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2017

Why Edgar Martinez deserves to be in the Hall of Fame
He just got his number retired by the Mariners, and he probaby has more acclaim coming his way soon. Aug. 13

Eduardo Nunez has made a big splash in a short time
In just over a week, Nunez has joined a short group of small-time acquisitions who have made big-time impacts. Aug. 6

Adrian Beltre is, objectively, awesome
In a funny moment on his way to 3,000 hits, Beltre reminded us that he's a character, and that the umpire didn't deserve to be there. July 30

Dustin Pedroia is the thread that binds the Red Sox lineup together
We've officially reached the point where Pedroia has been so consistent for so long that it's easy to overlook how important he still is. July 23

Understanding the greatness of Craig Kimbrel
As it turns out, he blew a save the day before this ran and the day after I wrote it. But the rest stands —  he's been incredible and is on a rare path. July 16

The curious arbitration case of Ryan Spooner
I understand why Spooner is taking the Bruins to arbitration. I also understand why the team doesn't want to give him a raise. July 9

Where did these Milwaukee Brewers come from?
If I had to pick someone to make the Cubs' life difficult in the National League for 2017, I wouldn't have picked Milwaukee, I bet. June 18

Reds' Scooter Gennett latest to achieve baseball immortality
Scooter, meet Mark Whiten. You're both going to be talked about forever. June 11

Chris Sale is a modern-day Pedro
If he's not quite the master that Pedro Martinez was (no one is), he's the best week-to-week attraction on a pitcher's mound since Pedro's heyday. June 4

How Nashville became a legitimate hockey town
It didn't happen overnight, but nearly two decades of solid leadership led to this moment for the Predators. May 28

The Celtics' Game 2 loss was an all-time horror show
The season was still clearly a success at that point but, lord, that was hard to watch. May 21

The Celtics have become appointment television
This has been the case for a while, but the Celtics are worth watching as long as they're still playing. May 7

Grind-it-out Celtics facing rivalry series against the Wizards
Thank god the Celtics got past the Bulls and were able to give us a series of two teams who hate each other for some reason. April 30

How quick we are to forget Tuukka Rask's playoff successes
There were actual, full-time members of the Boston sports media who acted like 2017 was the first time Rask was great in the playoffs. April 23

Top-seeded Celtics already exceeded expectations
That's stretching it a bit, but heading into their first-round matchup with the Bulls, it was hard to ask for a better season. April 16

Lack of Stanley Cup doesn't tarnish Alex Ovechkin
At some point, Ovechkin is probably going to raise the Cup. But he's already amazing as it is. April 9

It's Opening Day, enjoy it
There is really nothing bad about baseball's Opening Day. April 2

Is this the best Red Sox outfield ever?
No it is not. March 26

A resurgent Panda would be fun to watch
Since most folks in New England don't seem to watch anything but the Red Sox, it might surprise them to know that the pre-Boston Pablo Sandoval was a blast. March 19

The New York Mets love a circus and Tim Tebow is their star attraction
I think Tim Tebow actually wants to be a professional baseball player, but the Mets don't really care about that. March 12

Will we ever have another repeat World Series champion?
We probably will, but this is a reminder that it's incredibly hard to do. March 5

Anton Khudobin will be needed in net down the stretch
As tempting as it is, driving Tuukka Rask into the ground trying to make the playoffs probably won't work. Feb. 26

How to fix the NHL All-Star Weekend, and the World Cup
I mean, they can start by not having the All-Star Game, but there's more to it than that. Feb. 19

Is baseball trying to turn extra innings into a shootout?
There's nothing quite like watching a sport attempt to fix something that isn't broken. Feb. 12

Isaiah Thomas' fourth quarter exploits are must-see TV
The above links within this site because a production error lopped off about a third of the column. That incorrectly truncated version is here. Feb. 5

GE ad on Celtics jerseys a step in the wrong direction
Forgive me for not celebrating the intrusion of an outside company on the best jersey in basketball. Jan. 29

Inconsistent defense is Bruins' biggest problem
Claude Julien might get the axe for a string of bad games, but it was always doomed thanks to a very young group on the blueline. Jan. 22

Oilers' Connor McDavid already a generational talent at age 20
Through his first 90 games or so, McDavid is keeping pace with some of the game's all-time greats. Jan. 15

Avery Bradley's upside could be his downfall with the Celtics
I'm not saying Bradley will be traded, just that a lot of teams would love to have him. Jan. 1

2016

There was Wayne Gretzky, and there was everyone else
The spotlight has rightly been on Jaromir Jagr's accomplishments, but it offers an opportunity to take in just how insane Gretzky was in his span. Dec. 25

Manfred, Silver showing how commissioners should work
Both the NBA and Major League Baseball avoided work stoppages and have kept the focus on the play on the field. That's really all it takes to run a league well. Dec. 18

Twenty-five years in, Jaromir Jagr won't slow down
I actually think it's been 27 years, but who's counting. Dec. 11

Russell Westbrook is mad, and that's great for NBA fans
I want pissed-off Westbrook to dominate the league for as long as there's a league. Dec. 4

The Spurs' extended dominance is something to behold
There are so few constants in the world, but Gregg Popovich keeping the Spurs at the top of the standings is one of them. Nov. 27

Don't panic yet, Celtics fans
The Celtics stumbled out of the gate without Al Horford and Jae Crowder, but that could be valuable later in the season. Nov. 20

Bruins have been shaky without Tuukka Rask in net
While the Bruins round into form, Rask is still thankfully there as their backbone. Nov. 13

Joy in Wrigleyville reminds us of the emotional power of sports
There are actually people out there complaining about the Cubs celebrating. That's the last stand of the miserable. Nov. 6

There's no Cliffs Notes for bullpen management
Pulling strings with the bullpen in the playoffs is one part crapshoot, one part feel.Oct. 16

Baseball is weird and the Red Sox aren't dead yet
There's a lot of strangeness that can occur in a five-game series, so of course Boston's season comes down to a Clay Buchholz start. Oct. 9

David Ortiz pulled it together in 2009 and made history
This is dedicated to every fool who wanted to bail on Ortiz at the first sign of turbulence. Oct. 2

Red Sox keep riding the Clay Buchholz coaster
Part of me hopes when we're both in our 40s, Buchholz is still hanging around, bouncing from the rotation to the bullpen and back like a skinny, right-handed Jesse Orosco. Sept. 25

Erstwhile ace David Price has finally rounded into form
My point was that Price has been good since June, but was still getting screamed at by fans and on the radio as if he was still bad. Sept. 11

Moncada joins select group of Red Sox prospects
Boston is trying to get a playoff spot and they're leaning on their top prospect to get them there. Sept. 4

The Cubs have taken over Chicago
Spending a weekend in Chicago was to see a city ready to explode if the Cubs can actually pull this off.Aug. 28

Betts and Bradley Jr. are playing like the next Lynn and Rice
This has been a year where there aren't enough good things to say about Mookie Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. Aug. 21

An ode to Prince Fielder, who made the game look fun
Having to see Fielder hang it up at 32 is terrible, so looking back at the good in his game is about all I can do. Aug. 14

The Rio Olympics are a horror show, but we'll watch anyway
Really, all Olympics are a nightmare, but this one is especially bad even by those standards. Aug. 7

Don't look now, but Dustin Pedroia is turning in one of his finest seasons
It's easy to get lost on a team with Ortiz going nuts every night, but Pedroia is back on his elite path. July 24

Why David Ortiz should be the American League MVP, and it's only July
Capping a ridiculous career with a ridiculous season would become even more ridiculous with that elusive MVP trophy. July 17

Portugal's win on SouthCoast: One fan's story
I don't know that I had honestly realized what Portugal winning a trophy would mean until it happened. July 11

Cristiano Ronaldo getting help from teammates in run to 2016 Euro final
Instead of just being Ronaldo vs. 11 guys, Portugal has tightened up its defense and is playing like a unit. July 10

Chiarelli's player preferences lead to another lopsided trade
I can usually follow Peter Chiarelli's logic, but trading Taylor Hall the way he did is almost indefensible. July 3

Steven Wright's rise reminiscent of Tim Wakefield in 1995
Maybe every 20 years or so from here on out, the Red Sox will have a knuckleballer come out of (almost) nowhere and dominate. June 26

