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Extra! Extra! (12.17)

Heading into tonight's game against Washington (where former Laker Caron Butler is thriving), the glow is still there from Friday night's double OT, comeback extravaganza. Unfortunately, among the many numbers Kobe posted, there's one worrisome mark that sticks out.  54.  That would be the number of minutes he played, on the heels of 43 and 44 minute efforts.  That's more than Phil Jackson wants.  Kobe says he's fine, but P.J. doesn't want to "extend" him that far.  That's a pretty easy strategy to devise with L.O. out of the lineup, but it's likely not the only idea bouncing around Jackson's head.  There's always something. Like relieving Kwame Brown's free throw jitters before the Hack-a-Kwame becomes the rage of the holiday season. 

What's already got everyone talking?  How about the A.I. sweepstakes, now joined by the 'Melo Suspension Watch/Continuing Disintegration of the Knicks after Saturday night's Garden brawl.

Read closely, and you'll see a little bit of Lakers Blog in this interview with Kareem.

And finally, Roland Lazenby's latest entry from the always entertaining Lakernoise blog.

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Another night in the NBA. Utah just clinched their division earlier than any team in history ‘cause of the Broadway show Denver put on last night. Given some of the punk a@$, gangsta verbiage goin’ on here, sounds like it was entertaining to the point that Stern should consider allowing brawls. It would definitely get the crowds back at Madison Square Garden. That was the first standing O the Knicks got this year.

Mark Cuban doesn’t look like the kind of guy that dies of remorse but isn’t the Steve Nash move starting to loom as one of the dumbest front office plays in NBA history? They shake him loose just before his 2 MVP and maybe a 3rd seasons? Meanwhile 14 in a row and counting. Phoenix has all the pieces this year but the style falls short. If defense still wins championships, they’ll just be regular season champs again.

I know I was hard on Kwame but he's still my 2nd favorite player behind Kobe.



Crack-a-Kwame? LOL! Now that was good.


They have ONLY ONE WIN (ATL) where they have scored UNDER 100 points. So it'll be PRETTY fitting if the fans start chanting "WE WANT TACOS" from the get go.

The WIZ are alot like the BUCKS. If they get HOT, good luck. Kobe on Gilbert and Luke on Butler should BENEFIT the Lakers, but if Jamison is playing well we MIGHT have a problem.

This may come off as an ignorant rant as I vent in between finals, but here it goes:

In a way, I liked the brawl for the following reason: I have an issue with the commissioner turning the league into a punk league. Yes I said it. Sometimes you need an old school game like the ones you saw in the 80's, where teams left it all on the floor, never gave up ground to each other, played like MEN (not gentlemen), and when it was all over, each team left the court with mutual respect. As much as Magic and Isiah had love for each other off the court, Larry and Magic, Jordan and Dumars, etc., when they were on the court battling against each other, even Jesus Christ himself couldn't get between them if the ish hit the fan and it was time to throw down. It wasn't about personal dislike, it was about respect of the team, your franchise, and protect what was yours. Nowadays, players all around act like punks. I'm sorry to say it, but when I see more attempts at drawing a charge than manning up and getting dunked on like a man, the league has become real punk. Everyone's soooooooo afraid to be on the Sportscenter Top 10 and/or get fined by Stern just because they decided to play like a man.
Here's another issue that we have to consider: Most of the players who are involved in these altercations during the game do NOT look like the majority market share of NBA fans and revenue. In the 80's, when Bird, McHale, Ainge, and Laimbeer were knocking people 2-3 rows into the stands, and it was JUST a foul, no one thought more of it than that; "oh, that's a man foul right there, suck it up and keep playing". But when a segment of players who did not reflect the NBA's majority market share (Iverson, Artest, (Carmelo) Anthony (Mason), Stephen Jackson, etc) began to conduct themselves with the same intensity on the court, it became an issue because those players did not reflect the looks (clean cut like Jordan) and values (middle class like Magic) of the majority market share of the league. You then have to throw Kobe into this equation because if he wasn't accused of raping a woman who could have been the daughter of most of the basketball beat writers, his image would be in a slightly greater light.
However, the difference between Carmelo (in this instance) and those players from the 80's is that THEY wouldn't have peddled back so fast.
To me, basketball is basketball, a sport that should not be disrespected and only real men should play. However, since Stern's running the league and IT IS 2006, players need to conduct themselves the Stern Way. Since that's the case, say goodbye to the Nuggets playoff hopes.

Nuggets Bias? what are you talking about? I could care less about the Nuggets... I'm not glad Melo got suspended but hey, if you are dumb enough to throw punches and hurt your team than the Lakers will happily take the advantage you are giving us...

But, Melo is a star. He probably gets 10-15 games rather than 20-25.

Also here is your detailed ringside analysis:
I've watched the brawl a 100 times it seems. See, everybody that's like "he's a punk, and he's a punk", they've probably never been in a hostile situation before. Somewhere where it's frenzied, everyone around you is dangerous and all that.

So to me, the #1 starter is Nate Robinson. I cant believe Nate is from my home town (Carson, CA!) starting all that. I guess he has the Napoleon complex. If he wouldnt pushed J.R. and really try to push and punk him the play would've resulted in a LOOONNNG staring match.

Then, It looks like J.R. was insulted that Nate would put his hands on him like that. Mardy fouled him then stood there with a smirk on his face as if to say, you cant do nuthin if you wanted to. J.R. got up looking like "I really want to swing but I cant". But Nate Robinson, pushed it to the edge. It's the situation where somebody says , "If you hit me first, it's going to be problems". So anyway, J.R. wrestles with Nate a little bit and Nate gets a clean shot at him because he tackled him in the crowd. So J.R. throws a punch when he gets up.

