Tasty, yes, but a little bitter

Some random thoughts while I polish off a plate of honeybaked ham and potatoes au gratin that my wife (who dropped off our under-the-weather son at his after-school program so she could attend her company's holiday party) brought home tonight:

~ Now that Jim Balsillie, co-CEO of Research in Motion (the maker of Blackberry wireless devices), has apparently dropped his $175 million deal to buy the Pittsburgh Penguins, I'm proposing that the Seminole Tribe of Florida, which just paid $965 million for the Hard Rock chain of casinos, hotels and restaurants, buys the team and moves it to one of its tax-free properties in Florida.

My motivation for this deal is purely selfish. I'd have a field day making monthly trips to wherever the team would relocate to hound Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Jordan Staal and Marc-Andre Fleury.

~ You know, I thought hockey players were tough. I read that Carolina's Andrew Ladd will miss the next two to four weeks after undergoing an emergency appendectomy on Thursday.

Now, I know that a recuperative period follows every surgery, but the managing editor of Florida's best newspaper, the St. Petersburg Times, missed only one week of work after having the same surgery.

Granted, journalism isn't even in the same league as ice hockey, not even close, but one would think that Ladd's time off would be shorter, rather than longer.

~ Finally, I wouldn't be surprised if the Tampa Bay Lightning pull off a deal before Christmas. General manager Jay Feaster told the St. Petersburg Times that he's ready to pull the trigger on a trade that would shake the team out of its funk of mediocity: "The knob is turned up high and the water is boiling right over the side."

An addendum (12.20.06): The holiday trade freeze is in place, and the Lightning didn't make a deal.

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