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Phil Jackson's return improves chances for Lakers to three-peat


Phil Jackson thought as recently as last week he'd be leaning toward retirement, but he's found a different answer eight days later. Jackson believed he was in the worst of health, lamenting how it's become more challenging to get through an NBA season after two hip replacements, heart problems, a sore knee and painful kidney stones. But medical tests convinced him he could still make it. He acknowledged he's pretty much accomplished all there is in the game with his 11 NBA titles, that is of course, until a reporter mentioned he'd have the chance to three-peat for the fourth time in his coaching career.

"That's ridiculous," Jackson said.

Jackson's decision to coach the Lakers in the 2010-2011 season was announced by the team Thursday. And it speaks to how the Lakers are now in a stronger position to three-peat.

Whether or not Jackson returned, his legacy would've remained etched in stone. He has the most championships of any NBA coach. He established a new Lakers franchise record for regular season victories this season. He ranks first all-time in postseason history in winning percentage (69.7%) and victories (225). And Jackson's teams are 48-0 in playoff series after winning Game 1. More importantly, he demonstrates why managing egos and channeling talent trumps X's and O's and constant yelling.

“Count me in,” Jackson said in a statement Thursday. “After a couple weeks of deliberation, it is time to get back to the challenge of putting together a team that can defend its title in the 2010-11 season. It’ll be the last stand for me, and I hope a grand one.”

As impressive a feat it would be for Jackson to three-peat twice with the Bulls and the Lakers, that's not why Lakers fans should be celebrating Jackson's decision to stay. Beyond knowing this is a sign of good health, Jackson's return already addresses the Lakers most pressing off-season question only a day into free agency. While the rest of the basketball world can watch where LeBron James ultimately lands, the Lakers know the major piece of their roster will be there to fight off any teams trying to stock up for a shot against the Lakers.

Sure, there are still off-season questions the Lakers must address. The team and Derek Fisher are still in negotiations. The team is weighing whether they'd commit Shannon Brown to a long-term contract. They still have to see if any teams are actually interested in Jordan Farmar. And they'll determine whether second-round picks Devin Ebanks and Derrick Caracter will make the roster. But those issues are secondary compared to what Jackson's return means to the team.

With the Lakers' Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Ron Artest, Lamar Odom and Andrew Bynum locked in to long-term deals, Jackson will coach a team that possesses great chemistry. Various injuries prevented the chemistry from fully blossoming, but Bryant, Gasol, Odom and Bynum plan to take it easy this off-season. Artest experienced a learning curve upon his arrival, but things finally clicked late in the Finals and he'll likely listen more to Jackson's suggestions next season. Complacency may set in from time to time, but Jackson's "last stand" remark surely provides the motivation they'll need. 

Had Jackson decided not to stay, the Lakers would've had to worry about other issues. Beyond having to hire another coach and possibly new assistants, the Lakers would've experienced other growing pains. There would have been a transition phase with adopting to a new system. There would have been a chance the team wouldn't receive the coach's message as well as Jackson's. And the team may have fractured apart without Jackson's calm presence to oversee everything. 

“We’re extremely pleased that Phil has decided to return,” Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak said in a statement. “With this most recent championship, we’ve now won five titles in the ten years he’s been our head coach and have been to the Finals in seven of those ten years, which is amazing. He’s not only the best coach for this team, but quite simply the best coach in the history of the NBA.”

--Mark Medina

Follow the L.A. Times Lakers blog on Twitter: E-mail the Lakers blog at

Photo: Lakers Coach Phil Jackson, along with family and friends, celebrates the NBA championship after defeating the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the Finals. Credit: Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times.

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Thanks Captain Obvious!

|____PJ Farewell Tour Bus ___\__\__


complex brotha
Rick Friedman
Laker Tom
Mark Medina

You asked for it, and you got it... ALL ABOARD LAKERNATION!!!
Let's make PJ's finale a memorable one with the 4th 3Peat in his illustrious career...

Voila, the ploy worked! Does this mean he won't have to take the pay cut?

While it can be debatable just EXACTLY what Phil is great at I can now say we all agree on one thing he is absolute master of without equal: psycho-babble head games!

Phil's ability to get into friends' and foes' minds to get what he wanted is the greatest, I concede! LOL!

Please dont pick up busts like blake or watson or whoever else. Fish is better then those fools anyways. Just give shannon a chance to start.

LMAO @ LEWSTRS Muwahahahahahahahaha Fist Bump !

