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Lakers blog profile: phred phredington explains why being a Lakers fan is 'all about the love'

Possibly phred, at some undisclosed time or location

This is the 26th post in a series that helps you get to know members of the L.A. Times Lakers blog community. Feel free to send submissions to [email protected]

phred’s Profile: IT IS ALL ABOUT THE LOVE and
(phred Has To Say It Is A Good Life, Whenever He Is Sad or Cryin’ the Lakers Hoist the O’Brien.” And
phred Goes From Alex English to World Peace and Understanding In Less Than Five Easy Steps.

Step One; A Brief Autobiographical Sketch Slightly Segmented to Fit the Question Format.
Why I like the Lakers and My First Favorite Basketball Player: A Gilded Reminiscence.

My first favorite basketball player was Alex English. To explain, let me start by saying that I grew up in South Dakota and my family didn’t have a television. This was in the early '80s when I was maybe 4 or 5 years old. My mom worked the 2-12 shift on weekends so she could stay home with me and my brother and sister during the week when my dad was working, so on Saturday and Sunday nights, my dad took care of us. My brother and sister were older and went to bed on their own, but I was young and didn’t like to sleep alone, so I would lie on my dad’s bed and listen to the radio with him until I fell asleep, then he would pick me up and carry me to bed. My dad liked sports, so that was what he listened to most of the time.  

In South Dakota, most of the games on the radio were the Denver Nuggets, as this was ostensibly the "local" team. So for most of the basketball season, I liked Alex English. But eventually (this must have been the playoffs, probably like '84-'86 or so), the Nuggets went away and I got to listen to Chick Hearn call Lakers games.  Meanwhile, at school I was starting to see posters and hear about this guy Magic Johnson, and eventually I got to watch a few games on TV. It was him and Larry Bird, and Bird was ugly, scary and mean-looking, while Magic was smiling and good-looking and nice to everybody. Sure, the Lakers also had this ugly old guy with goggles, but Magic passed him the ball and he scored a lot of points, so it was all good.

I was pretty young at the time; there was a lot I didn’t know about basketball. I think mostly it was that I started liking basketball because Magic did it really well, not the other way around.  And of course listening to Chick Hearn call a game every week while you fall asleep has to be some kind of programming. The Lakers took a firm grip on my soul.

Eventually I got older and starting going to sleep in my own bed on weekends, and basketball started being something that you talked about with other kids and an excuse to buy cool shoes, and everybody starting talking about this Michael Jordan guy, but by that point there was some personal pride invested in loyalty to Magic, and the Lakers were always the best team anyway. I didn’t have to worry about basketball; it was a nice hobby what with the GI Joe and the Nintendo and the Dallas Cowboys and the skateboarding and the dirty jokes and whatever it was you did in elementary school.


My Most Heartbreaking Lakers Moment and How It Made Me Appreciate Basketball:

Then Magic announced he had HIV. That was devastating, because back then it was a death sentence. Magic was going to die. But to me (I was still pretty young and selfish, I admit), it was even worse, because HE WASN’T GOING TO PLAY BASKETBALL ANYMORE. That was the real blow.

I don’t think I was really a basketball fan until then. I know I didn’t think about it in those terms at the time, but it really was a case of not knowing what you had until he was gone. I couldn’t watch Magic anymore. The Lakers weren’t the champions anymore (sure, they weren’t anyway, but to me it was close enough. The Lakers not having the trophy at the moment was a small thing, soon to be fixed).  It was all about Michael Jordan, and that was my brother’s favorite player  -- I couldn’t cheer for him.

With that, and junior high and puberty and Joey Lawrence on "Blossom" and all, the early '90s pretty much sucked. By high school, I was cynical and sick of the Bulls always winning and whatnot. I still watched all the games anyway, though. You couldn’t not watch Michael, and the Gatorade commercial was pretty catchy.

There were some minor things to keep me going. Magic’s All-Star game. The Dream Team. Magic’s comeback (there is a thread here). I liked Hakeem’s Rockets teams, and when the Bulls played the Sonics or the Jazz, I could cheer for the Bulls without remorse, because the enemy of my conference rival is my friend. And I didn’t like this guy Shaq, and he kept losing. And Magic was still alive. He was doing to the worst thing that seemed like it could happen to a guy what he did it to the Celtics and the Pistons. He was winning.

Phred, circa showtime
When Basketball Really Became About The Lakers For Me:

Then stuff started to get better. I hit a growth spurt, girls started to like me, and high school got fun. And then I got good grades and SATs and I got to go pick a college. Pretty much anywhere. So I picked one in Los Angeles. Sure, it was a good school, with good financial aid. My brother was living in L.A. now. The weather was nice. But there was that other thing in the back of my mind.

The Lakers signed Shaq (It neutralized him. I could put up with his free throws when he was in a Lakers uni. The playoff sweeps, he had to work on.) They drafted this guy Kobe. I got to go far, far away from home, live in the dorms, party on weekends with pretty girls, and watch the Lakers on local TV three times a week, with Chick calling the games.  

So, so far I can’t say the Lakers were sustaining me in times of trouble. They were sort of mirroring my life trajectory. At least in retrospect. At the time, it was just cool.

