Ladies… Links: Something To Read So You Can Ignore Don Cherry

Bruins

The Bruins Saturday night in Vancouver. Boston will try to get back into the Stanley Cup Final series tonight with Game 3 at home. (Photo: Getty Images)

Just a quick hit to give you something to read between periods tonight.

Know how I always talk about the East Coast’s love for all things Boston? Here’s an article from the Globe and Mail that backs up my point, but only to a certain extent. See, what I got out of this was a) Bruins fans in the Maritimes consist of old guys who are missing their own teeth and b) the Maritimes consist solely of Nova Scotia…oh, wait, they threw PEI a bone. So this story drove me crazy all day. Yeah, I know it’s customary for Canadians in my part of the country to kvetch about how the rest of Canada views us. When national publications talk East Coast, they’re really just talking about Halifax (so we think). And the national CBC is even worse, as when they talk about the East, it seems to end at the Quebec border. Grrr.

So here’s a footnote to that Globe article. New Brunswick is home to two Bruins greats: Don Sweeney, who spent the better part of 15 seasons with Boston, and Willie O’Ree, who broke the NHL colour barrier. For the record, I know far more Bruins fans out here than actual Canucks fans (apologies to those cheering them on because they’re the last Canadian team standing).

And many of them are women.

Here’s something to make you smile, speaking of Boston: one kid honouring his uncle’s memory with an assist from the Red Sox. I can’t hate on them when they agree to do stuff like this.

This is from a few days ago, but Star Wars fans will enjoy this tale from our pal Andrew Bucholtz at Sporting Madness.

And now back to some seriousness: keep Nathan Horton in your thoughts, OK? God, I hate seeing anyone being carried off on a stretcher.

Mr. Monday: Kevin Durant

Thunder
Since it’s been all of five months since we did a post on Kevin Durant, we thought it was time for another montage of the Thunder’s forward. Never mind, of course, that he led Oklahoma City to a Game 7 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies Sunday with a stellar postseason offensive performance (39 points!) The team will return to the West final for the first time in 15 years when they were the celebrated Seattle (Super)Sonics. It won’t be an easy task, mind you: they’re facing the Mavs. But aren’t you glad to see a West final that doesn’t include Kobe for a change?

More Durant deliciousness and your Monday music fix after the jump.

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Hit & Run: Quick as a Bunny Edition

bunny

For those of you who observed Easter this weekend, we hope you had a wonderful time with family and friends and avoided eating your weight in ham and chocolate (um, unlike me.) Here’s a quick look at what you may have missed over your three-or-four day weekend.

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Mr. Mondays (yes, we have three!)

Red Sox

See? The Red Sox still remember how to smile. (AP Photo)

It’s the Monday of a four-day work week for me. Don’t those Mondays seem like the very longest of Mondays? Ugh. And for that reason, I wish I had this post up for you sooner. Forgive me. How about I make it up to you with not one, but three Mr. Mondays!

Let’s start with a belated Happy Patriots’ Day to the good residents of my geographical neighbours in Maine, and further on in Massachusetts. The Red Sox celebrated the day by beating up on the Toronto Blue Jays 9-1. It was like the War of 1812 except, um, not really. At all.

But hey, how about Jed Lowrie who had four hits including a two-run homer! I haven’t done the research, but at .516/.545/.774, is it safe to say that Jed is off to his Best Start Ever? It’s just a shame he’s Scutaro’s backup. The win is Boston’s third in a row, so maybe we’re finally seeing the team we were warned about all along.

See who else made our Monday after the jump.

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Hit and Run: You Suck, Albert

Guess who was SO excited to snag Albert Pujols on her fantasy team (in large part because one of the “people” drafting in front of her was Lady Bee’s dog, Daisy, but that’s another story) only to see him have one of his worst season starts ever?

Albert himself doesn’t seem worried and he has historically broken out of his slumps in spectacular fashion, so I’m sure it’s just a matter of being patient.  However, given my excellent record of jinxing things I write about on this blog let’s just try this:

Albert Pujols is so bad right now, you guys.  I think maybe he’s finally over the hill.  Or maybe the pressure of his contract year is getting to him.  Whatever the case, I don’t see him breaking out of this slump any time soon.

Moving on to things which don’t directly affect any of my teams (which usually nullifies any jinxes or reverse jinxes)….

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Blood, Brackets, and Tears: An NCAA Basketball Wrap-Up

It is December 2010.  You’re looking over your holiday gifts lists when there’s a loud pop behind you.  You turn around to seeyourself, wearing slightly less clothing, hair mussed and eyes bloodshoot.

“I came from the future to warn you,” the apparition says.  “Beware the brackets.  UConn will win and destroy us all.”

