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Want to go to London? (and Live Blog news)

If you were born after '83 and are at least nominally British, the Queen mum wants you for the UK's national basketball squad!  Free Pimm's for life to all who make the team.

Also, because of a scheduling conflict, Andy and I won't be able to host a live chat tonight.  (It's Ben's day off. Let's give the kid a shot to graduate, you know?)  We'll keep this thread open for in-game comments and will update as much as possible. 

Chat box to return Tuesday. 

BK

 
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Man, what's up with every one ripping on Farmar? He is as good a back-up point guard as there is in the Association. According to other bloggers - we are going through the motions, we play poorly, Farmar is garbage, Fisher is useless (tell that to the Hornets) - whatever. All that and another win on the road, on a Sunday night in God forsaken Minnesota, against a team that would inspire uninspiredness in any team. That's 46-10 to all you haters.

Amazing....

All the hate for a team which has the best record in the league. I would like to see all of you go through the schedule these players have so far, especially the players that played though the summer, after a long season last year!

THe biggest problem right now is that the second unit played so sux, sux hell.

That is why the first unit are all so tired because they have to patch the second unit's hole.

It is pretty obvious that Paul and Kobe look tired right now, I think Kobe may look more tired than Paul because whenever he is court now, he has to be on 100% attack mode.

Dave M,

Of all the martial arts black belter, Mbenga moves like the new version of the incredible hulk with two left legs. He's slower slower than Luke even if I fast forward the recording to 2x. lol! Normally, the stance of a karate expert is balanced on a horse straddle position, in the case of Mbenga it's a hunch back stance carrying a heavy tonnage in his back. huh!!

Pau is complaining at Kobe "Caramba otra kuarenta minutos seguidamente, muy cansado." Reaction from Mihm and Vlad - hahahahaha!

Wow. Gotta say. A little disappointed in the blog. Have you no faith? And who is this Dara?

Edwin G.,
To your concerns that I'm a little too abrasive in my blog comments...

Well, what can I say...To me, basketball is something I'm passionate about. I'm not going to tone that down.

And, barber shop / water cooler talk is what really makes basketball BASKETBALL from a fan's perspective.

The inspired debates, the passion, the stubborn-ness of opinion, but the willingness to listen to logic.

When I start dissing people personally, calling them dumb, etc. etc., then I'll consider your point. BUT, people who know me outside the blog and in the blog, know that if you have a basketball opinion and can logically talk about, then no matter what your method of doing it I'll listen...

I dont want soccer-mom, CapriSun, Sliced-Oranges Talk with my sports-debates, I want spirit, passion, and strong opinions! That's what you'll get from me at least!

I apologize if I do rub you the wrong way though... would you rather have,

Greetings Lakeshow Fans,

I'm sure most of us are pretty disappointed with their lackluster win vs Minnesota...Lack of D might be the word to say the least. Strangely, our Lakers might be the ONLY team in the league that has WON the most ugly close games consistently. Think about it?

Look folks, our Lakers ALWAYS get every team's best shot simply because of their rich basketball history! Heck, even Boston doesn't get that treatment despite the fact that they are the reigning champs and a tradition themselves...That's the price for being very GOOD for many YEARS from decade to decade!

As most of you have indicated, our benchplay is somewhat SUSPECT lately....

I strongly feel that Farmar has not totally healed from his knee injury just yet as well as Vujacic from his season long sore/sprained ankles. As a result, their shots are just not there as they have no balance and lift in their legs. Their low numbers this year thus far prove it.

I even suspect that Ariza's hairline fractured foot from last year might be bothering him somewhat...trust me, foot injuries ALWAYS linger...Both knee and foot injuries just simply ROB you of your movement, speed, and even energy at times depending on the type of player you are bodywise. Some players heal quicker than others

Because of our benchmob's slump all around for most of the year (the exception being Powell), the Lakers are losing HUGE leads...UNDERSTANDABLE based on the current situation.

