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The Lakers need to make rest for Pau Gasol a top priority

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Pau Gasol's performances in the Lakers past four losses, including the team's 109-99 loss Wednesday to the Houston Rockets, show he's drained. His trip to the locker room to get his hamstring looked at reveals the heavy playing time is leaving himself vulnerable. And his admission afterward that he's tired shows that he might not have it in him anymore to keep pushing through.

"What's my concern? My concern is that it doesn't get better, or that it gets worse and it becomes a problem," Gasol told reporters, including The Times' Broderick Turner. "Then we'll really have a problem."

That's the first red flag Gasol has shown since logging a team-leading 39.4 minutes per game this season, partly because Andrew Bynum is rehabbing his surgically repaired right knee. In other cases, Gasol has spoken diplomatically about his role and offered zero complaints about his increased responsibility.

I don't take Gasol's latest comments as him lamenting his role as much as him worrying about his long-term health. This isn't a matter of Gasol just having to fight through it. Since logging a statistically perfect stat line of 28 points on 10 of 10 shooting and eight of eight from the free-throw line, Gasol has shot 24 of 60 (40%) in the past five games, shot above 50% in only one of those contests, and has scored below 20 points in four of the five.

These performances can't solely correlate with the opposition's double teams and the heavier focus on Gasol in the lane. This strongly points to the law of diminishing returns; Gasol's willingness to push through hasn't yielded the same production he had provided earlier this season. Lakers Coach Phil Jackson has voiced these concerns quite vocally since last week, but the game plan has still remained the same. Among the variables in all this are the Lakers' unwillingness to acquire a backup center, the team's desire for Bynum to return completely healthy, and Derrick Caracter's inexperience. I had gone through in detail the scenarios that would enable more rest for Gasol, but that was more rooted in the fact that the Lakers would also want to win the game.

But it's gotten to the point where Jackson and the Lakers can't simply hope Gasol ran ride it out until Bynum returns. The Lakers may not want to pay at least $70,000 in player salary and luxury taxes to acquire a backup center until Bynum returns, but that might be the price they need to pay to ensure Gasol's long-term health. Jackson may be reluctant to play Caracter more minutes or go toward a more perimeter-oriented lineup because it gives the Lakers less of a chance to end their four-game losing streak. But the latest approach hasn't been working. And with Jackson always measuring  how the Lakers look in April and May more than in November and December, resting Gasol might be necessary to ensure that long-term success.

-- Mark Medina

Twitter.com/latmedina

E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Photo: Lakers center Pau Gasol, left, is fouled by Memphis center Hasheem Thabeet as he tries to put up a shot during the second half of the Lakers' 98-96 loss Tuesday. Credit: Nikki Boertman / Reuters

 
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MM - are you planning on having a chat during the Big Game tonight?

WHAT BIG GAME??????

OK be that way!! *sigh* :)

We're losing with Gasol playing fatigued. What difference would it make if DC gets some minutes then? Other than Pau not getting really hurt, I mean. And, you know, DC getting some valuable PT....

This should be end of all pau for MVP talks
Some alpha male he is.
This should be the nail in the coffin for ricky.

R.I.P
ricky from espana
Beloved laker blogger
2009-1010

yello - LOL - that's cold! Funny as hell - but cold nonetheless!

Puddle,


"3) Memphis was another team the Lakers should have beaten, but again, it was another loss by a tiny margin, again on the road against a Grizzlies team that had won 4 straight at home. This one was a bit more worrisome because the Grizzlies aren't exactly a powerhouse and the Lakers sleepwalked through this one too, but if you can sleepwalk through a game on the road against a possible playoff team and still have a chance to win it on the last possession, it's not the worst thing ever."


and KOBE was match up against a ROOKIE from GRIZZLIES. Rookie!
Kobe shoudl have locked up Henry and made him make rookie mistakes, on top of that Kobe shoudl have sccored 50 ponits between a rookie and an undersized Mayo guarding him. But no, Henry, who? went off and played very well. What's up with that KOBEMAN?


LAKERS CAN WIN another 8-0 without Bynum, right KOBE? C'mon Kobe best player in the planet, best skilled big man in Gasol, most versatile player in Odom, lockdwon defender in Artest, Fish the clutch, Barnes, Blake and Brpown the killer B's!!!! C'mon Kobe 4 straight losses for the most talented team in the NBA, what's wrong? Right the ship, create the TEAM CHEMISTRY KOBEMAN!!!!


Cmon kobe!!! Make Odom an all-star!!! make Gasol an MVP!!! You know you can do it if you want these two players to be BIGGER than they are. MAKE THEM BETTER KOBE!!! Drive the ball and give it to Gasol, give Odom some space, dish it to D-fish, get Artest involve in offense. You're the MAN.

Does anyone know who the centers on the market are?

Go Lakers!

@MAMBA, ROCKY, EDWIN, 63 FOOTER, MCLYNE, & 888… Thanks for the congrats and kind words.
…………………….

@JAMF…. Where did all this bunny stuff come from. At first, I thought everybody was just talking about Pau’s weenie shots but it now looks like bunny lovers coming out to challenge cat and dog lovers? I used to raise rabbits as well as hunt for them when I lived in the country as small boy. Trust me, cats and dogs have personalities while rabbits are just content to just be passive.

It’s kind of like the blog. If you’re a poster, then you’re either a cat or dog (take your pick although who would want to be a dog, LOL. Cool cat, yes). If you’re just a reader, then likely you’re just a bunny, maybe with lucky feet or maybe a hip-hop artist, but still in the end a bunny.
…………………..

TOM

Miami v. Clev is a Big Game?

Was that sarcasm Justa?

Gasol won't be playing so many minutes if KOBE has been playing the right way beating teams by 20pts by 4th qrter, like the start of 8-0. Gasol can get plenty of rest.

Oh yeah speaking of miami vs clev

Expect another first class choke job by Lecrab tonight

With all the pressure his jumpers will most definitely be off the mark so look for his Lecrabs famous 3step: lower your shoulders, charge the lane, and pray for a whistle!

