Jim Buss responds to horse racing reports and makes himself sound worse

8/22/13 in NBA   |   natsaar   |   160 respect

August 10, 2012; El Segundo, CA, USA;   Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard stands between Jeanie Buss and Jim Buss as he holds his jersey during a press conference held to introduce the three-time defensive player of the year who was aquired in a four-team trade from the Orlando Magic. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY SportsThere has been a report floating around for years about Jim Buss streaming horse races at the 2012 Nike Hoop Summit while he was supposed to be scouting.

According to Ric Bucher, Buss said:

"Give me a time and a date. Chances are I was watching my mom's horse run. Either that or it was a really big race. I do love my mom dearly and she loves horses. I do, too, and worked with them for quite a few years. It's in my blood. I have zero problem watching a horse race for 2 1/2 minutes during a two-hour game, especially while other GMs are asleep at games or socializing in the back hallways. I went to the trouble of flying up to Portland to be at the game, not watch horse racing."


It’s not that I’m out to get Jim here, because I think he’s done a better job than people give him credit for (never forget the Chris Paul trade wasn’t his fault). However, there are some troubling things here.

It’s true that other GMs may not watch these games in their entirety, but a person should never judge themselves based on what other people are doing. Everyone’s parent has said to them at some point, “If everyone was jumping off a bridge, would you jump too?”

This is that same principle.

Another problem is that he says he “went to the trouble” of getting to the game. Went to the trouble?! As if doing his job was a total inconvenience. There were people there, fans, who “went to the trouble” of paying money to see a team that he helped put together play on the court.

It is this exact attitude that keeps people from supporting Jim and saying that he feels entitled to things.

It’s also this attitude that makes people like Jeanie more than her brother. Jim works from home, whereas Jeanie goes “to the trouble” of coming into the office every day.

If you’re a basketball player, there are days when you don’t want to go to work. If you see your owner, or boss, there, it convicts you to go. If he or she isn’t there though, you feel like the person doesn’t really care about the team as much. (see: Dwight Howard leaves LA Lakers).

The final thing is that he should at least look like he’s interested. Owners glad handing in the hallways still look like they’re having a good time and enjoying the game of basketball. Jim sitting by himself, streaming a horse race only further portrays him as a recluse who would rather be doing other things.

t’s interesting that he says horse racing is in his blood and not basketball. I can almost guarantee you it’s in Jeanie’s.

Until now, I’ve remained fairly in the middle about Jim, because I don't personally know him, and I'm not in any of the meetings he has. However, these comments make him sound entitled, unenthusiastic and a bit resentful of the position he’s been thrust in.
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