HOMEBioFilm rights, Screenplays, Representation2022 CommentariesOLYMPIC AFFAIR: HITLER'S SIREN AND AMERICA'S HEROTHE WITCH'S SEASONThird Down and a War to GoHORNS, HOGS, AND NIXON COMING'77: DENVER, THE BRONCOS, AND A COMING OF AGEMarch 1939: Before the MadnessPLAYING PIANO IN A BROTHELSave By RoyThey Call Me "Mr. De": The Story of Columbine's Heart, Resilience and RecoveryA Selection of Terry Frei's writing about World War II heroesOlympic Affair Excerpt: Chapter 1, Leni's VisitOlympic Affair Excerpt: Chapter 15, Aren't You Thomas Wolfe?The Witch's Season: Screenplay opening pagesThe Witch's Season Excerpt:Air Force Game, Bitter Protest, a Single ShotThird Down and a War to Go: Screenplay opening pagesThird Down and a War to Go Excerpt: Ohio State vs. WisconsinThird Down and a War to Go genesis: Grateful for the Guard, Jerry FreiThird Down and a War to Go: A Marines' game on GuadalcanalDave Schreiner, Badger and MarineBob Baumann, Badger and MarineLt. Col. John Mosley, Aggie and Tuskegee AirmanHorns, Hogs, and Nixon Coming: Prologue and screenplay opening pagesHorns, Hogs, and Nixon Coming Excerpt: James Street: Wishbone WizardHorns, Hogs, and Nixon Coming Subplot: The day they stopped playing DixieHorns, Hogs, and Nixon Coming: The Greg Ploetz Saga'77 Excerpt: AFC Title GameMarch 1939 Excerpt: First NCAA Title GameMarch 1939, Excerpt: The StartersPlaying Piano Excerpt: S.F. EarthquakeA Year with Nick Saban before he was NICK SABANTommy Lasorda and the Summer of '70Press CredentialsThe Sporting NewsDenver PostESPN.comThe OregonianGreeley TribuneKids' sports books: The ClassicsJon Hassler, Terry Kay and other favorite novelistsBig Bill Ficke's Big HeartBob Bell's Food For Thought

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2020 Archive  2019 Archive   2018 Archive    

   2017 Archive  Selected pre-2017 blogs

For 2021, scroll down 
I'll continue doing commentaries for my own site, and also writing for Mile High Sports Magazine and for milehighsports.com. As of the opening of Avalanche training camp in late September, I'll also be helping out old friend Adrian Dater by contributing frequent pieces on his Colorado Hockey Now web site. A selection of more evergreen pieces will be listed here. CHN is part of the Hockey Now network and does require a subscriptionHere's my Colorado Hockey Now archive, with many also accessible below. -- TF 

DECEMBER, click here or scroll down

December 31 -- Logan O'Connor: Better as pro than collegian

December 30 -- Johnson & Johnson had their one Olympic shot 

December 29 -- Nazem Kadri and COVID

December 24 --NHL has the right idea with holiday break 

December 20 -- Let's face it ... NHL will have to skip Olymics

December 17 -- Altitude vs. Comcast

December 16 --CSU All-American Trey McBride: It's unanimous!

December 14 -- Avalanche beat Rangers, confront COVID -- again

December 13 -- Clean hit on MacDonald; scary results

December 11 -- Ex-Wing Helm living up to Avs' hopes

December 8 -- Drury, Sakic -- fellow GMs, former teammates 

December 7 -- Norvell wins the news conference

December 6 -- Surprising hire: CSU lands Jay Norvell

December 6 -- Would Patrick Roy adapt as NHL GM?    

December 2 -- CSU bites the buyout and fires Addazio  





December 31, 2021

Logan O'Connor 

is better as pro

then as collegian 


Colorado Hockey Now 


Read it here




December 30, 2021

Avalanche's Johnson

& Johnson got their

one Olympic shot


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 




December 29, 2021

Nazem Kadri was in

COVID protocol, but

didn't miss any games



Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here





December 24, 2021

NHL has the

right idea with 

holiday break


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here






December 20, 2021

Let's face it ... NHL

is going to have to

skip Beijing Olympics


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here






December 17, 2021

Altitude Sports Network

vs. Comcast: Battle

isn't over yet   


Colorado Hockey Now 


Read it here 



December 16, 2021

CSU All-American

Trey McBride:

It's unanimous!


What struck me about Colorado State tight end Trey McBride Wednesday being confirmed as a unanimous first team All-American -- making all five of the NCAA's officially sanctioned All-America teams -- was that he had to be absolutely elite and dominant to pull it off. 


