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Pre-season question of the day: Will Lamar Odom's FIBA World Championship experience help him or lead to burnout this season?

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Once the horn sounded, Team USA hugged together in jubilation.

The 81-64 USA victory Sunday over Turkey in the 2010 FIBA World Championship marked the team's first FIBA title since 1994. As Clippers guard Eric Gordon noted in The Times' Fabulous Forum, the feat surpassed expectations because no one from the 2008 Beijing Olympic team opted to play. The victory also was sweet for this team, whose young members forged an identity and a bond.

The title officially gives Team USA a berth in the 2012 London Olympics and cements the notion that the U.S. has adapted to international play. The competition for the 2012 roster spots could be rather interesting.

But soon after the gold-medal victory, it was back to business. The team already had checked out of its hotel before the championship game, with plans to fly back to the U.S. immediately after. They may have wanted to avoid the scrappy crowd of basketball fans in Istanbul, but players' thoughts were surely turning to NBA training camp. For Lakers forward Lamar Odom, camp starts Sept. 25. Lakers fans may be looking forward to the start of camp,  counting the days, hours and minutes, but Odom -- having helped to secure a second consecutive NBA title before spending the summer chasing a gold medal -- likely will welcome the short respite before training begins.  

That leads us to the pre-season question of the day: Will Odom's involvement in the 2010 FIBA World Championship help his game for the 2010-11 season? Or will it just ratchet up the fatigue level of a man who already had a full plate?

 

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Both Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol cited fatigue and injuries as reasons they abstained from the FIBA competition. Basketball mileage could at some point take a toll on Odom. He's played in three consecutive Finals, competed in all 82 games last season and is only a season removed from playing with a sprained left shoulder and sprained right knee. And don't forget that Odom has a reality-TV show lined up with his wife, Khloe Kardashian. With the couple launching a unisex fragrance in February, the Lakers forward could be fielding more commercial offers. You begin to wonder when Odom will ever take a break.

But there are reasons to think Odom will benefit from playing in the FIBA World Championship, as long as he's careful not to succumb to burnout.

His time with Team USA will affect his Olympic legacy as well as his 2010-11 NBA season. Odom's gold medal partly rectifies the bronze he won at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Though Oklahoma City forward Kevin Durant rightfully earned much of the credit in the FIBA championships for seemingly scoring at will (22.8 points per game), Odom's leadership, hustle plays and dependable 7.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game should give him a good shot at landing on the 2012 Olympic roster.

Odom's jack-of-all-trades role with Team USA is a familiar one. Even-keel energy and focus are characteristic of his play with the Lakers.  Sure, he had lapses in both stats and effort, which I noted during Odom's exit interview.  But the role Odom showcased with Team USA closely resembled the one he played on the Lakers. So don't expect a revolutionized Odom next season. I'd hope to see him simply sharpen his skills and improve his ability to play at center when the team needs it.

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Then there's his locker-room presence with the Lakers. Odom recently joked to The Times' Broderick Turner that winning a world championship could give him bragging rights over Lakers guard Kobe Bryant, who hadn't won a world championship. Sure, but Bryant still has the edge, right? 

But consider this nugget from the New York Times' Pete Thamel, who said that, during the FIBA World Championship, Odom "became the soul of this team." Even though Bryant runs the Lakers with his play and Derek Fisher serves as the locker-room leader, Odom's amicable and approachable personality has made him a favorite among the players.

All in all, his experience with Team USA could at least make the Lakers think twice about putting him on the trading block.

But Odom also has to make time to rest. Hmm, how will that go?  Let's turn to numerology readings involving the Lakers roster. I don't really put stock in astrology and the post I wrote was just in good fun, but the results did seem uncannily accurate. A description of Odom: "You tend to be flexible, progressive and restless.You can enhance your life experience even more by increasing your sense of loyalty and patience, better defining your purposes in life and not scattering your attention so much by going too many directions at once."

To avoid burnout, Odom may need to scale back.

I can't fault any player for capitalizing on his marketing potential. But it seems almost inevitable that his schedule will catch up with him. It's like a college kid after a string of all-nighters.

Odom could have gotten plenty of rest this off-season, but he chose to play in the FIBA World Championship, and it was the right choice. But Odom may now need to make some sacrifices. Doing so will help to ensure that his gold-medal experience will pay off with an improved performance in the 2010-11 season.

