Lakers Now

Round-the-Clock Purple and Gold

« Previous Post | Lakers Now Home | Next Post »

If I might just rant here for a moment... and other Lakers/NBA news

SoapBox A well run pick and roll is a great thing to watch, impossible to defend completely given the right personnel. That doesn't mean I want to see it all the time. But as Jonathan Abrams of the New York Times confirms and quantifies here, increasingly in today's NBA, it's a P and R world, the rest of us are just passengers.

The Lakers, who originated only 11% of their offensive plays last year through the set writes Abrams, are an exception. Fans and the game are better for it.

LA's offense demands players think and interpret, share the ball, display a varied skill set, and move in space. It thrives on players with basketball intellect who understand the relationship between their play and the four other guys on the floor. I appreciate the balance the triangle creates between a strong coaching hand necessary to implement, teach, and perfect the system with the trust given to players to do it properly once games start, and how it defines roles without mandating exactly how they be filled on every trip down the floor. (No question some of this is a byproduct of Phil Jackson's coaching style, but the style is also a reflection of the system.) Done right, the Lakers' offense is elevated stuff in a lowest common denominator world, a throwback to days when the sports world (the whole world, really) wasn't wasn't continuously dissected in a way too often requiring players and coaches to take the path of least resistance.

Given the number of Lakers I (and most of you) watch, that their games don't look the same as every other team in the league is particularly appealing. Expect the Lakers to do it well, but celebrate that they do it differently. Appreciate that the Lakers can run great pick and rolls with most of their roster (particularly Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol), but don't need it to generate looks. Get excited by the understanding that even on days when the Lakers don't look good, they'll almost always still produce a handful of exceptional plays on the offensive end.

(I now step off the soap box... click below for more Lakers and NBA news.)

Lakers News:

-Like Patrick Ewing and his NBA brethren, Jerry Buss makes a lot of money, but he spends a lot, too (specifically on guys like Patrick Ewing and his NBA brethren).

-Lamar Odom, like virtually every other player in the league, loves to start, but values his sixth man role with the Lakers, particularly if it means they keep winning. His presence should help stabilize the bench unit.

-Charles Barkley sees this team winning multiple titles.

-It's not just Pau Gasol who has the acting bug. Shannon Brown and Ron Artest appear in a new Toni Braxton video.

NBA News:

-The Clippers broadcast team was suspended one game for insensitive remarks.

-The future of Mike Dunleavy is a serious source of speculation at this point. How quickly guys like Eric Gordon and Blake Griffin can get back on the floor- and how effective they are as a team once they do- could be the determining factor. 

-Lawrence Frank is dealing with massive injury issues in New Jersey, which is clouding their coaching situation.

-Issues for the Kings mean the end for the WNBA's Monarchs.


Comments () | Archives (63)

The comments to this entry are closed.


1. It will have to be an act of God (injury)
2. If Ron Ron gets into trouble (Goddess Kali)

We need all the pieces top to bottom intact.. and rest leave it to Sorcerer Phil Zen to take us to the promise land..

I say touch that TV and heeeeeeeeeeeeeel!!

Wow. Both Shannon and Artest had featured roles in the narrative of that video. I mean, it wasn't them playing basketball like you usually see, but rather Ron stealing the girl Shannon is hot for. Ron is a devil! And Shannon's acting looked pretty good, though he didn't talk. He was convincing as the guy who just caught Ron undressing some hot chick from him. Very nice. The song wasn't too bad either.


Toni Braxton

she is trouble. remember like 10 years ago when she was "dating" Kidd/Jackson in Dallas? all went down the drain

shannon and ron. :-)

the Lakers r becoming the new tabloid: sharapova, rihanna, toni, khloe, jeannie

kobe is a walking tabloid by himself

where is Sun Yue when we need him: his girlfriend was a model

but nobody wants Jordie: his ears r too big!!!!!!

soon, one of the cameras will be fixed all the time on the Lakers guest box. jerry buss can get rid of the Lakers girls and just enlarge the guest box.

and the zen "chaperone"master has to keep them all in check. at least he has to do some work for his 12 mil.

this is very funny, from the comments of the video

who the "blip" is shannon brown? its brooke hogan toni even said it was on the wendy williams show

whataboutm (1 hour ago) 0 Reply | Spam
Shannon Brown is the man playing the cheating boyfriend. He plays for l.a. Lakers and is Chris Brown's Cousin .. but Shannon looks way better in my book !
angelatomate324 (34 minutes ago) 0 Reply | Spam
LOL shannon brown is a Guy


rumors: all of the sudden, shannon is chris brown's cousin. LOL

Here's some quotes from the you tube opinion section about Shannon and Ron's performance in the Braxton video:

Fokust (15 hours ago) Shannon Brown and Ron Artest from the LA Lakers are the love interests in the video. Guess Toni likes a'real!

metalhead684 (13 minutes ago) that looked like Ron Artest

cheetah1 (1 hour ago) who the *&%$ is shannon brown? its brooke hogan toni even said it was on the wendy williams show

whataboutm (1 hour ago) Shannon Brown is the man playing the cheating boyfriend. He plays for l.a. Lakers and is Chris Brown's Cousin .. but Shannon looks way better in my book !

explodenpose (1 hour ago) OMG! Shannon Brown is a hottie!.. but I don't like his role in this video.

dibiboi (2 hours ago) LOL RON ARTEST

brwabrown (13 hours ago) Yea been waiting for my girl to come back..nice one Toni and you get points for havin by Laker Boys in the video!!!!!

dixon2 (16 hours ago) LOL. I wasn't expecting to see Ron Artest.

That's some funny stuff.


they should play the video at the staples during halftime or timeouts

The one frustrating note I have about the way the Lakers run the Triangle is that most of the sets end up with the ballhandler having to beat the guy guarding them. Very little is done to actually free players up, especially when you compare it to other offenses that are constantly putting the defense in recover mode.

If you don't have the horses (Kobe, Pau, Drew, Artest, LO) to create mismatches, the Triangle is basically worthless. Those guys are the ones making it easier for their teammates by breaking down the guy guarding them or commanding double-teams - not the offense itself.

