Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

The Second Half

January 27, 2008|Mark Heisler

QUOTAGE

GOOD CAREER DECISION

Sacramento point guard Beno Udrih, above, who's averaging 13 points and making 42% of his three-pointers, on almost becoming a Clipper:

"I think my agent talked to them but they couldn't sign me right away because they had 15 players on their roster. They said maybe in 14 days, but I didn't want to wait that long. I just wanted to go right away . . . so I went to the Kings."

SHUT-INS

Golden State's Al Harrington, on the aftermath of last week's home loss to the Timberwolves:

"Nobody left their house. Guys didn't want to show their face yesterday."

WHO'S DAVID HARRISON AGAIN?

Indiana backup center David Harrison, on being suspended after his third positive test for marijuana:

"I don't understand how they have a right to look into our lives on any level besides performance-enhancing drugs. It's not a rule made by government and it's not a rule made by God."

FORTUNATELY, THERE'S ODEN

Greg Oden, the Portland center who's sitting out the season after knee surgery:

"Before I start running, I have to lose some weight. I'm pretty big. Nobody can really see, but this shirt is half a hot dog away from busting."

--

THE TIMES' RANKINGS

RANKINGS, COMMENTS (WITH LAST WEEK'S RANK)

I GIVE UP SORTING THESE TEAMS OUT

1. (tie) BOSTON (34-7)

Forget record: Just had to come from five down in last 1:51 vs. Minnesota. (1)

1. (tie) NEW ORLEANS (31-12)

Uh, this could be for real: Just blew out Spurs in San Antonio. (6)

1. (tie) PHOENIX (31-13)

When they're not up, they're really not up: Just lost second to Minnesota. (2)

1. (tie) DETROIT (31-13)

If Afflalo gets his shot down, he'll play a long time, but he's at 17% on three-pointers. (4)

1. (tie) DALLAS (29-13)

Nowitzki, career 38% shooter on threes, was at 30% on Jan. 1, 38% since. (3)

1. (tie) SAN ANTONIO (28-14)

Remember all the questions about their age and athleticism? They're back. (5)

WELL, NOT ALL THESE TEAMS

7. LAKERS (27-14)

Deja Lamar: Try putting more in scoring column, less in rest of stat sheet. (7)

8. GOLDEN STATE (26-18)

Tough conference if Baron Davis can get left off All-Star squad. (8)

9. UTAH (25-18)

Tough conference if there's even a question Williams is an All-Star. (12)

10. DENVER (26-16)

Steve Blake didn't even have a good season there and they still miss him. (10)

11. PORTLAND (25-18)

Precocious as their kids are, 3-5 since 17-1 run ended, seeking real level. (9)

12. CLEVELAND (23-19)

On 11-2 run until they let Suns come from 18 down before going on road. (13)

13. ORLANDO (27-18)

Now Hedo: In eighth season, Turkoglu, who has 11.2 career average, at 19. (11)

14. WASHINGTON (23-18)

Gave up 102 a game before Dec. 1 as old high-scoring Wizards, 94 since. (14)

15. HOUSTON (24-19)

Went 4-0 with Tracy McGrady back, as long as either development lasts. (15)

16. TORONTO (24-19)

Calderon, who was T.J. Ford's backup, has shot at All-Star team. (16)

EAST CONTENDERS, WEST REBUILDING PROGRAMS

17. ATLANTA (18-21)

Taking on water: 6-12 on road with three left on West trip. (17)

18. NEW JERSEY (18-25)

Dive, dive, dive: Just lost seven in row, giving up 113 a game. (18)

19. SACRAMENTO (18-24)

Losses to Clippers, Jazz may settle question of whether to trade Bibby. (19)

20. INDIANA (19-26)

Maybe East isn't all the way back: No. 8 team is on 34-win pace. (20)

21. MILWAUKEE (17-27)

Krystkowiak said he'd improve defense, took them from No. 27 to No. 21. (21)

22. CHICAGO (17-25)

Deng, Gordon out with injuries. Just so happens both are in contract years. (22)

23. PHILADELPHIA (17-28)

Larry Brown says he won't take Cheeks' job, but somebody will. (24)

24. CHARLOTTE (17-27)

2-13 on road before beating Bulls, but 10 of next 14 are out there too. (23)

25. MEMPHIS (13-31)

Rudy Gay, untapped potential until now, goes from 11 a game to 19. (27)

FOULED UP BEYOND ALL RECOGNITION

26. CLIPPERS (13-27)

Who'd think they'd become a joke again? Oh yeah, everyone. (26)

27. NEW YORK (14-28)

Same old: Spying accusations, roughing up customers, barring press. (25)

28. MINNESOTA (7-35)

Huh? Telfair averages 15 as they beat Warriors, Suns and, almost, Celtics.(30)

29. SEATTLE (9-34)

Still 0-for-January, losing all 12 11 as veterans grumble about Carlesimo. (28)

30. MIAMI (9-33)

Biggest bust in NBA history? (29)

--

LOOKING AHEAD

If the last few seasons were hard for local fans, think what the Lakers' decline meant for ABC.

Let's take a survey of the NBA presence in the biggest markets:

New York: Don't ask.

Chicago: We're OK there -- no, wait.

Los Angeles: We'd better show the Lakers as much as we can while they're still there.

Facing oblivion before the season, the Lakers nonetheless got ABC's featured slots, playing Phoenix in the network's opener (ABC thinks the season starts on Christmas), and facing Cleveland today with the NFL off for a week.

Happily for ABC and local fans, the Lakers no longer seem to be facing extinction and could be looking at a brilliant tomorrow (things change fast around here).

That, of course, assumes nothing goes too wrong before Andrew Bynum's projected return in mid-March (things change fast around here).

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|