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The Big ?

You guys have discussed the topic all season. With the season over and draft fever running wilder than Charlie Sheen at the Bunny Ranch, the talk's gotten even more fierce. And now Hoopsworld's Eric Pincus breaks down the question on every purple and gold brain. To adopt parlance common with the other K brothers blog...

Should the Lakers swing for the fences now or patiently hit doubles and triples while attempting to build a roster capable of potential grand slams down the road?

How's that for shameless cross promotion while simultaneously creating fodder for more enthusiastic debate? We're clever like that around here.

Let's hear some thoughts. Batter up! (OK, that one was actually kinda lame.)

AK

 
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its official...im hella confused about whats going to happen in the future

Go Lakers

Eric Pincus has been reading the blog, LOL! Everything he said is what is discussed here. We should use the ESPN type of thing and put an INSIDER status to some of the posts. LOL!

mike

Can we sue for idea stealing? I feel violated. All I can say is if the Kwam (the name) gets out there...I'm def going to sue (it's Blog Trademarked).

LOL

I was completely joking for those that didn't get it. lol. But really it's amazing to think how dedicated/knowledgeable and loyal we are. Go Blog (and Bloggers)!

"certainly many of his acrimonious comments directed at Los Angeles and the Lakers are deserved"---um, so we are fake? And he really won't eat rat poison cause we don't like him anymore?
"Assistant Coach Kurt Rambis laughed at speculation that Odom was available, suggesting the rumors weren't coming from the Laker side of things. "---YES! There ain't no way I'm trading Odom for just a #2 or worst #16!

Honestly, I think it all had to do really with what we were projected to be and how good we turned out to be (or at least can turn out to be). Especially in today's NBA, ceilings are always talked about, and obviously with such a showing this season, our ceiling has just been raised farther than it was. I think the management itself believed that we had no shot of advancement as a team this season, so the offseason "moves" of 04 were not really "big" but this season is another story.

Go Lakers!

I feel cheated on. To hear the K bro's talk dirty the way they talk on here, about a sport as stupid as baseball is really sad. I feel raped and a part of promotion act meant to capture the brains of us stupid bloggers. Are the K brothers even real Lakers fans or are they just in it for the money. Also, the Yankees are worth more than the dodgers, why don't you start a blog for them?

cha boy,
Mike L.

Mike L.,

Trust me. The amount of money it would take for me to do a Yankees blog would likely prohibit it from happening. I hate that team and everything it stands for. And the last thing this planet needs is yet another outlet for people to discuss that evil franchise ad neausem. I doubt I could do that blog for more than two weeks without developing ulcers. Unless the salary The NYT is offering leaves me waist deep in cash and Zantac, I don't see that one working out.

AK

He was joking, or at least I think so (if not I stand corrected). In any case it's not so bad, the Dodgers Blog is actually pretty cool (interesting topics certainly) but then again, the Dodgers are struggling so maybe it's the K Bros "curse" I still can't forget that game we lost cause the blog was conveniently "offline."

LOL

The blog's got this figured better than Pincus. We wait for Lebron only. If he extends, we move now. He's worth waiting for, no one else is.

It was only one rebound away but next year Amare and Thomas could sweep that one off the boards again. The way the West looks, we'll need to climb to stay level.

Pincus talked about sitting out like San Antonio before they got Duncan. Noah is no Duncan. We should chase this thing now. With the league the way it is I think we could win it all with a couple of pieces. Let's go get 'em if Lebron decides to spend his entire career in Cleveland for whatever reason. If not, I think the Lakers are the only possible choice for a chosen one.

Lebron is the only player worth waiting for.

PERIOD!

If, or when, he resigns..Lakers MUST make a move right away. Lakers need to PRY KG from Minny (shouldn't be that hard). TRADE ODOM + EVERYONE ELSE EXCEPT BYNUM and Kobe to get him. He's worth it.

WAIT FOR LEBRON???? WHY? SO THE LAKERS COULD HAVE ONLY TWO ALL STARS AND THE REST REJECTS? HOW FAIR IS THAT? WHY WOULD LEBRON PLAY SIDEKICK TO KOBE ANYWAYS? LEBRON IS YOUNGER THAN KOBE, SO I WOULD THINK HE WOULD WANT HIS OWN LEGEND, NOT "THE LAKERS! STARRING KOBE BRYANT WITH LEBRON JAMES!" AS GREAT AS THAT WOULD BE, I THINK THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH THAT. MAYBE I AM THE ONLY ONE, BUT I WOULDNT WANT THOSE TWO ACTING UP BECAUSE THE OTHER WANTS TO SPOTLIGHT THIER OWN TALENT. I SAY WE DO IT LIKE THE THE OLD SKOOL LAKERS AND THIS GEN. SPURS. SAME STRONG STARTING CAST THAT HAVE PLAYED WITH EACH OTHER FOR A LONG TIME AND KNOWS EACH OTHER THROUGHLY. I THINK WE CAN OBTAIN THESE PIECES ONLY IF THEY DONT MAKE STUPID TRANSACTIONS LIKE WAITING FOR LEBRON. KG I COULD GO FOR, LEBRON.....HELL NO. THAT SAID LEBRON IS FREAKIN AWESOME BUT, NO. IF THE LAKERS COULD PULL OF KOBE, LAMAR, AND KG, THE REST IS JUST DETAILS. (BY THE WAY I ONLY MENTIONED KG BECAUSE HE PROBABLY IS EASIER TO OBTAIN AND QUICKLY. I ALSO COULD MENTION J-ONEILL TOO. ADD IN YOUR FAV.)

HEADLINE - "doubles and triples" build depth.

i think every laker fan who watched the playoffs can admit that a lack of roster depth may have been a large determining factor to our round one exit.

phoenix loses amare stoudmire and kurt thomas. they insert tim thomas, who turns out to be a cold blooded laker killer seven games straight.

we lose chris mihm. we go to.... kwame brown and ronny turiaf???

now, i am not nearly as harsh on kwam-bam-thank-you-ma'am as other people might be. if coach phil can win a ring with will perdue, bill wennington, luc longley, and a decrepit bill cartwright, then i'll take him for his word at that mr. brown can get the job done.

and as for ronny, well, i think we all know he's got a great big heart...

truthfully, i think they've got solid potential, but the fact of the matter is that these guys are YOUNG and not nearly to the point of maturation necessary for big game situations. same goes for smush, by the way.

tim thomas, up until he started jabbing threes into my eyelids, has been a bust who never lived up to his own hype. for all intensive purposes a should've-been home run, turned into a well timed double or triple. he just happened to be at a turning point in his career where he was seasoned enough to take on a job of less than an all-star and absolutely flourish in it. he's also 29 years old. maturity helps.

so, now that we know the lakers can crash the playoff party with the artist formerly known as # 8, Lamar, and the Kobettes; are there any off-season moves that can help us dig deeper into the post season???

YES. and it doesn't require us swinging for the fences.

my favorite propostion also revolves around the most popular rumor in the chicago bulls.

i've heard the names lamar odom, andrew bynum, chirs mihm, ben gordon, brandon roy, tyson chandler, and almost every other player on either roster not named kobe being kicked around. but before we start swapping jerseys too, why don't we cut down the possibilities to cover both of our team needs.

chicago needs a big man. tyson chandler can't stay healthy. when he's not around, the bulls start 6-7 andres nocioni, 6-8 luol deng, and 6-7 michael sweetney along the front line... my high school team was taller than that! chirs mihm is a young, legit 7 footer who can play with his back to the basket and average 10 points and 6 rebounds a game in the NBA. last time i checked, 7 footers who can do that are a rare commodity. worth a #2 pick??? maybe the pick and change???

let's suppose brandon roy, the player phil jackson has earmarked for the other guard in the triangle, is who we take. GM rule #1 is always trade height for height (because you can't teach height). so in actuality, a starting gaurd for a starting center might be giving a bit much to chicago. we can thank a woefully slim draft for that. how about swapping our #26 pick for their #16 pick to even things out a bit?

that leaves chris mihm and the #26 for chicago's #2 and #16.

personally, i have someone earmarked for the #16 pick, namely thabo sefolosha; a young, lanky, athletic 6-7 wing player from the italian league. you've never heard of him, but the boy can play. he also should be available at that point in the draft. by all reports he's one heck of an on-ball defender, has a great first step to the basket,has experience at both the point and the wing, and best of all: years of experience of playing for a paycheck! and that translates into maturity.

so,

the bulls still have a first round pick and in what is famously reported as a weak draft where EVERY pick is a crapshoot, and pick up a legitimate starting NBA center in the process.

the lakers get brandon roy and thabo sefolosha; two NBA ready players who can both play the point, shooting guard, and small forward, (i.e.- the type of interchangable players phil dreams about) and fit the traingle system to provide some real depth where it is needed.

no lamar odom, no ben gordon, no andrew bynum, no tyson chandler. no stars, no future stars, no potential stars in the making. just ball players. two rosters get balanced. both teams get deeper.

think about it. it works for everybody.