Eventually, some of it wore off. It wasn’t getting easier for the Lakers. They were struggling.  They kept losing when it mattered. Del Harris, Nick Van Exel, Kurt Rambis, Dennis Rodman. I started struggling. College was hard. Both school and the Lakers were entertaining but ultimately unfulfilling.  I was diagnosed with a serious mood disorder, and thus had way more in common with Rodman than I wanted. (You see why I like Ron so much.) I couldn’t walk away from the game; basketball still wouldn’t let me go. There was a strike. The Spurs won the title. I watched it all, I enjoyed the Heat-versus-Knicks (Van Gundy versus Riley I, a great defensive battle.)

I quit school and went home to South Dakota to figure stuff out. Stuff seemed to be at low ebb. It wasn’t exactly my thought at the time, ‘Hey! I need something good to happen in my life! Maybe the Lakers will win some classic playoff series and the championship!’ But it happened, and it helped. Sure, probably my family and friends and inner strength helped in there somewhere too, Who knows?  I got a job I liked. I met nice people and pretty girls. The Lakers won again. Then, as the song goes, the tour was over and I went back to school. I figured I was ready to try again.

I was at the University of Oregon, living in the dorms. I met some people, but was still working to make friends. Then one day (story abbreviated for space) I walked by a dorm room, and there were guys inside watching basketball. I asked them if I could watch, they said, "Sure." One guy was a Lakers fan; most of the others were Blazers fans, but they loved the game. We bonded. (Longer, funnier but thankfully less true version; because I took two years off, I was 21. They figured this out, and then we bonded.)

One of the best years of my life. You can’t understand how great it is to watch the Lakers until you watch them with one great friend who likes the Lakers and three great friends who like the Blazers.  I still have the wrecked baseball bat from the greatest game of my life, the day Robert Horry beat the Kings and gave us a dynasty.  My friend, the Blazer fan, took it hard, the dorm room took it harder, and I have my one, only and greatest Lakers souvenir: a battered, dented, red plastic baseball bat.

I’m going on long, so I’ll skip most of the long years. The rest of the decade went OK; I graduated, moved slightly north to southwestern Washington but not out of Blazerville, got a job, then another job, then another job, went on with my life. I watched most of the Smush/Kwame Phoenix debacle on break at work (That team came really close. People really don't give those guys enough credit. One miss from Tim Thomas and we would have been at least in the WCF)

Step Two:  The Los Angeles Times Lakers Blog:

Life happened; after a couple of years, I tried to keep working and go back to school. It didn’t work out, and I started having a few free nights. I found that you could watch Lakers games over the Internet, if you found a helpful, newspaper-sponsored blog where people would post the game link, and you didn’t mind watching the game on the screen the size of a postage stamp; I didn’t. There were some interesting people on there.

The Lakers got Pau, the Lakers started doing better. I went back to school again, looking for the master’s degree. The Lakers lost. School didn’t take again. Life started to look rough. I didn’t have the confidence or the money to keep trying higher education. I’m sure some of you noticed, but it wasn’t a great time to go back to the job market either. I had a lot of free nights, a computer and the Internet, and not much else. But the Lakers were winning. I knew it. And I had the blog. I could watch every game, and so I did. It seemed to beat the drinking-and hard-core-pornography option. At my best count, I watched 104 Laker games in the '08-'09 season, and read  -- well, I have no idea how many blog articles and comments. The blog that I had dabbled in and argued about Luke Walton in during games had turned into an outlet. A nourishment of the soul, if you will pardon my glaring hyperbole.

Yeah, it wasn’t that bad. I still had family and friends and a combination of workers comp and helpful parents that staved off the really bad stuff. But it was something to do at worst, and at best, it was amazing. A great community. A modern Secaucus, a Gertrude Stein’s Paris to a young writer, an Athens of great Lakers civilization combined with an actual friendly, goodhearted (really!) and welcoming group of people that didn’t worry about what you looked like (OK, I’m good on that count, ), how much money you made (less good), or whether or not you were actually crazy. (Jury still out)

Sure, it was a little rough. The depth of the feelings and the relative anonymity of the Internet caused a lot of friction. But I had some experience with that. I worked for several years off and on (and on again lately) at a couple of residential group homes for messed-up kids with behavioral disorders. They were at times utterly homicidal, but there was one time when some of us in the staff came up with a little slogan we tried out, and started telling the kids and telling them to look past the minor irritations and petty arguments (which with them might involve bloodshed at times) to respect each other as people.  It sort of took, with one group of kids, for a little while. They liked saying it. They even started believing it, and making a little act of faith and believing that the other kid believed it too. Maybe if they meant it, and they cared about the other kid ... maybe ... IT WAS ALL ABOUT THE LOVE

So, I tried adding that to the end of my diatribe about how the guy yelling about Luke Walton was a moron. That guy wasn’t nearly as bad (I hoped) as some of the kids I worked with, and what I had learned about those kids was that deep down they really just wanted to be loved. Maybe I was right about that, and maybe not.

Stuff in my life kept happening. I still couldn’t find a job or a school, I was tired and running out of money, and my dad was starting to really show signs of developing degenerative dementia, and he and my mom were still in South Dakota, with me and my brother and sister off in completely different states. My brother and sister were starting families. So, I thought about it. The Lakers won the title. I kept thinking about it. I went back to South Dakota. I got my job back with the homicidal kids, a new generation that hadn’t learned (still working on that) that it was... well, you know. I started helping out with my dad. I sucked it up with being a long way away from my old life. (South Dakota? Come visit in the summer. See Mt. Rushmore and Wall Drug. Keep moving. It ain’t that great).

