ON CHARGES OF EXCESSIVE FAMILY LOYALTY

ESPN reported Tuesday that the NBA might ban Billy Donovan from coaching in the league for five years as part of the settlement for escaping his signed contract with the Orlando Magic. This is the same league that gave Roy Tarpley 146 chances to get off drugs.

SHEFF SERVES UP STUPIDITY

On Gary Sheffield’s published opinion that baseball favors Latin players over blacks because they are easier to control: Could it be that black youth no longer aspire to play ball because a jackass like Sheffield presumes to be their spokesman?

SELF-IMPOSED DEATH PENALTY

Franchise-tagged Patriots defensive back Asante Samuel says he’ll sit out the team’s first 10 regular-season games in protest. Knowing Bill Belichick’s tolerance for self-absorbed shenanigans, don’t expect to see Samuel in Weeks 11 through 17, the AFC playoffs or the Super Bowl, either.

DEFEATING THE PURPOSE

NFL Players Association boss Gene Upshaw told a newspaper that he would break Hall of Fame offensive lineman Joe DeLamielleure’s neck for criticizing Upshaw’s record of providing financial assistance to needy, retired players. Aw, c’mon Gene, wouldn’t that just make another $1 million you’ve failed to pay out?

THANKS FOR PARTICIPATING

Staff members of the Brooklyn Cyclones minor league baseball team played a 24-hour baseball marathon over the weekend and raised $2,500 for local food pantries. Eight million people within tobacco spitting distance and all the good people of New York could pony up was less than three grand? Nice.

OPEN MOUTH

“Nothing worked today. Sometimes you just have days like that,” Serena Williams said Tuesday after losing in the French Open quarterfinals to Justine Henin. “All she had to do was show up.” Losing with dignity and properly crediting her opponent the way we know and love.

JUST SAY MAYBE

Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme said Tuesday that he can’t guarantee a drug-free race this season. Really? Going out on a limb, there. I can’t guarantee Paris Hilton will enjoy prison, either.


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