Can anyone say "plagiarism"!!! Seriously can us bloggers get some royalties or atleast some credit (other than Ronnie Lester interview by K bros). lol

There are 3 players that SHOULD NOT BE TRADED
1. Kobe
2. Bynum
3. Odom
I also said it before NO MORE ROOKIES. At this rate we will turn into the Celtics and go on a decade trying to rebuild back to the glory days. We have our star we just need a cast. You cant keep trading your core team because you never develop chemistry. Get some vets. We have good players in Mihm,Smush,Sasha, Walton and Turiaf. They arent great but would be great role players. We just need 2 good vets (not grandpa's) that can start at the point guard. My roster would look something like this.
1. FA (Get Terry or Banks)
2. Kobe
3. Odom
4. Kwame
5. Mihm

1. Smush/Sasha
2. _____/ another FA
3. Walton
4. Turiaf
5. Bynum
It takes too long to learn the triangle and develop these players. Phil doesnt really trust newcomers. Even Jim Jackson didnt get much PT even though he had already played in the triangle. He is suppose to be a vet thats better than the young Smush/Sasha combo yet he didnt get to play. Even if we have enough cap space to sign a Lebron that doesnt mean he will come to L.A. and that means another 2 years wasted and more guys we have to pass (not signing-like Terry) trying to save cap for a guy whose not even gonna wear the purple and gold. I wish we could start talking to him so we dont have to waste so much time. Atleast to know if he's gonna resign and then move on. The moves we make during the next couple of months will define the future of the Lakers for the next 5 years. Wether its saving cap space for Lebron (mediocre season) or signing some good talent (vets) and start a run at another time of glory. The pressure is on for the Lakers front office. Lets hope they dont dissapoint.

IM STARTING TO THINK THAT THE LAKERS ARE GOING TO LET CHICAGO PICK ROY FOR THEM AND GIVE HIM UP WIH MIHM AND MAYBE EVEN THE SIXTEEN....I HAVENT HEARED THAT ONE YET. IM NOT TO SURE ABOUT THE DRAFTS WORKINGS BUT MAYBE THAT COULD HAPPEN. ITS LIKE THE LAKERS ARE STILL GETTING 2 AND 16.

The Laker Organization stinks.

they have fallen off the map to get back to there winning ways.

Hey all - haven't actually read much of the blog - just started paying attention when I noticed my name bandied about here and there.

Also come to see some of the nice interviews the K brothers rock like Lester, Shaw, exit interviews, etc.

Didn't get any of my ideas here - but I'm sure a lot of this has been discussed all over the net.

The point of the trade exception is that it removes the need to whittle down the Laker core to 2-3 players. LA could acquire a max player (off a rookie contract) like they had cap room in 07 without having to cut Kwame, Turiaf, Smush, Walton, Sasha, the 2006 picks, etc - whoever else pans out.

If they want cap room in 2008 - most everyone has to go to make space - but to have a trade exception in 2007 could be a loophole around it.

I wasn't serious about the Lakers tanking the season - but I was comparing and contrasting the extremes of winning now vs. winning later.

Ultimately the team will probably try to navigate a tricky middle ground which hurts today and may limit tomorrow - but hopefully for the fans - they find their way.

AK/BK,

How do you see Rashad McCants' microfracture sugery affecting the Marcus Banks situation? Will added desparation on the part of the T'Wolves drive Banks' price up too high for the Lakers? Should they readjust their sights to Speedy Claxton?

I don't like the idea of gutting the team so LeBron and Kobe can play together. This isn't Bird and Magic. Both need the ball in their hands to play their game. Just putting together a bunch of superstars doesn't make a cohesive unit (see '68 and '04 Lakers). If we decided to make a big move I'd only do it for a big man (KG, Duncan, Dirk). If the Buss clan decides to go after LeBron and he is available, I'd trade Kobe for a bunch of players that would fit around LeBron. That said, I think the best course of action is to forget about LBJ, develop the players we have, adding some pieces as we go and make a run at the title in '08. We are really not that far off (current young players maturing in the system, a better starting PG and one decent forward to put next to LO). We're headed in the right direction. Don't blow it up because of a lack of patience.

Doubles and triples, baby! Doubles and triples.

GO LAKERS!

This is a rehass of what we have been discussing for almost two weeks now. K-Bros, I hope you're not using Eric Pincus' article to stir another round of discussion. I think that's very unprofessional in trying to chase ratings or fishing comments from bloggers on a trite topic.

So far we have already established that most bloggers would like to retain Odom & Bynum. If you need to trade Kwam' or Mihm et al, do it for the betterment of the Lakers not just unloading them by getting a small guard or an untried college draft. If Mihm is exchanged with a low draft pick that'll be an improvement but not #16 or a Duhon or a Miles alone. We don't want to revisit that argument again and again and again!

Not that I'm trying to interfere with your subject matters on your blog but trying to promote Eric Pincus article in a simultaneous fashion would be copying what other blogs are doing that is discussing the hoopsworld's agenda or what other sportswriters are saying. Of course, that's only my perspective of preferring to be original rather than a mere copycat.

Kobe, Odom, Bynum aren't going anywhere.

Hate to break it to you but Kwame Brown isn't either. If the Lakers trade Kwame...there goes the defense and any chance of making the playoffs or Championships.

That's why the core is:

Kobe
Odom
Brown
Bynum

mike

TRADE KOBE for LeBRON

LeBron has PROVEN he can take a team to the second round without Kobe Bryant. However Kobe can't take a team into the second round without a LeBron type.

Trade Kobe for LeBron and startover without the 'pompus and arrogant' DramaKing. If Kobe gets injured, the Lakers would get LESS value for Kobe so 'smart-money' would say TRADE Kobe.

LeBron James would make Odom and the rest of the Lakers play better. Kobe distracts from his teammates. He takes so many ill-advised shots, he takes his teammates out of their rhythm and out of their game.

OUT!!!
the Truth

Jack R, Nice post.

We've bounced the Chicago move around for a while (see Laker Tom posts among others). Thabo sounds great, especially on D. Don't think the Lakes have worked him out. Guess they don't read the blog afterall.

Mihm has value, but not #2 value even in a weak draft. Look what we got him for. If Chi goes for that, they might open Sports Center with it, "and Dallas beats Miami in 7, but first up, does Chicago know something the Lakers don't?"

It's been said that baby By is the only #2 bait we've got. I don't think Roy's worth the kid, so naturally he'll become a stud in his first year and Andrew will grow up to be Olawakandi.

You're right, we don't need stars. Phil and Kobe have been saying "a couple pieces" all year. If KG wanted LA, he'd do it. If Lebron sends a signal while say, playing on the US team with Kobe, then you have to return the message. We should know by mid summer if cap space will buy us anything in 08. If not, we should do what LA does best: spend now.

If Lebron pulls a Kobe and waits all year to "test the waters" it's going to be an NBA media sunami.

I think the Lakers were surprised with the amount of success they had this year and maybe it changed the outlook on how they do business in the next couple years. I believe all the talk about the "2007 or 2008 Plan" can be thrown out now, with Chris Bosh and Lebron James having all but signed max extensions with their clubs. Obviously Amare and Yao are already penned, so it makes no sense to screw around with cap space in a futile attempt to land one of these guys.

However, I do believe the Lakers can make moves strengthening their present while not jeopordizing their future. They will have to take some risks on some players with trouble pasts and big contracts (Miles), but with what they have to offer in players and salary the really desirable players can't be had.

I for one would do the speculated Odom for #2 and #16 IF, AND ONLY IF they had a trade for a big player lined up with that $12 million trade exception. Other than that I feel Lamar Odom is a unique talent in the league and would be incredible if you threw in a scorer next to Kobe so LO could thrive in the role he feels more comfortable.

