arlotte was like that 10 or 15 years ago. Their attendance was extraordinary at that time and had a wonderful attachment to their team.”
Have you ever been in a noisier arena?
Jackson: "Walking back to the hotel at 2 in the morning, my ears still ringing, I’m thinking maybe not. I can tell you, it’s been loud in a lot of places. Phoenix was loud in the ’93 series (NBA Finals). Utah was extremely loud in the ’97, ’98 playoffs. I actually had to use ear plugs the first five minutes, it was so loud.”
What effect does the noise have?
Jackson: "It deadens players’ activity levels. That’s something you have to get used to. On timeouts, you’ll see me wait until the final 30 seconds, when it’s usually a little quieter, and step in for 15-20 seconds, get my message across.”
You said you planned to make it to the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Did you make it?
Jackson: "No. We might get back here again.”
Have you visited the bombing memorial?
Jackson: "No. Jeanie (Buss, his girlfriend) has been to it. I’ve driven by it many times. Someday I’ll visit it. I’d like to not get in that mood right at this time. I understand it, and I appreciate it. But I don’t want to get down about it.”
BY MIKE BALDWIN AND BERRY TRAMEL