Keep reading 




December 14, 2021

Avalanche beat NYR,

but now have to confront

COVID ... again 



Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 




December 13, 2021

Clean hit on Avalanche's

MacDonald, but unfortunate

and scary result    


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 



December 11, 2021

Ex-Red Wing

Helm living up

to Avs' hopes 


Hockey Colorado Now


Read it here 




December 8, 2021

Rangers' Drury,

Avalanche's Sakic --

GMs, ex-road roomies 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here



December 7, 2021

Norvell wins

introductory news

conference in a rout  



 FORT COLLINS -- New Colorado State coach Jay Norvell won the introductory news conference / pep rally Tuesday as decisively as his Nevada Wolf Pack manhandled the Rams two weeks earlier at the same Canvas Stadium site.


Keep reading here



December 6, 2021

Surprising hire:

Colorado State

lands Norvell   



Jay Norvell was a surprise hire for Colorado State Monday.

And that's a compliment. 


Keep reading here 




December 6, 2021

Would Patrick Roy

adapt as NHL GM?  



Hockey Colorado Now


Read it here 




December 2, 2021


CSU bites the bullet -- 

or the $3-million buyout -- 

and fires Steve Addazio 



CSU athletic director Joe Parker  


If Colorado State coach Steve Addazio would have sat down at a microphone in a season-wrap news conference and convincingly said he would change his act, then he should have been brought back. That would have required eliminating the galling and insulting denial, and stepping away from implying that most of what was around him -- including his inherited players -- were disasters. It would have to have been a mea culpa, sincere enough to be credible.   


But that wasn't happening.


Keep reading here




November 27, 2021

Rantanen is at

center of attention 



Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 






November 24, 2021

No Nathan MacKinnon?

No problem for Avalanche.

Not yet ...  


Hockey Colorado Now


Read it here 




November 23, 2021

Highlands Ranch's 

and Ducks' Troy Terry  

emerging NHL star 



Hockey Colorado Now


Read it here 




November 22, 2021

Kraken add to

deep Northwest

hockey tradition  


Hockey Colorado Now


Read it here





November 19, 2021

Extension for Bednar

is the right thing to do  


Colorado Hockey Now 


Read it here 



November 18, 2021

Philipp Grubauer

off to a rocky

start with Kraken 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 




November 13, 2021

Jarome Iginla,

Hall of Famer ...

even with Avalanche 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here






November 11, 2021

Why are Avs

so vulnerable

to injuries?



Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here  




November 8, 2021

Fire Bednar now,

you say? Aw, 

give it a rest



Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here 






November 6, 2021

Buffaloes, Lewis 

are taking a turn

for the better 



Cole Becker drills the game-ending 43-yard field goal in the second overtime. 

I won't get carried away. It wasn't a college football game for the ages.


But what turned out to be Colorado's 37-34, two-overtime win over Oregon State at Folsom Field Saturday night not only was both entertaining and fun, it also stoked hopes that Karl Dorrell's sometimes bewildering and seemingly unshakable faith in freshman quarterback Brendon Lewis might finally be paying off. 


Keep reading here





November 3, 2021

J.T. Compher

steps up to 

Avs' top line 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 




November 1, 2021

Andrea Bocelli and

friends in Denver:

Bravo for all 


 Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets routed the Mavericks Friday night, Nathan MacKinnon and the Avalanche beat the Wild Saturday night, and Andrea Bocelli and friends hit all the right notes Sunday night, all at Ball Arena.


So over the course of three nights, three of the best in the world at what they do took to the floor, ice and stage in Denver. 



Even if you're not an opera aficianado -- and I'm not -- seeing and hearing the 63-year-old Italian-born tenor, with a supporting cast of musicians and artists that included his 9-year-old daugter, Virginia, singing "Hallelujah" with him, was remindful that some performers transcend their entertainment genre or niche.   


 Keep reading


OCTOBER, click here or scroll down

October 31 -- Erik Johnson's pent-up fist pump 

October 30 -- Happy Birthday, Cale Makar   

October 29 -- Avalanche swingman best darned NHL Oregonian

October 26 -- We might be seeing what the Avs are

October 25 -- NHL vendetta against Avs? Don't be silly

October 23 -- Yes, but ... The buck stops here, Coach Addazio 

October 18 -- Cale Makar profile for Mile High Sports Magazine

October 16 -- A banner night for Pierre Lacroix

October 15 -- RIP, Otis Armstrong

October 13 -- Avalanche impressive on Opening Night 

October 12 -- Joe Sakic's not sweating it  

October 12 -- Cale Makar is good to go 

October 11 -- Will THIS be the Avalanche's year? 

October 6 -- My Mile High Sports Magazine interview with Peter McNab

October 6 -- Will Darcy Kuemper need to be an ironman?