If we keep on winning sooner or later the league will adjust from the pick and roll to something like the triangle...or rather something that can compete with the triangle.

But as it is, it's a working system that doesn't require as much thought or cohesiveness from the players (you can put in any player from anywhere and run the system successfully) that's why it's prevalent in the league.

Sorry, but those clippers play by play guys deserved what they got. Whether or not we are 'too thin skinned' has nothing to do with it. Talking about stuff is what they do for a living, and just from that exchange, they suck at it. If they work for the clippers or the television station, how they do their jobs is not just a reflection on them but of the people who pay them. If you embarrass the people who pay you by being an idiot, they have the right to use whatever avenues that are available and legal to them as employers to correct you. It has nothing to do with free speech or the disintegration of everything we hold dear, it’s a performance evaluation.


Bynum and Ariza were healthy for the 2008 eight playoffs, the Lakers would have back-to-back championships.

Couldn't agree more about the pick-and-roll, although I must note that more than ever, the screener is allowed to move ALL over the place to set their picks.

Whatever happened to the illegal offense call? Moving screens occur, to my eyes, on 90% or more of P & R situations in the NBA.

While I must laud officials, when it comes to the charge / blocking call, not only for coming down very strongly - this season - on the part of the player driving to the hoop, but also for the many non-calls in this instance, in favor of no one, I must say watching them swallow their whistles on what is the ugliest, most obvious, lazy offensive display WITHOUT moving screens, now exacerbated even more by the ability of everyone simply to tackle defenders, has severely taken away from the pleasure of watching the game.

The Triangle works because the Lakers' starters have the skills and basketball IQ to create mismatches. Artest is getting used to it, but I've noticed he's a good passer. And Bynum needs to kick the ball out more when opponents collapse on him. But they'll learn. The problem with the rest of the league is that most simply don't have starters with enough skill or IQ--just ask the Knicks player who shot at the wrong basket.

Though I wouldn't mind a little more P&R with Farmar/Brown and LO/Pau on the floor

And yeah, I agree that even the Lakers don't always seem to max its benefits. Kobe making some ridiculous shot over 2-3 defenders may be a newsreel highlight, but it also means the Triangle didn't work.


It was a couple of fellow bloggers (Thomas and Rick) that were first to bring attention to the NY Times article about the pick and roll. Then, I gave my own personal analysis of the Lakers' and the Jazz's lack of use of the P&R and why.

It is nice to see that you agree with the three of us almost point for point. Maybe great minds do think alike?

Also, Faith, we seem to agree that the thing about the Pick and Roll is that you can put any dufus from the street into that offense and it will work correctly. With the lack of college play nowadays, this is actually something that franchises must think about. Namely, teams are forced to either dumb down their existing offenses, or go to something idiot proof.

Enter the Pick and Roll to the rescue!

The triangle is a thinking man's offense. That is why I like. It is also why I don't like watching other teams play much. It's the same thing play after play after play.

The Suns are fun to watch in the open court. But, in the half-court, more P&R.

Utah is fun to watch, but TV doesn't do them justice because you don't get to see all their back-cuts 'till its too late, But, you gotta out think them to stay ahead of them.

If not for the Lakers, I'd probably not be an NBA fan.


"The one frustrating note I have about the way the Lakers run the Triangle is that most of the sets end up with the ballhandler having to beat the guy guarding them. Very little is done to actually free players up, especially when you compare it to other offenses that are constantly putting the defense in recover mode."


Only about 50-60 plays are a Triangle offense set plays. The rest are composed of pick and rolls with Kobe and Pau or Isolation plays. You can't simply run the triangle all the time. You have to know when is the right time to run a team offense and when to ride a player who you feel can devastate the other team offensively.

And that's why Phil Jackson has 10 rings.

Also, I know this is waaaaay off topic, but how does Vinny del Negro get a head coaching gig and Kareem gets no love? Kareem is supposed to do High School, then College, then assistant, then color commentator, then maybe he'll get a look?

Vinny del Freakin' Negro?!?!


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
>>> The one frustrating note I have about the way the Lakers run the Triangle is that most of the
>>> sets end up with the ball handler having to beat the guy guarding them. Very little is done to
>>> actually free players up, especially when you compare it to other offenses that are constantly
>>> putting the defense in recover mode.
I agree 100%. It’s frustrating to see a player pass the ball and then make a lackadaisical cut through the lane without getting close to the teammate off whom he was supposed to rub the man guarding him. When run to perfection, the Triangle Offense is a equal opportunity offense that frees up players with great spacing and passing as opposed to dribbling. As John Wooden says, the fastest and most efficient way to move the ball is by passing not dribbling. That’s why Phil is unhappy offensively.
I found the stat that we ran pick-and-rolls only 11% of the time fascinating. If you separate the pick-and-roll and post up isolation plays from the Triangle, both options that can be run from within the Triangle Offense from almost anywhere on the court, as well as our transition or running offense, I wonder what percentage of the time we actually end up running the Triangle Offense. I would bet it is really less than 25% of the time, for sure far less than most bloggers would think.
Obviously, our obsession with posting up other teams to take advantage of our height and length is probably adversely affecting how well we run the core passing portion of the Triangle Offense. That is why we are seeing our easy opportunities coming from passing off dribble penetration rather than passing to cutters coming off screens. In the end, the one play that is more generic and harder to defend than even the pick-and-roll is the isolation post up of a bigger player on a smaller defender.
There is no play that causes more havoc with the defense than an isolation post up by a player like Kobe, Drew, or Pau – all of whom have great back-to-the-basket moves and demand a double team. And while most teams are lucky to have 1 player who can effectively post up his defender, the Lakers have broken the band as their Big 5 players – Kobe, Drew, Pau, Ron, and Lamar – all excel at posting up smaller players in the paint. Thus, it is likely that we will see more of the same going forward.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

"...but don't need it to generate looks."
Can someone tell me what a "look" is, in this context? I hear the LAkers' broadcast team use the word in this way sometimes, and I can't figure out what it means for the life of me. I'm new to basketball, obviously.

