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Pau Gasol trade to Lakers spurred Grizzlies' current playoff success

Gasol-brothers_320 The reactions swung from pure elation in Los Angeles to confusion and head-scratching around the NBA.

The Lakers had just acquired Pau Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies for Kwame Brown, Aaron McKie, Javaris Crittenton, two first-round picks and the rights to Pau's brother Marc, who the Lakers drafted with a second-round pick in 2007. The move immediately softened Kobe Bryant's frustration about the team lacking a championship roster, caused Phil Jackson to admit he could never see the trade scenario happening and prompted NBA analyst Stephen A. Smith to argue the Lakers should immediately throw a championship parade, even if it was in mid-February.

Outside of the giddy excitement surrounding L.A., however, sat a skeptic in Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich, who was wondering why the Grizzlies would agree to such a transaction. "What they did in Memphis is beyond comprehension," Popovich said at the time. "There should be a trade committee that can scratch all trades that make no sense. I just wish I had been on a trade committee that oversees NBA trades. I would have voted no to the L.A. trade."

Popovich has since softened his stance, telling the Memphis Commercial Appeal's Ronald Tillery last year the deal actually made sense in a long-term perspective since the move gave Memphis salary-cap relief and Marc Gasol evolved into an All-Star center. There was definitely a hint of irony that the Grizzlies upset the Spurs in a first-round series in six games to open the 2011 NBA playoffs, becoming just the fourth No. 8-seeded team to beat a top-seeded club in the playoffs and second to do so in a seven-game series.

Pau Gasol, whose rooting interest points more to his brother than following his former team, immediately texted Marc, congratulating him for his 14.2 points and 12.3 points a game averages in the series. What was left unsaid entailed Pau's revelation after Saturday's practice that he was glad the Lakers didn't face the Grizzlies in the first round for reasons beyond wanting to see his brother advance far in the playoffs.

"I also didn't want to cross with them because I would have to beat him basically, beat him and his team," said Gasol, who believes the Grizzlies are "capable" of beating the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference semifinals beginning Sunday. "In another way, I thought they would've been extremely challenging and would've tested us and given us a lot of problems. But we would have to really tune into our really best to beat them. That would've put us into another level like Oklahoma City did last year. They would've been a heck of an opponent."

That marks a fairly quick evolution for the Grizzlies, who at the time of the trade had been derided as a small-market team trying to cut corners and pinch pennies. No doubt, the Lakers have largely benefitted from Pau's arrival, marked by three consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals and two consecutive championships. The trade also came on the heels of Pau Gasol guiding the Grizzlies to three postseason appearances in six seasons, only to be swept, 4-0, in all three. But trading Pau to the Lakers also paved the way in assembling a roster that carried them past the Spurs with Marc Gasol, Zach Randolph, Mike Conley, O.J. MayoDarrell Arthur, Shane Battier, Tony AllenHamed Haddadi, Greivis Vasquez and Sam Young. Randolph scoring 17 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter in the series-clinching win over San Antonio proved only fitting since he was the main acquisition the Grizzlies made thanks to creating salary-cap space.  

"It's not easy to put a team together like they have," said Pau Gasol, who described the Grizzlies' defense and team unity as excellent. "Hopefully they will be able to keep it. That will be the challenge. I think they are [capable], and are making a big effort on doing that. So hopefully the players will want to stay and not move on to another team. We'll see how far they can go. They're capable of beating another good team in Oklahoma City." 

--Mark Medina

E-mail the Lakers blog at [email protected]

Photo: Pau Gasol of the Lakers and Marc Gasol of the Grizzlies chat before the 2009 West All-Star team began practice. Credit: John G. Mabanglo / EPA

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Go you Grizz...OKC are very cocky....To cocky ..

