SALT LAKE CITY – Now that the Jazz are in a place from whence none has ever escaped, it's probably time to do something drastic.
I don't mean mobilize the National Guard or anything, but close.
Since no basketball team has overcome a 3-0 deficit, and the Jazz are facing the vastly talented Los Angeles Lakers, they have little choice but to do what the Lakers do: Put on some Chanel sunglasses and Robert Cavalli jeans and try living large.
And while they're at it, they need to appear in some tabloids and on Access Hollywood.
What do they have to lose?
Time for a re-take, people! People! Back on the set! I'm trying to create, here!
Normally, I roll my eyes when the Lakers show up. Did you see that photo shoot in the Los Angeles Times magazine, last week, of Kobe Bryant? Dude was dressed all in white. In one shot he had this funky brimmed hat and bow tie; in another he was wearing a draped hood and some sort of tasseled scarf, not to mention a low-plunging neckline that might have looked OK on Jennifer Lopez, but on Kobe it just looked strange.
Still, the Lakers live off that edgy stuff. Then there's the Jazz. They're as glamorous as a Sousaphone. The only photo spread Jerry Sloan would consider is in Farm Journal.
The Jazz are NBA players, so they'll occasionally make gossipy news, like the time Andrei Kirlenko's wife said she her husband was entitled to one extramarital dalliance a year. Carlos Boozer made a ripple when he rented his house to Prince.
But most of the time, these guys look and act a lot like regular people, except with with nicer cars. With the series the way it is, the Jazz should heed the Del Taco commercial: Go bold or go home. They could begin by hooking Kyle Korver up with celebrity Kim Kardashian. That would put him in step with the Lakers' Lamar Odom, who married Kim's sister Khloe.
The gossip rags would love it – and it might land Korver a reality TV gig.
If you don't think this sort of celebrity blending works, look how well Odom usually plays against the Jazz.
Second, several Jazz players should consider getting arrested. It adds credibility. Bryant and Ron Artest each had trouble with the law, several years ago. Odom, also years ago, was suspended for violating the league's anti-drug policy.
Being a little bit — or a lot — bad may not hurt.
The Jazz should also try going into the stands, a la Artest in Indiana, and wailing on a fan or two. I have a few in mind, some of them the Jazz's own.
Artest picked 37 as his number, to coincide with the number of weeks Michael Jackson's Thriller topped the charts. Does this mean Paul Millsap should wear No. 12, to commemorate the number of Grammys fellow Louisianan Aaron Neville has won?
Another nice touch would be to get a milkshake named after you. Artest has one in his honor at a place in L.A. named Millions of Milkshakes. His shake is called "Ron Artest's Defensive Booster Shake" and it includes blueberry, peach, pineapple, and protein in soy milk, with non-dairy ice cream.
Trust L.A. to call it a milkshake, but fink out on the ice cream.
(In fairness, Millions also has a "Donny Decadence Shake" named after Donny Osmond; yes, it has real ice cream. So give the place credit. Nobody appreciates milkshakes like Utahns.)19 comments on this story
Sloan would do well to borrow a page from the Zen Master himself, Phil Jackson, and do some deep meditation before Game 4. It wouldn't hurt to have a player or two post some anti-Sloan rants on Twitter, the way Artest did with Jackson, this week, just to liven things up.
Oh, and one more thing: Arrive for the game in a helicopter, like Kobe does.
It's not the Jazz's M.O. to be sure. But sometimes the difference between failure and success is mostly a matter of attitude.
And don't forget the scarf.