HAHAhHAHAHAHAHAHAhAHa lol! ron and brown are way to funny haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ron taking of his shirt lol!!! Brown needs some acting classes but i can hate on them tho their doing their thing. SEE WHAT BEING A LAKER DOES TO U. U GOTTA LOVE IT!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Great job presenting the fit and balance between Phil Jackson’s coaching style and philosophy and Tex Winter’s demanding but potent Triple Post or Triangle Offense. 10 NBA championships have pretty much validated that it is a winning combination. While other teams run pick-and-rolls and isolations because that’s all their personnel can handle, the Lakers roll out the complete symphony, running the ultimate read-and-react offense that places premiums on spacing and sharing the ball.
As a former point guard, there is no play better than the pick-and-roll in my opinion. Run perfectly, it is unstoppable. It works just as well on asphalt courts with chain nets as it does on hardwood floors with nylon nets. Every basketball aficionado has a library of greatest basketball plays they have made or great games they have won. For me, almost every one involves a pick-and-roll against bigger and better but not smarter players or teams. It’s no wonder that it is the dominating play in the NBA.
There is one play, however, that is even more generic and basic to basketball than the pick-and-roll and that is the post up. I was taught that when the game was on the line and you needed to get the best shot possible, with the highest percentage of going in, you went to the basket. Not usually, not most of the time, but always. That is how I played and coached the game whether it was for the league championship or just the family championship in the driveway. That is why I love this team.
The biggest question that jumps to my mind after reading your post is whether the Lakers will hire a coach to continue to use the Triangle or whether they will hire a coach and let him choose a system. I know you and Andy both think I am crazy but I think the Lakers need to sit down with Derek Fisher and see what kind of interest he might have in becoming the Lakers head coach down the line. Phil could conceivably coach another 2 or 3 years, which might give Fisher time to work as an assistant.
I think the entire issue of who and how to succeed Phil Jackson is the most critical decision to be made in the next 5 years. It is something that needs to planned but I don’t see any candidates on our coaching staff or realistically available that don’t make me cringe comparing them to Phil. The one person who I am totally confident could do the job, however, is Derek Fisher, the player that 30% of the NBA general managers selected as the player most likely to become a successful NBA coach.
Bottom line, regardless of whom they Lakers select to follow Phil Jackson, the team will continue to run the Triangle Offense as long as this group of players are playing. Changing horses after winning makes absolutely no sense. This means the pool of available candidates for the job will be smaller since very few coaches have any experience with the Triangle Offense. It surely raises the prospects for a Brian Shaw or Kurt Rambis – or even an inexperienced newcomer like Derek Fisher.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Did you see the transcript of the conversation that got Ralph Lawler and Michael Smith suspended? Sure, it was ignorant, but it was not even close to something that should offend someone. People are WAY too sensitive. Ridiculous.

Random questions on a Saturday night -

Does anybody know if Tim Floyd ever ran a form of the triangle when he was head coach of the Hornets? What's
Bower and Floyd running there now?

What's Rambis running over at the 1&11 T-Wolves?

Anyone notice that Vlad Rad's a starter for the Warriors now? The Lakers thought he'd be a fit in the triangle when they signed him and it obviously didn't work out... does anyone think he can recapture his career?

What's going to happen with McGrady? Will AI ever play in the NBA again? Will the Clips use last night to motivate a resurgent drive? I know, lots of questions.

dave m

* ok, my bad with the poor grammar again. I wish i could pay people by being an idiot.

Landlord 'Hey, mr phredington, your rent is due."

phred 'I like the celtics! Luke walton is the source of all evil! I like Michael Bay movies! WHOOOOOO!"

landlord 'hey, thank you, sir, and have a nice day'

also -B-Boy- I’m not funny, you just have a lousy sense of humor. : - - )




OOOOOOH, YOUUUU, you got what I neeed..

You say he's just a friend, and you say he's just a friend...





yeah, I just wanted to throw that one out there whenever there was a lull.



Lakers sth-

"If you don't have the horses (Kobe, Pau, Drew, Artest, LO) to create mismatches, the Triangle is basically worthless. Those guys are the ones making it easier for their teammates by breaking down the guy guarding them or commanding double-teams - not the offense itself."

I think that could be said for virtually any team's offense, whether they're completely P and R dependent or do something else. I think the difference is other schemes or systems probably require less talent, or at least less versatile talent, to run well. It's that versatility and fundamentals that help move the ball and create good shots and mismatches. But when players move the ball and themselves, I think a lot of good shots are created and the defense against LA loses structure.

As someone pointed out (and most fans know) the Lakers run a lot of other things beyond the triangle. (Though every time you ask coaches if the P and R is a part of the triangle, they say yes. Everything seems to fit in one way or another. Sometimes I wonder if you asked them if the single wing was part of the triangle/triple post that they'd say yes :)...) What I was really celebrating, or trying to at least, is that the Lakers, by virtue of not being a P and R dominant team, seem to stick out in the NBA landscape. They do things differently, often more elgantly. I like the trust inherent in a read-and-react system that requires five players on the floor to interact with their environment. It shows more faith in coach to player than most teams have. This, in no small part, is because PJ has the ultimate level of security, a rarity in modern sports. One reason more coaches don't try to run the triangle, or a different but less conventional system is because it's hard, takes time, and requires a commitment most coaches just can't make. If Phil came along today, he'd probably do things differently.

I'm just happy, as someone who watches as much Lakers basketball as I do, that I get to see a team with incredible variety on that end of the floor. I love Chris Paul- anyone who reads this blog knows that- but 82 games of six billion P and Rs in a row would get old.

Oh, who's that? Oh he's just a friend...don't give me that...oh don't give me that...oh, you got what I need, but you say he's just a friend, oh baby youuu, got what I need, but you say he's just a friend, but you say he's just a friend...

That could have been Trevor Ariza on the CSI: Miami episode, instead of Pau Gasol.

That could have been Trevor Ariza as one of the Lakers in the Toni Braxton video.

But, oh yeah, that's right, he went to Houston, didn't he? Because he wanted more money. But, now? He's playing in Houston for the same amount of money that he would have gotten playing in L.A., and the pressure wouldn't be on him to be the go-to guy.