-- Mark Medina

Follow the L.A. Times Lakers blog on Twitter: twitter.com/latmedina. E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Photos, from top: USA center Lamar Odom tips the ball away from Turkey's Ersan Ilyasova in the FIBA championship game on Sunday. Credit: Kerim Okten / EPA. U.S. center Odom, who finished with 15 points and 10 rebounds, puts down a dunk against Turkey on Sunday. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press. Odom drives past Angola's Joaquim Gomes during Team USA's 121-66 victory last week. Credit: Kerim Okten / EPA

 
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Morning everyone!

Good Morning MM! Can you give me the template again for filling out the reader questionnaire? I've got some time in the next week or so to fill one out.

Good morning Laker crew!

Jon K and KobeMVP888 - nice profiles, stories and memories. I love the blog profiles - great way to see Laker spirit and better understand their Laker history.

LO - I absolutely think there will be carry-over from his FIBA experience. For one thing - he got a championship without Kobe. He was chosen as a leader with expectations to win in diverse circumstances. He showed he could rise to the occasion and contributed excellently to the final game. I think this is huge for Lamar.

Hopefully, Phil will extend the same expectations to be leader of the bench. Perhaps the Lakers should have 3 captains this year: Kobe, Fish and Lamar?

12 more days to camp - woohoo!
Cheers! PLG

Cali -- Awesome! Here's the link to the template. http://lakersblog.latimes.com/lakersblog/2010/08/fill-out-your-la-times-lakers-blog-profile.html

For those who haven't filled one out, feel free to do so. We'll have more profiles on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and then once training camp starts, I'll publish one or two once a week during a slow news day

MM

it will hurt him, thus hurt the team... he was complaining how fatigue and a bad shoulder hampered his play last season. now this season's excuse will be blamed on the fiba(s)... he needs to roll it up and i believe he'll be packaged w/sasha before the trading deadline. chump just might want to be somewhere in FL so he can be closer to Khloe and the T.V. show. it seems like that's all that matters: show business and ron appears to be on the self-promoting, marketing bandwagon as well. he's aiming for a reality show of some sort. just play ball, work your cash wisely and fulfill your obligation per the multi-millions in your contracts. you never know what you have until it's gone. just ask pippen, sprewell, walker, anderson & curry -who's still under contract!! GO LAKERS and IN BUSS WE TRUST!!

Lamar gained a lot from the experience of this FIBA USA Redemption Team and as a co-leader of the group. For the first time, a huge responsibility thrust on his injured shoulder to carry the team acting as role player to athletic young players like Durant and the rest but also a player possessed in cleaning up the boards against taller Euro Centers. His reputation as a feared rebounder is now cemented in his system, his defense and timing have greatly improved. I don't see an injured labrum shoulder out there. Therefore, his participation to the USA team was a win-win for Lamar putting his game to another level. I hope once the season starts, he will not retort back to that infamous on/off switch once he gets Kobe, Pau and Drew in the wing. I want Lamar to be a leader, in fact the 3rd leader next to Fisher and Kobe. He has been in this league for quite sometime now, Lamar should extend leadership qualities to the Lakers. He is also our player/scout against his USAteammates, he could give PJ some run down on their strengths and inherent weaknesses. Forget LO, the sugar coated defense, the reality TV husband, the inconsistent absent minded player LO but more on the retention of Lamar,the leader of the FIBA Champs.

Blitz, I noticed you always chastised Staple 24 for asking in the past to trade Lamar or even trade Kobe. Well, doubting is not really that all bad. He calls it as he sees it. Sometimes through constructive criticisms of fans, our players realized their shortcomings. There is nothing wrong in trying to attain perfection especially if they want to 3-peat. Praises and criticisms go both hand in hand, it is sort of a fan audit within a certain period. Everybody starts at a clean slate on a new season. It is like an accounting record where assets and liabilities are recorded within a particular time frame and see if the financial picture of the enterprise is in good or in bad state.

As long as they are mortals, no player is eternally blessed.

Good morning,


I think he will get tired maybe 1/2 way through the regular season and that's it.
Overall, I think we'll benefit from his experience on the FIBA championship.


Cheers.

