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Providence great Jimmy Walker dies at 63

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This and that


Each week I'll talk about the world of sports…

• What a historic weekend in the world of baseball. Barry Bonds hit his 755th home run off Padres pitcher Clay Hensley. That's right, he tied Hank Aaron for the major league home run record! Alex Rodriguez hit his 500th career home run, blasting one of Kyle Davies of the Royals on the same day as Bonds' 755th. Then Tom Glavine got his 300th win as the Mets beat the Cubs Sunday night. My friends, I don't think we will see too many more 300-game winners in our lifetime. It is special to celebrate milestones in sports and this was a memorable weekend.

• Tiger Woods simply loves playing at Akron. He won again at Firestone Country Club, coming from behind to beat Rory Sabbatini and the field and the Bridgestone Invitational. I guess fatherhood is working out just fine for Tiger! He was dominant in the final round, coasting to his third straight championship at this event. He trailed by one shot entering that final round and ended up winning by eight strokes … wow!

• I was thrilled to be involved with a record-breaking performance. That's right, the Jimmy V Foundation Wine Festival in Napa Valley, California raised an amazing record $3.9 million! Wow, that is awesome, baby with a capital A! I just wanted to thank all of the people involved in the wonderful event, and congrats to chairman Bob Lloyd for a job well done. My friends, it is so important to find a cure and beat the dreaded disease of cancer, and this will go a long way in that battle. If you want to contribute, call 1-800-4-JIMMY V. The life you help save could be that of someone you know and love.

• It has been a tough stretch recently, losing quality people. There was the passing of Wake Forest basketball coach Skip Prosser, a great family man and teacher. He was a super human being and a major asset to college athletics who is missed. Former Niners and Stanford coach Bill Walsh left us; he built offensive football philosophies as well as anyone. That was why he was called The Genius! Walsh played a vital part in the lives of so many coaches. Then former baseball player, coach and ESPN analyst Bill Robinson died. A lot of people may not remember him but he was a solid major leaguer. He was class personified.

• I really feel the Eastern Conference of the NBA has improved dramatically. Start with the Celtics and the deals that sent Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen to Beantown. The Celtics used to have a great trio with Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish, and now they have another superstar threesome when you add veteran Paul Pierce with Garnett and Allen. The Knicks added Zach Randolph from Portland, and if he can stay out of trouble in the Big Apple, he will be a factor for Isiah Thomas' team. Charlotte added Jason Richardson from Golden State. Orlando signed Rashard Lewis from Seattle. The Western Conference is still very strong and the addition of Kevin Durant and Greg Oden solidified the Sonics and Blazers.

• In Boston, the Red Sox nation had to be smiling with the addition of Eric Gagne in the bullpen. He will mainly serve as a set-up man for Jonathan Papelbon, who is enjoying a super season in his own right. The Red Sox are looking for big things out of Gagne. The Braves also made a big deal before the trade deadline, acquiring Mark Teixeira from the Texas Rangers. He is a bonafide star who adds pop in that lineup. He got off to a quick start for Bobby Cox's club. The Mets made a nice move adding Luis Castillo from the Twins. That's a nice double play combo with Castillo and Jose Reyes. That duo has a lot of speed on the basepaths, making manager Willie Randolph happy.

• The Michael Vick story remains in the headlines, and last week one of those charged in the case decided to plead guilty. That cannot be good news for Mr. Vick. The big question remains, why did this happen? Why did someone decide to destroy dogs? It is all about making decisions and in the case of Vick, he clearly did not make good decisions in his personal life. I have said many times speaking across America, I have said that it is so important to know the people you are associating with. This has brought embarrassment and humiliation to him and his family.

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