More proof Ariza and his agent are both idiots.

To Fonkin, "looks" basically means good views of the basket for a potentially good shot.

If I have a good look at the basket, I have a better chance to make it. If the hands of the defenders are blocking my view, are all in my face, I obviously don't have a good look at the basket.

Also, if I make a rushed shot, the announcer might say, he didn't have a good look at the basket.

I hope that makes it clear.

"...but don't need it to generate looks."
Can someone tell me what a "look" is, in this context? I hear the LAkers' broadcast team use the word in this way sometimes, and I can't figure out what it means for the life of me. I'm new to basketball, obviously.

Posted by: Fonkin | November 21, 2009 at 04:22 PM

puddle- i didn't think it was offensive for the fact that a large portion of iranians (or EYE-ranians) would summon a MLK Jr style movement of sit downs and popular uprisings, I thought that there was no reason to employ commentators who are so tone-deaf and culture blind that they can't think of something else to say about an iranian (EAR-ONIAN) (I think)player, or that they think they need to mention it at all. there has to be enough potential commentators (any volunteers?) around who can think of something more intelligent to say. Just a complete (*)^ you, I don't think my audience deserves intelligent thought commentary.

BTW- GO DUCKS! One more game (or some byzantine combination of wins and losses by other PAC 10 teams) to go for the rose bowl.

EAR AWNIAN? I'm not sure about my pronounciation approximations. let me go google a few things, and I'll get back to you. See? it's not hard, even if I might have just destroyed my own point, hey, phred should also be fired if he is a clippers commentator...on the other hand, that's a small price to pay to avoid the life that becomes a slow spiral of alcoholism and suicidal tendencies that awaits all of those who too closely follow the clippers.


right. see? quite simple. also possibly those guys really were trying to get fired, in which case they probably should have just given about 20 years of above average service instead of being hopelessly incompetent, as Elgin Baylor also got fired, but Mike Dunleavy is still around. The Clippers, the Bizarro NBA.

I hear what all of you are saying about the triangle. I'm just giving a reaction based on what I see transpire on the court. I don't see the offense freeing players up. I see the passes, the rotations and cuts but at the end of it all what I see most often is the ballhandler taking his defender one on one to try and score. And with other offenses, I see the systems putting more pressure on the D to recover.

I don't think I saw a link to this in the last couple of days when everyone has been going back over the brawl at the Palace and Artest's role in that. Mark Montieth at sports illustrated wrote this piece -

After reading it I decided to go back to the full video and found this report by ESPN -

After reading the story and watching the video I am of the opinion that Artest has gotten a raw deal from the media who have labeled him as "crazy." Don't get me wrong, Artest was wrong to go into the stands.

But based on the video I don't get the impression that Artest went into the stands intending to start a fight. It looks more like a guy that is worked up over everything going on (none of which he started) reacting to a situation in a way that is wrong, but not crazy.

Honestly, if you set aside the crazy theory he looks a lot like a guy trying to collar the perp that threw the beer. He grabbed the wrong guy but once he had him he didn't start wailing on him or anything. The only thing he did was hold the guy. The first punch of the night was thrown by the guy that DID throw the beer, when he came up behind Artest and sucker punched him.

At that point it was a free for all and I personally don't have much of a problem with Artest's actions after that. He punched the guy that had sucker punched him, but again he DIDN'T punch the guy he thought had thrown the beer even though he had plenty of chances to do so. If I was in that scrum I am quite sure that I would be punching anyone attacking me and I am emphatically not a crazy or violent person.

When Artest finally came back onto the floor he was charged by a couple of fans who were clearly acting like they wanted to fight. You see the main one in the center of the frame when Artest punches him, but the other fan (who is punched by Jermain O'neal) arrives at a run, also clearly trying to fight. So again Artest, in the middle of a riot, see's two guys charging him and punches one.

To me, this is not even close to crazy. He has already been hit by a number of fans, fighting is going on all around him and two guys charge him seemingly to attack him (I think if you look at their stance and expression, they appeared ready to fight). If you are not going to run in a situation like that what else is there?

So after all of this, in a situation where the only mistake that Artest made was going up into the stands to grab a guy that threw a beer, he gets to be lovingly referred to as crazy pills for the rest of his life (ok, he IS different ;). To somehow blame that riot on Artest is way over the top, if not actively vindictive, on the part of the media.

Even now, when he is complaining about the millions of dollars he lost due to his suspension, the media somehow think he doesn't get it. I mean seriously. He lost 5 million bucks. Even a millionaire NBA player is going to notice that kind of money. Who fined the owners of the Palace for the shoddy security that was the actual cause of the whole mess?

Yet the media continues to blame the situation on Artest and portray him as crazy. You can see this in the recent story by Broderick Turner, writing about what happened after the beer was thrown -

"That's when things -- and Artest -- went crazy. Artest bolted into the stands and exchanged punches with fans, a scene that was played out on national television."

That leaves the impression that Artest went into the stands swinging. And that he was himself "crazy" when he did so. That is an example of the media, either through ignorance or maliciousness using language to portray an incident in a way that I think is not supported by the video.

The video clearly shows him going into the stands and grabbing the guy he thought was throwing the beer. The guy who actually threw the beer grabbed him and eventually sucker punched him. At that point Artest began "exchanging punches with fans" and at no point does it appear, to me at least, that he went crazy.

As far as I am concerned the NBA made him a scapegoat for the breakdown of their shoddy security. The first media reports by ESPN and others, who had already dissected the video, are pretty fair on placing blame on the initial outburst by Wallace, and the continuing escalation of the situation by the fans.

ESPN is pretty clear that you should watch the video before you blame the players. But once the NBA put the onus squarely on Artest by giving him the worst penalty that narrative disappears from the media and instead we are left with that crazy guy Artest. I guess since he is "different" it is easier to dismiss him by blaming everything on him rather then telling a more complicated story about what really happened.


lakers_sth: I couldn't agree with you more.

When most other teams game plan for the Lakers (or for any other opponent), they look to attack the their weaknesses on defense, ie take advantage of a mismatch.

