Search

Game Plan

Dec. 08, 2008
Dec. 08, 2008

Table of Contents
Dec. 8, 2008

SI Players: LIFE ON AND OFF THE FIELD
Sportsman of the Year
PRO FOOTBALL
COLLEGE FOOTBALL
PRO BASKETBALL
HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL
BASEBALL
BOXING
HOCKEY
Stanton Barrett
Inside
Departments

Game Plan

What smart fans should do this week

• READ
The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac
Ever wonder what would happen if Bill James and Mars Blackmon got together? Produced by the writers of the hoops blog FreeDarko, the illustrated Almanac combines player analysis with witty cultural commentary (whose jersey should you wear to a wedding?). Welcome to the 21st-century NBA, where style counts as much as stats.

This is an article from the Dec. 8, 2008 issue

• SEE
Back Back Back
Jose Canseco's acting career hasn't taken off, but you can see him onstage. Sort of. Playwright Itamar Moses's off-Broadway play follows Raul, Kent and Adam (thinly disguised versions of Canseco, Mark McGwire and onetime A's teammate Walt Weiss), who wrestle with the morality of steroid use and how it strained their friendship. Until Juiced: The Movie drops, this has to do.

• WATCH
Alexi Lalas pay off a bet
During the MLS playoffs, former player/exec and ESPN analyst Lalas said that if the New York Red Bulls beat Real Salt Lake, he would shotgun a can of the beverage that gave New York its name. They won, and he did—but first he made a funny video documenting his training for the explosive moment. (Watch it at Goal.com.) Remember, kids, shotgunning is 50% mental and 60% physical.

• FOLLOW
The winter meetings
Shotgun marriages, big paydays, regrettable decisions—what took baseball's off-season bazaar so long to get to Las Vegas? The meetings begin in Sin City on Monday; when they wrap, CC Sabathia, Manny Ramirez and Mark Teixeira could have new teams. With round-the-clock coverage on XM (radio) and MLB.com (video), what happens in Vegas won't stay there.

• WATCH
Conference title games
The SEC (Alabama-Florida), Big 12 (Missouri-Oklahoma) and ACC (Boston College--Virginia Tech) settle championships on Saturday. Is 'Bama beatable? Does Mizzou have a chance? Will BC ever run out of Fluties? Former QB Doug's nephew Billy Flutie helped the Eagles get into the ACC final with a TD pass on a fake field goal against Maryland last Saturday.

The Pop Culture Grid

View this article in the original magazine

How do sports stars fit in?First petMost I'd pay for front-row inauguration ticketsMy signature cologne is ...______ is hazardous to my healthCraziest thing I ever ate
ELTON BRAND Sixers FA dog named Frederick$10,000Fahrenheit by Christian Dior. Old schoolTelevisionCaviar (top)
GARY BRACKETT Colts LBA mutt named Battlecat$100Bond No. 9SmokingLiver
DAN ELLIS Predators GOf all the disgusting things, an albino gerbil$1,000Baldessarini by Hugo BossA puck to the headA fly
RODDY WHITE Falcons WRA blue pit bull named PsychoIt's priceless; it's like GenesisVersace. It lays the women flat outCigarettesA rib dish by my personal chef

INSIDE THE GRID

BRAND knocked back the tiny fish eggs with his agent, David Falk, and Brackett, who grew up in New Jersey, partook, reluctantly, of his father's wild game. "My dad used to hunt," he says. "He'd fry things with the food, and he always had the liver going. I was never a fan." But why did the goalie swallow the fly? "I had a bet when I was younger to eat one, and I took it down," Ellis says. "It was a little crunchy, but you get through it."

PHOTOJOEL SARTORE/NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC/GETTY IMAGES (FLY)PHOTOJAMES LANG/US PRESSWIRE (WHITE)PHOTOKYLE TERADA/US PRESSWIRE (ELLIS)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (BRACKETT)PHOTODAVID E. KLUTHO (BRAND)PHOTOLAWRENCE MANNING/CORBIS (NO-SMOKING SYMBOL)PHOTOKOKI IINO/MIXA/GETTY IMAGES (GERBIL)PHOTOWESTEND61/GETTY IMAGES (CAVIAR)PHOTO©2008 JOAN MARCUS (PLAY)PHOTOANDREW MCCLOSKEY (RED BULL)PHOTOMARTYN GODDARD/CORBIS (VEGAS SIGN)PHOTOMIKE ZARRILLI/GETTY IMAGES (FLUTIE)TWO PHOTOS