Big Lead Sports Bar



I have some major-league catching up to do, and that means covering a plethora of topics in a short amount of time. A few discussion points for your Monday morning:

1. The Penguins, famously left for dead a few months ago by Gene Collier, now have home-ice advantage in the NHL playoffs for their upcoming series against the Flyers. I hope they don't read the papers.

2. Byron Leftwich is headed to Tampa Bay for $7.5 million over two years, plus the chance to start. Considering his other option was to return to the Steelers at the minimum, this was probably an easy decision.

3. The Pirates had another up-and-down weekend, crushing the Reds on Saturday and getting three-hit by Aaron Harang on Sunday. Jack Wilson, Freddy Sanchez and Adam LaRoche turned a triple play yesterday. The Pirates now stand at 3-3, a pace that would break the 16-year Curse of Barry Bonds.

4. The Buccos' home opener is slated for 1:35 today, with Zach Duke and Brian Moehler taking the respective hills for the Pirates and Astros. Andy LaRoche will be planted firmly on the pines. Dejan has the full lineups and details at the PBC Blog.

4a. Ron Cook scores a rare interview with Kevin McClatchy in this morning's PG.

5. The Pitt spring game took place on Saturday, and Pitt Blather was all over it. Looks like the Steelers won't be the only dominant defense in town this year.

6. The PensBlog is promoting Rinkotology, an interactive fundraiser to benefit the Lemieux Foundation, so check that out and help the cause.

7. I taped a brief podcast with ESPN's Dave Dameshek which also ran on ESPN 1250 Sunday morning. We cover the early-season results of the Pirates, the end of the Pitt Panthers basketball campaign, and much more. You can catch that here if you're so inclined.

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The Man Himself said...

So the Byron Leftwich era in Pittsburgh draws to a close. How about a little retrospective, Don? I think Byron, along with guys Lawrence Timmons, was one of those hidden causes behind a championship season. He did everything a great back up should do. He closed out games with simplicity, accuracy, and no propensity to make mistakes. No small task. Let's not forget how Tommy Gun almost caused the Steelers to miss the playoffs in 2005 by giving away two games with dumb turnovers. Let's also not forget he must have done something right during the week: he ran the scout team that helped one of the best defenses in Steelers history prepare for each game so methodically and carefully. What game could it be said that the Steelers defense got out coached or caught off guard? None I can think of. Farewell, Byron. I hope Florida appreciates you more this time.

Reggie Dunlop said...

you didn't mention the redhawks! what a heartbreaker ...

mondesishouse said...

Leftwich was absolutely a vital part of the 2008 team. Sorry to see an experienced and pedigreed QB like him go but the money difference was ridiculous. And Tampa is a much better spot to regain a starting job.