Watchdog

Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

NBC looks forward to NHL playoff 'hatred'

J.T. Miller of the Rangers collides with Tye

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Sam Flood, NBC Sports’ executive producer and a former hockey captain at Williams College, often has spoken of the benefits of “hatred’’ to televised hockey.

Monday he was at it again, saying of the 2014 NHL postseason matchups: “We think it’s going to add a whole new degree of hatred on ice . . . When there’s this kind of familiarity there is more energy.’’

Flood in part credited the...

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Rangers playoff tickets are high flyers

Montreal Canadiens' Travis Moen, left, celebrates a goal

(Credit: AP)

Tickets to the Flyers-Rangers series are averaging higher asking prices than those of any other first-round NHL playoff matchup, according to the secondary market site aggregator TiqIQ.com.

As of Monday, the average for the series was $292.24 – boosted by a whopping $429.50 for games at the Garden. Game 1 Thursday was averaging $337.66, with a low of $161.

The least expensive average...

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Golf Channel covers 'Arnie,' from tea to greens

Jack Nicklaus, left, and Arnold Palmer touch fists

(Credit: AP / David J. Phillip)

“Arnie,” a three-part series about guess-who that premieres on Golf Channel at 10 p.m. Sunday night, is an impressively ambitious undertaking that involved more than 100 interviews and a trove of cool video images.

Part I focuses on his childhood, his family life, his pioneering role in sports business and marketing, and his relationships with Jack Nicklaus and his fans. Part II gets down...

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Drake is wrapped up in Leafs

Rihanna and Drake, seen here in 2011, are

(Credit: Getty Images / Jeff Gross)

ESPN announced Wednesday that Drake will host the ESPYS this summer, making him the first black, Jewish, Canadian rapper ever to do so.

What Drake is not is the first avid hockey fan tabbed for the honor. Last year’s host, the actor Jon Hamm, is a St. Louis Blues supporter and said before the show the person he most would like to play in a movie is Gordie Howe.

Drake has taken Internet...

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O's Angel aces Jeter call

Derek Jeter throws during batting practice before a

(Credit: Getty Images / Al Bello)

Remember Monday when John Sterling, Michael Kay and Derek Jeter himself all wrongly anticipated a ball he hit deep to leftfield at Yankee Stadium would land over the wall?

It prompted Newsday copy editor Craig Bustin to ask the sort of question good copy editors ask: Did the Orioles’ announcers get it right?

So I listened to Joe Angel, the O’s radio play-by-play voice and long-ago partner...

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ESPN recalls 'Hillsborough' disaster

In this April 15, 1989 file photo, showing

(Credit: AP)

As horrific as the events of April 15, 1989, at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, England, were, it is a too-familiar story in the United Kingdom, given the deaths of 96 soccer fans and the quarter century of ripple effects that followed.

What figures to add to the impact of the documentary “Hillsborough,’’ which premieres Tuesday on ESPN, on this side of the Atlantic is the fact even for...

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Tribeca looks back at Knicks' glory days

Knicks player Walt Frazier joins Phil Jackson at

(Credit: AP / Mark Lennihan)

Madison Square Garden announced last month an agreement to purchase 50 percent of Tribeca Enterprises, owner of the Tribeca Film Festival and its eight-year-old subset, the Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival.

So what could be more appropriate for the gala premiere Thursday than “When the Garden was Eden,’’ director Michael Rapaport’s look back – based on Harvey Araton’s book – at the Knicks’...

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Drake will host ESPYs July 16

ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 05: Drake attends the

(Credit: Getty Images / Ronald Martinez)

Drake, the world's most prominent black, Jewish, Canadian rapper, will host the ESPYS July 16 in Los Angeles, the Worldwide Leader announced Wednesday.

"This is an incredible opportunity for me to combine two of my biggest passions - sports and performing," he said in a news release.

Said ESPN Films poobah Connor Schell:“Drake is an unbelievably talented entertainer who truly has a passion...

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UConn, Notre Dame women score big TV ratings

Bria Hartley of the Connecticut Huskies drives to

(Credit: Getty)

Connecticut's 79-58 victory over Notre Dame in Tuesday night's NCAA women's basketball finale scored solid ratings on ESPN despite the lopsided score.

The game averaged 3.1 percent of homes in 56 major markets, the highest such rating for a women's game since 2004 and the fourth-highest on record on ESPN in data dating to 2000.

The Hartford/New Haven market averaged a remarkable 29.3...

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Darryl Strawberry finds new path in life

Meet Darryl Strawberry and Dave Winfield at Steiner

(Credit: AP / Ron Frehm)

Darryl Strawberry sits down with Fran Healy in the next episode of “The Game 365,’’ premiering on MSG Plus Monday night, to discuss his latest chapter as a preacher and ministry leader who has opened a series of “recovery centers’’ under his name.

The episode includes video of Strawberry addressing an audience in Lynchburg, Virginia, saying, “I grew up in a really dysfunctional situation....

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