Despite Woods' bum knee, Slam talk not on last legs

The Baltimore Sun

News item: Tiger Woods will need up to six weeks to rehabilitate after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee for the second time in six years.

My take: He'll likely make his comeback at the U.S. Open in June in San Diego, where the dominant story line will be "Since Tiger heroically had to settle for second at the Masters, can he pull off a Tiger Slam and win the next four majors in a row on a bum knee?"

News item: Kent Gardens Elementary in McLean, Va., has joined a surprisingly long list of schools that have banned the age-old game of tag. The school's principal informed parents of the decision, saying that tag has become a game of "intense aggression."

My take: Tag is still legal in Maryland, but don't be surprised if the General Assembly soon passes a law mandating that students take a course in mixed martial arts to defend themselves.

News item: Ravens quarterback Steve McNair announced his retirement Thursday after 13 seasons in the NFL.

My take: Godspeed. I'm not saying "Air McNair" took a beating during his stellar career, but that's the first time I've ever seen anyone wear a flak jacket to a news conference.

News item: Jose Canseco will meet with federal investigators this week to answer questions related to the Roger Clemens perjury investigation. Believe it or not, Canseco has never been questioned by federal law-enforcement agents about performance-enhancing drugs.

My take: It was just a timing thing. The federal agents did not have the luxury of waiting for his next book to come out.

News item: It took the Colorado Rockies more than six hours and 22 innings to defeat the San Diego Padres on Thursday night (and Friday morning).

My take: If you want a little extra perspective on the length of the game, Jim Edmonds pinch hit for Scott Hairston in the 10th inning and went 0-for-5.

News item: The Green Bay Packers have announced they will retire Brett Favre's No. 4 jersey during their season opener Sept. 8.

My take: It's all tentative, however, because the team can't get a firm answer from the jersey about whether it's actually going to retire.

News item: The Tampa Bay Rays signed infielder Evan Longoria to a six-year contract (with three option years) after he had played only six games in the major leagues.

My take: Six years for $17.5 million? If I'm his agent, I don't sign that deal. If I'm him, however, I take the money and never worry about another roster move the rest of my career.

News item: The New York Knicks fired coach Isiah Thomas on Friday, ending months of speculation about his future with the team. Thomas, who presided - in one way or another - over one of the worst periods in club history, will remain with the team to work under club president Donnie Walsh in an advisory capacity.

My take: Apparently, whenever Walsh needs advice on how to turn an NBA franchise into a nightly David Letterman punch line, Thomas is just down the hall.

News item: NBA owners have approved the Seattle SuperSonics' move to Oklahoma City for the 2008-09 season if they can get out of the final two years of their lease at Seattle's KeyArena.

My take: I'm guessing they end up staying. Former owner Howard Schultz is preparing to sue current owner Clay Bennett for failing to keep his promise to make a good-faith effort to keep the team in Seattle. That kind of suit doesn't usually fly, unless there's proof - like the e-mails and public comments from Bennett and his partners all but confirming they intended to move the franchise from the get-go.

News item: The new Olympic stadium in Beijing is finally complete, just 3 1/2 months behind schedule.

My take: Of course, anyone publicly admitting that it didn't get built on time probably risks several years in prison.

Bonus Beijing-bashing take: Just a thought, but if you're planning on attending the Games, try not to inhale.

News item: Miguel Tejada admitted that he has been lying about his age throughout his major league career and actually is two years older than previously believed.

My take: We noticed.

Listen to Peter Schmuck on WBAL (1090 AM) at noon most Saturdays and Sundays.

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