About a quarter past 2 CST I got comfortable turned on the old tube, in this case literally the tv in our computer room in is a pre 2000 Curtis-Mathis 19 inch top o the line. No High Def for me. I was getting ready to watch game 4 of the Los Angeles Lakers-Dallas Mavericks series. That's when I was in formed that at 3 my nephew at a baseball game and we were going. I was less than thrilled to say the least. It may have been the last time today I didn't have a smile on my face.
So Far this series had gone unbelievably better than I could have ever imagined. Dallas was up 3-0 on the bickering Lakers. Gasol, Bynum and Odom were doing nothing when they got their hands on the ball which was less and less since Kobe was ignoring them and playing hero ball. Even though the Lakers faced an 0-3 deficit and had blown an 8 point lead late in game 3 I still kept saying "these are the Lakers and these are the Mavericks." At some point LA is not going to go out like this. Even if they don't do the impossible they'll win one in Dallas and one in LA before going out." Of all the things you can say about the Lakers and their fan base they were a franchise with far too much pride to be out and out punked by a second rate choke organization like the Mavs. They might not win but they wouldn't go out like chumps.
Uh yeah. I heard the first quarter on the radio and Dallas had a small lead but LA was hanging in the game. However the seeds of the oncoming Laker collapse had been planted. The only Laker doing anything in the first quarter was Kobe. No basketball team can win in the playoffs 1-5. From that point I had no idea what was transpiring in the game because I was watching 8 year olds trying to play Baseball. Just for your information little league baseball blows.
By the time I got back to the car, we were going to my brothers for burgers and a family gathering for my Mother the 4th quarter just started. ESPN radio said the Mavs were 12 minutes from advancing and I said cool. Then I heard the score. I let out a scream and pumped my fist to the heavens. As a hard core Laker hater things were only about to get better.
First Lamar Kardashian was called for a flagrant foul and thrown out of the game. Honestly after seeing the foul it wasn't that bad but still... Then Andrew Bynum 7 feet tall clothes-lined 6 ft J.J. Barea. He of the hella screens. Bynum was ejected. ESPN radio (ESPN RADIO!!! Laker to the core) called out the Lakers. Saying they were defending two time champions they were going out but they should go out like grown men not like this. Mike Tirico calling the game on ABC-Espn said:
"Tirico: "That's one of the biggest bush league things I have ever seen. That is TERRIBLE!"
Tirico (later): "That's one of the most bush league things I've ever seen in a game. That's DISGUSTING"
Not only were the Lakers losers in the worst possible fashion on the score-board they were now losers in the personal sense. The kind of losers some of us thought they were when they were winning on the court. This ugly classless side of the Lakers didn't suddenly surface out of frustration Saturday. Ron Artest, NBA citizenship award winner spent game 2 talking to the Staple Center crowd about how they wouldn't lose. Then when it was apparent that they were in fact going to lose he laid out a clothes-line of his own. Citizen Artest was suspended for game 3. Phylis Jackson was fined $35,000for actually bitching about the officiating.
NBA citizenship awards aside it's no secret Citizen Artest is a piece of human shit. When he played for the Indiana Pacers The "man" once started a brawl so bad the Palace of Auburn Hills that they had to end the game and clear the arena. Almost no other team in the NBA would take him except the Lakers whom seem to have no personal standards for their players. Now were suppose to be surprised that the other players have caught the Artest bug? Really?
Artest went out writing checks with his mouth that his ass couldn't cash. Bynum and Kardashian like punks. Gasol played like shit the entire series possibly because of personal issues but good ol' Kobe Kobe did nothing wrong. He never does. Never-mind that the Lakers were up by 8 with 7 minutes left to go Friday with him out of the game and as soon as he came in and took 4 bad shots ignoring teammates the game was tied and the Mavs had momentum they wouldn't lose. A truly great player (Jordan, Magic, Bird) makes his team-mates better. Kobe treats his like shit when he isn't completely ignoring them. On the plus side Shannon Brown and Luke Walton still seem like good guys. That's something.
When I finally got to a TV the game was all but over. There was about 4 minutes left and Luke "The Human surrender flag." Walton was about to come in. The Lakers had long since quit and had given up any chance of going out with anything resembling class or dignity. That the Lakers didn't put up any fight and proved to have not an ounce of pride or dignity as a competitive basketball team or as competitive basketball players was a huge surprise. Even to a supreme Laker hater like me. That the Lakers proved to not have an ounce of pride or dignity as human beings...not so much.