Laker Tom - I explained the "bunny love" in the previous thread, but here it is again justa for you :)

Cali - there's a commercial that airs here about a new hotel/resort in Vegas. Their slogan is something like "just the right amount of bad". They go back and forth between showing people doing "bad" things, and really cute kittens & bunnies over-running the hotel. Then a woman picks up just one of the bunnies and puts it outside. It's weird but pretty funny.

Then during the games, the guys have been missing those little "bunnies" close to the rim.

Put the 2 together, and me & 63 started in with the "OH NOOOOOO - NOT THE BUNNIES!!!" Then Mamba24 picked it up and now it's justa our "schtick". LOL!

_____________________


MGeezy - it's not a big game? I'm really looking forward to the princess self-destructing again. I think something may happen tonight when she sees West. Or looks for her powder and there isn't any... :)

Justa, OK you've convinced me, it's a Big Game, obv not for the normal reasons.

Kittens>Bunnies

Why isn't there a better version of Albert King's Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody's Home on YouTube?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FG9Pb0nqmwY

Sure we can have a live chat at 5 p.m.

Also, I'll fill in more details once I get them. But Mike Bresnahan will be having a live chat tomorrow at 1 p.m. Bring your questions.

pau is playing out of position, and kobe is going back to his non-championship ways

Mamba24,

I hoped you saved me a seat on the Bandwagon. I'm actually kinda having fun, I mean, we go through this stuff every season. Well, I don't like it much, but it's not something we shouldn't be used to. We'll be fine, just need to be healthy and rested for the Playoffs. That all being said, I think perhaps PJ should alter the rotation and starting group, just perhaps. Lakers!!

I agree with a few of the posters above. Kobe is not playing efficiently the last week or two ie. poor feild goal percentage, bad possesions, etc. This puts more pressure on Pau to play more minutes at a time when they are thin up-front already. Kobe needs to become facillitator more often and Jackson needs to give Caracter more minutes right now out of necessity and it could give him some great experience for later in the season.

@LakerTom:

"Where did all this bunny stuff come from. At first, I thought everybody was just talking about Pau’s weenie shots but it now looks like bunny lovers coming out to challenge cat and dog lovers? I used to raise rabbits as well as hunt for them when I lived in the country as small boy. Trust me, cats and dogs have personalities while rabbits are just content to just be passive. "

Let me interject if you will. I think it was after our second loss in this stretch that I had noticed that as the game went on, Kobe went from can't miss to can't hit in the course of one game (which, on that day, seemed impossible a feat to see duplicated). I mentioned how he was hitting everything, then suddenly was missing layup after layup after layup.

Justa instantly dubbed the layups, "Bunnies". But, honestly, I think it was Snaq who originally called shots around the hoop, "Bunnies"

Lo and behold! We have seen Kobe miss more and more layups near the end of the next two games, including three more last night. Now, I wish I never mentioned them, they seem to be multiplying out of control...

--FEARless

DJ You may be having fun, but your millions of fans sitting on pins and needles waiting for that contract to get done aren't! Now tell The Yankees that they either sign you to whatever you want or we will have Ron Ron And Barnes take over the negotiations for you. They ought to move their @sses!!! LOL!
*
*
*
*___________________________________________________________________*
I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF – BANDWAGON
*___________________________________________________________________*
(01) JON K – OWNER - I'm not worried. Just pissed off.
(02) utzworld THE BANNER HOLDER - CHAPLAIN - Not worried either. Pissed off too.
(03) LAKERTOM – DRIVER1 -we all know that there is still a very long way to go and this team has
too much talent, character, and experience not to right the ship and be right there in the hunt for
their 3rd consecutive NBA championship. The 76-6 Championship Bandwagon is still rolling strong
even though the road and ride are a little bumpy and crunchy as the wheels roll over the rats,
trolls, and fairweather fans who’ve jumped ship.


(36) D(EREK) J(ETER) - I'm actually kinda having fun, I mean, we go through this stuff every season. Well, I don't like it much, but it's not something we shouldn't be used to. We'll be fine, just need to be healthy and rested for the Playoffs. That all being said, I think perhaps PJ should alter the rotation and starting group, just perhaps. Lakers!!

Oh, yeah! Mamba, you know this is the bandwagon for me. The sky is not falling. I repeat: The sky is not falling!

--FEARless

Lo and behold! We have seen Kobe miss more and more layups near the end of the next two games, including three more last night. Now, I wish I never mentioned them, they seem to be multiplying out of control...Posted by: FEARless | December 02, 2010 at 12:03 PM
*
LOL, Very good!! Good thing we didn't call them Nutless Monkeys it's no telling what effect that would have had on Kobe's shot!!

What's all this talk bout bunnies? Only bunnies I have any interest in are playboy bunnies ;-)

Laker Tom - (take your pick although who would want to be a dog, LOL. Cool cat, yes)
===

Evidently you didn't click on the link in my post on the previous thread.
Show me a cat like that, cool or not cool.

What's all this talk bout bunnies? Only bunnies I have any interest in are playboy bunnies ;-) Posted by: yellofever | December 02, 2010 at 12:08 PM
*
BYNUM!!! IS THAT YOU!!!!

*___________________________________________________________________*
I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF – BANDWAGON
*___________________________________________________________________*
(01) utzworld THE BANNER HOLDER - Not worried either. Pissed off too.
(02) JON K – OWNER - I'm not worried. Just pissed off.
(03) LAKERTOM – DRIVER1 -we all know that there is still a very long way to go and this team has
too much talent, character, and experience not to right the ship and be right there in the hunt for
their 3rd consecutive NBA championship. The 76-6 Championship Bandwagon is still rolling strong
even though the road and ride are a little bumpy and crunchy as the wheels roll over the rats,
trolls, and fairweather fans who’ve jumped ship.


(36) D(EREK) J(ETER) - I'm actually kinda having fun, I mean, we go through this stuff every season. Well, I don't like it much, but it's not something we shouldn't be used to. We'll be fine, just need to be healthy and rested for the Playoffs. That all being said, I think perhaps PJ should alter the rotation and starting group, just perhaps. Lakers!!
(37) FEARLESS - Oh, yeah! Y ou know this is the bandwagon for me. The sky is not falling. I repeat: The sky is not falling!

Please add DBDH to the current bandwagon on this basis alone:

"I'm mad as hell, and I'm not gonna take it anymore! RAWR!"

