Word on the Street: Versteeg says no to D.C.

Word on the Street: Versteeg says no to D.C.

Thursday, March 10, 2011
CSNChicago.com

Versteeg won't visit White House

Openly celebrating your former team's victory over your current team probably isn't the best idea. At least, that's what former-Blackhawk Kris Versteeg appears to be thinking. According to the Toronto Sun, Versteeg has declined an invitation to reunite with his old Blackhawks teammates at the White House for a meet-and-greet with President Obama.

"It's pretty cool to get the chance to go the White House, but after thinking about it I just decided to take a pass and let those guys enjoy themselves," said Versteeg, who now plays for the Philadelphia Flyers. "I'm still buddies with (the Blackhawks), but I haven't been on that team for almost a year." (The Toronto Sun)

Celtics lead down to 1.5 games

Within the last week the Bulls have hop-scotched the Miami Heat for second place in the Eastern Conference and now have their sights set on the Boston Celtics, owners of the top spot in the East. After a Bulls victory over the Bobcats last night, the Celtics lost 108-103 to the Los Angeles Clippers. With the loss, their lead over the Bulls slipped to only a game and a half. (Chicago Breaking Sports)

Airline, Prosecutor challenge NHL ruling on Pacioretty hit

The NHL is receiving criticism from all over the place in the wake of a nasty hit suffered by Montreal's Max Pacioretty in a game against the Boston Bruins. As a result of the violent hit by Boston's Zdeno Chara, Pacioretty was sent to the hospital with a fractured vertebra and severe concussion.

The NHL decided on Wednesday that they would not suspend Chara for the hit, prompting a Quebec prosecutor to ask police to investigate the hit.

Additionally, Air Canada has informed the NHL that it is considering withdrawing its sponsorship unless the league tightens it rules in an attempt to reduce serious injuries. (Press of Atlantic City)

Chicago State star earns recognition

Chicago State forward Carl Montgomery was named on Thursday to the first-team, all-Great West Conference team. Montgomery, a 6-foot-7 senior ranked third in the conference with 17 points per game and seven rebounds per game. His numbers in conference play were even better, averaging 20.5 points and 8.9 rebounds. (Chicago Breaking Sports)

Palatine man trains for marathon by eating...

... ONLY McDonald's. That's right, Joe D'Amico of Palatine plans to run the Los Angeles Marathon on March 20 after training for 30 days on a diet of McDonald's fast food alone.

"My wife told me I was crazy," D'Amico, 36, said. "But I love McDonald's and I love running, and this was a great way to combine the two."

He usually starts the day with a plate of hot cakes, an Egg McMuffin and an orange juice. He eats a grilled chicken sandwich for lunch, washed down with a large Coke, then enjoys a hamburger and fries for dinner, with cookies for desert. His only deviation from the McDonald's menu is a daily multivitamin, tap water, and an energy gel he takes while on the road. (suntimes.com)

Joe Maddon ‘Anchorman’ vision for Cubs road trip: ‘We got the Sex Panther in today’

Joe Maddon ‘Anchorman’ vision for Cubs road trip: ‘We got the Sex Panther in today’

A homestand that has already featured Cincinnati Reds manager Bryan Price grumbling “Hail to the Cubs” after a game ended on an overturned replay review – and Milwaukee Brewers officials complaining about a premature rainout – will end with Joe Maddon’s team walking out of Wrigley Field dressed as “Anchorman” characters. 

The Cubs are hovering around .500 as a baseball product, but the defending World Series champs are already back in terms of getting under people’s skin and going viral on social media. That will happen again on Thursday, when the Cubs start posting photos of their 1970s outfits to Twitter and Instagram before boarding their flight to Southern California.

“We got the Sex Panther in today,” Maddon said during Wednesday’s pregame media session, sounding nothing like San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy.

Q: You got the what?

“Sex Panther,” Maddon said, “60 percent of the time, it works every time, you’re not aware of that?”

Q: Does it growl when you open it?

“It does,” Maddon said. “It growls.”

The official theme for the road trip through Los Angeles and (Stay Classy) San Diego would be…

“It’s the Ron Burgundy/Brick Tamland – and I also wanted to include Tommy La Stella – Tribute Road Trip, where 60 percent of the time, it works every time, sponsored by Sex Panther cologne,” Maddon said.

La Stella is the enigmatic pinch-hitter/backup infielder now playing at Triple-A Iowa. Steve Carell played Tamland – the weatherman for the Channel 4 news team – in the movie. 

“I just see him like Brick Tamland,” Maddon said. “I just see him kind of like Brick. It’s almost like two interchangeable guys. I see Brick, I see Tommy, I see Tommy, I see Brick. Put some glasses on Tommy like that, dress him up, some sideburns and have him scream a little bit, I got Brick.”     

And when the Cubs return home next week, it will be interesting to see if the St. Louis Cardinals notice the celebration shots on the big video board and find any amusement in the dancing relievers.

“Oh my God, absolutely, I love it,” Maddon said. “I think it’s very entertaining. I would have to believe two things: I believe the fans will really appreciate it, and I don’t think it’s disrespectful to the other side. 

“I just think it’s funny. I really believe if we’re on the road and the other bullpen did that, I would laugh. So whoever’s thought it was in the beginning, I commend them. I think it’s pretty funny.

“It really makes you look forward to the next home run, to see what these guys are going to do, so I’m all for it.”

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Jason Benetti stops by to talk the future of the White Sox

yoan-moncada-0524.jpg
USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Jason Benetti stops by to talk the future of the White Sox

There's a lot of buzz around the future of the White Sox.

White Sox announcer Jason Benetti joined SportsTalk Live on Wednesday to discuss the team's exciting young prospects and how soon they'll be making their way to the South Side.

Also joining Pat Boyle on this episode of the SportsTalk Live Podcast are the Tribune's David Haugh, Pro Football Weekly's Hub Arkush and WGN Radio's Sam Panayotovich.

The guys also react to Mike Glennon's recent comments and Kevin White’s uncertain status at OTAs.

Plus, they wonder if Kyle Schwarber has finally found his spot in the Cubs' lineup.

Take a listen to the latest episode below: