07 May 2008

Second verse, same as the first

Losing is one thing.

Losing because Derek Fisher plays 300 times better tonight than he ever did for Utah last season,

Losing because two of the Jazz's "stars" can't hit a shot to save their lives,

Losing because the Jazz can't hold the Lakers to under 60% shooting as a team,

Just flat-out irritating.

But I could deal with the loss except for two things.

First, the record needs to be set straight regarding Derek Fisher's time in Utah. Apparently TNT commentators Kevin Harlan and Doug Collins cannot be bothered to do any research.

According to them, Fisher came to Utah, led a resurgence of the team and was the key factor in them getting to the Western Conference Finals last season. Then his daughter got cancer, he asked Jazz owner Larry Miller to be released from his contact so he could live closer to better treatment options for her. When coming back to Utah as a Laker, heartless Jazz fans boo him like the trash they are.

This is a gross misrepresentation of what happened.

The real chain of events are as follows:

Fisher complained about coming to Utah when he was traded here from Golden State. He played horribly while with the Jazz, with the exception of ten combined minutes against Golden State in the second round of the playoffs. He wanted out of Salt Lake.

This sums up his time on the court with the Jazz:

Tragically, his daughter did get eye cancer, and he approached Larry Miller about getting released from his contract with the Jazz so she could get better treatment than was available in Utah.

Here's the problem: Fisher's daughter is receiving treatment in New York City. Los Angeles is closer to New York than Utah is... how?

And besides, Salt Lake City's Hunstman Cancer Institute is a very highly-rated cancer-treatment hospital.

Now he's the starting point guard for the juggernaut Lakers, shooting over 10% better from the 3-point line and generally playing like an All-Star.

Things I cannot prove but strongly believe:

A.) Fisher used his daughter's cancer to get out of Utah.

B.) Fisher was dogging it while playing for the Jazz. He simply didn't care enough to play hard, and his stats showed it. The man was getting the exact same looks in Salt Lake as he is in L.A. A veteran player doesn't suddenly drop 10% off his field-goal percentage and then regain it one season later for no reason.

And Fisher wonders why he was booed in Salt Lake.

The second thing, a 43-16 free-throw disparity in favor of the Lakers, wouldn't bother me as much except for a couple things:

Harlan and Collins spent the entire night telling us how the Jazz play physical and foul a lot, so OF COURSE there's going to be a free-throw disparity.

What they missed is that while the Jazz commit a league-leading 24 fouls per game, they are fouled 23 times per game, which is good for third place, only 0.7 fouls less than league-leading Denver.

In essence, the Jazz don't often give up easy layups on defense, but they take it to the rim on offense, too.

Problem is, tonight, they weren't getting any calls on these drives to the basket. Utah scored 58 points in the paint and shot 16 free throws total. In a game where the Jazz were within eight points of the Lakers with three minutes left in the fourth quarter, that's pretty significant.

Hopefully they will get the whistles in Salt Lake, but I'm not holding my breath.

Oh, and finally, Boozer has these next two games against L.A. to stop me from starting my "Trade Carlos" campaign. Shooting 3-10 from the field and grabbing an astounding eight rebounds isn't doing much to stop me, buddy.


Matty Gibb said...

Go Derek, Go!

superman jock said...

Fisher really stunk. now he is good with the Lakers. hmm..........

Filbert Karo said...

Yeah, go Fisher!

But Kevin Harlan is so dang annoying on NBA 2K8.

Filbert Karo said...

Carlos Boozer is terrible