Friday, December 17, 2004

More Malice at the Palace

This just in...the NBA just suspended Ron Artest for five more games after what happened last night.

But seriously, folks, will Paul Silas ever get another good egg roll in Cleveland again?

I'm getting flooded with e-mails today about the Paul Silas-Eric Snow showdown last night in Detroit. Here's what happened and then my take:

The Pistons started pressing in the second quarter. Snow had the ball and instead of dribbling through it, gave up and called timeout in the backcourt with 19 seconds on the shot clock. This displeased Silas. Then, after the long TNT TV timeout, Snow went to inbound the ball. You have to clear halfcourt by the time the clock hits 16, no matter what. But Snow passed the ball backwards to Anderson Varejao and it resulted in a turnover. This infuriated Silas.

He yanked Snow from the game. Snow explained to him no one was open. Silas didn't accept it. Then Snow, with his back turned, issued a profane statement that rhymes with duck. Silas then marched down, screamed him down despite Ira Newble and Scott Williams trying to be cooler heads and kicked him off the floor.

OK, based on everything I saw, and I was sitting about 20 feet away, Silas just simply over reacted. I think Snow's curse was out of general frustration. He wanted to stay in the game. He's a competitor. But Silas is a stern man who doesn't like to be challenged and he went after him just like he went after Newble last season in Atlanta when Newble mouthed him and Silas called him a "hip-hop blank-blank (rhymes with other sucker)."

It was made worse after the game when Silas blew up at Columbus Dispatch writer Bill Pfieffer while cameras and tape recorders were rolling, unlike last season with Newble, which caught the media by surprise. I asked the first question about Snow and Silas said he didn't want to talk about it. I don't think Bill intended to cross him by questioning deeper, but he made the mistake of saying the word "Snow" again, which set the Grizzly bear off.

Now, Snow is a consummate pro. He is a leader. He is a coach on the floor, not a cancer. He needs to say he's sorry to Silas and Silas needs to say he's sorry to him. Make it a speed bump and move on. Both guys are old pros and they need to handle it like they are.

We won't find out anything until tomorrow, the Cavaliers have canceled practice today.

Stay tuned,