I had one last thought.. since this IS and will be Phils Farewell/3peat tour.. I was thinking how cool would it be to get.. wait for it...... SHAQ back !!!! Yup.. extend an olive branch, offer Shaq to back up Drew and a bargain basement discount so he can retire a Laker and help us get another 3peat.. after all, he was part of our very first 3peat ?? I'm jus sayin guys.. its LA !!! Our Happy Ending I'm not saying Shaq is the answer, but he's better then DJ and he knows the system, he and Kobe have buried the hard feelings.. I think it can work.. Mitch ???

No way in hell Kobe allows Shaq to come back. He wants to widen the rings gap between himself and the big delusional, not let that fat idiot ride his coattails to a last gasp ring.

Besides, he'll be pushing 400 by the time the season starts and no way he plays for the minimum. He'll be looking for like 10mil and if Darko's worth 4 or 5mil, someone'll pay snaq a 1 yr deal for 8-12.

you know... i was just thinking: there was a time that Kobe was out for 6-8 games and the team only lost one of those. the ball was MOVING. maybe these guys aren't as bad as i think. they just look worse when kobe is on the floor! YIKES!! oh well... IN BUSS WE TRUST!!

@ htj -

Yes hearing Wade, James and Bosh on a team looks and sounds deadly. But they still have to accomplish winning the whole thing...

Not just the best record of the regular season...not just making or winning the ECF, but going all the way and winning the chip...looking good on paper and actually winning rings are 2 different things...

You have heard Kobe and others saying how hard it is to win a Championship, and even harder to defend one...

Even the Miami hired and bought trio of gunslingers do win a championship, like the Big 3 in Boston, does that constitute a Dynasty...

To me that is considered a 'flash in the pan' least the Chowder Big 3 made it to the Finals 2 out of the last 3 years...and I still don't consider them a Dynasty...

So crowning the possible Big 3 in Miami a Dynasty, is as absurd as saying LeBron James is the GOAT...

Re-Posted by: LEW


Wade or LBJ pairing with Bosh to join Rose and Noah in Chicago seem like a scarier proposition than the three of them joining forces in Miami with a canon fodder supporting cast.

That's one reason to pursue the S/T deal with Bosh here in LA. I love me some Drew, and a healthy Drew to me is better than Bosh being a Laker. That said, to block the formation of an Eastern Superpower, it'd be worth considering shipping Drew off to Toronto. Of course if Drew finally managed to stay healthy, which isn't without precedent, I don't see any Eastern superteam taking us out.


Please stop already. Luke's contract is a disaster now, it was a disaster when he signed, and it will be a disaster until he retires. Luke had his only productive season in his contract year. He was slow and injury prone, and the fact that he never came back from injuries on time should have sounded the warning bells. Lamar had to go through some tough negotiations to get his contract, even after contributing heavily to back to back finals. Yet, the front office offered an injury prone Luke a six year contract at 12:01 of free agency, without even testing the market! Kupchack has made some nice moves the past few years, but Luke's contract was not one of them. And please stop making silly (almost offensive) comparisons between Luke's contributions as a Laker to those of Kurt Rambis and Brian Shaw.

Is it just me or is becoming fairly clear none of these dudes are going anywhere without swinging a 6 year, max money deal?

Further proof that whenever anyone says it's not about the money, it most certainly is.

Excellent news

Hopefully knowing this might be the Zen Master's last season EVER will be the ultimate motivation for these guys.

Then PJ will definitely have to update his book after this.


Kurt and BShaw were both gamers who brought it every night. They also made nice additions to the coaching staff. The same place we all wish Luke would just go now.


Let go of the shake-weight.

"The Last Stand" a sequel to "The Last Season". Phil Jackson's farewell tour will be grand. Pray it will end with a three-peat. God bless, Phil Jackson and the Los Angeles Lakers.

This is from 3 posts back, but I hate being at the bottom of an old pile.

And great news about PJ. NOw if we can just get a guard who can shoot, one shooter, and make room for the 2 "super seconds" we got from the draft.

Repost surprise:

"Well said MM. That is exactly why we love Ron. No one else on this team could have done that to Pierce. What a moment for Artest. I mean, he did EXACTLY what we brought him here for, which rarely happens in sports. Shaq accomplished it, Kirk Gibson, Artest, Mychael Thompson...all these guys came here for a reason and fulfilled their goal. Maybe Gretzky too. I don't remember many Kings championship series other than the Gretzky finals trip.

And these last 2 rings are so SUPER special because they were so unexpected, and Ron's work against Pierce especially, but also against all the scoring SFs, was amazing and really something worth remembering for the rest of our lives. Ron brought this city together like no other Laker I've ever seen, save Magic, Chick, Dr Buss and maybe Shaq. As much as I dislike Shaq now, he was loved by us all for a while and he made a lot of us good friends.

