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A drawn out series better for all concerned


There’s a basketball game tomorrow night?


This has been a rather difficult, long wait, hasn’t it been? And the reasons are obvious and logical and there’s no sense complaining about it because it’s no one’s fault, really.

If either the Warriors or Cavaliers would have met any legitimate opposition in the conference finals we wouldn’t have been in this predicament and if the TV networks had been just a tad more flexible that would have helped, too.

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But schedules are schedules, sweeps and five-game series happen and the week’s been pretty boring and full of quiet days.

Get used to it.

Once this thing gets rolling tomorrow out in Oakland, it’s going to take forever to unfold.
There are two days off between Games 1 and 2; two more down days between Games 2 and 3, the same relaxed schedule between Games 4 and 5 and five and six and six and seven if it goes on that long.

(I don’t think it will but you’ll have to wait until I file later today to find out why)

The reason is simple: The NBA wants to build in easy travel coast to coast so that the players are at as close to their best as they can be for such an important series and I have no problem with that.

The old schedule – which basically was a game every other day – truly was taxing on the travel end, those are long, tiring days and the cumulative effect was significant.

Stretching it out the way they have allows for a clear travel day to get from one city to the next and then a day to work to get ready and, in the end, everyone’s better off for it.

And since they’ve gone back to a 2-2-1-1-1 format – which is also far more fair to the team with the homecourt advantage than the old 2-3-2 schedule – the off days basically double.

The outlier, of course, and the thing I’d change immediately, is the two days off between Games 1 and 2 and that’s TV driven.
There’s no travel, everyone’s basically rested anyway and no one really needs more breaks but I guess Thursday-Sunday fits the broadcast world better than Friday-Sunday, which is what it would be if I ran the world.

This schedule will not allow for any real rhythm to the series but given the benefits of rest and the chance to catch a quiet day that includes a rather long flight, I think they got it right the way they’ve set it up.

Now, if anyone’s got any great off-day story ideas to help me fill the space and time, I’m all ears.

This works, right?

I have no idea how this caught my attention – it had to have been the tweeter machine because where else? – but I did have a chuckle reading it and it’s one of the best “where are they now” things that I can recall.

And maybe it caught my eye because when Super Son was a tiny little tot we spent an awful, awful lot of time watching Blue’s Clues and I can only suspect that was because I had a lot Handy Dandy Notebooks floating around.

I bet if we searched the dark recesses of the closets or the basement we might even find a remnant or two.

I didn’t care a lot for Steve – seemed a bit smarmy, if I recall – and the show got old quick.

Now if we want to talk kiddie shows and cool characters, let’s talk about Swiper from Dora the Explorer.

That was one cool fox.

(Okay, that’s the kind of stuff that bounces around in my head and if you can figure out why, let me know).

All right, flight’s just after noon – Toronto-Minneapolis-San Francisco, of course – so if you want to load me up with mail to do on the journey, go right ahead.

It’s askdoug@thestar.ca and let me know what’s on your mind.

Scheduling note:

With five nights – and five mornings – coming on the west coast, I have no idea what time we’ll get this stuff up each day. If I know me, it’ll take two or three days for me to figure out the non-sleeping patterns so it might be the usual for a little while but eventually, this 8:30 a.m. Eastern self-imposed deadline is gong to disappear.

But fear not, we’ll be here daily through the series and if there’s anything specific you’re interested in, let me know.

I have no idea what in the world would possess someone to want to throw a catfish onto the ice at a hockey game, I have no idea what in the world would possess anyone to throw anything on any field of play at any sports event but, man, this story lays out in detail just how that thing unfolded in Pittsburgh the other night.

But someone really has to explain to me what kind of person you have to be to come up with the hair-brained scheme in the first place.