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Abdul-Jabbar's Career Should Come to an End

February 27, 1988

I'm a little irritated at Chick Hearn's coverup job for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. We all realize what a superstar this man was and what a tremendous career he has had, but come on, Chick, he's now playing like he is 40 years old and sometimes 50.

Start counting his turnovers; check how many times his feet leave the floor when rebounding; how many times the ball is stolen from him? I've seen Spud Webb outrebound Jabbar twice in one game. How many times have you seen him get back down court with the rest of the team on defense?

He does fine for his age, but the rest of the NBA is not going to wait for him out of respect. Most of his rebounds are ricochets into his hands. How many times in his career have you seen him "take a charge"? The closest thing to it is when he sticks a hip into an opponent, which is how he gets most of his personals.

The Lakers are awesome with Jabbar, but they are even better with (Mychal) Thompson or (Mike) Smrek in there. When Smrek blows a layup, Chickie reminds us of it for a couple of quarters. But when Kareem messes up, we are hardly reminded without a number of "reasons why."

I admire Kareem greatly. He is truly one of the all-time greats. But as the old saying goes, "All good things must come to an end."

KENNETH WATSON

Carlsbad

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