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Andrew Bynum's return: Money for the Lakers AND John Sebastian

After all, it's customary that a Laker returning from a long injury gets serenaded by Sebastian's best knownDrew Nene ditty.  Dude ain't scored a hit in some time, so I imagine he appreciates a royalty check in the mail.  (Along these lines, he's lucky Andrew Barbarino didn't recover from an MCL injury and ruin his good fortune).  Bynum has clocked plenty of dollars during his time off the hardwood, but as the saying goes, money can't buy happiness.  Playing roundball sure can spark a smile, and Drew, along with his teammates and every Laker fan worldwide, were mucho toothy upon seeing the seven-footer back in the lineup.  Even better, a 116-102 win over the Denver Nuggets provided a quality showcase for what the Lakers' playoff run could look like with Bynum back in the mix. 

What began as an exercise in cobweb removal (rusty footwork, kooky timing, flat out airballs) slowly rounded into a form reminiscent of the wave Andrew was surfing before the wipe out.  Maybe not pure domination, but his presence,as noted in yesterday's postgame report, couldn't be debated.  Misses were put back and rebounds were collected, whether by the kid himself or Pau Gasol (19 in all, 11 offensive), beneficiary of the attention garnered a second Goliath.  He even found paydirt on a shot bricked initially by Kobe Bryant, and then Pau. 

Symbolism, perhaps, of a big three back in action?

Of course, there's a fourth Laker who ain't exactly chopped liver.  Lamar Odom has provided a fairly consistent punch picking up AB17's slack, but now finds himself entering a box score from off the bench.  LO says he's cool with the move, although the O.C. Register's Kevin Ding found himself wondering if the rotational realignment left a sour taste in the southpaw's mouth

Personally, I think any frustrations on display last night had more to do with a less effective second half than anything potentially perceived as "demotion."  I was there when Phil Jackson noted the likelihood of Bynum starting again, and later asked for a reaction, LO not only seemed truly "fine," but it felt to me like he endorsed this as the right call.  Lamar has been fairly candid about the bench mob's struggles since his exit, and I think he appreciates being asked to help fix it.  At the very least, I think he understands the importance of trying, and what's at stake.  Would he prefer to start?  Probably, which gives him something in common with about 99% of the L.  But unless coming off the bench means playing 15-20 minutes (which strikes me as quite unlikely), I don't picture any resentment harbored.  

Jordan Farmar, however, could be stewing over the potential of shrinking PT.  When Derek Fisher ran into some quick whistles, Phil Jackson opted for Shannon Brown over the former Bruin.  PJ said the newbie Laker's muscles made him better suited to shadow the burly Chauncey Billups.  Strength acknowledged, Brown not only shined, but outplayed Farmar for the second straight game with notable minutes.  It'll be interesting to see if Kurt Rambis, filling in for PJ, continues to give Brown a look tonight in Portland.  No doubt, point guard play off the bench hasn't been strong for a while.  As a whole, it's the Lakers' biggest weak spot.  But when it comes to a title run, is it even important?

OTHER NOTES

AK

 
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Good Morning! Thoughts to come in a bit...

Let's go to Portland and ride these fools at their own barbecue!

Paging Mamba...we need a Roll Call STAT! Can't do the Game Day Prayer without one!

I heard grumblings that Bynum will not play tonight in Portland but now that link is unavailable. Any truth to this rumor K bros?

Wow, that article on AI was harsh.

It was nice to get a better view of Shannon Brown. He seems like a pretty decent defender. He also seems good at not trying to do too much.

I'm not totally sold on him yet, but he's seeming like a better fit all the time.

You guys have got to read this article. Probably the best article I've read in a long time.

We're definitely getting the last laugh. Enjoy!

http://tinyurl.com/d6rujq

Shaww-

After the game, PJ said he figured, barring any complications of course, that Bynum would probably play about the same number of minutes tonight as he did Thursday. Haven't heard anything different since. Of course, most of the time in between I've spent sleeping...

BK

Maybe Mamba is off work today with Easter closing Wall Street and all.

Someone here, a Lakers Blog favorite, is celebrating another Birthday today.

Can you guess who it is?