Lamar Odom's experience with the USA national team will definitely help him in the coming NBA season.

I think the FIBA experience will help Lamar, he does not lack energy, it is his focus that seems to come and go. I think he will be sharper right out of the box, he is in B-ball shape and ready to go. I think this meant an awful lot to him, not playing in any one's shadow. I know he is unselfish to a fault but it still must occasionally bother him to not be "the man". Funny thing is he is "the man" in a lot of ways. As Lamar goes, so go the Lakers quite often, he really is a game changer when he is focused. The man drives me crazy with his inconsistency but it is impossible not to love Lamar.
As a side note, I rarely post, read quit a bit though, and my favorite read is without a doubt Mamba. The man can bring tears of joy with his enthusiasm and game day poetry and roll calls. His grammar is horrid but he gets a pass with me because it comes from the heart and is sincere in every regard. I can only pray his absence is temporary and short lived.

Good morning, Fam. So how about that LO, huh? He played great during the medal round. I think it will help him this coming NBA season. He used to come in out of shape but that's not an issue anymore. I think PJ will allow him some time off during pre-season practices. The leadership experience he gained in FIBA play will certainly carry over to the Lakers. At the very least, I hope it will make him feel more accountable for his contributions to the team.

Lamar is Lamar, the consummate team player. No, he won't burn out. In the role he played, he didn't exert nearly as much energy as he does with the Lakers where he plays multiple roles on offense and defense. I would have much rather him play basketball this summer and work on his game than boxing or doing nothing. In the end, however, no effect one way or the other. He will remain the consummate inconsistent team player that he has always been, doing the dirty work, missing layups, then coming up big for us.

Unrelated to his experience with Team USA, as KB Blitz has pointed out, the acquisition of Theo Ratliff will give PJ the opportunity to keep LO as the leader of the second unit because Ratiff can start when Bynum is out. Assuming PJ does it this way, LO shouldn't have to start 38 games again this season and thereby disrupt the second unit. LO should start only when Gasol's out. This should help limit his inconsistency and keep the second unit strong.

My 2012 Team USA Olympic squad: D-Wil, CP3, Westbrook, Kobe, Wade, Roy, LeBron, Carmelo, Durant, Bosh, Odom, Howard. Lamar has earned it and it has now been proven twice that quickness and versatility is more important than power and strength in international ball (although we do not know how converting the lane to a rectangle is going to change things). You will recall that Chris Bosh was more effective than Dwight in Beijing. Bynum wants to make the team, so let's see if he can earn it!

Thanks Medina, but I cant send my profile without grammar mistakes. Thanks.

he'll be ok. that was a vacation.

This is the best summer for Odom, instead of not being in shape going into summer camp and getting hurt in the regular season, Odom is in excellent shape. His overall physique looked good in FIBA. He did well and and helped TEAM USA win. Congratulations Lamar!.


Like what I said this is probably the best Odom has been and his value is high right now. Lakers could get a CONSISTENT hungry player for him now.


Odom has always been in the trade rumors, but his value was always low, can't get anything done. Not anymore!


Lakers are stacked with talents now, so you can look at it as two ways, 1) why make a trade when you alreday have a dynamite roster? Or, 2) Lakers are 10 deep, Odom has great value this is a great oppurtunity now, we can still improve. Is MELO available?

I'm generally against Laker players playing in the Olympics and World games, due to the fatigue factor you cited. However, in Lamar's case it might turn out to be a good thing. It should make him a better leader and more accountable...which will hopefully help him focus and be more consistent.

In 2012 the Lakers will hopefully play in their 5th consecutive finals. If that's the case they will be first team to play in that many straight finals since the Russell's Celtics. The Showtime Lakers played in four consecutive (82-85).

Therefore, Kobe, Pau and LO will need lots of rest in the summer of 2012...and I hope they don't play in the 2012 Olympics. The US can win without Kobe and LO. However, it will be a tougher decision for Pau because Spain can't win it all without him.

It will help him.

Lamar has often been too deferential. Now he has an accomplishment as a true leader. This will help him this year in leading the second unit.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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

GO LAKERS!!!

LEWSTRS - sorry I just saw your profile as well. Quite the collector but I imagine the game this year was way more memorable since it was your kids first trip.