Behold the glory that is Big Papi
The first 10 weeks of the season have been monstrous for David Ortiz, who seems determined to have the greatest final season Boston's ever seen. June 19

Can Ronaldo and Portugal break through at Euro 2016?
I don't really know Portugal's chances, but I know few things in sports would me as much to a lot of people as Portugal winning a major trophy. June 12

What does the future hold for Joe Kelly and Clay Buchholz?
As of this writing, neither pitcher was in the starting rotation for the Red Sox, and that might be better for them and the team. June 5

Ichiro maintains stylish play on run to 3,000 hits
Having two 4-hit games in a week in his early 40s is just the most recent ridiculous accomplishment by Ichiro. May 29

On the occasion of his Hall of Fame induction, a tribute to Jason Varitek
Jason Varitek was my favorite Red Sock after Pedro Martinez went to New York because he could do things behind the plate no one else could. May 22

Joe Thornton still plugging away in San Jose
More than 10 years after being traded from Boston, Thornton is still a point-per-game player and looking for his first shot at the Stanley Cup. May 15

Watch out, the Chicago Cubs might be historically good
It's early in the season but good lord the Cubs have been murdering everyone. May 8

Celtics inched ever closer to contender status this season
The ending was disappointing, but it's not hard to see the progress this team made. May 1

Sit back and enjoy everything that is Adrian Beltre
There have been few third basemen as good as Beltre and I'll bet none of them as weirdly entertaining as him. April 25

The 76ers' Sam Hinkie had a unique vision, but he won't see it through
I don't know how Sam Hinkie talked the 76ers into going along with his plan as long as they did, but it's over now. April 10

Three games on Opening Day? I approve
There are a lot of changes to tradition in baseball. Having six teams start on the Sunday isn't such a bad one. April 3

How Bartolo Colon keeps proving baseball wrong
I don't actually know how he's doing it, but I'm very happy he is. March 27

Hey Goose, baseball players just want to have fun
I might have been the only person to write about Gossage and not reference "Old Man Yells At Cloud." March 20

Boston Celtics are moving in the right direction
Even with their 14-game home streak at an end, the Celtics are still heading the right way. March 13

After a confusing trade deadline, where are the Bruins headed?
After Feb. 29, Loui Eriksson was still a Bruin, but the wisdom in the rest of Don Sweeney's moves wasn't immediately obvious. March 6

Isn't it possible that Hanley Ramirez won't be terrible at first base?
I'm just saying that it's within the realm of possibility that a professional baseball player who played shortstop for years might be okay. Feb. 28

Enjoy the Celtics as they're currently built
Danny Ainge didn't pull the trigger on a team-changing trade at the deadline. That might not be so bad. Feb. 21

Bruins follow Marchand's lead as 5th-year forward takes on responsibility
Brad Marchand has stepped into Milan Lucic's goal-scoring void, but his entire game has taken on a more serious tone. Feb. 14

John Scott in the All-Star Game? That's precisely what the NHL needs
Leave it to the NHL to take a fan movement and crap all over it before finally giving in. So leave it to the NHL to continue being the worst-run league in North America. Jan. 31

Living in the moment, but looking forwrd to spring
It's the peak of the NFL playoffs, which means that I'm probably missing baseball more than usual. Jan. 24

NFL owners win again, with new stadium in Los Angeles
There is no bigger scam in the country than what the NFL continually pulls in jerking cities around and getting football palaces built on demand. Jan. 17

Jae has emerged from the Crowd(er)
Jae Crowder has quickly ascended from toss-in from the Rondo trade to key contributor on the playoff-bound Celtics. Jan. 10

Dave Henderson's legacy will be his smile
Baseball lost a huge personality with the death of the former Red Sox and A's center fielder. Jan. 3

2015

Tuukka Rask has bounced back from his disastrous October
Mild panic aside, Rask is one of the better goalies in the NHL, and his recovery only confirms that. Dec. 20

The impressiveness of a double-overtime loss to the Celtics
There aren't any moral victories, but there are markers of improvement to be found with hanging with one of the best teams in the league. Dec. 13

Celtics start listening to Brad Stevens, and the wins start rolling in
After three listless games in a row, the Celtics suddenly returned to taking smart shots and playing tight defense, and they snapped back into place. Nov. 29

More memories are ahead for David Ortiz
2016 will be Big Papi's last trip around the bases, and a few of them will certainly be earth-shattering. Nov. 22

Celtics searching for stability after 4-4 start
They haven't come out of the gate like bulls, but the Celtics are still on pace to improve on last season. Nov. 15

Is Colin Miller the Bruins' defenseman of the future?
About one month into the season and Colin Miller is doing everything he can on Boston's young blueline. Nov. 8

Royals take a novel approach to hitting —  just swing
The Kansas City Royals are the opposite of a "three true outcomes" team, and that's what makes them so much fun to watch. Nov. 1

Can the Mets put the past behind them?
The history of the New York Mets is one disaster after another, except for when they win the pennant. Oct. 27

Playoff baseball is a cruel mistress in Texas
The Rangers and Astros each had absolute one-inning disasters in the ALDS, helping the Blue Jays and Royals move on. Oct. 18

Even Game 162 a chance at something magical
There's no reason to think anything special would happen in the last Red Sox game of 2015. But there's a chance. Oct. 4

Fighting back against the insidious daily fantasy racket
I feel like there's a chance FanDuel will interrupt my description here. Sept. 27

Chicago Blackhawks bungling Patrick Kane mess
I guess the Blackhawks are trying to say that there's no right way to handle a looming sexual assault charge. Sept. 20

Donaldson or Trout for MVP? You can't go wrong selecting either
All I really want during awards season is to avoid the madness that was the Trout-Cabrera debates of 2012 and '13. Sept. 13

Theo Epstein's genius has revived the Cubs and is still benefiting the Red Sox
The Cubs' recent run is obvious enough, but watching Mookie Betts and company lead the next wave in Boston is more evidence that Epstein knows what he's doing. Aug. 30

New boss, better play has Red Sox fans finding hope
I don't actually know what other fans might think of the Sox as September approaches, but they certainly seem to be better set for the future than they did in May. Aug. 23

New-look Blue Jays bringing baseball fever back to Canada
It's always good when new cities get back into the playoff mix. Joining Pittsburgh and Kansas City in the recent fun is Toronto, who are riding a steamroller right now. Aug. 16

Steven Wright and the grand return of the knuckleball
In a year where the Red Sox have had some spotty starting pitching, Wright has helped stabilize things, and he's done it one of baseball's more eccentric pitches. Aug. 9

Padres ever hopeful
The San Diego Padres made a lot of noise over the winter, but by the time the trade deadline hit, they weren't any closer to winning the division. Aug. 3

Pedro Martinez' Hall of Fame induction will cap an amazing career
On the day he'll get his plaque and give his speech, I expected nothing but greatness from a man who approached his entire career with brilliant artistry. July 26

Mike Trout is the big fish in Major League Baseball's small pond
Quickly, the gap between Trout and everyone else in baseball is so great, it makes my head spin. July 19

Celtics fans should calm down, they're better now than in April
There were enough snarky and simple-minded cries after the draft towards Celtics GM Danny Ainge that it felt necessary to remind folks that they've already improved. July 12

Will Rick Porcello ever figure it out, or will the Red Sox regret their $100M pitcher?
Porcello has struggled through the first half of his first season in Boston, and the trends aren't pointing in his favor. July 5

Could a move to the bullpen resurrect the Red Sox' Joe Kelly?
Kelly has seen ups and downs since coming to Boston, and his best moments suggest that he could be a force out of the bullpen. June 28

Not that it matters, but the All-Star Game voting is fine as it is
There was some serious grumbling when eight Kansas City Royals were in position to start the All-Star Game. There shouldn't be, because it doesn't matter. June 20

The tortured history of Bruins coaches before Claude Julien
In addition to winning the Stanley Cup in 2011, Julien should be remembered for breaking the ridiculous string of coaches who were unnecessarily fired early in Boston. June 14

There's only one certainty in this year's NBA Finals: A new champ
The NBA playoffs take forever, but at least this year, it'll end with the 10th team since 1980 to win a title. May 31

