by Lang Whitaker

Actual conversation today on the elevator at my hotel…

WOMAN: Hey dude.

ME: Me?

WOMAN: (possibly buzzed) Yeah…you. Which player on the Lakers broke his rib in the game today?

ME: Today? The Lakers didn’t have a game today.

WOMAN: Oh. (looks disappointed, then smiles) Well, it’s over between us anyway. (laughs)

ME: Did one of the Lakers tell you he broke his rib today in a game?

WOMAN: Yeah, or in practice maybe.

ME: Was it a white guy or a black guy?

WOMAN: White guy.

ME: (thinking it could be Luke Walton) Did he have curly hair?

WOMAN: No.

ME: (thinking it could be Coby Karl) Was it kind of stringy hair?

WOMAN: No, it was short hair. Do you want to see his picture?

ME: Sure.

WOMAN: (elevator reaches her floor) Hold the door. (I hold the door as she fumbles with a digital camera) Here he is. (She shows me a picture of her and Chris Mihm in a local restaurant)

ME: Oh, that’s Chris Mihm.

WOMAN: OK. Well, he broke his rib today.

At the time I write this, there’s nothing about Chris Mihm breaking a rib on the internet. I don’t know if this woman had breaking news, or if Chris Mihm just had a creative way to avoid having to hang around this woman any longer. Perhaps this woman is actually Hawaii resident Chad Ford, who I was disappointed not to see at the game last night, and she’s taking us inside the NBA. I have no idea.

(Actually, I do have an idea, after I ran into a Lakers insider at dinner tonight who told me that Mihm practiced today and didn’t appear to be injured. I guess it’s the secret of Mihm.)

Today was my third day in Hawaii, and I’m still on NYC time. I spent the day working on some SLAM ish, and by dinnertime tonight I was wiped. So I hit Ole Faithful (Starbucks) for a caffeine injection and managed to stay up through the night. One bonus: Got to spend a late night out with my main man Atiba and a few of his Hawaiian homies. We were out late enough that a phone call to Da Kine Bail Bonds was almost made. We got off with a warning, though. What!

Not much else to write about today. Spent the day working on a story for an upcoming issue of SLAM that I can’t talk about, but let me just say that Sasha Vujacic was great at the photo shoot and said some really groundbreaking things.

Some links…

• The Lakers still might trade Kobe. He’s been quiet about this recently, hasn’t he?

• Pat Riley came out swinging today, with all kinds of amazing quotes about Antoine Walker. Riles is angry because Toine showed up at 262 pounds. “I’m always saying, ‘I wonder what he would be like at 235 and seven percent?'” Riley said. “I dream of those numbers.”

• Check out Rasheed, looking out for CWebb.

• If you want KG on the cover of your magazine, you better be ready for Paul Pierce and Ray Allen to show up with him. Unless…