Y’all can probably figure out where I’m going here. It turned out I was kind of right. The blog ... no, let me make it clear ... the people in the blog.  Mamba ... justa ... LakerTom ... Jon K ... Blitz ... mage ... pfunk ... well, the band is playing me off, so let me say everybody ... were there for me. I didn’t have to run to them with my problems and ask for help, I didn’t need anyone to talk me off any ledges, I had family, I had support, I knew it was going to be ok. 

But in my life I needed a community. I needed an intellectual outlet. I needed somewhere to go that was about something great. And I needed something to go right, so right I could get behind it and ride it for a while through the dark, gray, hard other stuff. And I had it. I had the Lakers. I had you guys. I had the love.


Step Three.  My Favorite Laker Ron Artest and How Basketball Can Change the World (Maybe):

I love the Lakers. I have been rewarded with great athletes, great people, great talents, vicious competitors, really valuable people, really likable and compelling people, and Ron Artest.
Ron Artest. The flawed, tarnished soul. Who came to us to show who he really was.  

I’m going to acknowledge Ron. He did what he had to do. He became a great teammate. He became a great ambassador of the game to everybody. He went to fans' homes to sample Filipino food. He sang (sort of) karaoke and (Celine Dion) (what the heck?).  He got in shape, he played hard, he struggled, but he was there and he was why we won.

Then he started really giving back.

Ron Artest is my favorite Laker, and not because of what he did on the floor. I wrote this after Ron decided to raffle off his championship ring to raise money for mental health. It fills this section in nicely, I think.

I think this is great. Aside from the fact that the cause is something I feel very passionate about both as someone with a mood disorder and someone in the mental health profession, the simple altruism of this is awesome.  

Of all of the championship rings that have been handed out in every sport, ever, this is the first time I know of that one was simply donated for a charitable cause. Sold to pay debts, hocked for drug money, maybe, seized in bankruptcy settlements, lost in drunken hazes (ok, I don’t really know of any of those), or just left around to gather dust in a display case, championship rings are fought over and slobbered over and obnoxiously worn occasionally.

But ultimately it is just a big, gaudy chunk of gold and diamonds for all that. Unless somebody melts it down and takes it apart someday, it might as well be plastic. It is just a symbol of something greater, something that isn’t physically tangible: winning a title. The value of this piece of jewelry -- impressive as it is at what, maybe $30,000, $40,000? -- isn’t really that much compared to what most athletes earn in either salary or endorsements. Even for an athlete like Ron Artest, who is getting paid comparatively less than many of his teammates, it’s chump change.The really valuable thing to Artest is, in my opinion, not the symbol of winning; it’s the fact of winning. The fact that he was on and contributed so much to the winning team won’t disappear when he gives away the ring.  

But ignore all that. Think what this means to Lakers fans who are thrilled at the chance to spend money to take part in something about their favorite team. Sports fanaticism is all about vicariously seizing some part of a great athletic achievement. Tickets to see the Lakers, a Ron Artest (No. 37?) jersey, a big coffee table book of black and white pictures, a DVD of behind-the-scenes videos. These fans now have a chance to bid for what has to be the greatest piece of Lakers memorabilia ever.   

Then stop thinking about that. Think about what this is actually doing. Lakers fans are suddenly given a chance to take part in a great effort to raise money for a great cause. Not only supporting their team, but through supporting their team, just helping people. Giving money for mental health treatment for kids in schools is a great thing. I can promise from personal experience that there aren’t people, especially trained people, there to turn to. Kids are miserable for years. I thought that the symptoms of a mood disorder were normal. If I’d never been able to go to college where there was help available, I might still think that. If I was even alive, that is.  

Kids hurt themselves, hurt other people, and they flat-out kill themselves because they don’t have someone there to help them to understand what is happening inside their head. Even if this saves one or two kids, it would be worth it, but this could potentially put hundreds of mental health professionals in a position to help. Of all the great things this can potentially do for kids though, the greatest thing has already been done. A great basketball player, a championship athlete with the Los Angeles Lakers, the biggest thing in basketball, has come out and said, "I have a mental illness. I see a therapist. I am dealing with it, and it’s OK." I’m probably not the only person who sees the parallels to what Magic did for people with HIV, but they are there. There is a huge stigma associated with mental illness that its victims don’t deserve.

There is nothing wrong with having a mood disorder, or seeing a psychiatrist or a psychologist.  They can help. And I think because of what Ron Artest has done, thousands or hundreds of thousands of kids have been exposed to that idea. And I will acknowledge that as freakin' awesome.

Step Four: How the Los Angeles Lakers Can Change the World Even If Ron’s Raffle Does Not Do It, Because Honestly That Might Be A Bit Of A Reach:

Well, I think maybe you guys can see where I might be going with this. When I started out, I was a kid listening to the radio with no life plans or an agenda. When I wrote this and you are reading it, I’m a guy who is part of a loving community of people who are there for each other. People who don’t know much about each other, really. People who might be men or women, black or white or Asian or none or all of the above. Who might be Christian, Muslim, atheist or whatever. Who might Democrat or Republican or not. Who might be American or Italian or Indian or Australian or Mozambican. Who might be, well, a lot of things. You get the idea.  

But everybody on here has two things in common. They care about basketball, and they are a human beings. And we can sit here and talk about it. And I hope that eventually we can love each other as much as we love the game. And when it is all about the love, maybe there will be world peace and understanding.

phred phredington.  2011.

