Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Shank Talks Tuna

Shank resumes his blistering pace of a column or so per week with a piece on former Patriots coach Bill Parcells, who has extensive ties with both Bill Belichick and Tom Coughlin. As with some Shank columns in the past, his current column looks a lot like this one. I believe Shank listened to a three day old ESPN podcast and make that his column.

Also, they've sent Shank to Indianapolis, so says the top of the column. You need to go to the events in order to get these types of original columns!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Or Maybe Not

One week after my brash prediction of many Patriot-themed Shank columns, he hasn't written a damned thing. That worked out like many of Shank's predictions, didn't it?

I'm not sure if Shank's part of the Globe crew that's going to Indy; I saw Bob Ryan on last night's Comcast Sports New England with Felger & Tom Curran, and I'd think Chris Gasper woud be there as well, but no Shank sightings so far.

Monday, January 23, 2012

And So It Begins

How many columns do you think Shank will milk out of this Super Bowl rematch?
FOXBOROUGH - Feeling 10 years younger today? You should. Your Patriots are going to the Super Bowl and it feels just like 2001-02, when the stars aligned and the Patriots were unlikely kings of the NFL.

A decade ago, we had the Tuck Rule, snow angels, and a bunch of overachievers who redefined the word “team’’ and carried their magic to the Super Bowl in New Orleans.

Now the Patriots are blessed with a no-name defense, cosmic attrition of NFL superpowers, and the indomitable spirit of Myra H. Kraft, who died shortly before an unlikely season that ends Feb. 5 in Indianapolis against the same New York Giants who derailed New England’s historic 18-0 season on Feb. 3, 2008.
Bonus Bill Buckner cheapshots included; what would a Shank column be without a Red Sox reference or two?

Sunday, January 22, 2012


It may or may not be a mailed in column, but it's fairly predictable.
Tom Brady and Ray Lewis. The quarterback and the middle linebacker. Finesse and force.

They are former Super Bowl MVPs, masters of their crafts, and the faces of their franchises - the New England Patriots and the Baltimore Ravens. Today they clash at Gillette Stadium, with the winner earning a trip to Super Bowl XLVI Feb. 5 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Et cetera.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Must Have Been An Open Bar

Shank attended the 73rd Baseball Writers Association of America annual meeting (Boston chapter). Shank's had a few months to calm down about the Red Sox and writes with far less venom, at least for now. He's also insistent that more money spent by the Red Sox is a good thing:
After spending like Charlie Sheen on a weekend bender, the Sox suddenly are fiscally responsible in this bad-news winter? They got burned when they signed John Lackey and Crawford, and now they’re worried about going over the dreaded $178 million luxury tax threshold (they were taxed at a rate of 30 percent last year, and that goes to 40 percent if they exceed the limit again this year)?
Just a thought - maybe Lackey and Crawford are why they're worried about these things now?
The Sox charge fans a ton of money for tickets. NESN makes a bundle. John Henry and friends have demonstrated a willingness to spend in commensurate fashion during their 10-year stewardship. But now it feels like they are pulling back, holding the line, worrying about luxury tax, and (gulp) monies spent on Liverpool soccer.
So, these guys are rich / make a ton of money, have spent a ton of money in the past and should continue to do so, just not on that shitty foreign soccer club? I don't quite see the logic with that, and I still think it takes a special kind of asshole to tell someone else what to do with their money.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Indiana Dreaming

What's this? A rare midweek column from Shank?
Go ahead and knock yourself out dissecting and analyzing Sunday’s conference championship games. Ravens vs. Patriots, followed by Giants vs. 49ers makes for a Sunday smorgasbord of playoff thrills and tension.

Not me. I’ve already moved on. These potentially spectacular title games are merely compulsory exercises; games that must be played in order for us to get to the game that everybody is really thinking about.

Super Bowl XLVI. At Lucas Oil (Can Boyd) Stadium in downtown Indianapolis. New England Patriots vs. New York Giants.
A better sentiment if it was made before all the other ones, but it's a decent column nonetheless. The cynical part of me thinks that Shank is angling for this rematch in order for the Patriots to lose (not a stretch for Shank) in order to write his new book, "The Curse of the Belichikbino" or some such.

