I guess it’s not that surprising that the Los Angeles Lakers have started off the NBA season undefeated - they return all the pieces from the Western Conference champions, with a healthy Andrew Bynum to boot. But the Atlanta Hawks? Really? In its own way, it’s almost as improbable as when the Houston Rockets went on that 22-game winning streak last season.
Clearly, it has to end at some point, and you would think sooner rather than later. But there the Hawks were last night, going into Chicago and taking out the Bulls 113-108 behind a career-high 27 points and 17 rebounds by Al Horford. And their starting PF Josh Smith isn’t even playing!
Of course, tonight is a bit of a litmus test, since they are playing the defending champion Boston Celtics. Win that game, and then we’ll really have something. As for the other undefeated team, the Lakers matched the Hawks (who often do you read that?) by beating the Mavericks 106-99. Meanwhile, Phil Jackson is so thrilled that he’s thinking about not coming back next season.
Other live, local and late-breaking sports news:
- The BALTIMORE SUN reports that the Orioles are giving their uniforms and logo a makeover. Michael Kors thinks that they are “fresh and flirty” but Nina Garcia thinks they are “tired and stale.” What will Heidi say?
- Remember Michael Hodges, the ex-Arena Football player who was arrested last week after going nuts while trying to get on a plane? KNDO-TV reports that jail apparently isn’t treating him too well, as he’s facing additional charges after allegedly biting a prison officer’s finger off during a scuffle.
- The rematch of last season’s Stanley Cup was a doozy, says the PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: the Penguins beat the Red Wings 7-6 in OT on Ruslan Fedotenko’s game-winner.
- The LA TIMES says that Lakers fans have more reason to celebrate beyond the team’s success: their local TV affiliate KCAL has decided to stop the practice of tape-delaying East Coast games this season, which was totally pointless and maddeningly infuriating for today’s DVR-taping, instant-score-updating sports fan.
- The BOSTON GLOBE has good news and bad news for Patriots fans on the Tom Brady front: he is back with the team while rehabbing, but is still being slowed by the lingering post-surgery knee infection.
- A good story from the golf world: a contingent of PGA Tour players, including Woody Austin, Jason Gore and Bob Tway, are heading to the Gulf Coast to play in a charity pro-am tournament to benefit housing needs for people still impacted by Hurricane Katrina, forgoing their usual appearance fees and other perks.
- Your new Raiders’ scapegoat? Offensive coordinator Greg Knapp, who has been relieved of his play-calling duties by Al Davis. Expect an exciting overhead slide show shortly.
- And speaking of Bay Area scapegoats: PRO FOOTBALL TALK says that head coach Mike Singletary and offensive coordinator Mike Martz have found one for the 49ers’ loss to the Cardinals on Monday night. Not poor clock management or ineffectual play calling - it was getting bad information from officials.
- First the Idaho football team plays with “I”s on their butts, now the IDAHO STATESMAN notes that players are calling the cops and having other players arrested after fights.
- If any college football team is going to have a uniform with wings, it has to be the Oregon Ducks, as reported by NIKE BLOG. But I would think that Red Bull would be a better sponsor.