I am really hoping to bring my nieces/nephews to their first game this year. Speaking of which - anyone have access to 6 tickets? No brokers, please.....

Staples 24 - you STILL want to trade LO??? After all he's done not only for the Lakers but now for Team USA???


ROTFLMAO!!!!


You're crazy - but at least you're consistent!! :)

This could help coach K becoming the Lakers coach next season.

I'm generally against Laker players playing in the Olympics and World games, due to the fatigue factor you cited. However, in Lamar's case it might turn out to be a good thing. It should make him a better leader and more accountable...which will hopefully help him focus and be more consistent.

Posted by: LRob | September 13, 2010 at 10:08 AM

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If anything, yes, as the leader of the second unit, it should help him but when has Lamar ever been anything other than Lamar? That's why I am hoping that PJ starts Ratliff when Bynum's out and I hope Lamar doesn't start too many games this season. He's not the leader of the starting unit, so switching roles last season so often must have been somewhat confusing to him. Let's face it, other than his "lucky" 19-19 performance against the Suns and a few other games (such as his defense down the stretch in Game 7), he didn't seem to be himself in the playoffs. I think that's because of the inconsistent role that was asked of him last season. We'll see!

LRob,

That call at the end of the Bears game might have been even worse than the Radier call, because the rule book clearly says that was NOT a TD, when it 100% was.

The guy had possesion, both feet down, a knee down and a butt cheek down then dropped the ball when he used it to get up.

The idea that the catch must be made 100% thru the "folow through" as they say, is crazy. The thing that's crazy is there is no dffinitive point in which this mysterious "follow thru" ends.

What if the player catches the ball, runs into the end zone gets both feet down, then stumbles backwards for 10-15 steps while holding on theo the ball the entire time, until, maybe 13 yards outside/behind the end zone he drops the ball. Because his "follow thru" ended with a drop, I guess it's nt a TD. That's crazy, crazy.

Wes

LRob,

I know you know, but the 2000-2004 Lakers also went to 4 straight finals.
Anyway, that's a lot of games and a lot of wear and tear, so I agree and would prefer they don't play in the offseason. Also risk of injury.

Perhaps LO takes a back seat on the Lakers because of Kobe, Fish, and Pau and maybe being a 6th man somehow makes him less confident in trying to play a bigger leadership role. In addition, there are only so many players that can take a team leader type of role on one team, can't have too many chiefs.

It's hard to say how playing this summer will affect him during the season, I tend to think it probably won't. Like Bynum, his value doesn't always show up in stats. I would just like to see him improve on his focus, whatever issues he might have may be more related to that than anything physical.

Until Lamar Odom gets how important it is to be a winner he his most recent performance might be the turning point for him, but undoubtedly we've been asking this sort of mentality from him for a while, about a decade. I don't know if he has it in him to be that guy that checks himself and reacts when his team needs him to on a consistent basis, but because of the fact that the Lakers have an exceedingly more robust rotation it won't be a problem if he continous to be Lamar Odom, but it will be a welcome addition to an already great team - What I am saying is if there ever was a time for him to make the leap it is right now. He feeding his ego helping a team win something important would seem like something that would help him feel like he's "been that guy", and hopefully he learned what that role did for his team for an 82 game season and not just a 2 month tournament.

THE ODOM ENIGMA !!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Like most of bloggers, I’ve been a strong supporter of Lamar Odom and greatly appreciate his versatility and willingness to come off the bench rather than start. As I’ve said many times, next to the Kobe Bryant, our ability to cover 48 minutes of every game with a center/power forward duo of Bynum/Gasol, Bynum/Odom, or Gasol/Odom is this team’s greatest strength. The matchup wears most opponents out by the 4th quarter.
~
Having said that, I also admit to moments when I am tempted to trade Lamar Odom in order to solve our point guard dilemma, most recently when the New Orleans Hornets were looking to trade Darren Collison, whom I saw as a perfect fit for the Lakers point guard position with his ball-hawking one-on-one coverage abilities and pass first attitude running the floor as well as his range and accuracy as a 3-point shooter.
~
What most NBA fans don’t realize is that while Miami was signing LeBron James and Chris Bosh as free agents, the rest of the NBA from Oklahoma City Thunder to the Boston Celtics were copying the Lakers and going big, loading up on centers and power forwards to bulk up their front courts and better matchup versus the Lakers. It’s obvious the rest of the NBA still understands that the road to the championship still goes through LA.
~
Other teams bulking up to match the Lakers only increases Lamar’s importance as the third man in our NBA best trio of front court players. With the additions of Theo Ratliff and rookie Derrick Caracter, the Lakers front court has even been upgraded from last year. I am looking for Theo to help backup Drew at center rather than Pau to keep him fresher for the playoffs and to keep Lamar in his primary role off the bench.
~
Much like Andrew Bynum and Ron Artest, Lamar’s contributions go beyond the simple stats in the box score. In a league where rebounding and team play are the foundations upon which championships are built, it is obvious that Lamar Odom has developed his championship swagger and character. I think his play in the FIBA games and his leadership role on Team USA will help him get the recognition he deserves as a champion.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
TOM

