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T.J. SIMERS

Our heroes should hear only positive thoughts

May 30, 2008|T.J. SIMERS

These are troubling times for journalism.

If things weren't bad enough, now we all live in fear of being cussed out by Vanessa Bryant after every Laker game.

And worse yet. To date she's only directed obscenities toward bloggers, like we need another reminder that no one pays attention to newspapers anymore.

Some folks were shocked that Vanessa would use such vulgar language around her two children, but come on, the blogger, working as a freelancer on behalf of ESPN, referred to her as a "soccer mom."

Last year Vanessa went to the four-letter words, screaming at one of the Kamenetzky brothers, who blogs about the Lakers for The Times, because he looked at one of her kids while waiting for the Lakers' locker room to be opened after a game.

At the time I just took it for granted she was frustrated like everyone else -- and couldn't tell the difference between the Kamenetzky brothers.

Whatever the reason, obviously she's struggling to become adjusted to this new age of media like everyone else, but on a positive note, at least she's not reading Dwyre.

Ask any USC fan what it was like to have a Domer overseeing USC newspaper coverage the last couple of decades. That's like assigning Joey Crawford to every Spurs game.

I wouldn't be surprised to learn when they complete the investigation, it was Dwyre who killed the whole newspaper industry with his negativity.

He writes a lot about horse racing, boxing and tennis, and it makes you wonder -- now those sports are dying too.

Here we are, the Lakers about ready to go to the NBA Finals, and Dwyre is writing in the newspaper the refs should have called a foul on our Lakers. Even the refs are pulling for the Lakers, but not Dwyre.

It was a short column, so it wasn't all bad, but is it really necessary to take the shine off of anything our heroes are doing these days? Can you imagine anyone doing such a thing?

The Times is the Lakers' hometown newspaper, and as Plaschke pointed out last week, the millionaires who play for the Lakers are a gift to Los Angeles, and he wouldn't write such a thing unless he really believed it.

And even if he does change his mind later should they lose to Boston, the important thing is he's behind our guys now when we all love them the most.

Everyone is so giddy happy over the Lakers, it's like a city full of Vic the Bricks. You bounce a ball, shoot as well as the Lakers, win as many games as they have, and there's no limit to how much people are going to adore you.

Why fight it?

As you know, when you read different writers it's just a matter of how they look at things. Vladimir Radmanovic opened Thursday night's game missing a layup, which Dwyre would've harped on, but it was obvious to Page 2 he was just setting Pau Gasol up for the follow, and the dramatic dunk.

And when Kobe Bryant went up to shoot later, changing his mind at the last second only to pass it to the other team, right away Page 2 knew that guy had no business being there.

Just think if Dwyre had been here, doing a running commentary for The Times' website when the Lakers fell behind by 17, and Vanessa had gone online. You know how sarcastic Dwyre can be, and is that really necessary?

Besides, everyone in the building knew our heroes were going to come back -- just their way of making the game more exciting. And so we win, we win -- we don't have to go back to San Antonio.

One more series to go, so many more positive stories to write, and I'm pretty sure there's a horse race somewhere that Dwyre can cover. Meanwhile, Plaschke and I will be there for the guys -- just like we have been since the start of the season.

We won't be blogging, of course, so as to not upset Vanessa, which might very well bother you know who.

It's just one of those sacrifices your morning newspaper reporters are making for the good of the Lakers.

BRYANT TOLD the crowd, "I'm just happy for our guys, for the city, and we ain't done yet." Go ahead, English teachers, try and explain to your pupils today that Bryant isn't correct.

TIM DONAGHY would've found a way to stop it. The Lakers were up by five, the Spurs surrendering, but instead of dribbling out the clock, Sasha Vujacic hit a three-pointer to make the final score 100-92.

The Lakers were a 7 1/2 -point favorite in Las Vegas, those taking the Spurs a lock to win until Vujacic took that final shot.

THE SPORTS Business Journal named Tim Leiweke Sports Executive of the Year at an awards dinner in New York on Thursday, voters putting great stock into the fact that after Leiweke brought Beckham to this country a year ago, Beckham was able to score a goal.

THEY SHOVED a USA Today under my hotel room door in San Antonio, and I took it as a sign from above. The sports headline read: "HGH detection faces new hurdle."

It reminded me I need to touch base with Gary Matthews.

YOU HAVE to be there, of course, and some tickets do remain for "Scully & Wooden for the Kids," but with so many folks asking for a DVD, FSN Prime Ticket is the latest to step forward and throw its collective weight behind the event.

FSN has offered to televise the June 13th event in the Nokia Theatre live with no commercial breaks -- save for the one-minute per half-hour contractual cable breaks that they must take.

FSN sent a camera crew to both hospitals to document visits by Jeff Kent and the Laker Girls, the camera crew obviously going from one extreme to the other.

As a result of FSN's generosity, Ticketmaster has agreed to have a bank of operators on duty that night and will post a number on the TV screen for anyone wishing to make a donation to Childrens Hospital Los Angeles and Mattel Children's Hospital at UCLA.

One thing to definitely keep in mind, TV adds at least 10 pounds to how the moderator appears.

--

T.J. Simers can be reached at

t.j.simers@latimes.com.

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