Video: Derek Fisher Checks Luis Scola with Elbow, Should be Suspended

The way Laker fans were acting following Fisher’s stinker in Game 1, they might actually be happy if Derek Fisher were to be suspended for Game 3 against the Rockets. Luis Scola seemed to be in the middle of every tussle in the second half of Game 2 Wednesday night against the Lakers, getting into it with Lamar Odom late in the third quarter. So when Scola went to set a screen on Derek Fisher, he got leveled. Check out this hockey-style check by Fish that resulted in a flagrant 2 ejection:

Fisher’s intention to make contact and hurt Scola, while leading with his elbow, makes me say this is suspension worthy. It will be up to the league so who knows what they’ll do (Scola’s flop-job won’t help Fisher, either). Maybe this is just the sort of thing that will make the Laker fans happy — not that they want 17 minutes of Farmar jacking up threes instead.

Will the Media Keep Us from Enjoying Zack Greinke’s Excellent Season?

Zack Greinke’s emergence last year on top of his impressive start to the season this year has caused him to receive plenty of attention nationally. As is the way of the day, people can’t just settle for a player dominating his sport — that’s not good enough. Oh no, the media needs a story to grasp onto, milk, and suck dry until the point that it’s no longer enjoyable to hear about that player’s accomplishments. I heard from fans during college basketball season who said that Stephen Curry was one of the most enjoyable players to watch last year during the tournament but the media overdid it so much this year that it was no longer fun to watch him. I said as much about Josh Hamilton last year — I really was on board with what he was doing but the media went into overkill and ruined it. I think we’re already hitting that point with Zack Greinke.

In case you’ve missed it, Greinke is 6-0 this year with three complete games and two shutouts in six starts. He’s only allowed three runs (two earned) in 45 freaking innings pitched. He’s allowed just 38 men to reach base which is almost absurdly dominating. The guy’s been awesome and he’s been a huge reason why the Royals are leading the AL Central. Now rightfully so, he’s already received attention and due by Sports Illustrated who put him on the cover and gave him a nice featured article. Since adding KC-based writer Joe Posnanski to their staff, they’ve been on top of all major stories in the midwest-area so it’s no surprise they were first on the national scene to pounce on the Greinke story.

Posnanski’s feature centered on the year off of baseball Greinke took when he was going through social anxiety issues and how Zack’s fighting to overcome the issue. Articles on other sites began highlighting this story and now it seems like all references to him include some words about “what he’s overcome.” Even trying to watch him on the ESPNEWS highlights following his most recent outing I had to hear about his social anxiety story. And this was in a highlight show where all I wanted to see was how he pitched, not hear the background story! I’m just saying that the better he does and the longer this goes on, the worse the coverage is going to get. I really hope the media doesn’t spoil the enjoyment of simply watching a pitcher dominate. That’s all I really want to do — just watch Zack Greinke kick some ass with his 97mph fastball and not have to be reminded every single time he pitches about “how much he’s overcome.” Is that too much to ask?

LBS Baseball Tickets Giveaway from Carl’s Jr. Orange Cream Shake

To anyone who reads and/or contributes to the site by telling friends, visiting it, commenting, or passing along tips, your patronage is extremely appreciated. You’re what keeps me going here every day. Sometimes I like to try and give a thank you by running contests where the winner receives prize pack giveaways. And now thanks to Carl’s Jr. and their new Orange Cream Shake, I can hook one lucky reader up. Here’s the deal: Carl’s Jr. is going to give one of you coupons for the Orange Cream Shake, a beer cozy, four tickets to either the Angels or Dodgers, a corresponding bobblehead doll, and a Flip Video Ultra F260 Orange 60-Minute Digital Camcorder. Sounds pretty sweet to me.

As you can tell, the prize-pack is somewhat LA-centric, so to that end, the contest is targeted more towards the LA audience. The Dodgers have tied a major league record for the longest home winning streak to start a season by going 12-0. Here’s how the contest is going to (sadly) work: tell me (in the comments) when you think the streak is going to end and how many total runs will be scored in the game. Whoever gets closest wins the prize pack. Better act fast because the streak could end at any point during this homestand. And don’t forget to visit your local Carl’s Jr. to try out an Orange Cream Shake!