October 3 -- Where do the Avalanche rank in Colorado?

October 3 -- Buffs have many problems besides QB, but...

October 2 -- Uh, Gabe ... bad idea




October 31, 2021

Erik Johnson's post-goal

fist pump was pent-up

since March 2020 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 



October 30, 2021

Happy 23rd birthday,

Cale Makar: Still 

more upside


Colorado Hockey Now 

Read it here 




October 29, 2021

Avalanche swingman

is the best darned 

Oregonian in NHL 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here




October 26, 2021

Red (or burgundy) flag:

This might be what

the Avalanche is


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 




October 25, 2021

NHL vendetta against

Avalanche? Argue with

decisions, but don't be silly


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here




October 23, 2021

Rams' final chaos

inexcusable, and 

buck stops at top 



In the wake of Colorado State's crushing 26-24 loss at Utah State Friday night, most of the attention -- justfiably and understandably -- is focused on the Rams' unsuccessful field-goal attempt in the chaotic final seconds. If you're here, you know the circumstances and the narrative, so I'll just jump right in. 


Keep reading here






October 18, 2021

Mile High Sports

Magazine's Hockey 

and Hoops issue 


Read the digital issue here


Mile High Sports Magazine's annual Hockey and Hoops edition is out, I've got two major pieces it -- a cover profile of Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar and a funny and touching omnibus Q&A with Altitude TV Analyst Peter McNab, who is fighting cancer. The issue was issued with two different covers. The Nuggets' Michael Porter Jr. is on the other version.     


Also, here's the McNab interview as posted earlier on the MHS web site as a magazine preview.




October 16, 2021

Why all the fuss

over Pierre Lacroix?

Let me tell you... 


Pierre4ab.jpg Pierre2ab.jpg

Colorado Hockey Now   

Read it here 




October 15, 2021

RIP, Otis Armstong:

What a nice man ...

and a lot more 


Read it here







October 13, 2021

Avalanche stage 

an impressive

Opening Night 



Roughly 20 percent of the Opening Night crowd was red-clad Blackhawks fans  


Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here 




October 12, 2021

Joe Sakic isn't 

sweating absences

of coach, star 


Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here 





October 12, 2021

Wonder why Makar

didn't play in any

exhibition games? 



Colorado Hockey Now


Read it here





October 11, 2021

Will THIS be 

the Avalanche's  

Cup season? 



Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here 





October 6, 2021

My omnibus chat

with cancer fighter

Peter McNab



Mile High Sports Magazine 

Read it here 



October 6, 2021

Will Darcy Kuemper

need to be ironman

in Avalanche net?




Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here  


October 3, 2021

Where do Avs

rank on Denver

sports scene?


Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here 




October 3, 2021

Buffs have many

problems besides

quarterback but...

CUUSCTrojans.jpg CUUSCDorrell.jpg

BOULDER -- Among the many mysteries involving the Colorado Buffaloes that remain glaring after their 37-14 loss to Southern California Saturday is this: Why is Karl Dorrell so reluctant to pull quarterback Brendon Lewis? Why not at least take an extended look at his backup, fellow freshman Drew Carter? 


One possibility is that he wants Lewis to have a chance to play through this, to have the light suddenly come on after, say, an 8-yard completion to Brenden Rice in a second quarter -- any second quarter. 

But that's perilous.



Keep reading here




October 2, 2021

Uh, Gabe Landeskog ...

fighting isn't a good

idea, preseason or not 



Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here




September 30, 2021

With Johnson &

Johnson on D, Avs

need only one shot 


Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here





September 27, 2021

Nazem Kadri trying

to move on from

costly playoff hit  



Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here 




September 26, 2021 

Whoa. CSU Rams 

are becoming decent

after horrible start  


Steve Addazio and Trey McBride after the CSU loss at Iowa


Reacting to Colorado State's praiseworthy showing on the road against No. 5 Iowa Saturday doesn't have to revolve around the condescending distribution of orange slices.


And the 24-14 loss actually raises questions.


Keep reading here




September 24, 2021

Erik Johnson has

made it back ... but

in what role?  


Colorado Hockey Now

Read it here 




September 23, 2021

A line this good?

Coach Bednar, don't

mess it up 


Colorado Hockey Now 

Read it here




September 18, 2021

 In Boulder, mystifying


continues for Buffs


 BOULDER -- That Colorado Saturday lost to a decent Big Ten team, the Minnesota Gophers, wasn't shocking. 


This sure was: The Buffs appeared inept and mysteriously underachieving, and the 30-0 scores showing on the boards as the final seconds ticked off wasn't there because a cadre of Minnesota computer science majors hacked into the Folsom Field system.  


The Gophers were that dominant. 


The Buffs were that bad.


