AEG chief Tim Leiweke sits next to Patrick Soon-Shiong at Los Angeles City… (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles…)
As goes Tim Leiweke, hopefully the same holds true for a downtown football stadium. After all, shoehorning a football stadium into a postage-stamp-sized piece of land, where parking comes at an expensive premium and public transportation is woefully poor sounds like a great idea to me. Couple that with the prospect of a winter's Sunday when a home football game collides with any of Staples' three tenants, a Nokia concert, L.A. Live diners, conventioneers and everyday hotel traffic. What could go wrong?
When Tim Leiweke first started running the Kings he was not-so-affectionately called Tim Lies-Weekly by my brother and I and numerous Kings fans for his failure to improve the team or sign big-name players. But then a funny thing happened and we actually won a Stanley Cup and were able to keep the team together for the future. Add to that all of his work with L.A. Live, the Galaxy and his (futile) attempt to bring the NFL back to town and I'm actually going to miss the big lug. And that's no lie!
Leaders of the Pac
I was wondering whether all of the Ben Howland haters could take a couple of weeks off and allow the Bruins to play out their season. Howland has done a pretty good job coaching a very young, depleted team (players who jumped to the pros or left the program), and won the Pac-12 championship. No, this team does not resemble the 1969 Bruins, but Howland continues to work as hard as any coach, stresses defense and recruits the best players in high school. Take a deep breath and enjoy the ride.
Ralph S. Brax
I can tell everyone why no one ever showed up for the Pac-12 (or Pac-10) tournament. For several years, my friend and I tried to get tickets by going through Ticketmaster and the Staples Center box office. Every year, all they had available were the seats upstairs. So we wound up having to go to a ticket reseller, paying $100 each to sit in the lower bowl, looking around at the thousands of empty seats around us that we were told were not available. Maybe if the Pac-12 and Fox and Staples Center made those thousands of tickets they give away to all of their sponsors, which are never used, available to the fans, maybe more us would show up, buying $10 beers and $8 hot dogs. Or better yet, stop the pretending, find a local TV studio, close it to the public, and have the games there.
In the running
Bill Plaschke's loving, thoughtful "Run-On Sentiments" column about a 77-year-old marathoner soon to run his 60th race while caring for his MS-afflicted wife is a great love story. Perhaps with films and TV increasingly "starring" violence, perversion, profanity, murder and hate, a perceptive producer will sense the uniqueness of this sports/love story and ... yeah, right!
I was glad the Orlando Magic's Hack-a-Howard tactic tanked, and Superman Dwight seems to now be finding his way as a Laker. However, the real super man of your March 13 edition is 77-year old devoted husband and marathoner John Creel, who wins the run of his life daily by caring for his ailing wife. Men of quiet dignity are not often profiled in the sports section. Thank you for this most inspiring story.
Sprain is in the air
Translating Kobe's injury reports:
Out for the season: back in three weeks.
Out 4-6 weeks: misses 4-6 games.
Game-time decision: plays and scores 40.
If Kobe Bryant received a nickel for every non-called foul, he would be the richest player in the NBA.
Now that it appears that the Lakers will be a playoff team that could do some damage, we can only hope that Kobe Bryant doesn't herniate a body part from carrying the rest of the team on his back.
I predict that the Lakers will make the playoffs but Kobe Bryant will miss the playoffs due to TMJ injury caused by jutting his jaw in the playoff-clinching last game of the season.
Improbable, unimaginable, doubtful, slim, farfetched, dubious, unlikely, exiguous, meager, slight, abortive, forlorn, imperceptible, desolate, wretched, and highly not likely: What are the Lakers chances of making the playoffs without a healthy Kobe Bryant? Correct!
Rancho Palos Verdes
Wow! To Mike Miller, who wrote last week about excessive Jerry Buss coverage: If you are worried about world peace, global warming, or whatever Dennis Rodman is up to, leave the late, great Jerry Buss to rest in peace. You certainly have negativity issues. Get some help, dude.
I'm looking forward to the Angels and Dodgers this year, especially after all the drama with the Lakers. Arte Moreno and Magic Johnson don't have sons Jim Buss' age do they?
Russ W. Bill
So Diane Pucin felt it necessary to inform us last week that Maria Sharapova would be playing in the desert.