Fan Gets Too Rowdy
The Laker bus was delayed as it left the team hotel early Wednesday evening when an overzealous fan was wrestled to the ground by Detroit police and security personnel.
According to witnesses, the team had passed from the hotel lobby into the bus, through dozens of fans standing in the cold, when one man in his 30s became unruly. He was subdued by local police along with Josh Mankini, one of two bodyguards who often travel with Kobe Bryant and are on Bryant’s payroll.
Ron Harper, the former Laker and one of Coach Phil Jackson’s favorites, sat behind the Laker bench during Wednesday night’s game.
In a brown sport coat and matching tie, Harper had the look of an assistant coach ... or a man waiting on a 10-day contract.
Jackson shook his head.
“He’s got nothing to do,” Jackson said, grinning. “He’s kind of homeless. We have decided to give him some support.”
Harper said he would accompany the team the rest of the trip, late Wednesday night offering keen insight on a 111-88 loss.
“It was ugly,” he said. “How’s that sound?”
Robert Horry started at power forward. Mark Madsen, who had started four consecutive games and eight overall, lost for the first time as a starter Tuesday in Chicago. Horry scored 13 points in 30 minutes.... Bryant, to the woman in the front row with the sign predicting the end of the Laker run: “Breathe easy.” ... Bryant was kneed in the back of his right knee in the first quarter, but he said it had no impact on his play. He said he experienced no pain in either knee over the past two games.