As for Bynum, I don't think you could get equal value in a trade because he has a small salary (relative) and a player making about the same is not going to bring you near what he offers in return. Now, if he was used in addition to another player to add an All-Star right now (like the rumored D. George + Bynum for Artest deal) I would do it.

Anyway, last season showed that the Lakers are much closer to being a contender than they ever thought and I hope management realizes that and acts accordingly.

Jman,

I'm guessing McCants' injury won't really affect what the Wolves do with Banks. To my knowledge, McCants is strictly a 2 and can't run the point. Banks is probably too small to play shooting guard. So the situations are probably independent of each other. And I really can't picture Minny overpaying an unproven guy who seems like he wants out.

AK


I think there's a common misconception that the Lakers don't need "stars" on this team. I think by "stars" those making the comments mean players with a lot of talent. I do believe the Lakers need a "one or two pieces" as Phil and Kobe have said, but those pieces need to be the caliber of say a Josh Howard or Al Harrington, not a Marcus Banks or Reggie Evans. We don't have the talent level across the board to have players like that make enough of an impact to take us to the next level. After the starting five on this team the talent level drops tremendously.

By the way, I don't have ESPN (cable), so I'm wondering if the blog is going to do a semi-live blog-o-cast on the draft? I mean posting every pick until the Lakers are done. How about it AK/BK?

mike

Folks:

I think we're pretty close. If Mihm/#26 brings us Roy, then we jump on it. I think Mihm/resigned D. George can also bring us Boozer (24 years old, double double player, toughness) that could bring us close w/ M. Banks. That woul be a heck of a promissing team next year:

Banks/Smush
Kobe/Sasha/Profit
LO/Luke/JJ
Boozer/Turiaf
Brown/Socks

If K. Brown continues to get better, he's going to be a 32-35 minute player. That slowly eases Socks in, and you've got Turiaf in a pinch. Plus my proposed squad is very interchangeable as a players can play multiple positions. Only hang-up is Boozer and his injury history. K Bros, if we bring in Boozer, does that mess up our '07/'08 cap?

Mike T,

We'd been planning on doing that. We'll formally announce something later on, but unless something unforseen comes up, that's the ticket. Somebody's gotta comment on the suits a few of the kids are wearing, right?

AK

AK,

You guys have your work cut out if you plan to compete with Bill Simmons' annual NBA Draft running diary. Of course, I have faith you can pull it off. God speed.

Fish Guy,

Boozer blows the 2007/2008 cap out of the water. I think with Kobe, Lamar, and Kwame alone under contract we're almost at the cap and we still need 9 other guys on the roster. The "2007 or 2008 Plan" is a load of poop.

Mike T

After a year of Triangle 101, you're right, the core should, and probably will remain. We could come out with the same squad and be fine. Still, "fine" isn't a word that best describes Lakerland.

If doubles and triples means get us a guard that can shore up Smushgap, then I'm for that.

Eric P. thanks for stopping by THE Blog.

V

AK,

Yeah, those suits alway get a lot of play. LOL! Man, I can't wait for this off-season transactions to start. One last time:

3 team trade:

Lakers trade Mihm to Chicago for Duhon and the 16th pick.

Lakers trade Duhon, Cook, and Walton to Portland for Miles and Steve Blake.

Chicago get a big man that they're seeking.
Portland gets rid of Miles plus as a bonus for taking him off their hands they throw in Blake. They get a player with a high basketball I.Q. (a team player, which they sorely need) in Walton. Plus Portland can market the return of a Walton to the organization. I mean Bill Walton was the center for their only Championship. It makes for a great story. They also get a defensive player (which they sorely need) in Duhon, and a spot shooter in Cook. I mean if Zack Randolf needs anything it a couple of player who understand the team concept (Walton and Duhon). All for the price of getting rid of Miles? I say do it.

The Lakers get immediate help in Mile and Blake and perserve their future by not trading Bynum. Don't underestimate the value of Steve Blake. He has a reliable mid-range jumper. He's a gym rat. He's not stupid, he doesn't rely on those stupid 3 point jump shots. Miles give us great flexability. Plus we get the 16th pick and hold on to our 26th pick to add 2 players. Shawnee Williams and G. Diaz. Anyone worried about Miles attitude should think of Rodman in Chicago with PJ. I mean, Miles is no Rodman.

Forget the number 2 pick. It's too expensive for Odom or Bynum. Chris Mihm can't buy it for us. But Mihm could get us the 16th with Duhon.

mike

Fish guy,

Boozer has an expensive contract that runs through 2009 (with a player option in 2010 I can't picture him not exercising, given how much it pays him). Thus, I can't imagine he wouldn't mess up the 07-08 plan, unless the Lakers traded LO for cap space. I personally wouldn't touch Boozer. He's always hurt and seems to have some attitude issues. And while he can definitely play, I don't think he'll ever be as good as he was in the East.

Also, everyone needs to remember sometime when proposing trade scenarios involving George. In a sign and trade, Devean has to agree to it and he basically dictates salary terms. It's not a matter of the Lakers just coming up with a contract and shipping him to another team. Of the three principles involved (Devean, Team X, the Lakers), the Lakers have the least amount of power. I only say this because I see people using George in a lot of scenarios, often involving teams I can't imagine him wanting to join, unless Team X is willing to really overpay him, which I seriously doubt will happen.

AK

Why Darius Miles? Put Miles in with team leaders Kobe Bryant and Lamar Odom and he'll have the proper influence and his game should excel. Darius Miles would work as a Laker. Put him in any other uniform and it's the same old Miles, which is too bad for him.

Laker Tom made a suggestion to me the other day about keeping track of Miles and Bonzi Wells stats and compare them at the end of the season and the one with the with the worse stats has to eat his words. Now that was plain dumb. Why? Because my Miles scenario only works if he's a Laker. If he's anywhere else we won't see much. It's about the dynamics as a Laker not numbers. Plus he issued that little challenge by addressing Jon K. Then he put my name it 2 post later. Either way the little challenge doesn't make any sense.

mike

AK,

People who involve D. George just don't know they're talking about. That's why anyone who involves George can't be taken seriously, in a blog kind of way. D. George is out of the equation as far as trade speculation goes.

mike

Andrew Z,

The Bill Simmons NBA draft column is the gold standard and basically can't be touched. I say this as both a realist and a huge Simmons fan. We'll simply be shooting for some very entertaining silver. Or at least better than die-cast metal. haha

AK

Michael T,

I like your trades but I don't think the deal with Portland works salary-wise. With us (and I think Portland) over the cap salaries basically have to match. Miles makes about $7.5 million on his own so we would have to send more money their way. To make it work we might have to include Aaron McKie as well (I know, it hurts but sometimes we have to do what we have to do). Those are just stupid details but I like the general idea. i think Miles is a good player for us to target. We can get him for cheap and he has quite a bit of "upside" (getting ready for my draft watching).

Also, it's a toss-up for me between Blake and Duhon and which I'd like more. i've seen Duhon play more, but the only times I've seen Blake he torches the Lakers. Kind of makes you want to keep him just to stay away from that. Anyway, a line-up with Kobe, LO, Kwame, and Miles would be pretty darn tough no matter who you threw in at point (maybe Duhon just because he's better defensively).

Why do people think we have a chance at LeBron? A guy that good won't want to leave his hometown when they've given him the keys to the city.

Mike T.,

I don't know if I'd go so far as to say "out of the equation." If the proposed deal was reasonable, involved a team Devean would like, and helped balance salaries, it could happen. But you're definitely right that a S&T isn't the "given" that it sometimes seems to be presented as in various proposed trades. Especially because nobody's going to overpay to get Devean (bizarre, unforseen situations aside). I imagine the offers he'll get will be more or less the same. Most teams would be better off getting him as an FA and taking away his leverage of controlling a S&T going through or not.

AK

Rubin,

I agree. I think the 2003 Draft class that everyone is waiting for in free agency will all be signed to max extensions by their current teams before they even become free agents. It's about 99% guaranteed that Lebron, Carmelo, D-Wade, and Bosh all sign big extensions. Therefore it's stupid to save cap space for these guys. THe only thing I could see us clearing and saving cap space for is the ability to make a trade for a big time player and be able to absord their salary without matching it in a deal.

Hey relax Mike T.!!! You don't need to criticize everyone who doesn't think like you. Just have fun w/ this like everyone else. If this isn't fun enough for you, go back to your Pokeman cards.