Hey guys. Good opinions on LO. I hope the spirit of my article isn't to short shrift what he did with Team USA. I make it clear how he's going to benefit from this. But there are those short-term implications with just trying to get rest.

Anyway, a links post is up.

MM

He won the gold medal and was a big part of the team. I don't see a negative in that at all. He'll have the next two weeks off and can take it easy though training camp as far as I'm concerned.

I think that Lamar's gold medal winning experience with Team USA in Istanbul this summer will absolutely bolster his already preeminent status on this Lakers team, especially with respect to his role as the leader of this re-tooled bench mob. Sure, the extra play may well takes its toll on his body physically, but I don't think it's anything that Lamar cannot overcome in time. More to the point, I believe that the experience will prove to be a huge boost to his credibility among the coaches, veterans, and the youth movement on this team - something that cannot be easily measured or valued.

Erik,

I see your point. But two weeks doesn't suddenly erase three straight years of lots of basketball. You're right. He should get some rest these next two weeks and pace himself during training camp. But it'll be interesting to see what challenges arise

MM

Jefe101 - I agree. I think in the long-term this experience for him will be a huge boost for his career. LO has always been talented and he didn't do anything in Team USA that he hasn't done before. But consider it a good tuneup to a well-run car.

MM

I just looked, LakerTom, how are you? It was absolutely not the same without you (others may agree in a negative or positive way, I don't know, I havn't been here for a few weeks). I am glad that you are back and in form.

HL.

Humanomaly - You had a post that had a very interesting take on Odom filled with insightful analysis. But I couldn't approve it because it had profanity in it. If you'd like to rewrite it without profanity, I'll make sure it gets up.

MM

"... and he didn't do anything in Team USA that he hasn't done before. But consider it a good tuneup to a well-run car.

MM

Posted by: Mark Medina | September 13, 2010 at 11:26 AM"

Sorry Mark, but I think playing center for an extended run qualifies as a experience for LO.

In regards to his rest, watching "The Kardashians" one day, I saw that one episode where Khloe was guarding LO's privacy from the family drama, during last season's playoff run, of Kourtney and our favorite loser, Scott. She went so far as to guide her sister and newborn niece out of ther (LO/Khloe's) house/condo. Speaks volumes as to the difference between Kourtney and Kim, who would probably want a drama session all night long, the night before a playoff game. Scott, could takeover the commercial role of "the most interesting man in the world", as he does nothing of worth. but people fawn over him.

Humanomaly - That quote is taken out of context - I was referring to LO's jack of all trades role there. I mentioned in the post that it was valuable he got experience at playing center. He has played center before, but it'll help.

MM

Hopefully he won't be burned out and hurt the team; however I know this much, as sure as tax and death; he will be forever Mr. Inconsistent. You can take that to the bank.

lamar will be just like everyone else, he will show that he learned alot and ready to win his 3rd ring.

people.. we're talking about l.o. mr. potential... when does the realization that the potential will not manisfest itself into consistent production? hope is prolonged disappointment and that describes l.o. sorry, just keepin' it real. if you're going to compare the level of talent in FIBA to the NBA, well... 'nuff said. he's a good trade package that will include sasha. that's his value today. FIBA means nothing.

GO LAKERS!!

MM, gotcha, I didn't know he had played center officially before, was at at Miami???

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" he's a good trade package that will include sasha. that's his value today. FIBA means nothing.

GO LAKERS!!