Hey ump, take a back seat
When an umpire decides to let everyone on the field know who's boss, it's the game that suffers. May 24

Lundqvist looking to add a cup to his resume
Henrik Lundqvist is in rare company at the moment as one of the greater goalies to never lift the Stanley Cup. May 17

Patrick Kane + 3 seconds = trouble
A moment where Patrick Kane was allowed to terrorize the Minnesota Wild provided a window into his entire game. May 10

Brock Holt an invaluable piece to Red Sox' success
It's fun to watch Holt play like the best guy on the field, no matter where John Farrell sticks him. May 3

Win or lose, Celtics season should be considered a success
The impending sweep at the hands of the Cavaliers was less important than the way the Celtics played all season, including the first three games of the series. April 26

How Danny Ainge's midseason moves sparked Celtics' hot finish
I have to be honest, this was really about how Brad Stevens took a cast of spare parts and turned them into one of the hotter teams in the NBA, but this works too, I suppose. April 19

Spurs aging as gracefully as ever
Thanks to Gregg Popovich being almost supernaturally good at his job, the Spurs are riding an incredible hot streak on the eve of the NBA playoffs. April 12

Rejoice! Baseball season is upon us
This was a very long winter and the NFL is garbage, so thank science for baseball. April 5

Kris Bryant could be final piece for Cubs
Theo Epstein's three-year makeover of the Chicago Cubs is already paying off, and Bryant could wind up being the centerpiece of a future championship. March 29

Is Marcus Smart the next Celtics star?
There are times where Marcus Smart is the best player on the court, and times where he hits a guy below the belt. He's a work in progress. March 22

2015 Bruins feel like 2006 Red Sox
When a team struggles, there are calls from the frustrated masses to blow it up. But sometime, it's just not the year. March 8

Here's wishing Kevin Garnett a happy ending
The NBA trade deadline freed Garnett from a depressing coda in Brooklyn, and lets him finish out with pride in Minnesota. March 1

Former All-Star Bryan LaHair looks to reignite career in Red Sox camp
Scroll through the list of non-roster invitees to Spring Training, and there's always a guy like LaHair looking for another shot. Feb. 22

Watch the Celtics, it's a surprisingly good time
They're in the middle of rebuilding, but whoever is on Brad Stevens' roster that day seems committed to putting on a show. Feb. 15

Remembering Jackie Bradley Jr., the Red Sox' forgotten man
Bradley Jr.'s progress was pushed into the spotlight thanks to a great Spring Training in 2013, but he's on the outside looking in on the Red Sox' outfield shuffle. Feb. 8

There's a chink in the NFL's armour
The Super Bowl has become a decadent celebration for a league that takes itself far too seriously, instead of being about two good football teams. Feb. 1

The Islanders are no longer an afterthought
Sitting in first place in the Atlantic Division at the All-Star Break for the first time in 20 years, the Islanders are looking like a threat for the first time in more than two decades. Jan. 25

Hockey fights are on the way out, and that's not a bad thing
Fighting is becoming less and less common, but instead of a jarring new rule to outlaw them, the game seems to be getting to a place where it just isn't as necessary. Jan. 18

Great players are great, regardless of HOF voting
Pedro Martinez's induction into the Hall of Fame was certainly a personal triumph, but it really shouldn't mean anything. Jan. 11

Winston's struggles a study in schadenfreude
Watching Jameis Winston flop around and fumble in the Rose Bowl was weirdly satisfying, but that's not necessarily a good feeling to have. Jan. 3

2014

Marco Scutaro's career always scooted under the radar
The 39-year-old All-Star second baseman had a career-threatening back surgery, so this prompted a look-back at his unique career. Dec. 28

Rondo's farewell was a long time coming
Rajon Rondo's trade to Dallas was a surprise in the moment, but was really just an inevitable conclusion to his Boston era. Dec. 21

Washington the perfect fit for Pierce
Free from a bad plan in Brooklyn, Paul Pierce is now an important part to push the young Wizards forward. Dec. 14

Revs riding playoff run to popularity
The Revolution have felt like the best-kept secret in New England for a long time, but that could be changing. Dec. 7

LeBron speculation is fun, but it's still November
Little is as satisfying as watching LeBron James struggle, but there's a nagging feeling (and history) that suggests the Cavs' recent issues will be temporary. Nov. 23

Kershaw's MVP award a win for pitchers and common sense
This is the second time in four years that a pitcher has walked away with one of the league's MVP awards, and hopefully that's the start of a trend. Nov. 16

Dougie Hamilton delivering ahead of schedule
With Zdeno Chara out, the Bruins' 21-year-old defenseman has stepped up and helped fill those very large skates. Nov. 9

Celtics playing under the radar despite Rondo's return
Rajon Rondo looked back to full strength in the Celtics season opener, but it still just made a ripple as the team started quietly. Nov. 2

Remember when the Freak was unhittable?
The Giants are working on winning a World Series, but Tim Lincecum has mostly been a spectator. That was unthinkable even a couple of years ago. Oct. 26

The Royals' record of ineptness isn't all that inept
The 29 years the Royals spent between trips to the World Series was certainly frustrating for their fans, but it's nowhere near the worst run in the sport. Oct. 19

Bobby Robins finally fights his way to NHL debut
Robins is a 32-year-old rookie who made the Bruins roster for opening night. He worked a long time for that moment. Oct. 12

What a long, strange head-trip this Royals playoff run is
The Kansas City Royals entered this day with a shot to knock out the Los Anaheim Angels, messing up all my long-held notions of them being awful. Oct. 5

Don't forget to say goodbye to Paul Konerko
The White Sox captain is retiring after 18 years in the league, and he's doing so as quietly as he's done everything else in his incredible career. Sept. 28

There's no destroying the monster that has become the NFL
There is apparently no business more powerful and unstoppable than the NFL, and they could not care less about what anyone else thinks on them. Enjoy your football this Sunday. Sept. 21

Are the Atlanta Braves dangerous or done?
The Braves started out hot and have looked like a boring team stuck in a ditch since. But because they haven't bottomed out, they've painted themselves into a corner. Sept. 7

Epstein's patience soon to pay off for the Cubs
Theo Epstein had a gigantic task waiting for him when he took over the Cubs, but three years into his tenure, the team is starting to show they're close to becoming elite. Aug. 31

David Ortiz, the saving grace of the 2014 Boston Red Sox
In 1983, with the Red Sox out of contention, a lot of fans kept tuning in just to see Carl Yastrzemski defy time for another year. There's a little of that with Ortiz, 31 years later. Aug. 24

New commish Manfred's first task: Keep 'em on the field
Baseball elected Rob Manfred as the next commissioner, to succeed Bud Selig next season. And as long as baseball is played every year, he'll be doing his job. Aug. 17

Phillies' mistakes are cautionary tale
It's easy to compare the A's and Tigers loading up on pitchers to the Phillies' four aces from 2011, except that the A's and Tigers know what they're doing. Aug. 12

The literary stylings of the 2014 Sox
There's a reason there are so many great (and bad) books on the Red Sox: throughout their history, they're always interesting, good, bad, great and horrifying. 2014 is going to make a great book someday. Aug. 3

The sad, sordid history of Red Sox rookie catchers
I don't know how "sordid" it really is, but Boston hasn't had a lot of great (or good) catchers come up through the system in the past 30 years. July 27

Turning a cheek to the ever-expanding world of sports vitriol
The moral of this story is that there are so many miserable dudes who decided to work in sports media, especially in Boston. July 20

Don't listen to the trolls, the U.S. is embracing soccer
The first versions of this column was much more explicit in calling out the gremlins who live to crap on the game. But I thought better and I toned it down before I turned it in. July 6

U.S., Germany don't pull a repeat of 1982 sham game
A lot of people were discussing whether the U.S. and Germany would agree to a tie in order for both to move on in the World Cup. That would never happen, and now Germany gets to answer for its sins in 1982 against Algeria. June 29

Why my dad roots for the U.S. and frustrates the rest of my family
I have a lot of futbol snobs in my family who all have very loud opinions. My dad has never been one of them. June 22

Don't be mad at Jurgen Klinsmann
After the U.S. manager said bluntly that the country can't win this World Cup, a lot of people got a lot of mileage over saying "that's not how we talk in this country." They're idiots. June 15