Even if Kobe plays like Game 6, when he took awhile to adjust to his shot, that will be fine, too. Don't kid yourself, Kobe had his fingerprints all over BOTH of those games, MVP-style! As concerned as fans are about the Mavs, and should be, the truth is that we match up very well against them because they can't match our physicality. Bynum and Artest will be defensive keys to frustrating them all series, which I think will be a relatively short one. Remember, Kobe defends Kidd, so he will be limited and Dirk is flat out a horrible defensive player. He can't guard anyone and he rarely blocks shots. Bynum DESTROYED Tyson Chandler the last two times we played them. He outweighs Chandler by about 50-60 pounds. Yeah, Jason Terry has killed us in the past, but this is the PLAYOFFS and he's never seen us when we put the defensive clamps on a team, PLAYOFFS-style. We are talking about a perenially weak playoff team against the two time defending champs, the likes of which they have NEVER faced in the playoffs. I take that back. Kidd faced a Phil Jackson coached defense in his prime in the NBA Finals 2002. How did that work out for him?

Lakers in 5.


You described the Spurs fans loss in their blog: "Expressions of sadness, followed by calm discussion on what needs to be done to fix the team."

~~I just came from a party and talked to some Laker fans out there, their wives were describing their husbands when Laker lost their first game against NO. No talking for the whole afternoon till evening and early in going to bed. haha!I think Laker fans are different kind of bananas among other NBA fans. Firstly, it is the cultural divergence in SoCal which is unprecedented, no neighbor have identical attitudes and temperament in accepting a loss. SA is really a small market fan base compared to Lakers who have the following in Southern California and the Laker fans throughout US and the world; Secondly, LA is a basketball town, sadly other sports are now far second to the Lakers especially during the playoffs so the passion runs high in a playoff's loss. Laker fans here are also represented by different economic strata from the richest in the Westside to the poorest citizens in the South and Eastside to the middle income suburbanites and all the way to 3rd world basketball countries; Thirdly, Laker fans have been spoiled by good teams from five generational links from: Mikan & MN Lakers to Baylor/West/Wilt to Magic/Kareem/James to Shaq/Kobe/Horry and now to Kobe/Pau/Bynum. Every generation creates their own identity and perfection. Passion and expectations runs higher and higher as they carry over their "fan-demonium" to their sons and daughters in the last 60 years. SA is more of a tourist destination of Alamo, if they got eliminated just cool with aura of forgiveness and cheer of lets do it again next year.

Well, Laker fans really have to find ways how to cool down themselves when they don't meet their expectations. I talked to LakerTom and Jon K in person and we shared the same aches and pains when Lakers lose a season. Perhaps, it varies in intensity but the pain could still be unbearable up to the start of the next season. Down and out, hard to go out for socials, listen or read to sports news and analysis and according to a housewife fan by the name of bob, she could not sleep well when Lakers lost in 2008 Finals. Her husband described her as being so upset on anything for almost a week.

It is really a difficult responsibility to be a Laker player and coaches. Unknowingly, they have created a nation of GM's, players and coaches watching their back at all times. They treat them as soldiers spoiled with luxuries and fortune and in exchange, they expect them to excel in a is just a basketball war but not to the outlook of a spoiled Laker fan. It is either Championship or nothing at all. Laker fans expect to win always even if their soldiers are just a bunch of scrubs in the past or oldies who could no longer keep with pace. It is the purple and gold tradition of expectation of excellence or else an emotional imbalance with rattled nerves. I hope all our players realize such heavy burden on their shoulders. When they step on the basketball court, they represent a Laker nation without boundaries throughout the world.


That was a beautiful post which spoke volumes. As Lakers fans, we ARE spoiled and our expectations ARE at times unrealistic. I admit it. I always have to use my rational mind to TRY to keep my emotions in check. It is NOT easy! Moving on from the 2008 defeat to the Hated Ones .. which in reality was a magical season that we didn't expect .. was a complete rationalization on my part. In some ways, that season should have been glorified as much as these past two championships strictly based on the unexpected accomplishment, but lo and behold, it wasn't easy. My defense mechanism was to shut the game off in the third quarter and privately give that team my own standing ovation even as my heart sunk and my mood soured. Yes, it would be easier to just be a Spurs fan or a Jazz fan (or whatever) I suppose, but what fun would that be? I prefer expecting excellence in the post-season and taking my emotional lumps when there's failure. Hey, I've been a Yankees fan since I was 7, so I'm used to it anyway. Great post, Edwin!


