HOLY GUACAMOLE! I believe this is what psychologists call stimulation overload; but it's what the Professional calls HEAVEN. With so much going on in sports last week, it's impossible for me to talk about everything I wanted to; so alas, potential prop and flopees such as Jaromir Jagr, the World Baseball Classic and Chad Kilger didn't make this week's list.

But rest assured that what you read below is undoubtedly and without question la crème de la crème, or to translate for our unilingual readers, this week's list is pretty damn good. So enjoy this delectable serving from the Professional's kitchen...mmmm...Emeril ain't got nothing on me!


Talking Football in March - Oh praise be! I just knew that August to February wasn't enough! But thanks to a little extra money under the cap and some risk taking GMs, fans of the National Football League have had plenty of water cooler material to keep them more than happy in the past few weeks.

With big names changing teams all over the place, the NFL aficianado has already reached that giddy stage of excitement usually reserved for the day before the Draft or the night of the first preseason game. Not to mention, the reaction of the gazillions of fantasy players who have a pretty big stake in these moves. Some may have lost faith in Edgerrin James (most after the realization, 'Holy Crap, am I really supposed to keep a Cardinals Running Back?') or have gained renewed confidence in Daunte Culpepper ('He'll be rollin' for the Fish, I just know it!').

With all this football chatter, and the draft just a few short weeks away, all I need is a Big and Rich TV Special and it might as well be November!!!

Brad Boyes - Another Professional Special, and by that I mean, I made him famous. It started with Jussi Jokinen, Ales Kotalik, and Ladislav Nagy, and now you can add Mr. Boyes to the list. Flash back to early December, while others in the Professional's hockey pool were picking up Aaron Asham and Bryan Muir, I went under the radar and scooped Mr. Boyes.

Now he's tearing up the league for the suddenly surging Bruins with 28 points in his last 23 games, including a hat-trick in his last outing versus Carolina. My goaltending woes may have cost Mr. Boyes his roster spot, but he still has the pride in knowing I made him famous!

Mr. Boyes should also be proud of being a member of the prestigious club of Toronto Maple Leaf first round draft picks having successful careers with other teams. Boyes as you probably recall, was traded with Alyn McCauley to San Jose in a 2002 deadline deal. But don't hang your heads Leafs fans, we still have Owen No----ah, dammit.

The Kansas Jayhawks and North Carolina Tarheels - You may be wondering, how can such a sports genius such as the Professional be propping teams that were greviously upset in the Greatest of All Tournaments? Well, it's quite simple actually: these teams gave us the thing we love most about the NCAAs. I'll give you a hint, it wears glass slippers and its ride turns into a pumpkin at midnight.

Unless, you had a deprived childhood, you know I'm talking about Cinderella.

All hail #13 Bradley and #11 George Mason! Fans of the Final Four love a Cinderella team to pull for early on, or at least until the inevitable happens and the Dukes and UCONNs of the world send them packing and get down to the real business. But honestly, whether it's Jason Kidd and Cal, Steve Nash and Santa Clara or last year's fav Bucknell, having an unexpected lower seed advancing is GOOD FOR THE TOURNAMENT. It adds to the excitement of an already super exciting month of basketball and I'd personally like to extend my thanks to Kansas and NC for their early exit.

And besides, the Tarheel's early exit now gives Roy Williams a chance to start training for his dual NFL career as a safety for the Dallas Cowboys and a receiver for the Detroit Lions. How does he do it?

Terrell Owens - GET OUT OF MY LIFE T.O.!!!! Mr. Owen's recent release and subsequent signing with the Dallas Cowboys ends a tumultuous relationship between the Tennessee-Chattanooga Choo-Choo and my Philadelphia Eagles; and now I can finally say GOODBYE AND GOOD RIDDANCE!

But let's shut down the negativity machine for a bit, and understand why this series of moves is a good thing. First of all, it gives me another reason to hate the Dallas Cowboys (I really didn't need another, but heck, when you're blessed with a bounty, I say DIG IN!).

And secondly, this signing spawned what is quite possibly the greatest hip-hop song ever recorded. If you haven't already, go to and turn the sound up - oh, you won't be disappointed. The beats are sensational, and the lyrics? So profound they could bring a grown man to tears. It appears as though Sweetness and the Fridge have some competition for cheesiest football rap of all time.


