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They’re not standing around the watercooler, but Cheryl Sadler, Mark Meszoros, Mark Podolski and Nicole Franz are talking about what they’ve been watching, listening to and playing during their free time.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Truly the finest group of C-listers anywhere in the world

NBC on Thursday revealed the cast for this year’s edition of “Celebrity Apprentice,” and we couldn’t be more thrilled.

We have current and former athletes (Dennis Rodman, Natalie Gulbis, Herschel Walker and Scott Hamilton), poker pro Annie Duke (apparently, her brother and fellow card slinger Howard “The Professor” Lederer was already booked to get fleeced again by Phil Ivey and Doyle Brunson on NBC’s late-night series “Poker After Dark”). We have E! all-stars like Khloe Kardashian and Melissa and Joan Rivers. We have musical acts like Brian McKnight and Clint Black. And we have a couple weirdos, like Tom Green (and yes, you can throw Rodman in this category too). In all, there are 16 C-listers ready to go to work for our favorite grand poobah of hyperbole, Donald Trump.

Some predictions:
- If Baldwin-Wallace graduate/“Deal or No Deal” briefcase model Claudia Jordan couldn’t stand working for Bob Barker on “The Price is Right,” claiming sexual harassment, there’s no way she stands the dog-eat-dog atmosphere of “Apprentice.” The price is wrong for you, Claudia.

- In the boardroom, Andrew Dice Clay’s defense of a poor performance will somehow devolve into “Hickory, dickory, dock ...” and Trump will can him before a hysterical member of NBC’s standards and practices group collapses off camera.

- Our pick to win? Scott Hamilton. According to an Associated Press story Thursday, Hamilton has watched past seasons of the show (which probably gives him a competitive edge over nearly all the contestants before he even puts on a power tie and pinstripe suit). And don’t be fooled by his nice-guy demeanor on figure skating broadcasts. This guy beat testicular cancer. No way Trump’s boardroom bombast can overwhelm him. Triple lutz, triple salchow, stick the landing, Scott. You’re our guy.

The show premieres at 9 p.m., Sunday, March 1.

- Tom Valentino


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