When I saw the hipcheck by Robert Horry to Steve Nash, I actually didn't think that much about it. Yes, the foul was unnecessary and deserved the flagrant 2 it got, but I didn't think much would come of it given the importance of the Suns/Spurs series. And then yesterday happened and now we have a game 5 without Amare Stoudamire, without Boris Diaw, and without Big Shot Rob. And while most said Horry's suspension was warranted, I disagree. This is the playoffs. It's supposed to be physical and hard fouls like Horry's add intrigue into the series. I don't think David Stern and Stu Jackson understand how important the outcome this series will have on the rest of the league. I'm of the belief that the winner from this Spurs/Suns series will win the NBA Title, but more importantly this is the series that has the most potential to create that lasting, special moment that every playoffs has. Remember last year's Dirk Nowitzki drive to the hoop and foul in game 7 of the conference finals? Or MJ's shot/offensive foul against Bryon Russell back in the day? And what about Derek Fisher's miracle shot with the Lakers a few years back? Those are memories that stick with NBA fans forever and now a potential one could have been altered because Stern has once again overstepped his boundaries, like he always seems to be doing these days.
Seriously, everytime I see an interview with this guy, I leave thinking what an egomaniac he is. For God's sake, you're 5-foot-whatever, old, and probably haven't played competitive sports since age 10. Yes, he has had a great impact on the globalization of the game, but that's what he's supposed to do, not impact actual games. The Suns had a giganticly huge momentum-building win in San Antonio where they finally showed the moxie and toughness of a championship-caliber team down the stretch. And let's be honest with ourselves here, both the Spurs and the Suns and championship-quality teams when at full strength. But without Stoudamire and Diaw, who is Stoudamire's backup, the Suns are likely going to have to count on little-used reserves Pat Burke and Jalen Rose (Holler!). Not to mention the Suns were having a hard enough time dealing with Tim Duncan when Stoudamire was playing. Now, Tim will have even more free reign to do what he pleases in the post.
I HATE YOU!
This isn't the first time Stern has fucked up either. I was vehemently against all of his shenanigans involving what players dressed like on the court. For him to tell someone like Allen Iverson to take off an arm sleeve is totally crossing the boundaries. And then when he instituted the new ball, despite the backlash it caused from many players, he looked like a giant douche when he was forced to revert back to the old ball in January. I understand that Stern and the commissioner's office want to avoid bench-clearing melees like the infamous Palace debacle a few years back, but Amare and Diaw came nowhere near the scuffle. It just seems unfair to me that the team that initiated this whole mess (the Spurs) are gaining an upper hand because a bunch of dickhead executives feel the need to show how much power they have.
Count me as a Suns fan for the rest of this series. I was already leaning towards them because of various reasons including my disgust with Bruce Bowen, no matter how good at defense he is. Also, when did Tim Duncan turn into the biggest crybaby in basketball. I bet Timmy was that kid in school who got caught cheating on a test redhanded and then bitched to the teacher about how everything was culturally biased and ended up getting away with it (I hope everyone caught my Blue Chips reference there). Seriously though, according to the Big Fundamental he has apparently been everytime he shoots the ball and hasn't yet committed a foul all season long. Oh wait, I forgot he raised his hand a couple times in game 5 to indicate he had in fact committed a foul when he would wrap both arms around Amare when he had sure dunks.
But in the end here, David Stern is only hurting his own league with this ruling on the suspensions. This is the marquee matchup of the playoffs with the Mavs out, and it's being ruined because of some egomaniac who seems to have lost his grip on reality.
I bet these jackasses planned this out together.