We better win soon, because I may blow a gasket soon.


[dbdh]

Mamba

Wow how did you know I'm bynum posing under yellofevers tag? Dude this is unreal but I'm totally busy right now in the middle of my call of duty game.. I just got promoted to sergeant and got handed a new mission to suppress a coup'detat uprising by russian militants.. This game is so cool I wish u can join me.. I've been logged on for last 20 hours and am so totally hooked... Trainers are buggin me about rehab but this is like off the hook.. This is fo shizzle to the dizzle.. Catch u on the flip side mamba. Peace out!

Sincerely,
Bynum

I think Phil had an interesting comment on playing DC more - he said something to the effect of not wanting to set him up to fail. I guess he thought that if DC played more at his current level of understanding of the triangle, maybe the mistakes he would make would be ingrained and he wouldn't be given a true change to succeed. Sounds deep, but not sure it has merit - what better way to learn than from your mistakes? If there's a play DC more bandwagon, I'm on it. Pau playing hurt or tired (but come on, I'm a huge Pau supporter, but he gets payed millions to be in shape for these games - I gotta think it's injury over fatigue) is worse for us in the long run than giving DC some more minutes.

Pau needs rest?
Who else needs rest?
The solution is simple.
Rest Pau, rest Kobe, rest Ron. Who else needs rest?
Play the bench heavy minutes and whatever happens happens.
If the Lakers are going to lose anyway, why risk injury to tired players, just rest them all.

Wow how did you know I'm bynum posing under yellofevers tag? Dude this is unreal but I'm totally busy right now in the middle of my call of duty game.. I just got promoted to sergeant and got handed a new mission to suppress a coup'detat uprising by russian militants.. This game is so cool I wish u can join me.. I've been logged on for last 20 hours and am so totally hooked... Trainers are buggin me about rehab but this is like off the hook.. This is fo shizzle to the dizzle.. Catch u on the flip side mamba. Peace out! Sincerely, Bynum Posted by: yellofever | December 02, 2010 at 12:21 PM
*
LMAO!! STOP THIS I SAY!!!!

Rest for Pau a top priority, That is too funny.

Please 20 games in, in this young season after a summer off.
Only playing 2 minutes more a game than last season, PSH PLEASE!

How about rest for Kobe and his knee? The teams REAL MVP (not Pau)
The teams REAL DEFENSIVE STOPPER (not Artest)
The teams REAL HEART and SOUL (not fisher)

Tired is just an excuse for being scared.

Please add DBDH to the current bandwagon on this basis alone:
"I'm mad as hell, and I'm not gonna take it anymore! RAWR!"
We better win soon, because I may blow a gasket soon.Posted by: Don't Blame Del Harris! | December 02, 2010 at 12:17 PM
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LMAO!! You know I'd make a million if I opened up my own Dr. Fattys' Lakerholoic Tonic stand. Now DBDH run, run as fast as you can to your nearest pharmacy and get you some NOW! And when you purchase it don't wait till you get home. I want you to open it right there and take a big swig. SWEET JESSUS, man for the love of God hurry!!!

I know people won't like this thought, but with all the hate around LeBron tonight, it would be cold blooded if Lebron were to stick it to Cleveland with one of his vintage performances. Like a 45 pt 15 rebound 10 assist type game.

It's going to be real interesting to see how Lebron handles himself tonight.

Go Lakers!

@LakerFanInCowTown, Sounds good to me. Why not play him?

Rest for Pau a top priority, That is too funny. Please 20 games in, in this young season after a summer off. Only playing 2 minutes more a game than last season, PSH PLEASE!
How about rest for Kobe and his knee? The teams REAL MVP (not Pau) The teams REAL DEFENSIVE STOPPER (not Artest)
The teams REAL HEART and SOUL (not fisher) Tired is just an excuse for being scared. Posted by: Magia32 | December 02, 2010 at 12:30 PM
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WOW!!! yes I have to say it...OUT FREAKIN STANDING SIR!!!!

Rocky,

Hopefully something like this happens tonight to lebron

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bSlffFbJ-Rs

After seeing Gasol getting worn down, and injuring his hamstring, I wonder if
Bynum still thinks he got the surgery at the right time. Never mind, he probably still does.

Gasol is playing major minutes against centers every night, and it was inevitable that he would eventually wear down. Playing tired leaves one vulnerable to injuries, and lo and behold, Gasol injured his hamstring. If Gasol's injury is serious, I will blame Bynum. His decision to have his surgery FORTY ONE days after the season has put an unfair amount of burden on his teammates. Now Gasol is gassed, and may possibly miss some games. Thanks a lot Bynum.

Pau is injured and when this happens Lakers loss games. That is all.

Please add me to the "I'm not worried...maybe a tad pissed off" bandwagon. I also agree with the poster(s) that decry Kobe's performances of late as much as Pau's - both have been struggling, at the same time, and that's why we're losing. It's pretty unprecedented that these two are concurrently underperforming.
Part of Kobe's job is to be the catalyst for this team correctly running its offense, as well as communicating and rotating on defense, and he's been failing at both ends of that job as of late. It'll get fixed because Kobe can and will make that adjustment.
Not much can be done about Pau being extended the way he has been, playing out of position, until Andrew Bynum gets back - that's just the way it is.
Once Bynum gets back and Phil gets a chance to work his triumverate of bigs rotation, the planets will become re-aligned and all will be well - that will be the time to truly evaluate this team.
I am soooooo not worried.
I'm actually kinda looking forward to see how this team responds to the somewhat unprecedented test of adversity. This is character building time.

Rest for Pau a top priority, That is too funny.

Please 20 games in, in this young season after a summer off.
Only playing 2 minutes more a game than last season, PSH PLEASE!

How about rest for Kobe and his knee? The teams REAL MVP (not Pau)
The teams REAL DEFENSIVE STOPPER (not Artest)
The teams REAL HEART and SOUL (not fisher)

Tired is just an excuse for being scared.

Posted by: Magia32 | December 02, 2010 at 12:30 PM

DUDE....DUDE What the Hell you SMOKING?(whale $hit) Kobe is playing SAD, he's part of the PROBLEMS. Justs not as bad as Fish, and Phil do know how to check him.