Hint: If the Lakers would shut out another team, and win 100 - 0, she would still be concerned with a lack of defensive intensity.

Hint 2: Fill in the blank. "Without ________, it is impossible to please God"

Hint 3: She is credited with making Sasha, the Machine he is today.

Can you use your powers of reason to guess who is, the Birthday girl?

We have a 3 man rotation on the PG spot. Brown's size and athleticism can help with the bigger PG's in the league. I like his Karl Malone ball slap on Defense. He has done that twice when he got playing time.

Brown will keep Farmar motivated and will constantly strive to keep up or he will lose his spot.

Bynum in the mix (not even at January 2009 form), and is already killing the boards. We look very hard to beat with him in the lineup.

LO's numbers are back to his Bench Mob days. Goes to show how valuable Lamar is to this team. You can't look and his numbers and think he is slumping. Like most players, the more playing time you get, better you have to showcase yourself. Props to LO.

Does anybody know if we can trade Morrison with another Laker next season?

From what I understand we couldn't have this season due to his contract...

Sign that guy to a multi-year deal.

Posted by: "Pig" Miller | April 10, 2009 at 10:06 AM

I agree to a point. It all depends on how long we have the Triangle (Phil at the helm) in place.

But Shannon does what this team needs. Defends the point guard position well, gets run outs, and makes the next logical pass. Shooting isn't absolutely necessary, IMO, because I find that movement of the ball or the PGs movement w/o the ball is more important. its all just an avenue to forcing the defense to decide who to play and getting the ball to the open man.

I think Josh Powell is a guy I'd like to see on the bench for awhile. Not a starter, but he is a solid player. Unfazed by much, willing to get physical, and a nice pure jump shot. Reminds me of an undersized Ho. Grant.

Happy Birthday Faith!

My girlfriend thinks Sasha is great too. She finds his tendency to sprint up the floor any time he bring the ball up and the way he dribbles when doing so hilarious.

She calls him Super Mario.


This Rose Garden thing is getting annoying. There's no reason for it.

If we win without Phil, the theories will fly.

While Phil was lamenting Drew's not-yet-there defense, I noticed that the cutters coming into Bynum's paint were adjusting in a way they don't have to for Pau. So while his footwork was not perfect in his return from a 30+ game layoff, the mere fact that HIS feet were planted low, definately altered the game.

And people -- why focus on some akward Bynum shots in the first quarter, when he finished with OVER his average before the injury. Lord. It was like Phil had to grudingly admit he played good in the second half.

I get the guardedly optimistic thing, but he played well above my expectations.

Second: his return seemed to energize Kobe, who obviously felt terrible for Drew. There was a Kobe sequence late in the fourth quarter -- three baskets in a row that sealed the game for the Lakers. Each one, a thing of beauty. Through heavy traffic for one, a weird angle on a bank with Billups mauling him, and a tip-toe along the baseline and reverse layup.

Glorious day for the Lakes. If Jordan and Luke can get out of their heads, we will start winning by 30 ...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY FAITH!!!!!!

Just for you, the Lakers will break their losing streak in Portland tonight.

Enjoy your birthday and may all you wishes come tru.

Happy birthday Faith!

Happy birthday, Faith!

A win in Portland would really be a great b-day present.

Go Lake Show!

GAME ON!

HAPPY B-DAY FAITH!

LET US PRAY...

Dear Lord, we Praise You for our Lakers - and, of course, for how You allowed Andrew's gifts and talents to continue to flourish. Continue to heal his knee. Heal Kobe's fingers as well. Keep our Lakers united and bound as a unit. Give Kurt Rambis the tools, resources and vision required to guide us through 48 MINUTES OF FOCUSED AND DETERMINED LA LAKERS BASKETBALL tonight!

Grant us another victory. Break this streak, and most of all, keep us steadfast & focused as we venture into the Rose Garden once again. Remove every thorn in the garden and turn the place into our own little paradise if only for one night. We come against every attack and spiteful attempt at retaliation from the Portland Trail Blazers. Let them honor the game of basketball by playing the game with dignity and respect.

