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SI View The Week in TV Sports


Saturday 5/1

Kentucky Derby
ABC 4:30 PM

"And they're off!" Where else besides tracks such as Churchill
Downs can you get away with this sentence that begins with a
conjunction and ends with a preposition? Answer: The Playboy
Mansion. Today future studs Adonis, Cat Thief, Menifee and
Vicar, and the Bob Baffert-trained gelding General Challenge
(right, winning the Santa Anita Derby) are expected to contend
with the filly Three Ring and possibly Baffert's female
Excellent Meeting. A few tips: 1) No filly has won here since
Winning Colors in 1988, 2) the post-time favorite last won in
'79 (Spectacular Bid), and 3) the last two winners, Silver Charm
and Real Quiet, both Baffert's, placed at Santa Anita. Prime
Timber, 1999's runner-up, also is a Baffert horse.


Saturday 5/1

New York City PBA Experience

Talk about Spin City. Seeking to lure Big Apple TV execs into
taking note of its sport, the Professional Bowlers Association
is staging the championship round of the Long Island Open
outdoors in midtown Manhattan's Bryant Park. In case of rain,
organizers of the event will have a canopy at the ready but
admit that they have no plans yet for removing the city's
legendary rats from the gutters. Of even more concern is that
Gotham's most lethal vermin, real estate brokers, will, upon
finding such a large expanse of unoccupied hardwood floor, rent
the space before the 10th frame.

Sunday 5/2

CART Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix

One Marlboro Man is dead, and another is gasping. As of last
Thursday, in 46 states billboards advertising cigarettes,
including those featuring the original puff daddy, had to be
removed as stipulated by a lawsuit settlement involving the
tobacco industry. Meanwhile, Al Unser Jr., whose number 2
Marlboro racer dominated the Indy Car circuit earlier this
decade, is on a 56-race winless streak. Little Al opened this
season by crashing (and suffering a broken right ankle) on the
first lap of the Marlboro Grand Prix. The two-time series
champion returns to action today on the one-mile oval in
Nazareth, Pa.

Indians at Rangers

If you've seen the kickass opening number for The Drew Carey
Show, then you already know: Cleveland rocks! Baseball's only
team with the doctors' recommended daily amount of Alomars (dos)
was off to a 12-5 record through Sunday, thanks to a starting
lineup in which everyone but leftfielder David Justice was
batting better than .300. Rightfielder Manny Ramirez already had
25 RBIs. Heading into the hitter-friendly Ballpark in Arlington,
Tribe sluggers could further salivate over the prospect of
facing a beleaguered Texas pitching staff that had a 5.63 ERA,
fourth worst in the league.

Wednesday 5/5

Trail Blazers at Lakers
TBS 10:30 PM

Now that Dennis Rodman has a better chance of appearing on Divas
Live! than in an NBA game, the Lakers (27-18 through Sunday) may
finally put down their cell phones and resemble a top-tier
team.... Nah. Among Pacific Division clubs it would appear that
only Portland (32-11) received the Michael's-retired,
it's-anyone's-title memo. True, on April 20 the Slackers showed
heart in coming back from a 28-point deficit to beat the
Warriors, but the 10-deep Blazers are 2-0 against L.A. this




Madison Square Garden Network's rating in the New York area last
Friday for the return of Blue Jay David Wells to Yankee Stadium.
Boomer's perfect game for New York last May 17 did a 4.5.


In 1967 actor-singer John Davidson appeared in Disney's movie
The Happiest Millionaire. Next autumn ABC (owned by Disney) will
take over NHL broadcast rights from Fox. If the folks at
Mousetown are smart, their first hire will be the other John
Davidson, who scooped everyone on Wayne Gretzky's retirement and
is widely considered the Great One of hockey analysts. When
negotiating, JD should demand to be made the happiest zillionaire.