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D.C. Sports Bog: May 16, 2010 - May 22, 2010

Elvis Wigs and Galifianakis at Nats Park

I received this notice during my First Things First chat Friday morning: I'm having my bachelor party at Nats Park tomorrow, and my best man has secured 5 elvis wigs that are "like 2 feet tall" and inflateable. The wigs appear to have landed. That's a great look. Photo...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 22, 2010; 4:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Nats  
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Rod Woodson nicknames Haynesworth "Big Baby"

The media crowd is running pretty close to 100 percent against Albert Haynesworth, and NFL Network analysts Rod Woodson and Solomon Wilcots didn't change that ratio much when they discussed the big defensive lineman this week. "I think he has a new nickname: Albert 'Big Baby' Haynesworth," Woodson said. "Listen,...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 21, 2010; 5:33 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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Mark Lerner got a black eye

(By Ian Koski - Nationals Daily News) By now you've heard the story about how Mark Lerner, in full uniform, took a baseball off the noggin and left some of his blood on the Nats Park greenery. MLB.com's Bill Ladson reported that Lerner received a couple of stitches, but...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 21, 2010; 5:02 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Caps , Nats , Wizards  
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Leonsis on John Wall

Not surprisingly, one of the questions posed to Ted Leonsis during his National Press Club appearance on Friday concerned the identity of the team's No. 1 draft pick. An "overzealous" Wizards sales rep posted on Facebook on Friday that the team was taking John Wall, but Leonsis said no...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 21, 2010; 4:34 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Wizards  
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Leonsis says NHL is in better shape than NBA

(By Bill Kostroun - AP) Ted Leonsis told a National Press Club audience on Friday that the NHL is in better financial shape than the NBA, that he plans to build the Wizards based on homegrown young talent rather than imported free agents, and that businesses succeed when they...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 21, 2010; 3:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Caps , Wizards  
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Leonsis on changing the Wizards' name and colors

(AP file photo) The question I've been asked most often over the past few months is whether I think Ted Leonsis will change the Wizards' name and color scheme after he assumes control of the franchise. His comments on that question have been pretty scarce, but Friday he was...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 21, 2010; 3:14 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (40)
Categories:  Wizards  
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Bruschi wonders if Haynesworth loves football

Now that we've heard from every member of the Redskins organization on the Albert Haynesworth situation, from Daniel Snyder to the person who places the Pop Tarts in the Redskins Park cafeteria toaster each morning, it's time to move on to every other person who has now or has...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 20, 2010; 11:42 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
Categories:  Redskins  
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Tommy the Green Ranger's local MMA debut

Jason David Frank likes to refer to himself as "Fearless Frank," a name he coined years ago with his brother. Ring announcers for his amateur MMA fights often play up a different moniker: "Tommy the Green Ranger." See, Frank spent much of his life starring in the Mighty Morphin...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 20, 2010; 4:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Fighting Sports  
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Strasburg odds, and fan reactions

Via the Democrat and Chronicle. Before this season, online sports odds hub Bodog listed Stephen Strasburg at 100-1 to win the NL Cy Young, the best odds for any Nats pitcher. His odds of that would seem pretty slim, but Bodog now has odds for some other Jeeezusian accomplishments....

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 20, 2010; 2:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Nats  
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Stephen A. Smith: Wall "is showtime"

John Wall at a Kentucky Derby party. (By Jeff Gentner - Getty) If the Wizards had drawn the No. 2 pick in the draft, fans would have rejoiced. People would be happily watching Evan Turner highlights right now. I'd be quoting experts on how Turner might turn out to...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 20, 2010; 1:31 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
Categories:  Media , Wizards  
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The McNabb-Strahan Dr. Pepper ad

Sports Business Journal's report this week that Donovan McNabb's handlers are hoping for "a renaissance of the 11-year pro's reputation as a commercial endorser" was eye-catching, because it's been a while since this area had a pro athlete with a truly national endorsement presence. (Though John Wall ought to...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 20, 2010; 12:09 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Redskins  
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Should the Nats play "Sweet Caroline?"

Fans sing "Sweet Caroline" at Nats Park. (By Gerald Martineau - TWP) Nats Park will be a fairly popular venue in upcoming weeks. There will be near-sellouts, if not actual sellouts, and I'd venture to say quite a few people might show up who've never before visited the venue....

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 20, 2010; 11:56 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (102)
Categories:  Nats  
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Greivis Vasquez loves Duke?

(By Kevin C. Cox - Getty) Greivis Vasquez did everything he could over the last four years to convince Maryland fans that he had turtle blood running through his veins, from his love affair with Gary Williams to his frequent odes to life in College Park to his assertion...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 10:31 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
Categories:  Caps , Nats , Terps , Wizards  
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Paula Deen, Ham Brigade at Nats Park

Courtesy Washington Nationals. In calmer times, I might have gone down to Nationals Park on Wednesday to watch Paula Deen, various Nats and their wives, and team employees form a Ham Brigade to deliver "more than 100,000 servings of donated protein" to Capital Area Food Bank as part of...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 5:41 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Nats  
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Arrington: Haynesworth "might as well forget about it" in D.C.

