shout out to Funky Cold Mark Medina who is heading to the Warriors

One of the funnest parts of overseeing the blogs at the LAT way back in the day was our sports blogs.

the Lakers Blog was one of the first blogs at the Times and it was already a monster before I ever got there.

i was able to convince LA’s best Dodger blogger to blog for us, and i was able to do it without costing the paper a lot of money (because we had just gotten rid of some salary elsewhere).

but when ESPN poached the Kam Bros I was suddenly lost because i never expected them to leave us.

I tried everything in the book to convince them to stay saying things like, “radio isn’t where intellectuals go, it’s where washed up journalists and jocks go. You are both young, pretty, full of life, do you really want Bill from Downey to tell you that he thinks Kobe should pass the rock all day?”

it didn’t work, The Sports Leader ganked the brothers and I had a giant hole to fill.

at first I decided to replace them American Idol style by having 4-5 contenders take over the blog, one applicant per week, and at the end of the trial period we let the readers vote.

but life is rarely that exciting. so we interviewed this guy from that paper and this other dude from this other paper. they were fine.

but Mark Medina had something special that i liked: he was young, totally down for Whatever, and somehow it came up that he lived in El Segundo so he could be close to the Lakers and Clippers practice facilities.

i was all, this is the sort of insane fan/pro that i need to write 3-4 blog posts a day.

so we hired him and expected the worst because the Kams totally dominated the Lakers blogosphere up until that point.

and part of their popularity was the fact that they’d get 100s of comments a day. Could Mark mix it up in the comments AND go to practices AND interview the players AND cut videos AND go to all the games AND give me half or 3/4ths the traffic that the Kams did?

weirdly he Could!

in a total shocker, many of the readers did not follow the Kams to ESPN, they stayed loyal, for reasons I still don’t know (habit maybe), with the Times.

people asked, is Mark really that good of a writer? what’s his secret?

and maybe the secret was the readers saw what I saw: Funky Cold truly loved the game, was earnest, wasn’t full of shit, and was personable.

and for two years straight his numbers were consistent with the kings, the Kams.

Mark was so friendly that when Ron Artest (aka Metta World Peace) first retired from the Lakers he gave a shout out to Funky Cold.

Today Mark announced that the San Jose Mercury is hiring him to cover the world champion Warriors.

Last night he called me to tell me he was going to announce it all today. He thanked me for the help I gave him at the Times.

But the truth is, he wrote everything, he did 60+ hour work weeks, he studied film, he worked as hard as anyone out there.

I am Very happy for him. Boring as that team will be to cover, at least he will get to go to a few more postseason games than if he was stuck covering the Lakers.

Give em hell Mark!

two conversations with karisa about alan iverson

on gchat

November 3, 2008

10:58 AM me: AI traded!

10:59 AM Karisa: if only i cared about basketball… 😉

me: yeah but i thought that was your man!

Karisa: alan iverson? no

me: im so confused

Karisa: i’ve never cared about him

me: why did i think you loved him?

Karisa: no idea

11:03 AM me: AHAHAHAHA. this is exactly the same convo we had almost 2 years ago

11:04 AM Karisa: did you google it?

me: i deeeeeeeed omg i have to post this on the busblog

11:05 AM Karisa: so i said i didn’t care about him?

me: ahah yep

Karisa: ahahahah! that is pretty funny

December 19, 2006

8:30 PM me: did you hear your boy AI is going to denver?

8:31 PM Karisa: al?

me: allen iverson

Karisa: i don’t really give a crap about basketball, tbh

me: i thought you loved hijm!

Karisa: ? since?

me: PeopleSupport days!