By then, Melo was over in the situation trying to survey the scene. But Jeffries gets a quick choke job to Melo's neck in the whole melee! No doubt, Melo is upset he got unjustly hit. So Melo decides he is going to get one in himself. HOWEVER, when people are holding someone back there is no reason trying to fight. How many times have you seen fights where the guy says "I'm cool", waits for everyone to let their guard down, and then pops the other person Melo was either watching too many movies or being very sleak and premeditated in his "sucker-punch".

The most astonishing thing is that Mardy Collins looks right at Melo walking toward him and punch him. Nobody is holding his hands down. Nothin. What, did he think Carmelo was coming to give him a Christmas present? What a joke? Collins isnt a fighter/enforcer/whatever. Collins is simply a hired gun by Thomas. And Thomas is trying to be a "team soldier" like he learned under John Chaney.

I'm not so apalled Carmelo gave Mardy Collins a cool one and shook the scene. Is that Not equivalent to Collins flagrant fouling Smith around the neck and then kind of letting everybody else break them up? Plus in that situation, Carmelo already got choked out once and he was going to deliver his before he left and got ambushed again. Was it exactly a straight up "punch". NO. Was he fighting fair. NO. But nobody was in that situation. EVERYTHING about the situation was CHEAP. If you go by the premise, that Carmelo's a punk for a cheap shot, then Jeffries is a punk for cheapshotting Melo, Collins is a punk for cheapshotting Smith, Nate is a punk for cheapshotting J.R., and J.R. for hitting Nate. At that point, there are no "fair fights".

BUT anyway, enough ringside analysis.

ENJOY your suspensions Knicks and Nuggets!!!!

Also, here's some ANALYSIS that you will hear HERE first. I guarantee. What school did Mardy Collins come from? Temple. Who is Temple's Coach? John Chaney. Isnt John Chaney known for sending "goons" on the court to take out players? Did he not get suspended for that? So you have a player that played 4 years under a guy that GRILLED that type of mentality in his head. Then you get Thomas who is suggesting that nobody should come in the paint.

So you think about it, now you have your answer to why he made that ridiculous foul in the first place.

I should be a sports journalist,
I wonder how many people will make THAT connection!

Laker Tom,

Dog-gon-it Tom, even when you try to compliment Smush, (and that isn't very often), it comes across as negative to me. I'm not quite sure how I became one of Smush's biggest defenders because I was really happy when we drafted Farmar, however, I feel compelled to stand with Smush under the constant barrage of criticism he receives. Smush is playing pretty well right now. Forget the last game, don't even consider it. Smush is playing pretty well.

No one has ever claimed the Smush is an all-star, certainly not me. But all the crap about Smush "pouting", or "sulking", or being a "street baller", has taken on a life of it's own. Where the hell did it come from? Every kid played street ball. When you love b-ball you play every moment you can, where ever you can. If your family doesn't live in an affluent neighborhood, near a nice recreation center, you play on the outdoor asphalt courts, and if that makes you a street baller, I guess we have a few of them.

Remember Kobe after we drafted him? As I recall he broke his wrist in a pickup game on the concrete courts at Venice Beach. Is Kobe a street baller?

Not a single one of us know what the Lakers complete defensive scheme is. When you criticize Smush he may be doing exactly what the coaching staff have ask him to do. If you noticed, Smush and Kobe have a very nice defensive trap working between them and they are able to steal a lot of balls this way. One or the other jumps his man on the wing and while easing him in a given direction pesters him enough to keep his attention and force him to turn around. While the offensive player is turning he never sees the second defender jump him from the blind side and he turns directly into that defender with the ball exposed. You can't do it on every play, but Kobe and Smush seem to be able to read each other pretty well on when it will work for them. This is something that only comes with time playing together.

The same thing is applicable on the offensive end. No one knows, except the Lakers, what Smush is supposed to do on offense. He is constantly criticized for standing on the perimeter outside the 3 point line. Guess what, That's his job! Not only to be there to take the 3 if the ball is kicked out to him, but also to be ready for transition defense if any shot is missed.

People see things differently at times, but one thing everyone has to see if they understand basketball, Smush Parker is the second best guard on this team, only Kobe is better. Jordan Farmar is a distant third, unless you consider Mo Evans a guard, (he's really a SF.), then Farmar drops to the 4th best guard on our squad.

I'm not trying to cut Farmar in any way. I like the kid and hopefully he'll continue to improve, but he has a long way to go before he threatens for the starting job. Don't be fooled by PJ's comments a few weeks ago. He was just trying to motivate Smush a little more and encourage Jordan. He did exactly the same thing with Sasha last year, but it doesn't look like that worked out too well.








Call me intellectually challenged but where was the blog referrence in the Kareem interview?


Sergio From Italy,

Its not about Americans being "puritans", Its just important that our NBA players in such a rich and great league not destroy it by acting like fools. If they continue to make scenes like this it will ultimately destroy the league.

By the way, are you a Valentino Rossi fan?

Liked Tex's comment about Smush developing a more consistent shot. That really simplifies it. There's been endless talk about him staying in front of guards that no one stays in front of. But if he was Sam C / Rip Ham deadly on that mid range jumper, he'd have as long a contract as his agent [if he has one] would want.

