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I am a self proclaimed coffee addict and Executive Director of a non profit missions agency working primarily in the Mexican cities of Oaxaca, Guadalajara, and Ensenada. I've been married for over 30 years to Chelle, and we have one grown son, Joseph, a graduate of Auburn University in Alabama.

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Friday, June 12, 2009

Lakers Show True Colors in Win Over Magic

[Paul Gasol going after Mickael Pietrus after adding an exclamation
dunk at the end of overtime to seal the Laker win]

Last night I watched a good part of the Los Angeles Lakers 99 - 91 overtime win against the Orlando Magic in the NBA Finals.

Within minutes of the final buzzer, one of my close friends called to talk about the game. Now to understand the mindset that he brought to the conversation, you've got to know that Cesar is a die hard Laker fan.

One year as he was serving with me in Mexico, he somehow found a family in a poor dusty village in Mexico that had cable and was able to watch Kobe and Shaq win one of their three championships together.

He lives and dies Lakers. So he was pretty upset when I said I was sick of this team.

Now those are strong words for a guy like me. I grew up with the Lakers. I cried year after year as the Celtics stuck daggers in our hearts, celebrated 33 wins, was in the arena when Magic dished off to Kareem to break Wilt's scoring record, and loved Showtime.

In sports parlance, I bleed Laker purple and gold. But not for this team.

Because they are bad sports. And it was all personified by one instance at the end of the overtime period. With the game effectively over, Laker Pau Gasol went up for a dunk and was fouled from behind by Mickael Pietrus.

Now I know this looked like a horrible foul to most, and the refs called it a flagrant violation. But Gasol was left standing. This was little more than a playground cheapshot. Certainly nowhere near as bad as the hurt former Celtic Kevin McHale or Bill Laimbeer of the Pistons used to regularly put on the Lakers and others.

My struggle comes from the response. With the game won, and the Magic's heart broken on their home court, Gasol went after Pietrus and earned a technical. Essentially for bad sportsmanship.

And this is my problem with this Laker team. For all the talent, ability, and their imminent championship, these guys are poor sports. And nothing disappoints me more in sports than poor winners.

It has been said that you can see the real character of a team displayed in how they respond to losing and adversity.

I think we saw this Laker team's character last night when they won.

Cesar, this is a good team. They will be NBA Champions this year. I just don't like them.

They are poor sports and lousy winners.

[above photo from the L.A.Times]

Comments on "Lakers Show True Colors in Win Over Magic"

 

Blogger James Manning said ... (12:30 PM) : 

as a bulls fan, i have little love for the lakers but my time in los angeles have soften me a bit for them. with that said, i think gasol was right to go after pietrus because it was a flagrant foul. and all his did was huff and puff a little so no harm no foul.

i had more problems with the celtics. they really showed bad sportsmanship against the bulls.

 

Blogger The Sound and the Fury said ... (9:23 AM) : 

Dave has summed this Lakers team up quite well. For the favored team to behave as they have is inexcusable.

 

Blogger Dave Miller said ... (10:46 AM) : 

Brian, you are a breath of fresh air on this. I also posted on Bleacher Report and right now I have almost 50 comments, 99% negative, calling me all sorts of names.

One guy even had his five obscene deleted by the owners of the site, he was so bad.

I just want to say, it's an opinion people.

 

Blogger Left Coast Rebel said ... (2:55 PM) : 

Dave - thanks for visiting the Left Coast Rebel, although I am sure you won't agree with everything that you might find, I hope to see you more. You certainly have an interesting life story and I am glad to become acquainted!
LCR

 

Blogger Z said ... (11:12 AM) : 

James Manning is so right.
And I have never seen the kind of bias exhibited by the refs in the Lakers final games.
Phil Jackson hardly ever blows his cork and shows nothing but good sportsmanship but even HE couldn't take it anymore.
Kobe's face registered the kind of defeatist feeling we had while watching, too. Like "What the.... ? the other team just did that and you didn't call it"
And the commenters? The Lakers would sink an incredible shot and the comments were "What GREAT DEFENSE by the MAGIC" time and time again. We started laughing after a while!

People hate the Lakers. That'll never go away. There is no record of their being unsportsmanlike and Gasol was SO right in that call. You don't find Lakers sprawled all over the floor every time someone nudges them because they've got a game to win, not hysterics that SOMEONE PUSHED ME to illustrate.

Sorry to be so contradictory a commenter at your blog, here for the first time, but this really surprised me.

I've never seen them be poor sports and was amazed at their restraint especially through those last few games. Let's talk Shaq and his opinions....Kobe's restrained himself at whatever Shaq's thrown him (pardon the pun)!

 

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