The citizens of Memphis were witness to a bit of history last night, as Kobe Bryant dropped 60 points on their Grizzlies in the Lakers’ 121-119 win. For
number 8 number 24, it was his third consecutive game scoring 50 points or more.
As the Lakers and Memphis Grizzlies played Thursday night at FedExForum, fans erupted in cheers at inopportune times that had nothing to do with the antics of the Grizzlies’ mascot.
Fans were simply watching the Tigers play Texas A&M in the NCAA tournament, a game shown on the scoreboard at FedExForum for the final minutes of the Tigers’ 65-64 victory over the Aggies.
Grizzlies fans cheered during dramatic moments of the Tigers’ game several times, including two occasions while Lamar Odom was shooting free throws.
Odom missed both free throws during one of the crowd’s outbursts and missed one of two a little later during another eruption.
Lakers Coach Phil Jackson eventually complained to referee Bob Delaney, who told Grizzlies game-operations officials to stop showing the Tigers’ game on the scoreboard.
“I went to the scorer’s table and said, ‘That’s not right,’ ” Jackson said later. “This is the game that’s being played here. Delaney did the right thing.”
There were three seconds left in the Tigers’ game when it was taken off the scoreboard. The Tigers were clinging to a one-point lead.
The crowd gave a standing ovation with 3:39 left in the third quarter of the Lakers-Grizzlies game when the final score of the Tigers-Aggies game was announced.
With all due respect to Bryant’s one-man show, Memphis/A&M was more fun to watch.
Before the Lakers played the Grizzlies last night in Memphis, Kobe Bryant denied contacting Elvis on behalf of Nike. He also claimed contact with Kevin Durant was either consensual or incidental.
I’m guessing Durant won’t see half as much contact once he actually gets to the NBA. After beating the Ray Allen-less Sonics at the buzzer Wednesday night, Gilbert Arenas felt compelled to punctuate a 42-point performance by leaving his jersey near the free throw line. Between throwing himself a seven-figure birthday party, hopping on a trampoline during an All-Star Game timeout, and now acting like a space cadet at the Space Needle, you think Arenas might be craving attention?
The quote of the day comes from USC’s Tim Floyd, who tells the LA Times’ Ben Bloch that if he had his druthers, O.J. Mayo would be eligible for the NBA draft this June.
“If he’s as good as we think he’s going to be next year, I don’t want the responsibility of him coming in and tearing up a knee like Shaun Livingston did with the Clippers because this kid doesn’t have anything,” Floyd said. “And I think he deserves the right to go make a living and change his life and his family’s life versus us putting a rule in that states that he has to be here for a year.”
While Henry Abbott rightly hails Brandon Roy’s performance last night against the Knicks (24 points), there’s also something to be said for for the hosts leaving Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge all-by-himself right under the basket. The ’06/’07 Knicks are unquestionably a harder working, more likeable team than the crew Larry Brown lambasted with regularity. But their collective basketball IQ is hard to measure on certain nights, and much of that has to come down to the coaching staff.