Breckenridge/Devon O’Neil: How to make friends in the NBA, by Josh Howard | SkyHiNews.com

Breckenridge/Devon O’Neil: How to make friends in the NBA, by Josh Howard

The timing was terrible. That was the main problem. But when Dallas Mavericks forward Josh Howard went on Michael Irvin’s radio show hours before his team’s critical first-round series Game 3 and told the audience that he smokes pot liberally in the offseason, something else he said stuck out more than the poor timing.

Among his disclosures to Irvin (of course Irvin was involved), Howard issued this one: “Most of the players in the league use marijuana …”

Ouch.

Not that it was any kind of news break. One of professional sports’ most poorly concealed and accepted secrets is the high frequency of pot smoking among NBA players. Which is why Howard’s timing ” with his team down 0-2 to Utah and the season hanging in the balance ” caused more of a storm than that statement.

In fact, I didn’t see one news outlet make a big deal about the part on most of the league’s players smoking pot.

However, you can bet more than a few players around the league rolled their eyes at Howard when they heard what he’d said. In a don’t-ask, don’t-tell world, full disclosure doesn’t win you the same admiration it does in the rest of life. …

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So much for Jose Theodore leading the Avs to the shiny silver promised land. Just as the veteran netminder caught fire in the first-round upset of Minnesota, he appears since then to have been hit by a dose of retardant like they drop from planes to combat wildland blazes.

Theodore gave up eight goals on just 36 shots before being pulled in games 1 and 2 against the top-seeded, royally despised Red Wings last week, leaving the door open for backup Peter Budaj to start in last night’s Game 3. …

The Roger Clemens soap opera got much juicier Monday with a brutally detailed New York Daily News story on his alleged 10-year affair with country singer Mindy McCready ” a fling that began when she was singing karaoke in a Florida bar at age 15.

The Rocket is looking more and more like Bonds every day. …

Dick Trickle still should be considered the all-time worst name to have as a pro athlete in a masculine sport (NASCAR in his case), but for rookie star Evan Longoria of the Tampa Bay Rays, you have to believe locker-room life is not much easier. Not when there’s a certain Desperate Housewife who carries the same name, sans the “n.” …

Week in Review: Did it really take three games for Tracy McGrady to score a fourth-quarter basket in the Rockets-Jazz series? … Did an AHL goalie really make 98 saves in a losing playoff effort? … Is Chad Johnson’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, really pathetic enough to go on YouTube and beg for the Bengals to trade his client? (Since the answer to all of these is yes, why couldn’t Rosenhaus do it on ESPN, like he did for Terrell Owens?) … And finally, did Sydney Dean really think he could hustle the feds like he hustled Billy Hoyle? …

Also, while we’re at it, did the Nuggets really think nobody would notice if they stopped trying Sunday? …

In case you care: Rock Racing’s Tyler Hamilton ended up 92nd in the GC standings at the seven-stage Tour de Georgia, finishing more than 41 minutes back of winner Kanstantsin Siutsou on Sunday. …

Like to know why one of baseball’s biggest surprises, Oakland, is tied for first in the AL West at 16-10? It’s not the A’s dismal .250 batting average or their even more woeful 12 homers in 26 games (exactly 30 percent of the league leader). It’s the pitching: Oakland has given up only 92 runs all year and leads the AL in ERA (3.22) by nearly a half-run. …

In parting, the one thing that disgusts me even more than the Dwyane Wade-is-dating-Star Jones rumor (c’mon, D-Wade) is when fast food joints start claiming to be health food stores.

Sorry, Wendy’s, but you’re not “waaaaay better than fast food” just because you don’t freeze your burgers. You’re fast food. Deal with it.

” Breckenridge resident Devon O’Neil’s $0.02 column runs Tuesdays. He can be reached at devononeil@hotmail.com.

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