Bill Simmons of ESPN is the best after capturing the off-beat, ridiculous spectacle that is professional sports. In his diary of the 2006 NBA draft, he snapshots the event in all of its glory. For those who have followed the Titanic that is Isiah Thomas' captain-ing of the Knicks into an iceberg of epic proportions, the excerpt that folllows is worth a chuckle.
9:36 -- There are those moments in sports when you expect something great, and then it actually happens. And then there are those rare moments in sports when you expect something great, and something even greater happens. This was one of those moments: The Knicks on the clock, the crowd pushing for Marcus Williams, and then ...
--Stern: "With the 20th pick, the New York Knicks select ... Renaldo Balkman."
(Crowd explodes in horror.)
--Stern (over the boos): "Renaldo is not here."
--Patrick (without missing a beat): "And it's probably a good thing."
(Shot of a beaten-down Spike Lee laughing hysterically.)
9:36 -- That was fantastic. Everyone kept e-mailing me to write about Isiah and the Knicks last week ... what else was there to say? OF COURSE Isiah was meant to coach this team as his final job in the NBA before retiring to a life of greeting people at casinos and doing informercials. If somebody clogs your toilet, you ask him to clean up the mess. That's just the way life works. I'm telling you, we're going to remember the Isiah/Knicks Era the same way we remember things like Enron, the Hindenberg and the Bay of Pigs. It's reached that level. I don't know what else to say. Honestly. I have Knicks fans e-mailing me every day asking me if it's OK to root against their own team. What else can you say at this point?
(Wait, I know ... Renaldo Balkman!)
9:37 -- A stammering Bilas sets off three minutes of Isiah-bashing by saying, "This to me is a stunner, I'm stunned. This is a second-round player. Nobody else would have taken him in the first round," followed by Greg Anthony using the word "befuddling" and Stephen A. (maybe for the first time ever) admitting, "I'm almost speechless."
I mean, when Stephen A. is almost speechless ...
9:39 -- Who's going to be the first one to make the obligatory "Is it possible that Isiah thought he was taking Rolando Blackman?" joke. Screw it, I'll do it.