Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Blogger on the Air

This just in: Jim Rome had his first blogger on today.

"Eklund", who is a well-connected hockey blogger was a guest on the show, and as you might imagine, he talked about a number of hockey-related topics.

Episode III: Revenge of the Jackson

In case you haven't heard, "Big Chief Triangle" is back.

Never mind that Phil Jackson broke "the sanctity of the locker room" prinicple that he holds so dearly by writing a tell-all book. He's back in the very locker room he violated the sanctity of.

Never mind that there's an NBA finals game going on and Detroit just made the series intriguing last night by winning. They had to have the press conference yesterday and steal their thunder. (I would not begrudge Detroit fans for being angry at this.)

Never mind that Kobe had problems with Phil and Phil demanded a trade. The two are back together.

I really don't think the Lakers had much of a choice. Sure, they tried to make a run at Larry Brown, but he may not be in the health to coach Kobe (and you'd be in another Rudy T. situation), and they considered Flip Saunders, but his superstar experience is with Kevin Garnett, who has a totally different mental makeup than Kobe.

Still, this isn't the same Lakers that Phil left. "The Most Dominant Force in the NBA" went East. The team is capped out for the next 2 years and really can't make moves. Lamar Odom may not be the Scottie Pippen to Kobe's Jordan. And they don't have a true point guard. (Good luck finding one of those)

And there's too many unknowns. We don't really know how Phil can handle a middling team. He had a team on the cusp of greatness when he took over the Bulls and had an instant contender in his first tenure with the Lakers. This team isn't close to being a contender and won't be until they can get out from under cap hell. Can they beat Phoenix or San Antonio with what they have right now? Nope. They still don't have the personnel to defend Amare Stoudamire or Tim Duncan.

Then there's the issue of Phil's rather unusual methods. More than half the roster wasn't around the Lakers when Kobe and Shaq were winning titles, so this is new to a lot of the team. NBA players will give new things a try but they will only buy into an unusual method so long as it works. Also, the key guy that was around the last time Phil was there, Kobe, doesn't completely buy into the system.

Still, this helps the Lakers in 2 areas: First, it at least gives them a name that Southern California fans respect. In a place where image is the major determining factor, it improves the overall image of the team.

Second, It shifts the balance of real power in the Laker organization away from Kobe Bryant. It makes Phil Jackson the de facto GM because of his connections to the Buss family, and puts him in a better position to dictate the terms under which Kobe plays. Next time there is a blowup, don't be surprised if you hear Kobe trade rumors.

If he were really God, would he really be playing for Florida State?

More Troubled times at Florida State. Starting quarterback Wyatt Sexton was recently put in a hospital after causing a disturbance and claiming to be God.

Wyatt better be careful. The last nut that claimed to be God in this country got his compound burned to the ground.

More Opinion:
Corey at Sporting Fools

Tomorrow: TBA
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