If He Can't Hit, Will He Change It to Awful Terrible Monds III?

His name is Wonderful Terrific Monds III, and he is trying to live up to it while striving to secure a spot on the Atlanta Braves' roster as an outfielder.

So how did he get such a name?

It goes back to a great-grandfather who had longed for a son and grew increasingly exasperated after 11 daughters.

Finally, Monds' great-grandmother delivered a boy, much to the relief of her husband.

"He was very enthused, very happy," Monds recalled. "He said, 'Oh, this is wonderful! This is terrific!' "

It became a tradition that the first boy in each generation passed along the name to his first son.

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Trivia time: The 1971-72 Lakers hold the NBA record for the longest winning streak at 33 games. Which NBA franchise has the second-longest streak?

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Jungle logic: Sam Smith of the Chicago Tribune wrote that Utah's John Stockton had this to say when he was told he had surpassed 13,000 points to go with 11,000 assists:

"Did I do that? It's like my dad always said: 'You put a monkey at a typewriter long enough and you'll eventually come up with something good.' "

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My way, or . . . : Tony Kornheiser in the Washington Post on Georgetown basketball Coach John Thompson: "Like Bobby Knight, Thompson is a control freak. He hates it when you speak to his players. He wants to speak for his players. He wants to tell everyone what to do. Heck, he wants to write this column."

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Crazy cup: Mike Monroe in the Denver Post: "At a recent game at United Center, drink cups had a likeness of Dennis Rodman with blond hair, but when you poured in a cold liquid, the hair changed to red or green. When liquid was gone and the cup warmed, it changed back to blond."

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Care package: Albert Belle got some brownies in the mail from a fan and decided to share them, which caused one of his Cleveland teammates to observe: "Let's hope they're not from Hannah Storm."

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Select club: Ray Ratto writes in the San Francisco Examiner that Don Nelson is the second coach in NBA history to be fired in the middle of successive seasons by different teams:

"In case this matters, the other was Harry Gallatin, a hard-working, well-meaning basketball lifer who got smoked in St. Louis in the middle of the 1965 season and then after 21 games of 1966 was employed by [organ chords indicating inexplicable irony here] the Knicks."

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Easy choice: In the Houston Rockets' media guide, Kenny Smith's ambition is listed as "to own a stock brokerage or be a journalist."

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Trivia answer: The Milwaukee Bucks won 20 consecutive games from Feb. 6, 1971 to March 8, 1971.

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Quotebook: Chicago Bull chairman Jerry Reinsdorf on turning 60: "It's kind of depressing to realize that you're probably in the final quarter of your life. I'm just hoping for a goodovertime."

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