A ‘Who’s that?’ of broadcasting
Nice to see ESPN had its A Team working Saturday night’s Alamo Bowl telecast. In addition to a, uh, bumper crop of cliches and some early cheerleading for Baylor, Rick Walker and Dave Sims managed to place “Palouse country” in “southwestern Washington.” The comedy of errors didn’t stop there. With Washington State on its way to a 10-3 win, Walker or Sims - who needs accuracy? - referred to Weiser, Idaho, as “Wizer.” Then - did we hear this right? - someone mentioned the Washington State Huskies.
A title for showboating
OK, so the national media doesn’t respect Wazzu. At least Northwesterners have the Sonics. Not so fast.
“If there ever was an example of how showboat behavior cost a team a game,” writes Michael Ventre in the Los Angeles Daily News, “it was Thursday night’s loss by the Sonics to the Lakers. Gary Payton, his team down by six with about 4 minutes to go, passed up a layup to bounce the ball off the backboard to set up a slam by Shawn Kemp. Instead, Kemp missed the dunk. Seattle wound up losing by one point.
“That team will never win a championship unless it matures, and don’t hold your breath on that.”
Adding insult to injury
Before the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory over the Los Angeles Raiders on Dec. 24, Jason Whitlock guaranteed a Chiefs win. The Kansas City Star columnist called the Raiders football’s dumbest team.
Some of their fans are at least as smart. Several who parked at the public library near the L.A. Coliseum returned after the game to find their cars towed.
The fans were lured to the lot by an impostor attendant charging only $5. The man then ran off with the money, and 14 cars were impounded. Owners had to shell out $85.83 each to retrieve their vehicles.
Having their colors done
As chief of marketing and sales for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Jim Kahler is used to hearing wisecracks about his team’s new uniform colors - powder blue, orange and black. Kahler hired a Los Angeles-based design firm to revamp the unies to coincide with the debut of Gund Arena. But the new duds have fizzled.
“The Bulls played as ugly as Cleveland’s new uniforms,” wrote the Chicago Tribune.
According to the Charlotte Observer: ‘It could have been worse. The Hornets could have been forced to wear what the Cavaliers wore Saturday night.”
Ouch. It hasn’t been this bad since the Cavs trotted out the all-orange pumpkin look in the 1980s.
“I’ll admit, it’s been a mixed reaction,” Kahler said.
The last word . . .
“I consider Eastern Washington the biggest win we’ve had this season. Not to be flippant, because a win against Michigan makes the kids feel a very big sense of accomplishment, but it’s so early in the year. Hopefully, this is something that helps us gear up and pushes us along to the next level.”
- Huskies basketball coach Bob Bender, apparently still under the influence of UW’s 65-61 upset of the Wolverines