Did Yao Throw Artest Under The Bus To Bucher?

There’s been a palpable euphoria here in Los Angeles since the Lakers locked down free agent Ron Artest last week. Purple (& Gold) Kool-aiders of course love the deal, but Wednesday ESPN NBA reporter Ric Bucher quietly made a serious claim about Artest on middle-of-the-night national radio that might delight the Laker haters among you.

Yao Ming Ric Bucher

(Co-Author of Yao biography says Rockets covered up Artest’s bad behavior)

While talking to late-night, White Castle drive-thru companion and ESPN Radio host Jason Smith, Bucher said that Artest has not cleaned up his act as a person.

So why don’t we all know that Artest hasn’t (apparently) changed his volatile, oft-erratic ways off the court? According to Bucher, the Rockets were exceptional at covering up Artest’s alleged indiscretions.

Hmmm. Now where do you think Bucher would get that kind of information?

Read more…

ESPN: Shaq-Suns Deal Done Soon As Wednesday

Ric Bucher of ESPN reports tonight that Shaq is flying to Phoenix in the morning to take a physical and if everything proceeds without incident, the trade between the Heat and Suns will go through. That is, Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks to the Heat for O’Neal. But, of course, consider the source.

More from ESPN.com, SOUTH FLORIDA SUN-SENTINEL, MIAMI HERALD, ARIZONA REPUBLIC and EAST VALLEY TRIBUNE.

Kobe Bryant May Buy Michael Jordan Chicago Mansion

WHY BUCHER NEVER HAS TO WORRY ABOUT EMPLOYMENT: Michael Sneed of the CHICAGO SUN-TIMES has the ironic news today that despite the apparent trade talk breakdown between the Bulls and Lakers, “(Kobe) Bryant may be purchasing basketball legend Michael Jordan’s massive home in Highland Park.

Michael Jordan Chicago Mansion Gate

The real estate rumor mill is grinding out grist that could add more credence to the word the L.A. Lakers superstar may wind up playing in Chicago.

Ric Bucher

It’s definitely a move that make sense, since Bryant already has a doorman-in-waiting.

Blog-A-Roni: Public Votes On Best USC O.C.

• INSIDE SOCAL gets offensive in asking USC fans which Trojan coordinator they would prefer:

USC coordinator vote

• HUGGING HAROLD REYNOLDS reminds you there’s no crying in baseball, as Yankee broadcaster Suzyn Waldman tears up about Joe Girardi’s hiring.• THE LAZY EYE OF STUART SCOTT gets down with Hall & Oates, who congratulate Adrian Peterson on his big day.

• FULL COURT PRESS finds Ric Bucher batting 1.000, as the ESPN analyst aggravates Pistons president Joe Dumars with his incorrect Kobe-to-Detroit trade rumors:

Joe Dumars DVD

• JEN’S FREE THROWS comes on down, as Grant Hill & his mom are ready to play the Family Feud.• PART MULE offers an olive branch, as the U.N. wants everyone to call a truce during the Beijing Olympics.

Ric Bucher Owns Longest Losing Streak In Sports Reporting History

DRAT, GUESS MY KOBE WAS WRONG ABOUT THAT ONE TOO! As a public service, we wanted to run down the current longest losing streaks in sports for you:

A) Chicago Cubs’ 99 Years without World Series title
B) Florida International’s 20 straight losses
C) Navy’s 43-game losing streak vs. Notre Dame
D) Ric Bucher’s Kobe Bryant trade predictions

Ric Bucher

Honestly, we’ve speculated on some things over the years that didn’t turn out the way we thought they would, but is there a respirating speciman outside the 860 that doesn’t emit a giggle every time they see or hear the sunbedded-soul patch give us another of his NBA *scoops*? This is a man who makes Peter Vecsey and Sam Smith resemble Hal 9000.