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How a possible lockout affects the Lakers

Here's a look at how the possibility of an NBA work stoppage affects the Lakers organization and some of their players and executives.

Lakers: In 2012-13, the Lakers begin a 20-year deal with Time Warner Cable  that The Times' Bill Plaschke reported could be worth as much as $3 billion. The Lakers already made plans in anticipation of a possible work stoppage, with The Times' Mike Bresnahan reporting the organization will not offer new contracts to about 20 key employees on their player-personnel side. Bresnahan reports that Lakers assistants Brian Shaw, Chuck Person, Frank Hamblen and Jim Cleamons have contracts that expire on June 30. Part-time assistant coaches Craig Hodges and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar are also in the last years of their contracts, and two members of the team's video department, Chris Bodaken and Patrick O'Keefe, were told they won't have contracts at the end of the season. 

Derek Fisher: Being the president of the NBA Players' Assn., he's at the forefront of negotiating a new collective-bargaining agreement with the league owners. The Times' Broderick Turner reported the owners presented an offer last week that entailed a hard salary cap, significant rollbacks in existing contracts and a larger share of the basketball-related income, a proposal Fisher in his exit interview called "disappointing." Even with the labor agreement expiring June 30, Fisher said he feels "hopeful and optimistic"  a lockout can be avoided.

"There's a lot at stake," he said. "I think both sides, as bad as we want to get a deal done, we're still going to be very careful about how we proceed with these matters. As much as the NBA speaks about the future of the game and trying to protect the game itself, that's a priority of ours as well.... The goal is to get a deal done and not necessarily rush through it, but to try and get something done that will sustain us for the next several years to come."

Kobe Bryant: Even with a possible work stoppage on the horizon, Bryant remains reluctant to get surgery to treat the arthritis on his index finger because he wants to be ready for a full 2010-2011 season. Bryant is opting to build his leg strength this summer rather than rest his surgically repaired right knee and sprained left ankle. Expect him to be in even more frequent contact with teammates and make sure they're doing the necessary off-season work to stay ready. Nonetheless, losing playing time to a work stoppage won't sit well with Bryant, who's trying to collect as many NBA championships and move atop the NBA's all-time scoring list as quickly as possible. 

Still, Bryant told Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski that he'd stick up for the players union: "I’m 100 percent in this fight. I’m not going to just sit here and give back what guys have fought for in this league long before I got here -- not for us now, or the players who come after us. I’m not backing down." During his exit interview, Bryant seemed to backtrack a little, joking, "I like getting foul calls."

Ron Artest: In another effort to help his mental health charities, Artest plans to announce on July 1  how much of his $6.79 million salary he'll donate. But he doesn't know the exact figure yet because of the labor situation, although Artest didn't exactly say it in those terms because of the possibility he'd be fined.

"I can't talk about it too much because I don't know what's happening with everything going on," Artest said. "But we're going to figure out what's going on with basketball. I don't want to get fined, so I can't [say]. We'll figure out what's going on with basketball and then figure out how much of the salary we're going to donate next year."

Matt Barnes and Shannon Brown: Neither went into specifics on whether the possibility of a lockout would play a role in their decisions on free agency, but on a practical level, it will. Barnes and Brown refused to discuss whether they'd opt out of the final year of their contracts, though both expressed an interest for playing for the Lakers.

They revealed  their sentiments more openly to The Times' Mike Bresnahan in March.

Barnes, who has an option next season worth $1.91 million and has played on eight teams in his eight-year career, has often mentioned his desire  for stability and told Bresnahan he is "comfortable" exercising his option to stay with the Lakers. Brown, who has an option next season worth $2.37 million and received what Bresnahan characterized as a "lukewarm response" during free agency last season, acknowledged to Bresnahan that testing free agency again would be the "best scenario" but made it clear he hadn't made a  decision.

Devin Ebanks, Derrick Caracter, Trey Johnson: It remains unclear what their future with the Lakers entails. Should there be a lockout, there's a possibility there would be no Las Vegas Summer League, though the NBA has said no decision has been made

Mitch Kupchak: He declined to say whether a lockout would affect the  search to replace Phil Jackson. But it'll affect how the Lakers navigate free agency and structure their roster.

