“Its like a nightmare. It’s like a bad dream and we couldn’t wake up out of it. That’s what it felt like.” Those words by Dwight Howard sum up perfectly, the season that was for the Los Angeles Lakers. Sunday night, the Lakers season ended in a whirlwind, getting ousted out of the playoffs by the San Antonio Spurs 103-82. To top it off, Dwight Howard, was ejected with 9:32 left in the third quarter. Many on twitter believe that Dwight Howard quit on the Lakers, similar to Lebron James quitting on the Cavaliers in 2010. Is this Dwight’s last game in purple and gold? Possibly. Via Dave McMenamin, Dwight Howard will explore free agency. He will not sign immediately on July 1, but will be entertained by teams like the Cleveland Cavaliers and, Dallas Mavericks. Despite his exit last night, I don’t see him leaving for two reasons: 1) He has a point to prove. He and the team were decimated by injury, and this along with Mike D’antoni being hired five games into the season, didn’t allow the team to gel. Dwight never was able to fully showcase his skill set. 2) Money, Money, Money. Dwight Howard will get a 5 year, 118 million dollars contract. With his injury issues (back, shoulder), he may never get a max contract again. Plus he will leave over 31 million dollars of guaranteed money, not to mention a plethora of other sponsorships because he plays in Los angeles, on the table. I don’t see that happening.
Again, it is a possibility he will leave. Changes will have to be made. They have to get younger and more athletic. Steve Nash will be 40, and was hobbled all year. They need to get a younger quicker point guard. Maybe Devin Harris or Nate Robinson. Depending on salary space, I would go after JR Smith. With Kobe recovering from his Achilles tear, the Lakers will need scoring and perimeter defense. Smith will help in both departments. Honestly though Phil Jackson needs to be hired in some capacity. With Phil now in the Buss family, he needs to have a position. Like Pat Riley, he could use his winning acumen, to mold this team into a contender. I would love to see Jackson in a advisory role, similar to the role Jerry West is in as an advisor for Golden State. He will be well respected and all would listen. This has been a nightmare of a season, but because it is a nightmare, Lakers nation can wake up and move on from this. The entire Lakers organization, became the whipping post and laughingstock of the NBA. So with that being said, everyone from Jim and Jeanie Buss to Jodie Meeks have a point to prove. This is a winning organization, and with necessary changes made, the Lakers will continue to be the talk of the town, but for the usual reasons. Now that the press interviews have been conducted, we can officially focus on 2013-2014 season.
Have you ever heard the adage, when it rains it pours? The English Dictionary describes it as: that when things go wrong, a lot of things go wrong at the same time. This perfectly describes the Lakers current situation. In game 2 vs the San Antonio Spurs, Steve Blake left the game with a hamstring strain. He is out indefinitely. Steve Nash, via Espn, had another epidural and cortisone shot, to relieve inflammation for a hamstring and lower back injury. He is doubtful to play. Jodie Meeks had a MRI Thursday, and was diagnosed with a partial ligament tear in his ankle. He is also doubtful. If Nash and Meeks are a no go, Darius Morris and recently acquired D league MVP Andrew Goudelock, will possibly start. This means that Laker have to continue to focus on Defense, and playing post focused kick out basketball. Dwight Howard will have to stay out of foul trouble, and play stellar basketball, for the Lakers to have a shot. Pau Gasol will have to continue to play well, and he needs to be the key decision maker. The Lakers will be at home, so hopefully some home cooking will give then an advantage. The Lakers are in a 0-2 hole against the #2 seed Spurs, who have finally gotten good play from star point guard Tony Parker. Parker had 25 points in a bounce back performance. Tip-off will be at 7:30 Pacific time.