Keep reading here




September 11, 2021

Buffs let one

get away against

Texas Aggies 



Singing after the game with their fans at Empower Field at Mile High,

the Aggies were in a triumphant mood.


Read it here 



August 27, 2021

Where does all

this leave Calhoun

and AFA Falcons?



In the evolving college football landscape, the Air Force Academy Falcons rarely will have a chance to land a recruit who would have significant NIL -- Name, Image, Likeness -- income opportunities if he headed elsewhere. The Falcons rarely are in the running for legitimate Power Five prospects, and their Group of Five competitors -- including Colorado State and the rest of the Mountain West -- won't become known as programs with chances for big-time "outside" income.



Keep reading here







August 25, 2021


Addazio: "If I was

starting my career

again right now..." 



I asked Colorado State coach Steve Addazio two questions about the revolutionary changes in the college football landscape while I was among the group of scribes gathered around him as he ate a salad at the Blake Street Tavern Wednesday afternoon. (Or as Irv Brown often said, "Chris Fuselier's place...")


Keep reading here




August 10, 2021



Buffaloes DE

Terrance Lang 

continues progress   


Terrance Lang (54) against Washington in 2019. (Gary Kirchner / CU Athletics)


BOULDER -- Can't a guy change his mind?


Terrance Lang did.


After saying he planned to sign a national letter of intent with Southern California -- again nothing is a "commitment" until a signature confirms the plan -- Lang backed off.


Keep reading here




August 9, 2021

Chris Wilson settles

into coordinator

role with Buffaloes 



BOULDER -- After Colorado's 55-23 blowout loss to Texas in the Alamo Bowl last year, Buffaloes coach Karl Dorrell couldn't hide his anger.


In fact, he didn't even try.


CU had problems on both sides of the ball in San Antonio, but the defense particularly struggled.


It was the breaking point in the professional relationship between Dorrell and Tyson Summers, the holdover defensive coordinator Dorrell inherited from Mel Tucker. The Buffs allowed 31 points per game in the truncated season and that more than offset their startling success at getting off the field on third down. 


Keep reading here







August 8, 2021

There is no QB

race at CSU: It's

Todd Centeio's job




FORT COLLINS --  Steve Addazio's announcement going into spring ball that Todd Centeio was his starting quarterback wasn't a shocking choice.


Yet it was a bit surprising that the second-year CSU coach was so decisive, avoiding any rhetoric about an open competition with Centeio only the top name on the depth chart as the Rams started spring practices.


Keep reading here 









 August 6, 2021

 CSU's Dequan Jackson:

From the front page

of NY Times at 16

to Washington DC... 


Dequan Jackson (5) working with the "1s" on Friday at CSU's second pre-season practice. 


FORT COLLINS -- Dequan Jackson, the stalwart senior linebacker asserting leadership on the Colorado State practice fields Friday, five years ago was pictured and his story was told on the front page of The New York Times' print edition. That's the front page on August 31, 2016not an inside section front. 


Jackson was 16, about to begin his junior year at Jacksonville's Robert E. Lee High. He still was trying to cope with being charged with battery when he was 13, pleading guilty and getting assurances that if he behaved himself through a year of probation, the charge would be reduced to a misdemeanor.

In short, he did behave ... and it wasn't reduced. And that was just part of it.


The Times headline provided a hint of the travesty that journalist Erik Eckholm documented in his story:


Court Costs Entrap Nonwhite, Poor

Juvenile Offenders    


Keep reading here 




August 5, 2021


Level of normalcy

for Buffaloes is

almost normal  


Jarek Broussard and Nate Landman after the Buffaloes' Thursday practice. 


BOULDER -- It's not yet "normalcy," but it's getting there. 


After CU's first pre-season practice Thursday, coach Karl Dorrell (left), running back Jarek Broussard and linebacker Nate Landman each had a turn at a mini-podium and microphone set up outside the practice-field gate down the hill from Folsom Field on the north end of campus. 


Face to face.

No Zoom.


Keep reading here




NOTE: I'm planning to write here sporadically at most from mid-June to August as I immerse myself in other projects. Stay tuned. 

JUNE, click here or scroll down.

June 30 -- RIP, Bob Newland 

June 13 -- Give Avs and Nuggets credit as NBA/NHL tandem    


As a contributing writer for Mile High Sports Magazine, I pitched in with intermittent commentaries on the Avalanche for the MHS web site during the 2021 Colorado playoff run. They ran from May 18 to June 11, among other offerings, and are linked below in reverse chronological order -- for the two rounds the Avs lasted in the postseason.  


June 11 -- The Stanley Cup got away ... again

June 9 -- Can the Avalanche do it again?