The Grizzlies drafted Donte Green with the 2008 First Round pick acquired from the Lakers and then made a 3 team deal involving the Blazers and Rockets and wound up with Darrell Arthur. The 2010 First Round pick acquired from the Lakers turned out to be Greivis Vasquez. With Marc Gasol, that's 3 rotation players right there and let's not forget that they used the salary cap space that they cleared when they traded Pau to sign Zach Randolph. We also got a Second Round pick from them, which we used to draft Devin Ebanks. If that's not a trade that helped both teams, I don't know what is!

Very nicely put. One of the things I truly miss by not stopping by as often these days, is your commentary. As for Memphis, they're a team that's blossomed without a lot of notice or fanfare. I watched all of their games against the Spurs and was impressed - they're a tough, no-nonsense squad. I don't think they can beat OKC in a 7-game series but then again, I never would have bet on them to beat the Spurs either.

Many of us bloggers have been talking about the Gasol trade and the irony of Pop's reaction of said trade for a week and a half now.

Thirty2, I think the Grizz match up well with OKC. Westbrook and Durant are pretty much their whole offense, and Memphis has Tony Allen and Battier to frustrate the crap out of them. On the other hand, Ibaka and Perkins will play great defense on Z-Bo and Marc. It's gonna be an awesome series! I predict Memphis in 6.

Great post mate..

Its very different for me over here.Everyone loves either Aussie rules or Rugby.
So when my team(Lakers) go down i have no body to talk to about the game.

Yes other people follow the NBA but none of my family,friends or work mates follow it..

I wear my Laker cap to work...Often people come to my work and say "what about Jordan or Rose and the Bulls......I dont give them a chance...They get the complete box and dice about our history..Then they ask "what made you get into basketball instead of Rugby or the AFL?.....I just make mention about some of our great players and history....And this 6,9 point guard that made me stay glued to the tv named Magic Johnson....I thought point guards are the shorter guys on the court they say....This is the crap i put up with every day.....

I love the Lakers...I want to win every game and title year in and out..My wife knows when we loose a game because she can hear me yelling at the tv...

We coming towards the end of golden era...We have a once in a generation player and people still find time to bash him on this blog...When his gone maybe then the penny will have dropped about how good Kobe was..

Special players make a franchise succeed....

The Lakers have had more than others..





===------ === ------====
/_____l______l__ ___\____
ll l ----- Lakers 4 - Mavs 0 --------]
L___(0)l______l__ ____l(0) J

JovBatz24 - In my opinion, THE LAKERS WILL SWEEP THE MAVS.



===------ === ------====
/_____l______l__ ___\____
ll l ----- Lakers 4 - Mavs 1 --------]
L___(0)l______l__ ____l(0) J
LEWSTRS - Driver
cofm99 - Entertainment Director
Lakemelody - History Consultant
KobeMVP888: 1-2-3 RING! #17 coming up STRONG!!!
VtLaker - Hooter Girls...yeah yeah okay I'm on board
mclyne - LAKERS IN 5! We have officially gained our swagger back and will dominate the soft Mavs for fou out of the five it will take.



===------ === ------====
/_____l______l__ ___\____
ll l ----- Lakers 4 - Mavs 2 --------]
L___(0)l______l__ ____l(0) J

LRob - Sorry Cubes, your Mavs are on the tracks and the Laker Express is smoking thru.
OCLEZY - But the Lakers are the more physical team with Bynum up front,and Artest,i'll take Lakers in 6.


Come aboard...and join a wagon!!!

Yes it worked this time...

Everyone join a Suburban wagon...and let's see who are the handicappers here....


Gasol and Z-Bo hold the key..

Conley.Mayo, had better be on their game

The grizz took the season series 3-1..

J..Lets hope that their front line can dominate.

OJ Mayo and Conley had better bring their a game.

I think the Hawks will beat the Bulls..Boozer is a non factor again and Rose cant do it all on his own.

Edwin, Great post! Ive been a Laker fan since the logo played, listening to Chick create a new language. I remember following Riley and Goodrich, Wilt. I took my son to see Magic and Kareem. I cried with joy when we fially beat the hated Celtics and cried with saddness when Magic announced his retirement. Yes, our beloved Lakers have given fans all over the world a lifetime of memories. We are privelidged to have this storied franchise in our midst. History is being written as we speak!

I must admit I had SA in 7. The Griz ran circles around SA and congrats to Mem. I think their series w OKC will be agreat one but I take the Thunder in 7.

