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The Lakers Enlist Some Unexpected Help to Retain Dwight Howard

They've got friends in red and gold places.

[INT. Staples Center - Los Angeles, CA, inside the office of Mitch Kupchak, general manager of the Los Angeles Lakers]

Jim_buss_icon_medium Mitch, dammit, what the hell is going on? You told me it was a sure thing that Dwight Howard would re-sign with us.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium I know, Mr. Buss.

Jim_buss_icon_medium And now I keep seeing articles like this! What the hell happened, Mitch?

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Well... Dwight has proven to be a little bit harder to negotiate with than we expected, sir.

Jim_buss_icon_medium /snort

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium To be fair, sir, it was hard to know that we would need to promise him his own TV show --

Jim_buss_icon_medium Which is fine, whatever.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium -- and a personal petting zoo in Staples Center --

Jim_buss_icon_medium We'll just take out part of the Clippers locker room.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium -- anti-gravity boots --

Jim_buss_icon_medium Do those even exist?

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium -- and the undying love and affection of Los Angelenos.

Jim_buss_icon_medium So we have to create, build, and secretly use a mind-control ray now?

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium I'm just reading his list of demands, sir.

Jim_buss_icon_medium /sighs

Jim_buss_icon_medium Dammit, Mitch, do you know how bad we might be next year without Dwight?

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium It could be, uh, pretty rough.

Jim_buss_icon_medium Damn right it could. And we can't afford that, dammit.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Like I said, sir, we're working day and night on these negotiations. We have our best people on it. We're even bringing in some out-of-town experts to share their secrets.

Iconphone45_medium BZZT

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium In fact, that's one of them right now.

Jim_buss_icon_medium Good. Bring him in, bring him in. Lord knows we need all the good ideas we can get right now.

Icondoor_medium /door opens

Iconpollard_medium Hola, amigos! Me llamo Jamie!

Jim_buss_icon_medium uh...

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Mr. Pollard, I'm Mitch Kupchak. We spoke over the phone. This is Jim Buss, the owner of the Lakers.

Iconpollard_medium /shakes hands vigorously

Iconpollard_medium Hot diggity!

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium As I said over the phone, Mr. Pollard, we're in the middle of some very delicate and critically important negotiations. Our client, Dwight Howard, can be very fickle and we're having a difficult time striking the right notes in his negotiations. We thought maybe we need some fresh ideas about how to market ourselves and some colleagues of mine said that you were a bold thinker.

Iconpollard_medium You got that right, Mr. Kupchak. Ol' Jamie only knows one speed and that's jumbo-sized!

Jim_buss_icon_medium /puzzled

Iconpollard_medium But I think I know just what you fellas need. I'm gonna let you boys know the secret of my marketing empire...

Jim_buss_icon_medium Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Iconpollard_medium /leans in

Iconpollard_medium ...BILLBOARDS!

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium ...

Jim_buss_icon_medium what

Iconpollard_medium Yessir, billboards. Billboards never fail to get the job done, no sir. A good billboard can transform anyone's mind! Just look at this dandy effort from a few years ago!


Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium ...I see.

Iconpollard_medium Now, I came up with something on the flight over here, so you just tell me how you like it. I think you're gonna be pretty impressed...

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium OK.


Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium um

Iconpollard_medium See? Real simple and right to the point.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Yes, that's true...

Iconpollard_medium And actually I've got a whole series based on that idea!



Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Good god, not that one. We don't want to encourage him to speak more -- all he does is get in trouble when he opens his mouth.

Iconpollard_medium Don't worry, I've got plenty more ideas!





Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium um, you realize Dwight is a basketball player and not a dog, right?

Iconpollard_medium I don't know, fellas. I've seen Air Bud and I don't see why the two things have to be mutually exclusive. Seems a little speciesist, if you ask me.

Jim_buss_icon_mediumMitch_kupchak_icon_medium ...

Iconpollard_medium You know, I've been fighting this battle with the NCAA, too. My basketball coach, Fred, wants to accept a transfer pony from the Faraway Farm in Kentucky, but Mark Emmert and his fuddy-duddy underlings in Indianapolis keep saying "no."

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Yes, but Dwight Howard is a person. Not a horse.

Jim_buss_icon_medium Or a dog.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Or a dog, yes.

Iconpollard_medium Oh, sure. I have a few more ideas.


Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium No, I don't think that will work. Dwight hates flopping.

Jim_buss_icon_medium Wait, does that hastag say #DIED12?

Iconpollard_medium Yep!

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium You don't think that might be the wrong message to send to Dwight?

Iconpollard_medium /thinks

Iconpollard_medium Ohhhh! Well, sure, if you think about it like that.

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium As oppose to all the other ways you can interpret telling someone to "die"?

Iconpollard_medium /shrugs


Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium Come on, 60%? Our pitch should at least be based in reality.

Iconpollard_medium Ol' Jamie's just an idea man, fellas! I've got no filter! I believe in using the very first thing that pops into my head!

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium I would never have guessed.

Jim_buss_icon_medium /sigh

Jim_buss_icon_medium Oh hell, let's just use the first one. It can't make things any worse.

Iconpollard_medium Jamie Pollard, marketing whiz strikes again!

Mitch_kupchak_icon_medium We are so doomed.

(H/T to Horace for his assistance with these pics. Thanks, Mr. Cow!)