Tonight’s game that features LeBron and the Heat finally playing in Cleveland should be very interesting. There has been a fan chant sheet circulating around Cleveland that should really provide some great reactions, especially when they start chanting “De-Lon-Te,” in celebration of the still unconfirmed rumors that Delonte West had an affair with LeBron’s mom Gloria. Here is a link to the chant sheet should you wish to join in tonight while watching the game:

http://cavschants.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/cavs-chants-x-laugh-at-lebron-pdf1.pdf

While fascinating and disgusting at the same time, there has been considerable speculation from analysts like Colin Cowherd and Bill Simmons that LeBron was angry at his Cleveland teammates because he felt like he was the last to hear the news and that is why he dumped on Cleveland and definitely decided not to take a chance on New York because of their voracious media’s attitude. Frankly, if true, who could really blame LeBron for wanting off that team and not wanting to go to New York, where the media would have had a field day with the story and made life very tough. And if true, I for one have to feel sorry for LeBron. A billion dollars is not worth this kind of ish.
…………………………

TOM

Good afternoon,


LakerTom's assessment of the Pau Gasol minutes saga was quite astute, he's barely playing more than last year. I know two minutes of basketball takes more of a toll than an extra two minutes of jump rope or four square and if these extra minutes here and there are contributing to his hamstring problem (I can't see why it wouldn't) than something has to give:

A) Caracter, whether anyone thinks he is 'ready' or not, has to play more. JAMF was spot on when she pointed out that we're already losing without him playing. He'll have to learn on the fly and it would be better for him to have the small types of success that he can achieve in smaller spurts of more regulated PT...but if Gasol goes down we're in serious trouble.


B) Lamar has to play the 5 and either Ron, Caracter, or Luke has to play the 4. Also not ideal, but Ron is strong enough to bang with 4s (although he misses tips a lot due to being the shorter player on the box), Caracter is a natural 4 and Luke is baig enough and smart enough to hold down the fort for a few minutes in each half.

C) We nees to hire Don Nelson as an assistant coach and have him implement some Nelly Ball schemes so we can play Blake, Fisher, Brown, Kobe and Barnes. Fisher would obviously play at center.


Alright, I was joking on that last one. Two things hit me this morning while making breakfast burritos in preparation for work: We miss DJ Mbnega. His hustle, his weird jumper, his tacos, and his knowledge of our schemes on boh ends of the floor. The other was that Ron Artest hasn't done anything to his hair this season...it might be time.

Jamie / Tom,

Yes, Pau is 'only' playing two and a half minutes more per game this season, but last season, most of his minutes were at PF. This season, he's been playing center, which is obviously more taxing physically. Pau is a thin and lanky natural PF, and playing close to 40 minutes against centers every night will naturally wear him down. He's been playing on fumes for a week now.

Kobe is playing SAD, he's part of the PROBLEMS.

Posted by: JUSTA HATER | December 02, 2010 at 01:04 PM

Exactly. Kobe is the one who really is tired, really playing hurt. And still you don't hear him or anyone bring up the tired or hurt excuse.

A 30% Kobe on the court is what allows Pau to be so effective out there. Without Kobe, Pau becomes Memphis Pau again.

I have 1 thing to say:

I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF!!!!!!!!!!!!

Cheers.

actually, pau isn't fatigued but is fed up with kobe hogging the ball. kobe need to facilitate his team rather than shooting the ball with great difficulty. bottom line, pass the ball and find open spot.
'nuff said about pau.

Seriously, fatigue causes injuries. What happens if Pau gets hurt soon AND WE HAVE NO CENTER AND/OR BYNUM COMES BACK AND IS FORCED TO PLAY MAJOR MINUTES BEFORE HE GETS IN SHAPE AND HURTS HIMSELF AGAIN?!?!?!?!?-
-
Mitch, put something in Dr. Buss' drink and have him sign a 10-day contract for Paul Davis NOW!!!!!
-
This is getting ridiculous.
-
What do we play for? RINGS!!!
-
Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.
-
GO LAKERS!!!!

@LAKER TRUTH… “Yes, Pau is 'only' playing two and a half minutes more per game this season, but last season, most of his minutes were at PF. This season, he's been playing center, which is obviously more taxing physically. Pau is a thin and lanky natural PF, and playing close to 40 minutes against centers every night will naturally wear him down. He's been playing on fumes for a week now.”

You make a very valid point, LT, with which I agree. Hopefully, we will give the Spaniard more rest. I would even support signing another big body if there was somebody out there who could really help. Bottom line, this should stop the nonsense that Pau is a better center than Drew or that he is as or more valuable than Kobe Bryant. This is Kobe’s team and everybody else is a role player including Pau, Drew, and anybody else. Remembering back to last year
……………………..

TOM

LakerTom: Congrats on your well-deserved recognition. The quality of your posts is so consistently high that many go overlooked for RCOTD. For that reason you are much like our Jerry Sloan, who may be the best coach in basketball (outside of our own PJ) but who so regularly coaches at a high level he goes without COTY awards. A great comment, as usual.

- - -

I tend to agree with LakerTom, Pau's minutes are only up about 2mpg. Not a whole lot, really. He also had the summer off when he usually plays for the Spanish team.

I don't know if there is a mental fatigue just because it's his perception that he's had to shoulder a bigger burden with AB out.

Perhaps all of those PJ jabs are beginning to take a toll on his psyche. I know he's one of PJ's favorite targets, I think Pau is Phil's personal walking dart board at times.

Maybe it's early-season disinterest, something that seems to be happening on a wider scale outside the newcomers. This team has gone to three-straight Finals.

They have revved their engine a couple of times early-season, enough to see that they're still a Ferrari (a 12-cylinder, right 63? :) and don't need to drag-race whichever honda, toyota and chevy that crosses their path. However, they still gotta kick it into a higher gear to beat these upstarts.

Pau does seem slowed, so soreness and a hammy strain are likely taking a toll on his game.

Most likely, it is that Pau is showing that he is ill-suited as a long-term center. He simply isn't a physical, low-post presence. He does as he's told, he's a good soldier, but with the Lakers in a bind with Ratliff out and like MM has said no true center on the lineup, he's gotta slide over a position.

