Parting is such sweet sorrow, even in cow towns.
Unfortunately, Jackson won't get to say goodbye to the fans he called semi-civilized redneck barbarians, prompting them to go home and get their cowbells.
Jackson has since called a move to Anaheim "ridiculous" and said he'll miss the rowdy atmosphere, so even if owners Joe and Gavin Maloof offered him their coaching job in 2005, they're skipping a farewell ceremony.
Of course, it could be the last day of an NBA regular season for a long time, or ever.
With our Sunday page ending for the playoffs, just in case this is the last one of these I'll write …
You say hello, I say goodbye
"Royals" was their name in Rochester and Cincinnati before rolling on to Kansas City and Sacramento … and would be again in Anaheim.
Both Los Angeles teams are watching silently but in horror.
Time Warner's new $3-billion Lakers TV deal reportedly has a third-team clause, reducing it by $250 million.
So much for the notion there's a dollar figure that could satisfy Jerry Buss.
Royals set opener for … whenever
Meanwhile, with NBA owners seeking 40% of players' salaries, there's plenty to discuss before the mid-October drop-dead date to start on time … or the early-January drop-dead date to start at all.
Along the way, however, things will change.
If the decertified NFL players' anti-trust case goes forward successfully, NBA players will follow suit, literally.
Otherwise, NFL and NBA owners regain that leverage.
Then there's a Sacramento move …
In any labor deal, the big owners — starting with Buss — will be asked to fund dramatically increased revenue sharing.
Does someone think Buss will watch $250 million fly away because someone set up a lemonade stand in Orange County, then say, "I'd be glad to kick in an extra $5 million to $10 million annually?"
Look, up in the skies!
Yes, Caped Commissioner could swoop down, bolster the Maloofs for a year and get this deferred, too.
Oops: The Boston Celtics, now dependent on 39-year-old Shaquille O'Neal, saw his long-awaited return last five minutes before hurting himself again. … Meanwhile opponents play off Rajon Rondo, making him shoot over them, as Chicago's Derrick Rose did, outscoring him, 30 points to seven. … By the way, if Rose is bigger, better and can shoot, that's the way opponents will start playing him, too.
Why I hate the MVP: On Rose's behalf, people now sneer at Orlando's 50 wins, or, on Dwight Howard's behalf, claim Rose is incidental to the Bulls' success. … Actually, they're both great. Rose will win in a romp.
Uh, don't MVPs lead? After months insisting he doesn't want to leave, Howard told the Orlando Sentinel's Brian Schmitz he wouldn't get all his technicals "playing for another team." … How about a poll asking Magic fans if he meant the New York Knicks or Lakers?