I've watched a lot of people put the D Miles scenarios out there, and I have to say, I just don't get it. What about his game makes you think he'd succeed in the triangle? Yeah, he's athletic, which the Lakers need, but what else? I'm not willing to say the quiet, hardworking kid who played with the Clips is gone forever (I'd love to see Miles bounce back), but I wouldn't take on his contract to find out. But the bigger issue is his skill set. I just don't see how it fits.

As for Boozer, I don't want him either. There's something about a guy who has seemed to tank it in Utah in an effort to get out (after what happened to get him there in the first place) that makes him unappealing. And if he's not tanking, he's incredibly injury prone, which is not good either. Plus, I just think he's covered in bad mojo.

Finally, I know he's been tossed around in the hope he'll fall to the Lakers, but don't look for Sefolosha to get there. Our understanding is the Lakers were set to work him out, but his agent canceled- meaning he believes his guy will be gone at 26.

BK

Everything needs to be based on how long Kobe can play at this level? I don't think that more than 3-4 years should be counted on. That means that any moves that are made really need to pay off within that time frame, or the team will be back in a rebuilding mode.
To base plans for the future on Bynum being a major contributor by then is foolish. He is a complete unknown at this point. So management has two basic options:
They can hope that Lamar, Luke, Mihm, Brown, et al, continue to improve, add a perimeter player with a Bruce Bowen-type game (strong defender, can hit the open outside shot), which would (assuming that the improvement occurs) make them contenders in the 2007-8 season.

Or they can try to get a significant addition to Kobe now (i.e. Garnett, Jermaine O'Neal), even if that requires trading Odom and Bynum, which would make them contenders starting next year, but and likley for 2-3 years after, but then would probably result in a major rebuild.

Personally I think that the second option is the best. THe first option has too many question marks, and too big a chance of wasting Kobe's prime.

BK,

I think the Miles idea gets thrown out strictly on the fact that he's an athletic young guy who some (including me) see as a player who needs a fresh start. I think the Lakers current situation puts them in a place where they need to take risks on players (i.e. Kwame Brown) and hope to hell Phil Jackson earns his $10 million per and gets something out of them. The alternatives at this point are riding out the current squad with small additions (i.e. Marcus Banks) or making a big deal to get youth and cap space (i.e. LO for #2 and #16). The fact that the Lakers kind of hang in limbo right now in regards to where they stand in the Western Conference (i know they were "one rebound away" but chances are that rebound would have been grabbed by Amare Stoudamire) makes things more difficult.

I guess I'm in the camp that feels this team with minor additions struggles to make the playoffs next year. I see a lot of the teams ahead of them staying there and the teams below them getting nothing but better (i.e. Kings, Rockets, Warriors(?)). I know having a year under their belts in this system will have an impact, I just don't think it's as great as people think.

Damn you BK, for jumping on my next point regarding Miles! But yeah, I'm in agreement.

And I hate saying it, because I've got a soft spot for the kid. While I certainly don't know him well, I was around him a decent amount during his first couple seasons with the Clips and really liked him. Plus, being from St. Louis, I'd been following his progress since HS. The dark turn he's taken since bouncing around the league is genuinely disheartening to watch. But while that's obvously not impossible to overcome, it can't be discounted, either. Especially with that contract and his health issues.

But more importantly, like BK said, I just picture him as an awful fit in the triangle. He's a terrible shooter and by his own admission, can lose focus when not directly involved with the offense. In a system like the triangle, where you're constantly looking to move and create situations without the ball, that could be a real problem. Ever since leaving the Clips, he hasn't adapted well to new schemes in general. Plus, the stuff he does do well (run the break, jump out of the gym) doesn't come into play a whole lot. Other than providing some athleticism (and granted, the team desperately needs it), I don't see the match.

Again, I'm geniunely rooting for the best with Miles. I read a recent interview with him and he seems nothing short of miserable in the NBA right now. It's sad to see, even if he's bringing the problems on himself, since it's such an about face from where he started. But I don't think this is the team to bring him out of the funk, unfortunately.

AK

Doubles and triples my friends...let's not panic, especially because shaq might win another ring. like Eric P said, we were conceivably one rebound away from the finals. granted, the suns were minus tim thomas and amare, but who's to say those guys will be a force next year, if ever? in my opinion, i don't think amare will ever be the same player. it's a shame, but do i feel sorry for phoenix...hell no! WITH REGARDS TO THE DRAFT, WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO TRADE ODOM FOR DRAFT PICKS FROM CHICAGO? it makes no sense to me. we were the youngest team in the playoffs this year and like phil said, "we made some noise." this team only needs a couple of players, mainly a PG to start alongside KOBE and a multi-dimensional player off the bench. we can get these two players via trade. we can package the right players to come up with the right mix. the LAKERS have chemistry. let's not make hasty moves just to make moves. look at the west...we can compete. we are right there. we gained a ton of experience this year and the loss to phoenix will galvanize this team. let this team develop. we can find the pieces we need through free agency and trades.

06/07 Lakers:

KOBE/free agent/profit
BANKS/smush/sasha
ODOM/luke
KWAME/braveheart
SOCKS/mihm

with this lineup, our bigs are interchangeable, as our our guards. we can play small...play big...up tempo...halfcourt sets. defensively, we're good on the perimeter. inside we can rebound like mad and possibly have a shot blocker in Socks.

Faith:

Win now or win later? I think your post answered a key part of the question posed by Eric Pincus and debated relentlessly in the blog with your post:

"I think the management itself believed that we had no shot of advancement as a team this season, so the offseason "moves" of 04 were not really "big" but this season is another story."

I agree that the Lakers did not believe the team could win now before last season. As a result, the team focussed on winning later and refused to give more than a two year contract to any free agent.

Due to how the team performed at the end of the season and in the playoffs combined with how wide open the road to an NBA championship now appears, I think management now believes they can win now.

That's why I have hunch that the Lakers may make a major trade to move up in the draft. Despite the weakness of this draft, I think the Lakers have their eye on a player or two on another team or in the draft that they think can help them win now.

The dilemma is that I think Eric may have been right when he said it appears the Lakers want both to win now and win later, which basically means holding onto Bynum no matter what. This means to me that it may well by Odom who may be traded.

While I trust the team to make the right moves, I really don't want to trade Odom. But I also don't want to trade Bynum and I realize that Mihm would not bring back enough to enable us to win now.

The one issue that I have with Eric's column is whether or not it makes any sense to try and save cap space for 2007/8 if we want to win now. I think we should abandon that strategy as there is very little chance of LeBron or Chris Bosh being available considering the way the CBA works now.

Bottom line, we should try to win now even if it means making a major trade and giving up a chance at a superstar free agent down the road but we should also try to win later by refusing to trade Andrew Bynum.

AK and BK,

You do see the small glimmer of a silver lining in Miles though, don't you? Like I said, my opinion is based on the fact that I don't think this Laker roster (and what our future roster looks like with our guaranteed contracts and lack of cap space) competes for the Western Conference title, let alone a championship. Call me crazy but I'm having a tough, TOUGH time seeing LO as a 20-10 guy and Kwame as a 12/14-10 guy on a consistent basis. After those two it's a quick and deep drop to the next guys.

Plus, I find that fist-knock-on-the-top-of-the-head thing endearing.

To quote Michael T.: "That's why the core is:

Kobe
Odom
Brown
Bynum"

He's right... again.

This is really turning into Bizzaro World.

GO LAKERS!

I think we should focus on having Kwame Brown play power forward, not center. Sure, he shined at the end of the year as center, but with his athleticism he should be able to play power forward. If I'm not mistaken, during his exit interview, Phil Jackson told him just that: You need to focus on playing power forward next year. And, if I'm not mistaken, Kwame humbly admitted that it was his responsibility to gain enthusiasm for playing this role if it is to the benefit of the team.

So...

With all this trade talk about Chris Mihm. That puts Andrew Bynum at the starting center position. I don't think he's ready for that, yet.

Jon's Starting Five for 2007:

Banks
Kobe
Lamar Odom
Kwame Brown
Chris Mihm

Only a tune-up, but what a big difference a little engine service can do.

GO LAKERS!

AK and BK:

Unlike the relocated Dodgers, the Yankees ARE the greatest franchise in Major League Baseball with 26 (count'em) World Championships, even dwarfing the 9 NBA Championships that the Lakers have.