Posted by: frmkt | September 13, 2010 at 01:08 PM"


Do you realize, if the Lakers were to trade Lamar, what the ramifications would be??? Go ahead, give us some trade packages, run them through the trade machine...Did you ever take Chemistry? "frmkt" does that stand for "free market"? Everyone is entitled to an opinion, and I enjoyed viewing yours.

H.

I think the team USA experience is great for both Lamar and the Lakers. Mark, maybe you have insight as to Odum's usual off season workout regimen? We know that he will be physically fit for the start of the season. Besides, I don't think they practiced much in Turkey and 20 minutes of play per game will do little harm.

The thing that I like is the insight Lamar will have from playing with some of the best young players in the game. In particular Durrant and Westbrook. You know the thoughts were running through his head about how to deal with these guys for the coming season.

I think Lamar's experience with the national team will help him this season.

For the last few seasons, Lamar has been down to 4th or 5th in the pecking order and demoted to coming off the bench (with Pau, Drew, and Ron-Ron ahead of him). I think one of the reasons Lamar has played kinda off at times is because he feels like the forgotten man at times (as opposed to 2006-2008, when he was #2 on the team, not to mention back with Miami).

With the national team, Lamar wasn't one of the big star names - Durant, Billups, Rose, Westbrook, Igoudala, and Stephen Curry all had more hype than Lamar when the group first convened. But with injuries to the top centers (especially Brook Lopez), team USA was short of big men, and Lamar got the starting role over Tyson Chandler. And he worked his butt off. Played hard defense, snagged every rebound, kicked ahead outlet passes, and scored when he was open.

But even with the starting role, Lamar wasn't a big STAR of the team. He truly came through like one in the last 3 games. I think this will encourage him to keep working hard. With Bynum's injury history, it's somewhat possible that Lamar could repeat his team USA role with the Lakers - if Bynum goes down, Lamar could step in, start, and be one of the key players in a championship. Even coming off the bench, if he works hard, he could really raise the level of the team by working hard all the time, as he did with team USA.

And what's more, I think Lamar will make the 2012 Olympic team. When you look at the body of work of the players that played this summer, Lamar contributed the second most, second only to Kevin Durant. I'd definitely say Lamar contributed more than Boozer did in 2008, and the team could use a strong rebounder like Lamar even if he's deep on the bench in 2012 (with Howard and James starting at C and PF).

Can only help. L.O. usually takes every summer off so this was an exception. It can only help by having him in shape when the season starts. Gasol and Kobe hardly ever take summers off. Kobe being Kobe and Gasol playing for his country's team. I always hear from other players that Lamar is a good guy and great teammate. The fact that Coach K started him and played him significant minutes says a lot! Durant was MVP no doubt but they dont win without Lamar. No way Lakers trade him after all the huge praise heaped on him during FIBA Worlds. He should really take a run at the 6th man award this year. He's totally capable. Candyman!!

Apoligize for jumping in the fray after only reading this L.O. blog and not having time for the posts the last few days.

I agree with MM, this should serve to help L.O., moreso than other players that might be more centerpieces (if I were the OKC Thunder I'd be more concerned with a couple young players like Durant/Westbrook though).

L.O. though, he plays with a grace, purpose in his motions, that he doesn't waste energy. He goes all out at the instant it calls for, scrambling for rebounds and loose balls, but the rest of the time he is excellent at conserving his energy and playing quick but not rushed.

I think that this will increase his quiet confidence.

I'm also so very excited for L.O., Jerry Colangelo, Coach K and the rest of Team USA. They did us all so very proud, it was an inspiration to see how hard they wanted to win, and succeeded in bringing back the gold.

But what a summer L.O. has had, quite a year, really. In the course of about 16 months Lamar has won two titles, a world championship and gotten married.

I think we all should consider how lucky we are to have a quality person & player of Lamar's caliber on the Lakers...

CONGRATULATIONS TO TEAM USA!!!!!!!!!

GO LAKERS!!!!!

