Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

JERRY CROWE

Lakers-Heat won't be under the tree this year

July 26, 2007|JERRY CROWE

Text messages from press row ...

FOR THE first time since Shaquille O'Neal was traded away, the Lakers will not play the Miami Heat on Christmas this year, the Miami Herald reports. ...

Neither the Lakers nor the NBA would confirm or deny the report, seemingly guarding the schedule secret more vigorously than the publisher tried to protect the ending of the new Harry Potter book.

A somber David Stern looked ashen while discussing allegedly on-the-take referee Tim Donaghy during his news conference in New York this week. ...

Scandals will do that to you. ...

UCLA receivers coach Eric Scott has some explaining to do. ...

An estimated 40,000 Americans actively take part in illegal dogfighting, according to a report in Newsweek, so if Michael Vick truly is involved in the barbaric practice, as an indictment charges, he is sadly only one of many. ...

Arguing that it wasn't all that unusual for Barry Bonds' power to improve so dramatically in the latter stages of his career, Chris Rock jokingly told Bob Costas this week, "I got a lot funnier in my 30s. You can look at old tape of me on 'Saturday Night Live.' I wasn't that funny. Later on, I figured something out." ...

Craig Biggio, whose grand slam helped the Houston Astros to a victory over the Dodgers only hours after he announced he was retiring at season's end, obviously believes in the showbiz axiom, leave them wanting more. ...

Bay Area-bred Lakers assistant Kurt Rambis might have had a better chance of landing the Sacramento Kings' coaching job if the team's owners were actually based in Northern California, but Las Vegas-based Joe and Gavin Maloof instead tabbed former Nevada Las Vegas and Inglewood High star Reggie Theus. ...

The Angels, who provided the opposition when Hank Aaron hit the last of his 755 home runs in 1976, also were there when Cal Ripken Jr. broke Lou Gehrig's consecutive-games record Sept. 6, 1995, at Baltimore. ...

Ripken, who with Tony Gwynn will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Sunday, went two for four with a home run in a 4-2 Orioles victory. ...

Explaining why he donated his Heisman Trophy to his alma mater, Santa Ana Mater Dei High, former Notre Dame quarterback John Huarte told the Sporting News, "Maybe it can plant a seed, inspire someone to do something they thought wasn't possible." ...

Only once in 25 years of playing at the Rose Bowl has UCLA drawn a crowd of at least 85,000 for a nonconference game -- 88,044 saw UCLA defeat Michigan in 2000 -- but the Bruins hope to do it again Oct. 6 when they play Notre Dame. ...

UCLA and USC start practice Aug. 6 and open their seasons Sept. 1, UCLA at Stanford and USC against Idaho at the Coliseum. ...

Four-time Nextel Cup champion Jeff Gordon could win for the fifth time at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday in the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard, but even if he does he still won't be identified with the famed track in the same way as four-time Indy 500 winners A.J. Foyt, Rick Mears and Al Unser. ...

On the bright side for the free-falling Sparks, light-packing Coach Michael Cooper probably won't be leaving for the NBA any time soon. ...

Nervous X Games organizers breathed a sigh of relief last August when Travis Pastrana successfully executed a double back flip on his motorcycle in front of a captivated Staples Center audience, providing a signature moment in the 12-year history of the action-sports showcase. ...

Privately, they hoped, the death-defying trick would be retired.

Now comes word of an imitator, which is of little comfort but no big surprise to X Games General Manager Chris Stiepock, who notes, "The way progression works in these sports, riders can rarely own tricks all their own for very long -- the copycats follow pretty quickly -- and sure enough, this year's best-trick competition will see a rider from Minnesota attempt the same trick." ...

The daredevil's name is Scott Murray, and a cautiously optimistic Stiepock says, "He's practiced it a ton and landed it on dirt, so he should be fine." ...

X Games 13 starts Thursday.

jerome.crowe@latimes.com

T.J. Simers is on vacation.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|