Here's Volume 7 Of RA's Quarantine Mailbag

Hey RA,

Watched Misery today.  When James Caan got hobbled by sweet Kathy Bates, do you think ankle guards would’ve helped him? Seriously, where do you think that Caan movie ranks with all of his flicks? What do you think are his top five?  If this has been asked before, I fucking apologize.

Bill from Halifax

I love Jimmy Caan, one of cinema's true bad-asses. Like Andrew "Dice" Clay, he's beloved by Italian-Americans everywhere. Also like the Dice Man, he's Jewish. Many of his roles carry a surly swagger that most men dream of carrying. MISERY is a great film and Caan is excellent in it but it's not his best.

James Caan's Top 5 movies.

5. BRIAN'S SONG. AKA "the movie that managed to make American men cry in 1971". Based on the friendship between real-life Chicago Bears Brian Piccolo and Gale Sayers, this TV movie about an unlikely friendship was a huge hit and was actually given a theatrical run after airing on ABC. Plus, it's Lando Calrissian and Sonny Corleone. Do not confuse it with the inferior, unnecessary 2001 remake.

4. MISERY. Caan doesn't do the tough guy thing here but rather he plays a romance novelist who ends up an invalid prisoner to his "number one fan" after she saves his life. An incredible Kathy Bates won the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of the fanatical Annie Wilkes in this fun thriller based on the Stephen King novel.

3. THE GAMBLER. Fuck that trashy remake, watch this original about Caan's degenerate college professor who is more addicted to action than Portnoy. Anybody who's ever gone on an 0-13 cooler publically can relate to this movie. Not that I'd know.

2. THIEF. Michael Mann's debut is pretty much a masterpiece and that's due in part to Caan's performance. Not the hothead that Sonny was but he's still simmering just below the surface. I've sung this movie's praises more than I've sung "Happy Birthday" and with good reason. Also gave us this epic stare-off...

1. THE GODFATHER. Just an epic performance that should teach everyone to stop and count to 10 before flying off the handle. Sonny wasn't there for a long time just a good time. And he was hung like Khartoum. Unfortunately, he ended up like Khartoum. Earned Caan his Oscar nom for Supporting Actor. Early EZ-Pass proponent.

Hey RA,

Huge Chiclets fan and a fellow B’s fan. Do you think anyone is on the trading block or any of the front office/coaching staff in hot water if they come up short of the cup?



The front office and coaching staff isn't going anywhere even if the Bs lose in the first round (whenever it happens). That would be an overreaction to what would be the most unique season in league history and would be unfair as well. Don Sweeney's and Butch Cassidy's track records are pretty damn good lately so that a first-round KO after a three-game warm-up after a months-long layoff wouldn't put their jobs in jeopardy. 

If anybody is on the trading block, it won't be because they win or don't win the Stanley Cup. It will be because of salary cap management. Torey Krug has already said he'd re-sign here for less than he would fetch on the open market and the Bs should try to make that happen. So the $2.75M that John Moore is slated to make for the next three seasons after this one would be an obvious salary the Bs would try to unload in order to keep Krug here (hey, I didn't say Sweeney was perfect). Though Moore played in the last two games before the pause, he was a health bomb in the previous 10 so the Bs may prefer to direct that money to Krug rather than spend it on a bottom pair/#7 guy. Also a factor: whether or not Zdeno Chara ($2M) returns next season. To be clear, I haven't heard a goddman thing and I'm not advocating the Bs dump him. But it is the number that does jump out at you when looking at capfriendly and wondering how they can keep Krug.


Hey RA,

Are you a Wes Anderson guy, and if so, which Wes Anderson movie is your favorite?

Curtis, JP

I've been a huge Wes Anderson guy ever since RUSHMORE dropped (I'm not gonna be a fake hipster and pretend I saw BOTTLE ROCKET first). But my favorite of his is THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS, a weirdly perfect movie that also sent the template for future Andersonian universes that SNL brilliantly poked fun at a few years back. 

Wes Anderson movies ranked...










Here's some bonus footage of The Who stealing the show from the Rolling Stones at their own gig while ripping through "A Quick One (While He's Away)". Epic shit from The Who.

Hey RA love the pod, keep up the good stuff.

My question is about broadcasting and broadcasters. It came to me after listening to your episode with Joe Buck (one of my favourites). I grew up in Canada with only 4 channels on our TV, one of them was actually in French, because of that I only got to experience a handful of play-by-play/colour guys, Bob Cole, Chris Cuthbert, Jim Hughson and Gord Miller would be the standouts. I never got to experience many of the great American play-by-play/colour guys until YouTube and satellite became popular and affordable. Who are your favourite American Colour commentators? Could be from any sport and any era.



My all-time favorite guy in the booth is the late Fred Cusick (this is where I'd normally link my obit on him but the DevNest fucked that all up). He called the Bruins on TV-38 for the majority of my life and was incredible at it. His epic "shot...SCORE!" is burned into the brain of every 1970s and 1980s Bruins fan.


On a national level, I would donate to a GoFundMe to get Gary Thorne back into an NHL booth. As much as I love and appreciate Doc, I give the nod to Thorne. ESPN's late Tom Mees was also an excellent game-caller.

In non-hockey sports, Howard Cosell is probably the biggest legend in the game. His 'spats' with Ali are still fun to watch. Though he could be divisive, the man could add drama any MNF game. Marv Albert owned hoops for seemingly decades. And on the diamond, Vin Scully and Joe Garagiola were probably the best pair I can recall (I kinda punted baseball for a bit after they ripped off fans in '94 knowing full well they were going on strike).

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