The NBA blahs, bad news dogs Vick

Bobby Curran
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Friday - June 01, 2007
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I’m not a huge fan of the NBA. Yes, they’re the best basketball players in the world, capable of elegance and grace that demand attention and defy gravity. Perhaps it’s the length of the schedule, the back-to-back games, the sense that players pace themselves - because for all the talent, the games are curiously unaffecting, lacking the passion and urgency of the college game.

This does disappear during the playoffs to some extent, where you actually see players performing like it matters. Of course, you still get the mind-numbing isolations with one huge player backing down on another in the post, but you’ll actually see players diving for loose balls.

This may be the year where the NBA Finals will be better than either Conference Championship.

Speaking of the NBA, I heard a national sports talk show host talking about all the things he doesn’t like about LeBron James. Not a great skilled offensive player, lacks creativity, average shooter, doesn’t make the big shot, will never be in the class of a Jordan or Bryant. Huh? First, James is only 22. He has risen above difficult circumstances to become a fine young man. Find a coach who wouldn’t love to have him. Great attitude, unselfish, terrific rebounder, already a better passer than either Michael or Kobe, and he works hard on his game. When I hear the criticisms about LeBron, it makes me wonder how far down the road we are of style triumphing over substance.

The Rainbow Wahine softball team gave a terrific account of themselves in the post-season, winning the Los Angeles regional and then taking Tennessee to a decisive third game in the Super-Regional. After they were mercy ruled and no-hit by All American Monica Abbott in Game 1, the Saturday performance in Game 2 was nothing short of remarkable. And the core of this team is coming back next year - they should be as good or better in 2008.

The weirdness with Atlanta Falcon QB Michael Vick continues. ESPN reports that a police informant, whom a dog-fighting investigator termed “extremely reliable,” calls Vick a “heavyweight” in dog-fighting circles. Police raided a rural property in Virginia that is owned by Vick on April 25 and seized 66 dogs and equipment that could be associated with dog fighting. A sad note is the police say that if the dogs have been trained to fight, they will have to be destroyed because they’re too aggressive to be pets. Vick puts it on a cousin who was living on the property at the time. Dog fighting is a felony in 48 states. Only Idaho and Wyoming treat it as a misdemeanor.

It could be that Vick’s stay in Atlanta may be near the end.

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