- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 14, 2008

TONIGHT’S BEST BET ON TELEVISION

Will Shaq finally play? Phoenix plays host to Dallas. 10:30 p.m., TNT

THEY SAID WHAT?

“We got our tail kicked. … We’ll have a positive out of it someway.” — Kentucky hoops coach Billy Gillispie after a 41-point loss at Vanderbilt on Tuesday

LOCAL POWER RANKINGS

1. Jim Zorn

The out-of-nowhere choice to coach the Redskins, his honeymoon period will be interesting: possibly short because he was the surprise hire or lengthy because fans will blame The Danny for any struggles.

2. Lastings Milledge

The Nationals are gearing up for spring training, and the addition of the former Mets outfielder could give the offense a lift and means one thing: Nook Logan won’t be popping out 11 times a week.

3. Gilbert Arenas

No. 0 is still recovering from knee surgery, but as losses mount (eight straight entering last night), does shutting Arenas down instead of having him back for a first-round playoff exit make more sense?

4. Chad Johnson

If the Redskins trade for this superstar receiver/occasional problem and give him a gigantic contract, it officially will signal a return of the pre-Coach Joe days when anything went in terms of personnel.

5. Roy McCauley

Most have never heard of him, but he’s the biggest local connection to Sunday’s Daytona 500. The Davidsonville, Md., native (about 15 miles southwest of Annapolis) is Ryan Newman’s crew chief.

TWT FIVE — Why Joe Gibbs should like NASCAR better than the NFL

1. No pressure. Team owner Joe is responsible for a lot less than Coach Joe. As long as his Sharpie doesn’t run out and he provides good stories to the sponsors, he’s in good shape.

2. Limited free agency. This was of course a bugaboo for Coach Joe during his second tour with the Redskins. He lost out on Dale Earnhardt Jr. (who wasn’t going to leave Chevy) but scored Kyle Busch.

3. No instant replay. Coach Joe and challenges — except for the Minnesota game in Week 16 — were always an adventure. No red flag now, no problem.

4. Gets to live in North Carolina. Being close to the grandbabies was a key in Joe’s decision to leave the Redskins. Monday through Thursday each week, he can play the full-time role of grandpa.

5. The money is still good. Joe doesn’t have to answer questions four times a week, doesn’t have to study film 15 hours a day and doesn’t have to face the Cowboys … but his checkbook won’t suffer that much.

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