-- Mark Medina

E-mail the Lakers blog at [email protected]

Photos 1 and 3: phred phredington may or may not have been standing next to the Larry O'Brien trophy at an undisclosed location. phred phredington also appears in a school picture, likely with the Lakers on his mind: Credit: phred phredington

Photo: Magic Johnson stuns the nation on Nov. 7, 1991, with his announcement that he has tested positive for HIV and will retire from the NBA after 12 seasons. Credit: Steve Dykes / Los Angeles Times

Photo: Lakers forward Ron Artest is introduced at Eastmont Intermediate School, where he spoke to students about the mental health issues he has dealt with since age 13. Credit: Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times

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It’s a slow day at the track as far as I am concerned. Not saying that I won’t watch the Super Bowl but the action I need to truly enjoy a game is having my team play. As a loyal 49ers fan, I will of course be rooting for the Packers because they’re an NFC team and I don’t want the Steelers to pad their Super Bowl record with another watered down championship in the current parity-driven free agent era.

Watching Pau play more aggressively against the Hornets was a positive sign. While he does at times seem to be complaining or disapproving of how Kobe is playing, the truth is that he desperately needs Kobe’s approval to validate his standing in the league and he realizes it. That’s why he has suddenly responded to the criticism about his play. He will do anything to win Kobe’s approval and praise.

The NBA is all about the matchups. That’s why you can’t read too much into how Pau played against the Hornets because that matchup favored him. The true test will come when we play Boston on the upcoming road trip. Pau will need to at least play KG to a standstill for the Lakers to have confidence that they can beat Boston. If KG dominates and intimidates Pau, that might be his ticket out.

As big an impact that Drew has had on the Lakers play since he started, I am beginning to wonder if he will be able to get all the way back this season. Were now mostly winning game with Drew back in the lineup but we’re not dominating them. Part of it is that Drew is still not 100% healthy, which to me shows up mostly in his jumping. At his best, Drew was vacuuming up rebounds way above the rim all alone. Now he is grabbing boards in heavy traffic slightly above the rim. While I’ll take the Drew we have now if he can stay healthy, I can’t stop from thinking what Drew the Beast could do.

Nice to see Ron and Fish play well. And good to see Phil starting to stabilize our lineups and roles. When Barnes get back, it’s going to be a 9-man rotation Kobe, Fish, Artest, Drew, and Pau starting and LO and the Killer B’s off the bench. We may not be the best during the regular season but you can bet in a 7-game series, we’re the team that nobody wants to play regardless of seed.


Sooooooooooooo! Hi phred! Didn't think you'd do it my brother, but glad that you did. I must say this is not only a great Profile, but it's inspirational, educational and fun. Wow I've always had a high opinion of you but...that opinion now skyrockets. Knowlegeable, compassionate, caring, sarcastic and funny. I guess it must be something to that All about the Love thing. I mean this Profile just knocks me out. I don't know if I should shake your hand or stand up and cheer. What I do know is Laker Nation is lucky to have you as a member and I am blessed to call you a friend. Thank you for allowing Laker Nation in on a slice of the life of phred. Keep on doing what you do my brother because you do it...OUT FREAKING STANDINGLY SIR!!! KUDOS or should I say BRAVO!!!!

Cool phred!

@PHRED… It was a pleasure reading your profile and getting to know you better. Try or not, I think most of us have some form of visualization of their blog friends. Based on the wisdom and wit of your posts, I had really envisioned a much older and more worldly man. But hey, as I know all too well, it’s better to be younger. Love and share your passion and respect for Ron Artest. He is such a good soul at heart it almost hurts me when he doesn’t play well. As for mental health, moves like Ron’s are so critical for people to feel hopeful and willing to ask for help from professionals. It IS about the Love.

@SEAN… Congrats on the Friedman, Sean. And speaking off the Friedman, wasup Rick? Hope you are in good health and just enjoying a confrontation-less period of rest and relaxation.

Nice, phred!!!!

Worth reading every word!!!

phred, that was a beautiful profile. Inspiring and uplifiting.

The Lakers have been more than your favorite sports team, they have been there through your life journeys.

You have also demonstrated how this very blog has served as more than a forum to discuss the latest Laker happenings, but moreso a support group and even more importantly, a source of friends and camaraderie that is has always been there for you.

Your profile has served as more than just the average profile. It gives us thought on what the blog means to each of us, what the Lakers mean. Watching/listening to Laker games can link us all together, this blog being the conduit. Each of us are separated by distance, but together in love. Love for the Lakers. Love for this blog, and love for each other.

It is a pleasure to get to know you better. Now, I truly do understand what you mean by saying 'It's all about the love'

It is, truly, all about the love.


WOW...JUST WOW!!! Knocked my socks off!!!

I truly enjoyed reading this. Well thought out, great read, totally different from every other profile on here.

Thanks for the link yesterday guys.
Sorry for not being around, I kind of boycotted the blog when comments had to be moderated.

Sorry for not being around, I kind of boycotted the blog when comments had to be moderated. Posted by: Diandra | February 06, 2011 at 03:28 PM
And without Diandra being around I kind of boycotted it too!! Carry On!

@phred...Great stuff!! I'll never read one of your comments again without thinking about the deeper meaning behind your catchprase..."It's all about the love!" A simple and beautiful philosophy that can change the world.

Finally....they started the damn Super Bowl! With airplanes flying, Declarations of Independence, Michael Douglas pontificating and Christina Aquilera botching the National Anthem, I can honestly say that the pre-game festivities were just a wee bit over the top!! Enjoy the game, guys!!