Am I worried? No. This is a team that was getting a lot of production from the Killer B's, which hid some of the problems that have been ongoing with the starters. Now, as the bench's shooting percentages and game comes back to earth, the problems are showing themselves.

Phil is our jockey, and has been riding this horse hard, sometimes he needs to let up and play the rooks and backups longer stretches. This is a proven horse, a champion, it doesn't need to be ridden hard in every race. Heck, we've been losing these games anyways, why not give the bench and rooks more time?

Definitely not time to panic because of a sore hammy and some fatigue. Knock on wood, we haven't suffered a major injury (outside of Ratliff tendinitis - double up on those minerals, man!) and these early-season losses may be upsetting, but nothing more.

Despite what many here on the blog think, championships are won in May/June, not November/December. Honestly, the Lakers only have one team that is a true competitor, the Celtics, so much like the Cav's of the last couple years, killing themselves in the regular season to win overall HCA really didn't matter. We had a better record than Boston, so we had that game 7 at home. But, looking at the standings anytime before the all-star break is pretty pointless, after that it's only mildly important.

We still have the cavalry coming, the finest center in the Western Conference. Bynum is a comin', meaning Pau moves back to his natural position, L.O. comes off the bench and solidifies the second unit, interior defense is upgraded in a big-way, minutes for the bigs go down and an easier time at the offensive end.

I still think that the biggest overall ailment is disinterest. The season isn't even 1/4 over and the sky isn't falling, all that has happened is the losses has the trolls scurrying out from under their rocks and hiding places...

HURRY! SOMEONE GET THE RAT TRAPS AND SPRAY SOME RAID!!!!!


GO LAKERS!!!!!!

Congrats LakerTom on RCOTD. It's a good day when that happens.

Cheers - PLG

Laker Tom,
-
Congratulations on the Rick Friedman Award.
-
What do we play for? RINGS!!!
-
Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.
-
GO LAKERS!!!

all this talk about pau's minutes belies the position he is playing those at.because he is not as big as many of the players he is up against, it will be a given for any 5's he plays to get as physical as possible.the lakers are really in a quandry, and no help in sight until drew comes back in, what is it april now?

Gasol's fatigue doesn't just come from playing more minutes this season. I believe it's wear and tear starting from 2008 season. He played 3 heavy NBA seasons games including 3 Finals (100+ games each of last 3 seasons) and other Euro games. As I stated previously, the Lakers other core players played equivalent of 4 seasons games in last 3 yrs. Those are lots of games. That's why we really don't know when their fatigue would show up. This season would be their 4th straight Finals appearance(I hope), and I don't know if any team has achieved that since 82 regular season games began.

*___________________________________________________________________*
I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF – BANDWAGON
*___________________________________________________________________*
(01) utzworld THE BANNER HOLDER - Not worried either. Pissed off too.
(02) JON K – OWNER - I'm not worried. Just pissed off.
(03) LAKERTOM – DRIVER1 -we all know that there is still a very long way to go and this team has
too much talent, character, and experience not to right the ship and be right there in the hunt for
their 3rd consecutive NBA championship. The 76-6 Championship Bandwagon is still rolling strong
even though the road and ride are a little bumpy and crunchy as the wheels roll over the rats,
trolls, and fairweather fans who’ve jumped ship.


(37) FEARLESS - Oh, yeah! Y ou know this is the bandwagon for me. The sky is not falling. I repeat: The sky is not falling!
(38) MAGIC PHIL - I have 1 thing to say: I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Dodgers became AWFUL after the All Star break, the Kings were superb in the beginning and became AWFUL after 15 games or so, the Clippers is always AWFUL, and now the Lakers is so AWFUL to watch that they should change their name to LAPPERS. No good reason to live in LA except the weather. UGHHH!

*___________________________________________________________________*
I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF – BANDWAGON
*___________________________________________________________________*
(01) JON K – OWNER - I'm not worried. Just pissed off.
(02) utzworld THE BANNER HOLDER – CHAPLAIN - Not worried either. Pissed off too.
(03) LAKERTOM – DRIVER1 -we all know that there is still a very long way to go and this team has
too much talent, character, and experience not to right the ship and be right there in the hunt for
their 3rd consecutive NBA championship. The 76-6 Championship Bandwagon is still rolling strong
even though the road and ride are a little bumpy and crunchy as the wheels roll over the rats,
trolls, and fairweather fans who’ve jumped ship.

(39) JEFE101 -Please add me to the "I'm not worried...maybe a tad pissed off" bandwagon. I also agree with the poster(s) that decry Kobe's performances of late as much as Pau's - both have been struggling, at the same time, and that's why we're losing. It's pretty unprecedented that these two are concurrently underperforming. Part of Kobe's job is to be the catalyst for this team correctly running its offense, as well as communicating and rotating on defense, and he's been failing at both ends of that job as of late. It'll get fixed because Kobe can and will make that adjustment. Not much can be done about Pau being extended the way he has been, playing out of position, until Andrew Bynum gets back - that's just the way it is. Once Bynum gets back and Phil gets a chance to work his triumverate of bigs rotation, the planets will become re-aligned and all will be well - that will be the time to truly evaluate this team. I am soooooo not worried.

How many people can you fit inside of a LeBron James love triangle?

http://hoopstopia.com/tampering-lebron-james/

The Dodgers became AWFUL after the All Star break, the Kings were superb in the beginning and became AWFUL after 15 games or so, the Clippers is always AWFUL, and now the Lakers is so AWFUL to watch that they should change their name to LAPPERS. No good reason to live in LA except the weather. UGHHH!

The Lakers must sign a center now...Milwaukee just signed Brian Skinner. Is Josh Boon or Rasho Nesterovic available? What happened to Josh Voskuhl?

