Sunday, November 21, 2004

JUST MINDNUMBING: How is Artest gone for the season but Stephen Jackson coming back in 30? And Ron Ron's been on his best behavior for the last season or so.

Look--I'm an Artest fan. He's a character. I think he deserves punishment for what he did. Just not significantly more than Stephen Jackson, who really turned this thing into a full-fledged brawl. He's getting punished based on his past history, a history he has largely overcome. And neither Jackson nor Artest deserve jack shit if the Detroit organization is not getting punished because of the actions of their fans. How is Stern's judgement not saying. "You know what, fans? If there's a guy on the other team you think you can provoke into doing something stupid, by all means, throw a beer at him"? I hope another shoe is dropping here, but I doubt it. Stern would never do anything as actually innovative as punishing a fan base by making their team play a game in an empty arena.

What makes all this doubly shameful is the fact that the Pacers had smoked the Pistons, and that Artest had successfully needled Ben Wallace into flipping out. All that effort squandered on one thrown beer.

I don't think the thought crossed Ron Ron's mind that "Hey--if I retaliate, I can promote my crappy album!" but if it did, I would not be surprised.

And this is neither here nor there, but why, with 45 seconds and the game won, were Artest and Wallace still in the game?

Anyway, ridiculous stuff. Jermaine O'Neal should not be getting 25 games for hitting a guy who attacked his teammate on the friggin' court. And if you're throwing out Ron for the whole season, at least give Ben Wallace a few more games than 5 for starting the whole thing.

Utah won, by the way. They end up playing Boston College and smoking them in a bowl and then splitting the title with some BCS lackey squad, is my prediction. And so the BCS dies a little more.

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