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Ladies… Linkups: With Added Opening Weekend Smugness (just a little)

Notre Dame's Skylar Diggins battling the Huskies' Kelly Faris (Photo Credit: Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

How can a weekend recovering from the flu be your best weekend ever? When you spend it on the couch with your hubby diamond surfing through the MLB Extra Innings free preview. Yankees game only on at 5? Let’s see how the Pirates are doing in Chicago! Painful to watch? Let’s see how Melky Cabrera looks in baby blues! Wait, can we go back to Texas again? Because that was awesome.

Honestly, I’d get nothing done if I had the baseball package for my dish.

Anyway, it’s another busy Monday. Here are some quick links to get you through the day:

Tonight: UConn. Butler. No, none of us picked these guys in the Championship. But kudos to unofficial winner CuteSports! [NCAA]

Tomorrow night, Notre Dame faces Texas A&M for the women’s basketball title. Skylar Diggins had 28 points last night as her Fightin’ Irish downed the Connecticut Huskies 72-63, ending their run for a third straight championship. [ESPN]

When is a story about pants awesome? When they are these pants! Yes, the Norwegians are BACK! By the way, Canada is 3-and-0 at the Men’s World Curling Championship in Regina. [Globe and Mail]

You guys, Aramis Ramirez needs a hug. [Onion Sports Network]

Guess who’s first in the AL East as of this afternoon? The Orioles! Guess who’s last? Here’s a hint. I’m told THEY’RE THE BEST TEAM ON PAPER!! [It's early.]

Move away from the panic button and have an excellent week!

Friday Fellow: John Daly

We haven’t done a Friday Fellow in quite some time, so I thought I’d post someone really awesome today: John Daly.

Yes, really. I know baseball season just started, and college basketball is wrapping up, but it just seems right to feature him today.

What’s not to like?  He lives his life in the fast lane, and is not afraid to compete in outfits most people wouldn’t dare wear out in public. I find that sort of sartorial bravery incredibly attractive.  So let’s explore the many hot angles of John Daly …

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VCU vs Butler

So admit it – your brackets are just as screwed up as mine are. Yeah, I know. Lots of upsets, lots of overtime, lots of surprises. But two of the bigger surprises came from the 8th seeded Butler and the young and admirable  Brad Stevens, and 11 seed Virginia Commonwealth (Virginia where?) with their fearless leader – Shaka Smart.  I was almost positive that the earlier Saturday game of this coming weekend would be Pitt vs. Kansas, especially when I was in 1000th place out of millions with ESPN’s bracket challenge after the first round and a half.  Boy was I ever wrong.  Thankfully, these two gentlemen make it very easy to feel good about rooting for the underdogs, and also make one of these final games very easy on the eyes.  Let’s take a side-by-side look at our favorite hottie NCAA BBall coaches  - one of them is guaranteed to be in the Championship Game, so regardless of Saturday’s results, which one wins Ladies… choice?

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Tweets from ‘letes

I’ll admit that I’m not very big in to Twitter – I’m not sure why, but it either feels like homework, or I end up feeling like I’m a little too self absorbed to really believe that my 61 followers truly care how I felt about that pizza sliceor what the weather is like in Manhattan from the window near my cubicle.  After being reminded a few dozen times that today was apparently the 5th birthday of the little blue bird who started it all, I decided to pay closer attention to what’s out there and who’s tweeting.  Newsflash, did you know that nearly everyone tweets? Jeez! Even if I did follow it, how do you sift through the crap  and find some damn information?

I did, however, find a few nuggets of gold in this river of 140-character-or-less overflow, and do you know where I found them coming from? Athletes! Not only are athletes on Twitter, but they’re often freaking hilarious! This gave me an idea for something new that I’d like to try, and I definitely need reader feedback. Introducing the first ever edition of the Ladies…Tweets from ‘letes!

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Hit and Run: With Spring in our Step

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Here's Marquette, whose victory over Syracuse last night made me cry. (Photo: Getty Images)

It’s Monday. How are your brackets looking? Like hell? Thought so.

First of all, a warm welcome to our special guest Ladies… Bracket Brawl participants: Melissa_thistle, Courknee35, Big10Bias and fellow Canuck/friend of the blog Andrew Bucholtz (you will go read his blog The 55-Yard Line now, won’t you?) Our current leader isn’t in our Ladies… group – due to technical difficulties, we had to create another group on ESPN.com so one gal could get her picks in. That gal is Buffalita, leading the pack with 460 points and picking Ohio State to win it all. CuteSports and Raven round out the Top 3 at 440 and 430 points respectively. Any hopes I had of repeating last year’s surprise success have been flushed down the proverbial toilet. I blame Butler.

Best of luck heading into Thursday! Sweet Sixteen will be hopefully be sweet for some of you.

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Ladies… Bracket Brawl

Ohio State freshman Jared Sullinger led the Buckeyes to the Big 10 Championship this past weekend. The Buckeyes are the odds-on favorite to win the Tourney, at least according to Vegas. OSU is the 7-2 favorite to win the National Title.