Mike T

I doubt this is what the Kbros are referring to but I, for one, brought up a notion the article mentioned about Kareem's coaching future being tied to Bynum's success a while back. Can't imagine that was the only time it appeared on here. Also mentioned meeting him and, as all know, he does have a way of making you sorry you said hi until your purpose or affiliation is clearly stated.

Seems like every article written about the Lakers is rooted in the blog somehow. You've probably mentioned Kareem a dozen times as well.

Mike T and Vman,

On page 2 of the interview:

" Came across the following quote in my research of your perspective on your past relationship with the press: "I always saw it like they were trying to pry. I was way too suspicious and I paid a price for it." Why so suspicious? Was there another high-profile athlete whose allegory might've informed your behavior?"

That quote he references is from the blog's interview with Kareem. Or Kareem said the exact same thing to another source, but that seems a little too coincidental. haha

We just got a kick out of seeing it come up in that writer's research.



OK, LOL! The might of the blog invades all things.



You're right that it is hard to give Smush an unqualified endorsement, even after his play last night. On the other hand, it is easy to do with Jordan Farmar.

Why is that? First, I think most fans still hold Smush’s near total collapse in the Sun’s series against him. They feel betrayed because they think rightly or wrongly think that Smush quit during that series. That’s why Smush is always under the fan’s and the blog’s microscope.

Second, I think most fans think believe rightly or wrongly that Smush does not appear to be trying or working hard on defense despite his inadequacies. He often doesn’t assume proper defensive stance and seems to give up too often when beaten on a play.

On the other hand, Farmar has not skeletons in his closet since he is a rookie and his strengths are in the exact intangible areas that with Smush are weakest – team leadership, mental toughness, and basketball IQ.

Those are the reasons why a lot of fans want Farmar to start and/or play more minutes. But don’t mistake that for any of us hoping that Smush does not play well. We are Laker fans first and want the best for our team, which is for both guys to be strong contributors. If Smush would go out and try as hard as he did last night every night, he would quickly be given a fair deal and second shot at becoming a fan favorite rather than target. Bottom line, it’s all because of Smush’s attitude. If Smush doesn’t get this, then it’s not good news for the team or him.

So just remember, we are all rooting for Smush and looking for a way to cheer for him. He just has to deliver. It’s that simple. Play hard and hustle and root for and support your teammates over yourself.



It was everybody's fault all the SAME. I just think these GUYS get paid MILLIONS and doing soemthing like this in the middle of the NBA court, is pretty f*in STUPID.


That's a great, long analysis. Allow me to give a shorter version of Carmelo's situation. That was a weak almost girl-like punch he gave him. And when he started backing up while swating at the other guys who were about to break him down, he looked even weaker. If he was "in the moment", then he would have just fought. But he knew people would be breaking up the fight, so he hit him and got of dodge. I've never seen a MAN fight like that. Carmelo is a wimp.

Laker Tom,

Jordan can be the smartest guy in the world, a natural leader and a hard worker, but that doesn't make him a better player than Smush. I personally know lots of people with the same skill set and they aren't even involved in basketball. You can't possibly believe that Farmar is a better player than Parker at this point. Watch the games without the bias you have against Smush. Maybe you'll see the same two players I see.





‘The Lakers want to prove that trading Shaq was the best decision.”—Ross Siler on

Here are some extracts from an excellent article by Ross talking about the Lakers possibly trading for KG:


There’s two other important factors to consider. I think Kobe Bryant, Phil Jackson and the organization as a whole would like to show they can win a championship without having to add a piece like Garnett. Kobe wants to prove he can lead a team to a title. Jackson wants to prove he doesn’t merely inherit championship-ready teams. And the Lakers want to prove that trading Shaquille O’Neal was the best decision long-term for the franchise.

I’m also a big believer that Lamar Odom is one of the best players to pair with Kobe if only because he is so deferential. When Kobe had 50 last season against the Clippers, Odom famously said, "It’s like God put Kobe here for us to watch him play basketball.’’

You’re going to find few stars willing to say things like that, to be so willing to take a backseat to Kobe. And Odom is the player the Lakers would have to send out to start matching salaries in any possible Garnett deal.


It is the same theme that JJ first brought up a couple of weeks ago when another series of Trade for KG posts appeared. I think Ross nailed what the Don’t Trade crew really feels with his article. I know it’s how I feel.

Thanks, Ross.


Man Roland Lazenby's blog is nothing short of spectacular. I wish he still stopped by every once in a while like he did last season.


“Jordan can be the smartest guy in the world, a natural leader and a hard worker, but that doesn't make him a better player than Smush. I personally know lots of people with the same skill set and they aren't even involved in basketball. You can't possibly believe that Farmar is a better player than Parker at this point. Watch the games without the bias you have against Smush. Maybe you'll see the same two players I see.”

Enough. I don’t know how this suddenly turned into a comparison of who was the better basketball player. I was just trying to explain to you why most posters favor Farmar over Smush. I never said that it was because Farmar was a better player. I said the bias against Smush was due to his history and his attitude problem. You Smushkateers need to dial back your refreshed confidence because most of us are skeptical that Smush can change and redeem himself. Most cats don’t change their stripes in midseason. I would love to see the “new” Smush every day because I sure did not like the “old” Smush very much. I will admit that.

And since you mentioned it, I do believe Farmar is a better point guard than Smush at this point and that over time he will become a significantly better player and star. In my opinion, Farmar is a already a better floor leader, ball handler, and passer who runs the offense, takes care of the ball, and plays defense better than Parker. Parker is still a better outside shooter with quicker hands and length on defense and a couple of inches in height but he lacks Farmar’s confidence, mental toughness, big college background, basketball IQ, and positive attitude. Give Farmar another year of hard work on his shot and athleticism and Smush’s redeeming quality will be his extra 2 inches in height.

