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Caught in the Web: Lakers prepare for Portland


--The Times' Broderick Turner outlines the increased role Lakers rookie forward/center Derrick Caracter will have with the team.

--The Times' Mark Heisler notices the Lakers currently don't have any drama going on with their team.

--The Columbian's Matt Calkins extrapolates on Portland's victory over Toronto.

--The Orange County Register's Janis Carr examines Pau Gasol's willingness to play more minutes.

--The Sporting News' Sean Deveney previews the Lakers-Portland matchup.

--ESPN Los Angeles' Brian Kamenetzky breaks down the Lakers' struggles against Toronto's zone defense.

--The Daily Breeze's Elliott Teaford focuses more on Caracter.

--Fox Sports' Billy Witz explains how Kobe Bryant's been feasting on young defenders.

--The Oregonian sizes up the Lakers-Trail Blazers matchup.

--Silver Screen and Roll's DexterFishmore wonders whether the New Orleans Hornets can challenge the Lakers in the West.

--Forum Blue and Gold's Darius Soriano celebrates Lamar Odom's birthday by featuring an Odom highlight reel.

Tweet of the Day: "My kids have no respect for day light savings." -- Matt_Barnes22 (Lakers forward Matt Barnes)

Reader Comment of the Day: "Watching the Lakers defense Friday night against the Raptors should have served as prima facie evidence of how much the LA Lakers missed their starting center Andrew Bynum." -- LakerTom

Photo: Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol (16) have meshed nicely in helping Lakers win consecutive NBA titles. This season the team is almost under the radar, with media spotlight trained elsewhere. Credit: Danny Moloshok/Reuters.

Comments () | Archives (17)

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LakerTom: KUDOS on an excellent, succinct point and a well-earned Friedman! I'm happy that during this time away recovering it has served to open some eyes as to just how much the Lakers miss when Drew is out!

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justa: There's only one original, tried imitating but wasn't the same.

You know what they say though, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery... lol

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Edwin: "The best scenario that could have happened last summer, Luke should have opted to rest for this season while Mbenga is retained as the 14th player. PJ could use Mbenga for practices and also fill up some holes in banging other 7 footers, Ratliff and Caracter are small to do those job."
I love Luke, I love the qualities that he brings to the team that mostly isn't reflected on the statsheet. That being said, I thought that for a while it was possible he rested this season from what was being said going into training camp.

It seems his back hasn't been the cause of his most recent injuries - it's been other things like his hammy that he's suffered from. I thought his back was the reason he might have rested the year.

It is an interesting thought Edwin. I wonder if Mitch had seriously considered doing it. I still would like to see them use Sasha's expiring contract on a big, the Lakers already have depth at frontcourt & swingmen...

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Zaira: If everyone had the eloquence and cheerful personality you posses, the world would be a better place!


In the interest of spreading obscure links, there's a guy by the handle of dr. dreg who has a blog called 'The Secret Diary of Mitch Kupchak'. I think it's hilarious, (I think).

Hmmm... don't think the tiny url works... (typical for me). I think you can just do a search by the title.


cyber - yes it is so I thank you very much!

On another note:

I watched the Toronto game again to watch Luke specifically. He did great. Passed the ball - kept the O moving - played D - boxed out his man. Geez - you guys need to lay off if you don't know what you're talking about.

Congrats on a well deserved Friedman Award LakerTom. I think the same way.

I watched the Toronto game again to watch Luke specifically. He did great. Passed the ball - kept the O moving - played D - boxed out his man. Geez - you guys need to lay off if you don't know what you're talking about. Posted by: justanothermambafan | November 07, 2010 at 12:29 PM
WOW! Really?...REALLY?...OK!

Laker Tom - Hooray for you...getting the award on a post about Bynumite...I concur 100%...

Lakers Dynasty - The Next Generation...

#17 Coming Up!!!

Luke is a good NBA player. Not great, but good. And on this team he's a perfect fit for what they need him to do. When he's healthy, the Lakers are better.