Criticizing the Sox' draft? Get a life
This headline is a lot more aggressive than I meant to be, but basically, it's really hard and probably dumb to criticize any baseball team's draft in the moment. June 8

Rangers lack star power but bring class into Stanley Cup final
This whole column was inspired by Martin St. Louis, who is putting some of the final flourishes on his Hall of Fame resume. June 2

Red Sox suffering from post-championship hangover
The notion of a team falling back a step after winning a championship isn't a new one; it's happened a lot in the past decade, and the Red Sox are just the latest. May 25

Rash of Tommy John surgeries a plague on MLB
It seems like every young pitcher who throws hard and can dominate winds up losing a year or more to a major arm surgery. Except Justin Verlander for some reason. May 18

Bruins' game isn't pretty, but it's effective
The Boston-Montreal series is a prototypical clash of styles, with Montreal zipping around the ice and the Bruins trying their best to bulldoze their way to the net. May 10

Sterling's ouster puts all owners on notice
One good aspect of Donald Sterling opening his mouth and letting us all know the vile contents within is that everyone knows how repulsive he is now. May 4

Lucic is key to Bruins' physical, choking style
Milan Lucic was a bulldozer through the first four games of the Bruins' opening series against the Detroit Red Wings. April 26

Losing at home to open a series? Nothing new for these Bruins
The Bruins lost Game 1 of their first playoff series to the Detroit Red Wings. That's almost typical for them. April 20

Jose Abreu provides glimpse behind Cuban baseball's curtain
Basically, White Sox rookie Jose Abreu hit the cover off a baseball, and then this column happened. April 13

Imagining Major League Baseball expansion
Right now, there are 15 teams in each league, which means interleague play takes place all season. Ideally, two teams should be eliminated, but what if baseball expanded instead? April 6

Baseball takes center stage on Opening Day
When the Dodgers open up with the San Diego Padres tonight, it'll mark a welcome return for baseball and a reminder that this isn't much different than it's ever been. March 30

No nonsense game sits well with Bruins coach Julien
Sidebar written on deadline contrasting the clean, tough game the Bruins and Blackhawks played, and the mess that the Bruins played against Montreal earlier that week. March 28

Spring Training stats quickly fade
Worrying about Spring Training has always seemed stupid to me. But that became even more pronounced when I realized how hard it was to find March stats after it ends. March 23

With heavy workload, Bruins' Rask has lived up to his promise
There have been a number of great goalies in Boston in the past 15 or 20 years, but Rask has distanced himself from the pack with his ability to shoulder so much of the load. March 15

How Brandon Workman wound up with Koji Uehara's World Series loss
The inspiration for this tale of a misappropriated stat goes to my friend Shawn Wright, a postdoctural fellow in Geology at Auburn. March 9

The Rondo controversey much ado about nothing
The worst aspects of sports radio were on full display when it was decided that Rajon Rondo needed to answer to the overweight masses for a thing that shouldn't even have been a thing. March 2

The case for Olympic hockey
Once again, in the midst of an incredible Olympic hockey tournament, the NHL is wringing its hands over whether or not to send its players to the next Olympics, and that's ridiculous. Feb. 16

From the troubling to the bizarre, the Winter Olympics have taken on a strange feel
I think a lot of people want to ask the folks in Sochi if the knew when the Olympics would be held, what with upside-down toilets and cardboard hotel rooms. but they also have anti-gay legislature, which is sickening. And we're still watching. Feb. 9

By halftime, I'll know who to root for
In years where there's no favorite team or easily identified heroes or villains, it eventually becomes obvious who to pull for. Feb. 2

In search of defensemen, Bruins find a gem in Kevan Miller
He looked the part in preseason, but his play since being called up from Providence has surprised a lot of people. The Bruins signed him to a two-year contract as a result. Jan. 26

Broncos-Pats carries history, but mostly in regular season
I wa a little surprised to see that the Patriots and Broncos had only met three times in the playoffs before the Brady/Manning AFC Championship Game. But there's more history to be found. Jan. 19

Wade Redden made the most of a bad situation
Redden announced an end to his 16-year professional career, which included two years in exile in the AHL. Jan. 12

Stadium Series lacks 'Winter Classic' feeling
The Winter Classic is probably the greatest victory the NHL has scored in the past 20 years, so of course they're trying to ruin it now. Jan. 5

2013

Watching Youkilis sail off to Japan
Kevin Youkilis will likely play the 2014 season in Japan, and this looks at how some other former Red Sox fared in the Far East. Dec. 22

A look back at the dominating career of Doc Halladay
Roy Halladay quietly signed a one-day contract with the Toronto Blue Jays and retired, and one of the greatest arms ever leaves the game. Dec. 15

Ellsbury's departure no reason for vitriol
Before Jacoby Ellsbury put the pen down on his new contract with the Yankees, Red Sox fans were freaking out and the media were delighting in having a new villain. And it's stupid. Dec. 8

The NFL heading down an unwatchable road
It's hard to keep watching the NFL every Sunday when almost every game is an ungodly borefest.Dec. 1

A plea for the end of the shootout
It's been nearly a decade now and the NHL is still settling hockey games with a ridiculous skills competition at the end. Well done. Nov. 24

Celtics may not be great, but I'll be watching
The Celtics have been bad before, and I've tuned in and tuned out here and there. But I like what Brad Stevens is doing so far with this bunch. Nov. 17

Is Torey Krug what the Bruins have been searching for?
The rare case of a headline that ends with a question mark, and then answer is still, "yes." Krug has not let up since being called up in the 2013 playoffs. Nov. 10

How Big Papi harkens back to Willie 'Pop' Stargell
David Ortiz's performance in the 2013 World Series was practically unheard of, but his play and his personality do remind me of Willie Stargell in the '79 World Series. Nov. 3

No matter how it ends, Series story a tale worth telling
Two games into the 2013 World Series already saw plenty of classic moments that hint the Series is probably going to seven games no matter what. Oct. 26

Uehara's journey mirrors rest of team
The "team" in this case is the 2013 Red Sox, and Koji Uehara's dominance out of the closer role offers a nice timeline to their success. Oct. 19

Dodgers-Red Sox 2012 trade a rare win-win
The headline is a little misleading, because my point was that they're both better now, but the Dodgers are going to like this trade less and less as the years go on. Alas. Oct. 13

Animosity between players, management is long gone with Bruins
Not long ago, the Bruins would've dragged Dennis Seidenberg through the mud and he would've left disgruntled before signing a new contract. That's over, thankfully. Oct. 6

Jarome Iginla gets into the swing in Boston
Deadline column on Iginla's first game with the Boston Bruins, which saw him get a huge ovation after his first fight in the black and gold. Oct. 4

Tim Thomas ready to prove his worth
The former Bruins goalie is returning from a year-long layoff and trying to find his game with the Florida Panthers. Whatever happens, it should be interesting. Sept. 29

One-game playoff anything but ideal
The short version: Baseball's idea of having two wild cards play a one-game playoff in each league is stupid and needs to end. I'm sure it won't, though. Sept. 22

Sox planted seeds of hope and grew greatness
The best part of the Red Sox' stranglehold on first place as September rolls through is that it's quieted down the negative din that dominates coverage of the team. For now, anyway. Sept. 15

Dennis Eckersley puts the 'color' in color commentary
With Jerry Remy stepping aside for the rest of the 2013 season for personal reasons, Dennis Eckersley has been filling in alongside Don Orsillo, and he's been a riot. Sept. 8

Ugly side of football always lurking
The NFL paid out more than $750 million to retired football players in a settlement, but the players who are left to deal with their ailments are still losing. Sept. 1

'Sandlot' screening was special
For the movie's 20th anniversary and in an effort to make me feel old, Fenway Park hosted a screening of The Sandlot, and it was just about a perfect night. Aug. 25

Yankees didn't need saving, but Rivera still generated excitement
I like breaking down small moments that really don't have much to do with a specific game and more to do with watching the game in general. And Mariano Rivera is awesome. Aug. 18

Jonny brings joy back to Fenway
Jonny Gomes has been a hurricane for the Red Sox, coming off the bench, making key plays, getting big hits and obviously having fun the entire time. Aug. 11