Let’s be realistic and clear about what we are rooting for here. It is for Smush to play well enough to hang onto his starting job for the rest of the year, because next year at the latest Farmar will take over the starting point guard. We are not talking about Smush showing us that he can be the permanent starter. We’re talking about Smush saving his career as a Laker backup. So get real. Smush is a backup at best. Farmar has a better shot at winning ROY than Smush has of holding onto his starting job past the end of this year. How many “Give Smush an extension” posts did you even make? I’ll bet zero.



I could not agree more. I love moto gp. The Doctor is the greatest -- and he will be on a mission next year -- I can't wait!

A fights a fight...people talk about how for millions of dollars you should be professional and I agree to an extent.. but money cant make you walk on water or make you a robot...these are competitive guys in competitive situations...fights and brawls are going to be part of the game at times... they just are...Of course the people that market the game dont like it but its real and it happens.

Afterwards everyone starts talking about how its sad for the league and how anyone who loves the game must find it sickening etc...give me a break...its sport...theres agression and fatigue and ego and pride,hard fouls...the list goes on...Ive played in social basketball leagues with fights...and no they are not necessarily unreasonable thugs doing the fighting...youd be surprised.

As far as these things escalating? well these guys are going to battle see one of your boys get popped you are going to be infuriated.Its a team team team bashed into these guys heads then you stand around and dont stick up for a just doesn't work that way.

People watch sport because they want something real.Many fans are either outright entertained by fights or at least appreciate it as part of the game on occasion.The fans that find it 'tragic and sickening' are probably the same fans spending the money on merchandising families etc but if you cant accept the odd brawl you should go to the ballet.

I have a problem with millionaire basketball players jumping into the stands and bashing fans,I have a problem with fans going on the court,provoking, and consequently getting bashed by players...I do not have a problem with a fight on the floor between the players on the odd occasion... how can you realistically expect this not to happen at all?

George Karl was asking for it leaving his starters out there...its disrespectful sure but hey its a basketball game..who are the knicks to say they nuggets shouldnt spank them if they want to...its their perogative...if you are the knicks and you dont wanna get spanked PLAY BETTER...having said that if you go breaking the NBA 'ettiquete'and leave your best guys out there expect a hard foul I guess...situation was ripe for a problem which probably means all the coaches get quiet memos from david stern this week informing them that they will be fined if the starters are still in the game the last 2 minutes of a game over twenty points...

Oh and Carmelo Anthony... you will forever be remembered as a pansey to anyone who likes tough guys and a rascal to anyone who likes nice guys...way to reduce your target market man...

Hey I'm not saying their not stupid...Im just saying that no matter what the fines and suspensions are this stuff is going to happen now and then.So fine them suspend them it will still happen on this scale once every second season or so.


hey, dont you just wonder, what if KENYON MARTIN were on the court at that time? he would have brought a gun and start shooting at the players.

the wiz are like the bucks, the pistons, the hornets on the road........ they can kill us.
its fishy oddsmaker are only giving the wizards a +4... they gave houston +8, considering lakers have only lost 3x at home and wizs are 2-8 on the road.

The Zeitgeist Checklist.

Let's cut the nonsense and talk with some candor.

1. 100% of the people advocating a Farmar start over Smush are lacking any type of basketball wisdom. Smush went to war with the Lakers all of last year and felt the heartache of the game 7 loss @ PHX. Farmar may act as though he's under control all the time and put on a smooth face, but Smush is quicker, more aggresive, more assertive, better suited to guard opposing guards, and again, most imporantly, a tested Laker warrior. I know Farmar is caucasian and charming, but come on, let's give it a break.

2. The brawl at the Garden was the most entertaining Knickerbocker game I've seen in 4 seasons. I say you schedule a rematch for tomorrow and let them ride.

3. Carmelo was being positioned as a posterchild for Stern's "new NBA". Yesterday's brawl was a successfull coup det' tat by Dwight Howard. No more phantom calls for Car-mellow. No more 12-16 free throws on bad shooting nights. No more 'get out of jail free' cards when caught sneaking marijuana on to road trips. Game. Set. Match.

4. George Karl's ambition to make Carmelo scoring leader this year goes up in flames as he watches old-school Isiah teach him a valuable lesson about embarrassing opposing teams.

5. Phil Jackson just gets better with time. Someone check his DNA. The guy is from another realm.

6. Tex Winter acklowledges these Lakers are locks for the championship this year. It's about time.

7. Mark Stein, leading pundit for ESPN, continues to grow in popularity despite an absolute lack of basketball wisdom. Puts a Phil Jackson / Jerry Buss ball club with the best player in the world behind New Orleans and a few other unmidgitated disasters. Informed basketball fans blackball ESPN and take their respective hits to Yahoo! Sports.

8. Lebron James unable to battle new rule changes. Which rule in particular? The one where phantom superstar referee calls are banished for the early part of the season. Cavs fading fast. Informed basketball fans wait patiently for successive 25 free throw games for "the king".

Tony Rambis:

"I know Farmar is caucasian and charming, but come on, let's give it a break."

Nice cheap shot. I guess you are trying to imply that supporting Farmar over Parker is racist. Not only incorrect but definitely out of line. Farmar's father is African-American and his mother is Jewish. Get your facts right before you open your effing mouth. And leave race out of it, please.