As a loyal Yankee fan, I suggest if you really wanted to reach the top of your profession, then a Yankee Blog for the New York Times would be you best bet. The Daily News Yankees blog currently rules the big apple. If you were to be given an opportunity to do a blog for the world's greatest sports franchis in the world's greatest newspaper, you would be foolish not to eagerly take it.

Vman and Derek:

LeBron is going to sign an extension for sure. Even if he didn't, he is an East Coast guy and would want to play for the Nets in their new Brooklyn arena for his rapper buddy.

We should abandon the LeBron strategy right now and use the money to get Kobe the help he needs to win now.

#2 picks:

1985 2. Wayman Tisdale, Oklahoma Indiana
1986 2. Len Bias, Maryland Boston
1987 2. Armon Gilliam, UNLV Phoenix
1989 2. Danny Ferry, Duke L.A. Clippers
1991 2. Kenny Anderson, G Tech New Jersey
1993 2. Shawn Bradley, BYU Philadelphia
1995 2. Antonio McDyess, Alabama Clippers
1997 2. Keith Van Horn, Utah 76ers
2000 2. Stromile Swift, LSU Vancouver
2002 2. Jay Williams, Duke Chicago
2003 2. Darko Milicic, Serbia Detroit


Just say no to the #2 pick!!!!!!!! It's bad luck.

Jon K and Michael T,

How can Kwame Brown be considered part of our core in the same sentence as Andrew Bynum? Last I checked Kwame sucked relentlessly as a 4 and I'm guessing if a choice had to be made between one or the other as our starting center of the future, Andrew Bynum gets the nod. I think Kwame is definitely available in a trade, but his contract makes him basically unmovable. Again, I still don't understand the trading for Kwame (and the big contract with third year guaranteed) followed by the drafting of Bynum. Whatever.

the wolf:

i agree that it is foolish to give up a chance to win now waiting for lebron. i think you may be right that the two of them might not be the best playing together. there is only one ball and only so many shots. what's with the all caps shouting? let your words do the talking, please. i almost thought it was a post by stephen and skipped it.

Let's say the Lakers had whatever amount of money they needed to sign any free agent this offseason, who would you want them to sign and why? I can't think of one guy out there that seems worth it to me, especially for the money they are going to get.

AK/BK,

Have to agree with you both, and just about half of everybody in here...NO Boozer, and NO Miles. If Tex Winter thought Lamar was tough to get into the triangle, whoa, Miles would be a complete TRAIN WRECK. I, like many of us, have been watching Miles since he was a rookie Clipper, however, I never saw anything that special about him. He is very athletic, but as has been over mentioned, not very proficiant at anything else.

Boozer IS bad Mojo..no questions asked. Never, never, never.... (Kobe + Boozer = Too much for anybody to resist making fun of)

So, as everybody else has started doing, I'll put in my two cents.
1. Lakers need to throw out any remaining "plan" for 07 or 08. I honestly never thought there was a plan because there just couldn't be. Last year and with this years "Alan Houston" rule it has all about getting rid of old players with high payrolls.
2. This off-season will mark the ability of Mitch and his staff. We've all seen how increadibly open the league is right now, and as Eric P. said on his Laker blog, the Lakers had a hell of a chance at getting to AT LEAST the Conf. Finals. We actually might have even made it to the Finals in which case, people would be watching!
3. MUST KEEP Bynum..he is 18 years old..again, 18 years old. He will be 19 in October, so lets actually give him some PLAYING time before we write him off. If he jumps more than 3 inches at all next year, he WILL be a factor. Maybe not a force yet, but a factor.
5. Forget frugal spending. We have our full Mid-Level and Bi-Anual exceptions to use. We must make the best possible use of that this year and not throw it away on a washed out old dog like Aaron Mckie. I'd liked Aaron's game alot (FIVE YEARS AGO), but we can't afford more mistakes like that. Bring in a good veterean player with at least 3-5 years left in him and that would be great. Use the Bi-Anual for a guy like Tony K. or somebody who might have a little triangle experience for a boost.
6. Draft like we mean it. Again, we cannot afford to pick anybody who has the tag "project" attached to him. We all know the draft isn't as glamorus as we'd like it to be, however, it may be one of the deepest draft's in some time. We should have no problem finding a player that would help us in some way in this draft. Even if we stay pat at #26, we should still be able to find someone. Lets not forget the Lakers were once (under Jerry) able to find steals in the draft..i.e. (Nick "the Quick", Kobe Bryant, Dfish, etc.)

Thanks for keeping the great Blog-sphere going in the offseason guys, and for giving us a super fun, however unproductive, way to waste our working hours!

Jack R, nice post. But I dont think we can even get the #2 by itself let alone the 2 AND the 16 for Mihm.
For that to be the case, youd have to assume if Mihm were in the draft as he is now, he'd be the unanimous #1 pick (not even a possible #1 cuz then the #2 team might as well gamble he'll be there at 2).
Also, I dont really understand GM Rule #1: Trade height for height. (or its other version, Never trade big for small.) Now, Im never one to underestimate the value of height...bigger is better. (which is basically what phil thinks) But a more accurate phrase would be "Bigger is better...unless its not better." so while an avg big man has more value than an avg small guy, he may not have more value than a small guy thats just better. I have no problem giving up height if I think it makes my team better as a whole.

As far as Eric P. I think he makes a lot of good points (haha ok although theyve been mentioned many times here before). The Lakers are at a crossroads like we havent seen in the past 6 years. They really should decide what their plan is. The problem is, it gets a little trickier in the real world...becuz of fans. Lets just assume trading Odom WAS the correct decision. Well, such a move would basically mean the Lakers are tanking an entire year and that will not go over well with season ticket holders. Thus, the Lakers likely will try some sort of middle ground.
But Eric makes a good point in that there are legitimate arguments for both sides. (Win now or Win Later).

Im always kinda torn whether we should wait on Lebron. I strongly disagree that Lebron and Kobe cannot coexist. The only reason they wouldnt be able to is ego. But their games mix very well actually. (Unlike Francis and Marbury). Kobe gets labeled as a selfish ball hog, but look at what he did in the Suns series? Kobe must struggle with his 2 opposing emotions of "being the best ever" and "winning championships". And I think it shows in his career, even during the championship years. He strives for greatness, but when playoffs come around he turns into "Playoff Kobe" who is all about winning. He'd look for shaq, get assists, and score or take over when appropriate. People talk about how good Wade is this series, but I really dont think he matches the overall great play of Playoff Kobe during our championships. On the flip side Lebron is labled as unselfish cuz of his great passing ability, but he actually dominates the ball quite a bit. But ideally, Lebron would have the ball more than kobe as he has such great point forward skills. And although Kobe can run the point also, he is also extremely good at just picking his spots and picking the defense apart with is versatile scoring and shooting ability.
But you look at what the heat are doing cuz of wade and without shaq being a big factor. Now imagine we have 2 players even BETTER than Wade! If Lebron were to come to LA, Im almost sure they'd win a championship together within a few years of playing together.

The tricky part is, what are the chances that he'll even come. Now, I think it can potentially be a mistake to just blow it off and say he wont come. Even tho its unlikely he will, the payoff might be worth the risk.
If youre playing poker and your opponent has pocket A's and you have pocket 2's. Do you call or do you fold? Well the answer isnt one or the other. If theres enough money in the pot, you call, even tho you think you'll lose. Why? Cuz the payoff far exceeds the investment you made.
This is the case for Lebron.

The other side is...just because you choose "Win Now"...doesnt mean you'll win it all either. It just means you give yourself a better shot to win. But the reality is...its not easy winning championships (ask Stockton and Malone). You can have a good team and not win it all.

Now before I get lynched, I want to say Im just throwing these out there. As of now I'm still in the "Win Now" camp. The smart move would be to "fold your hand" (aka scrap the 08 plan) and "cut your losses" (missing out on earl or raja or others cuz of the plan) and move on. But again, we are already more than halfway invested in The Plan and so it makes it difficult to part with sometimes.
And I'm not arguing to argue but its just that I'm still somewhat near the fence on this topic. Cuz with Lebron, I dont just see a championship, I see another dynasty in the making.