We all have seen Kobe Bryant get knocked down, but inexplicably get back up. Countless times he has beat the odds, defining his legacy. Last night he was knocked down, and most of the basketball world thought he would get up. This time he was knocked down by father time. In last nights 118-116 victory over Golden State, Kobe tried to blow by rookie forward, Harrison Barnes. After turning the corner, he fell without contact. At first look I thought he reaggravated his ankle, but Kobe could hardly put any weight on it. The Lakers called a timeout, hoping that Kobe’s iron will, his mamba blood, would magically heal him. He limped to the line, and swished both free throws, maybe there is a chance. After he made the shots, the Lakers fouled so Bryant could go to the bench. Reality hit as Lakers center Robert Sacre, had to help Bryant to the locker room. Yet still, its Kobe, he will come back and hit the game winner. As all Lakers fans had one eye on the game, they had the other on the tunnel, hoping he would emerge from the ashes like every hero we watched as kids. But he never emerged. We all tuned in after hoping, wishing that it wasn’t as severe. But again reality hit, when Kobe had his presser and said these three words: “I can’t walk”. He fought back tears, and sure every fan has seen him cry, but not like this. He looked down and sounded dejected. Which led many to ask this question: is this it? The average torn achilles takes 9-12 months to heal (see Chauncey Billups), The Lakers believe it will be 6-9 months in Kobes case. Some analysts belive he will be out most of the season, the final year of his contract, and possibly his career. Some feel he wont be as explosive, but the question is: Does Kobe think its over? Is the 34 points he dropped last night, his swan song, his last defining moment? No. Kobe had his MRI earlier today, and is currently having surgery to repair the ruptured Achilles tendon. He will work and train rigorously, if you see him he will have a stoic yet focused look. He will take all doubt and anger, and turn it into fuel. He will turn his tears into energy and his sadness into zeal. Sure I never met him, and I don’t know his inner thoughts, but his work ethic, and focus are unparalleled. He will probably lose sleep because of this. He will have moments of dejection, but ultimately he will fight. He likes odds, and the odds, and father time are against him. Kobe said this though: “it’s fueling me”. So we know that he plans on coming back, and beating the odds and father time. I see him coming back by December, and going out on his terms. His swan song won’t play until he presses play. He wont give up till he throws in the towel. As a Lakers fan, and a Kobe fan: I wish you the best, and we will see you next season.
It just keeps getting better. Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant, has been diagnosed with bone spurs via ESPN. Bryant was visibly hampered last night in a loss to the Milwaukwe Bucks. Although he scored 30 points, he missed 11 of 17 shots, and had 6 turnovers in the defeat. Kobe will see a foot specialist in Sacramento today, before they face off against the Kings. This again comes at a terrible time. The Lakers are clinging to the 8th seed, with a 1/2 game lead over the Utah Jazz, and 1 1/2 game lead over the Dallas Mavericks. Earlier this week they lost Metta World Peace for the season, after surgey to repair a torn meniscus in his knee.
The Lakers proved two things tonight. That 1) they again couldn’t win after a back to back, and 2) that Kobe Bryant was sorely missed. With Bryant (severely sprained ankle) missing his second consecutive game, and coming off a win against the Kings last night, The Lakers looked tired in their 99-76 loss to the lowly Phoenix Suns. Phoenix one of the western conferences worst teams, looked like coach D’antoni and Steve Nash were on their team. They outscored the listless Lakers 28-10 in the fourth quarter, and shot 48%. D’antoni finally stretched his rotation, but only because the game was clearly over. The Lakers committed 18 turnovers, and shot only 33% Steve Nash led the way with 19 points and 4 assists. Dwight Howard despite a strong 1st quarter (11 points 6 rebounds), finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Fortunately, the team doesn’t play again until Wednesday, and might get Pau Gasol and Kobe back, when they go against the Washington Wizards at the Staples center. Pau who has been out since early February, with a torn plantar fascia, will start upon his return. Earl Clark has been struggling as of late (4 points 10 rebounds against Phoenix), will get a much needed boost playing with the second unit. The Lakers still hold the 8th seed by a game, with the Utah Jazz losing at home to the New York Knicks. They are 1 game behind the Houston Rockets for the 7th spot in the playoff race.