I say that AI will be wearing a Nugget uniform by the end of the week. If Denver had any real interest in aquiring him before, they need his immediate assistance right now. Plus Kenyon Martin was born to play in Philly. It makes sense both ways, Philly would embrace Martins thug-hustle and Denver's situation, as weird as this may sound, could very well be the best situation that could ever be scripted. Denver is in serious need of a consistant PG. AI will only be effective if he has full run of the team. I say that Carmelo gets 40 games. Enough time for AI to get comfortable.

Anyways, just thinking out loud.


Tony Rambis,

I thought your post above was great, save item one where you question the basketball IQ of at least 60-75% of people on here, including both K brothers, all of which I'm sure have one time or another questioned wether or not Farmar should start, because it is THAT CLOSE between him and Smush. Then you went ahead and insinuated it was because Farmar is not 100% African-American that he was so favored. That was a loser move. Like I said, save that it was a funny and entertaining post, almost Simmons-esque. Keep your racism to yourself and you might have something.

Tony Rambis:

“100% of the people advocating a Farmar start over Smush are lacking any type of basketball wisdom.””

----There are valid reasons for people with basketball wisdom to favor starting Parker or Farmar. I have never accused the Smushkateers of being basketball dummies. By the way, where were you before Smush had his great game against the Rockets. And I don’t remember any strong supporting posts from you after the Suns’ series. Or any series for that matter.

“Smush went to war with the Lakers all of last year and felt the heartache of the game 7 loss @ PHX.”

----You might rephrase that the to state: “Smush went to war with the Lakers all of last year but was one of the major reasons for the Lakers blowing the series.” You might also like to know that Smush’s play and obvious meltdown during that series is partially why so many favor starting Farmar.

Smush had a great second half against the Rockets. If he played that way all of the time or even most of the time, there wouldn’t be a Start Farmar bandwagon. Even the true Smushkateers realize that.

You’re the one lacking any “basketball wisdom.”


Tony Rambis

Just because someone doesn't agree with you doesn't mean they lack basketball wisdom. I don't agree with Korey and Mike T most of the time but I think they both have pretty high basket ball wisdom,the same can be said for lakertom.

Most of the time on this blog you pick a side and get ready for battle, knowing that you can never really win an argument because both sides are well stocked with knowledge.

That being said, it was great to see a fight in the NBA again. I know it's sad to say but a punch or two makes the next match-up even better. Why do we hate the SUNS so much? Because bell and nash had to go start some ish. Same reason we hate the queens so much lol. Now if D-wade ever took a swing at kobe, that Heat-Laker x-mas day game would really be something.

Where TJ Simmering these days!!!


Do you know if LA Times has banned TJ Simmers from reporting on the Lakers after his 'Kobe Tank' stories or are the Lakers as an organisation boycotting him!!

Carmelo (aka ‘Caramel’ ) is now under investigation by NYPD because he was involved in a major incident on national TV. If you have any further information about the 'Hit & Run' please contact the local authorities.

Peace & Love


GO KWAME I hope he KILLS his old team & dunks on everybody and we come out with the "w"



Tony Rambis,

I agree with almost everyone here on the blog, there is no racism involved in the Farmar debate, at least not in my opinion. Farmar is a nice little player and he was the best player available in the draft at the time the Lakers drafted. He may even eventually turn out to be a very good player, however, that remains to be seen. Please, let's not dirty the debate with allegations of racism when there is absolutely nothing to even remotely substantiate that charge.

My apologies gentlemen.

I didn't mean to insult or impugn anyone's integrity by my above comments.

The "caucasian" comment was a verbal jab at Farmar advocates, which in hindsight, was of bad taste.

However, with any bad now feelings out of the way, I'd still like to express my displeasure at people who claim Jordan should start over Smush.

Yes, Smush's play in the PHX series was under-par for a starter in any Phil Jackson lineup. But one must understand the logistics of basketball success when measuring the Laker's pointguard situation today.

"In order to succeed, [one] must first learn how to fail."

Smush's whole career has been one long trial and tribulation. This is the season he will establish himself as a legitimate, top 10 pointguard in the league. The recent Rockets game was his push over the last standing hurdle. Physically, his ability to pressure opposing guards and force steals in unrivalled, in my estimation, by any other point-man in the league. Last year, particularly in the PHX series, Smush was over extending himself on the defensive end and was consequently unable to perform consistently on the offensive end. However, this year you can see the marked improvement. Smush no longer stagnates on offense or let's fatigue dictate his play. As he showed in the Houston game, when the heat is on, and it's do or die, his instictual ability to take a big shot has increasted dramatically and his performance(s) in crunch time are on par with that assessment.

Farmar simply does not show an adeptness at guarding pressuring opposing point guards and forcing turnovers. In fact, many times, when farmar is in the game, there is a aura of liability that comes along with his injection into the game. Back-to-the-basket guards like Cassell have shown to be able to score off a mid-post isolation on Farmar with ease. Faster, quicker guards like Nash and Paul have shown that he does not present a formidable enough challenge for them to change their style of play. On offense, Jordan's insistence on showing the coaching staff that he will not defer to Kobe can sometimes become poisonous. On many occasions, if you look with a non-partial mind, you will find Farmar fails to get the ball to Kobe in the right spots at the right time. He also has an inability to make crisp interior passes, and his size and talent level do not make him a sizeable threat on the back-door cut.

