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Morning Java: Do-it-yourself LaMarr, Letang, Dukes

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Morning, Lunatics …

>> The Tuesday do-it-yourself blog invites all to write your own mini-column on any ONE of the following three topics:

1. Weighing the investment the Steelers have made in LaMarr Woodley and the fact that he’d cost even more in 2014 if released, who would you play on the left side Thursday night, Woodley or Jason Worilds?

2. Kris Letang recently signed his own monster contract, and already he’s been taken off the top power play. Was the extension a mistake?

3. Pitt and Duquesne tip off in the annual City Game on Saturday, and the Dukes for the billionth time will be an underwhelming underdog? Can anything realistically revive hoops on the Bluff?

To repeat the rules: Choose only ONE topic. And limit all entries to 150 words.

The best ones in each category will go up on the main portion of the blog tomorrow. If you want your full name credited, please include it with the entry.

>> Speaking of Duquesne, I’m happy to share here that Jim Ferry will be the very special guest on my TribLIVE Radio show tomorrow at 2 p.m.

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>> Nothing the Penguins try against the Bruins seems to work. Not even when Sidney Crosby ties it with 0.3 seconds left. Josh Yohe reports from Boston.

I know this is a broken record, and I don’t care: This team’s third line is a farce, and that’s even within the context of Brandon Sutter being a reasonably competent player. Soft AHL guys.

Here’s our full Penguins coverage.

Here’s Bruins news from the Boston Globe.

Here are official game highlights from NHL.com.

>> Ben Roethlisberger says players hate Thursday games, by Alan Robinson.

The weekly Steelers Film Session focuses on how to keep Ben clean, by Mark Kaboly.

Here’s our full Steelers coverage.

Here’s Ravens news from the Baltimore Sun.

Here are official game highlights from NFL.com.

And here’s a fun talk I had yesterday with TribLIVE Radio’s Ken Laird and Guy Junker about Steelers-Ravens …

>> Anyone complaining about Pitt’s out-of-conference schedule probably was placated at least a little by the Panthers’ rather thorough rout of Texas Tech last night. Kevin Gorman reports from Brooklyn.

All I’ll add from my channel-switching view of this one: If Durand Johnson could blossom into a legit outside shooting threat — and I mean consistent — that’s a difference maker.

>> Pitt’s Aaron Donald is piling up potential honors. Jerry DiPaola reports.

>> The Pirates and Padres trade minor-leaguers. Travis Sawchik reports.

>> By the way, for those who helped in paring down that list of 10 columns from 2013, this was the final call made by the editors — and yes, after reading your comments — for the cutdown to five:

Feb. 12: Wrestling isn’t down for count yet

March 21: Dixon has questions to answer

Oct. 2: Hey, baseball, can you hear us?

June 7: For Penguins, a stubborn failure

Sept. 29: Chaotic Steelers a bloody mess

If a cutdown is needed to three, the first three up there would be the choices.

Couple notations: I hated the baseball column, as I’ve mentioned, but that ranked at or near the top of most of your lists, and the editors agreed. So that’s that. The Sid-Mario column that a lot of people liked was shot down — rightly — because I didn’t gather enough outside opinion. (Started it late on a Friday night for a Sunday paper, but judges don’t care.) The Paternos column, which I had as my own favorite, was rejected, candidly, because the people who read it almost surely will be sick of the topic. And all the other happy baseball pieces were left out for the simple reason that the sentiment was basically expressed in the one above.

Anyway, I’ll thank everyone again and promise not to bring it up again. This really, really helps, as you can see from the huge difference in what I gave you and how it ended up.

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Author: Dejan Kovacevic

Dejan Kovacevic, a lifelong Pittsburgher, is an award-winning sports columnist for Trib Total Media covering the Steelers, Penguins, Pirates, Pitt and, recently, his fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He also appears on WPXI-TV's 'Subway Final Word’ and hosts a weekly show on TribLIVE Radio. For 2011, he was named one of the country's top four columnists by the AP Sports Editors. For 2012, he was named one of the country's top three columnists by the National Headliners. For 2013, he was named the state's top columnist by the Keystone Press Awards and top columnist in Western Pennsylvania by the Golden Quills.

 
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