Via Espn. Los Angeles star, Kobe Bryant is a gametime decision for tonights game versus Indiana Pacers. Bryant was injured in Wednesdays 96-92 loss to the Atlanta Hawks, after he landed on Hawks guard Dahntay Jones foot. Bryant was diagnosed with a severe ankle sprain and is out indefinitely. Many viewed the play (including Kobe) by Jones to be a “dirty play”, yet there was no foul called. The NBA issued a statement, saying that the refs should have blown the whistle. Jodie Meeks will start if Kobe isn’t able to do so.
The 2012-2013 Los Angeles Lakers, have been a shocking anomaly. If you told me a team that consist of one of the best floor generals ever, 2 players who have won a combined 4 Defensive player of the year awards, plus you have Kobe Bryant, are three games under %500. I would’ve laughed at you, and wagered anything that you were wrong. Unfortunately I would have lost that wager. That’s what these Lakers are. On Monday February 18, 2013, Jerry Buss, the legendary owner of the Lakers succumbed to an undisclosed form of cancer. He was 80 years old. The naismith hall of fame billionaire, won 10 titles in 34 years. A unprecedented accomplishment. He made the Lakers the brand they are today, and introduced the world to the “Showtime” era. He always had the desire to win, and always made the moves (even when it was a gamble) to make the team better. I wonder how Dr. Buss, in his final days, felt about the discord and lower than expectations, his team had shown the last 3 months. He watched as the team became decimated by injury, showed a lack of chemistry on and off the court, and Dwight Howard, most of the time looked disinterested, down and disgruntled. Did he worry that the brand he superbly crafted would be destroyed and never seen again? No. The hard work, the determination, the dedication, and the resiliency were the threads that kept the fabric of his dreams a reality. He instilled this in those who worked with him, those who met him only briefly, and most importantly his family. The Lakers have struggled this year, and the chances of them winning a ring, let alone making the playoffs, has dwindled to impossibility. This franchise isn’t your average franchise. They have been dealt with many obstacles over the years. Any other franchise would have crumbled when the face of there team was forced to retire due to the HIV virus. Or when there two best players clashed to the point of hatred. This isnt your average franchise. This is Jerrys franchise. After a hearfelt montage and speech by Kobe before they faced the Celtics. The Lakers played inspired basketball, defeating there rivals 113-99. They looked determined to win, and thats what was accomplished. The Lakers, 54 games in, finally put on display, that they can play cohesive team basketball. They played the way virtually every analyst predicted. We know Kobe loves to play with a vendetta (thanks Mr. Cuban). Dwight, although his torn labrum will be a problem. Seems to finally be getting some lift, after his back surgery in the summer. Most importantly, he’s playing more focused (his screens are more efficient) and he’s playing with accountability. Can the Lakers make the playoffs? Yes. Will they win #17? Probably not. They are finally playing the type of ball Dr. Buss has instilled in them. They are playing with determination ,dedication, and resiliency. And when they play that way, with this talent, anything is feasible. Plus they are playing inspired basketball.
So Lakers, please do it for Jerry. He dedicated his life to Los Angeles, he gave his all so we as fans would be happy and remain interested. There would be no Kareem, Magic, Shaq, or Kobe, without his will to win. Now that his suite chair is empty, the time is now to play the type of ball, he desired. Jerry, your Legacy will live on.
man. what a sad occasion
why did my mom end up in a bad location.
years of sickness led to her demise.
she was my song, but now a distant reprise.
Dad stares at her, resentment surrounds.
Apologizing to Dennen and me, “sorry I let you down”.
Emotions are rapid and fluctuate.
Just a few minutes ago, they couldnt resuscitate.
My mom fought hard, design of a martyr.
room 1208 800 pm, time of departure.
Why mommy? Im disgusted by imperfection.
Im staring in the mirror, watching her reflection.
15 months im glad I didn’t know then.
That I would be saying goodbye by kissing her cold skin.
Dad holds her close, his tears hit her face.
No resemblance of my mommy, not even a trace.
But fortunately there is a promise and hope.
Paradise, The ransoms anecdote.
Ill see you soon in perfections apparel.
All of us will stay on that cramped and narrow.
This isnt goodbye, this a see you soon.
I look forward to seeing your beautiful smile emerge from the tomb.
