So, about all the rumors and innuendo regarding Pau Gasol’s personal life and how it affected the end of his season. You’d expect most members of the Lakers’ organization to remain silent about the issue. I mean, after all, talking about it, in any context, is only going to make things worse. You don’t want to exacerbate an already sensitive situation by drawing more attention to it. The media, paparazzi and yes, fans already do a good enough job bringing undue attention to minor situations and blowing them out of proportion. So it’s good that the Lakers have all exercised restraint in what I’m sure is a flurry of seedy allegations and preposterous rumors… crap.
From Shannon Brown on Twitter last night:
Well, done, Shannon. No one was really asking you that publicly, and if they were, we’d consider them to be idiots, but in making a bold, late night denial you’ve just added more fuel to the fire. As a side note, you may want to consider stressing your use of the possessive in instances such as this, as taking this tweet literally leads us to believe you did not sleep with that “Pau Gasol woman.” Which we’re pretty sure is not what you meant. If it is, then we have a whole other heap of stuff that we don’t want to talk about.
In Shannon’s defense, this does seem to be endemic of what’s been going on with him and the Lakers this month. Got ahead of themselves, didn’t think the situation through, fired something up, and missed a key element. In unrelated news, Peja Stojakovic has zero typos over the last month and a half.
Oh, well, Shannon, whatever gets you through the offseason.
On Friday, the Jazz traded German center Tibor Pleiss to the Sixers along with two second-round picks for Kendall Marshall. The big draw of the trade for Philly was the picks, and Pleiss is not expected to stay with the Sixers, according to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia’s Jessica Camerato.
Pleiss had a forgettable season with Utah, and the Sixers have a glut of bigs including Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. It would have been virtually impossible for Pleiss to crack the rotation, and it’s unlikely another team picks up his contract, which has $3 million guaranteed this season.
As a Jordan Brand athlete, Russell Westbrook is under the same Nike umbrella as former teammate Kevin Durant. But his latest Jordan spot, released Friday, has a very pointed tagline: “Some run, some make runways.”
Given the circumstances, it’s hard to interpret that as anything other than a reference to Durant signing with the Warriors and Westbrook signing an extension with the Thunder.
For two decades, Kobe Bryant saw everyone and everything as an obstacle to overcome: The Pacers, Sixers, Nets, Magic, Celtics, Tim Duncan, Gregg Popovich, Smush Parker, a torn Achilles. It didn’t matter. Kobe’s work ethic and drive had him rising above it all.
His focus hasn’t changed now. Kobe was on the Jim Rome show, and the topic of the new-look Warriors with Kevin Durant came up, along with the “woe is me” attitude of some players (and plenty of owners and GMs).
“I would have thought less about myself if I looked at that move and said, ‘That’s unfair,'” he said. “If you’re a real competitor, you look at that and say, ‘OK, lace ’em up. Let’s go. I don’t care how many players you have over there; we’re still going to take you down.'”
Easier said than done to make that happen, but that attitude is the only one to have if you think you have a chance. You can be sure LeBron James is thinking that way and telling his Cavaliers teammates the same.
We’re going to miss Kobe.
This news is just sickening. In a world with just too much sickening news.
According to NBC 5 in Chicago (which spoke to police), Dwyane Wade‘s first cousin Nykea Aldridge was pushing a stroller down the street when she was shot and killed as an innocent in the crossfire of a gang shooting.
The 32-year-old woman, whom family identified as Nykea Aldridge, was apparently the unintended victim of a gang shooting, police said. She was walking around 3:30 p.m. in the 6300 block of South Calumet when two males approached another male and opened fire, police said.
Wade tweeted this.
Aldridge was on her way to a local school to register her kids (they had just moved) when the shooting took place. There has been a rash of gang and gun violence in Chicago in the past year, and Dwyane’s mother Jolinda Wade had just been on a panel on ESPN’s Undefeated talking about it.
Wade is coming to play for his hometown Chicago Bulls this season.
Our thoughts are with Nykea Aldridge’s family and friends.