First the good news: like lots of other people, the 49ers are fleeing San Francisco (though maybe the Pelosi pork machine will get them to reconsider), heading south down Route #101 to nearby Santa Clara, where they intend to build a modern stadium to replace the rapidly aging Candlestick Park. Naturally, local San Francisco officials are responding the only way they know how, by attempting to bully the team:
Democratic Assemblyman Mark Leno said he is looking into introducing a bill that would prohibit professional sports teams not based in the city from using San Francisco in their names unless authorized by the mayor and board of supervisors.
“The name San Francisco has cachet all over the world as a No. 1 destination spot,” said Leno, who represents the part of San Francisco where the Niners play their home games. “I don’t think San Francisco’s name should automatically be able to be used by a franchise that is not located in the city.”
Something tells me the NFL’s team of lawyers will win that battle.
Now the horrible news: 74-year old ex-Niners legend Bill Walsh is battling leukemia:
“I’m positive, but not evangelistic,” the 74-year-old Walsh told The (Santa Rosa) Press Democrat and The Sports Xchange Web sites. “I’m pragmatically doing everything my physicians recommend, and I’m working my way through it.”
Walsh said the cancer first was diagnosed in 2004, but he feels better since a series of blood transfusions in the past month.
“The worst phase was three or four weeks ago. I’ve come back dramatically since, and I’m better,” he said.
I hope he’s right–and hopefully all football fans’ thoughts and prayers are with him, whatever their thoughts on the Niners themselves are.