*___________________________________________________________________*
I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF – BANDWAGON
*___________________________________________________________________*
(01) JON K – OWNER - I'm not worried. Just pissed off.
(02) utzworld THE BANNER HOLDER – CHAPLAIN - Not worried either. Pissed off too.
(03) LAKERTOM – DRIVER1 -we all know that there is still a very long way to go and this team has
too much talent, character, and experience not to right the ship and be right there in the hunt for
their 3rd consecutive NBA championship. The 76-6 Championship Bandwagon is still rolling strong
even though the road and ride are a little bumpy and crunchy as the wheels roll over the rats,
trolls, and fairweather fans who’ve jumped ship.
(04) JAMIE SWEET – DRIVER2 - I'm not freaking out, this team deserves our support
in light of it's back-to-back ways; the troubling thing is the quality of team we're losing to.
.500-ish teams should be a nuisance and we're letting them hang around and feel like they can
ball with us. It'll happen, we'll get our focus and moxie back, guys who are missing easy shots
will hit them, Kobe'll make a couple more 36 foot shots, Pau will shoot more than 8 times.
(05) JUSTANOTHERMAMBAFAN – RIDING SHOTGUN1 - I'm not worried. I'm not even pissed off anymore. As much as I hate this losing streak, I have to believe it's an anomaly. This team is just too
good for this to become a season-long pattern. Let's give our guys the benefit of the doubt and believe
they'll right the ship. Does anyone really believe that these guys don't want to win? That they don't want
to 3-peat? That they don't know what it will take? Exactly. 'Nuf said.
(06) MAMBA24 – RIDING SHOTGUN2 – Worried? Nope. Embarrased? Yep!!!!!!!!!
(07) FAN OF THE MAMBA – SECURITY -
(08) SEGEBOY/TALIQ – THE SHERRIFF - Oh well ... better 2 lose games in November than June
Still @ this rate ... I'm gonna have 2 start paying a therapist again for my laker blues ...
(09) LONGTIMELAKERFAN – RIDING SHOTGUN - They're still gelling as a team, same as
Miami. And by June, this Lakers squad might be firing on all cylinders. But in their current
state, the Lakers defense isn't nearly as good as last year's squad or the year before's.
(10) APPOLO C. VERMONT – SECURITY - ..Go Lakers!!!!!3 peat and beyond...
(11) HUGO BOSS - Get the losing streak over with now rather than later.
(12) CYBERCOSMIX - The Lakers gotta snap outta the funk they're in. They look a step
slow and not in sync. Am I worried? No. This is a team that was getting a lot of production from the
Killer B's, which hid some of the problems that have been ongoing with the starters. Now, as the bench's
shooting percentages and game comes back to earth, the problems are showing themselves.
(13) ISLAND PRIEST - This may be a blessing in disguise because I was wary of my fellow Laker
fans who were proclaiming an automatic 3 peat. Maybe now we can concentrate in getting
through the regular season. Phil should not make excuse for Gasol/Odom. They are getting paid
millions of dollars and when duty calls you gats to MAN the %^*( UP!! I personally work 9 hours
a day and spend couple hours in the gym 4 times a week. So playing 40 minutes a game is no big
deal. Gasoft get your ass in that game and perform man.
(14) VMAN"support your team" doesn't mean shrug off the worst losing streak since Pau landed as
a "we got this". This is frustratin' stuff and if ya can't vent here, where can ya vent? isay screeeaaaam.
Let it out or before it boils over! arrrrrrrrrrgh! Miami won, San Antonio won, Boston won, and we're
on 4 Ls and counting??????? NOOOOOOOOOOOOO! yEah it's early, yeah, Andrew will help, but
this sucks, period. If you're not at least bothered, check your pulse, you may be legally dead.
(15) MUD - i hated that game and the team certainly has issues right now, but i'm not ready to
give up on them yet...
(16) LROB - Okay this is the first loss that got my blood boiling a little. Pau must be hurting.
There's no way he can play that lifeless, right? Kobe and Fish fouling 3pt shooters with the game
on the line. Kobe and Fish giving away the nice double digit cushion right before halftime.
Okay I just had to vent a little. Just a hiccup in the road. Carry on!
(17) THE TRIANGULATOR - The Sky is Falling! The Sky is Falling! Hey Chicken Littles, this is
the best thng that could happen to this team. Flat-Footed D & Stonehenge Offense, but still
winning games early in the season, leads to the complacency we're experiencing. You've heard
the football saying "On Any Given Sunday", well with the NBA it's "On Any Given Night, Any
Team Can Win in the NBA!" Now, add to that that every team from 2 to 30 wants a piece of the
NBA Back-to-Back Champs ( Not to Mention the 2nd Winningist NBA Championship Franchise
in History), and even undersized, injury depleted teams are going to bring it against the Lakers.
The media may have the Lakers flying under the radar, but all of these teams have placed a target
on the backs of the Lakers. They are salivating for the tipoff each and every time they play the
Lakers. Flat-footed D & No Continuity on Offense Gives Each of these Sub-500 Teams a Window
of Opportunity that Translates into 4 Straight Losses! Good! Embarrassment Early for this Team
will payoff dividends. Tired or Not, They are Playing Down to the Opposition. Eating A little
Humble Pie is good for the egos that believe they can turn it on and off as needed. If I Were PJ,
I Would Have "Los Losers" sweatshirts made up for the entire team and make it mandatory attire
at each practice for every losing streak of 2 or more games... Go Lakers! Right the Ship!
(18) LAKESHOWINPHX - Here come all of the trolls beating up on L.A.! ha ha you all make me laugh!
no doubt the Lakers are in a funk, but it doesn't mean they're not going ng to right the ship!
(19) LAKERS4REALZ - I love this....mainly because it is early...yes I too scream at the tv hoping that
the lakers play SOME defense. He ll...I could have probably beat them single handedly tonight.
Again, another poor game down the stretch..it frustrates me , mainly because I dont see the grit and heart....point is it is EARLY folks. Dont trade anyone, dont go crazy, it is funny if we had won these
4 games, people would be annointing us the next quadruple peat team.......Anyway, take it in stride
....AS long as we are back in business come JUNE...this will ALL be a long memory. Remember last
year how we lost about 7 out of 10 games towards the END of the season..and people were writing
us off......Yes 4 in a row to lose is bad...especially the way we lose games this year (we basically
HAND it over to the other team, dont play defense.....etc etc) however, we will be standing with
Larry Obrien in the end..mark my words. Take it easy people.
(20) ART-FL LAKERS FAN - Let's hope this 4 game losing streak serves as a wake up call. Still lots
of BB to be played. Slumps happen. Plenty of time to right the ship. Soon would be a good time to
start. Is it time for a team meeting yet? With Krispee Kreme Hot N Now donuts. Mmmm, that's the ticket.
(21) PSYCHEDLAKERGIRL – I am NOT worried. I stand tall as a proud Laker fan.
However, I am still thinking start Luke! Give Pau some rest by having
LO move over to C during big stretches of the game. They need to split time there.
(22) RICK FRIEDMAN - Dear Lakers: Just do whatever PLG says.
(23) LAKERHOLIC - I have never seen Kobe act this way. There is no fire. He is smiling and congratulating the guys that beat him. Where is the scowl? Where is the game face? Where is the Black Mamba? The last bunch of games, when it comes down to "winning time", I haven't seen the Lakers that I am use to. I haven't seen the Kobe that I am use to. Pau is lethargic. He feels he is playing too many minutes. I don't think he liked Phil calling him out for not being aggressive enough. Since then he has lost his mojo - except for the perfect game of course. He probably wanted another big man as well. He didn't get one. He needs more sleep or vitamins or something. He had the summer off? It is early in the season... ? Drew. We need you. They held on pretty well until the Thanksgiving - when they thought you would be back. The glaring difference between the wins and losses is ball movement - guys creating easy shots for other guys. I think Kobe has to go into Magic mode. He is feeling he has to take on the scoring load with Pau playing like crap, but we always play better when he is the facilitator. Guys feel honored that he passed them the ball and they want to do well. He draws a double team, so there is always an open guy. I am a Lakorholic.
(24) TIM-4-SHOW - It's not that losing 4 in a row equates to impossible to win a title. It's only 4 games in the SECOND (MM?) month of the season and has no bearing on playoff outcomes. However, championship caliber teams just don't go on thse sorts of slides and especially don't go on them against sub .500 teams. It doesn't determine anything in of itself, but also does not bode well. Thankfully, the eastern teams do not look insurmountable and the Lakers are a different team with Bynum in the line-up.
(25) ANDY L. - After a gazillion half hearted games we'll be right there in the playoffs again tearing it up. But must it be so gawd damned hard every time??? I don't enjoy close games against crap teams. It only makes me annoyed, even if we end up winning
