1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

The Best March Madness story, part two

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Alma, Mar 25, 2007.


Which is best gamer from Saturday's Kansas-UCLA game?

  1. Kansas City Star

    5 vote(s)
  2. LA Times

    5 vote(s)
  3. Orange County Register

    2 vote(s)
  4. Wichita Eagle

    0 vote(s)
  5. LA Daily News

    0 vote(s)
  1. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member





  2. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    I couldn't get the LA Times story cuz you have to sign up and I don't want to go through the motions. Too bad Frank Burlison couldn't cover the game.

    Anyway, they were all workmanlike, though I'd like to see the Times' effort.
  3. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    Take it away, Bruins
    Afflalo makes the big plays, and UCLA makes a return trip to the Final Four
    By Diane Pucin, Times Staff Writer
    SAN JOSE — Arron Afflalo felt them, five pairs of Kansas eyes staring at him. Six seconds left in the first half, Afflalo had the ball, all the Jayhawks waited, daring the UCLA junior to make a play.
    Afflalo did. He passed to a wide-open Josh Shipp. Shipp made a three-pointer, the buzzer sounded, the Bruins chest-bumped their way off the floor at HP Pavilion, the crowd in full roar and the Jayhawks in retreat.
    UCLA defeated Kansas, 68-55, Saturday in the NCAA West Regional final because when it mattered a Bruin made a play.
    For the first time since 1975 and 1976 during the transition from John Wooden to Gene Bartow, the Bruins (30-5) will play in back-to-back Final Fours. Second-seeded UCLA will play the winner of today's Midwest Regional final between Florida and Oregon next Saturday in Atlanta.
    It was the Gators who beat the Bruins in last year's national championship game. It was the Ducks who handed UCLA its first loss this season.
    The Bruins ended top-seeded Kansas' 14-game winning streak and have now beaten the Jayhawks (33-5) for the fifth time in five NCAA matchups.
    Afflalo, who had a game-high 24 points, four rebounds and three assists, was selected the regional's most valuable player and was humbly relieved. His assist to Shipp before halftime had helped UCLA grab a 35-31 lead. Twice he made three-pointers as the 35-second shot clock ticked to zero.
    "This one means a lot to me," Afflalo said, "because over my three years here I've become more and more a leader."
    Afflalo, who diagrams plays in his head, calculated every angle at the end of the half. "With five guys looking at me," he said, "I knew someone was open."
    Shipp had missed last year's NCAA run as he recovered from hip surgery, but against Kansas he had nine points, six rebounds, five assists, four steals and made defensive noise with his body bumping on everyone.
    Yet according to Kansas Coach Bill Self, it was sophomore point guard Darren Collison who made the biggest shot of the night.
    UCLA had a 55-50 lead with 5:23 left and, again, the shot clock was dwindling. Collison, beyond the top of the key, heard Bruins fans counting, "Five, four, three," so he took a step back from his defender and heard "two, one."
    "So I shot," Collison said. The ball was a rainbow and it hardly touched the net. So perfect, and the 58-50 lead was deflating to the Jayhawks.
    "We had some momentum then," Self said, "and that basket kept us an arm's length away."
    The Jayhawks would never get closer than seven points, and when Luc Richard Mbah a Moute dunked with 25 seconds left all the Bruins started dancing. Afflalo dribbled out the last few seconds and was swallowed into the embrace of his teammates.
    "It feels even better than last year," he said.
    UCLA Coach Ben Howland orchestrated the postgame festivities, cutting down the net and leading the team and the fans into the UCLA eight-clap cheer.
    "This was special," Howland said, "because we played our best against the best team we faced this year."
    At first it seemed as if the Bruins were going to get run over by the Jayhawks. Running dunks by center Sasha Kaun. Alley-oop passes from Mario Chalmers to Darnell Jackson. As Kansas opened a 27-21 lead, it seemed as if the Bruins were getting pummeled.
    "We were on our heels a little," center Alfred Aboya said. "We needed to get acclimated to the pace."
    Yet even as Kansas looked bigger, stronger and faster, there was Shipp coming clean off a screen to make a three-pointer and Collison using a jump stop and a head fake on a drive to score on a layup. Freshman Russell Westbrook converted a turnover into a dunk.
    Afflalo to Shipp to halftime was, Howland said, "a huge boost and it carried over."
    UCLA finished with 25 turnovers to 21 for Kansas. "If someone had told me that would happen," Afflalo said, "I wouldn't think we would win."
    But they did. For the 17th time UCLA will be in the Final Four, an NCAA record for at least a day. North Carolina has advanced as far 16 times and plays Georgetown today for a chance at its own 17th trip.
    "We feel like we didn't finish the job last year," Collison said. "We're going to enjoy this moment."
    Afflalo agreed.
    "We need to feel this," he said, "and do a little better."

  4. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Not bad.

    And thanks for posting the story.
  5. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    The LA Daily News story is damn near unreadable...no offense
    It gets my vote for worst.
    Where's that guy who likes the score in the lede? He'll love the Star's effort, the final score makes its first appearance in the 8th graf.
    Pretty obvious that deadline wasn't an issue for any of them. Lots of words, none qualify as pithy.
    I did like what KC did, good "we were stupid" quote in Wichita and the LAT was solid.
    Let me see what everyone else says and I'll agree with them ponder, but I'd lean toward the LAT's, mostly since it says who UCLA plays next and I don't remember seeing that in other winner gamers.
  6. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member

    The Times' story is, in my view, pretty damn good. Clean lines in the opening. Nice details - the celebrations, mentioning Shipp's injury from last year and his nice overall line yesterday. Maybe could have touched on Afflalo's equally improbable second-half 3 in relation to Collison's.
  7. Bullwinkle

    Bullwinkle Member

    Thought the KC Star's was the best. Many of the stories had the score buried, but I thought Jason King did the nicest job of keeping the lead tight and to the point. Sort of got bored with the others, particularly the LA Daily News gamer.

    1. KC Star, 2. LA Times, 3. OC Register, 4. Wichita Eagle, 5. LA Daily News.
  8. Why didn't you include the gamer from KU's hometown paper?
  9. I don't think I'd call a newspaper that annually pulls in APSE awards for both its section and its writing a "rag", but that's just me.
  10. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    I think this is the gamer.

    Pretty good, better than at least a couple of the others posted.
  11. Oz

    Oz Well-Known Member

    What SportsHack said. I read the KC Star first, then Lawrence. I rarely turn to the Wichita Eagle for KU news.
  12. spinning27

    spinning27 New Member

    Kuwada's story for the OC Register was the best of a mediocre group.
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page