June 7 -- Avalanche fans: DON'T PANIC! At least not yet 

June 6 -- Pierre Lacroix celebration of life 

June 6 -- Here's Joe Sakic's explanation of Cup handoff to Bourque

June 2 -- My story on The International in Mile High Sports Magazine  

June 1 -- Reaves, Bertuzzi and NHL's Codified shenanigans



June 30, 2021

RIP, Bob Newland:

We've lost a great 

Duck and loyal friend



Sad news: Former Ducks and Saints wide receiver Bob Newland, one of the most loyal men I've ever met, passed away this morning in Eugene after a long illness. He was 72. He was loyal to his family first and foremost, but also to my father -- his college coach -- and his teammates, and even to me.  


Keep reading here






June 13

Disappointing? Yes. 

But give Avs & Nuggets

credit as a tandem 


 I'm not making excuses for anyone, but I'm also not here with a lame and fill-in-the-blanks diatribe from the post-series reaction template.


Giving credit where credit is due is not gulping Kool-Aid.


Read it here 




June 11, 2021

Avs good enough

for epitaph to be:

they let Cup get away  



On the Mile High Sports web site 


Read it here 




June 9, 2021

Avalanche did it

once. Can Colorado

do it again?


On the Mile High Sports site  


Read it here 






June 7, 2021

Avalanche fans: There's 

no reason to panic.

At least not yet



On the Mile High Sports site

Read it here  




June 6, 2021

Pierre Lacroix

Celebration of Life

at Hilton Inverness 



On Sunday afternoon, Colorado's hockey gliterati -- and more -- gathered at the Hilton Inverness to salute former Avalanche general manager Pierre Lacroix with a Celebration of Life. 


It wasn't really a "media event."


I was honored to be among three or four non-Altitude media members present and it was fun to see so many faces from the Avalanche past and present, plus the Colorado hockey community, and to say hello to many.  


Keep reading here  




June 6, 2021

Here's Joe Sakic's

explanation of Cup

handoff to Bourque


John Leyba's iconic shot of Ray Bourque raising the Stanley Cup ... finally. 


As we approach Wednesday's 20th anniversary of the Avalanche's win over the Devils in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, I thought I'd reprise a portion my omnibus cover story interview with Joe Sakic from Mile High Sports Magazine's 200th issue last December.


In this, Sakic responds to my questions about his much-discussed and much-remembered handoff of the Stanley Cup to Ray Bourque:


Keep reading here   






June 2, 2021

Can you believe it?

The International

died 15 years ago  


My retrospective on The (Late, Great) International golf tournament is in the June issue of Mile High Sports Magazine. The annual Golf Issue is on newsstands now, its delivery to subscribers is imminent, and the digital version has been posted here





June 1, 2021

Reaves, Bertuzzi

and Codified late-game

NHL shenanigans 


On the Mile High Sports site


Read it here 



May 24, 2021

Avalanche fans, 

make room on 

the bandwagon 


On the Mile High Sports site


Read it here  




May 20, 2021


tandem on playoff

display in Denver 




On the Mile High Sports site


Read it here








May 18, 2021

Philipp Grubauer 

and the Avalanche

goaltending legacy


GrubauerMileHigh1.jpg Grub1.jpg


On Mile High Sports site


Read it here 




 May 2, 2021


Warren Jackson has

a shot -- a real shot --

with the Broncos 






Colorado State wide receiver Warren Jackson opted out of what turned out to be the Rams' abbreviated and troubled 2020 season to prepare for the draft, but -- surprisingly -- he went unclaimed over the three days.


The Broncos have signed the 6-foot-6 wideout from the Los Angeles area as a free agent, and I'll go on record here as saying he'll make the 2021 opening-season roster.




So the guys in the booth can say after every catch that he was an undrafted free agent who played his college football just up the road in Fort Collins. 


Keep reading here








May 1, 2021

My first Avs game in ...

ages. FYI, your cash 

is no good here.   



For a combination of reasons tied to COVID-19, I hadn't attended an Avalanche game in person for more than a year until I showed up at Ball Arena for the Colorado's back-to-back wins over the San Jose Sharks Friday and Saturday.   


The first month of the fans' return to the building -- albeit spread out through the entire seating area and with a cap at 22 percent of capacity -- is over. 


Read it here 





April 26, 2021

At Bridich exit, knock

Rockies for many things,

but "cheap" is myth


In better days ... at the 2019 home opener.  


Read it here 




April 21, 2021

Two years after book publication,

Frank DeAngelis update

on "Gun Rights ... and Wrongs"



Read it here 



And this adapted excerpt from Patrick Ireland's book project ran on ESPN.com in 2009 





April 19, 2021


22 years later:

Not much has changed ...

except for the worse



Take a look at that banner across the bottom of the screen on MSNBC the other day.