MAGIC=GOAT,

That's pretty funny.

wiZo,

Good poker analogy, but the way I see it, the Lakers seems to be calling every bet to the river in hopes of hitting an inside straight. I'd prefer them to either fold the hand or go all-in and hope for the best. If they get busted then you ante up and try and again.

kwame is a center so stop putting him as a PF.
jordan with all the "ah my god" jumps falls and stoping for 2 years went until he was 36 so kobe who trains harder has better fitness and as much hops i think would last more than 36 since he shoots more and better than MJ.
i read an articale about the boston and how when their second pic (a steal coz they were the champs) died of overdose and they couldnt have a higher pick since the were good untiul the mid 90 they had a huge problem rebuilding.guys a futur hall of famer should be a good role player when he is young.that is he isnt a superstar.so keep bynum used him of the bench .keep odom coz he will demand double team and take heat from kobe .
kwame will be kept coz he could yet develop has too much contract to be traded and is the only post defender until bynum develops.
we are not a good team we are not a bad one we are normal but have alot to get better.dont fool around with it .

Jack Ross Thomas III:

Excellent post. Welcome to the blog.

Your point about depth affecting teams in the playoffs was right on. The Mavs and Suns were perfect examples. Had we not lost Chris Mihm we would have beaten the Suns for sure. The weird wrinkle is that the only reason we even came close was because we had center Kwame Brown in reserve.

And I also loved the phrase "the artist formerly known as #8" as a cool way to refer to Kobe.

Regarding your trade proposal of Mihm and #26 for the Bulls #2 and #16, we have discussed this trade in depth already in the blog. I first proposed trading Mihm for the Bulls #2 to take Brandon Roy several weeks ago.

Basically, AK has realistically pointed out that there is no way that Mihm would have that much value to Chicago. As much as I have pimped Mihm's value, I reluctantly had to agree with him. It would be a great trade if the Isaaih Thomas were the GM of the Bulls instead of Paxton.

Regarding Thabo Sefolosha, I am the official leader of the Thabo bandwagon and have probably posted a couple of thousand words pimping him as the perfect draft choice for the Lakers.

As you stated, he is a great 1-on-1 defender with 4 years pro experience in Europe who could start immediately as our point guard. The comparisons to Josh Howard and Boris Diaw are tantalizing.

Check the recent threads and do a search for Thabo. You will really enjoy all of the stuff I have posted. I would estimate that half of the blog has aleady joined the Thabo bandwagon.

To date, I have been pretty steadfast in not trading Lamar or any of our three centers, Chris Mihm included. If the Bulls would accept the deal you proposed, I would jump at the opportunity and immediately take Roy and Thabo.

Unfortunately, the only way I think we could make this fly would be to trade Lamar for the Bulls #2 and #16 in order to then draft Roy and Thabo.

As I have stated several times, I have a hunch that the Lakers are going to make a real splash in order to move up in the draft. It is possible that this is exactly what may be in the works.

MAGIC=GOAT,

That's pretty funny.

Posted by: Andrew Z | June 20, 2006 at 11:33 AM

thanks Andrew. but, i probably should have omitted Len Bias. i feel bad about that one.

question...you don't think Socks and Kwame can coexist? my thing is, we really don't know. they're both pretty mobile. they can run the floor. it'll be year 2 in the triangle. i think we should give it a shot until proven otherwise.

the wolf

do a search for "brandon roy" on any of the last four blog threads and you will overwhelm with the number of posts already discussing the same trade. it all started when the lakers worked out roy and paxton said he liked mihm. ak is probably right that mihm is not worth the #2 pick in the draft, even in a weak on like this one.

wisper instead of SHOUTING.

Eric:

Thanks for your article and for contributing to the blog. I think your chiming in here gives you another forum to earn readers for your articles.
As to remarks regarding plagiarism, I think we can all agree that great minds think alike.

Thanks also for the information regarding the value of the trade exception. It adds a very interesting wrinkle to the whole free agency salary cap subject.

If I may, I have a couple of questions that I am hoping you might answer for us:

The first is regarding the Lakers ability to sign free agents. Per HoopsHype, the Lakers had salaries of $72M last year and are projected at $66M next year, the diff being expiring contracts for George, Divac, and Slava, less increased pay for Kobe and others. Does this mean that the Lakers will have $6M extra to offer to free agents in addition to the MLE?

The second is regarding Bonzi Wells or Speedy Clacton. Have you heard any news from the Lakers or anyone associated with the team of any interest in trying to sign either of these veterans as free agents for the Lakers?

Thanks in advance for posting your response. And keep up the good work in HoopsWorld.

Jon K:

You mean "triple-doubles," don't you?

I dont understand why people want the trade exception so badly. even with a 12 mil trade exception.... NO TEAM WOULD WANT TO TRADE THEIR A GOOD PLAYER WITH MATCHING SALARY FOR NOTHING IN RETURN BUT MONEY. why would they trade lets say Boozer for only cap space when they can trade Boozer for another player? what do they get out of trading for the trade exception that they dont for a real player? NOTHING!!!

and people tend to forget the use of cap space... TO SIGN A PLAYER!! so tradeing odom for cap space just means the cap space will be used for someone else. its not like oh we have so much cap space, we are so good. is trade Odom hoping to sign another player in a few years to the MAX really help the lakers?!?!? Odom's just about to peek and we want to dish him for a player like ...lets say Paul Pierce or maybe Rashard Lewis for more money?!?!!? while wasting Kobe's prime and getting player with no triangle experience or established chemistry?

i'll be the first to say it, if the lakers do trade Odom for draft picks this year.... KOBE WILL DEMAND A TRADE IN 2-3 YEARS. MARK MY WORD! he'll be so frustrated waiting and be patient with developing these newbies to playing in the NBA. the lakers needs to keep the core and keep adding pieces.

and why do we have to have the MAX cap space? what players dont play for less than max these days?! the only use for max is for players like Lebron, Wade, etc... and they arent going to come to the lakers to play Kobe's sidekick.

Edwin et al:

The one thing new that I found in Eric's article was the proposition that the Lakers were trying to both win now AND win later and how that may end of diluting the chance of achieving either goal.

It is the dilemma of not wanting to give up Bynum or a chance at LeBron down the road versus making a move now for the free agents, trades, or draft choices that would help us win now.

I think that rehashing the issue gives us all an opportunity to refocus on the basic question, which was well stated by Eric with his title:
"Win Now or Win Later." That is the crux of the Lakers' dilemma.

MAGIC=GOAT,

I'm basing my "can't exist" theory on Kwame's performance at the four when Mihm was our starting center. If Kwame could develop as a four it would be HUGE to this team. In all honesty, I think it's probably the biggest thing this team needs right now. I definitely want to see how that works out starting next season, although i don't believe Mihm will be back so Kwame might stay at the 5 for now. If Kwame can find a way to play the 4 alongside Socks I think our frontcourt with LO at SF would be the best in the league in a couple years.

Mike T:

Great idea for the draft. AK and BK, this should be a must. We would all be logged in and ready to comment on each choice. It would really be fun, especially after all of the prognosticating we have been doing the last few weeks. And after having to watch other teams in the Finals.

Please...

Mike T:

The wizard of the draft again works wonders to get Darius Miles into a Laker uniform. A little of this for a little of that, plus a little of this less a little of that, and presto: Darius is a Laker. What about Corey?

BK:

Horrible news about Thabo. Where did you get the info from. What is correct is that Thabo will not last to #26 at this point, but if the Lakers move up in the draft, they may still have a shot at him. Therefore, the fact that they at least are aware of him may be good news. At least that is what I am hoping.

AZ,

The only reason why Kwame belongs to the core as relentlessly fought by Mike T. cuz' nobody wants Kwame (contract + basketball IQ + trade value) so he becomes immovable. I just want to know if he's playing 5, whether he will learn how to catch and dunk next season??? Lol!

LakerTom,

If you subscribe to what E. P. is saying that Odom's value commands a lot of good players, perhaps we might try what Steven has been saying all along, we could also command better players if we deal our No. 1 & No. 2. We can save a lot of cap space for the next 10 years...... LakerTom, I hope your opinion is not swayed by what you read in the Hoopsworld. (Jk. only...)

Exhelodrvr, Dave, Magic=Goat,

Great ideas on the future of the Lakers. Let us preserve our status quo with little trimmings OR go with the BEST complement players of Kobe, if available (KG or JO) to win the Championship in two years' time, anything less is not worth trying.

If we mix the "has beens" + "promising neophytes" we'll always defend the 7th or 8th seed in the West.