Pirates aim to sink stigma
I can't think of too many scenarios better for baseball than having the Pirates back in the playoffs. A Pirates-Orioles World Series (and a rematch of '79) would be even better. Aug. 3

Pedroia's extension a bright spot for baseball
There's a lot of negativity in baseball coverage thanks to a few steroid scandals. But they're minor in the grand scope of the game. July 28

Introductions highlight lackluster All-Star Game spectacle
The ridiculousness surrounding baseball's All-Star Game is pretty brutal, and it's the reason I basically refuse to watch 90 percent of it. July 14

Celtics, Bruins making the right choices —  bold ones
In the same week, the Celtics hired 36-year-old Brad Stevens away from Butler and the Bruins cut ties with their 21-year-old phenom. But the basketball and hockey gods don't reward those who play it safe. July 7

Ference made his mark on Boston
Following the Bruins' loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Final came the not-unexpected news that Andrew Ference would be leaving at the end of the year. He won't be forgotten. June 30

Still a season to remember for the Bruins
Written on deadline the night they lost Game 6 and the Stanley Cup to the Chicago Blackhawks. June 25

Bruins aim to get back to tight-checking style of playoff hockey
Game 4 saw the Bruins making sloppy passes, coughing up the puck in the neutral zone and failing to clear their own end. They still almost won, but that's not their game. June 22

Future unwritten for Bruins
I was thinking about Joe Strummer a day or two after the Bruins' epic loss in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals, and it turned into this. June 15

Gregory Campbell emodies the Boston mentality
Famously, Campbell dove to block an Evgeni Malkin shot, broke his leg and kept skating. That mentality is part of what has the Bruins in the Stanley Cup Finals again. June 9

Buchholz makes Red Sox-Yankees exciting
There is nothing as boring as an early-season Red Sox-Yankees game, especially when ESPN has the rights. But with Clay Buchholz on the mound, it approaches being watchable, at least. June 2

NHL playoffs demand spotlight
How little do I pay attention to other sports while the Bruins are playing for the Stanley Cup? The Red Sox were almost no-hit in Chicago and I didn't have a clue. May 26

In praise of Patrice
I can imagine the Bruins minus any of their guys and being okay except for two — Zdeno Chara, because he's the anchor of the defense, and Patrice Bergeron, because there's no one else like him. May 19

Boston's Mr. Clutch
When the calendar flips and the Bruins are in the playoffs, David Krejci wakes up, and only broken bones seem to slow him down. May 12

NHL needs to get dirty hits out of game
Ottawa's Eric Gryba's monstrous hit on Montreal's Lars Eller was just the latest example of why hits to the head needs to be taken out of hockey forever. May 5

Enjoying the feel-good Red Sox
For a team who has conjured up few good momeories (for most people) since Sept. 2011, the current Red Sox are doing their best to put all that in the distant past. April 28

Life slowly settling back into normalcy
The bombing of the Boston Marathon shook my home to its core. But we're still here, and we're carrying on with our lives, with help from plenty of places. April 21

The development of Jose Iglesias continues
He's been sent down to Pawtucket, but the future for the Red Sox' Cuban prospect looks as bright as it ever has. His day will come. April 14

Hoping for a quick recovery from Patrice Bergeron
More than anyone else on the team, even Zdeno Chara, the Bruins rely on Bergeron. And he's a good dude. So here, I'm hoping he comes back from a concussion relatively quickly. April 7

Many reasons to be hopeful on Opening Day
The Red Sox are about to kick off the 2013 seasons with a new approach and plenty of new faces, so let's take a break from the constant stream of negativity, shall we? March 31

Baseball needs more captains
David Wright was named captain of the New York Mets shortly before the start of the season —  a rare solid move on the Mets' part. March 24

What is there to actually like about Dwight Howard?
Moody, selfish, oblivious, lazy, etc., are some of the terms sometimes associated with Dwight Howard by me just now. Is misunderstood there, too? March 17

Just how dominating is Mariano Rivera?
A random stat that flew my way — relating to Rivera and the moon — led to a quick look at some impressive numbers as the closer prepares for his last season in the majors. March 9

From ice to notepad, a line for the ages
When the Bruins put Tyler Seguin with Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron at the start of the 2011-12 season, I noticed that it might be one of my favorite lines ever. A year later, and they're far and away Boston's best unit. March 3

Pedro a welcome addition to Red Sox
The 2013 spring training season opened with Pedro Martinez holding court with the Red Sox in Fort Myers, and they are all the better for it. Feb. 24

Can't fathom why the Redskins haven't changed name yet
The Washington Redskins aren't the only team with an offensive Native American nickname, but they're clearly the worst, and they're proud of it. Feb. 17

Tim Thomas made many memories — on the ice
Tim Thomas got caught up in a lot of nonsense over his politics and his sabbatical in his last year in Boston. But he'll be remembered for his brilliance in net. Feb. 10

Celtics built to compete without Rondo
Not to say that the Celtics would be better without Rondo, because that's stupid. But they're a well-balanced, well-coached team, and it was my belief that they'd make life difficult for a few teams. Feb. 3

Rask belongs in Bruins' net
A look at Tuukka Rask and his opportunity to finally be a no. 1 goaltender in the NHL. Jan. 27

Te'o just another mess in our gawking society
In the matter of an hour, Manti Te'o went from football prospect to reality TV sideshow. And that's how it always goes. Jan. 20

Lesson learned from Lance Armstrong's fall
In 2005, I wrote a column defending Armstrong against his detractors. And yes, that was incorrect. Jan. 13

Hall of Fame rejects Clemens, Bonds
I chipped in my opinion with two of my Standard-Times colleagues on the Baseball Writers' Association of America's failure to elect anyone to the Hall of Fame. In brief, they shouldn't be voting, anyway. Jan. 10

Bowls bring out best, worst in college sports
I'm usually torn between trying to not encourage the sleazy enterprise that is college football, and actually watching and enjoying the games. I don't think I'm alone there. Jan. 6

Paul Pierce still doing it all for struggling Celtics
Through ups and downs and constant role changes, I've been impressed with the way Paul Pierce has survived in a fickle league. Jan. 1

2012

Patriots likely headed to Super Bowl
I'm no fan of the headline (that's not exactly what I meant) but yes, in that moment, the Patriots looked pretty good. Dec. 23

Red Sox on the right path
They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. With that in mind, it's nice to see Boston trying a new path to success. Dec. 16

Not wasting any more time for NHL dunces to end lockout
At some point, it's just an exercise in frustration when you're just waiting for idiots to hammer out a simple issue. No thank you. Dec. 9

Rondo is Boston's most fascinating athlete
The guy who single-handedly pulled me back into basketball was Rajon Rondo, because I have a thing for unique, brilliant talent. There's no one like him, suspension or not. Dec. 2

Rex Ryan deserves every minute of his misery
I find little as entertaining as watching this bully struggle to explain the mess he's created in New York. Nov. 25

NFL injuries keep piling up
The headline I would've put would've written would be "Brutal injuries will be the end of the NFL," because the insane state of this game is not tenable. Nov. 18

Not hard to find hockey during NHL lockout
A trip to Providence to catch the Baby Bruins served as a nice reminder of the many hockey options that exist outside of the NHL, which Gary Bettman continues to hold hostage. Nov. 11

Tired of the NBA forcing us to like LeBron
I don't see what's so likable about LeBron James, and I certainly don't appreciate ESPN, TNT and Nike going to extremes to make me love the guy. Nov. 4

Rooting a Classic problem
Before the World Series started, I figured I would be rooting for the Detroit Tigers. But as soon as it actually started, I flip-flopped hard and went all in on the Giants. Huh. Oct. 28

Justin Verlander is a freak of nature
Looking ahead to the 2012 World Series, one of the things to look out for was how Justin Verlander would perform, and if he could cement his status as the best pitcher of his time. Oct. 21

Bettman's poor leadership knows no limits
As the NHL began canceling regular season hockey games, I lost my patience with the entire lockout and pointed a finger at the man in charge of the previous three lockouts. Oct. 7

Scab refs introduced NFL to anarchy
While asking important questions, like why a league drowning in money is crying poor, I had a little fun with the much-maligned replacement referees, with the real officials returning to the field. Sept. 30

