The Thunderdome: Top 5 Reasons I Hate the Los Angeles Lakers
I was lying in bed last night in a truly ideal situation. The first day of work at my new job, a cool air conditioned house, and a 10 hour shift had just been completed that left me more exhausted than Rasheed Wallace during the regular season. All the pieces were in place for a good night’s sleep: exhausted, body aching, great dinner a few hours earlier, Breath Right strip on my nose. But laying there I couldn’t do it. No matter how hard I tried sleep just wasn’t coming. Then, it hit me. The anticipation and hatred that I have developed for the Lakers is so great that it was beginning to affect my sleeping patterns. Each time I would be close to achieving slumber, an image of Phil Jackson giving some stupid quote to a local paper about how Kevin Garnett throws elbows or sitting on a 6 inch cushion on the Lakers bench or would pop into my head. Like hes the only one with back problems!
On the eve of the most anticipated Finals rematch of our generation it would not do justice to simply wait until Game 1.
So without further ado, unscripted and unrehearsed, I give you the top 5 reasons why I HATE the Los Angeles Lakers:
5.) I hate Derek Fisher
Fisher has always bothered me on this Lakers team. Save his untimely chucking or his vomit inducing left handed release, I just never understood his appeal. Every year it seems to be the same thing with Fish. After a truly morbid regular season which has me wondering if Brian Shaw wouldn’t be a better fit at Lakers point guard, he starts hitting some ill-advised 31 foot jumpers with 5 hands in his face and all of a sudden all is forgiven in LA. Fisher is the Rasheed Wallace of the Los Angeles Lakers with one vivid difference: Fisher tries. While Rasheed mails in entire seasons in preparation for the playoffs, Fisher really is that bad. He is so bad that he can play his heart out for 82 games, and produce literally ZERO defining moments. He is the NBA’s version of Hugo on LOST in that hes in almost every game, yet has zero natural talent or positive impact on the game/episode. Yet EVERY year Lakers fans forgive him. I hate that.
4.) I hate everything about Pau Gasol
Watch Pau Gasol’s facial expressions during an NBA playoff basketball game and you would immediately think that he is going back and forth between biting into a really really sour pickle and having a 2 and a half hour bowel movement.
Vlade Divac brought flopping and European Theatrics to a new level in the 1990’s with Charlotte and Sacramento, but Pau has certainly kept this tradition alive. The thing that I find so humorous is that Lakers fans can’t seem to stop clamoring about how “tough” Pau has gotten since 2008. Every interview I listen to has me desperately wanting to believe that Pau isn’t soft anywhere, but the evidence simply leads me to the contrary. Look for Kevin Garnett to own Pau in every physical way possible over the next 2 weeks and drastically limit his production. The worst part is Pau will take it all in stride and accept the overall outcome. I hate that.
3.) I hate The Lakers bench
Never in my life have I encountered a bench comprised of so many lackluster players on a championship contending team. I hate how Sasha Vujacic has hair that puts the lead singer of any mid major punk rock band to shame. I hate the way Luke Walton has made tens of millions of dollars sitting on the bench for an NBA team because his daddy was real good. I HATE everything about the way Jordan Farmar plays the game of basket. I hate his handle. I hate his dumbo sized ears, and I hate that every Lakers fan loves him because he went to UCLA. I hate UCLA. I hate how Lakers fans love Shannon Brown. I hate how terms such as “explosive” and “can jump out of the gym” translate to NBA success. I hate that Lakers fans actually believe this. I HATE Adam Morrison. When you have the porn star mustache and are the most recognizable player in college basketball history, should you be buried on the bench of an NBA team your 3rd year in the league? The scary thing is Morrison seems to be perfectly ok with this level of mediocrity. I hate that.
2.) I hate Andrew Bynum
Jeff Van Gundy put it perfectly last week when uttering the phrase “The NBA, where soft happens.” No single person encompasses everything that is wrong with the Los Angeles Lakers, the city of LA, and sports fans in general in California then Bynum. Since being drafted 5 seasons ago Bynum has missed a staggering 168 total basketball games at the age of 22. To make matters worse, he has played more than 65 games in only 1 of his first 5 NBA seasons. All this being said Bynum seems to always be front line story on ESPN.com. Some of my favorite headlines from the last week and the literal translations:
1.) “Bynum sits out practice with Lakers, status uncertain for Suns series”
Translation: Phil Jackson has no desire to play Bynum due to his 7th knee injury in 4 years. However due to the fact that he is the de facto center of the future plans in LA and Kareem Freakin Abdul Jabbar has been hired just to work with him the last 2 years……I have to try to start him anyway
2.) “Bynum to have knee drained”
Translation: Although the Lakers staff knows nothing will ever help Bynum’s knee, at least having the knee drained makes it seem like they’re being proactive. Hey, who knows it may have some negative affects and then they could sit him all together and start Lamar Odom.
3.) “Bynum shows no improvement after having knee drained”
Translation: Bynum is too soft for modern medicine
Now in my book softness has its place. Cotton balls, Mashed Potatoes, Maine Coon Cats, hell even John Grue(he’s soooooo soft) but at this point Bynum is in a league of his own. That being said every Lakers fan I talk to always clamors about his “potential” and how “hes young” and still could be “as good as Shaq” when the smoke clears. Its fools blind optimism. I hate that.
1.) I HATE each and every one of the Lakers fans
Ironically enough my main beef with the Lakers isn’t even with any particular player, but simply the mongrel race that comprises their fan hood. Lakers fans are some of the point blank least savvy basketball minds I have ever talked to. Believe me, nobody was more surprised than me with their rich history, but they just don’t know nearly enough about their team. Maybe it’s because they show up 30-45 late to every home playoff game, regardless of importance. Can you actually picture this, I read an article earlier this year by a local beat writer in LA which stated that Staples has not been over 85% full for the tipoff of a game this decade. DECADE. Is that even fathomable?
I wouldn’t have believed any of it myself until I had the opportunity to see the LA fans first hand myself during a Western Conference FINALS game against the San Antonio Spurs. Not only was the place as empty as I described enough but the energy in the place is eerily low. It’s kind of like the football games that were at everybody’s high school. Everybody goes on Friday nights but you can tell it’s not the priority of a majority of the fans in attendance to watch the game. Be it talking to that really cute girl whos a friend of a friend or coordinating party plans for that evening, the game itself was never really our number one concern in HS…right?
A perfect example of this would be the second half of the game where I moved about 12 rows behind the Lakers bench. Here I encountered a well dressed man in his early 70’s who spent the 3rd and 4th quarter of a hotly contested game 4 trying to sell me on his oil company and get me into being a sales rep for him back on the East Coast. It was not until he presented me his wife, who evidently had taken at least a dozen botox needles to the face, that I fully came to grips with the fact these people had no interest in the game of basketball.
Maybe it’s the fact that LA was spoiled with Magic in the 80’s and Kobe and Shaq’s 3peat that they simply don’t care anymore. Maybe they never did. But I do know this, what I saw in LA that night, from the lackluster “Teenage Wasteland” theme music during warm-ups to the intermediate golf claps throughout the arena for 4 quarters of the biggest game of the Lakers season, is that the fans are a disgrace. Above all else….I HATE that.
In 2 weeks time another banner will be hung by Boston. You know it, I know it. Hell, I think even Phil would probably admit it. Boston’s 3 year window will have closed and Lakers fans will start blindly speculating towards the future. They can do this because it’s the world they live in. The delusional world of Hollywood, botox, indifference, and softness that they have created for themselves.
In the meantime well be celebrating in Boston. Beat LA and I’ll see you at the parade……….