Lamar Odom: He had joked during the season that he  didn't  worry about burning out from heavy playing time following a stint with Team USA because there may be a lockout anyway. Amid all the questions surrounding whether he could handle the time demands of filming a reality television show with Khloe Kardashian, Odom also joked he's making contingency plans for a work stoppage. 

Pau Gasol: He is strongly considering playing for the Spanish national team this summer, and the reasons go beyond wanting to immediately bounce back from a disappointing playoff performance. With a possible lockout looming, playing internationally will be the best way to stay in shape and pass the time.

Phil Jackson: Jackson ended his last day as the Lakers head coach Wednesday after finishing exit interviews, but he had acknowledged during the season that the possibility of a lockout figured into his decision to retire.  Naturally, the remarks drew a league-imposed $75,000 fine both on him and the Lakers.

-- Mark Medina

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Comments () | Archives (35)

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I wonder how his position as President of the Player's Association has affected his play on the court? Yes it's very honorable what Fish is doing but sometimes I wish their activities were solely basketball.

Has the time come where I can finally stop bashing Fisher's game?

I don't care if its BShaw or Adelman. But please...pretty please say NO to Dunleavy!

I love Fish and have always been a staunch defender of him.

However, Lakers have to bring in a quick, young point guard. Especially now that in all likelihood they'll be moving away from the triangle to a system in which point guard becomes more of a focus in distributing the ball on offense.

We simply need more speed/a younger player at the position. Fish can be their mentor, he could anchor the B-squaders and transition into becoming a future coach.

No more should Kobe have to cover opposing PG's, all the while trying to be the focus of the offense, too.

This is the one aspect of the team that Kupchak hasn't done as well in, stocking young prospects on the roster. In hindsight, the Joe Smith trade should have been for fresh legs rather than a retread (no offense). Theo Ratliff, same thing.

Maybe the T'Wolves are sick of Ricky Rubio's games and finally trade his rights - although he's struggled pretty badly with his jumper.

Seems like most teams have backups that could be starters on the Lakeshow. Seriously. Look at the Hawks, they cut Bibby, then Hinrich goes down and Jeff Teague comes in and practically outplays MVP D-Rose.

Should be interesting...

- - -

Art: Did the NBA outlaw player coaches? I wasn't aware of that. I can't remember any since Bill Russell's last couple of years, but that's all the way back to the end of their 60's run.

If anyone does deserve to become a player-coach, Kobe would be it. I wouldn't be surprised if in the last year or two he does just that if the Lakers again are looking for a head coach in a few years.

BTW yeah, I'm concerned too about them continuing the same thing. Time for a fresh start, a fresh direction and a fresh offensive system. I'm with you on that, the current system hadn't been getting it done, time for a new way of running the offense. Maybe they'll even run a set play or two, a pick-and-roll or whatnot to free up Kobe and get our bigs more involved. Wouldn't that be something! lol...


LROB...Amen to NO DUNLEAVY.. That would be a catrastrophe!!! Adaleman has come close a few times at beating us. Kings..7 games and Rockets with Artest 7 games. We need a QUICKER guard!! DWill are you listening?

Regarding those rookie coaches:

Fred Schaus - went to the Finals 4x
Butch Van Breda Kolff - went to the Finals 2x (including rookie year)
Joe Mullaney - went to the Finals in rookie year
Paul Westhead - Won Finals in rookie year
Pat Riley - Won Finals in rookie year; went to 6 more Finals, winning 4
Mike Dunleavy - went to Finals in rookie year
Randy Pfund - one of the less successful rookie Laker head coach; only lasted one and a half seasons

None of them spent any significant time in the Lakers org as an asst coach like Shaw, they came from somewhere else.

Only Pfund spent significant time in the Lakers org as an assistant before being promoted and he didn't work out very well.

My point is, I think someone from outside the org, even if being promoted to their first head coaching gig, like Thib for example, might be able to get better results.

They don't owe anything to anyone, they don't have any pre-established relationships, they have different experiences to draw from, new ideas. All Shaw knows is the Triangle, does he know anything about squares, circles, ovals, rectangles...

It's the same reason many companies hire a new mgr or executive from outside the organization or if they promote from within it's often to a new division or location with new employees to manage.