Karisa: no. i remember having a conversation with you about watching him when i was a big college bball fan in h.s.
but not since then. not necessarily a fan
the only bball player i ever liked really was reggie miller. i have no idea why
and of course the celtics in the mid-80’s 😉

me: wow i must have been wasted that day cuz i thought you loved him

Karisa: you must have

me: although now reggie miller is ringing a bell

Karisa: nope

8:35 PM me: youre gonna hate your christmas gift then

Karisa: haha 😉 what should i get my bf for xmas?

me: a blonde and a redhead of course

more proof how horrible my memory is. something that any of my close friends know, even those who i talk with almost every day.

exclusive interview with shaquille o’neal

christina hendricks shaq, tough loss.


wanna talk about it?

what’s there to say, any time i raised my hand up in the air, somebody would fall over. instead of golden trophies of basketballs they should be handing out oscars. and the refs should get best supporting actor awards. how many times did kobe drive the lane and they swallowed their whistles? all the time. f the refs.

why do you think it went down that way?

they want parity in the nba. they dont like the fact that the lakers could just sign two great stars like karl and gary and win another ring. they want the east to look stronger than it is. they want some new heroes. they want the kids wearing fake afros and the Bad Boys to make a return to the nba. they want to reward larry brown and punish the answer. they want this to be the wwf, wwe, whatever. they want there to be a badder group of dudes than the baddest. we’re the baddest dudes. nobody can take that from us. but they can hand rings to others.

shaq, some say that they called the finals the way that they should have called the last 5 years. they called you for fouls cuz you constantly elbow and manhandle.

if thats the case, then they picked a rotten time to start enforcing the rule. thats like suddenly calling knee high strikes strikes during the world series when you havent called them all year. and what about in minnesota when my boy madsen was dateraping me and still didnt get a foul called on him.

why do you think its like that?

its easy. its psychology. you see a big huge guy. then you see a bigger huger guy. if the bigger guy is standing there getting fouled by a smaller guy it doesnt look like a foul, it looks like the smaller guy is just trying real hard. but indeed it is a foul. its a real foul. if you prick me, dont i bleed?

as a matter of fact, ive never seen you bleed shaq.

well, i do. i bleed inside. where it counts.

thats sad.

im bleeding now.

so whats next for the lakers?

f the lakers. im on vacation. and all im going to do is try to get a new president elected.

pardon me?

i cant stand bush and i didnt even like reagan. do you know that reagan is the reason why saddam had the gas that he used on “his own people”? the kurds?

no i didnt know that.

bro, get thee to a library. rumsfeld was sent by reagan as his special envoy to iraq to do, among other things, ensure the delivery of chemical weapons that saddam used, not just on iranians, like reagan wanted, but on the kurds. and even after he did that reagan and rummy were buddies with him. we enabled saddam to be the bad guy that he is, was, whatever. and now george bush jr is going to be the guy who rids the world of him? talk about a straw man.


and reagan funded afghanistan during their war with the soviets. and who was the main guy in afghanistan during that time? who got the guns and the money and the training? who became the islamic warrior as they faught the soviets who outnumbered them by 3:1? osama bin hiding. the reasons the republicans know so much about saddam and his gas, and osama, and terrorism and al queda is because reagan started this whole mess and bush is trying to clean it up. the last thing they want is to have the democrats say, “look at this fucking mess those fuckups started with reagan, and we’re going to have to fix it all.”

what about your free throws? how are you going to approach them in the off-season? will phil return? what about kobe? are you two friends now?

interview over.

mark cuban + vimh + sk smith on laker hatin

honey, the baby is eating bullets again

crazy art

i cant wait to have kids. the san leandro superior court says i already have one, but my dna swab says different.

if i had a little baby right now, id put the little buggar on my knee and id say, watch shaq play.

the baby would probably coo “ko-be… ko-be.”

but i’d say, no, little baby, shaq, watch shaq.

then id put the infant down, run to the nursery and return with a shaq jersey and put it on the child.

yes, i think shaq’s underrated. how many big men have made it through the nba and have fallen to injury or the double team or personality crisis or sex scandal or whathave you and had their careers fizzle after a season or two?


shaq didnt have a lot of things going for him when he made it to the nba: his father was MIA, he went to a second-rate college, got drafted #1 by a second-rate team, got mixed up in the music and movie business, fathered a bunch of children out of wedlock, and never seemed to get along with his point guard, Penny Hardaway. His rookie card was going for $350 on the street, and where do you go from there? only place is down.

