Earlier today, Orlando’s Dwight Howard became the youngest player in NBA history to record at least 20 points, 20 blocks and 5 blocks in a playoff game, as the Magic dispatched the Raptors, 114-100. Even earlier, Toronto’s Chris Bosh became the youngest player in NBA history to be unfavorably compared to Manute Bol. From the Toronto Star’s Doug Smith :
Chris Bosh has lashed out at a “classless” American broadcaster he feels crossed the line in a personal attack.
Stephen A. Smith, a prominent ESPN analyst known for his loud delivery and over-the-top commentary, compared Bosh to former NBAer Manute Bol on Friday, chastising the Raptor all-star for playing soft and being unable to lead his team to any significant level of success. The comments about the team and the game aren’t what irked Bosh, it was dragging in the name of Bol, a 7-foot-6 beanpole, who was more an oddity than a factor in his career.
“If you have respect for someone, you expect that same respect back,” Bosh said yesterday. “If you’re a classless person like that, I mean, I guess that shows how you are, what kind of person you really are.
“If you criticize basketball, criticize the game, criticize the team but don’t do anything personal.”
But Bosh said he doesn’t need to use Smith’s comments to get him more motivated for the series against the Orlando Magic.
“I don’t have to prove anything to that guy, plain and simple,” said Bosh. “If that’s what he wants to do, that’s what he’s going to do. If that’s what makes him happy, to try to bring other people down, good for him.
“If LeBron (James) wasn’t doing so well, he’d probably dog him, too. If Dwight (Howard) wasn’t averaging 20 and 10, he’d talk bad about him.”
Well, yeah. That’s exactly what Smith’s paid to do. But the Bol comparison is hardly rooted in statistical or stylistic evidence.