David Kahn says he's "astonished" by the reaction to comments he made following Tuesday's draft lottery, and color me un-astonished.
I don't need to go into why his comments were wrong. Eric Freeman already summed up my thoughts on the subject expertly the next morning. What I can do is replay the comments once again, and try to succinctly remind him of why they're off at best and infuriating at worst:
"This league has a habit, and I am just going to say habit, of producing some pretty incredible story lines. Last year it was Abe Pollin's widow and this year it was a 14-year-old boy and the only thing we have in common is we have both been bar mitzvahed. We were done. I told Kevin [O'Connor of Utah]: 'We're toast.' This is not happening for us and I was right."
The problem here is that Abe Pollin's widow likely didn't and doesn't see herself as a "story line."
She shouldn't have to. She probably thought of her presence at last year's lottery as one final public tribute, put into place by the Wizards and the NBA, to her late husband. A man who had done endless good work for decades for the city of Washington, D.C., and, less importantly, the NBA. She probably thought of it as a nice final gift, as she sold the team that was in her family for years, from Ted Leonsis; whether the team took home the rights to John Wall that night, or Epke Udoh.
And I can guaran-damn-tee you that Dan Gilbert doesn't think of the bravery his family and his son have shown in the face of Nick Gilbert's disease as a "story line." If I were Dan Gilbert, I'd think of my son as something to be proud of, someone who is doing what's right at an age much too early to be forced into thinking about "what's right."
Also, if I were Dan Gilbert, you'd have to keep each of the point guards that Minnesota holds the rights to in between me and Kahn the next time we crossed paths.
Kahn can talk up his joke all he wants. We get it. It's as tired and obvious as they come -- "as soon as I saw the ____, I knew it was over."
Save it for your buddies in the lapping press, off record, at the bar in the hotel a few hours later. Don't inform Nick Gilbert and Irene Pollin that they're mere story lines that the NBA wants winning the big prize, oh wait I'm joking, can't you guys take a joke, I'm astonished.
I could give a rat's tail about the jokes regarding a fixed lottery. That's for David Stern to clean up.
Now it's time for David Kahn to clean up, and apologize to both the Gilbert and Pollin families.