It is kind of weird being at the Forum. This iconic place, that I used to watch so much on TV, with all its glitz and glamor and history, is a straight-up dump! It’s like running into that girl you used to have a crush on in high school, then you see her later and she’s … not the girl you remember from high school.
They had the limos dropping off big-timers in front of the Forum Club. They brought back Jeffrey Osborne to do the National Anthem. The crowd was electric, from start to finish. Derek Fisher made a pre-game speech about coming “home again” that started a small frenzy.
Other than that, it was kind of sad. Sorry, my nostalgia gene isn’t as strong as most sports fans. It did seem to be a good reunion for those who frequented the place. The Forum Club was off the hook after the game.
Some of you already think I am the opposite of a genius. Today, I certainly gave you more fodder. I sit down at my courtside seat to start writing, then it hits me. I left my computer in the hotel. What’s more, my cell phone battery was in my computer bag. And of course my phone was dead. Yup, genius.
Corey Maggette started on Friday. So in three games, he’s started Azubuike, Morrow and Maggette. I have a feeling Curry is going to start tonight against the Suns.
Still, I wasn’t as mad as Stephen Jackson, who was so peeved that he was relieved from action. Jackson was in a heated match-up with Kobe in the first quarter. They were yapping, playing hard, etc. Jackson picked up five four fouls in fewer than eight minutes, which led to him popping off at the mouth and getting a T. Moments later, he picked up foul number five.
He checked out of the game. Next thing you know, he was gone from the bench. He never returned. I was told Nellie gave him the rest of the game off because he was frustrated and emotional.
So when I got Nellie after the game, I expected him to downplay it. I expected him to say he wanted to give his guy a break. It was no big deal. He wanted to play the youngsters anyway.
NELLIE: “I’m not going to comment on that.”
Of course, by the time I got to the locker room, Jackson was gone and his teammates were hush. Something’s up, I think.
Steph Curry was 1-for-7 with six points. In three preseason games, he’s shooting 8-for-32 from the field (25 percent), including 2-for-11 from 3-point range.
He said it was a matter of coming off the bench. Curry said he’s so used to warming up, then starting, which keeps his rhythm going.
CURRY: “You might miss your first shot, but you still have a rhythm.”
Tonight, Curry was visibly irritated by the shots he missed. He slapped his hands. He shook his head. He frowned. You could see his shooting woes starting to irritate him.
After the game, he showed much less concern.
He said in the first game, he said he took some shots and he knew they had no chance of them going in. Now, they feel much better, he said, even though they still aren’t dropping.
CURRY: “It’s starting to feel better. I’m missing more close than I was.”