 

It’s that time of the year again where we call out sick on random weekdays with the March Madness Flu! The NCAA Tournament starts tomorrow, so that means it must be time for the Ladies… Annual Bracket Brawl.  The tourney gets underway early this year, with the “first round” kicking off tomorrow with (16) UNC-Asheville vs. (16) Arkansas-Little Rock at 6:30 PM (ET) followed by (12) UAB vs. (12) Clemson at 9:00 PM (ET) in Dayton, Ohio.

Again, we’re inviting all our readers to sign-up and submit their brackets to our Tournament Challenge group on ESPN.com.  The winner will get their very own Ladies… post where they can blog about whatever sports-related topic they wish.

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Take Us Out to the (Basket)Ball Game: The Ladies… Do Madison Square Garden

I almost didn’t make it to Wednesday’s Knicks-Hornets game.  First, I had it down on my calendar for Thursday.  Then there was the massive sinus attack that had me spending most of Wednesday afternoon lying flat on my back to keep my head from spinning. At 5:30, I was convinced my immune system had betrayed me. Luckily, the decongestant finally kicked in about half an hour later and I began to feel, if not perfectly healthy, at least capable of sitting upright and watching basketball for a few hours.

It was definitely worth it.  I had been to Madison Square Garden before, but never for a basketball game.  And particularly not a basketball game featuring Amare (over there on the left), Chris Paul, the newly arrived Carmelo, and a surprise mystery guest.  More pictures and details after the jump!

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Craft Like A Champion Week 4: A Numerical Trivia Challenge

Not sure what all this is about?  Click here, or follow the link in the sidebar!

Something strange happened when I started pulling together this week’s Craft Like A Champion post.  I was looking for athletes who could be a visual representation of the number of hats we’ve so far completed.  Now, there are some very famous retired athletes associated with this number, but I wanted pictures of current athletes with their current teams.  I did find some good candidates, but I also found not one, not two, but four fairly high profile athletes who used to wear this number but, because they’ve switched teams this off-season, now have new numbers.

I was going to just tell you who they were, but then I thought, why not do a reverse of our old Theme Thursdays game: I’ll tell you the theme, and you tell me the athletes.

For your first hint, here’s the number I was looking for as modeled by a few football players:

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How I Crafted Like A Champion (or “A Peek Into The Demented Mind of Lady Bee”)

Craft Like A Champion

Can you guess what I made with this classic baby yarn?

It’s been a head-spinning 24 hours of breaking news: Forsberg’s retirement (*sniff!*), pitchers and catchers reporting (YES!) and Arcade Fire‘s tremendous Grammy win (OUI!). So dizzying that one needs to sit down, take stock, maybe do a little knitting to calm down.

While one of us Ladies… checks on Games Mistress to she how she’s faring through this Pujols drama (CAN’T YOU SEE YOU’RE KILLING HER, ALBERT?!), let me tell you how I made out in our Craft Like A Champion Challenge.

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Why There Was No Craft Like A Champion Post This Week

There’s still time to finish your cap(s) for Craft Like a Champion and get them mailed before the February 28 deadline — and don’t forget many of you have a three day weekend coming up.  (Click here if you have no idea what I’m talking about.)

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to do a full roundup post this week, in large part because of computer problems (I can not WAIT until my new laptop comes in)  but also because I’m stuck in a feedback loop of feelings about my beloved Albert Pujols (click to enlarge).

Nerdy, I know, but it made me feel better than that stupid countdown clock.

The regular Craft Like a Champion roundup will resume next week — don’t forget to email us your cap photos!

Craft Like a Champion Week 3: We’re Listening

Not sure what this is all about?  Click here, or follow the Craft Like a Champion link in the sidebar.

We’re almost to the end of our Super Bowl dead period, but plenty of you are still snowbound, and maybe you’ve exhausted your DVRs and Netflix queues by now.  I find that I knit even faster when I’m just listening to something instead of watching TV, so why not try a podcast.  With help from Minda and Bee, I’ve pulled together a short list of sports podcast for the erstwhile Champion Crafter.

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Craft Like a Champion Week 2: The Green and Gold Lays Down the Gauntlet

Now that we have entered the pre-Super Bowl waiting period in earnest — and if you live in a city that has just had 19 inches of snow dumped on it overnight — you may have a little time on your hands.  Wouldn’t you like to use some of that time knitting a hat for a newborn in a developing country?  You don’t even have to stop watching TV to knit — I often use working on a knitted gift as an excuse to spend the whole day watching random British sitcoms on my Netflix instant account.

Missed last week’s kickoff?  Click here, or follow the link in the sidebar.