Watching Mem and OKC, The Lakers definitely need to slow the pace and set the triangle offense in the half court. A fast pace plays to their strenth. When I tuned in to Game 6 of the last series at the half and NO had not even 40 pts, I knew the series was over.

4down, 12 to go for #17! Go Lakers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Edwin Gueco | April 30, 2011 at 08:58 PM

GREAT POST my Compadre...You hit all points on the head...

So my many games will the Mavs series be...

My examples of Laker fans going berserk...

*During the 80's, Magic vs Bird...I would run laps around the pool I was so amped up during the game in those crucial closing moments of the games...
*During the Shaq/Kobe Dynasty...jumping up and breaking a corner of the coffee table when Horry hit that 3 pointer vs the Queens...
*I broke my favorite beer mug throwing it against the back yard wall when we lost to Chowds in 08, the game we were up by double digits...
*I cried when we beat Orlando in 09 to get back in the Championship Mode...

Now I lay me down to sleep...
I pray my Lakers the Lord to peak...
Bless us with another 3PEAT...
Doubters and Haters we can delete...

Now I pray the bling we reap...
From Boston there is not a peep...
The Heat will fail, fall on their face...
God please put them in their place...

Now I pray our Lakers stay strong...
No injuries, good health we cruise along...
Give Kobe strength, and PJ wisdom...
God please bless the Laker Kingdom...


Thanks for all the props to everybody. I just try to relay what I observe with Laker fans and a description of myself over the years. I'm sure it happens to everyone and if you don't feel that kind attachment with the team, then you are not really a fan. Some are happy, hopeful with the greatest optimism like KobeMVP, Lewstrs, LakerTom; some are angry at someone else like yellofever, laker truth, pfunk, troy; some are just cool as cucumber like LRob, Tom Daniels, PLG, some are cynical like me and others but I will leave you nameless if you may wish to join my table. It is all about our team. We just express it in different ways when a Lakers loses in the playoffs but when they win the Championship, a euphoria for weeks, months and repeated so many times as the new standard of excellence. We want it again repeated next year, the year after next...etc perhaps till we all get exhausted in winning. lol!

Lew, I treat Dallas with respect than NO, so I pick Lakers in 6, I believe in destiny and I also believe in big business. lol again!

Nota Bene:

Part of what helped the Grizz get past the Spurs (during the regular season) was Rudy Gay - whose year before his shoulder injury was going wonderfully. They have a very solid team in Memphis, and they seem to play a style of ball that you see by athletic teams in rec leagues - lots of ball hawking, forcing people into turnovers, and just trying to get to the basket. No real inside-out, High-Low style of play (a la Pau-Socks), but either get it to the post, and let them go at it, or use a screen and drive right at your own offensive player in the post to screen off a bigger player, with the occasional corner 3 from either Shane or Tony Allen or Sam Young.

I think this team would be a real test to try to keep out of the paint, since they (A) get a fair number of points in the paint off of turnovers; (B) have Z-Bo who probably can roast anyone one-on-one; (C) have set up their offense to continually get people to the rack/below the ft. line.

On defense, they have the type of guards/wing players to run around with Kobe (Allen, Young, Vasquez, Battier). I think Mayo might hang with Kobe for a play or two, but that's 4 players who have some size at that position who could try to form a committee to wear Kobe down (like what we did to Chris Paul).

If we were to meet up with them (a big if, cause we'll have to get past Dallas; and please remember this is just speculation and not a guarantee that we will get past Dallas), I think it would be important to have the bigs keep their activity level (or improve it) from the last two games of the NOLA series - Doing so with force the Grizz to either (A) guard Kobe straight up - no running another defender to his side of the floor (like Conley or Vasquez); or (B) forcing the Grizz to double the post and sag to make sure that LO or Socks or Pau doesn't get a free path to the offensive glass (which I like even more). I trust Kobe's mid-range game, and if he gets those 15-17ft. shots in rhythm, it'll be a highly efficient night. A few open triples from Fish/Blake/Barnes/Brown/Ron-Ron (any combination, not 2 from each) will be enough to force them to play defense differently than how they played the Spurs (they made sure to NEVER give Matt Bonner an open look and were fine with other people taking 3-pt shots).

