Jackson should lower expectations for O'Neal, Speights

Jackson should lower expectations for O'Neal, Speights
April 30, 2014, 7:30 pm
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Jermaine O’Neal is too old to tackle DeAndre Jordan for extended minutes, and Marreese Speights doesn’t really do the defensive thing.
Ray Ratto

What, more Donald Sterling? Yes. More Donald Sterling, and no more of that backsass, missy. The first law of journalism in the modern age is, "Never down a free story," and this is as free as it gets, so pipe down. You'll read it and damned well like it.

Sources have told everyone interested in asking that they expect the NBA owners to have 29 firm votes to force a sale of the Los Angeles Clippers, which is seven more than needed if all 30 clubs vote, and six more than needed if the Clippers’ representative (probably either Hedo Turkoglu or Toby Kimball) do not. This is not so.

The vote will be ANNOUNCED as being 29-0, or 30-0, or 29-0 with one abstention (or maybe even 29-1), but the actual vote may very well be something else. At least 23, sure, but the owners in any league meeting always manage to find unanimity as soon as one side has won the day.

I mean, yes, that’s pedantic, but if Adam Silver stands for transparency the same way David Stern did, we’ll probably never know.

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Meanwhile, Oprah Winfrey, Larry Ellison and David Geffen (total net worth: France) are uniting to make a bid for the Clippers, and unless the owners will do as they did in Sacramento and leave money on the table, this group will have more throw-weight than anyone else interested in buying the team.

But if the league wants Magic Johnson to be the new owner as a neatly wrapped epilogue to the dungstorm-that-could-have-been-worse, the vote will be announced as 29-0. Or 30-0, or 29-0-1, or maybe 29-1.

And every dollar over a billion means that DTS (Don’t Think about Speaking) will have made $987.5 million plus above and beyond his initial investment. Not exactly the same as showering the audience with cars now, is it O?

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Nevada Senator Harry Reid stumped today for the Washington NFL thingy to “follow the lead of the NBA” and attack racism by changing its team nickname.

Okey dokey then, Hank. The Washington Clippers it is. Or do you want Washington Silvers, after the owners’ front man who delivered the good tidings Tuesday?

No, that second one won’t work because some smartarse would mock them on Twitter and “You mean the Sterling Silvers?” That would sort of defeat the purpose of the thing.

Us, we’re kind of leaning toward changing the nickname to Canadiens, just to encourage lots of yahoo rage.

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Warriors coach Mark Jackson, basking in the radioactive heat of Clippers center DeAndre Jordan’s best game ever (25 points, 18 rebounds) in Game 5, which the Clippers won by double-digits, was unhappy with his centers' competition level in Los Angeles.

“We did a poor job competing against him,” Jackson said Wednesday. “Early on the ballgame, he ducks in and gets a dunk. It takes the life out of you a little bit. We've got to do a better job. We've got to own the fact that we didn't do it. And we've got to do a better job. It's easy to say, well, we're short-handed. That's an excuse. Find a way to get it done. It's documented that we can do it, in previous games.”

Or maybe Jermaine O’Neal is too old to tackle Jordan for extended minutes, and Marreese Speights doesn’t really do the defensive thing, which means “poor job” must be taken with a fast food joint’s supply of salt.

[POOLE: Warriors need more fight to survive Clippers]

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Donte Whitner will not be Hitner after all. Evidently it was too much of a hassle filling out forms. Too bad, too. There;’s no chance the DMV would screw up the new name and he’d end up with a very unfortunate picture from history from some underzealous clerk.

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The Toronto Raptors handed out free Drake lint-rollers Wednesday in honor of the rapper’s quick dry-cleaning job on his trousers before an earlier Brooklyn-Toronto game, a scary thought if the Raptors had happened to lose.

Of course, with their luck, if the Maple Leafs had tried the same thing, it would have been on Steam Iron Night.

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And finally, you don’t screw with jilted fans, and you definitely don’t screw with them by asking them to help you with some marketing boondoggle.

Norwich City of the English Premier League is battling desperately (and not all that successfully) to avoid relegation, so when they were asked to vote for the Canaries’ best player this year, they swamped the ballot box/Internet/airplane streamers/buttocks tattoos (hey, it’s England) with support for Carlo Nash.

Yes, we know what you’re asking, so we’ll tell you. Nash is the team’s third-string goalkeeper, and has played exactly zero seconds this year, and been on the team bench only nine times.

Upon being informed that he was on the verge of winning a trophy by putting exactly the same amount of on-field work as famed British comedian and all-around smart guy Stephen Fry, Nash announced that he will “graciously decline” the award if he ends up with the highest number of votes.

Nobly done. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to cast about 1,600 votes for Stephen Fry.

Ray Ratto is a columnist for CSNBayArea.com