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Wake-up call: Red Sox, Troy Polamalu, Jerry Jones

October 17, 2008 | 10:17 am

J.D. Drew hits the game-winner.

First things first: Red Sox Nation is still celebrating. Except maybe for those members who fell asleep or turned the TV off or otherwise left Game 5 before it was over. They missed an instant classic. The comeback, in which Boston scratched its way back from a 7-0 hole starting in the bottom of the 7th inning, is the second-greatest in posteason history. By the time it was over (12:15 a.m. Boston time according to the box score and 12:17 a.m. according to radio play-by-play man Jon Miller), the Sox had won 8-7.

Never Say Die I: The comeback is the second-greatest in postseason history. You have to go to Oct. 12, 1929, for No. 1, when the Philadelphia Athletics overcame an eight-run deficit to beat the Chicago Cubs in Game 4 of the World Series. The Yankees are involved in the next-greatest, coming back from being six runs down to beat the Atlanta Braves 8-6 in Game 4 of the 1996 World Series, but letting the Dodgers come back by six runs in Game 2 of the 1956 World Series to lose 13-8.

Never Say Die II: There were plenty of heroes, from ex-Dodger J.D. Drew, who came through in the clutch twice last night, to clutch relieverJonathan Papelbon (video below).

A hard hit? Much is being said, still, of the comments made the other day by former USC star and current Pittsburgh Steelers star Troy Polamalu. He said, among other things, that football is becoming "like a pansy game" and questioned whether the league is truly concerned about safety -- that maybe it was all about the money. Polamalu was clearly angry over recent fines to teammate Hines Ward (a total of $15,000 over two games for unnecessary roughness). Commissioner Roger Goodell, though, seemed largely unperturbed by the hit but clearly wasn't happy.

Is hitting allowed? Just kidding, but ESPN's "NFL Nation" blog talks about how Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says he played catch with Tony Romo before Wednesday's practice. Can't help but wonder what that must have looked like. Any errant throws -- or dropped ones?

A tougher team? Steve Yzerman apparently will be named executive director of Canada’s hockey team for the 2010 Vancouver Games. The Detroit Red Wings executive replaces Wayne Gretzky, who held the job for the past two Olympics. How much do you want to bet Canada wins the gold in 2010?

-- Debbie Goffa

Editor's note: Game 6 reference changed to Game 5 at 12:20 p.m.

Photo: J.D. Drew hits the game-winner in the ninth inning in Game 5. Credit: Charles Krupa / Associated Press