(in what can only be called a Joe Montana moment, the Bulls’ Tyson Chandler stops what he’s doing during the final seconds against Cleveland after noticing Peter Bonerz sitting in the 15th row)

Since I was one of those who thought Scott Skiles was yelling his way out of town after the Bulls’ 0-9 start, I can’t eat enough crow (with BBQ sauce, please) after watching what a resiliant, young Chicago squad has accomplished, last night’s OT win over the Cavs being just the latest example. Says the New York Post’s Peter Vescey in his Friday column,

Things are going so well in the Windy City, Jerry Krause should be back any day now to break it up.

Adds Vescey on other current events around the league,

From what I hear from Larry Brown loyalists, he’s not completely healthy (bladder trouble following hip surgery), yet feels obligated to return to the Pistons bench tonight against the Clippers . . . still equipped with a catheter.

Asked if Brown continues to function with the apparatus, I was quickly waved off by one of his confidants. “I’m not touching that! Literally or figuratively! You’ll have to ask Larry about that.”

Because of an unruly inclination to accentuate Gary Payton’s sinister side, I never picked up on the fact Little Noxious only missed four games in 15 prior seasons until reading the extraordinary statistic in a Boston newspaper.

It was casually reported, I might add. Conversely, we in the media never stopped glorifying John Stockton for his unearthly durability and inestimable pain threshold. Excluding the ’97-98 season when injury sidelined him 18 games, Stockton missed but four in his remaining 18. Payton’s attendance record is far more impressive. On balance, he didn’t always go straight home or back to his own hotel room after games.

Stockton, by the way, returned to the Delta Center Wednesday night at the Jazz unveiled an eight-foot statue of him outside the arena. The statue inside the arena is known as Carlos Boozer.

With the Lakers faltering down the stretch, I think Kobe Bryant is positioning himself for next year’s Comeback Executive of the Year.

Marvin Barnes was asked to commemorate tomorrow night’s commencement exercises of The Final Four in St. Louis by throwing out the first tire iron.