As a suggestion, the Lakers might want to pick up Horry for the long haul to help them manage Gasol's LONG minutes (Despite his age, he knows Phil's system. Does PJ Brown ring a bell for Boston last year?). The Lakers might even want to play S. Brown more for defensive purposes against scorers and even PG's to conserve Kobe's energy. If not, Ariza will probably do the honors...

Like I've said all year long, Kobe and Fish's minutes have to be kept low for the upcoming playoff run (the time when they usually do the most DAMAGE). Like the true warriors they are, they do what's NECESSARY to help the team WIN! Sometimes, it's all about PACING...at their MILEAGE and AGE.

Getting back to the benchmob, these guys are still YOUNG and have yet to develop the tenacity that Kobe and Fish play with each and every game being injured THEMSELVES. As they gain more experience in dealing with pain and managing it, they will eventually understand that part of the game that is just grueling, unforgiving, and demanding. I'm glad that LO is staring to FIGURE things out in that regard...

In reference to WINNING games in STYLE, our Lakers may not be blowing out teams consistently just as Cleveland, Boston, and Orlando have during the regular season thus far. However, winning a championship is not a FASHION blowout show through 82 games! Besides, our Lakers have thumped quite a few this year...Should be no concern at all.

After all, blowouts are not going to happen too often come playoff time. PERIOD! It takes ADVERSITY to make a team STRONG! It's a time when DOUBTERS come out to play FOOLISHLY with wishy-washy comments...Well, I don't hear much of that anymore...Hmmm...

This is what our Lakers are ALL about this year: WINNING games in different ways whether good, bad, or ugly as a TEAM. WINNING KNOWS NO LOSSES!

Besides, I think winning close games against any opponent (just because a team may be under .500 doesn't exclude them from still being a PROFESSIONAL team capable of winning) may be a GOOD thing in the long run. It gets the Lakers ready MENTALLY, EMOTIONALLY, and PHYSICALLY.

Those characteristics were somewhat lost last year in the Finals. This time, however, I like their ATTITUDE and WILL to win ANYTIME, ANYPLACE, ANYWHERE...

In about a week or two, I expect the benchmob to play better as more road games loom in the horizon, I expect a key addition to the team (Horry or a veteran PG), and I expect the Lakers to continue to WIN no matter what the score.

Next up...the Thunder. Go get em fellas!

Laker pride through ALL and ANY ADVERSITY!

Edwin,
I have to agree with you on that and marvel at the consequences:

1) the best record in the NBA
2) the reputation for not being dominant or dominating
3) statistical mediocrity.

Point 3 explains Hollinger's persistent ranking of the Lakers number 3 behind the two teams they swept, winning their games on the opponents' home court undermanned (with Drew gone)!

The Lakers have become adept at giving their fans a scare but coming up with the "happy ending". What does that mean? I have a few suggestions, apart from the sign that others take of their being a fragile leader that won't stand up to the heat of the Finals:

1) Phil likes it that way because it means testing their mettle in crunch time. That might explain why he consistently keeps the starters out for longer than most people think viable in the fourth quarter. Garbage time does little to build a team.

2) The point everyone seems to agree on: that the Lakers have trouble staying in focus against mediocre opponents.

3) The players themselves seem to prefer being put in challenging situations where they have to come up with solutions instead of just coasting to the finish line. The fact that they actually do so almost all the time is encouraging.

4) Tight defense uses up a lot of energy, which can take away from the offensive game. Look at the Suns, who fell apart when they were being pushed by Porter to concentrate on defense. The Lakers are a powerful offensive team (best in the league) and need to conserve their defensive energy for the games where they really need it.

Finally, yes, the Lakers are lamentably negligent in defending the three ball and, yes, Hamblin and Cleamons' defensive philosphy may explain it, but I remember seeing Phil (in the Hornets game?) game being totally blasé about the 3 defense. His philosophy is you'll almost always beat teams that count on the trey to snatch a victory. The problem in games like the one last night is that they also let guys drive to the hoop for layups, with one incredible drive by Foye where all the Lakers were standing around watching as if it was a slam dunk contest or a game of Horse.

