Saturday, November 20, 2004

THE PISTONS-PACERS BRAWL: Holy crud. My two clever comments, way after the fact:

It's too bad Jack Nicholson wasn't involved.

With Ron Artest and Stephen Jackson playing on the same team, something like this was bound to happen.

People are going to point to Artest with this one and they're going to be mostly wrong. I didn't see the game up to that point, so I don't know if he was being any more of his usual annoying self on the court--but there was seemingly no reason for Wallace to clobber him the way he did after a pretty standard foul. Maybe Ben was upset because the Pistons had gotten thoroughly smoked that night, or just frustrated by the Pistons' overall mediocre start, or maybe Ron Ron had been needling him all night. The point is, what Ben went right for Ron Ron's head and he's going to be suspended for a long time.

And Artest basically stayed out of it. He knows he has a bad rep that he's been slowly working himself out of. He's also completely nuts. He's not fake nuts like Rodman with the tatoos and the pink hair and the "look at me!" Ron is legit crazy--this is my understanding--and so when he's lying on the scorer's table he's cooling down in his own singular fashion. He is not attempting to show up the Pistons fans. So when he gets hit by a beer or a beer-like object--well, it still doesn't excuse charging the stands in my opinion. And from what I've heard the numbnuts went after the wrong guy when he did charge the stands.

But--but--this was not all him. And Stephen Jackson did not need to go running into the stands after him and whacking somebody else who had nothing to do with it. The two guys with the Pistons jerseys who came on the court after Artest--the heavier one, you will recall, took the punch in the face from Jermaine O'Neal--deserved what they got. So there you are.

The ESPN talking heads, by the way, were blaming the fans and thus defending the NBA product a bit too much for my tastes.

In other NBA news: the Suns beat the Lakers in what looked like a great game; Dwayne Wade put the Heat into OT after a cheap foul by Kirilenko and then won it for them; the Sonics are--inexplicably--9 and 1. That can't last.

In other basketball news: Santa Clara beat North Carolina. AWESOME.

In other college sports news: Utah plays BYU tomorrow in an attempt to go undefeated and truly mess with the BCS. Let's all hope they succeed. But if anybody can beat them in some fluky way it's BYU in the last game of the season. I had no idea they actually call this game the "Holy War."

That's sports. I also applaud Josh Marshall's attempt to find out how every Republican congressperson voted on the Delay rule.

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