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Watching Preakness? Take the Points
May 15, 2009 - Neil Rudel
Fresh from his Kentucky Derby darkhorse selection of Hold Me Back, which finished 12th, my horse racing guru -- my dad, David Rudel, of course -- is a little more gunshy than he usually is after his Derby pick barely gets a call.
But at least he answered the phone Friday.
"Never mind," he said. "I'm a little disappointed in that blog you have. I had Big Brown last year, and you didn't mention that."
"Dad, you taught me never to pick the favorite, plus everybody had Big Brown."
He agreed (but I think he's sensitive to the fact that his reputation is now almost strictly tied to the 2003 Funny Cide pick).
Anyway, his -- ours if it's good -- pick in the Preakness is the No. 11 horse, Take the Points.
D.Rudel likes the old jockey, Edgar Prato, at a 30-1 shot. He likes the 8-5 favorite, too (Rachel Alexandra), but he knows he can't pick that horse because he set the rules that "anybody can pick the favorite."
FYI: The winning Derby jockey, Calvin Borel, is on Alexandra.
Localizing: Bellefonte's Jeremy Rose is riding No. 6, Terrain, a 30-1 shot.
So good luck to you today -- and to my dad.
The Lakers have lost their championship look.
They have unexpectedly stumbled through the NBA playoffs and face a Game 7 in the Western Conference semifinals against Houston. Very surprising, especially given the Rockets' absence of Yao Ming.
Rick Adelman has totally outcoached Phil Jackson in this series.
What looked like the NBA's dream Finals matchup of the Lakers vs. the Cavs -- Kobe vs. LeBron -- may not even happen. If the Lakers are fortunate enough to beat Houston, which is still likely given Game 7 is at the Staples Center, they may have too many problems to get by second-seeded Denver.
How about the trade that sent Allen Iverson to Detroit for Chauncey Billups?
Cleveland is well-rested and has faced almost no resistence in two series sweeps, though the Boston-Orlando winner should win at least one vs. the Cavs and maybe two.
LA's performance is making Cleveland's first NBA title -- coming at the expense of the Lakers or Denver -- more likely. In fact, a Cleveland-Denver series would not be a slam dunk for the Cavs.