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Len Berman

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Top 5 Sports Stories

Posted: 02/15/2013 10:22 am

TGIF everyone here's my Top 5 for February 15, 2013 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.

1. Quick Hits

  • Prosecutors in South Africa will pursue premeditated murder chargers against paralympian hero Oscar Pistorius in the shooting death of his model girlfriend.
  • It's the NBA All-Star break. The game is Sunday night in Houston.
  • Lakers owner Jerry Buss is hospitalized as he's reportedly being treated for cancer.
  • Michael Jordan turns 50 on Sunday causing lots of people to mouth off about who is better, among Jordan, LeBron James, and Kobe Bryant. Does it really matter?


2. Truth in Advertising

I give Kevin Youkilis credit, he didn't try to jive anyone. He joined the Yankees yesterday and said, "I'll always be a Red Sock." Considering the rivalry, that's a pretty ballsy thing to say, don't you think? If he plays well, Yankee fans won't care. If he doesn't, how quick will it take for New York fans to yell at him to put a sock in it, or something to that effect?

3. Time!

They're trying to speed up tennis. If a server takes more that 25 seconds a fault is called. If a returner takes too much time he/she loses a point. Not bad. But Rafael Nadal is not on board. He always takes longer and he says the rule hurts the fans. He says fans like long matches and for him to be competitive he needs extra time to serve. Interesting take. Would a three and a half-hour match be less compelling than a four-hour marathon? You decide. But one thing is clear. Baseball should enforce its 12 second rule between pitches.

4. Friday eMailbag

When I wrote about the "new" likable LeBron James, D.S. countered, "It's easy to be nice when things are going well. Still remember him walking off without handshakes during the playoffs two years ago. Let's see the class under fire and not when he's shooting 75 percent. Then I will be a fan."

With the IOC dumping wrestling from the 2020 Olympics while keeping modern pentathlon, T.H. writes, "All this popular sport did was bring together people, whose country's leaders are at each other's throats, in friendly competition. Aside from the fact that this is exactly what the Olympic ideal is supposed to be, what's wrong with dropping the sport? We obviously have the wrong concept of what the Olympics are all about."

And R.L. writes, "Let's bring the Olympics into the 21st century with the i-Pentathlon. The five events are tweeting, texting, posting, zinging and deleting. Everyone under 21 can be an athlete and win gold."

As for players who juice, J.L. writes, "I remember when retired ball players showed up for Old Timers' day quite a few pounds heftier. Then a few years back I started to notice they were showing up a quite a few pounds thinner."

And on February 12 a couple of you suggested a bonus birthday, the great Joe Garagiola who turned 87 years young. Happy belated birthday Joe. He was the first who "Spanned the World" with his baseball bloopers on the Tonight Show. The rest of us followed in his video footsteps.

5. Spanning the World

This week's Spanning the World highlight comes from a girls high school game in Monument, Colorado. Anna Olson lets fly with one of those full court shots and she certainly gets the bounce.

Spanning the World airs monthly on NBC's Today Show.

Happy Birthday: The Penguin, former Dodgers third baseman Ron Cey. 65.

Bonus Birthday: Actress Jane Seymour. 62.

Today in Sports: The New York Yankees buy Frank "Home Run" Baker from the Philadelphia Athletics for $37,500. Well worth it. He led the American League in 1914 with nine homers. 1916.

Bonus Event: President Rutherford B. Hayes signed a bill allowing female attorneys to argue cases before the Supreme Court. 1879.

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