Glad to see Branch return
The Patriots re-signed Deion Branch before their Week 3 game against Baltimore, and three weeks after cutting him at the end of training camp. It was a welcome return, by all accounts. Sept. 23

Oakland enjoying a season for the ages
With a crew of castoffs and rookies, the Oakland A's have been a contender and, at the time of this column, had a better record than the New York Yankees. Sept. 16

Bettman setting course for NHL lockout
The NHL has seen unprecedented success in the past few seasons, and the idea that the commissioner of the league would look to sink it in order to grab a bigger cut upset me. Sept. 9

Hope springs eternal with Bard in September
Daniel Bard was recalled to the Red Sox after a season that saw him lose his fastball and lose his place on the team. How is he going to respond? Sept. 2

Rays working on a September sequel in the AL East
At the time of this writing, there was real reason to think the Rays might bump the Yankees into Wild Card land. It was a fun thought. Aug. 26

No-hitters a boom for baseball
The idea that there are too many no-hitters, or that they're no longer special because of the volume, are both ludicrous. No-hitters are the best. Aug. 19

Playoff Red Sox not as strange as you think
Have the 2012 Red Sox underperformed? Absolutely. But the notion that they don't have a shot, or that they're a terrible team, is flawed. Aug. 12

NBC doing disservice to Olympics, viewers
The return of my column, now fantastically featured on Sundays! Here, I point out some of the ways NBC is insulting the American viewer with its coverage of the London Olympics. Aug. 5, 2012

Rookie reporter holds his own with the big boys
A week before the Patriots met the Giants for Super Bowl XLII, the Standard-Times asked me to recall my experience covering their first legendary matchup in 2008. Jan. 30, 2012

2011

Thomas responds, Luongo doesn't
After nearly a week of yapping, Roberto Luongo again laid an egg on the TD Garden ice, while Tim Thomas was nearly unbeatable. Two days later, the Bruins won the Stanley Cup for the first time in 39 years. June 14, 2011

Thomas protects the crease, delivers a shutout
Goalie Tim Thomas responded to criticism for his style of play, stopping 38 shots, starting scraps and backstopping the Bruins to a 4-0 win that tied the Stanley Cup finals at two games apiece. June 9, 2011

Bruins respond to Horton hit, now it's NHL's turn
After Aaron Rome's late hit to right winger Nathan Horton, the Boston Bruins responded with eight goals in the third game of the Stanley Cup finals. Rome was suspended for the remainder of the series the next day. June 7, 2011

2008

Moss quieted by Giants' 'D,' Super Bowl loss
Randy Moss was seething after the New England Patriots' loss to the Giants. Written on deadline from Super Bowl XLII at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. Feb. 4, 2008

'First line of defense' fails Brady
The Patriots' offensive line, a strength all season, collapses under pressure from the Giants' defense. Written on deadline from Super Bowl XLII at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. Feb. 4, 2008

Giants running down their upset dreams
A look at the New York Giants' running game leading up to Super Bowl XLII. Feb. 3, 2008

Izzo isn't taking his game anywhere
A feature focused on the New England Patriots' longtime special teams veteran. Feb. 2, 2008

Brown has seen it all
This feature looks at the career and outlook of the longest-tenured member of the New England Patriots. Feb. 2, 2008

Kelley Washington excells in new role, out of the spotlight
A feature highlighting the important role of Kelley Washington in the New England Patriots' special teams. Feb. 1, 2008

Samuel focued on Giants, not free agency
Leading up to Super Bowl XLII, there was a good deal of focus on saftey Asante Samuel's impending free agency. Feb. 1, 2008

Keeping things Light
This feature documents offensive lineman Matt Light's reputation as the team comedian. Jan. 31, 2008

Don't look past Jarvis Green on the Patriots defense
Jarvist Green should not be looked past on the Patriots defense. Correct. Jan. 31, 2008

Family affair for Tuck, Thomas
Cousins Justin Tuck of the New York Giants and Adalius Thomas of the New England Patriots were ready to face each other in Super Bowl XLII. Jan. 30, 2008

Warren unaffected by media storm
Feature on Ty Warren's ascent on the Patriots, and my debut story from Super Bowl XLII in Arizona. Jan. 29, 2008

2006

Parting thoughts from a sports junkie
My final column for The Standard-Times before I moved to Arizona. Dec. 22, 2006

Bruins starting to prove changes are for real
Column where I firmly announce my believe in the new-look Boston Bruins. Dec. 9, 2006

Wishing hot stove would be pushed to the back burner
Sometimes, I wish that baseball season would end with the World Series. But, in New England, that will likely never be the state. Nov. 18, 2006

Holmstrom finds tender connection to goalie
This was a tough one for me. A local goalkeeper for Dartmouth High School had a terrible car accident, but struck up a friendship with Revolution keeper Matt Reis. I can't imagine having to go through something like this, but she kept her sense of humor and spirits up the whole way. Incredible. Nov. 12, 2006

C's need to write a new history
Before Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen arrived, the Celtics were in a sorry state. Nov. 3, 2006

NBA gun policy just the start of needed image overhaul
I've always had a hard time with columns like this. I know what my opinion is, but I work very hard to not come across as just another blowhard with veiled racist beliefs. But the NBA was in the middle of a semi-crisis with their image. Oct. 28, 2006

Tigers in five, but maybe a surprise
A column in which I incorrectly pick the Detroit Tigers to win the World Series in five games while still hedging my bets towards the end. Now that's how you take a stand! Oct. 21, 2006

Cards collapse of historic proportions
On the last day of the season, the St. Louis Cardinals dodged history and made the playoffs. Which is probably why I picked them to lose to the Tigers in a later column. Sept. 30, 2006

Pats looking for consistency
A column looking at that weekend's matchup between the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos. Sept. 22, 2006

MVP race? It's Santana, stupid
The headline's a little harsh, but all the same, pitchers should win the MVP more often. Johan Santana definitely should have in '06, too. Sept. 15, 2006

Lopez has something to prove
I honestly thought the Red Sox trade for catcher Javy Lopez would work. Aug. 5, 2006

A-Rod's troubles not all his doing
I'm not an A-Rod believer, but in this column I look at some outside factors contributing to his difficulties. July 22, 2006

Results later; B's are back
Column written after the Boston Bruins free-agent signings of Zdeno Chara and Marc Savard. Sort of the opposite of the infamous 2005 O'Connell column. July 14, 2006

Fans confident Portugal can overcome
Feature previewing Portugal's World Cup 2006 match with England, including interviews with several Portuguese fans. July 1, 2006

Time to let experiment be history
A column dealing with my dislike of baseball's Interleague Play. May 19, 2006

Yanks-Sox brings out the craziest in fans
The mania surrounding all things Red Sox-Yankees is tough to take at times. And it's hard, as a writer, to walk the line between discussion and hysteria. May 12, 2006

Local pair join Lone Star lineup
Musicians Neal McCarthy and Jamie Toomey head down to Austin at the invitation of guitarist Stephen Bruton. May 5, 2006

No alarm in the Garden of failure
A look a the twin failures of the Boston Bruins and Celtics in the FleetCenter era. It really didn't look like either team was in a hurry to turn their fortunes around, either. April 22, 2006

Closer or starter, a bright future for Papelbon
Off the record, I thought he should have been a starter. And, wouldn't you know it, the folks who run the Boston Red Sox were right and I was wrong. April 7, 2006

Selig dropped the ball long ago
This is one of the angrier columns in my cannon. To this day, Bud Selig's handling of the steroid controversy in baseball disgusts me. March 31, 2006

Reality of sports hard to stomach
A column looking at how fans have it tough in regards to following their favorite players, only to watch them sign with new teams and be traded away. March 24, 2006

OUTLOOK: A sense of the visual
One of two contributions I made to a staff-wide project concerning all things SouthCoast. This looks at the local art scene. March 19, 2006

An overdue call to the Hall fills a void
A column looking at all the Negro League stars who were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame that season. March 3, 2006

An embarrassment no longer
Column once again dealing with my favorite subject in sports, the Boston Bruins. Still critical of O'Connell, but believing in players like goalie Tim Thomas. Jan. 27, 2006

Rice should finally get Hall call
I was two years early, but with the lack of a big name on the ballot and the increasing respect for his accomplishments, I thought Jim Rice was ready to get the call to join the Baseball Hall of Fame. Jan. 8, 2006

