by John Walters
Tweet Me Right
— Simon Kuestenmacher (@simongerman600) January 23, 2019
Thanks to @BrianKearney95 for sending this to us.
Baltic See Ya
All’s we can say is we strongly urged James Dolan to listen to the other Sharks before accepting Mark Cuban’s offer for 7’3″ Kristaps Porzingis. Barbara Corcoran wouldn’t have offered more? Mr. Wonderful? Daymond John? Lori the QVC lady? Robert with the good hair? No one?
— Downtown Josh Brown (@ReformedBroker) January 31, 2019
Maybe if New York wasn’t a small-market town…anyway, now international player-adoring owner Cuban has Porzingis and likely Rookie of the Year Luka Doncic: i.e., his best pair of foreign-born players since Nash and Nowitzki.
2. Pet On Parade
In Thailand, Khemjira Klongsanun was seven miles into the Chombueng Marathon when she noticed runners ahead of her dodging an object in the road. It was a lost puppy, and as there were no homes nearby, Klongsanun figured it had been abandoned.
She picked up the pup and carried it the last 19 miles across the finish line. After the race Klongsanum repeatedly appealed for the pup’s owner to come forward, but no one ever did. And so she adopted him and named him Chombueng. She’s our early leader for Sportsperson of the Year.
3. $650 Per Hour
Two days ago The Washington Post put out an incredible story about how an eight-person committee formed to investigate Maryland’s football culture last August spent two months on the project, submitted a 192-page paper and billed the university $1.57 MILLION. And some of these “investigators” were alums. To wit…
Charles Scheeler, attorney and the committee’s point person: $283,000
Ben Legg, retired federal judge: $161,000
Alex Williams, retired judge: $155,000
Bonnie Bernstein, sports reporter and Terp alum: $118,000
Tom McMillen, former Terrapin hoops star and three-term Congressman: $59,000
Doug Williams, Super Bowl QB: $30,000
All of the committee members charged the school at an hourly rate of $650, which is like partner-level at Skadden, Arps. Or should at least come with bottle service.
Now, we think we know what’s happening here (not that it makes it any less obscene). Maryland was paying for the work to a degree, but what the school was really paying for was insurance against the lawsuit they expected head coach D.J. Durkin to file once they terminated him. If they had simply done what common sense tells you to do (fire the jerk), his wrongful termination suit might have heft.
Here, though, if it came to a hearing or arbitration the school could point to its hefty 192-page report (feel the bulk!) AND to all the consultancy fees they paid and say, “A ha! See? We did our homework.”
So, yeah, it’s crazy obscene that Bernstein and McMillen would charge their own alma mater $650 an hour for a fait accompli , but it’s good work if you can get it. We’re just wondering why Terp alum Susie B. was not onboard this gravy train.
Related: We know and like Bernstein. Consider her a friend. But you know, we’re also journalists and we report on the news. Look around and see how many folks in the sports sphere call attention to this fleecing. Will fellow Terp alum Scott Van Pelt mention it on SportsCenter? Would seem to be the story that would normally be right in his wheelhouse.
4. This Totally Won The Science Fair At Manitoba Junior High
— Kyle Brittain (@KyleTWN) January 31, 2019
5. Take The AFI Quiz
Last night we stayed up late to watch Singin’ In The Rain on TCM because 1) we’d never seen it and 2) it’s not as if we had to wake up early to go to work and 3) we’re that rare straight guy who owns a cat and enjoys musicals. Whaddaya want from us?
Anyway, afterward TCM host Ben Mankiewicz noted how the Gene Kelly-Donald O’Connor-Debbie Reynolds-Cyd Charisse classic was pretty much overlooked upon release in 1952 (one cast member was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar, but it was none of them; it was Jean Hagen) and didn’t even make prominent Top 10 films of the year lists at the time. Now, as Ben noted it’s on the American Film Institute’s Top 100 Films list. In fact, it’s in the TOP TEN.
The folks at AFI finally got smart and realized that many movie fans check out this list and count how many of the movies they’ve seen, so when we returned to the list late last night (actually, this morning…“Good mornin’, good mornin’, we’ve talked the whole night through…”) we smiled at its new wrinkle: you can check a box next to the movies you’ve seen and it will do the counting for you.
Take a moment and score yourself. We suggest only checking the box if you’ve seen the movie in its entirety. We scored a 66, but strangely have never seen two of the top six. Someday…
Wondering if John C. Reilly and Jenna Fischer got hate mail from Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon after Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story was released. As Rolling Stone opined last December, this genius parody nearly killed the music biopic. It came out only two years after Walk The Line and had to be inspired by it, nearly plot point for plot point.
Celtics at Knicks
7:30 p.m. ESPN