Look familiar?


Of course it does. 


Keep reading here 






April 9, 2021

Supreme Court packing

was a bad idea then ...

and is a bad idea now


As was foreshadowed during the 2020 presidential campaign, President Joe Biden has ordered formation of a commission to study for 180 days the viability of expanding the U.S. Supreme Court.


I'm against the notion itself, and also oppose using it as an issue on the checklist to validate anyone's "sensitive' and "progressive" bona fides.  


Keep reading 






April 7, 2021


Georgia, Colorado

voting laws alike?

Uh ... no. 



On Tuesday, Colorado Governor Jared Polis made the media circuit, discussing Major League Baseball's announcement that the All-Star Game will be played at Coors Field.  


I saw Polis with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, left, and MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell, right.


The governor quickly answered the questions aboout the unfortunate attempts to equate Colorado's existing voting laws with the new Georgia legislation. Then he tried to lighten up the conversation, talking baseball. I thought he was going to bring up WAR, RISP, WHIP and what the word "rake" means, and perhaps mention that he hopes peanuts, Cracker Jack and sunflower seeds will be allowed at Coors Field by the time the All-Stars gather in Denver. He said even the humorless Mitch McConnell would be welcome.


Keep reading here




April 2, 2021

Blues put a speed

bump in Bednar's 

path to NHL coaching 


 After the Colorado Avalanche hired Jared Bednar to succeed Patrick Roy in the franchise's chaotic Summer of 2016, I sat down with him for a long interview during training camp, called and spoke with others, and wrote an extensive profile that -- and I'll brag here -- I believe still is the definitive piece on him here.


Keep reading here




April 1, 2021

What's the outlook

for crowds at CU, CSU

in 2021 football? 


Read it here



MARCH, click or scroll down

March 31 -- Where's Broussard's knee brace?

March 24 -- Sadly, it has come up again: No Notoriety 

March 22 -- What has changed in 22 years? Nothing really

March 13 -- RIP, Marvelous Marvin Hagler

March 12 -- Where will the NHL fit under new ESPN/ABC deal?

March 11 -- On subtitles ... and titles that got away

March 2 -- Whizzer White and Buffs hit NY for first NIT 



March 31, 2021

Where's Broussard's

brace? In the trunk, 

with Linus' blanket 


Perhaps Jarek Broussard had taken enough friendly teasing from his coach, Karl Dorrell.


Maybe he'd heard enough musing about if he could average 163 yards rushing in five regular-season games wearing a semi-cumbersome brace on his troublesome left knee, what could he have done without it?  


Keep reading here




March 24, 2021

Sadly, it has come

up again: Don't give 

killers fame they seek  



Read it here 




March 22, 2021

One more time.

Tell me what really

has changed. Nothing.  



Read it here






March 13, 2021

RIP, Marvin Hagler:

You were Marvelous 


Playing Piano in a Brothel excerpt:

"Leonard vs. Hearns vs. Hagler" 





March 12, 2021


Where will the NHL fit

under the 7-year deal,

return to EPSN?



The announcement this week that the NHL is returning to ESPN, with broadcasts on several platforms under the terms of a seven-year contract, wasn't a shock.


It also recognizes the evolving marketplace, with cord-cutting, streaming and more individual choice about what to get and not get. To to assess it under conventional terms that are now out of date would be misguided. I get all that.


And I get that as long as broadcasts of NHL games are easily obtained from an ESPN/ABC platform -- regardless of which one -- that's the most important detail.


Keep reading here 






March 11, 2021

On  book subtitles ... and titles

that got away: Tin Soldiers, 

Leni and Glenn, Elway Effect ...





 As I  prepared to begin dropping in snippets from March 1939: Before the Madness as Facebook posts on the corresponding days the rest of the month, I was reminded of this: One frustration for me as an author has been that my book subtitles often have been overlooked or misunderstood. That's not whining. For the most part, I chose them or wholeheartedly agreed they appropriately augmented the titles.  

Keep reading here




March 2, 2021

Buffs' Whizzer White 

is the marquee draw

in NY at first NIT 


Whizzer White is in middle: Did you know he was a hoops star, too? 



Read it here




FEBRUARY, click or scroll down

February 27--Should a return to Coors Field be a guilt trip?

February 25 -- Addazio on Meyer's move to NFL

February 21 -- On the shore of Lake Tahoe...

February 19 -- NHL needs a (retro-) uniform policy on franchise hIstories

February 15 -- Officiating in a pandemic (scroll down)

February 14 -- Mission accomplished: Trump guilty in court of public opinion. But is that enough?

