Shanoff's Wake-Up Call: C's are McDice-Cold

↵Today's Calls: Antonio McDyess vs. KG, Scott Kazmir vs. Brandon Webb, Clayton Kershaw vs. Jay Bruce, Danica Patrick vs. Tiger Woods, Chris Osgood vs. Ashley Harkleroad and More! ↵

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↵The Opening Pitch: Ahh, now THOSE are the road Celtics we know and love. ↵

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↵I was a little worried there for a second after the Celtics restored home-court advantage with that Game 3 win in Detroit -- their first on the road this playoff season -- I thought they had turned a corner. ↵

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↵Last night's Motor City brick-fest, though, restored my faith in their inability to close the deal on the road. ↵

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↵That said, the Celtics weren't going to win that game. They weren't going to win TWO games on the road -- let alone consecutively, let alone against these prideful Pistons. They certainly weren't going to win shooting 31.8 percent from the field (no matter how many more free throws they shot). ↵

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↵Antonio McDyess had his most eye-opening game since Alabama demolished Penn in the 1995 NCAA Tournament. Dice's 21 and 16 eclipsed the established stars on the court, including Kevin Garnett. ↵

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↵Let's call this what it was: A reset. We are back to Boston having home-court advantage for two of the final best-of-three games. But something is different. Both teams have won on the road. Both teams have delivered complete throttlings at home. Result: There is actually a genuine sense of uncertainty about how this series will play out. ↵

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↵What more could you ask for? ↵

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↵Must-See YouTube of the Day: Jason Maxiell symbolizes the Celtics' shooting problems and puts a nasty rejection on KG. ↵

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↵NBA West Finals: Until the Lakers or the Spurs win on the road, this will not be a series. I don't expect the Lakers, up 2-1, to beat the Spurs in San Antonio in Game 4 tonight, but -- then again -- if they can manage it, this series would be all but over. ↵

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↵(More YouTube goodness: Kobe creates another piece of street theater when he "jumps" over a pool of snakes, with a little help from the Jackass team. OK, yes, Nike, you've got me: I want these shoes.) ↵

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↵MLB Instant History: Scott Kazmir is on fire. He has won four straight decisions, Monday's his best yet: 7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 10 K. ... ↵

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↵Stat of the Day: The Rays are only the second team in baseball history to have the majors' best record the Memorial Day following a season having the worst record. (1903 NY Giants) ↵

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↵(Meanwhile, fans in Tampa are kind of awful: Only 12,174 announced attendance for a Memorial Day game featuring a first-place club off to the best start in franchise history and the team's ace pitcher?) ↵

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↵The anti-Kazmir is Brandon Webb, who has now suffered two consecutive losses after his 9-0 start. There is "regression to the mean" and then there is just plain slumping. ... ↵

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↵When Bartolo Colon starts, you must pay attention: Boston's newest ace limited Seattle to 5 H and 1 ER in 7 IP, helping the Red Sox break a three-game losing streak -- and running his record to 2-0 in two starts. ↵

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↵The Phillies laid down a beat-down, a 20-5 win over the Rockies, including Chase Utley's 6(!) RBIs and a HR (his 16th). ↵

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↵Fantasy Watch: Jay Bruce. If you have the chance, grab the Reds OF prospect right now. As one of the top three most heralded rookie prospects of the season, someone in your league was probably already hording him, but you never know. And after he starts tonight for the big club, he won't be more available than he is right now. ↵

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↵Meanwhile, if you are very lucky, Dodgers rookie SP Clayton Kershaw might still available after his MLB debut Sunday (6 IP, 7 K). But I doubt it. ↵

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↵Walk-Off Watch: Garret Anderson got the walk-off walk -- arguably the most dramatic of all the walk-offs -- and the Angels broke a late-ending scoreless stalemate with the impotent Tigers. ↵

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↵MLB Hot Seats: Willie Randolph may still have a job, but when you have to meet with the boss, sometimes a "vote of confidence" is really a kiss of death. It won't help that the Mets got worked over by the Marlins yesterday. ↵

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↵(Can you believe Gary Carter is publicly lobbying for the Mets manager job? Look: Randolph might yet get axed, but there's no way they would hire Carter -- not after that classless move.) ↵
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↵One Thing You Should Know About the Stanley Cup Finals: The "Hot Goalie Theory" -- the notion that a hot goalie can carry a team through a series -- is in effect. Detroit's Chris Osgood had his second straight shutout in the Cup finals, and the Wings are up 2-0. ↵

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↵("Hot Goalie" extends to an intriguing subplot: The Penguins are accusing Osgood of acting his way to a couple of "goalie interference" calls in the Wings' favor. Osgood is admitting to nothing, but when you're hot, lots of things tend to go your way.) ↵

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↵Indy 500: IRL has a "Tiger Problem," and her name is Danica. Like golf, open-wheel racing has become a one-star sport. ↵

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↵Look at the Indy 500, which was won by Scott What's-His-Face (Dixon) but was really about Danica Patrick NOT winning. Even her post-pit-crash sulk felt like it got more coverage than the champ. That doesn't seem healthy. ↵

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↵(Golf has the same problem: Phil Mickelson had the most exciting 72nd hole of the year, but without Tiger competing while still recovering from knee surgery, it doesn't feel like anyone is really paying attention.) ↵
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↵NFL: Did Vince Young really almost quit football after his rookie year? Frankly, if he was ever going to think about quitting, it should have been after last season, not his first one. ↵

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↵NCAA Lacrosse Championships: Alumni pride. There isn't a more dominant team in Division I college sports -- pick any sport -- right now than Northwestern women's lacrosse, which won its fourth straight title this weekend. ↵

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↵Meanwhile, on the men's side, congrats to Syracuse for beating defending champ Johns Hopkins for the title. ↵

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↵Not just a matchup of the two most "classic" brands in college LAX, the game also set a new record for attendance at an outdoor NCAA championship event (apparently, the BCS doesn't count, which is ludicrous). ↵

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↵College Baseball Tournament: Miami is the team to beat as the No. 1 overall seed, but mirroring Florida in college hoops, two-time defending champ Oregon State didn't make the field. ↵

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↵(Better news for Florida: Its softball team is the No. 1 seed in the Women's College World Series.) ↵

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↵CFB Preseason Rankings: Spencer Hall has a must-read here. ↵

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↵Big Brown Triple Crown Alert: Having hoof problems? After the letdown of Smarty Jones at Belmont in 2004, it's good to have low expectations about this whole "Triple Crown" thing. ↵

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↵The Last Word: Ashley Harkleroad posing for Playboy is such a non-issue. Between lad mags, the swimsuit issue and the web, photos of athletes dressed scantily (or not at all) are common enough that "posing for Playboy" simply doesn't move the needle like it would have a decade ago. ↵

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↵Dan Shanoff writes The Wake-Up Call every weekday morning for SportingNews.com and blogs daily at DanShanoff.com. Got any comments, questions or feedback? Email Dan at shanofftsn-[at]-gmail-[dot]-com. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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