This Week's List
• Two facts: (1) more NBA teams have their fortunes immediately affected by the draft than in any other sport; (2) in terms of coverage and overall interest, the NBA draft compares to the NFL draft the way attendance at Marlin games compares to attendance at Yankee games.
• One thing that hurts the NBA: Coaches and GMs seem preoccupied with detailing players' deficiencies, rather than extolling their virtues.
• Two examples, from both ends of the draft: (1) Adam Morrison, expected to be taken near the top, is considered a one-dimensional player who doesn't play defense and might not be able to create his shot in the NBA; (2) Leon Powe, expected to be taken in the second round, is an undersized power forward who is a great rebounder but doesn't have a midrange jumper.
• Bottom line: Both guys do things.
• Tell me again why we, as proud Americans, should be disappointed in our team's failure to get out of pool play: The randomness of the penalty calls, the idiocy of the slap-fighting players -- yeah, we're really missing out big on this whole World Cup phenomenon.
• By the way: Looking at the World Cup refereeing, it occurred to me that maybe Paul Tagliabue is in charge of assigning and schooling these guys.
• Never before has failure been so preordained: Isiah Thomas, coach of the Knicks.
• Looking at Isiah sitting there listening to James Dolan tell him, on camera, that he has one year to clean up his own mess reminded me of one other famous televised interview: Mike Tyson and Robin Givens on "60 Minutes."
• We only hear about these guys once a year, but this year's College World Series put a spotlight on one guy who's worth rooting for beyond the end of the final game: Pat Casey, head coach, Oregon State.
• Think Kenny Lofton in his prime, only with power: One guy rapidly on his way to becoming a big star is Tigers center fielder Curtis Granderson.
• Not that a tall pile always means truth, but damn this pile is getting tall: Lance Armstrong, fighting allegations again, and this time some of them are coming from Greg LeMond, who claims Lance threatened his life.
• And finally, sometimes we criticize the sports world for being a parallel universe, then something appears that makes you realize the alleged real world can get pretty funky, too: A headline Monday read, "New Orleans merchants terrorized by transvestite gang."
Tim Keown is a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine. Sound off to Page 2 here.