Click through for photos from the White House premiere of Lifetime's The Road to Bountiful, the party for the season-four return of IFC's Portlandia and more events for the week of March 10.
Lakers, Jackson, Kobe KOd in Big D
The second attempt at a Phil Jackson-Kobe Bryant-Los Angeles Lakers threepeat went out with a whimper in Big D.
Had Mike Breen been calling the game on ABC, there would have been plenty of “bangs,” courtesy of Jason Terry (tying an NBA playoffs-best with nine trifectas out of 10 attempts) and Peja Stojakovic (six for six), who set the pace for the Dallas Mavericks’ record-tying 20 three-pointers in sweeping up the two-time defending champion Lakers on Sunday afternoon, 122-86. Reminiscent of LA’s last series-concluding loss — a 39-point pasting in Game 6 of the 2008 NBA Finals at the hands of their nemesis, the Boston Celtics — the Lakers were decimated by the Dirk Nowitski-led Mavericks, who sent Jackson into retirement far from on an historic note.
For those who couldn’t stand the smugness of the man famously dubbed “Big Chief Triangle” by now ABC analyst Jeff Van Gundy, they could perhaps take some measure of solace that he didn’t bring a 12th title with him to the happy hunting ground for retired NBA coaches.
For those who prefer to view Jackson as the “Zen Master,” the man who maximized the talents of Michael Jordan and Scotty Pippen to capture six titles in Chicago, and Bryant, a young Shaquille O’Neal and later Pau Gasol, to collect five other crowns in LA, Sunday’s flameout was certainly unexpected.
Love him or loathe him, Jackson certainly deserved a better farewell than the Lakers’ lack of effort and then having to watch Lamar Odom drill Nowitski on a pick and Andrew Bynum elbow an airborne Mavs point guard J.J. Barea early in the fourth period, long after the contest had been decided. The shirtless and classless Bynum — ironically accompanied by that the paragon of on-court decorum, Ron Artest, in his exit from American Airlines Center — may have ushered himself a ticket out Staples Center as well, with the Lakers figuring to reconfigure their roster.
The early exit by the popular Lakers certainly didn’t do David Stern, the NBA and broadcast partners ABC, ESPN –the Disney networks have exclusive coverage of the Western Conference finals this year, not to mention the Alphabet’s presentation of The Finals — and TNT — which through May 4 was on a blistering ratings pace and only had five telecast windows that compared unfavorably with their 2010 postseason counterparts — any favors with the Nielsens for the balance of the playoffs.
If the league’s ratings can absorb this early loss of the Lakers, then the NBA is truly fantastic.