Gutierrez: Pro Bowl postcard -- a football luau


Gutierrez: Pro Bowl postcard -- a football luau


KAPOLEI, Hawaii -- Aloha, boss,

It took all of about five minutes to realize the hunger Hawaii still has for the NFL, even after being abandoned by it last year. Walking through the Honolulu airport to pick up my luggage, I was inundated with signs welcoming the Pro Bowl back to Oahu.

Driving the rental car to my hotel, I noticed Pro Bowl banners plastered all over Waikiki Beach and adorning every other building on the main drag. Part of me expected to see a helmet atop the statue of surf legend Duke Kahanamoku.

Did I mention how eager Hawaii is to play host to the NFLs all-star game?

Football players are literally walking the streets here. Driving in, I swear I saw Jevon Kearse in a crosswalk. I wanted to yell, Freak! But Tim Lincecum might have popped out and started singing some Hall and Oates, ya dig?

Anywho, it was pretty cool waking up and seeing the sun creep up over Diamond Head, then seeing the Pro Bowlers practice on a high school football field in West Oahu, while school was still in session. Fans parked all over the roads shoulder and they could get no closer than 50 yards or so ... to the buses. Still, they yelled and screamed for autographs. No way could they even see the shorts-and-helmets practices or hear the banter, such as when Ray Lewis protested, as only he can, about the length of practice. As a member of the media, I was able to stand on the sideline. Ill be sure to send in some Flipvids. Cool stuff, methinks.

Tee time, Lewis yelled at Bill Belichick. Dont we have a tee time to get to?

Well, Coach Hoodie, who has seemingly cut the hoodies (as well as the sleeves) off his favorite garments, actually showed some personality.

Youre not going back to (John) Harbaugh and telling him were not working on special teams, Belichick said of the Baltimore coach. How long are special teams meetings with him?

OK, cue up the Beli-cheat should just secretly videotape the Ravens special teams practices jokes. And get a chuckle out of DeAngelo Hall accidentally kicking an NFL Films camera, which was on the ground. LOL at a piece of the camera, which costs thousands of dollars, flying off and Hall simply pointing at his own shin, as if it was all the cameras fault. Then there was poor Roman Harper, who took the practice field with his jersey on backwards.

Well, you know what happened after that. I went to the team hotel, the ridiculously posh Ihilani Resort and Spa, and caught up poolside with Nnamdi Asomugha, who seemed genuinely melancholy about his free agency lot with the Raiders.

I was able to score an invite to the Pro Bowl welcome party on the beach and took in the luau. Not quite the Brady Bunch ending scene with Vincent Price and the taboo tiki idol. Instead, it began with a blow from the conch, continued with fire dances and hula and ended with a massive fireworks show that lit the night sky.

Really, though, this Pro Bowl party is just getting started.

Shaka, brah,

-- Paul.

P.S. And dont worry, I have my sunscreen with me at all times. SPF 25.

Sharks recall three; Donskoi to IR

Sharks recall three; Donskoi to IR

The Sharks have placed forward Joonas Donskoi on injured reserve, and recalled a trio of players for their game against Los Angeles on Wednesday at Staples Center.

Donskoi has not played since Jan. 11 at Calgary, dealing with an upper body injury that is not believed to be serious. Although he’ll miss his third straight game on Wednesday, the 24-year-old could technically return for Thursday’s home game against the Lightning. In 41 games this season, Donskoi has six goals and 14 points.

Up front, forwards Ryan Carpenter and Barclay Goodrow were recalled, suggesting that someone from Monday’s 5-2 win over the Jets might not be able to play against the Kings. Logan Couture blocked a Toby Enstrom shot with about nine minutes to go in that game, and there was no immediate update on his status. The Sharks did not practice on Tuesday morning.

Carpenter has one goal in three games with the Sharks this season, coming on Nov. 30 in Los Angeles. He has 20 points (8g, 12a) in 29 AHL games this season. 

Goodrow has yet to make his Sharks season debut, but is first on the AHL Barracuda with 12 goals. He has 15 points (4g, 11a) in 74 career NHL games.

Tim Heed, also recalled, will likely serve as the seventh defenseman filling the void left by an injured Dylan DeMelo (broken wrist).

Source: 49ers plan second interview with Shanahan; Cable withdraws name

Source: 49ers plan second interview with Shanahan; Cable withdraws name

The 49ers will interview Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan after this weekend’s NFC Championship game, a source told on Tuesday.

The only remaining head-coach candidate, Tom Cable, formally withdrew from consideration, according to his agent, Doug Hendrickson. Cable interviewed with the 49ers on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the 49ers also have a general manager vacancy to fill. The team is in the process of narrowing down their list of eight candidates, a source said. Seattle’s Trent Kirchner pulled his name from consideration on Tuesday. The 49ers could have a round of second interviews for the GM job.

The 49ers fired coach Chip Kelly and general manager Trent Baalke after the club finished the regular season with a 2-14 record.

The 49ers conducted their first interview with Shanahan on Jan. 6, as allowed by NFL rules, when the Falcons were on their bye in the first week of the playoffs as the NFC’s No. 2 seed.

The 49ers are allowed to conduct a second interview with Shanahan next week, regardless of whether the Falcons advance to the Super Bowl or their season comes to a conclusion against the Green Bay Packers.

If the Falcons advance to the Super Bowl, the 49ers would not be able to make a formal contract offer to Shanahan until following the Super Bowl.

Shanahan, 37, is the son for two-time Super Bowl-winning coach Mike Shanahan. He has served nine NFL seasons as an offensive coordinator. His offenses have ranked in the top-10 of total offense in six of those seasons.

Shanahan interviewed for the head-coaching vacancies with Jacksonville and Buffalo this offseason. Another scheduled interview with the Los Angeles Rams was canceled when Rams officials could not get to Atlanta due to weather conditions.