But lapses like that I still think are linked to a lack of a sense of urgency in games like this one. And of course though that makes for bad team statistics and forces Hollinger to demote them, the Lakers are racking them up in the one statistic that counts.

Mel said:

-Wow. Gotta say. A little disappointed in the blog. Have you no faith? And who is this Dara?

I Don´t know. And who the hell is that Paul guy he/she is talking about? she means Pau?

EG,
Last line should just be:
"I apologize if I do rub you the wrong way though... "

Is it just me or does Kobe look angry in the past few games? In the past week or so I've seen kobe snap at his own players on the floor even at Phil as he's going to the bench.

These low-school wins remind me of the same low-school wins before we went on a skid on the road (Miami and Orlando).

tsphere,
"4) Tight defense uses up a lot of energy, which can take away from the offensive game. "

That line would get you in trouble in coaching circles! As well as the so-called basketball "purists"...

I understand what you are saying,but I guess you are saying that you would rather be a dominant offensive team that sometimes play D, then be a dominant D team that sometimes play O.

Of course, most people would say that the dominant D model has worked in the past decade pretty well (Detroit, San Antonio, Boston)

That argument is typically that D is something that cant be light-switched on.

For one, give a NBA team confidence and all of us sudden the backup PG is hitting Kobe shots.

Bad habits manifest themselves at the wrong times. Last nite, Luke leaves MikE Miller a top NBA shooter in the corner to help on ...gulp.. Sebastian Telfair.

Defense is about trust and knowing where your help is going to come from. If anybody slacks on D, it creates mistrust amongst defenders, players start to overcompensate for others, go for steals, and basically dont stick to their role which results in mistrust late game.

If Walton leaves Miller open for 3, then next time maybe Kobe doesnt play tight D on his man, cuz he isnt sure if Walton will do his job right.

Maybe Odom sees that Farmar is getting beat 1-on-1 all game, so he decides to leave his man earlier than normal to get the shot block. Now Odom's man gets a easy layup or rebound and we blame Odom.

It's way too much "variable" and left to chance if a team decides NOT to play defense the same way consistently. You are setting yourself up for disaster.

That's why I want to buy the story of "light switch D" for certain games, but I know that to get a chip sustained defensive effort and intensity is the only way to go. The Lakers dont doesnt have to be dominant, just consistent.

Otherwise, it could be Kobe for 3 from 40 feet to win the game.... Not a bad option, but still!

Jon K.

I am with you..We fricken WON...There will be games like this, where we suck and possibly don't come out on top, but considering our defense was basically porous to nonexistent, I will take the W and look forward to the next game...

Its amazing that some cannot see that games like these are a true testament to how good a team the Lakers are, even when their playing pretty much their "F" game yet still come out VICTORIOUS!

I am glad we are not playing superb ball, then everyone would be saying we've PEAKED too soon, ala Boston when they were on their win streaks and the Cavs with their win streaks as well. We still have a ways to go b4 we get there and as long as thats the case, the team can continue to strive towards perfection and not become complacent...And again be racking up W's along the way...Hell, I aint mad at 'em!

pontificate away. it won't change the fact that the team is the entity that must work on the game. opinions here are meaningless. as a matter of fact, i'm glad the team has handled the business so far. if the blog had handled it, we'd be worse looking than Phoenix right now.

Korey,

Don't have to apologize, we're all bro and sis here having some conversation. Sometimes our passion lead us to our insistence on one course without looking at the other fella's viewpoint. At the end of the day, we're all Laker fans aiming for the Championship, that's what is important and what we learn from each other.

Frankly, I meant what I said that all these years I look forward to your inputs which are timely and concise, just make it kinder and tolerant with other fans or ranters.

 
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