MM:

Regarding a posting you were prevented from putting up because of my use of profanity, a profanity, I do not recall:

I apologize for the profanity, I did not intend to offend. I am just in a different environment from my normal. Also, I have been away from the blog for a while, because at the time I decided to leave, there was excessive personal conflicts going on, and the blog, was more weighed toward personal agenda than basketball. I am not aware of how to retrieve a blog that I have written, I assume you can e-mail it back to me and I will gladly make it acceptable to the current standards. Thank you for running a tight ship. It surely wasn't when people spent time bickering. I will be the first to admit that I go "off topic" as well, however, I do so, to gain insight into other people's reactions. I always try to touch upon the topic of the blog in all my postings. There have been tines when, yes, I have written and forgotten to address the blog topic, and I feel badly about that, I apologize for what some may feel is wasteful posting, just as I felt that people slamming each other was overly done.

HL.

LakerTom: I'm glad that we got our PG in Blake (ok, at least for a couple years, we still need a young stud for the future...) without giving up any components. The Lakers frontline, anchored by Bynum, alongside of Gasol and Odom rotating in is one of the finest trio of big-men on a team, well that I can remember.

A lot of teams have had a good two players, but not three deep at a high caliber at C/PF like the Lakers have had the past couple years.

Gotta add, Mitch did a good job keeping the Sasha trade-chip as an insurance policy. It might come in handy.

- - -

LakerPeace: If the Lakers do get Coach K, that might be the only person I'd put ahead of Brian Shaw, with D-Fish waiting in the wings as an assistant.

Am I the only one, but I generally don't want Byron Scott as future Laker coach? I think I'd prefer the second coming of Rambis over Scott...

Humanomaly - E-mail me your address at mgmedin@gmail.com and I will send you what you wrote and what changes you need to make. I'm not legally allowed to change wording of anyone's posts so you'll have to make the changes and repost it.

MM

GOOD THING

odom's never in shape right? he had some time off, got into shape for FIBA and now he's ready for camp. i don't see how this could be anything but beneficial. i think it will make him more focused

Odoms FIBA play can only help as he will be in condition coming into training camp. This will help us to fast start as he leads the second unit.
We should not trade LO at this time as he is too versatile and D Caracter not ready to take over his spot. We would lose depth at PF position and leader of second unit.

Did his right hand learn anything this summer? That's all that is important to me.

I was very impressed by Odom’s performance at the worlds. He did all the little things in the game that made a huge impact... many wouldn’t show up in the statistics: Rebound, rotations on defense, screens making timely shots, and making very smart decisions. But by at large his leadership throughout the tournament was the most valuable contribution, I remember one of the younger players saying how Lamar was telling him that the Lakers defense was so in tune that they rarely communicated on screen roll defense, that they just knew where they had to be . This morning I was reading an ESPN Truehoop article written by Bill Simmons, who I find very funny at times despite his disdain for the Lakers wrote, “Hey, if this is the FORTH-best player on the Lakers, we might not want to hand over the 2010-11 title to Miami yet.”

This expereince will not help him...it will be the talk, but that's it. By seasons end, he'll use it as an excuse for playing, as always, poorly at critical times. ODumb is quality player, but the Lakers should have done something to releive themsleves of this player last year. This may come back to bite them in the end. Don't get me wrong, he is a good player, and even better player when he shows up to play,which is only 30% of the time. The media and most fans are still in awe that someone of his size can dribble the ball full court after a rebound, get over, he doesn't do it enough and he's never consistent. He's too versatile, at doing what? Too often at critical junctions of the game he's just not there or the team protects him by going away from, hoping that will free him up for a rebound, so he can stay involved. Anyway, he has several rings now, and most think he was a big part of it, just like Fish.

Still plenty of Odom haters across Lakerville I see, like "sportswriter".2 nba championships and a world championship, is pretty impressive if you ask me. In all those championship seasons Lamar played a very big role.

I just find it funny, how Odom has been on the trading block for YEARS, and I mean YEARS, yet he hasn't been traded yet? Imagine that? We had a chance to dump Odom after the lost in Boston, but we didn't. Imagine that? And last year after the first championship from this crew; we could have just let him walk and let Miami pick him up; yet he didn't go anywhere. Imagine that?

Now on the B team of NBA players, that many thought would fall to Spain or Argentina, or Brazil. Odom is the second most important player on this team, beside Durant; and they go undefeated and win the Fiba World Championship. Imagine that? And you still have non basketball folks wanting to trade him; yet he is a player that has been only traded ONCE in his whole career. Imagine that?


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