[From the Fan Posts, daledavis offers a random and well-explored thought that is fitting following a pair of preseason losses to the Bulls. - TL]
Kim Jong Il peaced out at age 70. Still the only man to shoot 38 under par on a regulation 18-hole golf course – including 5 holes in one. And keep in mind it was the first time he ever picked up a club. Safe to say the golf world will never be the same.
Kim was reported to be a huge basketball fan. Rick Santorum, the Republican presidential candidate and former Pennsylvania senator, once said that North Korea posed less of a security threat than Iran because Kim "doesn’t want to die; he wants to watch N.B.A. basketball."
In 2009, The Washington Post detailed the Swiss education of Kim’s son and successor, Kim Jong-un, who was said to have little interest in politics in his earlier years and instead "spent hours doing meticulous pencil drawings" of Michael Jordan.
Madeline Albright also gave him a signed Michael Jordan Basketball. Kim Jong Il was a huge Bulls fan, and a man of his influance and power could easily manipulate games.
Exhibit A : The Pacers had one of the best teams in 1997-98. Yes the Bulls where on a great run going to thier 6th Championship. They took the Bulls to an epic 7 game series that went down in the History books. The winner got a Utah team that was good not great. There has long been NBA conspiracy theorist out there that said that the NBA did not want the Pacers to win because they where small market meaning small money. Today I had a thought, what if Kim Jong Il paid off someone who paid off the ref's for Game 7 of the NBA Conference Finals that year. We know that NBA refs have been in scandals with Tim Donaghy.
In the fourth quarter of that game there are some very questionable calls. One ecspecially late on Dale Davis, then you will see him slam the ball hard. My belief is that Kim Jong Il was such a crazy supporter of Michael Jordan and the Bulls that he would have the motivation to do this. The Pacers where one of the only teams to threaten Jordan's six-peat, and Kim would not stand for the Bulls to lose. He would send someone close enough to his office with money to a family member in the United States. They would then pay someone close to the Ref's to make the deal.
Check out this clip:
Honestly, I am starting to believe this myself because the Pacer where so good that year the Bulls could not touch them. I think the only way they could beat us was to cheat . . . Even though they were not in on it. The Pacers ended that season, so hot. It was very disappointing for all of us at the time. Kim Jong Il stole that moment from us, and really it just gives everyone one more reason to dislike him, on top of all the human rights violations and starvation of his own people. Bulls fans are so lucky they got Kim Jong Il on their side, and in the back of my mind I wonder what history would look like today if Kim was handed a Reggie Miller signed basketball.