SHAQ HAS THE UPPER HAND NOW.Byline: KEVIN MODESTI
Oh, to have been a fly on Kobe Bryant's wall Tuesday night as the Miami Heat The Miami Heat (known as the HEAT [in all capital letters] on official team publications) are a professional basketball team based in Miami, Florida, United States. They play in the National Basketball Association (NBA). and Dallas Mavericks The introduction of this article is too short.
To comply with Wikipedia's lead section guidelines, it should be expanded. battled to the buzzer in Game 6 of the NBA Finals The NBA Finals is the championship series of the National Basketball Association.
The team winning the Eastern Conference Finals earns one of the two berths in the championship round, with the other going to the team that wins the Western Conference Finals. , assuming a fly could penetrate the Newport Coast sanctuary of a $16 million-a-year shooting guard The Shooting guard (SG), also known as the two or off guard, is one of five traditional positions on a basketball team. Players of the position are often shorter, leaner, and quicker than forwards. .
What was Kobe doing while Shaquille O'Neal Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal (pronounced "shak-KEEL") (born March 6, 1972 in Newark, New Jersey), frequently referred to simply as Shaq, is an American professional basketball player, generally regarded as one of the most dominant in the National Basketball Association (NBA). was winning the NBA NBA
1. National Basketball Association
2. National Boxing Association
NBA (US) n abbr (= National Basketball Association) → Basketball-Dachverband (= title?
Was he shedding tears of joy for the big lug (1) (Linux Users Group) A formal or informal organization of Linux users who gather together virtually or in person to exchange information and resources. Some groups maintain mailing lists and send out newsletters for their members. with whom he famously made nice in January -- or sticking pins in a Kazaam doll? Was he watching the basketball game -- or watching the ``Law and Order'' rerun re·run
The act or an instance of rebroadcasting a recorded movie or a recorded television performance.
tr.v. re·ran , re·run, re·run·ning, re·runs
To present a rerun of. ? Was he in the fetal position fetal position
A position of the body at rest in which the spine is curved, the head is bowed forward, and the arms and legs are drawn in toward the chest. on the couch On the Couch is an Australian television program formally broadcast on the Fox Footy Channel and it focuses on the current issues in the AFL. This is now broadcast on Fox Sports after the closure of Fox Footy Channel.
The show airs on Monday night and is hosted by Gerard Healy. -- or in the rec room working on his jumper?
The night Shaquille O'Neal won his first championship since leaving Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. could not have been a good time to be Kobe Bryant, to name only the Laker most likely pained by this news.
How must it feel to be Kobe, watching Shaq win the ex-teammates' race to be the first to win a title without the other one? How must it feel to be Jerry Buss and Mitch Kupchak, watching the center the owner and general manager judged to be aging and overpriced o·ver·price
tr.v. o·ver·priced, o·ver·pric·ing, o·ver·pric·es
To put too high a price or value on.
costing more than it is thought to be worth
Adj. two summers ago show he had just enough left?
How must it feel to be Phil Jackson, watching old coaching rival Pat Riley get back on top of the profession?
Throw in Gary Payton winning his first title, twoyears after L.A. traded Payton to Boston and he ripped the franchise on the way out of town, and Lakers stomachs had to be churning.
I'm picturing something like the scene after Kobe ate the bad cheeseburger in Sacramento and Lakers trainer Gary Vitti described him as ``doubled over like a shrimp.''
It should be noted that since O'Neal was traded to Miami -- for Lamar Odom, Brian Grant, Caron Butler and a draft choice -- there have been several premature attempts here to declare a winner in the Shaq-Kobe and Lakers-Heat rivalries.
There was Christmas Day 2004, when Shaq and the Heat beat Kobe and the Lakers at Staples Center, and I wrote that O'Neal was in the ``better place'' of the two.
There was December 2005, when Shaq dropped in on a Lakers-Charlotte game at Staples and was cheered by the fans, and I wrote that Bryant is ``a long way from ever again being a hero in L.A.''
There was Jan. 18, when I wrote that Kobe had ``won'' the feud after O'Neal gave in and initiated a pregame hug at Staples, Bryant outplayed O'Neal and the Lakers beat the Heat.
And there was April30, when I wrote about Kobe's ``finest moment'' after Bryant's buzzer-beaters in regulation and overtime gave the Lakers a 3-1 playoff series lead over the Phoenix Suns while O'Neal and the Heat were struggling against the Chicago Bulls.
Of course, the Lakers went on to lose their series, the Heat went on to win its series. Now, here we are.
Shaq's up, Kobe's down. At least until the next development.
Shaquille O'Neal wins the NBA title. Gary Payton wins the NBA title.
Pat Riley wins the NBA title.
And, if Bryant was watching the Heat celebration on TV, he heard O'Neal praise Dwyane Wade the way he used to do with Kobe, calling the series MVP (Multimedia Video Processor) A high-speed DSP chip from Texas Instruments, introduced in 1994. Officially introduced as the TMS320C80, it combines RISC technology with the functionality of four DSPs on one chip. ``the best player ever.''
Lakers fans, what does it all mean? That Shaq was right and Kobe was wrong? That Kupchak threw away what could have been a fourth championship with that superstar combination?
As good as it might feel to pile all the blame on somebody, it really isn't that simple.
It will continue to say here that Shaq is 51 percent responsible for the Shaq-Kobe feud and that the Lakers made the right choice in 2004 if the town wasn't big enough for a 32-year-old O'Neal and a 26-year-old Bryant.
Shaq's contribution to an NBA title in Miami, including his role in nurturing the 24-year-old Wade, makes it harder for his critics to suggest he was any kind of disruptive force in LosAngeles. But his contribution in the Finals (a team-high 10.2 rebounds but only 13.7 points per game) makes it just as difficult for his fans to say he's anything close to what used to be described as the sport's ``most dominant player.''
Both O'Neal and Bryant had good springs, each coming off a little less self-centered. Ultimately, though, O'Neal ended up better, winning that fourth ring and so far refraining from openly gloating.
Not that the Lakers can do anything about it just yet, with the personnel and economic conditions that tie their hands through the 2006-07 season, but the urgency to return to title contention during the Kobe- Phil era just went up a notch.
The Lakers will win again. And even if they don't, LosAngeles will get over the fact that Shaq has won again for a city a continent away.
Or maybe we won't. Here's a headline Wednesday from Florida Today, a paper based near Orlando, where Shaq played a decade ago: ``Magic Still Suffering From Loss of O'Neal.''
Kevin Modesti's column appears in the Daily News three days a week.