Ken Layne* (www.kenlayne.com) writes a column laying out a conspiracy theory in regard to Kobe Bryant's food poisoning prior to game two of the Western Conference Finals.
Bryant's illness had him doubled over with intestinal cramps and, according to TNT's Craig Sager, "losing it from both ends." When asked for proof of this assertion, Sager produced two ziplock baggies filled with two different foul-looking liquids.
All I know is that, despite Shaq's bellowing like a bull elephant while galumphing back up the court after each of his several thunderous dunks in the second half, Sacramento was not to be cowed.
As usual, Shaq was gracious in defeat, blaming the loss on the referees. According to ESPN.com, Shaq had this to say after the game: "In order to beat us, you have to beat us fair and square. There's only one way to beat us. It starts with a 'C' and ends with a 'T.' The real basketball fans understand what's going on here."
And while Bryant's food-poisoning clearly played a factor in the Lakers' defeat, he should remember that, if he really wants to be like Mike, he cannot rely upon excuses of any kind. Jordan did not let sickness dampen his resolve in the finals against the Utah Jazz in a pivotal game at Utah. Anyone remember if that was '97 or '98?
*I apologize, but certain links aren't working. I'm going to have to consult the peeps at Blogger about this.