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JERRY CROWE

It's not flag day when it comes to Lakers

Text messages from press row …

May 09, 2011|Jerry Crowe
  • A fan displays their Lakers flag on the window of their car.
A fan displays their Lakers flag on the window of their car. (Los Angeles Times )

Anyone still flying a Lakers flag after Sunday's debacle in Dallas should consider lowering it to half staff. …

Losing is one thing. …

Ditching your dignity is another. …

Boneheaded, thuggish moves by Lamar Odom and especially chest-baring WWE wannabe Andrew Bynum detracted from the brilliance of Jason Terry and the Dallas Mavericks. …

"It was," ABC's Hubie Brown noted, "a beautiful display of teamwork, chemistry and great shooting." …

Brown, of course, was not talking about the Lakers. …

Kobe Bryant & Co. also failed to send Phil Jackson out on a high note in 2004, when they were plowed under by Chauncey Billups and the Detroit Pistons in the NBA Finals. …

They won't get a third chance. …

Maybe we shouldn't be so surprised: Six times under Jackson the Lakers ended the season with playoff defeats, losing those games by an average of 26 points. …

Bryant turns 33 before next season, still younger than Michael Jordan when he won his last two championship rings. …

The last four major leaguers to string together 30-game hitting streaks Andre Ethier and, before him, Willy Taveras, Moises Alou and Ryan Zimmerman — all fell short of 31. …

The most recent to push through was second baseman Chase Utley of the Philadelphia Phillies, the former UCLA and Long Beach Poly High star whose 35-game run in 2006 was the longest by a strictly left-handed better in the last 66 years. …

While Joe DiMaggio batted .408 during his 56-game hitting streak, reader Steve Fitzmaurice of Lomita emails to remind that Ted Williams batted .412 over the same stretch. …

Angels rookie Mark Trumbo is on pace to hit 30 home runs, which would put him in rare company. …

A list of major leaguers who've hit as many as 30 homers as rookies includes one Dodger (former catcher Mike Piazza) and one Angel (former outfielder Tim Salmon). …

Both did it in 1993. …                 

Sports Illustrated's Peter King, checking in five years later to hand out grades to the top 10 picks in the NFL draft Class of 2006, gives No. 2 pick Reggie Bush a C-minus, No. 3 pick Vince Young a D and No. 10 pick Matt Leinart an F. …

Mario Williams, a controversial top pick, gets a B-plus. …

Leinart is a backup for a different team than the one that drafted him, Young is on his way out in Tennessee and Bush might be moving on after the New Orleans Saints drafted Mark Ingram. …

So much for Shane Mosley's vow that his fight with Manny Pacquiao would get "very interesting, very quick." …

It never did. …

Noting that St. John's had signed a junior college basketball player named God's Gift Achiuwa, Brad Dickson of the Omaha World-Herald writes, "I don't know why he had to bring his game to a junior college first, but I'm pretty sure we can rule out lack of confidence." …

It seems like every time the Galaxy scores, it was Landon Donovan who found the back of the net. …

When John McEnroe won his first 42 matches in 1984, a record Novak Djokovic may challenge, he didn't lose until Ivan Lendl upset him in the French Open final in early June. …

McEnroe, who squandered a two-sets-to-love lead, later described it as the most haunting loss of his career. …

After successfully predicting that the Memphis Grizzlies would oust the San Antonio Spurs and the Mavericks would dump the Lakers, Charles Barkley should try his luck in Las Vegas. …

Oh, wait. …                                                                                      

U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell, on the death of Seve Ballesteros: "Apparently, God needed a short-game lesson." …

"Ernie," Mitch Albom's new play, celebrates the life of the late Detroit Tigers announcer Ernie Harwell. …

Fifty years ago Monday, Jim Gentile hit grand slams in consecutive at-bats for the Baltimore Orioles. …

Gentile would eventually hit five in 1961, matching a major league record later broken by Don Mattingly, who hit six grand slams in 1987 and none in any other year. …

Reader Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., noting that May is National Zombie Awareness Month, emails to suggest, "The Lakers certainly did their part on Sunday."

jerome.crowe@latimes.com

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