Watching the game today between Cleveland and LA, it struck me that there is a great divide between a Lakers team that is coddled and one that has to play at the same level and set of rules as the rest of the NBA.
When Kobe actually had to finish a play on the floor or flying off balance and missed the shot, and .... OMG, .... got no foul called. What a travesty! How could that happen? Where, oh where is the fairness in all that is Holy in the glorified Blue and Gold world?
Seeing Kobe's normal pleads for calls going unheeded and the fact that the referees allowed both teams to play the game that used to be the norm in the NBA, was a true, though brief breath of fresh air in the current game of Super Star Suck-up calls and Major League Flops.
Did Kobe get fouled on a few drives and shots? Sure he did! So did James and Shaq and most of the other players of both teams. But what was interesting, was to see what happened to the Lakers when the game was called relatively fairly. In the voice of Jack Nicholson, the Aspen-skiing but absent Staples Center regular: "They couldn't handle the truth!"
Add that to the lackluster play of Bynum (Is he REALLY making that much money??), Gasol (OOOHH, don't hit me, I might mess up my brillo pad hair!) or Artest (You mean, I actually have to play both ends of the court??) or the best flopper this side of Ginobili (Fox), and you have a rare Staples Center loss by the Home Team (excluding the other Home Team, the Clippers).
But maybe the best example of this coddled concept was hearing the Zen-master, Phil the Pill, saying that he wouldn't say that there was a refereeing issue to avoid the $50,000 fee he had to pay in order to say there was a refereeing issue. That was precious!
Would he say his team was outplayed or were outcoached? Of course not! They are the F@cking L.A. Lakers!!
But, maybe, just maybe, it will be a little easier for him and the exalted Lakers to see what the NBA looks like from the other side.
BTW, I am NOT a Laker hater or a Cleveland lover. just a fan of a level NBA playing court.