Still, I can say with 100% certianty that Ron Artest is my favorite Laker of all time. I say that with Magic getting a flyer because he's too much the obvious choice. But god...of the people, for the people. For me, Ron has become that great example of the Thomas Paine American who gets, and makes good use of a second chance.

I mean, the guy just came in a kicked Paul Pierce's butt so bad he's moved into the wheelchair permanently. God bless America.

And that photo is awesome. Ron's not phased at ALL, while PP looks all screwed up."


htj, I totally agree with you about LBJ/Wade + Bosh in Chicago being more fearsome than the three of them teaming in Miami with no cap room to add any other pieces. As for the prospect of shipping AB to Toronto for Bosh, I couldn't disagree more (though I know you said you love AB when healthy).

A year ago, I felt that the Lakers would be significantly better this past season than they were the year before, even though they'd just won the title. My rationale at the time was that we got a big upgrade at the SF position (I liked Ariza; but I loved Artest) and an upgrade at Center/PF when Andrew returned to health.

Well, one year and one more championship later and my thoughts are pretty much exactly the same. Another year in the system for Ron, and the confidence that comes from playing a huge role in winning the title, will do wonders for his game next year. And, we've got another great opportunity to improve in the middle as Andrew comes back from surgery.

Obviously, making it through a year without another injury is key for Andrew, but when you consider the prospect of an improved Artest and a healthy Drew, plus a healed up Kobe to boot, well I don't think any free agent moves this offseason are going to change the balance of power in the NBA....

Somebody mentioned Luke Walton? surely Luke has had to be Phil's draft choice. Of course instead of drafting a "normal" basketball player with speed or athleticism or hop or whatever physical gift it has got to be Phil's idea to draft a guy regardless of his physical attributes "just because" he maybe a triangle-type of guy.

Maybe at the time Phil had this fantasy that this Luke Walton kid was going to be the next Point Forward Scottie Pippen? Hah hah hah... Also, remember Brian Cook, another supposed prototypical triangle player?

I got to thinking if it was Phil coaching the Lakers then I sincerely doubt he would have supported drafting Kobe, a talented but precocious teenager with a rebellious streak. He'd probably wanted to draft an "upper" classman with high IQ and high degree of obedience first before basketball talent!


Put me on that thar nadwagon thar.

I wonder if teams will give him gifts as he finishes the regular season a la Kareem's farewell tour back in the dizzle.

In celebration of Phil Jackson returning for one more year, I offer these humble videos of some sweet music:

After Phil returned home to Montana, he had a moment like this...

Then he realized, he's really this...

But Phil's not done yet, he wants to make some more of these...

But in his heart, Phil's a Dead Head, so I leave you with this...

Yessir, Phil's had one long strange trip and I'm just happy it's been with the Lakers.

God, who am I to argue with you? I'm really 50-50 either way, and it's not like Bosh is invincible and couldn't go down with an injury either. Plus Andrew has chemistry with his teammates, and may just finally get it together and make it through a whole season. I'd feel a lot better if he'd gotten his surgery now instead of screwing around in South Africa watching a sport I get the feeling he isn't all that in to. At least Kobe seems to actually be a fan.

Bosh is also counting on a sign and trade to get his money because he doesn't have the marketing draw of the other two, Wade already said he isn't leaving Miami so he's getting his max money, and I don't see her highness being happy being the one dude making$30 mil less than two dudes he's arguably superior too. The superteam is far from a forgone conclusion. It probably isn't even all that likely. I'd give it like 10%. Two of them teaming up - I'd say 30%.


I'm catching that bus!!!


I have to get on this 4th 3Peat PJ Farewell Bus Ride!!!!! The Stars are once again aligning themselves for this new chapter in LAKERS HISTORY and it should be the ride of our lives!!!!!


Adande (I know) suggested Phil might stay for the following season because of the lockout possibly shortening the season to 50 games... I won't call it a farewell tour until he does.. "Last stand" has a Philesque ambiguity about it...

Also... Somewhere out there Jerry Sloan is cursing.

Sloan is the Charlie Brown to Phil's Lucy. And the football is the championship.

