisely what comforts me, as it reminds me that his life wasn't always so full of ugliness. I can hold onto this thought and smile just a little." [The Good Men Project]
Rangers enforcer John Scott would let Jeremy Lin punch him: "Two weeks ago, when the Chicago Blackhawks were in town to face the Rangers, John Scott sat in the stands at Madison Square Garden with his teammates Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp to watch the Knicks play the Sacramento Kings. Like almost everyone else, Scott got caught up in the play of Knicks guard Jeremy Lin, but critiqued Lin's defense. Now that Scott is a member the Rangers and works for the same parent company as Lin, he was offered a chance to soften his review. 'No, it's O.K.,' Scott said, laughing. 'You can't kill a guy for offering his opinion. I was just saying he had one weakness to work on. Most of us have a lot more than that. Look at me. No one thought I could make it to the N.H.L., and there are a lot of people who still don't think I belong. I haven't come close to reaching his level, and I never will, but I can relate to Jeremy. I hope I get to meet him soon at the Garden or the practice facility. For what I said, he can even punch me in the hallway if he wants to.'" [New York Times]
His Airness is selling his Chicago castle: "Basketball superstar Michael Jordan's longtime family home in Highland Park is on the market, but it'll cost a bit more than the latest must-have pair of Air Jordans...It's listed for $29 million, furnished, putting it in rare air as the highest-priced home listing in the Chicago market. The secluded compound, built in the mid-1990s and renovated in 2009, encompasses more than 56,000 square feet and includes nine bedrooms, 15 full baths, four half baths and five fireplaces spread between a main house and a connected guesthouse...And then there's the attached indoor basketball complex. The facility, completed in 2001, has a full-size regulation basketball court with cushioned hardwood floors, adjustable backboards and baskets, and a sound system tuned to provide the right acoustics in the court space." [Chicago Tribune; h/t tomuban]
Your Yemeni cola commercial interlude:
Luke Scott doesn't like Red Sox fans. No one likes Luke Scott: "Tampa Bay Rays slugger Luke Scott, who not 48 hours ago confined his enemies to "criminals and communists," forgot one. Fans of the Olde Towne Teame, the Boston Red Sox. Scott really dislikes Red Sox fans. 'Just their arrogance,' Scott said. 'The fans come in and they take over the city. They're ruthless. They're vulgar. They cause trouble. They talk about your family. Swear at you. Who likes that? When people do that, it just gives you more incentive to beat them. Then when things like [the last game of last season] happen, you celebrate even more. You go to St. Louis—classiest fans in the game. You do well, there's no vulgarity. You know what? You don't wish them bad.'" [Big League Stew]
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