SuperBowl? What SuperBowl? I'd rather read phred's profile again!!!


phred! What an awesome profile! I absolutely LOVED what you posted about Ron Ron. I too love that Ron is all about making this world a better place.

I really appreciate your presence here and your comittment to a better blog and everyone loving each other.

Well done!

Thanks, it's beautiful. I should have suggested having an alex english picture in there not that i think about it.-

i dont' suppose it's too late, i have had 3 or 4 people compliment me on how young I am... do you think you could alter the caption from my school picture to read 'phred, fourth grade, circa showtimes?'

either way, thanks a ton, i love it



Great profile phred.

The PSP spent the day telling people not to write off the Packers so easily. Tough defense, dependable quarterback and a wide receiver that never drops the ball.

Anyway a lot of game to go yet, but commercials suck so far. :(

PSP Intern

Packers we have you right where we want you now!!!

Larry, could be a chance for Green Bay to win one without Farve!

Great profile phredikins. You're right, it's all about the love.
A xx

My God! The Steelers are losing, no post from Justanothermambafan. If not for this phred profile the day would have been a total loss!!!!!! THANK YOU PHRED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anna-it is. thanks. for you, you know, it always is.


Phred- The old ugly guy, I guess he can be pretty scaring to a kid. But the CAPTAIN was the greatest, nice profile.

Yes, Yes, Yes! And the Steelers are coming back with a VENGENCE!!!!!!

My dear phred - awesome profile. I told you what I felt about it before. It's beautiful and I'm glad you finally shared it with everyone. Smooches.

What a great, great profile Phred - truly inspirational! It's a pleasure sharing space with you on the blog (though my postings have been much, much more scattered these days). I'm blown away - that's a top three profile if I've ever seen one!

@Phred, very nice profile. I read it 3x already and loving it more and more, in my opinion this is the best profile to date.

As the Black Eyed Peas sang during the halftime show, "where is the love?", the love is in this blog. It is all about love indeed.

yo phred cool story bro.

pau gasol is the best big man for the lakers did you see the some of the right and left hand shots pau has been makeing ? im talking about really old school diet pepsi skyhooks here people. really class

speaking of gasols would it REALLY be so wrong to see pau and marc on the same team,. i dont think we should trade bynum but it would be more than interesting to see what these two spanish bruisers could accomplish on the same team

with regard to the superbowl of cereal im trying to understand really i am but they are saying things like 4th down and 5 and im really out of my depth here people ......

i dont like american football its too impersonal everyone has helmets on and you cant tell anyones expressions. they might as well be robots

can u imagine if the lakers had to wear helmets like american footballers


Very interesting profile...I expected nothing less. I must say that it's fun to needle you about the Oregon Phil Knights, err, Ducks, but it's all in good fun. Say, you still haven't given credit to SHEKOBE for the Love. What's up with that?!

Hey Phred !! Wonderfully engaging and an adorable profile.Almost makes me not hate you (anymore )for hiding it all this while.Thanks for everything you do around here and for letting us know you a little better.Good to know that there is a core of sanity to the madness that is PhredPhredington :)



Really good my friend!


What a fantastic profile. Very introspective, insightful, inspirational and well written. You said you would get the profile done by February (oh yeah I remember that) and you are a man of your word. Now I see why it took you so long. But it was well worth the wait. It was so good I wanted to have some popcorn while reading, (but I ate enough during the Super Bowl festivities). It was fitting for MM to post your profile on Super Sunday because your profile was indeed the Super Bowl of profiles.

Of course, it wouldn’t be me if I didn’t have a song to dedicate to you. Check out the nice little rap at the end.

Earth, Wind & Fire – All About Love.


Beautiful heart felt effort! Quite impressive. Keep on keepin' on!

Hey Phred, phantastic profile ! :-)

Great getting to know you and your story. I've been through a similar school of hard knocks and also work with at risk kids. Keep ridin' the love train with your Laker compatriots! Very glad to have you aboard!!!

Wow Phred, outstanding profile. Enjoyed every word and love the photos. Thanks for sharing.


This is the best thing to ever be posted on the blog in its existence.

Amazing stuff.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

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


Congrats Phred, handsome kid and nice profile. It is all about Love.


Duuuude... nice!



Sorry, man, but I and my family are Browns founds. The Steelers are a great franchise and I respect them, but I respect the Packers more. A town (not a city, a fricken TOWN) of 70,000 people have their own football team that is sold out every game. It's amazing and a representation of everything that American potential sings to.

The Packers are truly a special team.

To add to that, I lived in Minnesota as a kid briefly. Minnesotans are kind of weird people. I've never met a person from Wisconsin that I've disliked. Good people. They deserve this Championship.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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



(standing up & clapping)
Es todo amor.

phred - Thanks for sharing your profile...I loved it...

I was wrong...I pictured you in my head as a Buddy Holly type...but Groucho Marx was my next guess...

Great job bruh...

It took my old laptop several minutes to load the Time's elephantine site but the wait was so worth it... a profile of Phred, the one and only. I can remember clearly, the first comments I ever read by this guy because they were such a blast, a stream-of-conscious blur and I immediately felt an affinity. Phred could synopsize the ingredients for instant mashed potatoes and make it read like William Burroughs. Nice profile old friend and I know what you mean about basketball as a sanctuary. I think we all do.

@phred - WOW! awesome ya phreddie!

mr phred phredington,

EPIC freakin profile! gave me the goosebumps..

you are the MAN!


your brutal honesty is appreciated here... like it or not some things sometimes to some people just need to be said out loud!!

and go packs GO!!! what did i FREAKIN SAY??! HUH?? U TALKIN TO ME???

