MORE THAN HALFWAY THROUGH THE SEASON, THE CAN'T-LOSE LAKERS ARE A TOTAL MESS, FOUR GAMES BELOW .500. IN THIS TOWN OF EPIC DISASTER FLICKS, WHAT ARE THE CHANCES THAT COACH MIKE D'ANTONI PLAYS SCRIPT DOCTOR AND TURNS THIS FIASCO INTO A COMEBACK STORY?
O.K., Bryce Harper, as a rookie you put up the best season by a teenager in history. Guess what? It's time for you—and the rest of last year's smashing rookie class—to do it again. Now about that sophomore jinx ...
What can Rajon Rondo do next? Lead the league in triple doubles (again). Average more assists than anyone (again). And maybe prove that his team is not better off without him. Oh yeah—and do it all after rehabbing a torn ACL
The buildup for the April draft begins in earnest with this week's scouting combine in Indianapolis, the league's annual job fair for 300-plus aspirants. Here are four reasons to pay attention to what unfolds at Lucas Oil Stadium
1933--2013 Jerry Buss Yes, the longtime Lakers owner (page 20), who died on Monday, won 10 NBA titles in his 33 years in charge of the franchise. But he also embroidered the team into the cultural fabric of L.A., in no small part because the nightlife-loving chemist (third from right)—seen here with Magic Johnson and some unidentified friends in 1981—saw Showtime as more than a basketball branding tool. It was a way of life.
PHOTOPhotograph by Mike Carter/USA Today Sports
Arch Enemies Fans can talk all the trash they want, but the Michigan--Michigan State rivalry comes down to skirmishes like this one between the Wolverines' Trey Burke (3) and the Spartans' Denzel Valentine before an inbounds pass in East Lansing on Feb. 12. Until their March 3 rematch, advantage Michigan State: The No. 8 Spartans routed No. 4 Michigan 75--52.
PHOTOPhotograph by KAI PFAFFENBACH/Reuters
They'll At Least Put in a Starting Gate, Right? A brave skier made his way through some extreme powder at Rosa Khutor, the Russian resort that will host the Alpine skiing events during the Sochi Olympics next year. This guy looks chilly, but a worry for the Games: Warm weather farther down the mountain forced the cancellation of a World Cup snowboard event last week.