The news that Phil Jackson is returning for one final run at another NBA championship and possible fourth three-peat is certainly “grand” news for Lakerholics. I know there are a few begrudging fans like Pfunk who would prefer to see Phil leave but I think most of us fully appreciate what Phil has accomplished. Personally, I would like to see the Lakers even the score against the Bulls as the team that provided Phil with the most rings. And to see Kobe match MJ in rings earned for Phil.
I’ve been sitting back and watching the talk on the blog about Phil’s successor and laughing at how few bloggers seem to be seriously concerned. Being an older fan, I’ve been witness to the passage of time and fading of relevancy that often happens with major changes. Believe me. The Lakers just dodged the biggest bullet yet in their quest to tie the Celtics for NBA championships. There is life with Phil – pretty much a sure thing with odds heavily in your favor – and life with a new coach.
The Lakers fans who are Phil haters and Kobe haters just drive me crazy. I don’t see how you can not LOVE these guys for what they have brought to this franchise. The greatest coach and greatest player in the game today and they’re Lakers. Man, you should be thanking your lucky stars, not hating and finding ridiculous ways to twist every event into a billboard for your misguided obsessions. I won’t even get into the Pau, Luke, and Drew haters. What a way to treat a bunch of proven champs!
Make no mistake, though, that bullet is now circling the calendar and looking to strike at the Lakers heart in 2011, when we WILL have to bring in a new coach for the team. And that is not going to be an easy decision in my mind. I don’t think that Brian Shaw has the stature and charisma to succeed as the coach to take over after Phil Jackson. There is only 1 candidate that bleeds total purple and gold, has the basketball smarts and savvy, and would immediately garner the full respect of the entire team, including Kobe. That man is of course is Laker co-captain and NBAPA president Derek Fisher.
So here’s the solution. Fish retires as a player and the Lakers give him a new contract as an assistant coach, with the understanding that Phil will groom him to take over next year. The Lakers would then have $5M available to go out and get a couple of point guards while proactively solving the problem of who would succeed Phil Jackson. Why take a chance on a Brian Shaw or Byron Scott when we have the player available whom the NBA general managers voted as the best NBA coaching prospect.


I want to be on top of the bus. I'm an old surfer dude and would love to surf across America on PJ's Farewell Tour.

"Surf City, here I come!"

We need Farewell Tour T Shirts......

As a Lakers fan, the thought came to me that I wanted Phil Jackson will be wearing a Lakers hat when they induct him into the basketball hall of fame. Oh wait, is he already in the hall of fame? Well, I will still be satisfied if it is a virtual hat, meaning I want him to go in as a Laker, not as a Bull. That may seem silly but that’s just the way I feel. Just like Reggie Jackson went in as a Yankee.
Finally, when you consider what will be at stake next year – Lakers tying the Celtics for most rings, Kobe tying MJ, Lakers and Kobe tying Bulls and MJ for most rings earned for Phil – you can start to see that next season is going to a season for the ages. It is the ultimate redemption tour that will elevate the Lakers franchise to match the Celtics and Kobe Bryant to match Michael Jordan. Throw in all the free agent wildness and the impending lockout in 2011, and you have cataclysmic season.

So, now to address the FAs...
How about a S/T Bynum + Artest for L. James?
Lebron at the 3...Kobe at the 2...Pau at the 4/5...
I could play point and they'd still win the west. Hell, I could play center and we'd get through the first 2 rounds.

Laker Tom -

What is your feelings about what number will the Lakers retire for Kobe...will it be #8, #24 or both...

Do you feel Fish should get his jersey retired...Every player with their jersey in the rafters are in the HOF, so that hurts Fish...and in the same breath, if you hang Fish's jersey because of his 5 rings, then I think Cooper's should go up first...But if we do complete this next 3Peat...then Fish would have 6...That might be the the tipping factor for his cause...

Last, does PJ get some sort of acknowledgement like Chick did in the mighty Staples rafters...

I wouldn't underestimate that sleazy Russian in the LBJ sweepstakes.

I'm sure he's already given up his idea on how to pay Lebron under the table to give him what he wants.

The guys a mobster, make no doubt about it. Be curious to see what kinds of shenanigans he pulls over there. Then once he's got LBJ and whoever else to hop on board, they're stuck and all those "side deals" go by the wayside.

If LBJ signs with the Nets, I fully expect Delonte West to have an "accident."

|____PJ Farewell Tour Bus ___\__\__


complex brotha (window seat-shotgun)
Rick Friedman
Laker Tom
Mark Medina (window seat)
LEWSTRS (next to bar)
Jamie Sweet
Nemaia Faletogo
Carlos DeeP
Fatty (surfboard on top luggage rack)
2Phatt (window seat)

You asked for it, and you got it... ALL ABOARD LAKERNATION!!!
Let's make PJ's finale a memorable one with the 4th 3Peat in his illustrious career...

Mike Miller offered 5yr 30 million deal... im sold


This Zen drama that Phil just pulled on Lakers team was premeditated; it was to get his team all fired up and ready to go for the next season, no rest for the weary.

How many people wanna keep doing the "Trade for Lebron" crap when The Cavaliers already said they would *NEVER* do a sign and trade to *any* team since they feel he is coming back to Cleveland (if he will is another story). If he comes great if not we'll survive and more.

