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Casual Friday

June 14, 2008 | 10:42 am

Lakers_lose_to_boston There once was a great bit on "Friends" in which we learn that Phoebe, because her parents never let her see the end of "Old Yeller," thought it was a fun, happy movie about a nice yellow dog, not realizing they have to shoot him in the end.  That's basically what Phil Jackson did on Friday, canceling practice and keeping an abbreviated film session focused on the very successful first half of action.  Unfortunately, the Lakers know that, like Old Yeller, they were put down in the end, and Phil Jackson knows that's a tough thing for them to shake.  It's tough enough to come back from a 3-1 deficit. To do it after what was quite literally a historic collapse makes it that much harder.

(The Celtics, by the way, also chose not to practice, in large part to let their injured players get a chance to heal.)

It does, however, give everyone a little more time to try and figure out what the hell happened.  Fans have their idea, and BIll Plaschke believes it's important not to forget Phil Jackson's role in the whole affair.  Pau Gasol didn't distinguish himself down the stretch, either.   Moving beyond requires a psychological salvage operation.

There were ghosts from the past rearing their heads on Thursday night.  But was it the worst disaster in LA sports history?

Scoop Jackson thinks it might be time for L.A. to craft a concession speech.  He won't get much argument from Jim Alexander of the Press-Enterprise, who predicts a Boston win Sunday evening.  Closing out the Lakers on Father's Day would have special meaning for Rivers.

The comeback had a lot of writers hurriedly changing their stories.

Maybe this Donaghy thing provides just the distraction the Lakers need?  (Talking about crooked officiating means no talking about Thursday?  It's a theory.)  It's certainly sucking up much of the oxygen around the Finals.

More on Kobe's post-Game 4 reaction. Doc thinks the flak Bryant takes is unfair.