Hobbit -

I'm not a statistician, but I did have to read a number of books on probability in the fall semester (Bayesianism, different ways to interpret probability - i.e. classical interpretation, frequency interpretation, "subjective" interpretation [which is a misnomer]), so I might be able to shed some light of all the use of statistics. I also am functional using SPSS (Statistical Package for Social Scientists), so we could try to build something for me to run a regression analysis on and see if there's something that can be "shaken out" from the data, although, I'm not too sure about the array that would go into the analysis.

If we have someone who follows this blog who is an attendee (past or current) of the Sloan Conference at MIT, they might be able to give a bit more insight as to how to build a model for this kind of thing (or anyone who is good at model building, actually). That would be an interesting thread; especially when trying to factor in rule-changes etc.

Apologies for the digression.


I'll make my (tongue-in-cheek) prediction for the Dallas series: Lake Show in 2 - they beat Dallas so badly that anything and everything "Californian" or "West-Coast" gets banned from the state of Texas for 3 months.

Again, tongue-in-cheek and my apologies if you're from Texas. *WEST* Texas (i.e. Lubbock, Floydada, Brownfield, Midland, etc.) might not count though :-P

I promise it has nothing to do with Buddy Holly, Waylon Jennings or anyone from the music scene out there. Promise! ;-)

Hope everyone has a nice Sunday!

Lakers in 6 baby !!!

Thanks for the buses, Lewstrs.

Looks like no one wants to ride my bus... LOL!

Still, I say, Sweep!

Forgive me if I don't respect the Mavs or what are they capable of, I just feel that there is so much motivation for the Lakers to crush these Mavericks.



I'm here in New Orleans for vacation and what do I see a panhandler wearing last night? A 'Beat LA' T Shirt. I couldn't let that go without a comment.

"Cool shirt!" I said. He came back with a "don't you be making fun of me, it was a free shirt." Must have come from Broderick Turner.

We both laughed. He still didn't get any pity from Fatty, nor my money.

Fatty - Who predicts the Lakers in 5 LEWSTERS.


Just got my bus pass. I'm on board. It will be another week before I return home from Thailand. In the meantime, I hope to be able to get a good link so I can watch the game here on Tuesday morning (14 hours ahead of L.A.).

Keep up good work in place of our friend, Larry - Mamba24. I have no idea what happens to his disappearance and would appreciate any update on his status.

RoyceWebb Royce by NBAonESPN (Twitter):

"Happy harbinger for Celtics: No. 3 seed is 20-15 in series vs. No. 2 seed (in same conference) in past 27 seasons. (via Elias)"


That's IMPOSSIBLE! What about HCA???

@Edwin - Excellent post on Laker fans. Being in Detroit with the Pistons down I miss the excitement you get when everyone (sports radio, casual fans, etc) is talking hoops. Of course, I get it from my dedicated NBA friends, but its not the same.

@Lew - thanks for the bus!

@art - 2nd round starts today. You're tardy on the rest of your predictions :-)


How's school going?

Feel free to give the stats a try. I don't think anyone really cares though.
He made a well-reasoned argument. I don't think the stats support it, but
I understand how he used the stats.

Are you well?


This is May right...just had to question myself...for if it's May, that means our Lakers are in the thick of another playoffs and hunt for another Championship...

You couldn't tell from the spirit we have on our blog...

WAKE UP ALL...we need more positive COSMIC ENERGY in here...Join a series bandwagon, and check in for Roll Call on game days...

Do we need to turn on the SWITCH in our support...

I want to see and hear the Purple and Gold vibes...drink a Red Bull, have a double espresso take an upper, do some base jumping...ANYTHING to get your purple and blood PUMPING...

For this is the quest for the 3PEAT, PJ's last season, Kobe's 6th Ring...and we can watch, cheer and SUPPORT our boys together...

10 years from now you can say...YES I was saw it all happen...They DID IT...

The Lakers Dynasty - The Next Generation...They won #17 Baybee!!!






===------ === ------====
/_____l______l__ ___\____
ll l ----- Lakers 4 - Mavs 0 --------]
L___(0)l______l__ ____l(0) J

JovBatz24 - In my opinion, THE LAKERS WILL SWEEP THE MAVS.
Caliphilosopher - Lake Show in 2 - they beat Dallas so badly that anything and everything "Californian" or "West-Coast" gets banned from the state of Texas for 3 months.