there was a lot of expectations on the 7’1″ 315 youngster when he was stolen away by the Lakers a few years ago. and some of that pressure, no doubt, led to his public feud with Kobe.

to pile on, Don Nelson created Hack-a-Shaq, a defense where he would just foul the big guy and make him earn his points from the charity stripe.

and for a while this technique was effective, eerilly so.

but as we now know, this is no longer the case, and Don Nelson is on a golf course in Hawaii and Shaq is in a whirlpool in downtown LA preparing for Game 1 of the NBA Finals.

dont let the fanfare of the hype daze you into thinking that this isnt a big even just because Michael Jordan isnt on the court: Shaquille O’Neal is now poised to win his third championship ring in a row. What NBA center do you know that’s done that in the last 20-30 years?

not anyone i remember seeing, and dont say Will Perdue.

anyway, im glad i dont have any little kids right now cuz if i did i would have to explain to them the genius of Phil Jackson and Tex Winter, i’d have to diagram the triangle offense, make them understand how if a few key lakers can master taking a charge they can get Kidd in foul trouble easy.

and theres nothing worse than a mother coming through the door after a hard days work as the father is running over a kid yelling, “dont move your feet. HOLD YOUR DAMN POSITION!” as little hands and feet go flying across the hardwood floors into a fern as the dog barks and the front door slams.

lakers in four, kidds, id mumble, and id place the ball in the mother’s hands, kiss her cheek and retreat to the fridge for another cold frosty one.

when i wake up in the morning i have a million ideas


same goes for when im riding the bus home.

but then i get in front of the computer and i begin to write to you and all my great ideas are thrown right out of the window.

this morning i was going to go through a run-down of the new jersey nets and let you know about the mad skills of jason kidd, the crazy underreported talents of Keith Van Horn, the sweet young hops of kenyon martin, and the magnificent defensive prowess of kerry kittles.

laura palmeri was going to tell you that you shouldnt be surprised if big gangly todd macculoch blocked a few of kobe’s drives to the lane tonight even though todd looks like a giraffe wearing rolling skates most of the time.

but then i flipped on the local news and they were showing a junior high in east LA and all the kids were holding a huge sign across the football field that said “go lakers” and i realised the futility of my public service.

they stuck a microphone in the sweet little face of a 13 year old girl wearing a kobe jersey and a bow in her hair and they asked her why she thought that the lakers would win and with an angelic smile she casually said, “because the nets suck.”

all my years of schooling and i couldnt have said it better myself.

indeed rosa martinez, the nets do suck.

they suck because they dont have shaq, they dont have kobe, they dont have phil, they dont have tex, they dont have staples center, they dont have two rings, they dont have the laker girls, they dont have jack, they dont have chick.

they dont have shit.

and they dont have you, rosa,

and they’ll never have me.

fuck them.

f the nets, f byron scott for even bringing his team over here, f the freaky looking nets, and f marv albert for getting away with wearing womens lingerie and being able to bite ladies in the back and only have to take a year off work and then be able to come back to broadcast this, the world series of basketball, and make more money in one night than i’ll make all year.

for saying “yes!”


this series is going to be a great one because in my opinion Shaq gets very little respect. and this will be the finals where everyone will finally have to give it up to him.

byron scott, the nets coach is a former laker point guard from the Showtime era of Magic, Cooper, Worthy and Kareem.

he knows the way to stop the lakers is to run shaq into the ground and theres no better fast-break general than jason kidd who can push the ball, stop, pop, or pass.

give to the lakers what is the lakers.

and the lakers, before they got the big fella, were flash. flash in a way that shaq dresses off the court.

on the court, the way for the lakers to win is with muscle.

derek fisher may have shown up a tad in gave seven in sacto, but im not counting on him.

and kobe doesnt seem like hes wanting to take over a game the way that jason kidd feels responsible to.

and since shaq somehow can sink these free throws, the lakers have no other choice than to ride his coattails to a three peat.

still, rosa, it is fun to say that the nets suck in public isnt it?

but, for me, its funner to say fuck.

fuck the nets.

fuck em.