--Breaking news on the LA Times web site, as Dylan Hernandez reports that Joe Torre has officially been hired as manager of the Dodgers.
"When you look at his resume and what he's done and the market he's done it in, certainly, you have to start from there," Dodgers GM Ned Colletti said.
MLB rules require that all teams interview a minority for managerial positions, but the Dodgers were reportedly granted an exemption because of their hiring record in other areas of the front office. Also, I'm sure MLB wanted to avoid a situation similar to what the Detroit Lions dealt with a few years ago when they hired Steve Mariucci. Everyone knew the Lions were going to hire Mariucci, so several minority coaches turned down interview invitations.
With Torre in place as manager, one could argue that LA now has the best active coach/manager in basketball (Phil Jackson) and baseball (Torre). At the very least, these are the two active coach/managers with the most championship rings in their respective sport. Now all we need is an NFL team and Bill Belichick.
--Bulls GM John Paxson did his best to shoot down the plethora of Kobe-to-Chicago rumors that we've been hearing over the past few weeks.
"There's not a deal done," Paxson said today. "There's not going to be a deal done. All the things that were out there were really unfair to all of us who were trying to do our jobs. The misinformation ... I think gets in the way of the process. It's just such a complicated thing and we kind of put it to rest now."
"I think today sends a message to our players that nothing's going to be done," he said.
No rumor that I heard regarding players like Ron Artest, Ben Wallace, Luol Deng, etc. seemed remotely plausible to me, but of course, I'm not on the phone either. Still, Paxson's comments underscore the gargantuan complexity of any Kobe Bryant trade.
Magic Johnson is right about both management and Kobe being responsible for the circus that we've been reading about everyday. But since a deal isn't feasible at this time, it's not worth the time and angst of discussing it right now. Kobe and the Lakers are just going to need to get along and work as well as possible with each other.