===------ === ------====
/_____l______l__ ___\____
ll l ----- Lakers 4 - Mavs 1 --------]
L___(0)l______l__ ____l(0) J
LEWSTRS - Lakers in 5...we close this at home...
cofm99 - Add me to the 5 bus...
Lakemelody - I say Lakers 4-1.
KobeMVP888: Lakers in 5.
VtLaker - Hooter Girls...yeah yeah okay I'm on board
mclyne - LAKERS IN 5! We have officially gained our swagger back and will dominate the soft Mavs for four out of the five it will take.
Wallace - Just got my bus pass. I'm on board. It will be another week before I return home from Thailand
Fatty - Who predicts the Lakers in 5 LEWSTERS.
Maxximo - For the last time...Lakers 4 vs Dallas 1



===------ === ------====
/_____l______l__ ___\____
ll l ----- Lakers 4 - Mavs 2 --------]
L___(0)l______l__ ____l(0) J

LRob - Sorry Cubes, your Mavs are on the tracks and the Laker Express is smoking thru.
OCLEZY - But the Lakers are the more physical team with Bynum up front,and Artest,i'll take Lakers in 6.
Edwin Gueco - Lew, I treat Dallas with respect than NO, so I pick Lakers in 6, I believe in destiny and I also believe in big business.
truongcali - Lakers in 6 baby !!!


Come aboard...and join a wagon!!!


Hey, thanks for the wake up call, I almost forgot about that.

For your benefit I did them all the way through to the Finals so I won't be "sort of cheating".
Hey, just messing with ya, :)

I visited a psychic, read Tarot cards, had my aura analyzed, looked at the Magic 8 Ball, had my palms read, walked around the yard with a Dowsing Rod, went to see a Medium, and Astrally Projected (but got lost and had a heckuva time finding my way back).

Unfortunately, none of the above came up with the same answers, isn't that odd?
So I decided to pull out all the stops and just take a wild guess.

2nd round playoff predictions...


Lakers vs Mavs

- Lakers muddle through another round looking unbeatable at times and washed up at other times.
Once again, the Lakers finish it off in 6.

Grizz vs Thunder

- Grizz are good, they are now where OKC was a year ago, not quite ready. Thunder in 7.


Bulls vs Hawks,

- Hawks dream is over, time to wake up to a nightmare but somehow they manage to squeak out a win. Bulls in 5

Celtics vs Heat

- Celtics are a tough out and their experience will help them make this a long series but they aren't playing the Knicks. Riley has some team meetings and motivates in his own old Riles way. Celtics get worn down in a long series and the Heat move on to the ECF.


Laker vs OKC

- OKC takes it to the Lakers and wins in 6.
Ok, just kidding.
The Thunder put up a good fight but the Lakers can now smell a return to the Finals, Lakers in 7.


Heat vs Bulls

- I won't be surprised if the Heat take this one, but am going to stay with my pick of the Bulls. Coach Thib is the difference maker as he figures out a way to control the damage from the Heats' big 3. Chicago in a thrilling game 7 win.


Lakers vs Bulls

- Next season is going to be a short one due to the strike, so the powers that be want this to go 7 games and my tin foil hat friends agree 100%.
Have the Lakers come this far and gotten so close just to see it be stolen away by none other than the Bulls?
Rose drives the Lakers crazy but after 6 games it's all tied up.
In game 7 the Lakers are down at the half but Phil has one more ace up his sleeve and hypnotizes all the Lakers during half-time.
The Lakers win it once again through sheer force of will power.
Bittersweet but Happy Endings prevail, Phil really does retire to usher in a new era.
Who knows when next season will start...


My newly cleaned and polished-up Crystal Ball tells me the Los Angeles Lakers will crush the Dallas Mavericks in 5 thrilling, hard-fought games.

Mark it down: Lakers over the Mavs in 5

Kobe was honest enough to admit that his team DOES have a 'carry-over' effect from the bad-blood incident the last time they met. These guys remember the nastiness, and besides, Kobe would never let his guys forget anyway. Motivation will NOT be an issue this series.