Seriously for those who are blasting Kobe as a ball hog lets say then LBJ is the biggest ball dominant selfish player since Allen Iverson! Yes he dished out assists but hell wouldn't he trust his teammates more to set HIM up rather handling the ball and doing whatever the hell he wants? Shoots just as much as Michael and Kobe yet still is ball dominant to hand out 8apg.....BALL DOMINANT.

Yea and look where Lebron is now: ZERO rings. Twice having the best record and losing it to DEFENSIVE-Oriented teams (Orlando and Boston). Until he learns like MJ and Kobe to TRUST his teammates to help him instead of him helping him he'll just be a 6'9 ALLEN IVERSON.

I just saw that on the fox sports twitter, which was just updated with the Lakers saying that gave Miller a deadline of tonight, with Miller's camp asking for more time.

WHERE are the fans who lose patience with Phil and have critiqued his coaching style, hmmmm..

I really don't find it to be a coincidence that Phil announced his comeback a day after Doc Rivers announced his comeback. And now I hear reports about the Celtics working on deals for both Paul Pierce and Ray Allen.

The series is tied 1-1. It's time for the tie breaker.

Go Lakers!

KOBE trusting his team mates, yes as recently as game 7 for 3 qtrs he thought he was trusting his team mates...

Couldn't be happier to see Phil come back - and for a last stand. So we can expect two things - a team committed to sending him out with a title, and a book from Phil.

I had expected him to decide in time for the free agency period. There are vets for whom the chance to play for LA and Phil - and a last chance at that - will be a big factor in signing.

With Walton injured, the Lakers have to fill half of the 12 active rosters slots - but the key guys are locked up. This will be a interesting summer.

So happy Phil is coming back. He is oddly unappreciated in a lot of circles, but he is the best coach the Lakers ever had by far, with the possible exception of Bill Sharman before he lost his voice.

Riley wore out his welcome with players. Phil develops loyalty - his players don't get tired of him, they want him to stay. MJ. Kobe.

I feel good about 2010-2011. And I don't worry about Buss's financial commitment - all these years he has never flinched at paying what it takes to win. It is lazy journalism to suggest he won't do what it takes.

I don't understand what the Hawks are thinking giving Joe Johnson that kind of money. That franchise is going nowhere, and Horford will probably be gone with that contract. Too bad for the Hawks.

Go Lakers!

Please Miller, take this deal!!! We need your sweet J to open up the lane! I've always thought this guy would be a perfect fit in the triangle. Lakers would be stacked if he signs because you know Fish will be signed by the end of next week.


I'll Ride That Bus!!!!!!

But It's Destination is NOT ONLY A THREE-PEAT, IT'S THE:




"It's Been a Long, a Long Time Coming"


Mike Miller to the Lakers would not only mean another perimeter shooter, it would also mean we would have two "Heidi" headband wearers. Sashi and Mike.


I cant help but think if this Mike Miller offer is true then the Lakers must have another deal ready to go to unload contracts. Maybe LO along with Vujacic. Then they sign a veteran big for less money. I just hope they get the PG position taken care of because I cant stand to watch another season of the leagues PG's kill us night after night during the regular season. At least DFish stepped up in the playoffs.

Has anybody heard anything about how the Lakers 2nd round pick from last year is doing? I know he went to play overseas but the Lakers still have his rights.

welcome back Phil !!! let's get ready to rumble a three-peat !!! hahahha
first of all, lakers shud let go of benga, farmar, morison and powell. try to keep shannon brown and fisher, but try to get steve black from clippers as point guard, mike miller as small forward and raja bell as shooting guard and we'll have a heck of a good bench......yet even better !!1

what do you guys think?

clippers courting lebron... LOL.. what a grand waste of time!

max contract offers to joe johnson and rudy gay? darko 20MIL and gooden 30 MIL... WTF is goin on here??

and richard jefferson opts out of 15MIL??!!

L.A. Lakers offered 5 years, $30 million to Mike Miller. Hope he will sign!!!


you wrote: Has anybody heard anything about how the Lakers 2nd round pick from last year is doing? I know he went to play overseas but the Lakers still have his rights.

my response: Tony Gafney was picked up by the Boston Celtics for the

who cares if lebron, wade and bosh team up together....
bring it on !!! hahhaha
that will be an exciting game to watch in the FINALS. !!!

lakers are the best team in the NBA!!!

hobbitmage...No it wasnt Gafney. It was Chinemelu Elonu of Texas A&M. Anybody heard anything on him?

MSNBC Sports is reporting Mike Miller was offered the full MLE for 5 years and.......

he would be wise to take it if he really wants to play for a Title.

Wow, in one day, PJ comes back, Sasha is told he's the back up point guard to Fisher, and now Miller is offered a contract he might take.