Look, I don't even know why I'm discussing this. You guys are entitled to your opinions. I just posted because I felt some of the people on this board had agenda's which they were pushing at Smush, and ultimately, the Laker's expense.

Enjoy the game.

Smush, Brown & Bynum are ready for double digits. And Kobe, well.. Kobe will.. well.. you know what I mean.

- T. Rambis
Director of Operations
The International Committee for Bastketball Brilliance (ICBB)

LakerTom i am with u on the point guard issue, only an idiot could watch these two players play and say Smush is so much better than Farmar. Farmar shows poise beyond his years on the court, and does not take as many chances on defense. Every game i watch Smush go under screens and leave the defense exposed by going for the steal i scream !!! I seem to remember Derek Fisher doing the same thing against SAC in the playoffs and Mike Bibby burning us over and over. Hey i like Smush but he has to get it together defensively, and not hesitate when he has the open shot, STOP THINKING SMUSH JUST PLAY!!!

Farmar is white? Really? I'm being serious when I say that I had no idea he was white. I just thought he was a light-skinned brutha. Shows you what I know.

I'll venture to say that most of the blog isn't white, so even if Farmar is white, I don't know what it has to do with anything.

Kobe Bryant MVP, no question here:

- Lebron James: horrible defense, great dunks thou...
- D-Wade: nice guy, but he won a ring having Shaq and I m sure he can't win one without him (even if MDE is old and decadent). Kobe on the other hand is becoming a great leader and his team is competitive (who dears now to call him selfish!)
- "Caramelito" Anthony: After last night, really are you kidding me!
- Finnally, Nash: Great player, but three MVPS in a row seems to much to me. He's not in Bird's league. (or Magic, or MJ for the matter)

GO LAKERS (please lets get over with this game in the first half!!!!!!!)

Tony Rambis:

Director of Operations
The International Committee for Bastketball Brilliance (ICBB)

“This is the season he [Smush] will establish himself as a legitimate, top 10 point guard in the league.”

LOL. Sorry, I didn’t understand at first that you were just trying to be funny. haha.

“Top 10 point guard in the league.” LMAO. Now that was really funny. Good sense of humor, Tony.


I'm a messkin. LOL!


Tony Rambis what the hell are u talking about, you act like Farmar was the one missing wide open shots in that PXH series, {that was Farman right} yea thats who it was.


"only an idiot could watch these two players play and say Smush is so much better than Farmar"

So, What your're saying Phil Jackson is an idiot?? Now I'm not talkin lightyears, but Smush is clearly better than Farmar right now. If Smush wasn't that far ahead, why would the best coach in the NBA start him over Farmar??








lol farmar is mixed....

T Rambis,
"I know Farmar is caucasian and charming, but come on, let's give it a break.""


Tony Rambis

Your arguments suck balls.... It's not even fair for us on the start farmar bandwagon to count you as a Smushkateers. At least the smushkateers can make valid points. Everything you have said about Farmar can also be said about smush. We need for both of these player to learn how to play D, so you can't say one plays better D than the other. The things that really come into play on the smush/farmar argument are shooting, court leadership and a couple of others. The whole D thing is really a mute (moot) point.

Laker Tom,

Sorry man, I just can't get into your blind support of Farmar. You claim "Smush’s play and obvious meltdown during that series is partially why so many favor starting Farmar". Is it just me, or did the ENTIRE team not have a meltdown? Where was everyone else last year? How can you possibly say. "Smush went to war with the Lakers all of last year but was one of the major reasons for the Lakers blowing the series." What about Luke, Kwame, Rony, LO, Sasha, Green, and yes, Kobe. Where were all of them in game 5,6 & 7? Smush was matched up against the leagues 2x mvp. Nash wasn't the mvp just because he was able to beat Smush. He beats everyone and given the opportunity, Nash would absolutely abuse Farmar. How can you single out Smush and say "he" was the major reason we lost the series. That just isn't right.

You said, "I don’t know how this suddenly turned into a comparison of who was the better basketball player. I was just trying to explain to you why most posters favor Farmar over Smush. I never said that it was because Farmar was a better player."

Well, aren't you actually conceding the whole argument with that statement? Smush is a better player than Jordan is at this point in time.

You said, "In my opinion, Farmar is a already a better floor leader, ball handler, and passer who runs the offense, takes care of the ball, and plays defense better than Parker." You further state Smush, "lacks Farmar’s confidence, mental toughness, big college background, basketball IQ, and positive attitude.

Here's what I don't get, if Farmar has all that going for him above Smush, why do you agree that Smush is a better player? The only thing you give Smush credit for is he's a little "better shooter" and a "couple inches taller". Well heck, how about Cookie at point guard? He's a better shooter and a few inches taller too. :-)

Tom, if you go back to the beginning of this preseason year, when I first found this blog site, I have always defended Smush Parker. Even when some, you included, said Smush should be "cut" and Farmar and Sasha should be the point guards. Ha, where would we be now if that had happened? Some of the bloggers have stepped off that "Start Farmar Bandwagon" because they are paying attention to Smush and Farmar when each is in the game. They are seeing the real truth about what Smush brings to the table and how poorly Farmar is playing when he's on the court.

Tony Rambis:

Actually that may be the funniest post of the year:

"In order to succeed, [one] must first learn how to fail."

---I have to admit that Smush has learned how to fail. But is that the best first step to learning how to succeed?


“This is the season he will establish himself as a legitimate, top 10 point guard in the league.”

---That was pretty funny, Tony. Congratulations for being the first to make that declaration. I would hang on to your day job for now. If you would like to place a bet regarding that statement, you will have a few takers.