February 8 -- On Ralph Backstrom: What a (hockey) life




February 27, 2021

Rockies will allow fans.

Should an excursion to

the park be a guilt trip? 


Well, we know Nolan Arenado won't be back at Coors Field ... except when he's with the Cardinals.



Read it here



February 25, 2021

CSU's Addazio on

Urban Meyer's move

to NFL, Jaguars


Urban Meyer and Steve Addazio on the Florida Gators' sideline. Who's that No. 15

in the background? (Gainesville Sun) 


Read it here 



February 21, 2021
 This was nowhere near as much
of a disaster waiting to happen
as Avs' AFA appearance in '20 
The NHL is taking some heat for what happened Saturday, with the Avalanche-Golden Knights outdoor game on the shore of Lake Tahoe shutting down after one afternoon period in the sunlight -- and then finishing up late Saturday night.

Some of it is misguided.  

February 19, 2021

NHL needs to try on

a uniform policy for

franchise histories


The Avalanche will wear its reverse-retro jerseys Saturday against Vegas in the outddoor game alongside Lake Tahoe, on the outdoor rink built on the Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course.


The wardrobe gambit -- part of an NHL-wide marketing tool involving all 31 teams -- salutes the franchise's days as the Quebec Nordiques, one of four World Hockey Association franchises absorbed by the NHL for the 1979-80 season. 

One of their NHL opponents was ... the Colorado Rockies.

What about them?


Keep reading here 





February 15, 2021

My Mile High Sports

Magazine story on 

officiating in pandemic




After writing about Joe Sakic and Nikola Jokic in the previous two editions, my story in February's annual Mile High Sports preps issue is a look at veteran multi-sport officials: How did the shutdown effect them? How is it now that high school sports haltingly have started again?  


The issue is available at MHS' distribution outlets on the Front Range, and I'll post the link to the digital edition when it's available. 


That's Northglenn High grad Lauren "Big Red" Gardner, now a studio host for the NHL Network and MLB Network, on the cover.     


February 14, 2021

Mission accomplished:

Trump guilty in court

of public opinion


(. . . but is that enough?) 


 Read it here






February 8, 2021

Saluting Ralph Backstrom: 

From 6 NHL championships as Hab,

to founding Colorado Eagles 


                                                                                                                               Colorado Eagles 

It has been a tough couple of months for the Colorado hockey community. 


Avalanche godfather Pierre Lacroix died Dec. 13.


USA Hockey icon Art Berglund, a long-time Colorado Springs resident, died Dec. 19.


Then Sunday came the awful news about Ralph Backstrom's death. 


 Keep reading here




JANUARY, click or scroll down

January 31 -- EXCLUSIVE: Rockies considering these Arenado successors  

January 29 -- Arenado deal? Not an Onion parody, but still a joke

January 28 -- Denny Dressman's Game 163

January 27 -- Andre Burakovsky and secondary scoring 

January 24 -- Honoring Larry King with a 3-dots column

January 22 -- Bobby Brink returns to DU with WJC gold

January 19 -- Self-righteous anti-lottery crowd ... lighten up!

January 16 -- For heaven's sake, leave the top line together

January 15 --Addressing the Pac-12 image issue 

January 14 -- Is there still a home-ice advantage?

January 12 -- Win the Cup or feel shame?

January 10 -- We can't let 45 -- or them -- get away with it

January 8 -- My Mile High Sports Magazine story on Nikola Jokic

January 7 -- Tommy Lasorda and the Summer of '70

January 3 -- Let's hope a parade is possible 

January 2  -- Salute to Floyd Little 



January 31, 2021

Rockies considering

these 3B as possible 

Arenado successors


Read it here 



January 29, 2021

Arenado trade?

It's not an Onion parody,

but it is a complete joke  



Read it here 

January 28, 2021

Denny Dressman's Game  163:

What's first thing you remember

about Rocktober? Exactly! 


Former Rocky Mountain News editor and senior executive Denny Dressman long has been a respected voice and leader in Colorado's journalism and literary communities. 


So his terrific book, Game 163, is no surprise. 


Keep reading here




January 27, 2021

Andre Burakovsky:

Secondary scoring?

It's his job, after all  


The Avalanche's official roster lists players born in nine different nations -- Canada, United States, France, Austria, Czech Republic, Russia, Finland, Sweden and Germany.


There's a catch involving left wing Andre Burakovsky.


Keep reading here 





January 24, 2021

Honoring ... the great

Larry King ... with a

three-dots ... column


In honor of the great Larry King, with respect and admiration, here's my own Larry King-style column. If it was the right day, his column was the first thing I read in the USA Today dropped outside my door on the road. Marriott Points, breakfast buffet, Larry King and a mint on the pillow. It didn't get any better than that.  


