Frantz: Dirk, T-Mac choked and boxing still exists

A little of this, and a lot of that…. Game 7, Houston Rockets- Utah Jazz first-round playoff series. Final minute of the game, Utah leading by four. Houston’s Tracy McGrady cuts it to two with a layup with just ten seconds left.

 Houston has to foul, right? Not exactly. The Rockets let more than eight seconds tick away before fouling, inexplicably allowing the game, the series and their season to end. Why? They had to wait for one of Utah’s white guys to get the ball. Fouling a black guy would be racist.

» About the only thing more ridiculous than two Ivy League schools discovering that a league comprised of roughly 80 percent black players would have more fouls called on black players than white ones is the fact that it took them 13 years to do it.

» This just in, courtesy of two pocket-protector-wearers from Princeton: More penalty strokes are assessed against female players on the LPGA Tour than male players.

» After Dallas Mavericks superstar Dirk Nowitzki revealed that he’d be content to settle for whatever the Warriors gave him in Dallas’ historic first-round playoff collapse, rather than attacking and dictating the action for the 67-win Mavericks, NBA officials were feverishly working to fix the engraving on this year’s MVP trophy to accurately reflect the soon-to-be recipient: Dirk Noheartzki.

» Plenty of questions for Dallas coach Avery Johnson to answer following the Mavs’ embarrassing defeat — starting with why he

didn’t play center Erick Dampier for 48 minutes a night in the series. Could it be that he wasn’t aware of the seven years Dampier spent earning his reputation as a Warriors’ killer?

» So-called boxing experts and sporting pundits are weighing in loud and long over the Sports Illustrated headline, “The Fight to Save Boxing”, previewing the much-hyped Oscar De La Hoya-Floyd Mayweather Jr. bout on Saturday night. It’s a big fight, they say, but no where near enough to save boxing. Breaking news for the boxing hacks: A new expression has just been inserted into the English vernacular. It’s called a double-entendre. Go ahead and look it up, you know, while boxers and promoters continue their efforts to “fight to save boxing.”

» Saturday night in Vegas proved one thing about Floyd: He sure is pretty, boy.

» The best pound-for-pound boxer going today reminded us why the fight game was once known as the “Sweet Science.” He didn’t bully and he didn’t allow himself to be bullied. He didn’t stand around waiting to throw a big haymaker with “murderous intentions” and he didn’t run either. All he did was put on a boxing clinic. An exhibition of precision, tactical planning, defense and heart. And he did it in the face of an enormous, partisan crowd screaming for a great champion to knock him out.

» Boxing needed a night like Saturday, not to save the sport, but just to remind casual fans that it’s still here. Just to show that when a fight is properly arranged and promoted and two true champions put everything they’ve got on the line, it can still inspire moments of greatness.

» Also Saturday night, and perhaps more importantly, we learned that a close decision in a title fight doesn’t have to be a controversial one. The scorecards were close, but unless your name is Oscar, you know full well that the right man got the decision. Let’s pray for a rematch in six months — when the bruises are healed but the memories are still fresh.

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