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Queens Chronicle

A not so jolly Roger

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Posted: Thursday, May 5, 2011 12:00 pm | Updated: 3:07 pm, Wed May 25, 2011.

   Normally unflappable NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell appeared to lose his composure at Radio City Music Hall on the first night of the NFL Draft as nearly 5,000 fans screamed in unison “We want football!” at the top of their lungs as he opened the proceedings. I guess the fans are not sympathetic to the team owners’ goal of upwardly redistributing wealth at the expense of the players.

   I ran into Nebraska cornerback Prince Amukamara at Yankee Stadium three days before the draft. He agreed with my sentiment that the city in which you play, and the endorsement opportunities that come with location, are more important than the position that you are drafted on the big night.

   The well-spoken Amukamara was selected by the Giants, who had the 19th pick and said that he felt like he won the lottery. My guess is that Prince will be a media favorite for Giants beat writers the way Justin Tuck is now.

   Apologies once again to HBO Real Time host Bill Maher. New rules: Sportscasters can no longer refer to the conference area where a team’s executives gather to decide which college player to take as “the war room” — not when there are American soldiers putting their lives on the line in Iraq and Afghanistan.

   Pepcom, the quarterly trade show for the media that showcases tomorrow’s products today, commemorated Earth Day with an ecology products showcase in Midtown. There were a number of companies, such as TerraCycle, that recycle trash into such consumer goods as flip-flops, backpacks and tote bags. My guess is that it won’t be long until athletic merchandise such as footballs, basketballs, hockey pucks and various gloves are made entirely from recycled materials.

   Phil Hughes’ dead arm, believed to be caused by a circulatory problem, is upsetting even if you’re not a Yankees fan. Hughes is only 24, and was one of the most promising young pitchers in the majors. The next time you get upset at a “greedy” athlete try to remember that a career can end in a heartbeat.

   Even though his team lost 2-1 to the Phillies and their ace pitcher, Roy Halladay, last Saturday at Citizens Bank Park, Mets Manager Terry Collins agreed that the game was a joy to watch. Both Halladay and his Mets counterpart, Jonathon Niese, worked fast and threw strikes. Both teams played stellar defense while neither committed an error.

   Collins also agreed that these kinds of baseball games were common in the 1960s and 1970s but have become rarities in the last 20 years. He was stumped as to why too many games drag on compared to yesteryear, but conceded that more matches like the one the Mets played on Saturday can only increase attendance and interest.

   The New York Racing Association is finally doing some things right. On July 1, ex-Foreigner lead singer Lou Gramm will perform at Belmont Park. I think that it has been 30 years since name talent played in the track’s backyard. NYRA officials also cut a deal with the MTA that restored LIRR service to Belmont from Jamaica.


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