They fear us because they envy us. They speak ill of us in the sports blogs and reports because they wish to have the success that You have given us. But use tonight's game to reveal to them how CHAMPIONS conduct themselves. Thank You for keeping the Lakers humble. Thank You for allowiing our game and not our words to speak for us. The memory of Game 6 in Boston is behind us. We have grown stronger. We have grown wiser. We don't need to use the media & sports blogs to take shots at our opponents. For when we step on the court playing with the skills and talents You gave to us, it is evident that we are indeed CHAMPIONS!

Make Portland and their fans recognize that.
You humbled Denver last night. Humble Portland tonight through the beauty of our TEAMWORK!

WE STAND UNITED!
ONE TEAM!
ONE MISSION!
ONE DESTINY!
IN PURSUIT OF CHAMPIONSHIP #15!

And on this day, in which we remember the Ultimate Sacrifice You made for mankind when Your Son was crucifed to redeem us all, we thank You for that gift and for answering our prayers...AMEN!

Happy birthday, Faith! (thanks, Fatty, for the heads-up.) With Drew back in the middle,
I think the Lakers will be making your mantra of "Defense!" come true.

Happy Birthday Faith!

Happy Birthday Faith,

Mamba, before the game starts hit the bandwagon for her!

AMEN!!!!

Happy Birthday Faith!

Happy Birthday, Faith! Let's win tonight with some D!!!

With the Banner Holders Prayer.......

With Jon K's 'Lucky Bar Stool'........

And with Faith's Birthday wish of the Lakers emptying the Rose Garden of Blazers Fans early in the 4th, (except for Never and the other Lakers Faithful).......

I feel there is a STRONG possiblity of a Lakers win in Portland.

I would say 100% chance of winning, but WesJoeNixon feels that might be jinxing the team.

Fatty - Who feels it will be more than the rain coming down hard on Portland tonight.

And Never, you stay safe. You won't know what these crazies might do when they lose tonight.

UTZ Amen.

AMEN!!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FAITH!

Have a good one!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

utzworld,

Amen.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

Lakers will win tonight. They've been waiting for this game for a long time. Paybacks a b---- portland!

Happy birthday, Faith.

AK

Well I'm in Portland. I have my Laker road D. Fish jersey and I have a single ticket to tonights game. I plan on putting on my headphone and blasting my ipod and watch the Lake show get revenge in Portland. It was so good to see Andrew back in form last night. He even hit that jumper from the free throw line. We need a good show from our twin towers to play Oden/Aldridge tough and silence the loud and crazy Portland crowd. I suspect Ariza will match up well against Roy. Lets go Lakers and make it six in a row.

fatty, faith

Wow. The Iverson article was HARSH.

And I agree with it. It's nice to see a journalist take a risk and shout what the best of us already knows: The Emperor wears no clothes.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

Thanks all. I'm really touched. It's nice to have a blog fam.

That's vintage Fatty LOL. I think it's deserving a Fatty!

I'd just like to share a little a story that filled me with ebullient optimism.

I'm used to LeBroniacs out here in the soggy gray wastes of Northeast Ohio. I've learned to deal with them (no easy task of equanimity, let me tell you!)

However, as the season progressed, they become more and more emboldened.

While utilizing the powers of the lucky barstool, it has become common place for me to endure physical threats of violence, threatened future destruction of the lucky barstool, threatened future thievery of the lucky barstool, and/or multi-hour rants about how LeBron James is the Greatest player ever and I'm insane if I don't publically recognize that "truth".

It's something, alright.

Well, watching Bynum back on the court last night, though there were two threats against the lucky barstool, otherwise it seemed like the air had been taken out of the collective room.

I heard multiple exasperated statements along the lines of "What the hell are we gonna do NOW? Whoa."

One LeBroniac with whom I've become familiar with just shook his head in frustration while watching the game in the fourth quarter. The best he could come up with was, "Well, at least it will be the Cavs and the Lakers in the Finals, since we have home court advantage and all."

Right now, the NBA is having a silent, collective freakout just a little beneath the freakout when we traded for Pau Gasol.

WHEN we win tonight against Portland, that silence is going to be replaced by mania.

The flood's a'comin' and they all know it.

