Cleaning out the Duffel Bag: Maine hockey will struggle to reach .500, Sox trade looming, Pierce looks tired

Cleaning out the Duffel Bag while I’ve still got some daylight hours to see my thoughts….
— The biggest winner in Saturday’s Lawrence vs. Thornton Academy Class A state football game just might be the MPA. I’m thinking a lot of tickets are going to be sold to fans of these two schools.
— Here’s hoping the LA Lakers firing head coach Mike Brown doesn’t mean the same for the assistants. Remember Mainer Steve Clifford signed on as a Laker assistant during the off-season.
— So this Georgia State football program that UMaine played Saturday is going to play big boy FBS football next year? Really ?
— Ever notice when ESPN puts NASCAR race results on the crawl at the bottom of your TV picture — Joey Logano wins the Nationwide race in Phoenix, Danica Patrick finishes 10th…Why? Do you really want to know where she finishes every time she races?
— Want further proof of the NBA becoming a non-big man league? This year’s all-star ballot doesn’t list centers. You vote for three forwards and two guards…What in the name of Bill Russell is going on?
— UMaine hockey’s tough start means the Bears will have to go 16-9 the rest of the way to finish at .500.
— Wonder if Biddeford’s Brian Dumoulin knew the NHL lockout was going to last this long he would have stayed at BC instead of signing with Carolina. Remember he then got traded to Pittsburgh. He’s played 11 games with the Penguins AHL team, earning about $67,000 a year on a two way contract.
— I’m a Johnny Football fan!
— Speaking of football in the state of Mississippi, you need to see ESPN’s 30-for-30 special “The Ghosts of Ole Miss.” A real history lesson on sports and society in our country.
— The Red Sox sign a backup catcher, David Ross to a 2-year $6-million deal. They are looking into signing a closer from Japan… I smell a trade coming — make that several trades coming.
— OK, hear me out on this one…Your football team gets into the red zone. The other team commits a penalty. Half the distance to the goal line is where the ball is placed. If your team commits a penalty, your team is backed up whatever yardage the penalty is… Seems unfair.
— I know Paul Pierce can still put up good stats sometimes, but he looks slow and tired on many nights to me.
— And I would add this — the Celtics simply cannot win the NBA title with a starting center (KG) playing five minutes at a time.
— Let’s review the Patriots bye week…They make a trade for a guy (Aqib Talib) who has been suspended by the league for PED use. Their second leading rusher (Brandon Bolden) is suspended by the league for violating the policy on performance enhancing substances. Where’s the outcry in Patriots Nation? What if this had happened to the Red Sox in the middle of the season?
— Foxcroft’s Don Boyer is a heck of a runner!
— The sports broadcasting business has lost a great one. Jim Durham passed away last week at the age of 65. He was the lead play-by-play guy for the NBA on ESPN radio. No flash, just silky smooth. I’m not ashamed to say I borrowed a phrase or two from him over the years.