(2004 photo by John McDonnell - TWP) Daniel Snyder's comments about Albert Haynesworth last weekend weren't extensive, and they weren't fiery. They also weren't very vague. "I'm disappointed he's not here. Absolutely," Snyder said. "We're expecting our players to lead by example, and we're expecting our players to understand...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 4:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (45)
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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Vonnie Holliday on Haynesworth

(By Toni L. Sandys - TWP) I'm on the record thinking it's a fine idea to ask anyone mildly associated with the Redskins, including the guy who occasionally delivers pizza to the media hut, what he or she thinks about Albert Haynesworth. That said, I wasn't expecting to hear...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 1:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
Categories:  Redskins  
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Steve Buckhantz's lottery reaction

(Via reader Tim Jones.) More than one person has already told me they let out a dagger on Tuesday night, or asked me whether Steve Buckhantz might have done the same. Figured I should go to the source, to see whether he actually employed his signature call. "There was...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 12:14 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Media , Wizards  
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Flip Saunders praises John Wall

Flip Saunders was on the Junkies Wednesday morning, sounding about as happy as he's sounded in six months of media appearances. He didn't exactly say who the team would pick, but when asked about John Wall, he didn't run away and hide either. "I think there's no question John...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 11:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Wizards  
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John Wall wants to play in front of Obama

I'm not sure if it's even lazy Internet hyperbole anymore to talk about Barack Obama as a recruiting tool for D.C. sports teams, even if he doesn't root for them. Maybe "Obama" is just the primary cultural landmark for athletes who have never been to D.C., but his name was...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 19, 2010; 8:16 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Wizards  
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Ernie Grunfeld's good-luck charm

Irene Pollin rather famously wore her late husband's championship ring Tuesday night, when the Wizards won the draft lottery. And Ernie Grunfeld? He busted out a necklace. "It's something I got from my father when I was about six years old," Grunfeld told Comcast SportsNet's Chris Miller after the...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 18, 2010; 11:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  Media , Wizards  
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Wiz win lottery, the video

"I know Mr. Pollin had his finger in this pie someplace," Ted Leonsis said after the Wiz won the lottery. "It's a great thing for the franchise. Having had a first [overall] pick in the NHL, and seeing how that turned out, I think this is a great day...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 18, 2010; 9:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Wizards  
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Wizards win draft lottery. Really

Five quick observations on the Wizards winning the draft lottery. No, really, the Wizards won the draft lottery. I swear, I just saw it myself. Fine, hang on, I'll check. Yup, the Wizards just won the draft lottery. Just right now. Really. 1) Ted Leonsis is charmed. I mean,...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 18, 2010; 8:39 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (57)
Categories:  Wizards  
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Joe Gibbs's favorite Russ Grimm story

As Russ Grimm's induction date approaches, there will be plenty more stories from the past. Most, with any luck, will involve alcohol. Joe Gibbs was on John Riggins's radio show on WTOP 103.5 HD-3 thiss week, and Riggo asked Gibbs about the man they called Rusty. "The one thing...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 18, 2010; 3:38 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Redskins  
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Manute Bol hospitalized

Former Washington Bullets center Manute Bol was hospitalized in Northern Virginia with kidney failure and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome last week, according to a friend and associate. Tom Prichard, who has worked with Bol on building a school in Sudan through the group Sudan Sunrise, said that Bol was returning from...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 18, 2010; 2:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Wizards  
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D.C.'s second-most popular athlete?

Chatting at 11:30. Submit questions here. I've occasionally done this thing where I attempt to rank D.C.'s top six athletes in local popularity. Yes, people can define the word "popular" in slightly different ways, but we all basically know what it means. The drama used to be about who...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 18, 2010; 9:15 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (76)
Categories:  Caps , Nats , Redskins , Wizards  
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The Nats and the junkheap

(By Toni L. Sandys - TWP) The Nationals' rise to something sunnier than mediocrity has yielded lots of amazing numbers, and will surely yield lots more for as long as it continues. This, though, is one of the greatest. Fabulous local columnist Thom Loverro -- now writing for ESPN980.com...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 17, 2010; 3:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Media , Nats  
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McNabb pursuing Obama opportunities

The first time Donovan McNabb met the D.C. media, he dropped in a mention about wanting to meet Barack Obama. Soon after, he posted a video, asking to play basketball with the President. The quarterback went to the same high school as Michelle Obama's brother, and one of his first...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 17, 2010; 12:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  Redskins  
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Wizards + Draft Lottery = Disaster

Tom Gugliotta is second from the left, wearing a lucky suit and carrying a rabbit's foot. Tuesday night is the NBA draft lottery. The Wizards have the fifth-best odds of winning, checking in at 10.3 percent. But in your heart, you already know that misery approaches. And it smells...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 17, 2010; 11:32 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (47)
Categories:  Wizards  
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Smoot says McNabb will love D.C.

When last we heard from Fred Smoot, he was promising us a Waffle House near 14th and U. Because someone in this town still does actual reporting, a City Paper writer called Waffle House, which responded that "An associate of Fred's has been in contact with Waffle House, however...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 17, 2010; 10:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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McNabb wants to end career in Washington

(By John McDonnell - TWP) Donovan McNabb's arrival in Washington added yet another star to the "but will he sign an extension?" queue. Will Adam Dunn sign an extension? Will Nicklas Backstrom sign an extension? Will McNabb sign an extension? The men have different stock answers. Here, for example,...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 17, 2010; 9:13 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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Clint Didier's Redskins-themed campaign video

Something about playing in D.C. must really fire the political urges in the loins of athletes. Heath Shuler played for the Redskins, then joined Congress. Dave Bing emerged at Spingarn, then became the mayor of Detroit. And Clint Didier, after starring at tight end for the Redskins, is attempting...

By Dan Steinberg  |  May 17, 2010; 12:54 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Redskins  
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