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Just like the olden days

From wire reports The Spokesman-Review

Russia and China are joining forces in a bid to dethrone the United States as the top medal winner at the Summer Olympics.

“To beat America we need to unite our efforts and knowledge … to achieve better results in swimming and track and field, where they (the Americans) are strong,” Russian Olympic Committee chief Leonid Tyagachev told The Associated Press.

The national Olympic committees of both countries reached an agreement to help each other surpass the Americans’ medal count at the 2008 Beijing Games.

The United States led the standings at last year’s Athens Olympics with 35 golds and an overall tally of 103. China was second with 32 golds and 63 medals total while Russia had 27 and 92.

Tyagachev said the two countries could cooperate in training athletes and sharing advances in sports equipment and medical care. Russian media quoted Tyagachev as saying the home crowd would support Russian competitors in events where there was no Chinese challenge.

Making some noise

Defending champion Maria Sharapova needed only one match at Wimbledon this year to surpass her personal grunting record, the Sun of London reported, crediting her with a 101.2-decibel grunt.

Added Dwight Perry of The Seattle Times: “In fact, say those in the know, Sharapova is probably just a few voice lessons away from becoming the first player in tennis history who can grunt her own weight.”

Not to his taste

David Letterman, on the planned $800 million Yankee Stadium: “They say it will have the look and feel as though it has been around since the 1920s – you know, just like the hot dogs.”

Also from Letterman, on the cost of the stadium: “For $800 million, the Yankees could buy a weak-hitting first baseman.”

UnPatriotic

Russian President Vladimir Putin walked off with New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft’s diamond-encrusted 2005 Super Bowl ring during a recent meeting with U.S. business executives.

But not to worry: Kraft said the ring was a gift to Putin, presented out of “respect and admiration.”

Earlier, the Boston Globe had speculated that Kraft hadn’t meant to give away the ring.

Now that’s scary

In the movie “Bewitched,” when Nicole Kidman’s character finally confesses that she is a witch, Will Ferrell’s character, initially not believing her, responds, “Guess what? I’m a Clipper fan. I even bought courtside seats.”

Tough customers

Comedian Alex Kaseberg, on Mike Tyson quitting after the sixth round of his fight with Kevin McBride: “Tyson refused to come out for the seventh round even though five of his creditors were pushing him to go back out there.”

Making his point

Chi Chi Rodriguez, asked by Golf Digest magazine about the decision to ban carts on the Champions Tour: “If Franklin Roosevelt can run the country out of a wheelchair, we should be able to use a golf cart.”

Finals word

Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle was unimpressed with the recent NBA Finals. “It was like football without the forward pass, baseball without BALCO, curling without the brooms,” he wrote. “Ballet it wasn’t. But it’s hard to execute a pirouette when you’re wearing a tutu named Ben Wallace.”

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