(26) ROCKY - I am not in the sky is falling crowd. I'm not worried at all. This Laker team is excellent at handling adversity. I expect the Lakers to come back very strong at some point. I think they just need something to motivate them. Playing these inferior teams has grown old for our Lakers. I think once
we get to some statement games, like against the Spurs, Thunder, Celtics and Heat, we will see the
Lakers that we are used to seeing.
(27) 63 FOOTER - As much as I hate this losing streak, but more how low-energy/inefficient we've
played lately (win or lose), as a sports fan, I'm fascinated by what will happen next. Will this rouse
the Lakers to strap on their armor, sharpen their swords and become the warriors we know they can
be? Or will they break into little pieces forcing Kobe to go all stellar to try to bootstrap them back
into greatness? Will Phil stand up for a whole game to prove a point? Will Dr. Buss ban Drew
from all Playmates and Ferrari's, making a similar vow himself to show camaraderie? Will Luke
be seen haunting Pauley Pavilion late at night practicing his fundamentals with the ghost of Coach
Wooden? And what about the bunnies? This is going to be a season to remember, but it will all get
back to basics. Back to back championships mean nothing now; it's all about good old fashion
do-your-job basketball from here on out. In that light, I give you a man who knew the basics, and sits
in this video with nothing but an out-of-tune guitar and a mic, and totally knows how to do the work:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1zsRRt1FWE&feature=related
(28) EDWIN GUECO - The sky is not falling but fans are just being realistic in searching for solutions
why we are losing 4 consecutively while started the season with 8 wins in a row? The problem in this
blog, sometimes we don't consider the views of everyone but just stick to the stubborn lakerholic
viewpoint which is sometimes self serving and purely cheer leading without any recourse akin to
solutions or extend the courtesy in acknowledging other contrary views. This is like a guy from
Michigan who is used to cold winter, he thinks he can handle the weather in North Pole. The sky
may be falling to cockiness and braggadocios of those who are not used to losing, they are just
back to earth and may listen to realism and humility.
(29) PMAC - Kobe is given the ball too late in the shot clock and when he posts up no one is cutting
which forces him into a tough shot, cant blame him. Also, no one is defnding the rim or jumping
for rebounds. Andrew will help because as stated before Gasol can go back to PF, I dont think he is
tired or worn out I think he is sick of playing C so his effort isnt the same Its all correctable they
should win next 3 but the big test will be in Chicago next Friday !
(30) CALIPHLOSOPHER - My take on things - I'm neither worried, but nor am
I pissed off. I'm more befuddled to be honest. I just don't get it. As far as I'm concerned, can't focus on it too much, since Friday we play Sacramento. Perhaps things will be
supremely addressed over the long weekend, since our next game isn't until tuesday (I believe).
(31) KOBEMVP88 - This is nauseating. The Lakers are aging and it is showing. I know it's early,
but the sooner Bynum comes back, the better. We will need him healthy from the time he returns
to end this season. Fortunately, this is happening now so there's plenty of time to right the ship,
but it is concerning
(32) DWNTWN ATTY - Man, terrible 4 game stretch. I'm beginning to think that the NBA is showing more parity among teams than ever before. A motivated weaker team can take out an unmotivated superior team on any given day/night. As well as the Lakers opened the season, it is clear that w/out Bynum and/or additional bigs, the Lakers will suffer defensively. Gasol/Odom as our core interior defenders will never be the consistent shot challengers that we need to prevent/alter easy points in the paint. We will continue to get burned off the dribble/pick and rolled to death. As long as there is nobody in the middle saying "oh no you don't" teams will continue to exploit this hole and accumulate easy baskets. If that's how it is, we will increasingly rely on a juggernaut offense to score and score and cover-up our defensive flaws. It's hard to be a juggernaut every night, so we should expect that on days when our shots aren't falling, we will lose even to teams that have no business being on the floor with us.
(33) FRMKT - again, nothing to be concerned about. it's time for phil to begin playing the entire team even if it equates to additional loses becasue we're losing already at the expense of compromising the health of players. we had a good run in the beginning of the season now it's time to adjust until Andrew's return. will it cost us games? absolutely, but at this point, it's going to be more important to head into the playoffs with momentum and above all else, HEALTHY! enough games have been played this season so opposing teams have plenty of film to review and play accordingly against the champs. it just makes it that much harder for every game the lakers play because everyone is out to beat them - for obvious reasons - so any kink in our armor is completely exploited. the 'chip is not in jeopardy, so the focus has to remain on getting into the playyoffs at the highest possible "seed" with momentum and health. pau needs to take off of friday even if it means another loss and we need to see more of luke, sasha, ebanks and caracter in order to spread the minutes around; it's still early in the season so it's a luxury that should not be wasted. i don't even care about the X-mas game anymore. to heck with statements because we're going to have much bigger fish to fry and fry they will!
(34) MCLYNE - As for the Lakers, the sky is not falling, but this is getting ridiculous! I don't want to hear people using Bynum's absence as a huge factor because this team has enough talent to compete with EVERY SINGLE team in the league without him. Yes, he makes a lot of things easier, especially on the defensive end, but we can and will win games without him.
(35) PUDDLE - Because I've been sucked into the vortex that is grad school, I thankfully have only had the displeasure of sitting through 2 of the last 4 losses. (I missed last night's debacle and the game against Utah). So maybe it's the fact that I haven't had my soul tortured as much as many of you hearty soldiers, but I don't think this 4 game losing streak is as bad as it looks. Look, I'm not trying to say this 4 game losing streak is no big deal. These are important games that the Lakers should be winning and yet choose not to. I say "choose" because the Lakers can beat whomever they want whenever they want. They are choosing to disrespect teams by thinking they can win games by just showing up. All that said though, the Lakers 4 losses have come by a combined 21 points. That's not good, but it's not the end of the world. Advanced analytics have shown that a team's record in close games is no more than a coin flip. These are bound to even out and go in the Lakers direction at some point. The Lakers are too good, too deep, too experienced to not turn this thing around. I bet we forget all about this in about 2 months.
(36) STAPLES24 - Now everyone is saying for the Lakers to start winning we need to get Bynum back?
I think both are incorrect. Lakers need Bynum to win Championships against elite teams. BUT, Lakers does not need Bynum to win against Memphis, Pacers, Houston. It needs KOBE"S face to play like he is enjoying the game, he has been frowning the whole game everytime, For LAKERS to start winning, Kobe needs to start enjoying the game with his teammates. Get rid of the unhappy face, Kobe!
(37) D(EREK) J(ETER) - I'm actually kinda having fun, I mean, we go through this stuff every season. Well, I don't like it much, but it's not something we shouldn't be used to. We'll be fine, just need to be healthy and rested for the Playoffs. That all being said, I think perhaps PJ should alter the rotation and starting group, just perhaps. Lakers!!
(38) FEARLESS - Oh, yeah! Y ou know this is the bandwagon for me. The sky is not falling. I repeat: The sky is not falling!
(39) MAGIC PHIL - I have 1 thing to say: I’M NOT WORRIED JUST PISSED OFF!!!!!!!!!!!!
(40) JEFE101 -Please add me to the "I'm not worried...maybe a tad pissed off" bandwagon. I also agree with the poster(s) that decry Kobe's performances of late as much as Pau's - both have been struggling, at the same time, and that's why we're losing. It's pretty unprecedented that these two are concurrently underperforming. Part of Kobe's job is to be the catalyst for this team correctly running its offense, as well as communicating and rotating on defense, and he's been failing at both ends of that job as of late. It'll get fixed because Kobe can and will make that adjustment. Not much can be done about Pau being extended the way he has been, playing out of position, until Andrew Bynum gets back - that's just the way it is. Once Bynum gets back and Phil gets a chance to work his triumverate of bigs rotation, the planets will become re-aligned and all will be well - that will be the time to truly evaluate this team. I am soooooo not worried.

