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This Just In: Week 22 Edition

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In the world of professional sports, we see no shortage of well-written, well-researched articles that delve into the stories surrounding our favourite teams. The unfortunate side effect? Fake stories go begging, unnoticed and forgotten. In an attempt to reverse this shocking trend, Eighty Six Forever is proud to present a selection of stories that are completely, totally, absolutely false. Enjoy.

Kenny Miller, as envisaged in the mind of Ally McCoist.
Kenny Miller, as envisaged in the mind of Ally McCoist.
Laurence Griffiths

Rogers Communications to Pilot New Sports-Themed Crime Drama?

After months of hiding out in a dumpster, our crack Eighty Six Forever sleuthing team has acquired this intriguing bit of correspondence between the higher-ups at Sportsnet and Citytv Vancouver. I'll let the content speak for itself.

TO: Scott Moore, President of Broadcasting, Rogers Media
FROM: Sam Dynes, Director of In-House Productions, Rogers Media
RE: New Show For Fall Line-Up

Hey there, Scotty,

Remember at last year's staff retreat when we were talking about generating new content for Citytv to replace all that "reality TV" garbage? Ha, just kidding - of course we're not replacing America's Got Talent. That show draws in more suckers than an "Own The Maple Leafs" Ponzi scheme.

But seriously, we do need some fresh content since we sadly can't bank on Two And A Half Men re-runs for the next infinity years. Luckily, I just happened to stumble on what I think could be a real cross-promotion winner for us: a genre-busting procedural drama called Sports Crime. The boys over at Sportsnet out in Vancouver cooked this up after the Whitecaps-Galaxy game and after seeing the pilot, I'm already tingling with excitement. I've attached a page from the pilot script for you to look over.

Regards,
Sam D.

P.S. The Whitecaps and Galaxy are soccer teams in Major League Soccer (MLS). Look at that - I saved you a trip to Wikipedia!

~

[INTERIOR - SPORTS CRIME LAB]

[Investigators PAUL MACEWEN and CRAIG DOLAN are looking over a corpse laid out on an operating table. The body is that of a young man with bleached-blond curly hair.]

MACEWEN: So, this is our suspect?

DOLAN: This was our suspect, boss. Meet Jesse Lardess, formerly of the Los Angeles area. Multiple poaching convictions, some minor driving infractions - mostly speeding.

MACEWEN: And now he's dead.

DOLAN: Dead as a doornail.

MACEWEN: Like butter through a hot knife.

DOLAN: ...um, sure. The point is, Jesse fit the bill as our mystery sniper. Either he got what was coming to him or someone took him out before he could tell us what he knew.

MACEWEN: Thank goodness we found him before the seagulls did. With this body in good condition, we should be able to find out exactly what killed him. That should give us a lead as to who did it and, hopefully, who our mystery sniper is.

[Montage of: MACEWEN and DOLAN wheeling out a gargantuan machine loaded with a variety of instruments, tubes, screens, meters and flashing lights; the investigators combing over the body meticulously; and various stock footage shots of Vancouver. Finish with DOLAN proudly standing in front of the body with the machine beside him.]

DOLAN: Well, it took us weeks of analysis and hundreds of dedicated hours but I think we've cracked it: Mister Lardess was struck by a large, spherical object travelling at high velocity, causing a clear impact point here.

[DOLAN points to the top of the body's head.]

DOLAN: Blunt force trauma, clear and simple. I've even mapped out the trajectory on this screen here.

[MACEWEN turns to look at the screen. A large sphere passes by a 3-D model of a head.]

MACEWEN: It... doesn't look like it strikes him at all, Dolan.

DOLAN: Oh, no, it definitely strikes him. I'm absolutely sure of that. Right off the head.

MACEWEN: I'm pretty sure it misses him completely. Here, look at the screen - whiff, right past him.

DOLAN: You must be seeing something I'm not, boss. It clearly strikes that curl of hair - there! See? Right there!

MACEWEN: A hair.

DOLAN: Yes!

MACEWEN: A single hair.

DOLAN: Yes!

MACEWEN: So you're telling me Jesse Lardess was murdered by a large, spherical object glancing off a single hair on his head.