Where would Miller 6'8" - 50% shooter - 48 % from the 3 - fit in and get enough time? Could someone help me understand this rotation would work? Anybody? Anybody?

Fatty,. my take is, it would depend on the game situation; if they need some D(shut down) out there, SV would get the call & if they need offense, MM would get called. But with his shooting expertise, I say he will get his fair share or P/T & should!
I would still move LO for obvious reasons any Laker fan would understand; too much for not enough.


Miller fits in perfect. He would be Kobe and Artest's back up. I'd bet Miller is willing to sacrifice some playing time to play for a championship.

I remember when Jerry West was trying to get Mike Miller for the Lakers a few years back. He ended up in Memphis when Jerry West was their GM. Now Kupchak is offering Miller a contract. Interesting.

Go Lakers!

Laker Tom

So true, next year there'll enough story lines to go around. Phil's farewell just might take the spotlight unless Kobe steals it back with an MVP reg season performance. How lucky are we to witness history year after year? Dr Buss is a lot of unprintable things, but he is and has been the best owner in any sport.


Please have the Phil 3 peat bus pick me up.

Unless they changed the MLE I don't know how the Lakers can offer more than $5 mil per year.


Sasha has been told he might/should get some time at pg.

pg: D-Fish/Sasha/?
sg: KB/MM/Sasha/?
sf: RA/MM/LW/Kobe/LO
pf: Pau/LO/RA
C: Bynum/Pau/LO

# Source told that Lakers gave Mike Miller a deadline of tonight. Miller's camp trying to receive more time. about 2 hours ago via UberTwitter

# Source has also told both LeBron James & Dwyane Wade are and will recruit Mike Miller whenever they end up. about 3 hours ago via TweetDeck

Phil Jackson's return improves chances for Lakers to three-peat...
nuff said

Thanks Metallic. I was hoping the feedback would be a little more promising on his development. That did not sound overly complimentary.

@Metallic "# Source has also told both LeBron James & Dwyane Wade are and will recruit Mike Miller whenever they end up. about 3 hours ago via TweetDeck"

So Let's See, Who Does Mike Miller (aka "Heidi") have a better shot at winning a championship with?

LeBron (Zero Rings), Dwade (1 Ring) or Kobe & Phil (Combined 17 Rings)(And Don't Forget Fisher's 5, Plus Pau's 2, LO's 2, Drew's 2, & Artest's 1)?

Lakers' 16 Rings with the Fab Five or Cleveland (Zilch), Miami (One), Chicago (6, But Zilch without Phil), etc., etc.?

Unless that Headband's On Too Tight, Their's Only Sane Choice: LAKERS!!!!!!


Go! Uncle Phil! Message to all the Laker players: Phil's carried the team for the past decade, now it's their turn to Win One for the Zen Master!

If the story about Mike Miller is true, I'm wondering whether management is speculating that Miller could not only back up Kobe and Artest, but also could spend some minutes at the point . . .

The zen in lowercase is the original..I have an imposter on here! LOL. All the original blog family remembers me on here.

Mike Miller to L.A..Maybe it's a sign Odom is gone..Although they set a "deadline" for tomight, so it probably wont happen.

I spent a few hours yesterday going through a bunch of SI Vault stuff about Phil, Jordan and random NBA stuff. I found quite a few interesting articles. One of those told the story of Phil Jackson's early life right through his first championship with the Bulls. Pretty fascinating is the fact that few people, including himself, expected to the Zen Master to become a coach. And even after winning the 1991 championship he expressed that he wanted to retire only a few years down the road. There's myriad other anecdotes and details about Phil's early life, and really good read:

The other article I wanted to share was an opinion piece by Rick Reilly right after the Bulls won their 6th chip. I don't agree with what he says, but it is refreshing to come upon a different perspective of the those Bulls. Nowadays Jordan's Bulls are mythologized and seemingly untouchable. I never hear anyone say anything bad about those teams and the hype around them. I just though it a novel thing to find that there was a section of the basketball loving population that did not simply bow down and admire their greatness:

The next thing is not from SI, but it is about Jordan, and specifically how he relates to Kobe in pressure situations. It's a box score of the 1998 eastern finals game seven against the Pacers. The reason why it is important is because though Jordan never played in a Finals game 7, he did play in a conference finals game 7, the next closest thing. There were many people saying after game 7 of this year's Finals that "Jordan would not have shot the ball like Kobe had he been in a Finals game 7." Well, Jordan shot 9-25 during game 7 of those 98 conference finals. Although it's not as bad as Kobe's 6-24, it's well below 50% shooting. The two games as whole were also quite similar. This year's Finals game 7 final score, 83-79. The Bulls-Pacers game 7: 88-83. The two main stars for the winning sides (Kobe and Gasol for the Lakers, Jordan and Pippen for the Bulls) had poor shooting nights. And finally two "other" guys stepped up and starred offensively for the winning squad, Kukoc and Kerr for the Bulls, Artest and Fisher for the Lakers.