Bowen Wallace of Tilden Wins $278K on Kentucky Derby Superfecta Ticket

When you see that a horse with odds of 50:1 wins the Kentucky Derby, your (or at least my) reaction was to wonder who’s holding that winning ticket. While a $10 investment would have netted you a comfortable $500 profit, nothing compares to what Bowen Wallace of Tilden, Texas got from picking the ponies properly on Saturday.

The 41-year-old Tilden resident won $278,503.20 on a $1 superfecta ticket for the 135th Derby, which was simulcast live at Retama Park.

He won by correctly picking the top four finishers. The winner was Mine That Bird, a 50-1 long shot. Wallace’s winning ticket was a five-horse superfecta box, which cost him $120. He says he took home $209,000, after taxes were taken out at the track.

According to the San Antonio Express-News, there were 23 outstanding winning $1 superfecta tickets. Dizzamn. That’s some serious cash. Remember though, when an underdog (underhorse?) wins like that, all that money coming in on the favorites gets flushed down the drain. Wallace says jockey Calvin Borel was a major factor influencing where he bet his money. On Saturday we sure found out why.

(via Ben Maller)

The Packers Didn’t Draft B.J. Raji for His Command of the English Language

Yes, that’s how Packers first-round pick and former Boston College Eagles DT B.J. Raji signed an autograph as pointed out by the folks at Deadspin. Let’s just hope this guy stuffs the run and sacks quarterbacks better than he spells. Maybe he should have put down the bong and actually attended a few English classes. Perhaps that would have helped. For the record, I’m expecting him to be a bust — I just get a horrible sense about his body language.

(Or maybe he was just trying to share with us how all the players felt after games??)

LeBron James on Winning the MVP: I Did it for the Kia

I was pretty surprised that the MVP voting turned out to be such a landslide in favor of LeBron James. Even though Dwyane Wade made an excellent charge after the All-Star break, his dropoff down the stretch made LBJ the easy selection. I just can’t believe it was that easy. LeBron got 109 of the 121 available first-place votes, dominating the race (Kobe and Chris Paul got two each, Wade got seven, and Dwight Howard got one). Upon receiving the award, LeBron told the members of the audience in attendance that he was really just doing it for the Kia (referring to the car given to the recipient of the award), and that he had visions of driving their fine SUV to motivate himself while he was playing on the court. OK, that never actually happened, but it’s funny to think that a guy who drives a six-figure Ferrari to the event is getting a $27,000 car for free. Right, because that’s just what he needs.

LeBron actually accepted the award at his high school in Akron, praised his teammates and said that it was their award though it would be kept at LeBron’s house. I pretty much have to agree with Jimmy from SI’s Extra Mustard who wrote: “unless your team is playing the Cavs, how can you not like LeBron James? The guy accepted his MVP trophy at his high school yesterday, and gave each of his teammates a new camera.” He seems like a pretty classy guy, and the same can actually be said for most of the players involved in the MVP race. Now that he’s 24 and already won his first MVP, the logical question is to ask how many more can he win?

I think MVPs are hard to come by because you never know what’s going to draw the attention of the media and you never know when they’ll grow tired of rewarding a guy for doing the same thing year after year. You also never know when they’ll give it to someone else just because “the guy finally deserves one.” If I had to make a guess about LeBron, I’d say he’s due for four or five MVPs in his career. I’m just hoping he doesn’t wind up teaming up with another star player like Wade or even a guy like Bosh — that would be totally unfair.

By the way, nice to see that Mike Brown dressed up for the ceremony.

Ron Artest Wants to Know if You Think His New Mohawk Is Hot

Gotta love Ron Ron. First he meets with Craig Sager to say that Brandon Roy was the best guy he’s played against. Apparently unfazed by the backlash from that interview, he met with Craig yet again, this time to show off his new do. In case you missed Game 1 between the Rockets and Lakers, Ron Artest was sporting a mohawk with some designs carved into the sides, including the Rockets logo. As NBA tipoff shares with us, Artest just wants to know if you think the cut is hot:

I would say that Anthony Mason definitely approves. I’m not gonna lie either, that is kinda hot — you know, as far as Artest haircuts go. I think the Lakers might have to lose on purpose just so the world can see what his inverted mohawk will look like. Skeets has more on the Artest ‘do at Ball Don’t Lie.