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Leon Smith Update

In the latest on the Leon Smith saga, Leon
is out of the hospital and his friends are mad at the Mavericks,
saying they
marooned Leon and left him to fend for himself. Harry Edwards, Berkeley
sociologist, says that the NBA is dipping too deep into the talent pool (true)
and will have to shoulder some social services if this continues (never happen).

What amazes us, endlessly, is the idea that first, kids are entitled to an
NBA career based on what they did in high school, and second, the presumption
that the NBA is going to give up on being a business and start babysitting
ill-formed, or ill-tempered teenagers.

The NBA represents,or should anyway, the highest level of
professionalism. It is that way simply because the competition is so
brutal. People see Kevin Garnett or Kobe Bryant dunking and scoring, but
the heart of the NBA is in guys like Joe Dumars and Rusty LaRue and Adrian
Griffin. There's no doubt that Leon Smith has talent, nor is there any
doubt his life, so far, is a series of tragedies. But come on. The sheer
competitive pressure of the NBA will not allow the Mavericks to indulge him.
There are a hundred guys out there right now who can do for this team what Smith
can do, without the distractions. Just to name two, Antonio Lang or
Taymon Domzalski could both come in, show up, work hard to improve, and come in
and rebound and play some defense. Leon's friends need to quit deluding
him. If he wants to play in the NBA, now or ever, he'd better start listening
and bust his ass.