Friday, June 10, 2005

The LA Clippers Win NBA Title

In my NBA playoff bracket I had the scoring-challenged Spurs and Pistons playing for the title. That's not what I wanted to see but it's the current reality of pro hoops "dull ball." Last night's 84-69 Spurs' victory over the grind-it-out Pistons put a lot of us lifetime fans to sleep.

But there's always the fantasy that a high scoring underdog might make it to the finals and get a ring.

About 7 years ago I responded to a CNN sports message board thread which asked, "What will it take for the LA Clippers to win the NBA title?"

For those of you who aren't pro basketball fans, the Clippers are perenially one of the worst teams in the league. Sports Illustrated ranked them as the worst pro franchise in major sports history a couple of years ago.

The team is owned by a real estate mogul named Donald Sterling. Sterling's only real interest is in selling the team for a lot more than he paid for it. He bought the team when the NBA was just becoming popular and he's made hundreds of millions in equity on the Clippers as the league became a world-wide phenomenon even though the Clippers have been a joke for decades. He understands that buying the cheapest and crappiest house on the most popular street in the city is the best investment around. No need to spend much on upkeep because your investment will make you a pile of cash anyway.

Smart guy, no doubt. And he loves the celebrity spotlight of LA. He's also developed a well deserved reputation as a meddling owner who interferes in the coaching and personnel decisions of the team even though he knows very little about the game.

What would it take to make the ultimate hoops fantasy a reality? How could the Clippers win the title and deliver the NBA from the current 15 year reign of defensive oriented snooze ball?

Here's my updated take from the old CNN post. Some might find this a little irreverant, so consider yourself warned.

Jesus returns and becomes both General Manager and coach of the Clippers. Still, Sterling insists on making the draft picks and trades. He drafts the Anti-Christ in the first round out of Nevada Las Vegas and team chemistry problems ensue. Clips fail to make the playoffs though their coach can walk on water.

Anti-Christ becomes disillusioned and demands trade. Sterling moves him to Miami. AC tires of Miami coach Stan Van Gundy's lectures on boxing out and loses his enthusiasm and his jumper. Van Gundy leaves the Duke of Darkness off playoff roster.

Sterling keeps the Lord on as both coach and GM, but becomes infatuated with an ignorant 6'11" teenage gangsta wannabe named Darius "Dogfather" Miles who he picks up in the middle of the first round of the draft. Clippers' newspaper and tv ticket ads feature the Dogfather flashing gang signs and making Clippers fans "an offer they can't refuse."

Jesus demands committment from players, telling the LA Times that his team must "take up their cross and follow me." Players laugh and reserves begin eating popcorn on the bench during games.

Sterling, citing the Lord's inability to communicate effectively with his players, buys out the last two years of Jesus' contract and fires him.

The Clippers finish in last place for two more years.

But in an unexpected move, Jesus decides to return to the NBA as a player. Sterling gives him a one year contract at league minimum.

The Lord has a great training camp and starts at point guard.

He temporarily strikes opponents deaf, dumb and blind during the fourth quarter of games and the Clips break the NBA record for victories and points scored and take the NBA title.

During the offseason after the championship run, Sterling decides to trade Jesus for Vlade Divac in what he calls "a salary cap" move. The 40 year old Vlade reports to camp out of breath after a 15 year, 4-pack-a-day Marlboro habit. A week into training camp Vlade retires, telling reporters "I want to spend more time with my family."

The Clippers again challenge for the league's worst record.

Sterling, ever positive, entertains celebrities like Tommy Lasorda and The Artist Formerly Known As Prince Who is Now Known As Prince Again in courtside seats and hopes for the best.

See, turning the Clippers and the NBA around isn't that hard.

It's just a matter of a little divine intervention.


Post a Comment

<< Home