The Morning Percolator: Puck drops and tip-offs

Here at the Daily Jolt, we prefer our coffee on the stove top and not from the electric drip machine. We're just old-school that way. Here's what's happening this Friday morning...

…Wide receiver Brandon Marshall held an introductory press conference on Thursday to discuss being traded to the Miami Dolphins and returning to play in his native Florida. The wide receiver, who was greeted with a nice $47.5 million contract extension upon landing in South Beach, certainly seemed ecstatic about receiving “a clean slate” with the Dolphins. Say what you want about Marshall, but he certainly does have a knack for coming off as a good guy. By the way Brandon, you said it’s an “amazing feeling” to be back home? I’m sure it really is an amazing feeling to get $24 million in guaranteed money, too. In terms of what Marshall could bring to the field at Sun Life Stadium on Sundays, the NFP’s Matt Bowen looked at how having a go-to wideout will elevate quarterback Chad Henne’s play next season. Don’t look now, Patriots fans, but the Dolphins and Jets legitimately could be considered the top two teams in the AFC East. I’ll never discount a team coached by Bill Belichick, but the overall team depth isn’t what it used to be in New England. Heck, the overall star power isn’t what it used to be at Gillette Stadium. If the Bills have a good draft next week and another one in 2011, this division could set up to be the most intriguing in the league for years to come.

…If there’s any truth to these latest revelations in the Ben Roethlisberger drama, let’s hope that commissioner Roger Goodell doesn’t just give Big Ben a slap on the wrist. I’ll withhold my opinions on the quarterback from this forum for now, but let’s just say it’d be a shame if there is any truth to this story and all is forgotten come September after a one- or two-game suspension. I think we all have a pretty good idea on how this most likely played out behind the scenes and why the young accuser no longer wanted her attorney to prosecute. It shouldn’t surprise any of us if that was the case. But despite him not being charged, I would have a hard time being able to root for Roethlisberger on my football team.

The Stanley Cup Playoffs, also known as the greatest postseason in sports, are underway, and I will be enjoying Game 1 of the series between my beloved Chicago Blackhawks and the Nashville Predators at the local tavern this evening. The one downside to the Hawks being primed to make a deep run in the postseason is dealing with bandwagon jumpers — fans that came aboard once new owner Rocky Wirtz and president John McDonough started to right the ship a few years ago. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to see kids and young people filling the stands at the United Center every night. And it’s awesome to see hockey get the local exposure that it once received throughout the 60’s and 70’s. But there’s just something that irks me about walking into a sports bar and seeing a frat boy wearing a Patrick Kane shirt that he bought less than a month ago. Even with that said, enjoy the run Chicago. Hope you’re sporting the playoff beard. I know I am. It makes me feel creepy. Stanley Cup Finals prediction: Capitals over Sharks in 6.

…Not as great as the NHL playoffs, but still a viable entertainment option, the NBA playoffs will tip off on Saturday with a nice slate of action — highlighted, of course, by the Bulls and my boy Jo Noah taking on the Cavs and Queen James. Sorry, Cleveland, I am a Chicagoan. I will be at the UC for Game 3 on Thursday night, where I’m sure Mo Williams will break my heart and hit a game-winning three-pointer with 1.6 seconds remaining. And even though he will be let go after the series — before he could even clean out his office — I always look forward to seeing a Vinny Del Negro press conference after a loss. I know I’m going to regret this pick, but I like to change it up a bit. NBA Finals prediction: Mavs over Magic in 7.

…You remember Tila Tequila from her spat with Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman? Well, I remember her from other things, but nonetheless the professional, never-really-fully-clothed Tweeter told Fox News that she can’t wait to launch her new gossip blog,, because it “will dethrone Perez Hilton.” That’s about all I got on this story. I just wanted to file it so I could give Jolt readers the chance to enjoy her picture on this beautiful Friday.

…Hip-hop icon Snoop Dogg is the latest celebrity to voice his support for Tiger Woods, joining actor Jim Carrey, who found himself in hot water for some uncomfortable tweets he recently published to the world. Snoop knows what it’s like to be in trouble for rampant infidelity, previously admitting to cheating on wife Shante Taylor. The musical genius told Larry King recently, “You know, that's a proximal issue with [Tiger] and his wife. And I feel like it's been blown out of proportion because he was looked at as somebody who was perfect. But at the same time, nobody is perfect and everybody makes mistakes. So let's let him get his life back with his wife and move on.” Okay, Snoop, you lost me when you said the word “proximal.” Now that is some deep stuff.

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