Of course there are exceptions, like Popovich, who spent time with the Spurs as an asst and GM, but that is the exception, not the rule.

Who the Lakers choose as the next head coach will say a lot about their satisfaction with the team and it's style of play. If it is Shaw, then I would expect little change, no big trades, just filling in the bench.

Who knows, might work, might not.

I could see them giving Shaw a 1 yr deal, 2 yr max if they still believe this team can get back to the Finals as is.

I don't think they can, but that's worth about as much as the paper this post is written on.

One more thing I forgot to add as to another reason why I'm not in favor of Shaw.

I think this Lakers team has lingering chemistry issues and that Shaw won't be able to fix that.

"if you bring howard next year without upgrading the point guard position it'll be worst than this year,what you relly need is a fast point guard (it does not have to be paul) there are plenty of young athletic unexpensive point guards (jeff teague,darren collison,jonny flynn) and a deadly 3 point shooter like jose calderon (gasol's buddy) or jason kapono that would love to play for the lakers,a fast point guard would attack constantly the oposition defense and would leave the bigs open for easy dunks or kick out for the 3 point shooter, feeding the beast would keep bynum and gasol happy so they would be motivated for defense rebund.kobe has to be limited on shooting option and have to be forced to quit keeping the ball on his hands for so long (that is what slows the pace of the game and result on forcing shots or loosing balls and fast breaks from the oposite teams).new coach has to make koby understand that shooting 7 out 20 is hurting the team and has to play another roll on the team other than making miracle shots at the 24 secs or making fantasy plays that usually end on loose balls ,his game is so predictable and easy for other teams to defend.

Posted by: marino | May 13, 2011 at 10:42 AM "

I don't know why more people aren't saying this. The point guard situation is easily the biggest problem on this team. When Bynum was hot, they weren't working the ball into him so why would having Howard change anything? They need someone that can draw in a defense, keep up with other guards, and penetrate and FINISH on fast break opportunities. If Howard is handed over on a silver platter, of course you take him but the point guard issue should be the first priority. Just because they have won with Fisher as a starting point guard doesn't mean he was the best person for the job.

"Jerry's (Sloan) one of the great guys to coach. He's a stalwart for the NBA. People like him don't come around very often."
---Jerry West


From Wiko:

"Today, the collective bargaining agreement between the NBA and the players' union prohibits the use of player-coaches, in order to avoid circumventing the league's salary cap, as coaches' salaries are not counted under the cap."

I don't think Kobe will be a head coach one day.

Can I third the NO DUNLEAVY motion?

puhleeeeez..... NO MIKE DUNLEAVY!!!!!!!!!!


"No more should Kobe have to cover opposing PG's, all the while trying to be the focus of the offense, too.

Posted by: CyberCosmiX | May 13, 2011 at 11:10 AM "

I think Kobe was guarding the point guards by choice. Other than Westbrook, he has usually been guarding the point guards that either always drive or only shoot from the outside. He won't take the point guards like Derrick Rose that you have to cover everywhere. Against Andre Miller or Rajon Rondo, he can stay home and not use much energy. Against Jason Kidd, he can stay outside and not use much energy. Westbrook has improved his shooting so Kobe struggled with him this year and probably won't be guarding him in the future. They tried him on Chris Paul and it didn't work well either.

I agree with what you are saying but sometimes it is better for Kobe to guard the point guard. Against Miami, it would be better if Kobe could guard Chalmers but there is no way they can put Fisher on Dwyane Wade. With a quicker point guard, they could put that pg on Wade and let Kobe rest on defense.

DWill or CP first item of business. Would also like Howard, but Drew isn't a bad second if that's where it ends up.

There is ice water in Sloan's veins:

Someone shoots an elk on a mountain hunting trip that Karl Malone had helped them arrange and Jerry and Tony walk up to it. "In a split second, this bull elk jumps up and comes at me full bore at about 10 yards. I'm a sitting duck. Your dad, without a blink, steps in front of me, pulls up [his old rifle that he got for $80 at a garage sale], puts a bullet in this elk's chest, and it falls at my feet. I have no chance to even react. I turn and look at your dad and he looks at me and he goes, ‘That's as good as a fast break.'"

