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Balmy Michigan

SnowDETROIT -- Woke up early this morning to do a radio show back in South Florida, and instead of seeing sun out of my hotel room on the 58th floor, it's still dark.

And it's snowing.

Sure, not a lot of snow, but snow is snow pal. Now, here I sit, watching cartoons on a cold, snowy Saturday morning. Brings back a lot of childhood memories.

Of course, I grew up in Miami. But whatever. You have your childhood memories, I have mine.

-- Will update this site after the morning skates, which aren't that far off. Will see whats going on with David Booth, etc.

-- And again, tonight's game is not on local Florida TV, but it is on the Center Ice package and will be broadcast by the Wings' TV crew on FSN Detroit. People have been emailing me the past few weeks complaining about FSN's lack of coverage of this team, and how it seems every big game isn't on TV.

I think that's a bit of a stretch. Remember, the network only has a contract to cover 70 of the 82 games, so that's 12 games that's not televised. And, if the Panthers are in the playoff hunt, expect FSN to pick up games late and put them on Sunshine.

As far as tonight goes, FSN told the Panthers in no uncertain terms that they were not covering the game in Detroit. And it has nothing to do with the Red Wings. They were not going to cover any game on this particular Saturday night because it has a corporate partnership with the Florida High School Athletics Association and was going to televise the Class 6A football finals as it has done in the most recent past.

This was a business move on FSN's part, and they feel showing this game live does a number of things.

First, it's a community relations boost. It shows they care about youth sports in the state (whether they do or not. Truth is, it's a cheap thing to cover, and the only people complaining about high school football being on TV are the Panthers and their fans. And the Panthers aren't really complaining.) Second, by not switching it to Sun -- which is on just about every cable system in the state -- FSN can try to keep up the pressure on up-north cable systems to put their station on.

Remember, FSN Florida used to be SportsChannel, and is still regarded as the South Florida sports network. FSN is trying to change that, and to do so, they have put stuff like Orlando Magic and Gator basketball on to try and persuade folks up north to get it.

Good luck there.

So, it's nothing personal Panthers. Plus, the game's on Center Ice. If you don't get it, find a good sports bar and make it a night out. It is Saturday, after all. Places in Broward I know have the CI package include my buddies at Quarterdeck, the Schnellenberger Steakhouses and the Ale Houses. Think Gatsby's gets it too, but not sure.

-- And thanks to everyone for forwarding the Marcus Nilson quote about hockey being on Page 12 in The Miami Herald "after the high school basketball results.'' Obviously Marcus hasn't seen The Herald lately.  It's hockey central, baby!

Raiders -- Speaking of high schools, congratulations to George Smith and the St. Thomas Aquinas Raiders for winning the Class 5A state title last night. Raiders had lost in the past three championship games, some in excruciating ways. Those guys are feeling good today, can tell you that.

-- Got a tip from Happy Girl to go to Windsor and do some gambling while in Detroit. I'm not a gambling man, sorry. But I did go to the new MGM Grand here last night. I honestly could not believe I was still in downtown Detroit. You have blocks and blocks of abandoned buildings, then BOOM! A giant, luxury casino. And they're everywhere here. Good times playing video poker.

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