MR CAL PRODUCT.. RODGERS 3TD!! SUPERBOWL MVP.. something mr favREE never did BEFORE!!!!


Speaking of brutal honesty

Phred, thanks.

Your engage in a livelihood with full of intimidation to the point that you have no clue why people in this blog abhor your posts? It is about time we have to be brutally frank with you since you only listen to yourself.

How do you want to be treated in this blog 888? Shall we ask your permission first if we have any iota of opinion about a player, about a coach and about the team? Did we say it right, Master of Intimidation? Did we guess what you are thinking? When are we supposed to shout? When are we going to jump to the bandwagon? Is this how you want to be treated with special autocratic privileges.

Why don't you start your own blog and put the legal spiel of what should be said and not said. It seems that we are all in a balancing act here just to please you.

Next time you post since you are clueless on moderation and civility, ask your wife how others would feel with your uncanny style of communication?

Posted by: Edwin Gueco | February 06, 2011 at 01:33 PM


Don't go back into hibernation. 888 doesn't intimidate or scare anyone.
If anything when he posts what he does,it's more like- Oh 888 is drunk posting again.

Edwin, posthowyalike, thinkhowyalike, dowutchyalike.

To all those that enjoyed Phred's profile and haven't submitted their own....what are you waiting for? You may not be as good a writer as phred (I know I'm not), but we'd still like to hear your story. Remember you can share as much or as little as you like...but do share!

phred - I can't thank you enough for being such a valuable member of The Times' Lakers blog community. I truly enjoyed reading your profile

What a brutally honest and candid profile. Much Love Brah! This "blog" really is a special place.

"Even when we didn't make the playoffs, I thought we'd win the championship." Dr. Buss


Oh PHRED!!!!!!

You know these days I am forced to not avoid sleep at nights, I am forced to stay very little in front of a screen and this prevents me from hanging out here (and in chat games) as my heart would suggest me too but as soon as I saw yesterday you had a blog profile on I told myself "I don't care about doctors' opinion.... I'm gonna spend half an hour writing in the blog for him tomorrow!".

Not to sound unresponsive to any other blogger here (I adore you as a whole... I even like those I don't properly like here because it's what makes this place amazing in the first place to have so many different minds to confront ourselves with) but you all know my softer spot is for this guy and has always been so.

Your writing (thinking?) style is pretty unique phred.

I just bend and bow to it; you have that legitimate insight on games that I really feel nearby to (not that i am as savvy as you in analysis, I don't claim that... it's just that it seems to me I tend to naturally agree with most of what you say, and so that may mean we dig and dislike the same things in basketball... and this makes me reciprocate you best) and that creative and funny and sharp ways with words that always, always and invariably get me amazed.

I really am delighted with your profile and I thank MM to have put it up.

I apologize for my lack of presences lately but my system blastered with Labyrinthitis just finds hard to write cohesive thoughts after work (which became like 30 time more demanding in these conditions) nowadays.

As for games live, I'm forced to re-watch them during days, because I am forbidden to sleep less than 7 hours per night with this annoying ear syndrome (a real trouble for my Lakers heart... no need to detail that *cries*).

But YOU---- well I owed you this phred.

I can't wait for my stupid ear to get better so I can start again my regular life over here too (and Lakers need all LIVE support these days... don't we?), but gotta admit that one of the things I truly look the most forward when that will finally be happening... is to interact again with you man.

And now I wish I could end this with a very witty and snarky sentence but as you may guess.... these days especially I get blanked easily in the brain, and I will avoid to fool myself that I can come up with anything as good as you'd deserve.

To my adored family... even wounded I still part of Purple&Gold brigade PROUDLY.

Whatever we're in the midst of... ALWAYS a Proud Laker Heart.

Catch you all hopefully super-soon.

Know that even in my state, I read all that is written here (slowly, but I do).

LLL, Zaira :)


While my daughter and wife (both at the same time) kept on calling me and yelling at me,i could not stop reading your profile..

That was good..

LakerTom insiste en menospreciar a Pau Gasol, primero le quita mérito a su último partido, luego dice que necesita el halago y la aprobación de Kobe para terminar afirmando que si delante de Kevin Garnett no da la talla puede ser su ticket de salida del equipo... es preocupante la obsesión con que LakerTom está afrontando esa batalla personal contra Gasol para, se supone, beneficiar a Bynum.

No, tranquilo, Pau tiene el sitio asegurado en los Lakers hasta el final de su contrato, quien parece estar en primera línea de salida para ser traspasado es Bynum, en todo caso, por muchas vueltas que le de, su opinión ni crea tendencia ni posibilitará que las cosas sean de forma diferente a como tienen que ser, bajo su apariencia de persona equilibrada y politicamente correcta no puede disimular su malestar al ver que Gasol sigue siendo considerado muy por encima de Andrew Bynum.

Si traspasan a Bynum temo que no lo pueda soportar.

