A day after visiting Joe Arpaio’s Tent City and becoming a member of the sheriff’s posse, Shaquille O’Neal had no comment following Friday’s season-low eight-point performance in an embarrassing Miami Heat loss to the Suns.
O’Neal obviously understands his right to remain silent.
SO SUE ME
I wonder if Danny Fortson’s lawsuit against Suns chairman Jerry Colangelo and a sports writer — for an article in which Colangelo called the veteran NBA player "a thug" — was buoyed when Fortson likened NBA vice president Stu Jackson to a gangster after another in a long list of fines from the league.
The defense rests — giggling.
BRING THE NOISE
Acting on commissioner David Stern’s suggestion that NBA teams — a study in sensory overload — need to tone it down a bit, Dallas owner Mark Cuban ordered all the music eliminated for the Dec. 30 home game with Golden State.
Cuban said he liked the quieter game, but fans who responded via e-mail voted thumbs down by a 10-to-1 margin. Oh yeah, and the Mavericks lost by two points.
Expect Cuban to attempt to buy the old "Spinal Tap" amplifier — you know, the one that goes to 11.
• If you’re still keeping score at home — and if you are, bless you for that cast-iron stomach — that’s 13 straight losses to a ranked opponent for coach Rob Evans and his Sun Devils and two more last-minute losses added to a list that is already too long to keep count.
• I still love hearing Keith Jackson call a college football game, but all the mistakes are making it harder and harder. Dan Fouts covered as best as he can at the Rose Bowl, but I hope the whispers that Jackson has decided to retire — again — are true before we all forget how good he once was.
• The team that winds up with Ron Artest will have a good shot at going deep in the playoffs — and just as good a chance of imploding from within.
• Now we know why the Coyotes haven’t pulled the trigger on that much-needed deal for a legitimate No. 1 center — the ownership is too busy deciding how to go forward to sign off on any expenditures.
• Give the Carolina Panthers credit for doing what was next to impossible this season — rendering Tiki Barber of the Giants a nonfactor. Eli Manning was horrible (three interceptions, a fourth called back by a penalty), but the lack of a running game was the key.
• Pitcher Shawn Estes signed a one-year deal with San Diego this week and has been with the Giants, Rockies, Diamondbacks and now Padres since 2001. I’m checking to see if there’s some sort of division rule that the Dodgers have to take their turn with this guy next year.