Last night's studs:
1. NHL GMs -- They've teamed up to collectively "lowball" Alexei Yashin with crappy contract offers, according to Yashin's agent. Good for them. No team should blow more than a few mil on a past-his-prime scorer who doesn't even score that much anymore. Movie producers lowball Kevin Costner nowadays for the same reason -- he asks for $18.00 and a Kit Kat bar; they throw a Twinkie and sock full of pennies at him.
2. GILBERT ARENAS-- Agent Zero, this year's EA Sports NBA Live '08 coverboy, recently showed off his inner nerd at the game's launch party, discussing Live's improved frame rate and animations. He even had the cojones to admit last year's game was shit. Finally, a coverboy who actually knows the game he represents. Maybe this'll kill the EA Sports curse. Or maybe he'll be dead by sunset.
3. THADDEUS YOUNG -- The Philadelphia 76ers' 2007 first rounder is letting fans vote on his jersey number for his rookie season. Sure, it's a thinly veiled ploy to sell merchandise, but it's clever. Far less annoying than changing your stupid number to 24. Good for Young (i.e. good for the actual businessman hanging in the shadows who told him to do this).
AND ONE FANBASE WITH AS MUCH COLLECTIVE KNOWLEDGE AS THE PLAYERS' WIVES' SECTION AT A LEAFS GAME: FIFA UNDER-20 WORLD CUP FANS -- Canadians have been treated to high-quality football the last couple weeks and their multicularism means hooligans of many backgrounds are crawling out of the woodwork to stomp, fight and vomit their way into oblivion. It's a nice alternative to hearing Grandma's detailed account of the time she halted her game of tiddlywinks to watch paint dry for six hours in '54.
As USA and Uruguay fought into extra time last night, the Toronto crowd roared and shook with excitement....because of the wave. That's right -- half the crowd wasn't even watching the game, choosing instead to start a massive (and admittedly impressive) wave that had no one watching the action for 10 minutes. So much for Canada being a soccer nation.