For teams playing the Lakers, this usually means attacking the Lakers' PG (Fisher or Farmar). Since it's so easy to beat them one-on-one (no pick & roll needed for quick opposing point guards), the Lakers must compensate, sending a double team, which creates other weaknesses on the floor, opening up free shots unless the Lakers recover perfectly.

The Lakers' offensive pattern is totally different. Rather than take advantage of mismatches at virtually every position on the court (resulting from their tremendous talent advantage over virtually every other opponent), they run a vanilla offense that was designed for white college basketball players with average athleticism but above average shooting skills.

As you note, they don't run the triangle seriously, and most possessions turn on one player creating or taking advantage of a mismatch that has nothing to do with the offense. Imagine if the offense was designed to take advantage of these mismatches from the get-go!

Contrast the Showtime Lakers: They attacked other teams first with the fast break, then with the post games of Abdul-Jabbar and Worthy. Everything they did was designed to take advantage of their talent mismatches and break down the other team's defense, resulting in one open shot after another.

Imagine if the Lakers today had a coach who was a master of tactics: Rick Adelman, Mike D'Antoni, Chuck Daly (RIP), many others: Then we would see the incredible talent of this team open up in ways they've only scratched the surface of so far. But that's not PJ's way, so there's no chance we'll see it.

I think of PJ's job of coaching the 2003-04 team as the greatest crime in coaching history. He had at his disposal four of the greatest offensive players of that era, yet rather than take advantage of unique talents and design an offense that would make the most of their abilities and the mismatches they had against every other team, he crammed them into the triangle, turning Karl Malone into a pick-setter and Gary Payton into a poor man's Craig Hodges.

What could have been the greatest show on earth was given a muzzle and a leash. That team was just dreadful to watch, they had trouble scoring, and this more than anything was responsible for their failure to win the championship that year.

Imagine what Magic would have done/said had PJ been the coach of the 80s Lakers and tried to force them to run the triangle offense! PJ'd be gone in a week! (Yes, he won all those championships, but each time with the best player and best overall talent in the league. Being the egomaniac he is, he takes credit for those wins, but the dirty secret is that those teams all won in spite of him. He only looked good by comparison to the total losers he followed, both in Chicago and in LA. Any talented coach could have won with the talent he had, and a great coach would have shown us things that would have amazed us.)


Everyone who has an ounce of passion in their life needs to rant occasionally.

Rant away.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers FOREVER.



I re-read your rant and I applause and all about ranting--ranting is AWESOME--but, ummm... dude... yeah... well, yeah, ummm... what's your point?

The Lakers are different?

[When you wrote this were you drunk?]

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

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


I don't see the offense freeing players up. I see the passes, the rotations and cuts but at the end of it all what I see most often is the ballhandler taking his defender one on one to try and score. And with other offenses, I see the systems putting more pressure on the D to recover.

Posted by: Lakers_sth | November 21, 2009 at 10:02 PM

Um, are you talking about No. 24?
I love KB as much as anyone and if he had left the Lakers 3 years ago, I might be a fan of two NBA teams now.
But he does fit Lakers_stl's description.
And so did MJ in the Bulls triangle.

I do see that the Lakers' proficiency of the triangle come in handy when the Lakers' switch to P & Rs in the last 2 minutes as they did often in last year's playoffs. The other teams have a lot of trouble readjusting their defense when the Lakers' switch their offense. I just see the Lakers having more variety in their offense than any other NBA team which of course requires higher Bball IQ players. If the Lakers run the triangle 20% of the time, that still means they run something else 80% of the time. Rather than just being a triangle team, they have more variety and "change up" in their game, that's also why they take most of the regular season to get it together, taking longer than most other teams.

I just watched the Toni Braxton video again, and my God man, let this be a solid gold, 100% proof testament that coming to LA for less money pans out in the end. It took a guy like Artest to finally break thru the post Shaq Laker free agent glass ceiling funk that had all the vets willing to take less money going to other teams.

It's really ironic, really. Both Ron and Shannon took less money to be with LA this year, and now they're both holding Toni Braxton in Lingerie. She's in Lingerie, not them.


This is completely off topic, but why isn't anyone doing some serious investigative reporting about steroids in the NBA? It seems to me that for the past decade at least NBA players as a group are becoming increasingly ripped in a way that I just don't remember them being in the 80's and 90's.

Does anyone seriously think that roids, which are a dominant story line in baseball and so common among football players that it is just widely assumed they are roided up, are not an issue in the NBA?

I don't like to point fingers, but both Le Bron and Dwight Howard look to be incredibly ripped and massive, freak of nature athletes. Maybe they are using and maybe they aren't but I would be shocked if a large percentage of the NBA isn't using just like every other major sport.

What about Shaq suddenly becoming "fit" last season when most guys are retiring? I'd like to think there isn't a problem but the NBA has the weakest steroid testing program of all the major sports, at least according to congress -

Beyond that, the main argument against the use of steroids in the NBA is that bulk interferes with stamina and agility and can mess you up over a long NBA season. That is pure bunk.

Modern performance enhancing drugs have proven effective in virtually every sport in which humans participate. Bicycling, swimming, football, baseball, hockey, track and field, etc. They make you stronger, faster, give you more stamina and help you recover quicker, and are NOT only used to bulk up.

And yet the guys in the NBA who are sophisticated enough to know the capabilities of performance enhancing drugs and techniques (not just steroids, but EPO, HGH, and all kinds of other techniques) spout the same nonsense that it is not a problem in the NBA because guys aren't all bulked up like Canseco.

This seems to me to be classic spin and misdirection. They have massive problems on the Tour de France and not one of those waif boys is bulked up like Canseco. They have had problems in all types of sports over the years and getting bulked up is not the only indicator. Yet highly sophisticated people in the NBA keep up the spin to keep people from looking closer while having the weakest testing regimen in sports. Can you say F I S H Y?

Here is a nice little comment about Stephen Jackson and potential roid use. I would bet that similar anecdotes across the NBA could be found if anyone wanted to. I think people just don't do it because we are all fans of the sport. I personally am not even sure if a lot of this stuff should be illegal, but it seems hypocritical to give the NBA a pass when all the other sports are getting reamed.