I can't wait.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

Faith, for my sanity's sake, please use your magical birthday powers to get the Lakers a win! And Happy Birthday!

Fatty and Fearless -

Glad you guys enjoyed the post. Even my wife had to laugh at herself after she read it.

Go Lakers! Remind Blazers fans why they have a Napoleon complex!

Good read Jon K. If you read throughtout the blogosphere those same sentiments are expressed. It's a great year to be a laker fan.

Lakers, putting the Nasty in DyNasty! Woo hoo. Go Lakers!

Absolute must win tonight. Win tonight really gets us primed for playoffs and primed for HCA.

It is unfortunate that Thaddeus Young is hurt for Philly because they really miss him and he would definitely help in the two games against the Lebrons. Also no KG on sunday for the Celts kinda stinks.

Lets get this damn monkey off our back and beat Portland tonight!

Happy b-day Faith

Jon K., that's what I'm talkin bout!

And those Lebroniacs are gonna be so surprised along with David Stern that the Cavs won't even be in the Finals!

This is our time, this is our season!

We play for 4 rings in a row!

Happy B-Day Faith!!! May you enjoy this one and many, many more to come.

Go Lakers!!!

Happy Birthday Faith.

For All you do, tonights games for you!

Machine can play cornerback in NFL. Machine intercept ball.
Machine out like trout!

Faith,
We always check to see when you slam-dunk-close the Refrigerator! Keep it On!
Happy Birthday
Baywood and Family

it wont be an easy game in portland, we seem to never win up there or play well for that matter. hopefully bynum is our lucky charm and we can come out with the W!

Ah Faith Happy Birthday.

So close to being a Taurus like myself. :)

Hey Jon K,

I'm in Cleveland right now..Are there any places that show the NBA games on satellite late or am I screwed and need to watch them online?


The Ariza foul helped the Blazers last time with extra adrenaline..They won't have that this time!

Happy Birthday, Faith!

Go LAKERS!

Happy Birthday Faith.

And many happy returns (in the form of Laker victories)

Faith

i already wish u a happy portland victory during the tuesday game. tonite i will have a glass of wine in "defense" honor during the chat.

and for a little tease, a very good offense beats defense. LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i hope u twitter tonite

Lakers can't be afraid to play physical again tonight. Blazers are sissies.

One good reason for this Portland losing streak is the fact that many of these games have been the back end of a back-to-back. Huge advantage for the home team. Especially a bunch of dork fans like Portland who has a complex about LA.

Even if we lose, those people still have to live in Oregon.

Portland is a beautiful city, and they have great little breweries up there... but Portland Trailblazer fans are raving lunatics. They treat this game like some type of rivalry exists. It doesn't. A rivalry implies a back-and-forth tug 'o' war between two teams, both winning games in the only season that counts. The Blazers haven't done that. Ever.

I hope it gets a bit chippy up there. That would be great. They're jockeying for playoff position (sorry, boys, but we've already clinched the West), and they can't afford to lose guys to a skirmish. Plus, Kobe likes chippy. It makes him sharper. And they don't want a mad, sharp Kobe.

Go Lake Show!

Jon K.

as much as i don't agree with some of your crap, i commend you for holding the Forth like a mercenary in dangerous territory.

wednesday night following some link i tumbled on the cavs blog. i could not believe all the comments and all the praises the fans were making after the philly game. obviously, the cleveland bunch did not hear yet about AB's possible return on thursday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

but please enlighten me: who r the players who's nickname are TK and especially who is boobie?!!!!!!!

also looks like there is a big delonte west club. they had some links to a blog for the fearless. never followed.

thanks

LGL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Outlaw

already that Barry commentator on ESPN, expects some kind of fight, following the last game altercation between ariza/roy & co.

i had respect for roy as a young, modest player with a great future. but after seeing his thuggish attitude after that incident i lost all the respect. and his personality and the way he speaks in interviews really sux.

zen,

Kepner's has satellite and gets Fox Sports West, but the games are fricken blacked out.

So, I'm not sure what to tell you.