To borrow a line that Lebron used when asked how he feels about facing Boston in the playoffs yet again: This time it's personal.

P & G R

Feel free to give the stats a try. I don't think anyone really cares though.
He made a well-reasoned argument. I don't think the stats support it, but
I understand how he used the stats.

Posted by: hobbitmage | May 01, 2011 at 08:26 AM


Clearly, in this blog, few people care much about NBA historical trends or trends involving Coach Eleven Rings' career. My posts get very little traction. Actually, I'm thankful that Bay to LA engages me in this discussion because no one else seems interested (except maybe LRob). That's OK, because I'm interested and it gives me a reason to do research. Pardon me if NBA history fascinates me and how it proves over and over again how history has a tendency to repeat itself. What makes this season so different than other similar seasons? The Heat? The Bulls? Kendrick Perkins on OKC? Kobe's ankle? Maybe.

You make the empty comment: "I don't think the stats support it." Don't support what? Can you be more specific? Can you explain WHY? Yesterday's counter-argument involved such things as injuries, rule changes, commitment to defense, teams making moves to match up with Lakers and professionalism (eyes rolled), without any statistical support or substance. What rule changes? How do they affect the Lakers' chance of three-peating? Why do you believe that the Lakers are not committed to playing defense in the playoffs? For someone who makes such a big deal trashing Andrew Bynum because of his ppg and rpg numbers compared to other centers, I'm surprised that was all you could come up with.

You never did rebut my comment that the Hornets averaged only 83.5 ppg in their 4 losses. Do you think Phil's Game 3 successes on the road when his teams are tied 1-1 are coincidental? How about closing out on the road 6 consecutive times? More coincidence? His 48-0 when his teams win Game 1 of a playoff series? Coincidence? Please hobbitmage, rebut this stuff. Tell me why I should ignore it. Tell me why I shouldn't be confident that the Lakers will win Game 3 if this series is locked up at 1-1. Or why I shouldn't be confident that they will close out on the road should that opportunity arise. Tell me why you "dont think the stats support it."

I don't want hot air and snide digs at me. I want substance.

hobbit - while you construct you response to 888...can you please give me your prediction for Mavs series...

I think that is an easier

Kobe 63- Mavericks 62 through three quaters ... the mavericks may have acquired bigs 2 matchup with our front court but we've owned them @ the 2 guard the past decade ... they simply don't have an answer for Kobe

I see our bigs drawing the attention and Kobe burning them in the first two games ... by the time the series hits Dallas, it'll be too late to send those double teams ... cuz #24 will be on a roll by then

I'm calling sweep ....


in reverse order:

I don't think I've thrown a snide dig at you in a couple of months.
I thought we were past that. Sorry if we're not.

re: historical trends. I thought I did address this. What I tried to say,
was that the trends are falsely represented. The reason why they're
falsely represented is because you have to go back to the 60's-70's
to see a team go the NBA finals 4 times and a row and win 3 or more.
Using Bulls' stats for PJ's 3-peats is incorrect, because this will be the
fourth time in 4 years he would be going to the Finals and *THAT* is
truly historic & different than a mere three-peat.

Another issue why the 3-peat stats are mis-leading is because of changes
w/in the team. In terms of "major" players, neither of the Bulls championship
teams changed any major players. These Lakers have had 3 different SFs
for 3 different appearances in the Finals.

Another issue with the 3-peat stats is that I don't recall MJ ever winning a
championship the same year he fractured fingers in his shooting hand. Nor
do I recall MJ winning a championship while getting fluid drained from his

re: Game 3 successes. I think that you're putting more on Phil than should
be placed. Phil's game 3 successes have all contained a "killer" at the SG
position. 1st it was MJ. 2nd it is Kobe. If you remove Kobe, the Lakers don't
win because our BIGS are too nice. Winning multiple championship is *NOT* about
being a good sport. It's about wanting to rip the heart out of your opponent
and show it to him as he takes his last breath.

While you have showed stats & trends, I don't think that the stats caused the
trends. In other words, your stats/trends say that this is how the Lakers will
perform. I argue that because of Kobe/MJ Phils teams did certain things &
since the Lakers still have Kobe ... they will still do certain things. i.e. win.