~Thomas seems that posters here are allowed to impersonate other posters almost at will by duplicating their user names. Why?

Oops.. I made a comment about Shaq in my steroid post and I forgot to put the links to document my suspicion. It has been widely reported about what good shape he was in last year. Here is a link to the official Phoenix Suns blog describing this fact as well as his offseason workout regimen.

Here is the relevant quote -

"It has been well-reported that O’Neal has worked himself into tip-top shape during his stay in Phoenix, but few know how hard the Diesel has worked to re-modeled himself back into All-Star shape. Besides working with Head Suns Athletic Trainer Aaron Nelson and Ultimate Fighting Champion Royce Gracie on his body during last offseason, O’Neal began watching what he eats a lot more intensely."

Note the fact that Shaq primarily credits head Phoenix Suns trainer Aaron Nelson (from a staff that is renowned across the league for its effectiveness) as well as UFC Champion Royce Gracie. According to this post Shaq worked with Gracie in the offseason, which for the Sun's was sometime in May - October 2008.

Gracie was suspended from from MMA competition in California for using steroids. And not just a little. He had so much Nandrolone in his system that it was beyond the ability of the test to determine how much he had.

Here is the relevant quote -

"According to the CSAC, a normal person could potentially produce 2 ng/mL of Nandrolone, while an athlete following "rigorous physical exercise" could have a level of 6 ng/mL. Both "A" and "B" samples provided by Gracie "had a level of over 50 ng/mL and we were informed that the level itself was so elevated that it would not register on the laboratory's calibrator," said the CSAC."

Here is the link -

When did Gracie's suspension end? May 30, 2008. So Shaq's amazing offseason workout was with a guy either serving a suspension for massive steroid use or who had just finished it.

And Aaron Nelson? Named NBA Athletic Trainer of the Year for 2008-2009. Yeah, OK. For making ancient players play young again no doubt.


Happy Sunday to the Lakers Nation! (and everybody else, have a sweet lovingly day: we are well mannered and gracious, you know ;) just a bit of bummer for Oklahoma people might be in sight, but that couldn't be our fault. It might be Destiny...)
On a countryside stroll currently through some Italian quiet landscape, I had to tune in briefly to put my two cents in about the talks that have been done these past couple of days on our beloveds in Purple&Gold.

(and before I forget... thank EVERYONE here who have been so kind and sweet towards me, quoting some of my posts or just noticing my passion for the guys. It's an honour really that people so much more competent than me take their time to even read what I write. Really, it flatters me so totally. As for my English, I learnt it by myself by traveling and living. And by reading about the topics I love - music & sport - on your National sources. So basically... you ALL have been my teachers as well ;), so compliment yourselves for YOU did a good job about it in the first place)

Back on the topic.

Well, as it usually happens after a good game play by our Knights in yellow armours, I have noticed that the happy mood is maybe makin us all overlook at the fact that our shape at the moment still isn't peaking (which s good: we don't need a peek of any kind now).
I'm not saying we have to fear anybody. I just hope we keep focusing and still point out that we also don't have to play short or low against anybody, either.

1) Pau will probably suffer a bit the return today more than on his first game.
2) Bynum still a question mark ankle-y speaking (I dare you to say that is good English, now ;) LOL!)
3)The bench still somekind of blurring entity that has yet to impose itself as a resource more than a tickling puzzle (though I am happy CandyMan is happy to lead the Bench Bunch, cos I literally PRAYED for this to happen when his resigning was still questionable, and I firmly believe this is one of the strongest points in this team).
4) as Guru PJ noted (wow, I am so surprised he spoke so candidly yesterday about the state of Lakers Nation... !!) we have plenty to work defensively to aim at what we are born for, namely VICTORY.

All said and done, I'm still confident about tonight. I actually see God Kobe B. attempting once more at 40 (shhhhttt.. don't tell anybody), but I also am used to Lakers rollercoaster too much to not have a sneaking thought in the back of my mind that warns me about a potential lazy game.

We are adjusting our weapons. I'm sincerly more shocked the way Nuggets have lost it against Clippers no disrespect to our cousins...). It seems this season has yet to get serious, and lots of the biggest teams are living on day by day inputs.

Which is just natural.

I am so curious to see how things develop, and I for one would NEVER love to see P&R taking place in Lakers schemes. We are just too brained for that. Lakers style is what makes me love this team double, triple more than any other good team around. I get rewarding impressions when I see us play. It's like a step up compared to anybody else, and for the fine pleasure of winning strategy our scheme is, I happily accept to see some trouble out of it when things are - like now - waiting to be fully timed on, known, adjusted and given their full caliber right.

Patience is a resource of the strongest.

You know about Sun Tzu? No mystery Kobe and PhilJ are readers of him.

We'll be fine. No matter today. Though you know... tacos could be there again (wish you all at Staples a wonderous time :))

So.. happy Sunday once more :)
Miss Z. loves ya :)


Your old buddy Laker Kev of the Swift allusions. I would summarize your position ("I thought that there was no reason to employ commentators who are so tone-deaf and culture blind that they can't think of something else to say about an iranian (EAR-ONIAN) (I think)player"), as "the commentators' true fault was stupidity rather than (ominous caesura) racism."

I hope I'm not putting words in your mouth; assuming I'm not, I would say I have to agree with you. I think it would have been a lot funnier, not to mention a lot worthier of a suspension, for them to have mused on possible Ahmadinejad connections or potential Nidal Malik Hasanesque scenarios. They would have gotten more bang (pun completely intended) for their buck.

On a side-note, Phred, Laker blog readers not yet enlightened/evolved enough to see and appreciate the level of wisdom, reasonableness, and lucidity of our politically-correct hyper-sensitive society might wonder why just 1 email would suffice to produce a suspension for these commentators. Don't forget that that's 10% of the Clipper audience

Dripping with irony, Laker Kev


Effen lost post. Argggggg! That has to be the most frustrating thing on the planet, to not only have written a long post, but to have fastidiously and painstakingly reviewed that darn thing over and over to try and avoid the curse of the typos that has plagued me since the beginning of time. My God, can't I just lose a leg instead, or maybe get another $60,000 unpaid student loan?

