06/02/2011 11:41 am ET Updated Aug 02, 2011

Top 5 Sports Stories

Happy Thursday everyone, here's my Top 5 for June 2, 2011 from Len Berman at

1. Quick Hits

  • Stanley Cup finals game one, Vancouver 1 Boston 0.
  • In the NBA Finals, the Heat try to take a two games to none lead over Dallas tonight in Miami.
  • Word is that Red Sox pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka will undergo season ending Tommy John surgery.
  • The Angels team plane makes a safe emergency landing at LAX.
  • What scandal? What drought? Forbes says Tiger Woods is the highest earning athlete ($75 million), and it isn't even a horse race. Kobe Bryant is second at $53 million.

2. Tweet Tweet

What ever happened to tearful news conferences to announce player retirements? Players cried as the uniforms were literally torn off their backs. Not anymore. Who needs news conference? In fact, who needs the media?

Shaquille O'Neal announced his retirement on Twitter. He included a short video. No tears. No fuss. Just a direct message to his fans. Next thing you know, sports commentators will be rendered obsolete. What a revoltin' development!

3. Polling Booth

What, A-Rod is overrated? Joba Chamberlain too? Not to mention Derek Jeter. The Yankees swept the top three positions according to an anonymous poll of players by Sports Illustrated. Of course ratings are all subjective. Being overrated means you're not as good as advertised. But by what percentage? Are they overrated by 10 percent? By 50? Hey, I happen to think that Wilt Chamberlain was underrated. By the way, is it possible the other players are jealous? All the overrated guys have big contracts, or play for big market teams. You don't see any Pittsburgh Pirates on the list.

4. The Tools of Ignorance

There's been a ton of teeth gnashing over the Buster Posey injury on the Giants. He's the catcher who got run over at the plate and is now probably lost for the season. Some are calling for new rules to protect the catcher. Oakland general manager Billy Beane has told catcher Kurt Suzuki to avoid putting himself in harm's way. Yankees manager Joe Girardi suggests a "no contact" rule for spring training. Of course he's a former catcher. I'm sure Ray Fosse would have welcomed such a rule during the 1970 All Star Game when Pete Rose famously crashed into him. Obviously there will be no rule change. Where do you draw the line? Incidental contact is OK? Now you want umps to legislate intent? Not happening.

5. You Betcha

I present for your viewing pleasure Rodney Ward. He's a Manchester City soccer fan, who now has bitter rival Manchester United tattooed on his chest. Rather than bore you with the details, suffice to say, drinking and betting are a toxic combination.

Happy Birthday: Former Yankee (and 3 other teams) infielder Jerry Lumpe. 78.
Bonus Birthday: The Church Lady (among others) Dana Carvey. 56.

Today in Sports: 40-year old Babe Ruth announces his retirement. 1935.
Bonus Event: Ken Jennings begins a 74 game winning streak on Jeopardy! 2004.

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