To those who say the sky is not falling! You are wrong!!

If Video Game Baby does not come back like promised or gets traded for a serviceable Big Man, We are DOOMED!

Our Big Man cannot survive through an entire season and extended playoff run at this pace!

KObe will get over 2200 points for the season but it still will not be enough.

Trade The Big Baby Now, along with Susha, the Redhead, and Mitch before It's too Late,

BandWagon!!!

Oh, you ask what trades are out there, Anything(Take pennies on the Dollar)!!
Including that 50cents off coupon for a Dairy Queen Blizzard!!!

"Exactly. Kobe is the one who really is tired, really playing hurt. And still you don't hear him or anyone bring up the tired or hurt excuse.

Posted by: Magia32 | December 02, 2010 at 01:24 PM

"

But you just did it :)

Rest Pau is obvious move and get another servicing Center is also a must. Any neanderthal who has not been in a basketball game will observe the sign of weariness on the Catalan. Pau is a great player but he's just human like anyone us here when overused, over played, over worked, they get TIRED. That's pure common sense yet we don't address an obvious problem. What do you want from Pau to prove that he is dead tired, just fall dead at the middle of the court? I'm not a doctor either how do you interpret those hamstring stiffness. Can anyone of you here run, jump and play good basketball if you're suffering from cramps or hamstring problem?

Oh yeah "play him more, play him more" this is like those Roman citizens at the Coliseum in Rome that happened 2,000 years ago clamoring for blood, guts and glory from their gladiators.

hey guys we are having a chat at 5 p.m.

The notion that why does Pau deserve special treatment I think is fairly obvious. He just hurt his hamstring. Looking at his season average is misleading b/c he had early games in the season where he and the starters got lots of rest. It's more that he's logged 40+ minutes on a consistent basis that's troubling

"The notion that why does Pau deserve special treatment I think is fairly obvious. He just hurt his hamstring. Looking at his season average is misleading b/c he had early games in the season where he and the starters got lots of rest. It's more that he's logged 40+ minutes on a consistent basis that's troubling

Posted by: Mark Medina | December 02, 2010 at 04:33 PM "

Agreed. And the Lakers simply don't win games when Pau is not at his best. They can recover from a bad shooting night from Kobe or a disappearing act from Odom but when Pau is not having a normal game, nothing goes as planned. He's really the last guy you'd want to burn out early in the season.


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