2005

10 things to look forward to in New Year
I always enjoy columns like this. Just a fun little list, really. Dec. 30, 2005

Red Sox brass deserve an earful
Want to know one of my angriest moments as a sports fan? Driving home to Quincy at 1 a.m. and hearing that the Red Sox had let Johnny Damon leave for the Yankees. I still love Damon, and this is still infuriating. Dec. 22, 2005

This Bledsoe story getting good
I've always respected Drew Bledsoe's approach to the game of football and his respect of the game. Dec. 16, 2005

Jays primed to shake things up
A column looking at the moves of the Toronto Blue Jays. For the record, they did finish ahead of the Red Sox in 2006. Dec. 9, 2005

A clueless O'Connell strikes again
Written in the wake of the Boston Bruins' shocking trade of Joe Thornton, I tear apart the deal in what is likely the harshest column I've written to date. An unintended consequence, this article likely cost me any chance at a future job with the Bruins. Dec. 2, 2005

It's business as usual without Theo
After Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein walked out on the team when contract talks broke down, the team went on dealing without him. He returned to the team a few weeks later. Nov. 26, 2005

Diving and hockey don't mix
I just to point out that I was an early member of the "Sean Avery Doesn't Belong in the NHL" club. I don't believe in villians for the sake of villians. Nov. 18, 2005

Is the empire creeping north?
The fall of 2005 was a dark time for the Boston Red Sox, and it looked very much like they were heading down the wrong path. I still don't believe fans should have to buy cards to validate their fandom, by the way. Nov. 4, 2005

Hockey's return met with open arms
In which I try to reconcile my anger towards Gary Bettman and company with the true feelings of joy at being able to watch NHL hockey again. Oct. 14, 2005

Wareham remains perfect
A high school football game story. Oct. 8, 2005

With season on the line, Wakefield ready to go
A preview of the Game 3 matchup between the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox in the ALDS. Oct. 7, 2005

Lefties take the hill today
A preview of the Game 2 matchup between the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox in the ALDS. Oct. 5, 2005

Red Sox have dealt with this before
Following their battering by the Chicago White Sox in their playoff opener the day before, I whipped up this quick rundown of other terrible postseason losses in Boston's history. Oct. 5, 2005

Anonymity follows division winners into playoffs
A scouting report on the Chicago White Sox, who were about to take on the defending champion Red Sox in the first round of baseball's playoffs. Oct. 4, 2005

The other Sox
This feature lets our readers in on the Chicago White Sox, the Second City's second team, who were on the verge of a run to the World Series. Oct. 4, 2005

SouthCoast fans plan to be quick with the clicker
A column that ran on A1 interviewing fans on key Red Sox and Patriots games that were on the schedule. Oct. 2, 2005

Entire season rests on three games
Counting down the Red Sox run to the playoffs in 2005. Sept. 30, 2005

He may be a DH, but Big Papi wins games
Part of a dueling column bit with my colleague Jon Couture, who (incorrectly) believed that Alex Rodriguez deserved to be the AL MVP in 2005. I threw my weight behind David Ortiz. Sept. 16, 2005

Good chemistry leads Bruton to New Bedford
A preview of guitarist Stephen Bruton's concert in New Bedford and his ties to local artist Neal McCarthy. Sept. 15, 2005

Playoff atmosphere already present
Another column looking at the neverending saga of the Red Sox and Yankees. Sept. 9, 2005

Playoff positions bought and paid for
This column looks at some of the lesser players in the Red Sox' and Yankees' run to the postseason. Sept 2, 2005

Schilling a solid bet, but it still might not be enough
Returning from injury, Curt Schilling was ready to save the Red Sox, but the 2005 squad was flawed from the beginning. Aug. 25, 2005

Era's sunset could be coming quick
A column on the latest in the Manny Ramirez saga in Boston. I really did believe that he was on his way out of Boston. He hung around for a few more years, and the exit turned out to be much uglier. July 29, 2005

Armstrong surpasses them all
Column written for A1 after Lance Armstrong won his seventh consecutive Tour de France. July 25, 2005

NHL back, but fans may not be
A column where I make the bold statement that the NHL cancelling a season in a desperate effort to save the Southern markets was a bad idea. July 15, 2005

Inanity by way of the ballots
Lord help me, it's a column about All-Star balloting. June 12, 2005

NBA won't follow NHL's lead
Unlike Gary Bettman, David Stern isn't dumb enough to flush an entire season for minimal gains. May 20, 2005

Memories of VE Day strong as ever in SouthCoast vets
A story where I interview a handful of local World War II veterans on their thoughts on the 60th anniversary of Victory-Europe Day. May 8, 2005

Arroyo's star is rising
Bronson Arroyo was hitting his stride to start 2005, and has since become a steady pitcher in the National League. He even has a couple of All Star Games to his credit. Just not the 2005 one. May 6, 2005

No capping a hat obsession
A silly little column where I talk about my love of hats. No, really. April 29, 2005

Imagine, it's Wake, not Nomar, as Mr. Red Sox
Tim Wakefield is certainly unique in pro sports these days, from the loyalty to his club to his contract to the way he pitches. April 22, 2005

They've got backup
A feature and review of In the Company Of ..., a CD by local musicians Neal McCarthy and Jamison Toomey. March 17, 2005

Much ado about nothing
I love spring training, except when people take it seriously. March 11, 2005

No. 8 marks Celtics' return to relevance
A column detailing how Antoine's return to Boston showed that the Celtics were committed to winning that year. March 4, 2005

Miracle on Ice renewed U.S. pride
A Sunday feature for the News side of the Standard-Times to acknowledge the 25th anniversary of the United States' hockey win over the Soviets at Lake Placid in the 1980 Winter Olympics. Feb. 27, 2005

Bonds bug you? Well, big deal
I have a lot of mixed feelings about Barry Bonds and his not-so-secret rise in the late stage of his career. But you can't accuse him of pandering to the media. Feb. 25, 2005

Gator sparks steroid shuffle
A look at what would happen if we actually tried to correct every award handed out since 1988. This was one of my most-linked columns, and coincidentally, Rick Reilly wrote practically the same thing in 2008. I'm fairly certain he has no idea who I am. Feb. 18, 2005

Giambi steps up to the plate ... and takes another hit
Written after Yankees Jason Giambi slugger kinda sorta apologized for steroid use but not really because he couldn't. Looking back, though, Giambi was the only one who even tried to step up and accept responsibility for his actions, as least until Andy Pettite in 2008. Feb. 11, 2005

Fans celebrate Pats dynasty
Feature-y news item from A1 about the New England Patriots' "Rolling Rally" following their third Super Bowl win in four years. I'm still not convinced there were as many people there as the cops said, but there sure were a lot. Feb. 9, 2005

Brady joins an impressive list of heroes
After I wrote this column, I got a nice note from Dartmouth High School girls basketball coach (and my eighth grade algebra teacher) Jeff Hoyle, who wrote to tell me about the heroics of Dartmouth High's Jess Gaspar in the girls tournament in the late 1990s. I told him that if I ever wrote a column on local sports heroics, I would definitely include her. Mr. Hoyle, if you ever find this, please note that I haven't forgotten. Jan. 28, 2005

Spotlight off T.O., Eagles soar
I stand by the fact that Terrell Owens is a horrible addition to any football team, and his talents are more than negated by every ounce of garbage he brings along with him. Using Freddie Mitchell to make that point might not've been the best way to do that. Jan. 21, 2005

The pro sports geniuses strike again
Written in reaction to the Anaheim Angels renaming themselves the "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim." My colleague and friend Jon Couture has taken to calling them the "Los Anaheim Angels," a term that I've borrowed on occasion. Jan. 7, 2005

2004

Mediocre Celtics worth watching
I really do find joy in watching middling, but enthusiastic, teams with a bright future. And most of the young Celtics from this team have gone on to prove themselves worthy of their NBA roster spots. Dec. 31, 2004

Cam scores three at the Garden
For a special Christmas day section, the entire sports department was asked to write a quick bit about their favorite sports memory. Mine was my first trip to the Boston Garden, where Cam Neely scored a hat trick in the first period. He's still my all-time favorite athlete. Dec. 25, 2004

