Shanoff's W.U.C.: Celts, Lions, Ovie, Rubio

Today's Calls: Ray Allen vs. Ben Gordon, Matt Stafford vs. Aaron Curry, Alex Ovechkin vs. the Rangers, Ricky Rubio vs. Stephen Curry, Justin Masterson vs. Jordan Zimmermann, Torry Holt vs. Michael Crabtree, Mike Brown vs. Stan Van Gundy, Dwight Gooden vs. the Mets and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: Take that, haters. ↵

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↵Boston will see your brilliant 42 points, Ben Gordon, and raise you Ray Allen's 28-point 2nd-half scoring binge, including the game-winning, soul-sucking 3 in the final seconds to reverse the momentum of the Celtics-Bulls series just as it looked like the defending champs were DOA. ↵

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↵You knew Allen was due after that sorry Game 1 performance. And Rajon Rondo reclaimed his star status from Derrick Rose by out-playing him last night. ↵

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↵But the startling stat was the rebounding margin: Celtics 50, Bulls 36 — including 21 offensive rebounds for Boston (to 8 for the Bulls), clearly the difference between the Celtics being down 0-2 after two games at home and salvaging a split with the series heading to Chicago. ↵

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↵The Bulls don't seem scared by the Celtics — and the United Center will feel a LOT more comfortable than the Garden — but with Allen's shot, the Celtics themselves no longer seem terrified of losing. ↵

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↵Spurs even it up: These NBA playoffs are becoming defined by individual brilliance. If the Gordon-Allen game of can-you-top-this didn't wear you out, Tony Parker's 38 was spectacular. ↵

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↵NBA Tonight: Two foregone conclusions (Cavs over Pistons and Lakers over Jazz) and one toss-up (Rockets at Blazers, after Houston won Game 1 in Portland). ↵

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↵NBA Awards Season: Mike Brown named Coach of the Year. I could have coached LeBron and Co. to 55 wins, just by showing up. My pick would have been Orlando's Stan Van Gundy, whose team actually out-performed expectations. (Did Brown? I say he didn't.) ↵

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↵NHL Playoffs: Nice to see the Caps aren’t folding entirely. (It was obviously Ovie's evil eye in the pre-game skate that hexed the Rangers.) ↵

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↵MLB Myopia! ↵

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↵— Yankees create new PED: The Stadium "wind tunnel." ↵

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↵— Red Sox back on track:Sweep O's in a.m. start. ↵

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↵— Rookie WatchZimmermann a rare Nats bright spot. ↵

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↵— What recession? Attendance down only 6.9 percent. ↵

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↵— Fantasy Stud:Nate McLouth (2-for-4, HR, 4 RBI, 2 R, SB) ↵

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↵NBA Draft: Ricky Rubio, the Spanish sensation, is in. He will be the No. 2 player selected after Blake Griffin — that is, unless what Derrick Rose did against the Celtics over the weekend reminds teams that the NBA is turning into a league led by point guards. In that case, Rubio could vault to No. 1. ↵

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↵What should Stephen Curry do? He hasn't made up his mind, yet. If you were him, what would YOU do? (For argument’s sake, assume you'd be a first-round NBA pick — perhaps even top half of the first round.) Mike DeCourcy lays out the pros and cons for you. Normally, I'm a "go pro!" person; in this case, I would stay in school for the final year. ↵

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↵More: Tyreke Evans is in. We have talked about this before: Before the draft evaluation process is over, Evans will rise into the Top 5, like O.J. Mayo did a year ago. ↵

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↵NFL (Mock) Draft: The Lions will take Matt Stafford. (At least according to SN's expert panel.) I don't buy the logic that a franchise left tackle is worth less than Stafford — both the Rams and the Ravens didn't seem to have a problem winning championships with first-round OTs and cast-off QBs. ↵

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↵NFL Hot Stove: Desperate for a receiver, the Jaguars sign Torry Holt, who certainly used to be good. (Drafting at No. 8, they wouldn't want — say — Jeremy Maclin? Maybe they can get Percy Harvin in Round 2, as SN's experts above have him dropping out of the first round entirely.) ↵

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↵The Jaguars are a poor man's Lions: No team has had more miserable experience acquiring WRs (Matt Jones and Reggie Williams as first-round draft picks; over-paying for Jerry Porter a year ago — they recently cut him.) ↵

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↵New Stadiums: The Mets are being tone-deaf about this Dwight Gooden autograph thing. ↵

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↵Uniform Watch: Lions get a new logo. There's a little bit more energy there, yes. I like that fans at the reveal were chanting for the team to draft Aaron Curry, not Matt Stafford. ↵

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↵The Last Word: The dream is over. Greg Paulus won't play quarterback for Michigan. ↵

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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. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/danshanoff. ↵

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

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