FOR THE WEEK OF FEBRUARY 10-16
"He's a blue-collar guy from Schenectady, New York, and you guys [the media] bought that he was glamorous. He's more blue-collar than any guy you want to meet."—Pistons coach Doug Collins, on the misleading Showtime image of Miami coach Pat Riley.
Since activating 32-year-old guard Nate McMillan from the injured list on Feb. 11 after a 23-game absence for a torn stomach muscle, the Sonics have beaten the Nuggets, the Rockets and the Lakers. Coach George Karl considers McMillan's defense and leadership indispensable if Seattle is to repeat as Western Conference champ.
With an 83-75 loss to the Cavaliers on Feb. 12, the Pacers failed for the eighth time this season to rise above .500.
Will the NBA face a referee crisis? On Feb. 12 refs Henry Armstrong and George Toliver were indicted by separate federal grand juries on tax-evasion charges. Allegedly, they exchanged first-class airline tickets for cheaper coach tickets and failed to pay taxes on the difference. The league has placed the two officials on paid leave, and more refs may be indicted.