Keep reading here 



January 21, 2021

Bobby Brink returns

to DU with World Juniors

gold medal to show 



 Bobby Brink (DU Photo)
Bobby Brink was on the ice at the Rogers Center in Edmonton, anxiously waiting for the clock to reach all zeroes.

"I kind of watched the last few seconds," the University of Denver sophomore winger said on the phone Friday. "I was just so excited. I made sure to throw my stick and gloves and helmet as high as I could in the air and jumped into the pile."

January 19, 2021

Hey, self-righteous

anti-lottery crowd ...



The Mega Millions jackpot is up to $850 million.


The Powerball jackpot is up to $730 million.


The Colorado Lotto jackpot is up to $2.6 million.


Muse about any of that and the automatic, kneejerk, lamely repetitive and predictable reaction from many is:


Keep reading here 




January 16, 2021

For heaven's sake, stop

(fooling) around with 

Avalanche top line 


Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen post-game. They were not asked about

the reuniting of the top line and whether they would prefer to leave it alone.  



This isn't going to be long, because what I have to say is quite simple. 

Avalanche coach Jared Bednar should stop (fooling) around with his top line.


Keep reading here




January 15, 2021

Upbeat Dorrell ready to

do his part to address

Pac-12 image issue  


 "I'm thinking, Terry."


As the Colorado Buffaloes move on from their surprising 4-2 season  -- yes, it still was surpising and praiseworthy despite the two consecutive losses to close it out -- one of the major challenges is clear.


Karl Dorrell and his staff will have to sell not just their program, campus and culture. 


They'll have to credibly sell the Pac-12 itself to recruits and anyone else involved in creating or buying into the league's image. Yes, that includes difference-maker prospects also seriously considering programs from other Power 5 leagues. The Scenic overlook on US 36 -- that first look (down) at Boulder -- can only go so far.    


Keep reading here 




January 14, 2021

So when I asked Avs

if still a home-ice

advantage, they said... 


Jared Bednar                                                  Devon Toews


 Matt Calvert                                                  Tyson Jost                                  


No fans. Artificial crowd noise. Music so loud -- or at least seemingly so loud in the near-empty Ball Arena -- the players' mothers should have been banging on their doors, telling them to TURN THAT DOWN! 


Keep reading here



January 12, 2021

What Joe Sakic said when asked

if this team has reached Cup or Bust  ...

and has it really been 25 years? 


 Mile High Sports Magazine 


Does the Avalanche have to win the Stanley Cup ... or feel shame?


Keep reading here 





January 10, 2021

Impeachment: We can't

let him -- or his enablers --

get away with it


Read it here




January 10, 2021

My Mile High Sports

Magazine story on 

Nuggets' Nikola Jokic



Jamal Murray was Mile High Sports Magazine's Sportsperson of the year for 2020, succeeding 2019 winner Nathan MacKinnon. Nikola Jokic was the choice for Pro Athlete of the Year. My story on Jokic is in the January 2021 issue. Here's the digital edition    



January 8, 2021

Tommy Lasorda and 

the Summer of '70



Tommy Lasorda, Bobby Valentine, Steve Garvey, Bill Buckner, Tommy Hutton, Bill O'Brien.


After his Thursday death, memories of Tommy Lasorda are flooding in from the baseball world. 


I'm not going to try to compete with the anecdotes about his long and colorful tenure as the Dodgers' manager, or detail his life and career as if I'm on the Obit Desk.


This goes back to having crossed paths with him at a couple of junctures.


In the Summer of '70, I was a kid working for the Pacific Coast League Eugene Emeralds. Lasorda was the Spokane Indians' fiery manager.


Thirty years later as a journalist, I was his sole fellow passenger on a corporate jet flight from San Francisco to Denver and spent the two hours chatting with -- "interviewing" isn't the right word -- Lasorda for what turned out to be two Denver Post columns in June 2000.


If you want to get ahead of the story, here are those columns. (Note how primitive newspaper web sites could look in the early years after Al Gore invented the Internet.) 


Part One


Part Two


Now back to the Summer of '70. 


Keep reading here





January 3, 2021

Hoping a full Cup

parade -- is possible. Might

as well be in Denver, right?  


Jared Bednar raising the Kelly Cup as a player with the South Carolina Stingrays

and the Calder Cup as coach of the Lake Erie Monsters 


I'm probably going to keep saying this until I get it right.


The Avalanche will win the Stanley Cup this season.


The issue is: Can there be a parade?


Keep reading here





January 2, 2021

Take your pick:

Floyd Little made --

or saved -- the

Denver Broncos    



Floyd Little made the Broncos. And I'm not talking about cracking the roster. 


Keep reading here