Is anyone really surprised that despite costing the Knicks $11.6 million and dragging the franchise through a humiliating court procedure, Isiah Thomas is still the coach and general manager of Big Apple basketball?
Money-wise, this is about the fourth-worst deal Zeke has made since Knicks CEO James Dolan brought him aboard in Metropolis. At least Anucha Browne Sanders is out of the building now – Dolan still has to look at Stephon Marbury and Jerome James every day while paying them their millions.
Thomas is no better at running a basketball team than he is at employee relations. Anywhere else, either sin would have cost him his job.
IF AT FIRST …
How is this for good omens? As ESPN pointed out, the Diamondbacks are 3-0 in the three postseason series in which they won the first game (the 2001 NLDS vs. St. Louis, the 2001 NLCS vs. Atlanta and the 2001 World Series vs. the Yankees), and winless (0-2) in the series that they lost Game 1 (1999 NLDS vs. the Mets and 2002 NLDS vs. St. Louis).
And beating the Cubs 3-1 Wednesday, Arizona has now allowed a grand total of three runs in its four Game 1 wins.
MY DINNERS WITH ANDREI
The Jazz know they have an unhappy camper in Andrei Kirilenko, so the team has recruited ex-Sun and ex-Jazz guard Jeff Hornacek as a special assistant coach – working almost exclusively with the disgruntled Russian.
The Hornaceks still live in the Valley, but the Deseret Morning News reports Jeff will fly to Salt Lake City or wherever the Jazz are on the road two to three times a week to work with Kirilenko’s shooting and fragile mental state.
“I love to work with him,” Kirilenko said. “He’s a great guy. He was one of the best shooters in the NBA. You know, working with him, I feel good.”
If Horny can keep the guy from crying after games, it will be a step forward.
Last week: 1-2, but happily watched the Cards prove me wrong with another strong performance at home. Overall: 8-4, not what I was hoping for, but we’ll take it.
• ASU 35, Washington State 28: This one is a real tough call. After losing in Tucson last week, Washington State has to have this one or its season is shot. The Devils have Washington next week but can’t afford to look ahead. But Wazoo is about to find out who has the best football team in Arizona.
• Arizona 26, Oregon State 21: The Wildcats figured out their way to the end zone last week, and the Beavers looked horrible at home against UCLA last week. Both teams are going to lose next week (Arizona has USC, Oregon State gets Cal), so this one is huge.
• Cardinals 24, Rams 10: Pleasantly, our 5-11 prediction is on the ropes, especially if the Big Red finally breaks through on the road. The winless Rams don’t have Steven Jackson, don’t have Marc Bulger and don’t have much else. If the Cards are really intent on making noise, this is a game they must win convincingly.
• Watching the first postseason on TBS is a lot like watching Braves games during the regular season – a constant fight to stay awake.
One big thumbs up goes to the commercials promoting impressionist Frank Caliendo’s new TBS show. We had to see them 100 times, but Frank’s Al Pacino and Jack Nicholson takeoffs are top drawer.
• Hey, L.A. Galaxy, how is that whole David Beckham thing working out for you? Even the NHL is laughing at you.
• Golden State has installed Stephen Jackson as one of its three captains.
Are you kidding me?
This the same guy who fired a gun outside a strip club (and pled guilty this summer) who was in the middle of the Ron Artest debacle in Indiana and who will start the season serving a seven-game suspension for his behavior in the playoffs.
I know Don Nelson was peeved that he didn’t get a big raise. But this is no way to retaliate.