Two stories I want to rant about today. I think it’s coincidental that they both become stories on the same day. I was reading this morning one of the reports on the Lakers’ loss to the Nuggets last night and it said “the 2012 NBA season more than any other, has had the Los Angeles Lakers looking towards their young center Andrew Bynum for big contributions” umm, I think Laker fans are still waiting! Ever since Bynum said “close out games are easy” he’s not made more than 3 field goals within 5 feet in any one game, he’s 7’2.
Then I read another quote from Kobe Bryant – who had a 100 degree temperature and a stomach virus yet was diving all over the floor for the loose balls. After the game, when asked about Metta World Peace, Kobe said “you know, he’s the one guy I can rely on night in and night out to compete and play hard on this roster” Laker fan, when Metta World Peace formerly Ron Artest is your rock, you are in trouble! When Metta World Peace is the one guy Kobe can count on – you are not a championship team and your season is pretty much over. Either it’s happening on Saturday night or four games after the Oklahoma City series begins. I got news for you because in Hollywood, when the director says “Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen are the only people I can count on” your project is dead!! It’s over and it’s time for drastic wholesale changes. Los Angeles is renowned for face lifts…you need one!
Unfortunately though, good luck getting rid of some of these pieces after this performance – the series is now irrelevant. Win or lose, statistically and historically you win this game at home but it’s so much greater and so much sadder than that. Kobe Bryant – in his 209th year playing in the NBA at a high level, 100 degree temperature, stomach flu – if you’ve never had it, it’s awful!! Yet he was all over the floor. Andrew Bynum though, after the game and after mailing it in, the best thing he could come up with was “man, Denver hit a bunch of shots” he said after the game “this game in particular, I was surprised and in amazement of the types of shots they were hitting. I didn’t play in the 4th quarter, Kinda sucks…”
For the record, find me an athlete with a bad attitude half way through his career and where it dramatically changed in the second half of his career as he become richer …diva is diva! Certainly Pau Gasol is to blame too and George Karl is outworking Mike Brown, but when players have to be shaken, poked, prodded, to get motivated for a playoff game, you’ve got the wrong players. Kevin Garnett – another guy in his 138th year in the league has his best game in over half a decade last night. Kobe Bryant – stomach flu and all was all over the floor. Hey Bynum, it’s not Tuesday in January against Charlotte, the last game of a 6 game road trip…it’s the playoffs!! What a joke!! I find the Denver Nuggets today really easy to root for – less experienced, no star player, down 3-1, win in LA, blew them out in Denver…I have no problem rooting for that effort.
But from one diva to the next, if you’re not a Red Sox fan – God bless you if you’re not, but if you’re not a Red Sox fan, you may not understand the gravitas of this story. The Red Sox’s –and they do this about every hour and a half these days, are blowing up – the bad kind. Let’s take you back to where the story began. It’s hard to imagine that anybody could lose the equity that Josh Beckett had several years ago – unbelievable in the playoffs, has one of the greatest post-season performances ever…yet he’s blown all the equity out, unbelievable! Red Sox’s can’t win at home, they’re falling apart – perhaps the worst team in the AL East and that’s not a stretch based on the way the Orioles have played the last few weeks.
So Beckett misses a start and says “ahh it’s my lat” that’s funny because he was apparently on a golf course, playing golf – a sport where you need your lat, as he missed yet another start for a team that desperately needs him. Combine that with him playing video games, drinking beer in the clubhouse during last September’s erosion and you’ve got a guy that is quickly becoming an unlikeable figure in Boston. He could have saved it though, reporters came up to him this past Thursday and asked him about the golfing, missing the start. Yet instead of being humble, instead of understanding the room temperature – here is his response “Reporter: Josh what impact, if any, did the whole golf thing have in terms of it being a distraction? Josh: nothing! Reporter: Do you have anything to say about that in general? I know it’s obviously a big story in Boston. Josh: no, because I’ll spend my off-days whatever way I want to spend them. Reporter: do you have any regrets that it could’ve hurt you because of the lat. Josh: my off-day is my off-day!” Ahh, that was great! You know what he just did? Do you know what Josh Beckett just did? He made Bobby Valentine incredibly likeable!
Bobby Valentine, you should thank Josh Beckett – he just did you a solid. Bobby Valentine, until that quote, had been reeling, getting booed and falling apart. Today you woke up and said “that’s what Bobby Valentine has to deal with?” the thing is, it got worse! Here’s the other bite he had where he was even worse! “Reporter: Josh, given that you skipped a start, do you think people have a right to question why you were playing golf when it was said for you to get some rest? Josh: Not on my off-day! Reporter: Do you understand the perception that leaves when the team is playing as poorly as you guys are right now? Josh: listen, we only get 18 off-days a year, I think we deserve a little bit of time off just for ourselves” Whoa, 18 off-days a month maybe – you’re a pitcher!