Jerry Sloan - our next coach...

>>>This is the one aspect of the team that Kupchak hasn't done as well in,
>>>stocking young prospects on the roster.

Well, think about this.

Name a team that won a championship with a "young prospect" as one of it's top 2 or 3 players.

Usually, the core 3 to 5 players of championship teams are all veterans. There might be a young prospect who contributes, and the Lakers have had those - Farmar, Sasha, and Shannon Brown all contributed to the Lakers championships.

Jerry West worked an absolute miracle in getting James Worthy in the middle of the showtime run. But the rules were different then, so it was a little easier to pull off. And teams place much more value in upside now than they did then, so teams with lottery picks hold onto them like diamonds.

The teams with young prospects (e.g. Portland, Oklahoma City, Minnesota, Memphis) haven't done anything yet.

Teams that are rebuilding bring in "young prospects". Teams that want to win championships bring in experienced veterans.

>>>The point guard situation is easily the biggest problem on this team.

Truer words were never spoken. From 2008-2010, they had enough talent to mask over the PG problem, and just barely enough talent at PG to get by. When they dumped Farmar for someone slower, they exposed themselves.

@ MM

sir Mr. Medina would you do me a favor and answer this one questions?

everyone seems to be talking about this trade rumor and I just want you to check it out! they say its 80% likley that it will happen but im not sure, i asked the blog crew but no one wanted to answer it...

what do you think...

Bynum, Lo and Blake/Brown for
Howard, Arenas, and JJ reddick??

how credible is that and will this work?
I say its just a rumor and wont ever happend, but just wanted to know what you think about this??
any takers? more than welcome to reply!


Heck no to Mike Dunleavy. He's definitely the worst option.

I do like Adelman, he would be a good choice in my opinion. He has a lot of Phil Jacksons qualities about him. I think he learned a lot from competing against Phil.

GO Lakers!


there is an impressive list of head coaches hired without experience. Riley came right out of the announcer booth if I recall correctly.


don't even get me started about Butch van Breda Kolff.
With the 1969 championship on the line in Game 7, Butch van Breda Kolff kept Wilt Chamberlain sitting on the bench during the closing minutes of an eventual 108-106 Boston win.


What do we play for? RINGS!!!

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


Name a team that won a championship with a "young prospect" as one of it's top 2 or 3 players.

Posted by: LongTimeLakerFan

Let's see, hows about a Lakers team with some young whippersnapper of a prospect all of 21 years old named...


2000, 2001, 2002

Or this young dude who came into the league in 1997 and won Rings in 1999,
Tim Duncan

Or this young dude, 28th pick in the draft in the year 2001, won Rings in 2003,
Tony Parker.

Or this guy that won the Finals MVP after just 2 yrs in the league,
Dwayne Wade.

And best of all, the NBA Finals MVP in his rookie year,

the Lakers #1 need is the point guard position. Lakers have been playing 4 on 5 for too many years. Who was it that pointed out that Fisher was last in almost every statistical category among his peers?

All the intangibles in the world cannot make up for this lack of production. Opposing defenses had it made because of this non-impact position.

I say its just a rumor and wont ever happend, but just wanted to know what you think about this??
any takers? more than welcome to reply!

Posted by: LALakerz213

Stupid rumor!
No way.
Brown cannot be traded until he decide if he will resign with the Lakers and the salaries are way, way, way out of line.

The Lakers would be acquiring $25.9 mill in salary while the Magic would be getting $41.6 mill in salary.
No can do.

Next time, check the rumors yourself to see if it can be done:

Hope that helps...

Mike "Can't Coach His Way Out of a Wet Paper Bag" Dunleavy is NOT the answer, Laker brass. Want to alienate a fan base? Hire the uber controlling, stubborn guy who couldn't win with the wealth of talent he assembled for the Clippers. Only Dunleavy could fail with that much talent. He bailed on the Lakers after Magic's HIV announcement so we know loyalty isn't one of his better attributes.

He helped submarine and circumvent an NBA legend in Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor so we know he doesn't put much stock in respecting his elders and he managed to antagonize and alienate practically every single player that ever suited up for him.

Can anyone justify why we should even entertain the notion of putting this half dead fish in the coaching seat vacated by the greatest NBA coach of all time? I'd rather see Magic come back and try coaching again. No joke.