On West 6th Street and across from Quickens Loan Arena (The Q) there are a bunch of sports bars. Actually most of the bars in Downtown Cleveland are sports bars. I can't guarantee you than any will have the game on satellite, but I'd imagine that more than one does. The places are filled with TV screens.

Hey, if you get the game on, please tell me of your experience with the Clevelanders and the LeBroniacs. I'd like to see if your experience mirrors my own.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

Its all in the crowd -

We never seem to match Portland's intensity.

We never seem to get a favorably called game.

If you believe PJ, the crowd has something to do with that.

They are so crazy, according to Coach, even the Refs can get into the moment, and call plays a little one-sided.

So how do you beat them?

Well, they are a young emotional team and they are playing off the crowd. The old addage, take the crowd out of it, applies.

So, how do you do that? I suppose there are a lot of ways. A good start to the game might help. Only a few TO's won't hurt. Making those open shots will help a lot. But easier said, than done.

And.....keep the 'Bonehead' plays down to a minimum. Are you listening Lamar? No 'crab steps' over the line if a fight begins. Keep you butt and head glued to the pine when a fracas starts, which I believe, we will see tonight.

Then, use the crowd to our advantage -

The Blazers and the crowd, want revenge for the so-called dirty Ariza play. Let those silly emotions they have, play right into our hands. Play hard, foul hard, and then sit back and watch the crowd go wild, moving the Blazers into doing some really dumb things.

A Robert Horry like hipcheck could do wonders with a hysterical Blazer crowd, on a rainy Portland Friday night.

And remember, we are the good guys. We don't play dirty and we don't start fights. We let our opponents do the talking, while letting our game do the talking for us.

Its the Lakers way.

Thanks again. Hope I get to close the fridge tonight. With emphasis!!

ouchhhhhhhhh,

Well, I don't agree with a lot of your crap too, but we're both Lakers fans and on the same team and I think we should both keep that in mind.

Clevelanders have a massive inferiority complex. So, of course they're going to over-hype their team and it's leader--LeCrab.

They've gotten so used to the light at the end of the tunnel being an oncoming train that they just don't know how to have a deep, confident abiding faith in their team. It always has to be tense, aggressive and near-hysterical. It kind of freaks me out sometimes.

Part of me wishes I had a deeper sympathy for them, but in all honesty it just makes me hope the Lakers crush them that much more.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

Korey,

I would encourage you to read this article.

http://bit.ly/8jYHs

Note the quote:

"The Bulls won six championships in the '90s with sawed-off shooting guards such as John Paxson and B.J. Armstrong working off of the attention paid to Jordan in Phil Jackson's triangle offense."

Shannon Brown = Sawed-off Shooting guard?

Looking at the minutes he's played in his career thus far, he's got a lot of room to grow.

ouchhhhhhhhh,

"Boobie" is Daniel Gibson.

I've never heard of "TK" before, so I don't know.

Another big name for LeCrab is "The L-Train", probably because he thunders down the lane without dribbling as everyone gets out of his way so he can layup on the right side of the basket. When I last checked trains don't dribble, do they?

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!

Shannon "So I gave you that name and I said goodbye" Brown certainly looks like a solid ballplayer.

Does anyone know why it is that he so well travelled? Is there something we should all know about him that has caused him to be on 4 teams in such a short time?

Faith,

A win for your birthday and 20 points from Sasha.

Happy Birthday, Faith.

Tom

These Trailblazers aren't the Jailblazers of old. They don't have crafty veterans. They don't have the thuggish big bodies from eras past. Well, they still have the thuggish part down pretty well, but there's nothing scary about them. They're young and cocky and inexperienced.

The refs will be calling this one CLOSE. Let's hope the Lakers have a nice, even 85% night from the line.

Go Lake Show!

Didn't Pryzbilla said that they beat the snot out of the lakers last time? That alone deserves a payback, damnit!
Let's kick some boot-tay!

Jon K, on a lighter note, you're right.

Trains dont dribble, they TRAVEL, and no wonder Queen James does that and calls his crab dribble :)


Le-Train is gonna become Late Train this year coz the Laker Train will be ahead of them :)

Happy B-Day FAith. What are you drinking?

Wes

Happy Birthday Faith!

Let's go lake show!


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