MAGIC=GOAT:

The reason that the Lakers might want to trade Lamar for Chicago's two picks (#2 and #16) are (1) They love Brandon Roy and see him as the guard of the future to play with Kobe and would use #16 to take Alexander Johnson or another power forward to replace Lamar, (2) they love Thabo Sefolosha as their future point guard at #16 and would then use Chicago's #2 for a power forward to replace Lamar, (3) they want to try and win now but still keep flexibility in the event that LeBron or someone else is available in 2007/8, which the trade exception for Lamar would allow.

andrew z:

i agree except that i think the Lakers biggest need is a point guard or should i say, a better guard alongside KOBE.

laker tom:

exactly, what about corey? man, imagine this guy next to kobe? can you say best guard tandem in the league?

LakerTom-

Yeah, they could still get him if they move up, and it's pretty clear they're interested in trying to do that. So keep your fingers crossed if you're holding out for Thabo.

BK

It's just plain sad that some people think Lamar is worth a draft pick. Are people forgetting that he was part of the Shaq trade? Would you trade Shaq for draft picks? (Maybe you shouldn't answer that. Especially after his performance in the Finals)

Besides, I don't want more rookies!!!! Please no. What was half our problems this year? Inexperience! Going out and acquiring more young, inexperienced players isn't going to do anything for us.

Faith:

Good press re our guy Rajon Rondo and his defense from the Atlanta-Journal for his workout with Marcus Williams for the Hawks:

"Rajon Rondo was probably even more impressive than initially expected. He was a 'terror' in the defensive drills and a guy that those who observed the workout believe can someday be an All-Defensive type of player. He was certainly the athlete he been advertised to be and is a physical specimen, perhaps without peer at his position in this draft. While his shot (the form) is in need of some tweaking, there's nothing else in his repertoire that needs major work. According to my spy, he left everyone thinking that the unquestioned two best point guard prospects in this draft were on the floor Monday morning."

Well the Lakers winning now or later is the question and if we want to wait to win later that is a HUGE mistake. It's gonna take bynum 4-5 years before he's really ready offensivly and defensivly (see Jermaine Oneal) and by that time Kobe will be more in the mode of an Eddie Jones (Just with a better shot cuz its Kobe) then we'll have to ship out Kwame and we wont get much in return so i dont think phil would wanna coach us any longer so we'd be wastimng our time in every body learning the system for years and then abandoning it after P.J. leaves. If i was the Lakers G.M. (which i plan to be in 15 yrs lol) i would trade BYNUM (and yes I said Andrew "the future of the NBA" Bynum) our 26th pick and chris Mihm and B.Grants expiring contract to the NEW YORK Nicks for EDDIE CURRY. Then with the free agent aquisition of Marcus Banks we'd be looking pretty good. The knicks would also go for it because thier probably realizing they need to rebuild and already have thier future point gaurd and power fowards in Nate Robinson and Channing Frye. So we'd give them thier future center in bynum and a center who could contribute now (Mihm) while they try and develope Bynum. So our lineup would look something like

Pg-M.Banks/S.Parker
Sg-K.Bryant/Kareem Rush
Sf-L.Walton/L.Profit
Pf-L.odom/Turiaf
C-E.Curry/K.Brown

And I wouldnt stop thier. Kwame Brown is still not a very good player but had a decent second half to the season and a decent playoffs. So I would look for a team that is loaded with multi talented small fowards but no true center. HHMMMM. The ATLANTA HAWKS!!!!!! So i trade Kwame to the hawks for Josh Childress and now we are in the bussines. I do that trade because Kwame would not want to play second fiddle to Curry so he gets a chance to compete for a starting job wit ATL and Childress comes in as the same type of player as luke walton but with WAY!!!!! more upside and chance to develope. Then luke can still come in as a leader on the second unit with smush who will then be a vet in the triangle. SO the linup would be.

Pg-M.Banks/Smush
Sg-Kobe/kareem rush
Sf-Josh Childress/L.Walton
Pf-L.Odom/Turiaf
C-Eddy Curry/M.Douthit and or veteran F.A.

with that team you cant tell me we couldnt compete (if P.J. and kobe could get curry motivated to play up to his potential...But if they could do it with Kwame they could do it with Curry)

Lance.P

When I said "little trimmings" let's try to remove those dead branches with brown leaves. You all watched the playoffs with Phoenix, you could name a number of players who belong to this category. Bring in players from our #26, #51 and FA exempts. and Summer Leagues who can shoot the three, make a decent FT @ 70% and not afraid to slam dunk (not literally) Steve Nash, Tony Parker or Mike Bibby.

Andrew Z: " I can't think of one guy out there that seems worth it to me, especially for the money they are going to get." ---that's been my point all season long. This draft and this free agency market just isn't as good as in other years (though it's been pointed out to me that you can still find "gems") However I myself am unwilling to just scrap our plan and our present for "gems." It seems to me that winning now and later (or at least trying to) is being ridiculed (no that's the wrong word), made unlikely...I believe it's entirely likely, I think that's what we did when we drafterd Kobe, and signed Shaq. We gave ourselves the chance to win both in the 90s, and as it turned out in the new millenium. Retaining Kobe also gave us a chance to win both now and later...Kobe is no you know who, he might be a "beat up all the time--no call guard" (at least nowadays), but his conditioning and mentality can and will last.

My only question is, with all the "trade" ideas being put down, how much is Chris Mihm really worth. Its said that you can't trade big for small, yet Mihm apparently doesn't have enough value (even as a big) to command Duhon, or a #2. Bynum, Kobe, LO is untouchable no question (I'd even add Turiaf, I really like him...but for the right price, he too will go).

I love this discussion.

Imagine if we can add Banks and Miles to the core. Our defense would be second to none. We would be able to match-up with the Dallas' and Phoenix's. And the triangle would create open shots. One thing I've noticed about the triangle is that it allows a lot of opportunities for an open mid-range J. I know Miles can hit the mid-range j. I can see Miles going for 15 pts. a game just shooting 15 footers all day. Combine Miles' mid-range game with Kobe's all around game, with Kwame and Lamar's inside game, and some 'penetrate and dish' from Banks. That would be nice.

Banks
Kobe
Miles
Lamar
Kwame

I would be a happy Laker fan if this were the case going into next year. But it is all speculation....

Andrew Z.,

I know, bro. It hurts to agree with Michael T., but... he's right.

I have faith in Kwame. The guy is genetically gifted, okay? Everything I've read about him he seems to indicate that he's a respectful and intelligent (if a little immature) kid. And, quite frankly, he had a great Bio-Chrono reading. I think that under the tuteledge of Kareem, Phil Jackson, and Kurt Rambis he will improve, and I believe he will improve significantly (with the potential of improving remarkably) over the next two years.

The upside of a potenital-approaching Bynum and a potential-approaching Kwame backed up by a team-minded Kobe and a potential-approaching Lamar (with some competent defense-minded point guard) is phenomenal.

I think Mitch would be stupid to mess with any of that. Our coaching staff is too strong to think otherwise.

GO LAKERS!

We're not moving up in the draft, okay?

We need a player who can contribute right now and to get Brandon Roy we have to give up Chris Mihm which creates a major problem at the center spot. We'd have to move Kwame to center and Lamar to power forward and I don't think that supports either player's mid-term ability to master the Triangle.

I just don't think it's good for the team.

We need Speedy Claxton or Marcus Banks.

That's it.

Get rid of Smush and Devean (It hurts to say that brother, I really would like to see you long-term as a Laker). Keep Sasha. Draft an athletic player.

Get Speedy Claxton or Marcus Banks.

Keep the Core intact!

Western Conference Finals 2007
NBA Championship 2008
Two More Championships between 2009 and 2012.

GO LAKERS!

Rocky,

I was Darius Miles biggest fan when he was on the Lakers and I think the Lakers would greatly benefit from having him on the team. (The kid loves L.A.! His vocation is acting! He played great for the Clippers! He'll play better for the Lakers! He's got a solid Bio-Chrono Reading!)

However, I think the Lakers are best served by moving Kwame to power forward, not center.

People forget that Chris Mihm is a solid, improving player who is a bargain at his present salary. I know everyone is excited about him as an asset for a trade, but I'm not certain any trade is worth it.

We need to focus on getting a solid, intelligent, creative, discipline, defense-minded point guard before anything else.

I'd love to see Darius in purple and gold, but reality is reality.

GO LAKERS!