DOLAN: Ye- well, when you put it like that...

MACEWEN: That's the stupidest [expletive] thing I've ever heard.

DOLAN: Well-

MACEWEN: Since the object didn't kill him, this clearly means the assassin had an assistant.

DOLAN: Of course! An assistant...

[COMMERCIAL]

Miller's Scotland Call-Up Actually a Rangers Ploy

To say Kenny Miller has undergone a reputation renaissance with the Whitecaps this season would be putting it mildly. While his scoring numbers are still arguably pedestrian for a supposed Designated Player, his supporting work in all areas of the pitch have more than endeared him to his teammates and the Vancouver sports fan. In fact, one could plausibly make the case that this combination of offensive and defensive form are what earned Miller a call-up from Scotland for a friendly against historic rivals England.

(Then again, one could also plausibly make the case that a secret army of mantis-like alien invaders are hypnotizing Gordon Strachan; strangely enough, both cases are absolutely correct. But I digress.)

Sadly, the truth of Miller's call-up is far less congratulatory and far more sinister. Reports are surfacing from the Daily Mail that the supposed "national team camp" Miller is set to join is actually a Rangers FC pre-season training camp in disguise. Hidden cameras and microphones around Hampden Park originally planted by English spies to peek in on Scotland's pre-match preparations revealed not Scotland manager Gordon Strachan but Rangers manager Ally McCoist on the pitch, running training drills and organizing a massive pipes-and-drums receiving line under an enormous "WELCOME HOME KENNY" banner.

When informed of this development, Whitecaps manager Martin Rennie promptly re-signed Miller to a contract extension, denying McCoist the chance to sign Miller until mid-2014. The resulting tirade of profanity by McCoist could be heard clear as day all the way across the Firth of Clyde.

MLS And Topps Release 2013 Trading Cards; Outrage Ensues

Finally, This Just In would like to deviate from our standard operating procedure of bringing you the best fake news we can find for just a moment. For once, ladies and gentlemen, we're about to tell you something that might actually be true.

For the 2013 season, the MLS' trading card supplier was switched from Upper Deck to Topps, which I'm sure is an important thing if you're one of those grown people who still feel trading cards are a valuable investment. (Hint: nope.) Having just disparaged trading cards and people who trade and/or collect them in my previous sentence, I will now proceed to be unreasonably outraged about them. The following Whitecaps received cards: Alain Rochat (#46), Joe Cannon (#47), Jay DeMerit (#48), Darren Mattocks (#63), Andy O'Brien (#96), Jun Marques Davidson (#97), Daigo Kobayashi (#146), Kenny Miller (#147), Gershon Koffie (#196) and Young-Pyo Lee (#197).

Notice anyone missing from that list? Oh, that's right, only the 'Caps leading scorer, Camilo Sanvezzo.

I have to wonder what sort of criteria were being used to pick the players for inclusion in this edition of trading cards, not to mention what the actual turnaround time is for a full production run - y'know, just in case little errors pop up. Like, for example, one of those players no longer being a Whitecap (Rochat). Oh, and one of those players has been injured since the season opener (DeMerit). Honestly, I have to wonder if someone just threw darts at the team roster in February and went "Meh, good enough." That is literally the only way Jun Marques Davidson gets a card and Nigel Reo-Coker doesn't - no disrespect to Davidson, but there are players higher up the marquee than Mr. I-Nearly-Broke-The-Ankle-Of-Pablo-Mastroeni that deserved whatever honour being on a trading card provides.

Hey, speaking of players who commit vomit-hurling-horrible tackles, guess who did get a card? Brian Mullan. Yes, that Brian Mullan. Brian "I Snapped Steve Zakuani's Leg Like A Slim Jim" Mullan gets a trading card. Huzzah for reconciliation, I guess? Oh, and guess who else got a card? Only the cog of Montreal Impact's defensive line and former Whitecap do-something-please-anything, Jeb Brovsky. Yup. Really, at this point, I just don't know what to think.

Oh, wait; yes, I do. Trading cards are stupid. Let us never speak of them again.

~

Rituro is a freelance nerd, sports fan and avid gamer. Feel free to throw a tweet his way and follow @ThatRituroGuy.