Wednesday, August 03, 2005

[NBA] Clash of Titans

Bonzi Wells' best friend John Canzano is at it again. Read the story yourself.

It's a scene that I would pay to watch.

Centers Ha Seung Jin and Nedzad Sinanovic have been locked in a gym together since mid-June, competing. Ha, under contract for two more years, came back from his offseason visit to South Korea out of shape, then was hampered by tendinitis in his knee, and to compound matters, he's been getting schooled by the 7-foot-4 Sinanovic, a 22-year old rookie from Bosnia.

The two have been tussling and tangling on the court. There has been ribbing and verbal exchanges. And as the players usually do at the end of a workout, that particular Friday the two were shooting free throws together in silence.

Peaceful enough.

That is, until Sinanovic made his final free throw, then retrieved the basketball and held it. Ha walked over and snatched it back. Then, Sinanovic said something under his breath and two men -- 7-4 and 7-3 -- ended up on the ground in a pile of wildly swinging elbows and fists.

The fight was broken up by Blazers staffers, and insiders said Ha, who got punched, was left shouting, "I'll sue! I'll sue!"

The two were escorted to different areas of the practice facility, and normally the story would end here. Except Ha's neutral corner was the team weight room. And so he picked up one of those wooden poles that players use to stretch and went after Sinanovic, who blocked one swing with his forearm but took another in the ribs before someone ripped the pole (think: closet dowel) from Ha's hands and threw it across the courts.


The Ha-Sinanovic bout was about good competition, and frustration, and boiling points. And (Blazers GM) Nash said the players were fine with each other and even hanging out 24 hours after one was trying to shish kebob the other.

Ha's agent, John Kim, said the Blazers haven't contacted him about the incident, so he figured it was "nothing that serious." And Nash declined to comment directly on the brawl, because you're "damned if you do, damned if you don't,"

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