Fans frozen out
A column looking at how the NHL's lockout was affecting local hockey fans. Dec. 17, 2004

Say it ain't so, Pedro
A man-on-the-street feature for A1 chronicling Pedro Martinez's decision to leave the Red Sox and sign with the New York Mets. Dec. 14, 2004

Just what makes a Hall of Famer?
A look at some candidates of for the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2005. It is still ridiculous, to me, that Bert Blyleven isn't in, or that it took Jim Rice 15 years to make it. Dec. 3, 2004

Star crossed: Robert Downey Jr. joins checkered line of actors turned musicians
A fun feature on Downey's then-new music career, as well as a wrap-up of other actors who have tried their hand behind the mic. Nov. 26, 2004

An outrage for a whole new reason
This column led to easily the most hate mail I've ever received. I might tone it down a bit if I had to write it now, but I stand by the argument 100 percent. Nov. 19, 2004

Free angent frenzy set to start again
A column looking at some key free agents of the 2004 offseason, as well as my predictions as to where they'd eventually sign. I went 1-5. Nov. 12, 2004

The other team on an incredible run
A look at the New England Revolution's playoff run. One wish I have is that soccer writing in the mainstream won't always feel like such an uphill battle. Nov. 5, 2004

Rally rolls through Cloud 9
A column written for the front section of the paper detailing the bliss and euphoria of the Red Sox' championship parade of 2004. Never has a rainy Saturday felt so good. Oct. 31, 2004

Sox fans find it hard to believe
After the Red Sox fell behind 0-2 to the Yankees in the 2004 ALCS, I was asked to write a story expressing the grief Sox fans were feeling. Who knew we were all just a week away from the greatest comeback in baseball history? Oct. 15, 2004

Montreal left in baseball's dust
I still believe that what Bud Selig and Major League Baseball did to the city of Montreal borders on criminal. But in the end, they won, didn't they? Sickening. Oct. 1, 2004

Pharewell to Phish: Fans flock to final shows as band says goodbye
A review of Phish's two shows in Mansfield, run on the day that their Coventry festival began. In 2009, though, Phish got back together. I didn't get a chance to see them. Aug. 14, 2004

Prospecting an inexact science
A column looking at some of the Sox deadline deals where they shipped off prospects in return for a veteran. Also, interestingly enough, this was the first installment of my Friday sports column, which ran just about every Friday through the end of 2006. Aug. 6, 2004

It was the same old scene at my house
Portuguese soccer is no laughing matter, especially when the Euro is on the line. July 5, 2004

Sometimes, fame doesn't come as a positive
Easily one of my proudest and most embarrassing moments ever. I got a chance to take a shot during the first intermission of a Bruins game, and, woah, hoo boy ... March 7, 2004

End of the road for Viking girls
Wareham's girls basketball team bows out of the state tournament in Mansfield. Feb. 25, 2004

Keeping the beat
A feature on the music people listen to while they work out, and what gets them moving at the gym. Feb. 21, 2004

A terrific Problem
A feature chronicling the always-interesting musical journey of local musician Neal McCarthy and his band, the Neal McCarthy Problem. For the record, McCarthy is a fun, fantastic guitarist who really doesn't take off nights. If you get the chance, go see him — he's a blast. Jan. 1, 2004

2003

A smooth operation: Dr. Brian Pettiford brings calm, committment to his new job as heart surgeon
A feature on a surgeon who had recently arrived in the SouthCoast of Massachusetts. Dec. 30, 2003

Nomar for Sox MVP: Quiet, but strong
Oh boy. My first column, a defense of Nomar Garciaparra as the Red Sox' MVP of 2003. Not the strongest stance in the world, but I did my best to make it work. Sept. 25, 2003

Confessions of a Pearl Jam junkie
A feature chronicling my mini-trek following Pearl Jam for two weeks. This story was later published at www.giventowail.com, a Mike McCready fan site, as well. July 27, 2003

Third time could be charm for NBH
A preview of the New Bedford girls lacrosse team's tournament. May 31, 2003

Coin flip lands Lakers in hot water
A preview of the Apponequet boys tennis team's tournament. May 29, 2003

Stang's Dylan Carey is Stanford-bound
A feature on a gymnast on his way to college. January 10, 2003

2002

Galligan's hat trick lifts Indians
High school hockey game story. I still like writing with gloves on. Dec. 31, 2002

Whalers, Spartans to meet in Christmas Tournament final
Game coverage of the first-round of the New Bedford Christmas Tournament, which pits Dartmouth, New Bedford, Bishop Stang and GNB Voc-Tech in a holiday hockey tournament. Dec. 21, 2002

Overcoming obstacles: Stephanie Guy of Apponequet
The girls' side of the Player of the Year series. Dec. 6, 2002

Rosinha ahead of the pack
Part of that season's "Player of the Year" series. Funny enough, this kid was my teammate a couple of years earlier at Dartmouth high. Dec. 5, 2002

Solid effort important to Bears, Spartans
A preview of the Thanksgiving Day football matchup between GNB Voc-Tech and Bishop Stang. Nov. 27, 2002

UMD men drop Hampton Inn final
Game story covering the U-Mass Dartmouth men's basketball team. Nov. 24, 2002

UMD overcomes injuries in blowout
A game story showing that, sure enough, the UMD men's basketball team was in decent shape. Nov. 23, 2002

Injuries temper promise of UMD men's basketball
A preview of U-Mass Dartmouth's basketball season opener. Nov. 22, 2002

Fairhaven cheerleaders aim for regional championship
To date, I believe this is still my only story covering cheerleading. Nov. 17, 2002

UMD's Super Marino Brothers help lead charge
A feature on three brothers who were key to U-Mass Dartmouth's football team. Nov. 15, 2002

Spartans lose ninth straight
A high school football game story. After I turned this in, my editor turned to me and said, "I have to say, that is the best positive spin on a 42-0 loss I've ever seen." Nov. 10, 2002

Old faces come together at Eastern Mass. meet
A preview of an important meet featuring a few SouthCoast schools. Nov. 8, 2002

Apponequet bows out in heartbreaker
Girls volleyball tournament game story. They take their volleyball very seriously. Nov. 7, 2002

ORR falls to top seed in tournament
Chronicling Old Rochester's girls volleyball team being eliminated in that year's playoffs. Nov. 5, 2002

Sedlack sets new mark as Whalers advance
The New Bedford girls volleyball team take a step forward in their tournament. Nov. 3, 2002

Whalers, Indians headline local volleyball seeds
A preview of the upcoming girls volleyball tournament. Oct. 31, 2002

Wellesley sends Apponequet field hockey packing
A field hockey game story detailing the Lakers' ousting from the tournament. Oct. 30, 2002

New Bedford edges Voc-Tech boys soccer team
The headline pretty much sums this one up. Oct. 15, 2002

Fairhaven pushes Scituate to the brink
A high school football game story. Fairhaven didn't quite have enough. Oct. 5, 2002

Stang falls short in Mashpee
High school football. Not mentioned in the story, since Mashpee was out of our coverage area, was that this was their first win in about three years. Sept. 21, 2002

Medeiros, Voc-Tech battle back to tie
A high school boys soccer game story. Sept. 19, 2002

Lakers court big changes
A preview of Apponequet High School's girls volleyball season. Sept. 15, 2002

Local skater making big strides
A feature on a local figure skater who was making a name for herself in the rink. Aug. 31, 2002

Fortin takes Fairhaven the distance
Fairhaven wins the third and final game in their Legion playoff series with Plymouth. July 27, 2002

Plymouth takes Fairhaven to third game
Continuing coverage in this Legion playoff series. July 26, 2002

Wotten puts Fairhaven on top in playoff opener
American Legion baseball playoffs. For the record, the photo goes with another story, it's just a Web error. July 25, 2002

Spindle City tops Post 1
An American Legion baseball game story between Fall River and New Bedford squads. July 6, 2002

Dartmouth bats have Post 307 thinking playoffs
A pretty basic American Legion game story. I was still getting my feet wet, to be honest. July 4, 2002

Fairhaven jumps out early, coasts past Swansea
An American Legion baseball game story. More importantly (to me), this was my first official by-line in The Standard-Times. June 22, 2002