Terrell Owens - OK, so you really didn't think I was gonna be that easy on the egotistical cancer that ripped apart the black and green did you? Is it just me or does T.O. ending up in Dallas just have BAD KARMA written all over it? Here are my top 5 reasons why:

  1. Drew Bledsoe. I really don't think I need to elaborate on that one.
  2. At times, Bill Parcells had trouble handling the rollercoaster personality of the now departed Keyshawn Johnson. Newsflash guys, T.O. is Keyshawn x 3058! Can the Tuna do what Andy Reid couldn't?
  3. This signing keeps Mr. Owens in the Iggles Division, which means it gives Brian Dawkins, Jeremiah Trotter and Michael Lewis two games to seek their revenge and flatten T.O. every time he steps between the hashmarks.
  4. T.O. is now playing on the same team as the player (safety Roy Williams) whose horse-collar tackle almost ended Mr. Owens' 2004-05 season.
  5. Finally, we'll see how warm a welcome the fans in Big D give a man who once desecrated the sacred midfield star at Texas Stadium and forced George 'Ice' Teague to enact a little frontier justice on his ass.

Jim Nantz and Billy Packer - As mentioned above, I absolutely love the Final Four. But if there's one thing I hate about March Madness, it's the uneasy feeling I get knowing that when the big games start happening, this nauseating broadcast team will be taking the reigns.

Nantz is already on my bad side for his incoherent ramblings at the side of Phil Simms, but his constant chatter and hyperbole makes me seriously consider that Blue Jackets/Black Hawks game over on OLN.

"This is a huge milestone for Jim Calhoun, his first NCAA tournament quarter as a Hall of Famer!". Wow. Lucky there were no cinder blocks handy, or I might be in the market for a new TV.

Mr. Packer on the other hand really loves the game, and while enthusiasm may be a strong suit for many, it is most certainly Packer's downfall. Packer is a fan, but someone needs to tell him that he's being paid to be an analyst, not a fan. Billy P yelling things like 'THAT'S A BACKCOURT VIOLATION!!' and 'HURRY! INBOUND THE BALL!' make me think that an Uber-announce team of Pierre McGuire and Dick Vitale might do a better job. Ok, maybe not.

Curtis Sanford's MCL - First Ladislav's Nagy's weak meniscus and now Mr. Sanford's MCL decides it doesn't want to stay intact any longer. Now my fantasy season rests on the Swedish shoulders of Mikael Tellqvist and I'm sure Ed Belfour is due for a miraculous recovery from his back spasms!

Medial Collateral Ligament, you are now my least favourite of all the ligaments. Let that serve as a lesson to you.

Plagiarism - Where I come from plagiarism is a serious offense, and I will not stand idly by when others are trying to capitalize on forwardprogress' booming success. It's a dirty job, but somebody's got to do it.

So when scanning my daily dose of NCAA articles, I came across this piece of 'journalism' at a blog called 'Philadelphia Will Do' entitled Following the NCAA Tournament at Work (a guide).

Now correct me if I'm wrong (and I'm hardly ever wrong), but this piece possesses several similarities to Big Lumpy's piece from February 16, La Dolce Lumpy: Olympic Musings Part II. If you scroll about halfway down, you read about Lumpy's fail safe method for following the Olympics at work.

Now, the Lumpster was on hiatus down in the States this past week, so maybe there was some ghostwriting going on; but I'm pretty sure his thought processes down South didn't involve much more than 'pass the Jack Daniel's', so I'm thinking that possibility is highly unlikely. More likely, a blatant act of international plagiarism and I WON'T STAND FOR IT.

On a similar note, if you hit up the blog of the Zany Sports Lady and scroll down to the entry for March 14, you'll see some comments regarding the previous night's hockey action. All is well and good until you see lines like 'Props to Jonathan Cheechoo of the Sharks.' and 'Props also to Jarome Iginla of the Flames'.

Whoa Whoa Whoa sister. Clearly the use of the term 'Props' is a direct copy of the genius that is Props and Flops. Now, it's unclear on who first coined the term Props (some say Otis Redding when he wrote Satisfaction, others say Baltimore DJ Bill 'The Thrill' Hill did it), but with all this confusion surround the term, I'd say it's pretty safe to assume that I did it. So Zany Sports Lady, STOP USING MY WORD.

I do have to mention that I usually enjoy this blog. It is great to see someone down South write passionately about hockey, and even better that it is from a female perspective. I'm a forgiving man, so maybe I'll let this one offense slide. But start using 'Props' on a Monday and there will be hell to pay. You'll go from the Zany Sports Lady to The Professional's #1 Enemy Sports Lady and that just doesn't have the same ring to it.

They say imitation is the greatest form of flattery, but I tend to think a copius amount of compliments is.

Until next week, Trust me, I know what I'm talking about.


Mon 03/20/06, 1:09 pm EST



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