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Malik Rose wasn't the most crucial cog in the Spurs' championship machine last season, but he was certainly among the most popular. A media-friendly mix of on-court, overachieving toughness and off-court loquaciousness, Rose defined the Spurs' collective personality. Malik is so likable, he can even induce South Texans to go to a fast-food restaurant dedicated to the cuisine of his native Philadelphia. When Malik's Philly's Phamous opened on Labor Day at the Quarry Market, Rose was still reaping the benefits of this city's title fever. Now, midway through an erratic 2003-04 campaign, Rose finds himself in coach Gregg Popovich's doghouse, his playing time radically reduced, and his name the subject of recent trade rumors. How has this affected business at Philly's Phamous?Apparently, not much. On a recent Monday afternoon, the restaurant drew a healthy lunchtime mix of Quarry shoppers and area businessmen, all eager to take a bite out of the City of Brotherly Love. Philly's Phamous fancies itself as an urban street-corner cheesesteak haven, with a faux-exterior interior consisting of Victorian street lights and a street sign marking the intersection of Market and Broad Streets. ;- Gilbert Garcia

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