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Monday Morning Links

It's ugly in the LA papers today.

The 36-point loss matched the sixth-worst defeat in franchise history. The Lakers' worst loss ever came in a 129-83 blowout at Portland in January 1995.

They also were saved from matching the lowest-scoring game in their history when Jordan Farmar's jumper went in with 6.9 seconds left. The Lakers scored just 70 points in a 19-point loss at Cleveland in November 2002.

"We were embarrassed today," Jackson said. "That was an embarrassing loss for us. There's no excuse for the way we played. I don't care if it's the first day of Daylight Savings Time. It's still not a good enough excuse."
Phil Jackson went on to say that Jesus could have played for them an it wouldn't matter and that Kobe didn't let his teammates get involved in the first half. I love that Dallas is capable of completely demoralizing any team, especially the Lakers.

It even left Kobe reminiscing about his years with Shaq.
"It looked familiar," Kobe Bryant said of the Mavs' dominance this season. "That's a team out there playing with a purpose, playing hard at both ends. It's definitely recognizable."

Sefko talked to Phil Jackson about 70 wins.
"It's quite a compliment to any team to accomplish that," Jackson said before Sunday's game against the Mavericks. "Their record alone, they've set themselves apart.

"But the last six weeks are tough. You're playing all your conference, division rivals. So it's going to be tough. They still got nine losses. If they get through the season with 14, 15 losses, it's an unbelievable season."

"[That] team that was on a tear and we ended up having an injury that kind of slowed us down," Jackson said. "But my owner was concerned that I was pushing the team too hard to get to 70 wins. And I said, they got to have a head of their own. They have to have that desire to play. And somehow the momentum and energy around teams that are winning is a pretty unbelievable energy. They stay out of trouble. There's not a lot of injuries. They all want to participate."
Garcia has a mini-article about 70 and the remaining schedule


Art Garcia writes that the Mavs don't see any available free agent options that make sense for this team and says the Croshere's good play of late reinforces the idea that the roster has enough talent already.


Question for anybody who was watching Bob & Mark instead of ESPN last night: Did they mention why Maurice Ager never played?


Around the NBA: Yao Ming yesterday: 37 points, 7 rebounds, 4 blocks, 3 assists.

Sounds like Isiah Thomas will get a contract extension...