And so we pull in, creakily, to the last day of the week.
Herewith, a rummage through the metaphorical office fridge for a few odds and sods:
First up, a big old plate of the Kid.
Gary Carter was larger-than-life, the first guy to wear a ‘Spos cap in Cooperstown, a hustling, smiling hitting machine, and along with Andre Dawson and Tim Raines pretty much the best thing about this writer’s childhood.
His finest day may have been as a Met, but he’ll always be an Expo.
Jeff Blair’s Globe piece on Carter is a must read. Money anecdote: former Expo Warren Cromartie wandering into the clubhouse only to see Carter patiently showing Cromartie’s young son how to tie his shoes “like a big-leaguer.”
Shaking Nelson Mandela’s hand is a neat experience, but we can’t remember ever having been as star-struck as the time Carter wandered up to chat with a bunch of Montreal baseball writers during batting practice at the Big O in the 2001 season.
Carter could also be a complicated character, as The Gazette’s Ian MacDonald, who covered the team for most of its life in Montreal points out here.
Teammates used to call him “Lights,” with a mixture or fondness and derision, although in our limited experience, Carter was as warm and engaging as Dawson was chilly and aloof.
He was only 57 when he died, there are a lot of hearts at half-mast in Montreal today.
Thankfully, this morning’s news isn’t all sombre, because – omigod, omigod, omigod – we actually have A TRADE in the NHL! Our old friend Dominic Moore, multi-lingual Harvard grad, is off to the left coast (along with a seventh-round pick) to join the San Jose Sharks.
As usual, he was traded for a second-round choice – the same price the Habs paid the Florida Panthers for him in 2010, and that the Buffalo Sabres forked over to Toronto the previous season.
Moore will be an unrestricted free agent in June, which is why also-ran Tampa decided to cash in – Steve Yzerman now has three second-round picks in June, so he might be able to parlay a couple into a late first-round pick.
Or maybe he’ll do the Ken Holland thing and do his shopping in the second – seems to work well for the Red Wings.
Moore should help the Sharks, he’s good on faceoffs and has wheels – he also likes to read books, which is a little suspect, isn’t it?
Anyhow, Moore also thrives in the playoffs and has played on conference finalists in each of the last two years, so pencil San Jose into the final four.
Finally, the Calgary Flames earned an overtime point in Dallas on Thursday night, and the Jets notched a shootout victory on Evander-Kane-can’t-be-stopped night – three Canadian-based NHL teams are holding down playoff spots, two more are within four points or less, which should make for some boffo television ratings over the next few weeks.
The other talking point in Dallas was the injury suffered by Stars’ All-Star Jamie Benn, who accidentally got slashed by a skate. Scary stuff, but apparently not serious.