THE SCOWLEYS: Another fine contribution by David Stern: Encouraging dishonesty
BY JOE COWLEY firstname.lastname@example.org December 8, 2012 1:22AM
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich sent Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green home when the Spurs played the Heat. | Pedro Portal~AP
Updated: January 10, 2013 6:38AM
So what’s the going rate for being honest about your aging stars and making the smart decision to rest them for the good of a deeper playoff run? Well, NBA commissioner David Stern priced it at $250,000, which was what he fined the San Antonio Spurs this past week after a game against the Miami Heat.
When baseball’s Bud Selig all of a sudden looks like the smartest commissioner in the room, that’s when it’s time to re-evaluate the men wielding the power in the four major sports.
Start with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and his dictatorship to feminize the league, and take a quick look behind him, because Stern is closing in.
Stern’s hypocrisy was on full display this week. The schedule his office put together was taxing enough that Spurs coach Gregg Popovich decided weeks ago to use the game in Miami to rest a few of his big-name players. That’s basically the same approach Popovich took last season in the handling of his veteran team.
So what did Stern really accomplish? Well, expect coaches to return to the days of lying about injuries in order to give players a rest. Good job, Stern.
† This NBA season has been a nice reminder that it was never Dwyane Wade’s team. It was LeBron James’ team the minute he stepped foot in South Beach.
† Pau Gasol for Carlos Boozer isn’t happening. Let’s nip that in the bud.
† If the Bulls need an underachieving forward who plays very little defense and still doesn’t understand the NBA game, Derrick Williams is available.
† Andrew Bynum vs. Derrick Rose — who plays first this season? Take the Rose.
† Remember Jimmer Fredette?
That was fun.
Player of the week
Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers: Becoming the fifth player in NBA history to reach 30,000 points in a career cannot be ignored. But please, someone stop the Michael Jordan comparisons. Bryant isn’t even in the 23 area code.
Team of the week
New York Knicks: With Carmelo Anthony in the lineup or, without him in the lineup, it really doesn’t matter. The Knicks rolled through lesser teams such as the Phoenix Suns and Charlotte Bobcats in the last week, but they put an exclamation point on the week with a 20-point win in Miami.
1. Miami Heat. 2. Memphis Grizzlies. 3. New York Knicks.
4. Oklahoma City Thunder. 5. San Antonio Spurs.
18 Three-pointers made by the Knicks against the Heat last week, after the Knicks made 19 in their first meeting on Nov. 2. It was the first time in NBA history that a team made 18-plus three-pointers in two consecutive games against one team.
Key games this week
New York at Brooklyn, 6 p.m. Tuesday: The battle for the Big Apple: Round 2, as the Nets grabbed bragging rights in the first meeting, beating the Knicks 96-89 in overtime. Jay Z vs. Spike Lee.
Los Angeles Lakers at New York, 7 p.m. Thursday: The stars love to play the Garden, and Kobe Bryant is no exception, taking center stage of the basketball universe. Mark him down for at least 40.
Boston at San Antonio, 7:30 p.m. Friday: A whole lot of 30-somethings running up and down the court hoping that Father Time continues to overlook them.