Sunday, January 15, 2012


That's Shank, with two columns in two days!
FOXBOROUGH - Route One was Easy Street. Foxborough was The Big Easy. Everybody at Gillette had that Peaceful, Easy Feeling. The game could have been dedicated to the late Easy Ed Macauley.

Tebow TV ratings took a big dive.

Winning their first playoff game in four years, the Patriots annihilated the Denver Broncos, 45-10, at frosty Gillette Stadium last night. It was a beating of - dare we say - biblical proportions.
The column does improve from there, but Shank gets way ahead of himself at the very end:
Wouldn’t it be something if this group turns out to be the team that does what the 18-0 team could not do. What if this turns out to be the Patriots team that wins the next Super Bowl?
Don't jinx us, man. You know the cliche; take it one game at a time...

Saturday, January 14, 2012

DHL Dan X / Back On The Bandwagon

Yes indeed, we have the worst of both worlds!
How does 73-0, Patriots, sound?

The Belichickmen are playing the Denver Broncos tonight in the latest Game of the Millennium and everything is going New England’s way. Again.

Could this be teed up any better? Could things be any easier for your New England Patriots?

Of all the playoff scenarios, the Patriots got the one they wanted. No Steelers this time. No Ray Rice. No Rex Ryan scheming. No elite quarterback on the other side.
Aside from the fact that Ray Rice could be playing in Foxboro next week if both the Ravens and Patriots win this weekend, this column's a big lump of something awful; we're only a lame song reference or two away from completely nuking this mailed-in hatchet job.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Barry Larkin, Baseball HOF

Barry Larkin was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame today. Here's what Shank, voting member of The Baseball Writers Association of America, had to say about it:

Sunday, January 08, 2012

That's Entertainment

A few times a year, Shank pretends to care about Boston Bruins hockey. This is one of those times.
Playing the Vancouver Canucks is like playing a collection of A-Rods or a full squad of Bill Laimbeers. The defending NHL Western Conference champions are a virtual conga line of Claude Lemieuxes and Ulf Samuelssons.

They are posers and floppers, arrogant and cowardly. It’s hard to believe Cam Neely ever wore their sweater. Beating them up is just so much fun, and flipping one of them butt-over-tea kettle sweetens the day. But you can’t put them on the power play 11 times or they will make you pay.
This is his best hockey column in quite some time.

While we're talking about hockey, I watched part of the Maine - UNH game at Fenway Park last night. I'm pretty sure it was Shank in the booth as an 'analyst'. I only tuned in for thirty seconds or so before turning it off, because Shank was simply awful. I thought he sucked so bad I couldn't bear to stick around long enough to confirm it was him. Whether or not it was Shank, NESN needs to reassess the announcing structure for future college hockey games.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

The Next Bill Russell?

Three days after a breakout performance from the Celtics' Greg Stiemsma, Shank gets off his lazy ass and jumps on the bandwagon with ridiculous, over-the-top praise worthy of an Al Pacino scene.
Eleven days. Five games played. And already the kid is a cult hero.

How long before they name the New Boston Garden after Greg Stiemsma?

He’s the new Brian Scalabrine. He’s the new Greg Kite. He’s the new Kevin McHale.

He’s the new (gulp) Bill Russell?
Give us a break, hype master. Conner Henry was a cult hero, too...

Monday, January 02, 2012

Off The Bandwagon Again

Shank's first column of 2012 is the usual offering of optimism regarding the playoff hopes of the New England Patriots:
FOXBOROUGH - Maybe it’s because I’m Irish-Catholic and we always expect something bad to happen when things are going great.

Maybe it’s because my folks lived through the Great Depression and taught us never to turn down work or free food - the bounty might not be there tomorrow.

Or maybe I just saw too many Red Sox games in the 1970s, 1980s, and 2011.

Anyway, I’m sure I’ll come to regret this, and I hope I am wrong (happens a lot), but count me as a guy with zero faith in the immediate future of the 2011-12 Patriots. These guys aren’t going anywhere near Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis. Something bad is going to happen at Gillette Stadium before this month is over.
Given Shank's ability (or lack thereof) to accurately predict this sort of thing, I'm not terribly worried.

The rest of the column is readable. See you next week, Shank!