“His [Smush’s] ability to pressure opposing guards and force steals in unrivalled, in my estimation, by any other point-man in the league.”

---I missed his nomination to the all-defensive teams. When did that happen? How come Phil keeps pulling him for not playing defense?

“Last year, particularly in the PHX series, Smush was over extending himself on the defensive end and was consequently unable to perform consistently on the offensive end.”

---That may have happened in your fantasy league or when you were playing on your X-Box but the reality is Smush point blank quit on defense and totally lost his confidence on the offense during the Sun’s series.


“However, this year you can see the marked improvement.”

---What improvement. Part of the issue is that Smush has regressed, not improved. Even after a few good games, Smush’s stats are down from last year for minutes played, points scored, shooting pct, 3-point pct, free throw pct, rebounds, assists, and steals per game. The only stat that is up, in fact, is turnovers.


“When the heat is on, and it's do or die, his instictual (sic) ability to take a big shot has increasted (sic) dramatically and his performance(s) in crunch time are on par with that assessment.”

---Actually, a big part of Smush’s improved play has been his decision making, mostly to not try to take ill-timed shots late in the game when Kobe or another player is a better option. I will give you that he made some big shots in the Rockets game, but I could show ten other games where his poor decision making and indecisive actions costs us. Even in this game, Smush made some major errors and bad turnovers. The difference was he was able to hit a couple of shots to make up for it. Hopefully that will continue but to claim that Smush and clutch belong in the same sentence without NOT is a real stretch.


“There is a aura of liability that comes along with his [Farmar’s] injection into the game.”

If you wondered why all of the fans at Staples were always clapping and cheering when Farmar comes into the game, it wasn’t because they feel he is a liability.


“He [Farmar] also has an inability to make crisp interior passes, and his size and talent level do not make him a sizeable threat on the back-door cut.”

Wow, guess it must be fantasy league or X-Box. Even most Smushkateers would acknowledge that Farmar is a better passer than Smush. And the stats will show that Farmar has scored far more times off backdoor cuts than Parker, who usually just parks out by the 3-point line.


I could go on but you have already made your points, embarrassing as they have been. Anyway, all in fun…

“Director of Operations
The International Committee for Bastketball (sic) Brilliance (ICBB)”

---Yeah, sure.

Enjoy the game. Can’t wait until your next hilarious post. I hope Smush has another great game tonight. In fact, I hope that every Laker that plays does a great job. We need to grab every win we can with Lamar out and the Suns a full game ahead of us now in the Pacific.



Aside from the fact that Mello exposed himself as a complete P_ssy. Can you please explain how that fight compromised the sport?

When Karl Malone threw his elbows in the 90s...did that comprmise the sport? When Magic got ejected for throwing punches in the 80s...did that compromise the sport?

The only thing that is compromising this sport is a pathetic little PC commisioner who is single handedly turning basketball into ballet. Hell, telling his team to foul may be one of the better coaching moves Thomas has made.

The reason that it is a BIG DEAL is because the leugue makes it one.

Tony Rambis:

Hey, man, welcome to the blog. Nothing personal about my posts. No harm or insult meant. I just woke up on the wrong side of the bed and you were the only one posting who got in my sights.

We need the damn game to start before I really go crazy. I must be worried about the Bullets, er the Wizards.



Excuse me dude! I'm far from an idiot and I do think Smush is "currently" a far better player than Smush.

I try to never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. You would appear to be very experienced.

Jamison worries me. He doesn't scare me, but he worries me. Remember, he was on one of the few teams to beat Kobe on a 50-point+ night (the Lakers are 10-3 when Kobe rocks for 50+ points). AND, he outscored Kobe on that night (if I remember correctly). So, dude "could" get hot and negate Kobe's scoring punch.

But, since LO went down, every other player's shooting % has gone down. LO is the glue. This stretch is scary. I'm just happy it is heavy on East teams. That alone might allow us to play above .500 for this stretch.

What people have been overlooking about the last game, and his other big scoring games this year is that Kobe isn't trying to actually win them by himself, but teach his teammates how to win them.

Kobe is no longer killing the other team by himself. He looks more like he's wounding them so that his team mates can finish those teams off. Kinda like how a Lion will cripple an animal and watch as the cubs finish the kill.

That's why Kobe set Brown up for those two(!!) supposed thunder dunks at the end of the last game. Kwame, however, chose to miss a couple of cutsie chippies instead.

That is leadership.


i see short minutes from kobe today. i think phil will rest him.

if all goes to plan, well see a lot of minutes from Evans. Unless the Wiz does a good impression of the Bucks and starts killing us, then PJ wont have any choice but to use kobe.

as for the brawl, i think its just midless, and I hope the lakers doesnt go that path. Remember Indy fell from the heavens after the brawl, im guessing the same thing with the nuggets...

ha ha good one, Lakers UK!

did melo punk out or what? first, the nuggets go after the shortest dude on the court - 5'8'' nate robinson - (punk move)... then melo slapboxes a guy then scurries back to his huddle while skinny as heck jared jeffries gives chase (double punk move)

anyway, i was working Friday night and had to watch the game well later, unaware of the emotional roller coaster awaiting me. i just went through that night's live blog (cuz i love ya'll so much)...there was some hilarious stuff in there... re: jon barry's love fest with battier, GREAT stuff

btw, anybody know if that game will be re-broadcast? i accidentally erased the original version from my DVR. idiot.