Lets do it again.


Bynum and Ariza were healthy for the 2008 eight playoffs, the Lakers would have back-to-back championships.

Posted by: Tom | November 21, 2009 at 02:18 PM

So my point Tom was that I'm not sure either of these players would have made much of a difference, that we have a sure case of player development occurring here. And what I think is most pleasing is that one knock on coach Jackson has been that he sticks with vets at the expense of developing younger guys. Well, I think both Andrew and Ariza have benefited tremendously from PJ's system. And this is not to take away from each guys own work ethic, or the presence of a well-run organization itself, only to point out that a lot of young players have developed nicely under PJ's tutelage. Bynum, Ariza, Turiaf...even guys like Smush, Kwame Brown, probably Luke and maybe Farmar have found a nice niche in the NBA when one wonders if time with another team would have produced similar results.


Interesting comments from everyone on the P and R versus triangle (or multiple postup) systems. Here's my take on it.

The system a coach selects is based on the personnel he has. If he's got a quick, good ball-handling guard and a smart big man who can also hit the mid-range jumper (think Stockton-Malone, the best ever at P and R), and not much else, you're going to milk the P and R until the other team's coach is chewing 3 or 4 towels a game. Anybody besides me remember the utter frustration of watching Utah clean our clock year after year, game after hellish game of Stockton-Malone?

But if you've got multiple players who can dominate postups (Kobe, Pau, Bynum, Artest, Odom), the triangle just gives you so many more ways to beat the other team. More players get involved. The court is better balanced for rebounding and for responding to the other team's rebound and transition. Etc.

The triangle is in fact a "statement system". Its statement is simply: "we've got a lot more players that are better than yours".

The only weakness that I see right now for this Laker team's triangle is the lack of a pure 3-point shooter that can consistently drain the 3 after the ball is kicked out to the open guy on the perimeter (which is a trademark of every postup that pulls double coverage). If you look at our losses (Dallas, Denver, Houston), we were absolutely miserable on our 3-pt shooting. And this is the fatal flaw of the triangle: if you don't have the 3-pt gunner, the other team can defeat you by jamming the middle or zoning you, thus allowing the outside bricks and they scoop up all the rebounds. That's why a much smaller team like Houston outrebounded us by about 20 boards.

To guarantee that ring, we need that pure 3-pt gunner. I know about 3-pt gunning...I'm CornerJ.

I have to agree with you on Lawlor's ineptness. I wasn't sure this wasn't an excerpt of Beavis and Butthead. It isn't all that different from Santa Imus's oh so droll "ho, ho ho". Showing off one's reptile brain through a microphone in the way Lawlor did is so utterly unprofessional that a broadcaster continuing to confide a microphone to such a person should be considered as socially responsible as offering Jeffrey Dahmer a knife-sharpener.

It isn't so much offensive as embarrassing.

Good morning,

Game Day! With the Thunder giving up 108 points in their last two games, they should be very afraid coming into Staples Center, whether Bynum plays or not tonight. This is the perfect opportunity for the Lakers to actually win a game they should win.

My sports jones today will have me following the NFC East where Dallas and the Eagles have games they should win, while the Giants-Falcons game should be a toss-up. Sorry, Redskins and Bears' fans.

Go Lakers!

Good mornin' all good folks in Lakerland! TomK, LakerTom, Phred, Faith, all who commented on this thread: Thanks for the insight! Now for my two bits. I watch the Lakers run their triangle, waiting for their 'looks', and what I see as the problem is they become tentative, they hesitate, unsure of what to do next, and that allows the opposition to adjust; anytime the other team applys tough defensive pressure, the triangle falls apart, and the Lakers end up taking a bad shot. Sure, an isolation play of Kobe against whomever will usually end up with a basket for us, but too often the next time down the floor, the other team is all ready for it and he's doubled immediately. The Lakers have to force the movement of the ball, cuts and passes and screens, and don't wait for the perfect play to score. Movement, baby, that's what it's all about. I watch the other players just stand around when Kobe has the ball; no one cuts to the basket or moves in for the rebound. He's not going to score every time. And that goes for anyone on an isolation play. Move it, cut to the hoop, get ready to rebound; anything! Just don't stand there looking bored.
That's all for now. Love to all Lakerites- camdog

By the way, what's going on with NBA announcers?

First, Clippers announcers Ralph Lawler and Michael Smith get suspended. Now Marv Albert is denying an altercation with 50 Cent backstage on the Jimmy Kimmel show.

What happened to the good old days, when the brawling was between the players? Just asking.

awesome soapbox rant. Im glad we Laker fans can appreciate the finer things about such an offense. The P&R is a fun way to do things and it can be run in games of 2 on 2, so it appeals to the masses. However, IMO, and I guess Brian's too, the Triangle represents variety and a more developed 5 on 5 way of looking at basketball offense.

The Lakers have not been running the triangle well so far this year. The triangle needs quick player movement and ball movement to flourish and the Lakers have not been there.

With Pau back I think we will see the offense run more effectively. One key is quick cuts and quick passes when the ball goes into the post. Pau is such a great passer. And when good cuts(or just good spacing, which is also key to getting open looks) are rewarded with the ball and 2 points on the stat sheet, everyone starts to respond and the offense gets crisper.

Bynum is a great young center. But at this stage of career he tends to hold the ball too much. When he is doubled, or a step or two too far from the hoop, he needs to move the ball more quickly. He sometimes slows down the offense, and he shoots a very high percentage of the times he touches the ball (Kevin McHale-esque)so his teammates sometimes stop moving when he gets the ball and goes to work.

Not a knock on Drew, Pau is just an experienced player with a high basketball IQ. Drew can learn from him.

Tom D.

Nice rant BK. P&R is a beautiful thing to watch but not every freaking play.
How good does Darren Collison look?

Hi people-

Over the years, it's become exceedingly clear that most of you know more about tech stuff than either of us, so I come with a couple questions:

1) for whatever reason, I can't download iTunes onto my PC-- I get an error message saying that something required by Windows installer isn't there. Suggestions?

