|Notes and Observations Week 15: Patriots Blow Out Dolphins 41-13; Clinch AFC East||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Defense, Special Teams Carry Home Team||Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em: Week 15||Right Idea? Red Sox Bring in Rick Porcello, Wade Miley, Justin Masterson|
Week of January 11 to January 18
1. The Celtics’ Big Three are growing old together. Hmm, this somehow sounds familiar. Wasn’t Danny Ainge around for this the first time? If the plan for improving the 5-8 Celtics is that they will all suddenly stop getting older somehow, that doesn’t seem likely.
2. The Bruins just can’t beat Carolina. Boston is 0-3 against the last-place former Hartford Whalers this year, and 29-10-1 against everyone else. Carolina goalie Cam Ward is 3-0 with a 1.67 goals-against average and a ridiculous .948 save percentage against the Bruins this season, and 13-17, 3.05 and .901 against everyone else. At least the Bruins shouldn’t have to face Carolina in the playoffs again; and we all remember what happened the last time they did.
3. NHL All-Star team captain Zdeno Chara will get to draft his teammates for the All-Star game. He might want to ask Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli for advice, Chia Pete seems to know how to put together a hockey team.
4. The Red Sox have an off-season plan after all: sign Vicente Padilla, so when he beans Nick Swisher and Mark Texiera of the Yankees again and again, they will get hurt and or suspended, thereby weakening the competition. Might be kind of unlikely, but you have to admit that it does make more sense than signing scrubs like Carlos Silva, Nick Punto and Dennis Cook.
5. When a QB who was a two-time national champion in college, won the Heisman trophy, was a first round draft choice and has gotten nonstop media attention all year long has a playoff showdown against a QB who was a 6th round draft choice, which one is the Cinderella story again? And which one threw 6 TD passes?