Monday, March 25, 2002

WEEKEND NBA WRAPUP: Marc Stein on ESPN brings the tough news that whatever we may wish otherwise the Lakers are still the clear favorite to win it all. Watching them play the Kings yesterday I discovered I don't have a problem with Shaq and Kobe --Shaq's an amiable goof with freakish natural size and talent, and Kobe doesn't annoy me nearly as much as Jordan ever did-- but I still hate Phil Jackson. Someone else on ESPN is actually claiming this is the Kings' year. When franchise player Chris Webber actually makes the shot that gives his team the win with four seconds to go, I'll believe that.

The Nets beat the Bucks and the Hawks this weekend. Ken and I actually witnessed the Nets blowing out the Bucks; I think the Bucks are going to be always the bridesmaid, never the bride for many years now. Maybe the Nets will wind up the same way, but there's every reason to be optimistic with their future. Well, I think so. All we need is crazy Mark Cuban finally getting the right team together to defeat Buddhist claptrap-spouting Jackson and the Lakers and the Nets can play for the title. Provided they get past the Sixers, of course --who are such an intense team. They're very much the Temple Owls of the NBA in not having the most talented team but in finding ways to win when it counts. Me and Ken also debated who the most famous New Jerseyan was. He said Sinatra, I said Springsteen. I swear there's more stations playing playing Springsteen these days, but Ken pointed out older people are more likely to know Sinatra than the Boss. So it's debatable.

Clippers watch: Still not in the playoffs. Dang. C'mon, Stockton, Malone, it's time to bow out gracefully and let the Clips in. You're just going to get embarrassed again. The world needs the Clippers in the playoffs.

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