One thing to remember. While Mike is probably right that Kwame is part of the core, it's for different reasons. It's not because he is "untouchable"- that they won't entertain offers on him (like say... Kobe for example, who short of something totally off the wall isn't in the same zip code as the trading block), and more because Brown might be as difficult a guy to trade as they have on the roster. Just my opinion, but I think the demand for Kwame around the league isn't all that high. Short of giving him away- which they don't want and shoudn't want to do- he wouldn't be easy to move. GMs would be very reluctant to give up value for him at his salary and limited track record.

So yeah, he'll almost certainly be here next year and has shown the potential to be a pretty good center, but he's not "the core" in the sense that the Lakers are committed to him as a centerpiece of the team in the long term.

BK

Since we have the summer league, and the nbdl and all...what are the chances of us getting "euro" players to play in it? See that's the problem with Euro players, they're just not as accessible, how are we really going to know if T-Sef is for real (though I'm sure he wouldn't need to audition that way lol). Instead we're stuck with the Smush Parkers of the world...lol...jk.
But my question is legit, who is going to be in the summer league/nbdl, and can we get Euro players in it?

Faith,

I think Mihm could absolutely fetch Duhon (or another solid guard). It's just that he couldn't get the #2 pick or a player like Ben Gordon, in my opinion. There's a large difference. I just don't think he has that kind of value, especially considering a team would be giving up someone pretty good for a guy who they could lose in a year, since he's a FA after the upcoming season. I can't see a team doing that for Mihm unless it helps them lose a bad contract, they're on the verge of a title and looking to add depth, or clearing 4 mil from their cap would somehow make that big a difference in signing someone else. But he definitely has value, for sure.

And like John Ross Thomas said earlier (in a good post), you absolutely can trade big for small. Look at how the Lakers got Kwame. Whether or not the trade bears fruit to everyone's satisfaction is another story, but the scenario happens. It's just a matter of talent levels and making the swap appropriate. Mihm is a solid big, but he's not a superstar. He's likely gonna get you a good small, not a superstar. But the Lakers could use some good backcourt help, so that's not a bad thing, necessarily. Assuming Mihm even gets traded (which I think he will).

AK

I am curious what the other bloggers think Kwame would bring in a trade, if salary cap, length of contract, etc. were not issues, and the only considerations were current ability and potential that is likely to be realized.

AK or BK, can you answer me about Mihm's "value?" Cause it seems like he's overvalued in our minds yet undervalued by others.

Oops...nevermind, you already answered, thanks!

I didn't think of that, although Butler was a SF, Atkins was a "small." So it can be done.

I have to say the list of those #2s is scary...stay away from 2 then! lol

sorry about typing in caps earlier. i hate people who do that but... my emotion got the best of me. hahahhaha.

kwame
odom
miles
kobe
banks

80% sure ;)

Lakertom, Rondo sounds like he played really well...my only thing is more good news, elevates his trade. Why couldn't he be like Alexander Johnson (I believe, you know the dude that we were talking about earlier in the blog) who they said can't catch lol.

Thanks in advance for the "draft post." While the suits are often hilarious, I mean how many pimps can there be in the draft lol...I like to make fun of the hats. I mean you guys know I love the Lakers, but the L is not pretty...we all know what L in the forehead stands for lol. (Thank god we're winners lol).

Faith,

Everyone but Kobe Bryant is overvalued by the people on this blog.

exhelodrvr,

I don't really think Kwame would bring much to be honest. It's tough to say with the money thing thrown out since everything these days ends in "...against the salary cap", but I would be hard pressed to find a team in the playoffs this year who would trade any member of their starting five for him.

There is another reason why the Lakers should not trade Kwame Brown and why he is uniquely valuable is his great 1-on-1 defensive abilities against Shaq, Duncan, and Yao. Building a championship team requires getting players who can fill the key roles around Kobe. Kwame does this very well and might be one of the best in the league in this area. I also think that he still has tremendous upside to be a better offensive threat and help defender. While his salary is high, I believe that he will continue to improve as a Laker and should not be traded even if we got a reasonable offer. He is still a very young player who could become the player that everyone saw when he was originally drafted. Big men do take time to develop.

I remember him frustrating Duncan many-a-time. No one can move him. I'd say that's an invaluable skill to part with. Now if he could develop some better low-post moves...

Jon K,

We obviously have more to agree on than to disagree on. But I'm not sure Kwame has what it takes to be a power forward. A great power forward is the kind of guy who can shoot the ball; Ho Grant, Karl Malone, Tim Duncan, Chris Webber, etc. Where on the other hand, the great centers; Shaq, Kareem, Wilt, were mainly inside guys.

It's safe to say Kwame is not a good shooter. It's also safe to say that if Kwame slows himself down on the block, he has the ability to be dominant offensively. Defensively, Kwame is interchangeable. For those reasons, I think Kwame is better suited for the Center spot, at least on offense. Which plays to our advantage at this point because Mihm would be an ideal offensive power forward.

But with both Kwame and Mihm on the floor at the same time, our defense is too slow. In my opinion, one has to go. Since defense wins championships, the odd man out is Mihm. The only trade proposal I like that includes Mihm is the Miles proposal excluding Walton.

I Just think that Miles has a real chance to be a superstar in this league. The Lakers could be the most exciting team in the league with Darius. Darius is locked up at under 10 mil a year, which chances are could turn out to be a bargain. He's young. He's worth more than Mihm is.

And Kwame showed last year that he is a part of the Laker core. We made our playoff run last year because Kwame held it down. He needs to be given credit for that. I think there are a lot of teams who would love to have a big like Kwame. If you gave each team in the NBA a choice of whether to choose either Kwame or Mihm to be a part of each team's core. Are there any teams that would choose Mihm over Kwame? I don't think so.

We have to build with an eye towards the future.

jon 2009 2010 and 2011 coz we got kobe haha.
all of this talk about bynum is usless coz its jim s desicion and he wants to keep him and theguy could well be great and u want to trade him he is only worth 2-3 million .comme on we aint gonna win with one more guy like eddy currie.eddy man must be a knick fan haha.if this core can developp (think brown will proove u wrong and becomne big but not half as big as bynum or wat mike projects) and u can add a point guard and a couple role players we are a dynastie and no not a spurs or pistins kind of dynastie (one title each couple of years or one title and 3 finals) a chicago or boston kind of dynastie.
never forget that u have the greatest player ever and he has a point to proove so does PK in beating red to the 10th title.PJ can work with weid personaleties like kwame .lakers have always developped their players well ala kobe .when they want them they make them developp.
kobe is the present bynum is the future .why take one when u can try for both for only 3 milliom amd since the seats rise they now can afford it .

The Lamar Show,

Of course teams would want to trade their good players for nothing more than money. Let's not forget, this isn't two bucks they're throwing out, they are investing tens of millions of dollars over the lifetime of a contract in these guys, and if after a certain amount of time you feel your investment was a poor decision and someone offered you your money back, hell yeah you take it. I think Carlos Boozer is on the trading block for that particular reason. He gets paid $11 million a year and has been injured or a pain in the ass since he's been in Utah. If the owner could bail on his deal he would, in a heartbeat. And what about Portland with Darius Miles and Zach Randolf? You don't think they would do whatever is in their power to get a team to take those contracts off their hands? For god's sake, Paul Allen owns that team and he wants to get rid of it because they are losing so much money. And that's Paul Allen!!! There's a reason why the "expiring contract" is so valuable in the NBA. Every owner is always looking to cut their losses if possible. I'm willing to bet the most valuable player on the market at the All-Star break is Jalen Rose. he's a decent player and someone is going to have $16 million dollars come off the books next season when his contract is up.

Laker Tom,

Just because the Lakers salary goes from $72 to $66 million doesn't mean they have $6 million extra to spend. Since $66 million is still over the salary cap, all the have are the exemptions to spend. Unfortunately I think we're still over the cap next season, even with Brian Grant's contract coming off the books. Yikes.

chris and lakertom.
kareem would help him like he helped bynum.
keep them PF trouble other than odom we have big heart turiaf.
why not keep odom at 4 and og for a good small forward or shooting guard and move kobe to the 3 .
lakers are trying to avoide the mid 90 again.coz we were lucky if kareem didnt demand a trade after wilt retired we would have been on a long rebuilding process .we were lucky and the 1 pick for magic was also lucky the trade to get the pick for worthy was genius but our luck run out when magic got the aids and retired.james was great but coudlnt take the team up but was to good to get a lottery pick so we spent 1o years without winning a single thing. learn from u r mistakes and if u dont want to learn from ur enemeis mistakes does celtics and 20 years mean anything to u guys bynum is staying.

 
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