2010 NBA Finals game 7 Box Score:

1998 Eastern Conference Finals game 7:

Also video of the that 1998 game,

Finally, and I know this is not related in any way, but it's just an interesting note: a report on a young Dirk Nowitzki:

Derek Fisher could be groomed as the next Lakers coach. Phil Jackson and Kobe Bryant both like him. Three-peat is in order. Go Lakers.

zen (The original) :

You with lower may be the original but me with upper case is for Real.

Thanks Hobbit for the note as I had not heard that.

How will having 3 young stars, all who like to shoot, work on the same team, IF Miami lands them all ? Even so, the Lakers would dominate the inside game & IF Miller signs, we will have a darn good outside shooting team ourselves!

QUESTION: If the team doesn't bring back Mbenga, & doubt they will, who do you think they'd bring in for that role ?


Never having played for the Lakers I would find it hard to see them putting something up on the wall for Phil, same with Riles. The teams that have won those banners are etched in some of our (my) minds. Riles owns the 80s, Phil owns the early part of this millenium. With Magic and Chick you have two men whose personality took them to a level above what their on court accomplishments could ever achieve. We celebrate the men, not the player or broadcaster with the statues outside of Staples, the jersey and headphones are not so subtle reminders of what they did for a living.


I have mild optimism for Sasha playing more back up PG. Taking foul trouble out of the mix, let's assume that Sasha comes in around the 7 minute mark in the first and leaves at the 5 minute mark in the 2nd. My assumption is that the staff will try to keep Fisher (if/when he signs) at around 20-25 mpg during the regular season. Something similar for the second half, with the weight of the minutes falling in the 4th as opposed to the 3rd.

That's asking at most 24 minutes out of Sasha (less if Lamar is allowed to run the point or possibly Luke if the match up allows it), which seems like a lot seeing as he averaged less than 9 minutes/ game last year and has a carreer average of less than 15. He better put in some stairs and do the parachute running thing Adrian Peterson does. I worry we'll see alot of perimeter passing and not alot of inside out or slashing basketball.

Or Sasha could take another step in the progression of his game by simply being more consistent, more in tune with the game and less in his mind. If he was a 40% 3-point shooter and decent at his pull up game it would enable Fish to chillax during the regular season and be healthy and have gas in the tank when it matters the most. We could be real good defensively and we'll rebound better.

Especially if they sign a Mike Miller/T-Mac type player (which the only one I see would be T-Mac, as Miller can make more than that, and I would imagine they'd want to work him out pre-contract; would T-Mac allow that? If he did it would certainly show he had a team first attitude as far as his contract is concerned), that could be a long range attack off the bench we haven't had in awhile.

The only thing with a back up back court of Sasha and another aged player would be our lack of a cutting game with the starters on the bench. For all his faults, Jordan was one of the better players on the team that could get to the rim and either get a shot off (sometimes quite questionable shots) or make a play to get someone else a shot. My fear is we'll be forcing Kobe to drive to the hole alot during the regular season and he'll get banged up all over again. I'd like to see if he can win another MVP and he needs to have health on his side.

I could envision a Ron/Kobe back court and a Lamar/Pau/Bynum front court that Phil has been working a couple of years on, somehwere in a remote location in the Himalayas, he has an underground basketball court where the Lakers ACTUALLY go to train in the off season.

Well, maybe not. To clarify, I am assuming that Shannon Brown signs elsewhere and we are left with Fish, Sasha and a desperate vet/ rook/d-leaguer as 3rd/4th guard off the bench. Lamar has to hope someone impresses in camp as a back up PF, cause otherwise it's him.

In general, I think we have a pretty good shot at repeating, it'll be harder than any of the others because a couple of teams seem like they'll be stacked. Kobe and Pau should be feeling good come training camp. I hope Lamar gets surgery and tries some Tae Kwan Do instead of boxing, he needs more focus, more discipline less raw aggression, we got Ron for that.

Now, some MORE (of the same) celebration of Phil Jackson returning for one more year, I offer these humble videos of some sweet music I fell represent Phil's journey since the confetti fell on our title clinching game:

After Phil returned home to Montana, he had a moment like this...

Then he realized, he's really this...

But Phil's not done yet, he wants to make some more of these...

But in his heart, Phil's an old timer, so I leave you with this...

Yessir, Phil's had one long strange trip and I'm just happy it's been with the Lakers.

