Another team beset by turmoil and tragedy: pro football's New York Giants.
Already shocked by last year's traffic death of defensive tackle Troy Archer and this year's discovery of lymphoma, a malignancy of the lymph nodes, threatening young linebacker Dan Lloyd's carreer -- and life -- the Giants opened a minicamp yesterday with announcements that:
Center Keith Eck (a shorttime Redskin, once) suffered a heart attack on his way east from Los Angeles this week and preliminary indication from the Chicago hospital is that Eck, 24, wonT be able to play this year. (Lloyd is out "at least" the next two seasons.)
Defensive tackle John Mendenhall, the tough nine-year veteran, has demanded to be traded. And, says Coach Ray Perkins, "we plan to accommodate him."
The Giants recently placed Mendenhall on waivers, but they say the Redskins -- against whom he invariably has played well -- were the only team to express interest. Mendenhall, saying, "They (management) started it, not me," is believed to have requested a trade to Houston, his hometown.
"I will try to place him where he wants to go," says Perkins, "even if I don't get anything for him" . . .
One more door shut on Dick Motta, if the San Antonio newspaper report (denied by the club) that the Spurs want Chuck Daly as their coach is true.
Add Cuban refugees: Eulogio Antonio Alberto, 29, head coach of the island's national swimming team, asking political asylum in the United States. He skipped after a meet in Puerto Rico . . .
What price glory? Goaltender Glenn (Chico) Resch is so happy with his New York Islanders' Stanley Cup triumph that he has asked to be traded. "There are a lot of reasons I don't want to come back," Resch said after a meeting with General Manager Bill Torrey -- mainly, it is evident, Resch's itch to play while Billy Smith was getting the call in goal for 19 of the team's 21 playoff games.
Quite a story developing, maybe, in the hitting streak of the Minnesota Twins' Ken Landreaux that has reached the semimagic 30-game plateau: it started April 23, when he broke up a no-hit bid by California's Bruce Kison in the ninth inning. Another steal for Cal Griffith, getting rising star Landreaux plus others from the Angels in the 1979 preseason deal for fading (?) star Rod Carew . . . .
But not as big a steal as Griffith's heist of the original Washington Senators to the Northland after the 1960 season. That team was only five years from jelling into a pennant winner, and one of the Griffith clan, Billy Robertson, was on hand as bygones were let be bygones at the Alexandria Grandstand Managers' 25th birthday celebration and reunion of old Nats the other night. Bob Allison, Roy Sievers and Jim Lemon glowed at the gathering -- helped along by a Nat Allbright recreation of a Nat-Yankee dream game at Griffith Stadium and some reminiscing by Shirley Povich. And the skipper of those days, Cookie Lavagetto, a happy retiree, looked like a million.