Last night, I was watching “Superman Returns”. Despite it not being my favorite Superman movie (that goes to 1978’s Superman: The Movie), I do watch it from time to time. It has empty plot moments sporadically through the movie, but there are some good moments.
One of my favorite moments, is when Clark returns to the Daily Planet. Jimmy shows him around the office, yet Clark’s only focus is finding Lois Lane. Clark goes to her desk, and smiles as he sees her Pulitzer. Then he sees the editorial piece that won her the award: “Why the world doesn’t need Superman”.
When he sees that, his smile disappeared. Even though he left earth for a good reason (he left to see if Krypton still existed), when he saw those words written by someone he cared about, it hit him like a ton of kryptonite laced bricks. This was something he never wanted to see.
So as I watched this, I started to think about Dwight Howard. As a former Orlando resident, I was able to witness the impact he had on the city beautiful. His hand in the community, his comical personality (pun intended), and his gentle nature, really helped Magic fans to get over the Shaq years. But sadly, the Shaq years have been revisited.
For the past year, basketball fans have had to deal with the “Dwightmare”. Dwight Howard appeared to be a wishy washy nuisance. Even though the media may have embellished a bit, Dwight Howard did not want to remain a member of the Orlando Magic. He finally got his wish.
During 2011-2012 season, it was a foregone conclusion, that Dwight would be traded. Right before the trade deadline however, Dwight decided to wave his early termination option. Also various sources say that Dwight Howard would not remain in Orlando, if head coach Stan Van Gundy was still with team.
Then a few weeks after, Dwight had a season ending back injury. Many believed he had played his last game in the Orlando blue and white. The inevitable has taken place.
Like Superman, he might have a good reason why he needs to leave. He might see it as a chance to win a ring, or as a better financial situation for his family. Just don’t expect a warm welcoming, the first time you return to Orlando.
In fact, you should expect a hostile enviroment when you return as a Los Angeles Laker March 12th. Magic fans will try to forget you were ever here. Also, I wouldn’t read the paper either. Because a journalist will write a scathing column known as: “Why the Orlando Magic don’t need Superman.” This is when reality will hit, and the smile you always wore will disappear.
As Serena made her way to centre court Saturday morning. There was no smile, no on surface signs of nervousness. There was a focused, yet stoic demeanor as she walked through the Wimbledon corridors. She was determined to win. And win she did.
Serena won her fifth Wimbledon matching her sister Venus’ in wins on centre court. She defeated #3 seed Agniezka Radwanska in three sets 6-1, 5-7, 6-2. This is Serena’s 14th major title, 6th place all time behind Martina Navratilova.
Early on, Serena was poised and determined. She dominated early, winning the first set 6-1. Going into the second set she remained focused, until the rain came. The short rain delay, seemed to rattle Serena a bit. Radwanska went on to win the second set, 7-5.
Radwanska, seemed nervous and overwhelmed in the first set. She was able to regain form, and show why she’s #3 in the world. Serena, however, had other plans.
In the deciding set, Serena regained her composure. With her powerful serve, she froze Aggie multiple times. Serena had 102 aces in 7 matches(17 in finals), compared to 34 by the next closest.
After defeating Radwanska, she immediately fell to the ground in triumph, and deservedly so. Since her last Wimbledon title in 2010, the road back to centre court was tough. On July 7th, 2010, Serena cut her foot at a restaurant.
This cut, forced Serena to have two surgeries. Then the unthinkable happened. Shortly after a flight from New York. Serena was hospitalized for a pulmonary embolism (blood clot) in her lung. This clot, if not treated, could’ve led to her death. So understandably so, she fell to the ground in Triumph.
Serena then ran into the stands, to hug her biggest supporters; her family. Today was more than just a victory, it was a moral victory. The trials and tribulations that led up to this moment, navigated Serena to this shining moment.
The smile, the tears, the happiness all evidence of a job well done. It showed a vulnerability that is not often shown in sports. As Serena headed back indoors. That focused, yet stoic demeanor, had vanished. It was replaced with the look of accomplishment, the look of completion.
Page 1 of 3