Jamie Sweet - I think you have Phil Jackson confused with Bill Walton.


>>>Further proof that whenever anyone says it's not about the money, it most
>>> certainly is

I totally agree. It would not surprise me at all if LeBron went back to Cleveland to get the max money, because they've flat out said that they're not willing to s&t. Toronto has made it clear that they will s&t, so it wouldn't surprise me to see Bosh gone, but maybe with Dallas or Houston instead of one of the teams with big cap space.

And of course, that's the main reason why Wade won't leave either.

What worries me is this... what if some team offers Derek Fisher 3 years at more than the Lakers want to pay. Don't laugh. It has happened before and Fish took the money. It's not so much losing Fish (although his playoff clutchness is unquestionable). But with all the stoopid money being thrown around, there might be NO decent PGs that would sign for the 2.5 they reportedly offered to Fish, and they may end up with Javaris Crittenton starting at PG just because they couldn't GET anyone better.

ZEN with all caps, I suggest you pick another name since people will get confused..But if you don't care, then so be it.

Mike Miller, some words of advice: Remember what happened with Trevor Ariza. When Buss, Kupchak and Co. say they'll yank their offer if you don't take them up on it promptly, they mean business. So don't screw around and end up screwing yourself. Is the prospect of earning a few extra bucks really more enticing than the opportunity to join the Champs?

>>>Unless they changed the MLE I don't know how the Lakers can offer more
>>> than $5 mil per year.

The MLE increases each year - This year it starts at 5.8 million with 8% raises. If the offer reported (5 years for 30 million) is true, that's just slightly less than a full MLE.

>>>If the story about Mike Miller is true, I'm wondering whether management is
>>> speculating that Miller could not only back up Kobe and Artest, but also
>>> could spend some minutes at the point . . .

Allnet - I think you're on the right track. Miller is an excellent passer and rebounder, in addition to being an excellent shooter.

My thought wasn't specifically to use him as a point GUARD, but as a point FORWARD. On the other hand, it wouldn't be the first time Phil used a tall shooting guard as a PG.

As a point forward, Miller could come of the bench in tandem with Sasha (or Brown), but with Miller bringing the ball up the court and initiating the offense. That could totally work.

And importantly, Miller is a much better shooter than Blake or Ridnour, almost as good a shooter as Korver, and a better all-around player than all three combined.

It's good to hear that Buss is actually willing to spend the full MLE. If Miller falls through, then maybe they could get Blake or Ridnour for less than a full MLE, but Miller would be a better asset than either.

>>>Mike Miller to L.A..Maybe it's a sign Odom is gone.

Not sure I follow the logic there. Odom is a PF. Miller is a SG/SF. He's not big enough to play PF.

LTLF, I can't speak for the Poster of that, but I think they might mean that LO makes way too much money for what he contributes, & I'd rather pay the $$ to Miller than LO, if for no other reason Miller would welcome playing for a chance to win the Championship & work hard each & every game instead of maybe 1 of 4 or 5, as LO seems to just take it for granted.

1st order of priority for the Lakers off season. GET A SHOOTER!

So Mitch said the #1 priority is a PG, a guard. Mike Miller is a SF/SG combo, I guess Lakers were exposed by the BOSTON's defense, even the Suns and Thunder's zone defense of LAKERS LACK OF SHOOTING. Artest got lucky and got the Lakers bailed out. Mitch is a genius trying to get Mike Miller being the highest priority. I am impressed!

A veteran proven shooter is more important than a Point Guard in Lakers title defense. VERY GOOD POINT MITCH K.

">>>Mike Miller to L.A..Maybe it's a sign Odom is gone.

Not sure I follow the logic there. Odom is a PF. Miller is a SG/SF. He's not big enough to play PF."

I think the logic is bench production/contribution, consistency and salary.

Odom $8.5M ?pts and ?rebs shooting perctage ...
Miller $5M ?pts and ?rebs shooting percentage ...

But I hope Mike Miller is an addition and no subtraction in the LAKERS core which includes Odom.

Mike Miller = Vlad Rad. No defense. For every shot he makes, he gives away two baskets to the opponent. That's why dude never won a game. Kupchak, feel free to sign this guy, if you're looking to bring more losses to the team.

That'as what I'm wondering. How is Miller different from Vlad? And I thought Miller was out of basketball. I don't think I've even heard his name in a year and a half.


Mike Miller??

Isn't he considered as a bust?? I don't think he is any good at D, he could play D to the levels of Luke or Radmanovic.

Hope he works out!!

who gives a crap about this jackhole's future other than jeanie?

Even Kobe has 5 rings or more, we still miss shaq. This time we want shaq to help Kobe, instead of Kobe helps shaq.



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