I have no idea if the story is true, but it sure beats the first draft of the Thomas Jones story, huh?

Did the Cardinals running back end his season — and break his right hand — tap-dancing on the head of a 6-foot-6, 295-pound barber outside the men's room of a Scottsdale nightclub?

Or, as Jones contended before he dropped out of sight, about $135,000 poorer — did he break it innocently reaching for a telephone at home (wearing a Boy Scout uniform and watching the 700 Club, no doubt).

Hey, I'm just happy the guy hit somebody this year. We'll have to wait for Jones to return phone calls to get the latest side of his story. Take it slow, Thomas.


I'm not sure when sports lost the all-important round of “Rock, Paper, Scissors,'' that pushed the annual Westminster dog show onto the sports pages.

But if possible, I care even less about the event after learning Joe Garagiola Sr. has been euthanized by the USA Network after a nine-year run as play-by-play man.

The 76-year-old Garagiola was replaced by former “Early Show'' weatherman Mark McEwen and given no reason for the move.

“They just said they were going to go in a different direction. What's different?'' Garagiola told the Washington Post. “They can tell you the camel's got two humps — you're gone!" Joe Sr. will call even more Diamondbacks games this summer with Rod Allen gone and Jim Traber's role reduced.

So he'll still get to call a few dog shows when the Padres and Brewers come to Bank One Ballpark.


Speaking of the Padres — and dogs — San Diego's new downtown ballpark, slated to open in 2004, will be named PETCO Park.

I can see Arizona heading over for a big three-game series at “The Dish.'' Can't wait to sample the chow at the concession stands — how about Cycle 3 for overweight fans?

Word is some great promotions are on the horizon. On opening day, the first 20,000 fans 18-and-under are eligible for a free spay or neutering. Flea-and-Tick-Bath Night should be a big game on July 4, although plans for Deworming Night still must gain approval of local authorities.

That'll teach you D-Backs fans to complain about missing out on a few bobbleheads.


Arizona is atop the college basketball polls again, after Florida was stomped into submission by Kentucky last week. I think George O'Leary was the coach at Notre Dame longer than the Gators were No. 1.

• No truth to the rumor that after the first overtime of the NBA All-Star game, baseball commissioner Bud Selig called Atlanta pleading for the event to be declared a tie.

If you are scoring at home, that's three of the last four All-Star games (NBA, NHL and MLB) that ended regulation play deadlocked, and one that sent the fans home booing.

• It's that time of year again — New York Rangers general manager (fill in the blank) takes on more payroll (Alexei Kovalev) in a futile attempt to steer a bloated, misguided team into the playoffs. With the $4 million cash the Rangers had to give Pittsburgh for the right to pay Kovalev, their payroll is now creeping up on $80 million. They are the New York Yankees of the NHL — give or take 24 championships.

• Phil Mickleson shot an 80 in the final round of the Pebble Beach Pro-Am on Sunday, and finished 22 shots behind winner Davis Love III. Hey, think about how bad it could have been if Phil were forced to use Tiger Woods' inferior golf equipment?

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