2) Does anyone have suggestions for the use of an external microphone for a standard mp3 player?




I agree. So many players come in the NBA today with the knock of being undersized or being a "tweener" that it would seem highly advantageous for a majority of them to bulk up, especially in those primary years in the NBA. Almost every big the Lakers have drafted have had to bulk up some, from Brian Cook to Travis Knight to Vlade to Bynum.


No matter what kind of offense used if you have bad shooting percentage, don't rebounds and don't go for defense, then winning is remote to happen. That is what's going on when Pau was sitting on the bench. The 2nd unit self destruct with numerous turnovers and bad shooting. Will the triangle work? Will the pick and roll work if you can't get a point you're just one foot away from the ring?Advance knowledge in basketball comes from basic fundamentals first. It is not the fault of the triangle offense but more on those Lakers eagerness in scoring a point through those risky passes that contribute to the breakdown. Another one, Luke, Fisher, Sasha all alone out there in the perimeter unguarded but could not buy a basket.

Sasha is a good shooter but has been in a funkever since he renewed his contract last year. He failed to contribute last year, failed to make it to the Slovenian team and continue to disappear in the last dozen games. i think this guy is plain lazy and comfortable with what is going on, it is Ok with him to be the 11th man. I'm still hoping for Sasha and Ammo to contribute some production whether their p/t is 5 minutes or 15 minutes. They were mentioned yesterday by Mike Bresnahan on his article with regards to their medium sized contracts. The old man may have deep pocket to absorb non productive players but not to the point of paying luxury taxes too. How can you justify a 5M player sitting on the bench and not injured? NJ Nets are winless, i think if Lakers want to shop around there are some good individual players with expiring contract too. Or go with trading for 1st rd draft picks in 2011 or 12.

Lawler and Smith should not have been suspended but just reprimanded. Once they apologized, it should be over.

I would respond to Jon K post that Californians are just being too sensitive and in particular the first generation immigrants. Here are some problems of immigrants (legal). They are caught in between with the mixed or hybrid culture, sometimes they could not decipher what is a prank, a snide or a prejudice in their daily contacts. I was reading the dialogue of Smith and Lawler, the Bogut remark was not offensive but it was guard or passing ability struck more discord on those immigrant rooting for their own "paisano". With regards to the pronunciations like "eye-rock" or "eye-ran", it is ok if it goes both ways. Americans have problems in pronouncing vowels sounds while foreign born immigrants missed those consonants like "th" or "sh" the p & f sounds, american phonics and idioms. If one forgives for one's shortcomings, then, the other one should also understand the handicap of adjusting to both cultures and languages. Once the ego of superiority comes into play, it will be hard to distinguish now who is at fault? In retrospect, it boils down to education, mutual respect and understanding to prevent animosities.

Andrew Bynum should’ve stayed after work Thursday night
November 20th, 2009, 2:23 pm · 4 Comments · posted by KEVIN DING, OCREGISTER.COM
EL SEGUNDO — Andrew Bynum plans on playing Sunday against Oklahoma City despite rolling his right ankle trying to defend Chicago’s Brad Miller on Thursday night.
Bynum was able to walk out of Staples Center without tremendous discomfort, so he didn’t stay after the game to get treatment on the ankle at the most critical time: right after getting hurt. So naturally the ankle was pretty sore when he woke up Friday morning, and he sat out practice Friday to get all sorts of treatment on it.
It should be a lesson to Bynum to be professional and get treatment ASAP if there’s any doubt about it.

Speaking of Bynum, the young kid made some eye catching comments yesterday in Mike Bresnahan article.

On the 91.3 M player payroll and the $ 112.7 total expenditure including luxury taxes. Basically, Jerry Buss keeps reaching his checkbook. Bynum remarked: " As long as he keeps winning, I'll think he'll keep doing it."

Mike B countered: "It's a lot of money. The Lakers better win it all to please their owner, no?" Bynum said: "it doesn't add any pressure, it just makes us more confident because we know we have a team that's capable of beating everybody."

~~Here is a player who recently learned playing professional basketball through kareem, 22 year old through Kareem and often injured player, is he not gutsy or Gatsby to make those remarks addressed to Mr. Jerry Buss?

Edwin Guerco,

"Here are some problems of immigrants (legal). They are caught in between with the mixed or hybrid culture, sometimes they could not decipher what is a prank, a snide or a prejudice in their daily contacts"

I understand that and I recognize that being an immigrant isn't the easiest thing in the world, but I just don't think it's society's responsibility to walk on eggshells all the time in fear that we might offend the sensibilities of someone else's culture. After all, we're all here in AMERICA.

As the saying goes, "When in Rome, do as the Romans do."

Well, when in America, do as the Americans do.

Americans are funny people. We love humor and most (if not all humor) is rooted in irreverence. So, we give up our irreverence and we give up our sense of humor... and if we give up our sense of humor, we become like the rest of the toolbags around the world who take themselves and everything else too seriously.

No reason to always go about walking on eggshells out of fear of offending some over-sensitive twit. That's just no way to live life.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

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



What version of windows are you running?

Thanks, Hobbit-

I'm running Windows XP, trying to install the latest version of iTunes. Here's the message I'm getting:

"There is a problem with this windows installer package. A program required for this install to complete could not be run. Contact your support personnel or package vendor."

I've hunted around for a solution, and haven't found anything that has done the trick.



Clippers broadcast team should not have been suspended. Surely most of the commentators on TV says things that are not appropiate and fun to all the audience but you always have the possibility to change the channel. If we use the same rule, Barkley and Kenny Smith should have been suspended for 100 games already. There is indeed too much hypersensibility out there (not only in the US, also in Europe where I come from).

Hi Zaira,

I'm from Milan too.

No surprise, Lakers are the most international NBA team without any doubt..




In Case You Missed It...


All Things Lakers »

Your database for all things purple and gold.

Find a Laker

Search a name

Select a season

Choose one of our lists



About the Bloggers

Bleacher Report | Lakers

Reader contributions from Times partner Bleacher Report

More Lakers on Bleacher Report »

Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists:

In Case You Missed It...