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VIEWPOINT LETTERS

Laker Fans Sure They Have the Final Answer

June 08, 2002

Selvy sinks the shot.

Nelson's shot bounces off the rim.

Balloons rain down on the Forum floor.

West's 63-footer counts for three.

Willis Reed limps out on court and has no impact.

Magic's baby runner falls over Moses.

Rambis ducks the clothesline and lays the ball in.

Henderson doesn't steal Worthy's pass.

Sampson's turnaround is an airball.

Kobe's alley-oop to Shaq caps 15-point fourth-quarter rally.

Horry's three-pointer goes.

Lakers take Game 7 in overtime.

Dreams do come true.

Patrick Murphy

Van Nuys

*

Watching Game 7 against the Kings was one of the most fun and frightening sporting experiences of my life. Knowing that the outcome of the season hinged on every layup, free throw, rebound and field goal had me on the edge of my couch. Game 7 was "Hoosiers," "Rudy" and "The Natural" all rolled up into one. The Laker road win over a very good Sacramento team showed that they can play with as much heart as style.

Ed Espinoza

Long Beach

*

Forget the Phil Jackson critics. The team that was down by 20 points at the end of the first quarter of Game 4 had no business winning Game 7. He transformed the impotent to the sublime. Call him Zen-Master, Guru, Yogi or Savant. I call him Phil--Mr. Jackson if he pleases.

Jerry Namba

Santa Maria

*

In all the years I watched Byron Scott play for the Lakers, I never realized he was a southpaw until I read his quote in today's [June 4] paper: "Phil Jackson is one of the best coaches in the league." Considering an argument can be made that Phil Jackson is one of the best coaches of all time, Scott's comment must certainly be taken as a left-handed compliment.

Joel Rapp

Los Angeles

*

Here is my summary of the demise of the Sacramento Kings:

C laimed to be the better team.

H it only 16 of 30 at the line.

O nly two of 20 three-pointers.

K ept whining about officiating.

E arly vacation again.

D uh!

Jim Costello

Covina

*

Congratulations to the Kings. They may not have won Game 7, but Arco Arena lived up to its reputation of being the loudest arena in the league. Only problem is, I'm not sure if the high decibels were due to the cowbells going clang-clang, or the Kings' shots going clank-clank.

P.J. Gendell

Beverly Hills

*

Nine years ago, when the Lakers traded Sam Perkins for Doug Christie, I thought it was a mistake. Turns out to have been a great move. The Lakers wouldn't have won the Sacramento series without him.

Robert Berger

Venice

*

Let me be the first to congratulate the Lakers for a job well done against Sacramento. But for all this new talk of a "heart of a champion," allow me to humbly pose one suggestion to the L.A. squad: Had you demonstrated even a hint of this so-called winner's heart in January and February (let alone for any four consecutive quarters since), you would have had home-court advantage in the playoffs. This would have made your task the last two weeks considerably easier.

Hale Antico

Pasadena

*

At a time when most of the globe is patting the Kings on the back for their effort against the Lakers and crowning them "soon to be NBA champions," I'd like to offer a more realistic perspective.

The Kings just failed to beat a team that entered the playoffs perhaps arrogantly and sloppily, injured, shooting poorly, and playing defense only in spurts, at least in the beginning. If they cannot emerge victorious with those factors working in their favor, what makes anyone think that they will when the Lakers are at full strength?

Had Kobe Bryant not gotten food poisoning, this series might not have been close. I can't imagine what it would have been like without Mike Bibby.

Kevin Holten

Manhattan Beach

*

I propose that, henceforth, any player who costs his team a victory by committing a totally inexcusable mistake, such as drawing a technical foul in the fourth quarter of a Game 7, be accused of having pulled a Webber.

Burt Prelutsky

North Hills

*

In the aftermath of what was obviously an emotional and intense series, it was simply amazing (but not shocking) to hear players and coaches from both teams continue with their trash-talking.

"They felt it was their time. It was not their time." (Shaquille O'Neal)

"If you want to say they're the better team, you say it, but I'm not." (Rick Adelman)

"I know the Kings deserved to win." (Chris Webber)

"I think it's obvious what happened in Game 6; that's all I have to say." (Adelman)

I remember something I used to tell my players when I coached youth sports: If you lose, you have nothing to say; if you win, you don't have to say anything.

Mark Skurnik

Mission Viejo

*

Bill Plaschke is such a great writer. Doesn't he deserve a plum assignment, like covering the World Cup? Wouldn't Mrs. P. enjoy seeing Japan on the paper's dime? Please do something, anything, to keep Plaschke from writing any more articles on the Lakers and the NBA playoffs. As former Laker Eddie Jones once said, "Some people just don't know anything about basketball."

Everybody knew who Eddie was talking about.

Daniel Leahy

Santa Barbara

*

Well, I guess it's official. The Lakers have now lowered themselves down to the rest of the league. I've been a season-ticket holder for the last three years and have gone to games since 1985 and I have just one thing to say to the Staples Center sound crew: Shut up!

Why am I told, during a poorly played game by some bad recording, to "Make some noise" or "We can't hear you"? Whatever happened to letting the play on the court determine the crowd noise?

Craig Kwasniewski

Santa Monica

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