Remember when Phil Jackson called Sacramento a cow town and referred to Kings fans as semi-civilized? Back then the rivalry between the Lakers and the Kings was perhaps the best in the NBA. It hit its peak when the Lakers beat the Kings in an epic seven-game battle for the Western Conference championship in 2002.
So, it was a little surprising to hear Jackson heap praise on the Kings, the Lakers’ opponent Tuesday night in Sacramento.
“I think they play harder then we do,” he said after Monday’s practice. “We’ve won a majority of the games lately, but I’m always amazed at how hard they play. That’s an indication of how they’re after this rivalry and try to make a good game of it. I’m impressed with their energy on the court. We have to meet their energy.”