The Athletic Reporter
September 12, 2005 Sports News the Way You Want It. Completely Made Up. Issue 127
Saddam Arrives at Arena From Court Proceedings Just In Time to Lead Baghdad Lakers to Playoff Victory
Originally posted 7/5/2004

Saddam dunks on the Tikrit Heat mere minutes after arriving at the arena from a preliminary hearing for his war crimes trial
BAGHDAD - Deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, who was advised in a Thursday hearing of charges against him ranging from war crimes to mass killings and the murders of religious and political dissidents, arrived at Thursday evening's playoff game in Tikrit against the Tikrit Heat just before tipoff, in time to lead the Baghdad Lakers to a dramatic 101-99 victory in the pivotal Game 5 of the Mideast Conference Finals.

Hussein led all scorers with 35 points -- 18 of which came in the fourth quarter -- and added 23 assists and eight rebounds as the Baghdad took a 3-2 lead in the series by virtue of their Game 5 win.

"Saddam was just unstoppable tonight," said Heat head coach Tariq Van Gundy. "After a long afternoon of asserting his rightful claim as leader of the sovereign Iraq and railing against the illegal occupation of the infidels, we figured he'd be a little tired. But he got stronger as the game went on."

Despite early foul trouble, Hussein kept the Lakers in the game with two timely three-pointers in the first quarter, both of which cut Takrit's lead to six and ended Heat scoring runs. "The referees were undoubtedly under the sway of criminal infidel George Bush," Hussein said, "and will soon have to answer to Allah for calling those ticky-tack fouls. But due to my supreme and divine authority as leader of the Iraqi people, I was able to find my shooting stroke and keep it close until we could make a run."

"He was just all over the place," said Heat rookie Dwayne al-Wade, who guarded Hussein. "I couldn't even stay with him, and, even when I got a hand in his face, it didn't even faze him. It was a hell of a performance for a guy his age who spent the last seven months being held by U.S. forces in a secret, undisclosed location as a prisoner of war."

"Saddam, he's been handling this whole thing incredibly well," said Baghdad coach Ibn al-Jackson. "It's been really stressful on him, and on the team, but, we're here to support him. Remember, at this point, he's only an alleged genocidal tyrant."

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