Rick Adelman is the clear choice among candidates outside of our organization. He likes to run an offense similar to the one we run, he has a proven track record of being able to deal extremely well with adversity (just go back and see how many times Adelman used injuries to star players as reasons for failure, now do the same with Dunleavy, see a pattern yet?) and above all else he seems ready to take a team in a big time market on after years of dealing with second tier teams.

If we go with an internal choice, I think Shaw is pretty much the unanimous choice by Laker fans. Would've been Kurt, but seeing his track record in Minnesota maybe his hiring there was a blessing in disguise (granted, he's not blessed with a line up full of talent).

Plus imagine the irony and howls of despair as Adelman hoists the NBA championship trophy coming from Sacramento? How glorious the cacophony would be...

All the intangibles in the world cannot make up for this lack of production. Opposing defenses had it made because of this non-impact position.

Posted by: Troll Man

I have seldom criticized Fish and was totally in favor of them resigning him after the 2010 season, but I thought they would give him a 1 yr, $5 mill deal so he could go out with PJ.

But 3, three, III, years??

I think they were on a high after winning back to back and didn't think through clearly some of their actions in the summer of 2010.

As much as I have liked Fish through the years, it's time.
They should pull the plug on his life support.

Unfortunately, he has a contract.
And it is for 2 more years.

Him and Luke could be bench BFF's though.

IF, Lakers hire Adlemen, Aaron Brooks is a 2011 Free Agent and he IS quick.
Just sayin'
And if D Howard demands a trade, he and Bynum work straight up according to Trade Machine.
That would probably be enough right there, but Westbrook is also a 2012 FA and could demand a trade. He is an LA player too.
Could be interesting.

@ Art - Trade Machine? lol I never heard of that but okay ill take your word for it!

thanks for the reply, yea stupid rumors I guess, so that wont happend but yeah..

where MM?

Posted by: billy in slo | May 13, 2011 at 01:14 PM
Aaron Brooks? ill take that as a PG for LAL!!

all this talk abotu Alderman is kinda true...

how many times did the Rockets with him as a coach almost beat us or came really close in beating us..

Remember the first game of the season, LAL vs ROCKETS.. we beraly won that game and they didnt have Artest, Tmac or Yao(on/off) every single time we met the Rockets, they always gave us a hard time, I think thats probably why he can be our next coach, because Im sure with all the talent in LA, he can get a title, but in Houston, they didnt have any quality players, just half talented players and they gave the Lakers run for their money every match...

so my conclusion?? why not!!!??

wussup lakers fans no need 2 worry. i have the perfect scenerio. hire rick adelman, trade gasol artest and either fisher or blake for chris paul trevor ariza and emeka okafor. I need you guys to pass it along lets get mitch kupchak's attention and make this thing happen. with this trade we get youth, athleticism, and great 3 point shooting; all of the things the team was missing this year. And with okafor we will continue the length and great interior defense that we enjoyed the last couple of years.

never - I don't think it distracted Fisher a bit. I noticed he did less media interviews this year, but his playing routine stayed the same. Any disappointment in his play was strictly on his abilities.

Aaron Brooks would be nice, so would JJ Riddick, who's a better defender. I'd take Riddick. Ray Felton is also available.

I love Fish and defended him throughout his career, but he I can't excuse him for his performance this playoffs. There is a time for everyone to say goodbye, and for Fisher, it is this time. Thanks for the 5 rings, Fish, but you understand, we need to reload for a chance at the championship next year!

Who can think of Fisher without remembering .04 ?

Unfortunately, today that is how long it takes for opposing point guards to blow by him.

I don't know if anyone has brought this up. But is a lockout really bad for the Lakers? We all know that Phil needs a break in between seasons. Wouldn't the lockout buy him some time? Second the lockout allows Bynum and Kobe some needed rest, although we know Kobe won't take advantage of it. With the idea of salary caps and reduction in salaries. Wouldn't it be useful for the Laker organization? To negotiate with a free agent who may be getting lower offers because of the cap? If they're going to take less why not do it with the possibility of taking less and winning a championship? Just a thought. Maybe Fish will hit another game winning shot for the Lakers.



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