Only for Karmaniac,

Hey, obviamente debes ser de la Península porque he leído un post anterior y tu español es perfecto. Bueno, estando totalmente de acuerdo con tus comentarios, creo que no debes perder energía analizando todo esto que comentas. Es obvio que para la mayoría de los fans de los Lakers, sería mucho más vendible un Bynum como Pivot titular y superestrella, por cuestiones de nacionalidad, cultura y si me apuras hasta por color. En mi opinión, oponerse a esto no tiene sentido, además piensa que Pau solamente esta cumpliendo una etapa en los Lakers, una más. No creo que sea recordado allí por muchos anillos que tengan porque ellos ya tienen sus propios ídolos, actuales y pretéritos. De ahí que me parece bien que Pau se "autogestione" a nivel de esfuerzo. La gloria se la va a llevar Kobe en esta era, así que si la quiere, pues que se la curre y se parte él la cara en la pista. Pau debe reservarse para la selección española, y al final de su carrera profesional, para el Barça. Los Lakers son irrelevantes, un paso más en su dilatada y exitosa carrera. Y creo que él también lo ve así. ¿Que lo traspasan? Y qué........

Saludos desde Barcelona.

Only for Karmanic,

y como complemento final, piensa por ejemplo en el protagonistas de este último post, el tal Phred. Su mayor ídolo de los Lakers es "Ron Artest". Imagínate, tener como ídolo a un tío que parece un auténtico asesino, medio loco, mal educado y con aspecto de haber visitado la mayoría de las cárceles del mundo occidental. Pues eso es la tónica habitual en L.A. Así que teniendo esto presente, no esperes defensa alguna de Pau Gasol, que es la total antítesis del típico ídolo USA vinculado al Básket. Yo hubiera preferido un traspaso desde Memphis a Boston. Los Celtics son un equipo y un club mucho más apropiado para Gasol que los Lakers. Mucha más clase amigo, pero bueno, las cosas son así y al menos ha ganado 2 anillos con el semidelincuente de Kobe. Su penitencia debe ser que tiene que convivir con él cada día, y además tener que aguantar a perlas como Artest o Barnes.

Ricky: Soc de les illes. El meu anglés només hem serveix per no perdra l'oremus quant vaig de viatge i per aixó li dic les coses a LakerTom en castellá. Una abraçada

Very nice profile.


Checking in for the Game Day Roll Call...

Tonight will be the 2nd win of 7 straight on the road.

Let's go for seven & o!


Tonight will be the 2nd win of 7 straight on the road. Let's go for seven & o!
LAKERS ALL DAY!!! Posted by: JovBatz44 | February 07, 2011 at 04:51 AM
Good Morning JovBatz44. Thanks for checking in.

LAKERS (34-16) vs. GRIZZLIES (27-25)_ 5:00 PM_ TV = KCAL_RADIO = 710/1330 ESPN
*_______________________________________________________________________* _ I Love LA - Here comes Lakers
Good Morning Justanothermambafan(Head of Mamba Clan) & Fabulous Morning Crue!!!
DJ LROB, LakerLASS, LEWSTRS, NewMexicoLL, Fan Of The Mamba, PsychedLakerGirl,Jon K
Faith, Wes, Rick Friedman, KB Blitz, EastCoastJessie, DBDH, Caliphilosopher, HobbitMage, HTJ
KobeMVP888, 63 Footer, 2Phatt, MagicPhil, JohnnyP, JohnnyV, Noah, Complex_Brotha, Phred,
Jolly Rancher, Nemaia Faletogo, Jamie Sweet, ChicNStu, Wallace, ZairaAmaterasu(Goddess), P_ang
PFUNK36, STAPLES24, LakerFanInCowTown, OCIsMambaCounty, Joe Corrad, TroyB, Troy, MUD
Edwin Gueco, LakerTom, GinDC, I hearned that, Wilson24, Todd, FRMKT, J24(LadyJ24), Fearless
Art-Fl-Laker-Fan, McLyne, CornerJ, Laker-J Jefe101, CyberCosmix, Vman, Seely-Iggy, McLyne
Tom Daniels, LakerTom, Edwin Gueco, The OutLaw & Baby OutLaw, BronxLakerFan, Mark G.
RamneetKB24, Adrian Palomar, Diandra, Ricky, D(erek) J(eter), London Laker, JustaLakerFan
Nostradamus, Segeboy/Sheriif, Jay_KB24, Yellow Fever, Gilbert Batung, ALLNet, J-Dizzle, SonnyB.
PatrickHenryPress, OCLEZY, LakerFan24, NBA4Ever, Raymond42N, Bay To LA, LakerPeace, Yogi
RaiderLaker1980, Chad712, Alekesam, TrollMan, Sonny B, G-Money, Sean,TNTLakerFan, PSS
LakeShow,Dave M., Autoport, CornerJ, Chadamu, Ninja, Gandalf The Purple & Gold RossDogg76, Scott, LAL_Fan, HopAlong, Tony, JovBatz44, Mr. Laker, Alekesam , Zopi, Scottie Pimpin, Jennifer, Bill, Frank, inquiring minds wanna know, NuggetsCountry, LakerTruth, LakerHolic, IHeartKB24, BoyNamedSue *________________________________________________________ - Kobe Bryant - The Worlds Greatest _ Kobe Bryant - Greatness Personified Kobe Bryant - SIMPLY THE BEST

. Los Celtics son un equipo y un club mucho más apropiado para Gasol que los Lakers. Mucha más clase amigo

Posted by: Ricky | February 07, 2011 at 03:40 AM

Los celtics, mucha mas clase?

Te digo una cosa? No mames!!!



phred for the win! I salute you, sir.



si, ja em recordava que ets de "ses Illes". Tranquil, que a mi el meu anglés no em serveix ni per aixo dels viatges (no tinc aquesta oportunitat perque he d´estar cordat a la meva cadira tot l´any pel curro) De fet, entro en blogs com aquest per practicar una mica, pero poca cosa i molt malament com ja hauràs pogut comprovar. Vaig fer anglés al institut, i després res de res. Al menys anglés, perque també per feina he tingut que practicar francés, que crec, domino bastant més que l´anglés amb el que soc realment patètic.