I have always said that Smush is the only other guy on this team who could play point besides Farmar. We need them both this year to win. Let's leave it at that and root for them both to play better than expected. That is what we all want and can agree upon, right?



Thanks. Like stargazin, I wondered what his ethnicity was. Not that it mattered much anyways.

The first time I heard the word "messcan" was when I encountered a white-Texan cowboy for the first time in my life. Born and raised in East LA I never ran into "these" people. But we were both Marines stationed overseas and we were having a conversation about race. The guy turns to me and asks "You're a messcan, right?" I laughed my ass off and asked "What the heck is a messcan"?

I mean, how can you not laugh at THAT?

No harm no foul. He was a good kid and we were both young. He was as ignorant about "messcans" as I was about white people. HAHA!!


Its not anyone particular incident that will compromise the sport. However, it is the cumulative effect of what could happen down the line. What exactly are you arguing against? You can't have idiots like Steven Jackson and Carmelo keep doing the stupid things that they have been doing. The amount of popularity and money that this league enjoys is amazing. It has grown exponentially for more than 2 decades. Don't you think David Stern is right by trying to keep things under control? What would you do if you were the commissioner?

Kwame and freethrowing ==
Seriously, shouldn't someone put Kwame in touch with Rick Barry? If his shoulder hurts and he is not afraid of looking 'not so cool' shouldn't he try Rick's underhanded method -- much easier on the shoulder and concentration.

With all the cash on the table in the NBA I really wonder about all the 'macho' these guys seem to need. If the average nerd can shoot 80% underhanded, you would think people like Kwame and Ben Wallace could find a way to give it a chance. Not everyone has to be a 'sissy' like Shaq.




WHY NOT THE 1ST???????????








Tony Rambis,

What does his ethnicity have to do with it? Stupid.

Farmar in general sees the court better than Smush and is a more intelligent passer. Smush is more athletic and has shown a capacity for the spectacular in his play. However, Famar seems to have more potential than Smush long-term, if anything, due to the remarkably rapidity in which he was able to understand and (nearly) master the Triangle offense at 19 years of age.

I've never seen a player integrate himself as quickly into Jackson's system as I have Farmar. Period. Smush is still trying to figure it out, it seems.

That's what it's about, man. Don't be dissing on Farmar.


If we go DOWN 20 points tonight WE AIN'T GETTING BACK.

Kobe on whether he likes the new ball or the old ball: "Well, I had 81 with the old ball." :)

Thanks for the props. I apologize for not hanging out more often. But my blog is free; not even any advertising. So it's just like hanging out here. A simple link. And the K brothers are always gracious in getting it linked when and where appropriate.
Even when I don't leave a post, I'm always reading the blog. It's the pulse of the franchise, in a lot of ways.
Frankly, I think it kind of dampens things if I get on here and start to preach about something.
There's nothing quite like the Lakers blog. A fight break outs in New York, and next thing you know some dude from Italy is holding court and describing Americans as overly moral Puritans.
Try telling that to the Iraqis.

If you can find it.

Roland Lazenby
author of The Show

Tony Rambis,

That was without a doubt the harshest response to what was, I'm assuming, a first post? Ya got style, sir, but "the protruding nail gets hammered" on
the Laker blog. It's not enough that the Lakers win, it's that they win the way we say they won and why.

Bring your "basketball brilliance" back soon. You've done Smush / Farmar there's 10 other players and a whole staff to rant about. How 'bout why Kobe's not MVP? That's always a popular post.

Anybody know if the game will be on TVU? If so, what channel? The 10065 is not listed in the channels anymore. Can anyone update me? Thanks for the help.

Mardy Collins' takedown of J.R. Smith was no worse than Tinker's cowardly cheap shot on Kobe in last year's playoffs. If Tinker only got (1) game, then Collins shouldn't get worse.

The real agitators in that scenario should get zapped hard. They would be Nate Robinson, J. R. Smith and Carmelo.

It just goes to show that Kobe was correct in his actions by not responding to the PHX. cheap shot.
Sometimes it takes more courage not to react and fight back. The morgues of this country are full of real tough guys.

Hey Tom,

I always root for both of them. I root for any Laker that's on the floor, or the bench. I root against any player who isn't a Laker, unless they are playing a team who is in the race with us. I love the Lakers and I love the NBA.

I also love debating with you, and others, the value of our players, not just Smush and Jordan, but all of them. It makes me think more about what our guys are doing and your arguements give me perspective into what other people are thinking and why. I have never been one to take the high road on any issue just to avoid confrontation and I usually always speak my mind. Nothing personal is ever intended.

It's going to be interesting to watch the competition continue to develop between Smush and Jordan the rest of this year. I can't wait to see what everyone says when Smush and Jordan are standing side by side, hoisting the championship trophy over their heads, or when they're on that rally stage after the parade and Jordan tries to dance, but it comes out like Mad Dog a few years ago and everyone says it's because he's half Jewish................ HaHaHa


Always an honor to have you show your head at the door.

Thanks for stopping by, brother.



I am saying that these situations should be handled no differently than they were in the 80s or 90s. It is the League that is hurting itself. You can not take emotion out of the game; that hurts the game. Emotion is one of the reasoins people watch.

I am not suggesting that the actions that we saw are OK. What I am saying is that they are to be expected from time to time as a result of the type of game that is being played. Trying to regulate emotion and the occasional fight out is simply shortsighted and unrealistic. Rules and fines are necessary but they have gone too far.

I guess you could liken it to saying that NASCAR should impose a speed limit because we dont want people to crash.



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