Luke is a good NBA player. Not great, but good. And on this team he's a perfect fit for what they need him to do. When he's healthy, the Lakers are better. Posted by: justanothermambafan | November 07, 2010 at 12:34 PM
Now I can go along with that!

What an excellent, thoughtful insight justa..

sarcasm font..

Reading the Janis Carr article above, I believe Pau deserves a lot more credit than we give him:
“I mean, I’m playing a lot of minutes and that’s the reality,” Gasol said. “I don’t know if I wished I played any less. It is what it is, I’m playing a lot of minutes and that’s all.
“I’m playing well, so I just have to make sure I take care of my body the days that we don’t play, and continue to work hard and play well.”

He's not whining about minutes, he's not complaining about his workload. He just goes out and plays. Even when he's summoned off the bench with a few minutes left of garbage time, with the game seemingly out of reach, after he's stiffened up from being out so long - he doesn't complain. Instead, he just says that he follows Phil's orders in the postgame interview.

BUT L.O. deserves his props too! From playing into mid-June winning a ring to outplaying everyone not named Durant in the FIBA's, coming to camp and continuing his stellar form, which has carried over right into the season. Here is a great quote from the top-10 MVP candidates list on (which he MOST DESERVEDLY is on):

"We thought Nowitzki was shooting sharply, until we realized that Odom -- 35-of-50 for 70 percent -- is the first NBA player to do that through the season's first five games since Charles Barkley went 43-of-60 to open 1991-92. And Odom's deadeye start includes 8-of-10 from 3-point range -- the Chuckster went 32-of-137 (23.4 percent) from the arc that season. "

Don't say it enough, so I will here:




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justa: "Luke is a good NBA player. Not great, but good. And on this team he's a perfect fit for what they need him to do. When he's healthy, the Lakers are better."
I think that hits the perfect tone for what Luke does, very well said! Maybe we will see that quote again as tomorrow's Friedman winner...



MM got it right. Your comment is about the most simple and blatantly obvious observation that any Lakers or NBA fan can make, but sometimes it is the simple things that are the most profound.

Boston is at Thunder tonight...Here a good test to see if the Thunder are ready for prime time...

Great post Laker Tom - pretty much sums things up at the moment. Not sure where Mark Heisler was going with his piece - it was almost as if to say that complete harmony isn't necessarily in the cards and a virtual impossibility with this team in the long run. I couldn't disagree more.

Congrats LakerTom on the Friedman!

Right now, the starters(minus Ron-Ron) look very uninterested in playing any semblence of D. I think they are truly being overconfident in that they can turn the switch on their D and win any game. I'm sure this will cause at least a few losses before Bynum gets back. Hopefully, they will learn their lesson after the first loss and bounce back with a renewed sence of urgency. Until, I expect more of the same.

Hopefully tonight won't be that night because Portland seems to have had out number the past few years.

Regarding the Mbenga rumour that Phil didn't like him- can anyone lend any truth to this at all or can we just move on?

@MM… Thanks for the Friedman. Must have been a slow day. LOL! Love how you’ve gotten more and more comfortable with stating your highly respected opinion. Too often blog moderators try to walk the middle so much that when they do stake out a position, they don’t have the credibility. You do a great job balancing being the moderator as well as a journalist who knows his stuff and is not afraid to speak up. Thanks also to Lewsters, Jefe101, Mclyne, Mamba, JAMF, and others for your congratulations. Best of all, our RCOD namesake himself is back home, recovering, and ready to rock-and-roll for another 3-peat.
@CCX… Thanks for the kind words. Glad to see you’ve gotten your home back from the in-law. Let me tell you though that vacations are nothing. What you have to worry about is whether the in-law has properly arranged their own retirement plans. In our case, we ended up with Mrs. LakerTom’s mother living 5 of her last 7 years alive in our home until it got so bad we had to move her where she could get 24/7 care. Believe me, those were the toughest days of both my and Mrs. LakerTom’s lives. The BEST legacy we can leave our children is to not burden them when we can no longer take care of ourselves.



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