Lakers – Remembering the 2000 Championship
By Kevin Brent
Total and complete ecstasy.
Throw all the profoundly spectacular “e” words together and still it is difficult to properly surmise the championship Laker season of 1999-2000.
For those who understand, recollection is simple. All it takes is a few key phrases to release the floodgate of memories from this past campaign.
The team’s cohesion.
Phil Jackson’s stoicism and unwavering poise which balanced the performance and character of every member of the squad.
This holds true even for a tormented small forward named Glen Rice, whom I contend knows more now about the game of basketball and about himself than he ever did previously.
A lot has happened since the conclusion of that glorious season.
A starting forward has been released and new one has been employed.
Jerry West has released himself from the torment of stress none of us can truly understand.
Other teams have gotten stronger.
They have gotten bigger.
Portland believes they will beat us.
Miami and New York apparently believe them because they are re-tooling with Rasheed Wallace, Shawn Kemp and Scottie Pippen in mind.
San Antonio has two healthy towers instead of just one.
Sacramento and Seattle retain strongholds on the second tier of playoff teams lusting for respect and a Laker upset that could shake the foundation of the league.
With that in mind, our fervor over the recently completed Championship run has vanished faster than a seven dollar bottle of Corona at the Fox Sports Bar inside the Staples Center.
And isn’t that sad?
With all that was done last year, with all we accomplished (by we, I still mean ourselves and the Lakers), and only a week or two was given to unadulterated celebration before next season was looming and big decisions had to be made quickly.
Wouldn’t another week or two been nice?
Maybe even a month.
Just for reflection, mind you. To relive each Kobe slash and dunk, each “gimme” Shaq had when he got the ball four feet from the hoop, those three pointers Glen Rice pulled the trigger on when he was hot and you, I, and the rest of the league just knew he would not miss.
That’s gone, and now all we have is the stress of repeating, the pain of watching teams all around us restock, and a fragile Laker nucleus, just constructed last year, hold together through all the turmoil.
It is almost too much for a true Laker fan to bear.
Let the season begin already so we can relax.
So we can enjoy.
So we can win it all.