ORLANDO -- The PGA Merchandise Show, for the most part, is about companies trying to get attention for their products.
Some of those companies pull out all the stops.
Hollrock, a company which makes driving range products, has a girl in their booth that makes Jessica Simpson in the Dukes of Hazzard look like she's dressed for church.
Traffic grinds to a halt around the Hollrock area when she's standing there in her six-inch heels, cutoff shorts and shirt tied around her midriff.
"Like my wife says," drawled one 60-something Hollrock employee, "sex sells."
IzodG, the clothing company which last year had rocker Alice Cooper perform for its clients and staff, brought in the Black Crowes for a private show at The Hard Rock Cafe.
I don't know if there has been a more curious sight here than a bunch of tassled-loafered, khaki-wearing golf pros in button-down dress shirts trying to rock to the long-haired, denim-wearing, chain-smoking Crowes.
HEAR AND THERE: Speaking of things that are a curious match, an Associated Press story the other day said U.S. skier Bode Miller "loathes excessive media attention." Huh? If that's the case, maybe he shouldn't talk about skiing drunk or accuse Barry Bonds and Lance Armstrong of being drug cheats. Those kinds of things tend to attract excessive media attention ... Saw where the Ernst and Young Ice and Dice event featuring the Senators raised $200,000 in one night, to be distributed among various charities on both sides of the river. It represents one of the few occasions when a night of gambling at Lac Leamy results in everyone being a winner.
THE BUZZ: You knew this was going to happen: Tees remain an area that continue to draw a lot of interest from inventors here. Now there are the Nudie Tees. "These flesh-coloured beauties are made in durable plastic and are 3-inches tall," says the company's promo material. "Tee it up with a hot beauty!" Yeesh ... Martin Brodeur has signed a new deal with the New Jersey Devils and you have to wonder if he undervalued himself at about $5.5 million a year for the next few years ... It makes the deal the Habs signed with Jose Theodore ($5.5 million this year; $6 million next), look ridiculous, based on Theodore's play this season.
REVELATIONS: One golf company that bears watching is Heavy Putter, which we told you about for the first time last year at this time. An update: The company has attracted interest on the Tours and has been used by Nationwide Tour star Troy Matteson, who won the money title last year and is on the PGA Tour this season. He went from 110th in the putting stats to eighth using the Heavy Putter. The name explains it. The putter is about twice as heavy as a normal putter with weight under the grip to give the club balance. "The idea is to take the small muscles out of the stroke," said company president and CEO Steve Boccieri. A new manufacturing process has cut the club's price by about $70 US to $199 ... Marian Hossa doesn't fight much, but he can throw 'em. He filled in Oleg Tverdovsky of the Hurricanes after Tverdovsky abused him in front of the net the other night.
SPECULATIONS: Ran into veteran PGA Tour player Scott Hoch at the Show the other day. He's played only three times in the last 18 months after injuring his wrist. Doctors transplanted a tendon from under his left arm to the injured area on the top of his wrist. He's planning on being back in April and playing both the regular and Champions tours this year. The Champions Tour should be a licence for him to print money.
LOST IN TRANSLATION: "I love Hooters, but my wife doesn't like the idea of me being with them and I had to make a tough decision. The money was great, but my marriage is more important," said John Daly of his lost sponsorship. Translation: The wife didn't think he was there for the wings.
LET ME SAY THIS ABOUT THAT: Habs GM Bob Gainey fired coach Claude Julien and took over the bench himself because Gainey didn't think the team was using its speed to create enough scoring chances. Now they've had 15 shots and 12 shots in their last two games, so good to see Gainey's got them using that speed.
MY TWO CENTS: The shootout has been one of the best things the NHL has introduced in years. I'm hearing even old-schoolers who were opposed to it grudgingly admit it's a much-needed spectacle. I find myself rooting for teams not to score in overtime now.
PARTING SHOT: When Daly's wife, Sherrie, went into the crowbar hotel the other day to serve five months for money laundering, Daly didn't drop out of the Buick Invitational and had a good first round. "Isn't that every guy's perfect day?" wondered a talk show host here. "Your wife goes to jail for five months and you shoot 69."
CYBERSPACED (the way e-mails should be): habs@lance/tabernoosh.ca
Chris, Whoops, there goes another one.
Regards, Jose Theodore's Five-Hole, Montreal, Que.
Shots on the Net