Of course, some of our lovely readers are not the procrastinating type.  Some of you have already finished not just one hat … Continue reading

The Ladies… Craft Like A Champion Challenge

We are fast approaching one of the notorious Dead Zones of the sports calendar: the two week period leading up to the Super Bowl.  The NHL and NBA are not yet at mid-season, college basketball is still a week or two away from beginning its crescendo to the tourney, and Spring Training is almost a month away.  For a vast majority of us, it’s even too cold to go outside. What’s a sports loving gal to do with all that time on her hands?

How about making a hat for a needy newborn as part of the Ladies… Craft Like A Champion Challenge?

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Hump Day Hottie: Caps in Suits

Not all of these guys made the cut after the jump, but obviously the Caps love their suits!

Awhile back, I tried to enlighten the Ladies… readers on the hotness that is the Washington Capitals.  Thanks to a super sexy GQ-esque team photo shoot, I was able to show you a bunch of hot hockey players in street clothes looking super fine.  Well, the brains behind the GQ shoot decided to give us more.  This recent shoot was done in conjunction with the re-launch of Scarlet Caps, a site about the Caps geared towards female fans.  While I’m not a huge fan of the site, I’m definitely a huge fan of the photo shoots.

So follow me after the jump to see hot athletes in suits.

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Hit and Run: Waiting for Those Other Shoes

 

NOT these shoes. Or these socks, for that matter.

The wait for the BCS Championship game (seriously, January 10? and a playoff would take too much time?) may be over, but the waiting for a lot of other sports news is just getting started.  I delayed this post as long as possible hoping a couple of these things might actually go ahead and happen, but apparently the sports world does not exist to satisfy my needs as a blogger. Still, here’s a brief run down of pending news just in case you don’t want to refresh ESPN every five minutes.

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Hump Day Hotties: NFL Divisional Playoffs

To get you ready for the NFL Divisional Playoffs this weekend, I thought I would feature a hottie from each team playing this weekend.  To see if your favorite hottie made the cut, take a trip with me after the jump.  I hope I don’t disappoint!

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I Was There: The Ladies… do the Rose Bowl!

In a wonderful surprise, my boyfriend got us Rose Bowl tickets for Christmas. Round trip airfare was outrageous, but we had family who needed to get a car from Milwaukee to LA, so, intrepid folks that we are, we signed on for the 30-odd hour drive, bought one-way tickets home from LA (much more reasonable) and were in for attending the 2011 Rose Bowl.

Despite the Badgers losing, it was an awesome experience. I got to put my feet in the Pacific Ocean, see Hollywood and Highland, Grauman’s Chinese Theater and the Hollywood sign, eat an In and Out Burger and see a smog-free Los Angeles.

The game itself was fun, close and somewhat frustrating. Wisconsin was unable to get any defensive pressure, they inexplicably went for a pass play on a two-point conversion that would have tied the game when the run game had been effective all day, and there were too many dropped balls. Despite some sloppy play, they were in the game the whole way, which is all a fan can ask for. It was a great game to watch.

We got up about 5:30 am on gameday to make it to Pasadena for the Rose Parade. Thanks to a hookup, we parked within two blocks of the parade route and were able to stand right behind a row of chairs for a perfect view of the parade.

Follow the jump for many more pictures from the parade and the game!

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I Was There: The Ladies… Do The Winter Classic

Hello, Ladies… readers! I know it’s been awhile since you’ve seen a post from me, but I’m back in full force and bringing you some hockey, of course!  I was lucky enough to be able to purchase Winter Classic tickets for the Capitals vs. Penguins game in Pittsburgh on New Year’s Day.  As a loyal Caps season ticket holder, I decided to make the purchase, book the hotel and make the trek to Western PA.

Make the trek with me after the jump to read all about my trip (and I promise some pictures of hot guys).

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Hit and Run: First of 2011 Edition

Coney Island Polar Bear Swim 2011

Girls, we should really consider an "I Was There" post from the Coney Island Polar Bear Swim next year. I'm just sayin'. (Reuters)

Happy New Year, readers! We hope you had a fabulous holiday that wasn’t marred by travel hiccups, barfing flu or Christmas morning plumbing problems (that last one happened to me. True story.) We’re back at it after a much-needed break. If you laid low this past weekend after a raucous New Year’s Eve, let’s fill you in on what you may have missed.

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Advent Calendar of Hotness: Day 20

(Photo: Getty Images)

Here’s a nice change from football and hockey players: US swimmer and three-time Olympic gold medalist Ryan Lochte, who won gold in the Mens’ 200 metre backstroke final at the FINA Short Course Swimming World Championship in Dubai this past weekend. It wasn’t the only individual race he won, and he just may have set a few records and raised the hype bar a little for London in 2012. But for now, let’s focus on the present. Let’s see that medal, Ryan…

(Photo: AP)

Now if that smile doesn’t take the edge off your holiday stress, nothing will.