Una abraçada. Per cert, de quina Illa ets????


Good morning to you, sir!!
Thanks for the eye-opening roll call! Your Steelers really represented well last night, but ran into an equally determined team that was better, at least for one night. No shame in that!

A nice double digit Laker win tonight should cheer you up!


It is all about the love!

Great profile! I totally enjoyed the synopsis of your life journey!

Good Morning Mamba24!

Just got to rub it in a little, Go-Pack-Go!!!

To Magia32

You can speak and write spanish, too???? You are from "Balears Islands" as Karmaniac?????

Por cierto, Boston Celtics es un Club con más clase que los Lakers, ahora y siempre. Y por muchos condicionantes que ahora no vienen al caso pero que tú intuyes y conoces si eres seguidor de la NBA y de la reciente historia americana, sabrás porqué digo que Gasol encajaría mucho más en los Celtics. Si no lo intuyes o no lo sabes, es que no tienes ni idea de lo que estoy hablando y tampoco tengo ni ganas ni tiempo de explicártelo. Pero es así. Gasol no encaja en los Lakers de ninguna manera.

phred, congratulations for an amazing profile!

I like the part about Ron, because our life is made of good and bad things.
And he have redemed himself and made great contributions on and off the court.

I hope this community use this profile to make harmony. I know there must discussion and confrontation, but when our team loses we can be more respectful for the team and for our community colleagues.

The Real Pau´s Team is not Los Angeles Lakers, is the Spanish National Team and F.C. Barcelona. Lakers are only a steep, no more. Pau is pacing himself right now.

your brutal honesty is appreciated here... like it or not some things sometimes to some people just need to be said out loud!!

Posted by: yellofever | February 06, 2011 at 10:09 PM

True that!

Our Dearest Ricky has gone to the dark side.

Translation via "Bing"

Indeed, Boston Celtics is a Club with more class than the Lakers now and always. And by many constraints that now not beside the point but you intuyes and you know if you are a follower of the NBA and the recent American history, you'll know why I say that Gasol would fit more on the Celtics. If not the intuyes or do not know, is that you have no idea what I am talking about and have not or you win nor time to explain it. But this is the case. Gasol not fit the Lakers in any way.

Posted by: Ricky | February 07, 2011 at 07:20 AM

Por lo que respecta a los aficionados españoles, a Los Lakers les pueden ir dando por allí. Después de 3 finales y 2 anillos, lo mal que tratan a Pau (soft, Gasoft.... etcc..) no merecen ni el más mínimo esfuerzo más. Ojalá Pau se administre bien los esfuerzos este año para poder competir con la selección española en el Europeo,y a los Lakers que les vayan dando, y al final de temporada un traspaso y fin.


Here at Singapore, as I take the morning train going to work, I usually read through several RSS articles for my daily fix. Snippets of Lakers, tech, world news, and some personal blogs. Today, you broke my routine, as I got stuck to reading only one thing throughout my travel - your blog profile. It's probably one of the best things that I read here and anywhere!

Yours was a very nice and inspiring story. I thought a tear almost fell from my eyes. I usually scan through articles in the morning trying to cram all the info I can get. But this article was every bit interesting. I'm thinking of reading them again tomorrow morning, and just get my fix on the way back home.

Thanks for sharing and I guess I can say you got my attention.

I don't spend as much time here. I hang out more at the live-chats. I've professed my admirations for some of the greats here in this blog during my hello-world posting - LakerTom. Edwin Gueco. JonK, amongst others. I guess now I'll look forward with more interest to reading your posts as well.

And so now, you disrupted my day ender routines. But I can't let this day pass not commending and thanking you for what you have shared with us.

Spread the love.


Tom Daniels,

While I'm at it, would just like to let you know that I like your postings too and I'm an avid follower.


Phred: great story and insight to your wonderful Laker connection. Thanks so much for sharing!

A little anecdote for you since I am reporting in late. I went to Vegas forSuper Bowl yesterday and was in the Aria fan zone fball party. I finally look away from the visual overload and sitting right behind me is Big Shot Rob!!

Yes, a little Laker freakout from PLG. Had to pay our waiter $100 to find me a sharpie - but I got Robert Horry autograph a mini football!!!. I know, totally innappropriate - but it was that or a napkin.

So, I am reporting in from Vegas on game day. Think I need to go and put another $100 on the Lakers to win it all.

Cheers everyone! PLG

Phred Phredington,

Great profile. It is ALL about the Love.

@BronxlakerFan & Fan of the Mamba:

Steeler win would have been good.
Laker 3-peat...PRICELESSS!!!!

thanks, everybody. I would like to say i'm humbled, but i'm not sure this swelling in my head is humility.

But either way, I'm floored by the nice things you guys have said about me and my profile. All I wanted from it was for it to be a little entertaining.

You guys make an awesome community here.


much love



that was truly awesome! really inspirational -- filled to the brim with depth and honesty...

thanks so much for posting that, and thanks to MM too...


"But everybody on here has two things in common. They care about basketball, and they are a human beings. And we can sit here and talk about it. And I hope that eventually we can love each other as much as we love the game. And when it is all about the love, maybe there will be world peace and understanding."

Nice. I like the idea.



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