AREA POWER RANKINGS " WHO'S GENERATING BUZZ THIS WEEK IN THE D.C. AREA?
1. MANNY ACTA: He likes to joke about his career .236 batting average in the minors, but at that rate of success, the Nationals" manager should bat himself fifth in the order.
2. Phil Mickelson: Lost in the daily parades given to Tiger Woods is the fact Phil is playing the AT&T hoping his wrist is well enough for the British Open in two weeks.
3. Alana Beard: In this slow week, we find time for a Mystics reference. They still stink, but Beard's 18.5 points a game is sixth best in the league.
4. Jeff Fisher: Part III of our series speculating on Joe Gibbs' replacement: Fisher, who is under contract but might jump if the Danny offers enough.
5. Tom Thibodeau: Veteran NBA assistant hired by Wizards to improve the team's defense. His first bit of business is to convince Gilbert it's OK to play D.
TWT FIVE " MOST-INFLATED NHL free agent contracts
1. C Scott Gomez, Rangers (seven years, $51.5 million): They also signed C Chris Drury, so there was no reason to spend so much on another center.
2. LW Paul Kariya, Blues (three years, $18 million): Who knew he could command this much? Kariya scored only 24 goals last season for Nashville.
3. C Daniel Briere, Flyers (eight years, $52 million): Has only one season of more than 65 points. The Flyers might regret this deal in three years.
4. C Michal Handzus, Kings (four years, $16 million): Los Angeles struck out on the big names, so it overpaid for a guy who played in eight games last year.
5. LW Todd Bertuzzi, Ducks (two years, $8 million): Great teams can take chances on injury-prone, unproductive head-cases.
HE SAID WHAT?
"I didn't understand why we didn't play on Sunday. The weather was OK, so much better than [Tuesday], Monday and [Wednesday], too." — Rafael Nadal, not aware of the Wimbledon tradition of never playing on the middle Sunday
TONIGHT'S BEST BET ON TV
The area's newest golf tournament — the AT&T National (translation: Tiger's Show) — kicks off with three hours of coverage at 3 p.m. on the Golf Channel. The coverage will be re-run at 8:30 p.m.