Is that clearer? Fwiw, I actually liked your well-reasoned/supported
argument the other day. Good Job!

No response for me hobbit???

These are still our goofy Lakers, Lakers in 6.

A "hint" of irony, no it was a big bowl covered in epic win sauce served with a spoon made of pure fun!

Now I lay me down to sleep...
I pray my Lakers the Lord to peak...
Bless us with another 3PEAT...
Doubters and Haters we can delete...

Now I pray the bling we reap...
From Boston there is not a peep...
The Heat will fail, fall on their face...
God please put them in their place...

Now I pray our Lakers stay strong...
No injuries, good health we cruise along...
Give Kobe strength, and PJ wisdom...
God please bless the Laker Kingdom...


Posted by: LEWSTRS | April 30, 2011 at 11:53 PM

That was good...a second Amen.

Lets go Celtics, beat the Cheat! Lets go Grizz, beat OKC!
Lets go those ankles and knees, then stomp Cubans Mav's tomorrow!

Hobbitmage -

I am well, thank you very much for asking! :-) I am currently about 24 days away from my first comprehensive final examination, and am working my way through Herbert Enderton's book titled "Elements of Set Theory" in order to prepare. London is quite nice now, with some sunshine and a crisp breeze. Think of a Bay Area summer, but with less fog. Once the examinations are over, my summer plans are still up in the air - with potential internships, job hunting, and PhD applications (along with applications for fellowships from things like NIH and NSF). That and writing my thesis will take up the majority of my time.

How are things on your end? I do hope you haven't incurred any serious injuries from your athletic hobby.

PG&R -

How are you? I haven't seen you here often (perhaps that is due to school on my end getting in the way). Are you well?

KobeMVP888 -

I hope you do not think that I was making snide remarks at you. I just thought the project of running statistical analysis with historical data sets is interesting - things like cohort effects, demographics, social trend modeling and the like interest me (even if not on a professional basis). Granted, there are some of the "advanced metrics" being bandied about on certain blogs that seem to be rather gauche with their presuppositions (much like the weak axiom of revealed preference in microeconomics [WARP]). One of those statistics was on Zach Lowe's blog on, and it's the concept of "overshooting" or "undershooting". I did a small bit of digging, and you can peruse at your own convenience here:

Also of significance is the actual post on the "overshooting/undershooting" phenomenon (which is borrowed from the concept of a Nash-equilibrium in micro-economics or game theory, whichever way your academic interest leans). The post (and PDF of the paper) is here:

With that in mind, I think that which view one takes as to what statistics are actually measuring (see the different types of interpretations of statistics to which I mentioned in my former post) is important for discussions like this. I also hope to reiterate the fact that I find these kinds of things (historical use of statistical data to ascertain what is "really" going on) is super important, especially with the dynamic nature of the ground rules of the NBA changing in significant ways every so often (remember when they moved the 3-pt. line in because they wanted to increase offense? it backfired; you got smart teams like Utah playing a type of zone which was really illegal defense at the time, and they dared centers and PFs to hit 20 ft. jumpers). I also hope you didn't think my comment was a swipe at yours; I do value your input!

Memphis will win the series in 6!
Epic series coming up, Celtics in 6! Can't wait.

@Lewsters........Awesome, Nobody says it like "The Lewstrs"... Put me on the Lakers in 5 Bandwagon...Think they learned a lesson with the Hornets! Hopin' we have a Bandwagon tomorrow!!! Lewsts?LakerTom?Diandra? Anybody?
I Love Our Lakers!!!!!!!!!!!

kendrik perkins ran his mouth a little too much, and young brother gasol along with the beast randolph, handed it to the thunder. when is everyone going to realize, especially celtics fans, that perkins really is a NO TALENT thug, that came from a thug mentality system in boston. all they know how to do is run their mouths, and lose games. did you guys see paula pierce get ejected?! and it's only game one! man the celtics were dominated by the crappy, two man show heat. i see miami winning in 5 if boston can't turn it around, go lakers baby!

And just think...the Grizz are doing all of this w/o their best backcourt player, Rudy Gay. Next season, both Oak City & Memphis can be top 4 teams in the Western Conf.

Hopin' we have a Bandwagon tomorrow!!!



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